Today in History – January 19

1419 – Rouen surrendered to Henry V, completing his conquest of Normandy.

1764 – John Wilkes was expelled from the British House of Commons for seditious libel.

1793 – King Louis XVI was tried by the French Convention, found guilty of treason and sentenced to the guillotine.

1825 – Ezra Daggett and Thomas Kensett of New York City patented a canning process to preserve salmon, oysters and lobsters.

1861 – Georgia seceded from the Union.

1883 – Thomas Edison’s first village electric lighting system using overhead wires began operation in Roselle, NJ.

1907 – The first film reviews appeared in “Variety” magazine.

1915 – George Claude, of Paris, France, patented the neon discharge tube for use in advertising signs.

1915 – More than 20 people were killed when German zeppelins bombed England for the first time. The bombs were dropped on Great Yarmouth and King’s Lynn.

1937 – Howard Hughes set a transcontinental air record. He flew from Los Angeles to New York City in 7 hours, 28 minutes and 25 seconds.

1942 – The Japanese invaded Burma (later Myanmar).

1944 – The U.S. federal government relinquished control of the nation’s railroads after the settlement of a wage dispute.

1949 – The salary of the President of the United States was increased from $75,000 to $100,000 with an additional $50,000 expense allowance for each year in office.

1952 – The National Football League (NFL) bought the franchise of the New York Yankees from Ted Collins. The franchise was then awarded to a group in Dallas on January 24.

1953 – Sixty-eight percent of all TV sets in the U.S. were tuned to CBS-TV, as Lucy Ricardo, of “I Love Lucy,” gave birth to a baby boy.

1955 – U.S. President Eisenhower allowed a filmed news conference to be used on television (and in movie newsreels) for the first time.

1957 – Philadelphia comedian, Ernie Kovacs, did a half-hour TV show without saying a single word of dialogue.

1966 – Indira Gandhi was elected prime minister of India.

1969 – In protest against the Russian invasion of 1968, Czech student Jan Palach set himself on fire in Prague’s Wenceslas Square.

1971 – At the Charles Manson murder trial, the Beatles’ “Helter Skelter” was played. At the scene of one of his gruesome murders, the words “helter skelter” were written on a mirror.

1971 – “No, No Nanette” opened at the 46th Street Theatre in New York City.

1977 – U.S. President Ford pardoned Iva Toguri D’Aquino (the “Tokyo Rose”).

1979 – Former U.S. Attorney General John N. Mitchell was released on parole after serving 19 months at a federal prison in Alabama.

1981 – The U.S. and Iran signed an agreement paving the way for the release of 52 Americans held hostage for more than 14 months and for arrangements to unfreeze Iranian assets and to resolve all claims against Iran.

1983 – China announced that it was bannning 1983 purchases of cotton, soybeans and chemical fibers from the United States.

1993 – IBM announced a loss of $4.97 billion for 1992. It was the largest single-year loss in U.S. corporate history.

1995 – Russian forces overwhelmed the resistance forces in Chechnya.

1996 – U.S. first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton was subpoenaed to appear before a federal grand jury. The investigation was concerning the discovery of billing records related to the Whitewater real estate investment venture.

1997 – Yasser Arafat returned to Hebron for the first time in more than 30 years. He joined 60,000 Palestinians in celebration over the handover of the last West Bank city in Israeli control.

2000 – In New York’s Time Square, the first WWF restaurant opened.

2001 – Texas officials demoted a warden and suspended three other prison workers in the wake of the escape of the “Texas 7.”

2006 – NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft was launched. The mission was the first to investigate Pluto.

2013 – In Scottsdale, AZ, the original Batmobile for the TV series “Batman” sold at auction for $4.6 million. It was the first of six Batmobiles produced for the show.


Today in History – January 18

1803 – Thomas Jefferson, in secret communication with Congress, sought authorization for the first official exploration by the U.S. government.

1778 – English navigator Captain James Cook discovered the Hawaiian Islands, which he called the “Sandwich Islands.”

1788 – The first English settlers arrived in Australia’s Botany Bay to establish a penal colony. The group moved north eight days later and settled at Port Jackson.

1871 – Wilhelm, King of Prussia from 1861, was proclaimed the first German Emperor.

1886 – The Hockey Association was formed in England. This date is the birthday of modern field hockey.

1896 – The x-ray machine was exhibited for the first time.

1911 – For the first time an aircraft landed on a ship. Pilot Eugene B. Ely flew onto the deck of the USS Pennsylvania in San Francisco harbor.

1919 – The World War I Peace Congress opened in Versailles, France.

1929 – Walter Winchell made his debut on radio.

1937 – CBS radio debuted “Aunt Jenny’s Real Life Stories”.

1939 – Louis Armstrong and his orchestra recorded “Jeepers Creepers.”

1943 – During World War II, the Soviets announced that they had broken the Nazi siege of Leningrad, which had began in September of 1941.

1943 – U.S. commercial bakers stopped selling sliced bread. Only whole loaves were sold during the ban until the end of World War II.

1948 – “The Original Amateur Hour” debuted. The show was on the air for 22 years.

1950 – The federal tax on oleomargarine was repealed.

1951 – Joan Blondell made her TV debut on “Pot of Gold” episode of “Airflyte Theatre” on CBS-TV.

1957 – The first, non-stop, around-the-world, jet flight came to an end at Riverside, CA. The plane was refueled in mid-flight by huge aerial tankers.

1958 – Willie O’Ree made his NHL debut with the Boston Bruins. He was the first black player to enter the league.

1964 – The plans for the original World Trade Center in New York were unveiled to the public.

1967 – Albert DeSalvo, who claimed to be the “Boston Strangler,” was convicted in Cambridge, MA, of armed robbery, assault and sex offenses. He was sentenced to life in prison. Desalvo was killed in 1973 by a fellow inmate.

1972 – Former Rhodesian prime minister Garfield Todd and his daughter were placed under house arrest for campaigning against Rhodesian independence.

1975 – “The Jeffersons” debuted on CBS-TV.

1978 – The European Court of Human Rights cleared the British government of torture but found it guilty of inhuman and degrading treatment of prisoners in Northern Ireland.

1985 – Mary Decker broke a world, indoor record when she ran the women’s, 2,000-meter race in 5:34.2. She also ran the outdoor mile in 4:16.7.

1987 – For the first time in history the Public Broadcasting System (PBS) was seen by over 100 million viewers. The audience was measured during the week of January 12-18.

1990 – A jury in Los Angeles, CA, acquitted former preschool operators Raymond Buckey and his mother, Peggy McMartin Buckey, of 52 child molestation charges.

1990 – In an FBI sting, Washington, DC, Mayor Marion Barry was arrested for drug possession. He was later convicted of a misdemeanor.

1991 – Eastern Airlines shut down after 62 years in business due to financial problems.

1993 – The Martin Luther King Jr. holiday was observed in all 50 U.S. states for the first time.

1995 – The “yahoo.com” domain was created.

1995 – A network of caves were discovered near the town of Vallon-Pont-d’Arc in southern France. The caves contained paintings and engravings that were 17,000 to 20,000 years old.

1997 – Hutu militiamen killed three Spanish aid workers and three soldiers and seriously wound an American in a night attack in NW Rwanda.

2000 – The Chinese web services company Baidu, Inc. was incorporated in Beijing.

2002 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced the approval of a saliva-based ovulation test.

2012 – Wikipedia began a 24-hour “blackout” in protest against proposed anti-piracy legislation (S. 968 and H.R. 3261) known as the Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA) in the Senate and the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) in the House. Many websites, including Reddit, Google, Facebook, Amazon and others, contended would make it challenging if not impossible for them to operate.


Today in History – January 17

1377 – The Papal See was transferred from Avignon in France back to Rome.

1562 – French Protestants were recognized under the Edict of St. Germain.

1773 – Captain Cook’s Resolution became the first ship to cross the Antarctic Circle.

1795 – The Dudingston Curling Society was organized in Edinburgh, Scotland.

1806 – James Madison Randolph, grandson of U.S. President Thomas Jefferson, was the first child born in the White House.

1852 – The independence of the Transvaal Boers was recognized by Britain.

1871 – Andrew S. Hallidie received a patent for a cable car system.

1882 – Thomas Edison’s exhibit opened the Crystal Palace Exhibition in London.

1893 – The Kingdom of Hawaii’s monarchy was overthrown when a group of businessmen and sugar planters forced Queen Liliuokalani to abdicate.

1900 – The U.S. took Wake Island where there was in important cable link between Hawaii and Manila.

1900 – Yaqui Indians in Texas proclaimed their independence from Mexico.

1900 – Mormon Brigham Roberts was denied a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives for his practicing of polygamy.

1905 – Punchboards were patented by a manufacturing firm in Chicago, IL.

1912 – English explorer Robert Falcon Scott reached the South Pole. Norwegian Roald Amundsen had beaten him there by one month. Scott and his party died during the return trip.

1913 – All partner interests in 36 Golden Rule Stores were consolidated and incorporated in Utah into one company. The new corporation was the J.C. Penney Company.

1916 – The Professional Golfers Association was formed in New York City.

1928 – The fully automatic, film-developing machine was patented by A.M. Josepho.

1934 – Ferdinand Porsche submitted a design for a people’s car, a “Volkswagen,” to the new German Reich government.

1938 – “Stepmother” debuted on CBS radio.

1945 – Soviet and Polish forces liberated Warsaw during World War II.

1945 – Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg disappeared in Hungary while in Soviet custody. Wallenberg was credited with saving tens of thousands of Jews.

1946 – The United Nations Security Council held its first meeting.

1949 – “The Goldbergs” debuted on CBS-TV. The program had been on radio since 1931. The TV version lasted for four years.

1959 – Senegal and the French Sudan joined to form the Federal State of Mali.

1961 – In his farewell address, U.S. President Eisenhower warned against the rise of “the military-industrial complex.”

1966 – A B-52 carrying four H-bombs collided with a refuelling tanker. The bombs were released and eight crewmembers were killed.

1977 – Double murderer Gary Gilmore became the first to be executed in the U.S. in a decade. The firing squad took place at Utah State Prison.

1985 – Leonard Nimoy got a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

1991 – Coalition airstrikes began against Iraq after negotiations failed to get Iraq to retreat from the country of Kuwait.

1992 – An IRA bomb, placed next to a remote country road in County Tyrone, Northern Ireland, killed seven building workers and injured seven others.

1994 – The Northridge earthquake rocked Los Angeles, CA, registering a 6.7 on the Richter Scale. At least 61 people were killed and about $20 billion in damage was caused.

1995 – More than 6,000 people were killed when an earthquake with a magnitude of 7.2 devastated the city of Kobe, Japan.

1997 – A court in Ireland granted the first divorce in the Roman Catholic country’s history.

1997 – Israel gave over 80% of Hebron to Palestinian rule, but held the remainder where several hundred Jewish settlers lived among 20,000 Palestinians.

1998 – U.S. President Clinton gave his deposition in the Paula Jones sexual harassment lawsuit against him. He was the first U.S. President to testify as a defendant in a criminal or civil lawsuit.

2000 – British pharmaceutical companies Glaxo Wellcome PLC and SmithKline Beecham PLC agreed to a merger that created the world’s largest drugmaker.

2001 – Congo’s President Laurent Kabila was shot and killed during a coup attempt. Congolese officials temporarily placed Kabila’s son in charge of the government.

2001 – The director of Palestinian TV, Hisham Miki, was killed at a restaurant when three masked gunmen walked up to his table and shot him more than 10 times.

2002 – It was announced that Microsoft had signed a joint venture agreement to produce software with two partners in China. The two partners were Beijin Centergate Technologies (Holding) Co. and the Stone Group.


Today in History – January 15

1559 – England’s Queen Elizabeth I (Elizabeth Tudor) was crowned in Westminster Abbey.

1624 – Many riots occurred in Mexico when it was announced that all churches were to be closed.

1777 – The people of New Connecticut (now the state of Vermont) declared their independence.

1844 – The University of Notre Dame received its charter from the state of Indiana.

1863 – “The Boston Morning Journal” became the first paper in the U.S. to be published on wood pulp paper.

1870 – A cartoon by Thomas Nast titled “A Live Jackass Kicking a Dead Lion” appeared in “Harper’s Weekly.” The cartoon used the donkey to symbolize the Democratic Party for the first time.

1892 – “Triangle” magazine in Springfield, MA, published the rules for a brand new game. The original rules involved attaching a peach baskets to a suspended board. It is now known as basketball.

1899 – Edwin Markham’s poem, “The Man With a Hoe,” was published for the first time.

1906 – Willie Hoppe won the billiard championship of the world in Paris, France.

1908 – Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority became America’s first Greek-letter organization established by African-American college women.

1913 – The first telephone line between Berlin and New York was inaugurated.

1936 – The first, all glass, windowless building was completed in Toledo, OH. The building was the new home of the Owens-Illinois Glass Company Laboratory.

1943 – The Pentagon was dedicated as the world’s largest office building just outside Washington, DC, in Arlington, VA. The structure covers 34 acres of land and has 17 miles of corridors.

1945 – CBS Radio debuted “House Party”. The show was on the air for 22 years.

1953 – Harry S Truman became the first U.S. President to use radio and television to give his farewell as he left office.

1955 – The first solar-heated, radiation-cooled house was built by Raymond Bliss in Tucson, AZ.

1967 – The first National Football League Super Bowl was played. The Green Bay Packers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs of the American Football League. The final score was 35-10.

1973 – U.S. President Nixon announced the suspension of all U.S. offensive action in North Vietnam. He cited progress in peace negotiations as the reason.

1974 – “Happy Days” premiered on ABC-TV.

1986 – President Reagan signed legislation making Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday a national holiday to be celebrated on the third Monday of January.

1987 – Paramount Home Video reported that it would place a commercial at the front of one of its video releases for the first time. It was a 30-second Diet Pepsi ad at the beginning of “Top Gun.”

2001 – Wikipedia was launched.

2003 – The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the U.S. Congress had permission to repeatedly extend copyright protection.

2006 – NASA’s Stardust space probe mission was completed when it’s sample return capsule returned to Earth with comet dust from comet Wild 2.


Back from Sabbatical….Today in History – January 14

1639 – Connecticut’s first constitution, the “Fundamental Orders,” was adopted.

1784 – The United States ratified a peace treaty with England ending the Revolutionary War.

1858 – French emperor Napoleon III escaped an attempt on his life.

1873 – John Hyatt’s 1869 invention ‘Celluloid’ was registered as a trademark.

1878 – Alexander Graham Bell demonstrated the telephone for Britain’s Queen Victoria.

1882 – The Myopia Hunt Club, in Winchester, MA, became the first country club in the United States.

1907 – An earthquake killed over 1,000 people in Kingston, Jamaica.

1939 – “Honolulu Bound” was heard on CBS radio for the first time.

1943 – U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt became the first U.S. President to fly in an airplane while in office. He flew from Miami, FL, to French Morocco where he met with British Prime Minister Winston Churchill to discuss World War II.

1951 – The first National Football League Pro Bowl All-Star Game was played in Los Angeles, CA.

1952 – NBC’s “Today” show premiered.

1953 – Josip Broz Tito was elected president of Yugoslavia by the country’s Parliament.

1954 – Marilyn Monroe and Joe DiMaggio were married. The marriage only lasted nine months.

1954 – The Hudson Motor Car Company merged with Nash-Kelvinator. The new company was called the American Motors Corporation.

1963 – George C. Wallace was sworn in as governor of Alabama.

1969 – An explosion aboard the U.S. aircraft carrier Enterprise off Hawaii killed 25 crew members.

1972 – NBC-TV debuted “Sanford & Son.”

1973 – The Miami Dolphins defeated the Washington Redskins in Super Bowl VII and became the first NFL team to go undefeated in a season.

1985 – Martina Navratilova won her 100th tournament. She joined Jimmy Connors and Chris Evert Lloyd as the only professional tennis players to win 100 tournaments.

1985 – Former Miss America, Phyllis George, joined Bill Kurtis as host of “The CBS Morning News”.

1986 – “Rambo: First Blood, Part II” arrived at video stores. It broke the record set by “Ghostbusters”, for first day orders. 435,000 copies of the video were sold.

1993 – Television talk show host David Letterman announced he was moving from NBC to CBS.

1993 – The British government pledged to introduce legislation to criminalize invasions of privacy by the press.

1994 – U.S. President Clinton and Russian President Boris Yeltsin signed Kremlin accords to stop aiming missiles at any nation and to dismantle the nuclear arsenal of Ukraine.

1996 – Jorge Sampaio was elected president of Portugal.

1996 – Juan Garcia Abrego was arrested by Mexican agents. The alleged drug lord was handed over to the FBI the next day.

1998 – Whitewater prosecutors questioned Hillary Rodham Clinton at the White House for 10 minutes about the gathering of FBI background files on past Republican political appointees.

1998 – In Dallas, researchers report an enzyme that slows the aging process and cell death.

1999 – The impeachment trial of U.S. President Clinton began in Washington, DC.

1999 – The U.S. proposed the lifting of the U.N. ceilings on the sale of oil in Iraq. The restriction being that the money be used to buy medicine and food for the Iraqi people.

2000 – A U.N. tribunal sentenced five Bosnian Croats to up to 25 years for the 1993 massacre of over 100 Muslims in a Bosnian village.

2000 – The Dow Jones industrial average hit a new high when it closed at 11,722.98. Earlier in the session, the Dow had risen to 11,750.98. Both records stood until October 3, 2006.

2002 – NBC’s “Today” celebrated its 50th anniversary on television.

2002 – Actor Brad Renfro, 19, was arrested after being stopped on a traffic violation. He was charged with public intoxication and driving without a license.

2004 – In St. Louis, a Lewis and Clark Exhibition opened at the Missouri History Museum. The exhibit featured 500 rare and priceless objects used by the Corps of Discovery.

2005 – A probe, from the Cassini-Huygens mission, sent back pictures during and after landing on Saturn’s moon Titan. The mission was launched on October 15, 1997.


American Uprising

By Daniel Greenfield 

This wasn’t an election. It was a revolution.

It’s midnight in America. The day before fifty million Americans got up and stood in front of the great iron wheel that had been grinding them down. They stood there even though the media told them it was useless. They took their stand even while all the chattering classes laughed and taunted them.

They were fathers who couldn’t feed their families anymore. They were mothers who couldn’t afford health care. They were workers whose jobs had been sold off to foreign countries. They were sons who didn’t see a future for themselves. They were daughters afraid of being murdered by the “unaccompanied minors” flooding into their towns. They took a deep breath and they stood.

They held up their hands and the great iron wheel stopped.

The Great Blue Wall crumbled. The impossible states fell one by one. Ohio. Wisconsin. Pennsylvania. Iowa. The white working class that had been overlooked and trampled on for so long got to its feet. It rose up against its oppressors and the rest of the nation, from coast to coast, rose up with it.

They fought back against their jobs being shipped overseas while their towns filled with migrants that got everything while they got nothing. They fought back against a system in which they could go to jail for a trifle while the elites could violate the law and still stroll through a presidential election. They fought back against being told that they had to watch what they say. They fought back against being held in contempt because they wanted to work for a living and take care of their families.

They fought and they won.

This wasn’t a vote. It was an uprising. Like the ordinary men chipping away at the Berlin Wall, they tore down an unnatural thing that had towered over them. And as they watched it fall, they marveled at how weak and fragile it had always been. And how much stronger they were than they had ever known.

Who were these people? They were leftovers and flyover country. They didn’t have bachelor degrees and had never set foot in a Starbucks. They were the white working class. They didn’t talk right or think right. They had the wrong ideas, the wrong clothes and the ridiculous idea that they still mattered.

They were wrong about everything. Illegal immigration? Everyone knew it was here to stay. Black Lives Matter? The new civil rights movement. Manufacturing? As dead as the dodo. Banning Muslims? What kind of bigot even thinks that way? Love wins. Marriage loses. The future belongs to the urban metrosexual and his dot com, not the guy who used to have a good job before it went to China or Mexico.

They couldn’t change anything. A thousand politicians and pundits had talked of getting them to adapt to the inevitable future. Instead they got in their pickup trucks and drove out to vote.

And they changed everything.

Barack Hussein Obama boasted that he had changed America. A billion regulations, a million immigrants, a hundred thousand lies and it was no longer your America. It was his.

He was JFK and FDR rolled into one. He told us that his version of history was right and inevitable.

And they voted and left him in the dust. They walked past him and they didn’t listen. He had come to campaign to where they still cling to their guns and their bibles. He came to plead for his legacy.

And America said, “No.”

Fifty millions Americans repudiated him. They repudiated the Obamas and the Clintons. They ignored the celebrities. They paid no attention to the media. They voted because they believed in the impossible. And their dedication made the impossible happen.

Americans were told that walls couldn’t be built and factories couldn’t be opened. That treaties couldn’t be unsigned and wars couldn’t be won. It was impossible to ban Muslim terrorists from coming to America or to deport the illegal aliens turning towns and cities into gangland territories.

It was all impossible. And fifty million Americans did the impossible. They turned the world upside down.

It’s midnight in America. CNN is weeping. MSNBC is wailing. ABC calls it a tantrum. NBC damns it. It wasn’t supposed to happen. The same machine that crushed the American people for two straight terms, the mass of government, corporations and non-profits that ran the country, was set to win.

Instead the people stood in front of the machine. They blocked it with their bodies. They went to vote even though the polls told them it was useless. They mailed in their absentee ballots even while Hillary Clinton was planning her fireworks victory celebration. They looked at the empty factories and barren farms. They drove through the early cold. They waited in line. They came home to their children to tell them that they had done their best for their future. They bet on America. And they won.

They won improbably. And they won amazingly.

They were tired of ObamaCare. They were tired of unemployment. They were tired of being lied to. They were tired of watching their sons come back in coffins to protect some Muslim country. They were tired of being called racists and homophobes. They were tired of seeing their America disappear.

And they stood up and fought back. This was their last hope. Their last chance to be heard.

Watch this video. See ten ways John Oliver destroyed Donald Trump. Here’s three ways Samantha Bee broke the internet by taunting Trump supporters. These three minutes of Stephen Colbert talking about how stupid Trump is owns the internet. Watch Madonna curse out Trump supporters. Watch Katy Perry. Watch Miley Cyrus. Watch Robert Downey Jr. Watch Beyonce campaign with Hillary. Watch. Click.

Watch fifty million Americans take back their country.

The media had the election wrong all along. This wasn’t about personalities. It was about the impersonal. It was about fifty million people whose names no one except a server will ever know fighting back. It was about the homeless woman guarding Trump’s star. It was about the lost Democrats searching for someone to represent them in Ohio and Pennsylvania. It was about the union men who nodded along when the organizers told them how to vote, but who refused to sell out their futures.

No one will ever interview all those men and women. We will never see all their faces. But they are us and we are them. They came to the aid of a nation in peril. They did what real Americans have always done. They did the impossible.

America is a nation of impossibilities. We exist because our forefathers did not take no for an answer. Not from kings or tyrants. Not from the elites who told them that it couldn’t be done.

The day when we stop being able to pull of the impossible is the day that America will cease to exist.

Today is not that day. Today fifty million Americans did the impossible.

Midnight has passed. A new day has come. And everything is about to change


The Clintons — At the End of All Things

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Epic greed, power, and pride: Where’s the bottom? With Bill and Hillary, there’s no telling.

VDH crushes another one……and the Clintons along the way.

What was the Clinton telos? The end point, the aim of all their lying, cheating, criminality, dishonor, and degradation?

Given the latest Weiner scandals coming on top of the latest WikiLeaks scandals, we wonder, what did the Clintons really wish to end up as — and why? Are they Goethe’s Faust or tortured souls crushed by the weight of their money bags in Dante’s Fourth Circle of Hell?

For a few criminals, remorse comes with old age; but for the Clintons, near-70 was to be the capstone, the last chance to trump all their prior shenanigans. They were artists of amorality, and the election of 2016 was to be their magnum opus.

Collate the FBI reopened investigation, WikiLeaks Podesta trove, revelations about the Clinton Foundation, the e-mail–server scandal, the DNC disclosures, and the various off-the-cuff campaign remarks of Bill and Hillary Clinton, and one then ponders what was the point of the Clinton shakedowns, the loss of reputation, the crude lawbreaking, as they neared their seventh decade. To paraphrase Barack Obama, in his progressive sermonizing on making enough money, did the two ever think they had enough money, enough honors, enough power already?

The Hillary/Bill fortune — generated by pay-for-play influence peddling on the proposition that Bill would return to the White House under Hillary’s aegis and reward friends while punishing enemies — hit a reported $150 million some time ago, a fortune built not on farming, mining, insurance, finance, high-tech, or manufacturing, but on skimming off money. The Clintons are simply grifters whose insider access to government gave them the power to make rich people richer.

Long gone was the Scrooge-like need to write off used underwear as charitable tax deductions or to play 4-trillion-to-one odds in rigging a $100,000 cattle-futures profit on a $1,000 “investment,” or Hillary’s decade-and-a-half as a corporate lawyer masquerading as a children’s advocate. How pathetic the minor league Whitewater cons must seem now to the multimillionaire Clintons — such a tawdry ancient example of amateurish shakedowns when compared with the sophistication of real profiteering through the humanitarian-sounding, high-brow, corrupt Clinton Foundation.

So the Clintons finally got their millions and what such millions can ensure for their separate lifestyles. They have at last beautiful gated estates, tasteful and secluded from hoi polloi, light years away from Arkansas and the Rose Law Firm. Progressive Chelsea married a multimillionaire hedge-fund operator whose father served five years in federal prison for bank fraud, mail fraud, and wire fraud. Her parents’ profiteering can allow Chelsea to announce, perhaps even sincerely, that she is not interested in money. Why should she be, given her own reported $15 million net worth from maternal spin-off favors? She lives in a $10 million Manhattan residence, so her parents had no motivation to get more in order to “provide” for their offspring. Instead, was bringing Chelsea down to Bill and Hillary’s level as a Foundation fixer a way to leave her a post mortem primer on how to get even richer?

In sum, there was certainly no need for Hillary to even have considered flying to the Moroccan autocracy on the eve of announcing her presidential candida to leverage a $12 million speaking “fee” from a cut-throat Moroccan mining company, Why the drive to pile profits on top of profits on top of profits? Or, as Hillary’s top aide, Huma Abedin, put it of the quid pro quo fee (i.e., the mining company felt that it had gotten from the Clinton-run State Department a U.S.-financed Export-Import Bank loan of $92 million):

This was HRC’s idea, our office approached the Moroccans and they 100 percent believe they are doing this at her request.

Translated: A President Hillary Clinton would probably have no regret that dozens of heads of state, the majority of them dictatorial and not especially friendly to the U.S., would feel that they had done business with Hillary and Bill — and she, as a recipient of their largess, would owe them commensurate attention.

Why did multimillionaire Hillary charge UCLA, in the era of thousands of indebted students, $300,000 (rather than, say, $149,999.99) for a brief, platitudinous speech? Why did multimillionaire Bill need more than $17 million for being honorary “chancellor” of the financially for-profit but tottering Laureate University (whose spin-off associate organization was a recipient of State Department largesse)? Did he think the extra millions were worth the embarrassment of being the highest-paid and least-busy college executive in U.S. history?

Apparently, the good life did not drive the Clintons so much as the quest for the supposed best life. Even though they had finally “made it” among the multimillionaire set, the Clintons always saw others (no doubt, deemed by them less deserving) with far, far more — whether Jeffery Epstein, with his ability to jet wherever and with whomever he pleased, or green half-a-billionaire Al Gore, who ran even more successful cons, such as rapidly selling a worthless cable TV station to beat impending capital-gains taxes, and selling it to none other than the anti-Semitic Al Jazeera, whose carbon-generated profits come from autocratic Qatar. (The media never audited Gore’s attempt to become a cable mogul, unlike their current concerns about a potential Trump media outlet).

The rich did not pressure the Clintons for paid favors as much as they sought out the Clintons as targets for graft. They certainly understand and smile at Hillary’s boilerplate promise of “making the rich pay their fair share” — the mantra of those who are worth over $100 million and immune from the impact of any tax hikes, or, for that matter, immune from any consequences whatsoever of their own ideology.

The Clintons suffer from greed, as defined by Aristotle: endless acquisition solely for the benefit of self. With their insatiable appetites, they resented the limits that multimillionaire status put on them, boundaries they could bypass only by accumulating ever greater riches. The billion-dollar foundation squared the circle of progressive politicians profiting from the public purse by offering a veneer of “doing good” while offering free luxury travel commensurate with the style of the global rich, by offering sinecures for their loyal but otherwise unemployable cronies, and by spinning off lobbying and speaking fees (the original font of their $100-million-plus personal fortune and the likely reason for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s decision to put all her communications, mercantile included, on a private server safe from government scrutiny). Acquiring money to the extent that money would become superfluous was certainly a Clinton telos — and the subtext of the entire Podesta trove and the disclosures about the Clinton Foundation.

Power and pride were the other catalyst for Clinton criminality. I don’t think progressive politics mattered much to the Clintons, at least compared with what drives the more sincere Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren. Hillary, like Bill, has no real political beliefs — though she doesn’t hesitate to pursue a mostly opportunistic progressive political agenda. By temperament and background, the Clintons are leftists and will follow a leftist vision, sort of, but one predicated on doing so within the constraints of obtaining and keeping power.

Trade deals? Hillary is flexible given the fickle public mood. Fracking? It depends on where the money is. The Keystone Pipeline? What are the pros and cons in key swing states? Wall Street criminality? One has to distinguish a wink-and-nod political façade from a private flexibility. Gay marriage? She can reluctantly “evolve” under pressure. Immigration? It hinges on Latino demography in swing states, and how bothersome, as their aides put it, “needy” Latinos and “brown” op-ed writers become. Black Lives Matter? Had the black vote not won Obama the 2008 and 2012 elections, Hillary would probably have persisted in Bill’s 1990’s mode (when he condemned rap singer Sister Soulja for her racism and her anti-white rhetoric) and in her own critique of black “super predators,” as she called gang members in 1996.

For the Clintons, power is the narcotic of being sought out, of being surrounded by retainers, of bringing enemies to heel and enticing sycophants with benefits. Liberalism and progressivism are mere social and cultural furniture, the “correct” politics of their background that one mouths and exploits to obtain and maintain political clout — and to get really, really rich without guilt or apology.

As in the quest for lucre, the Clintons’ appetite for high-profile authority is endless. Just as $150 million seemed as nothing compared with the billions and billions raked in by their friends and associates, so too eight years in the White House, tenure as governor, senator, or secretary of state were never enough. In between such tenures, the Clintons suffered droughts when they were not on center stage and in no position to wield absolute power, as they watched less deserving folk (the Obamas perhaps in particular) gain inordinate attention. A Hillary presidency would give the Clintons unprecedented Peronist-like power, in a manner unlike any couple in American history.

Of course, the Clintons are not only corrupt but cynical as well. They accept that the progressive media, the foundations, the universities, the bureaucracies, Hollywood, and Silicon Valley honor power more than trendy left-wing politics; they well understand that their fans will, for them, make the necessary adjustments to contextualize Clinton criminality or amorality. Sexual predations, the demonization of women, graft, and unequal protection under the law are also of no consequence to the inbred, conflicted, and morally challenged media – who will always check in with the Clinton team, like errant dogs who scratch the backdoor of their master after a periodic runaway.

The Clintons have contempt for the media precisely because the media are so obsequious. They smile, that, like themselves, the media are easily manipulated and compromised — to the extent of offering their articles, before publication, for Clinton approval (as the New York Times’ Mark Leibovich did; leaking debate questions to the Clinton campaign (as Donna Brazile did); or saying (as Politico’s chief political correspondent did), “I have become a hack. . . .  Please don’t share or tell anyone I did this Tell me if I f**ked up anything.” The Clintons view such sycophants not with affection, but with disdain, given that they are moochers no better than the Clintons, with the same base desires, albeit better camouflaged by their pretense of objectivity.

To paraphrase Demosthenes’s warning of the impending arrival of the war-scarred and half-blind Philip II, the Clintons have devoted their lives, their health, their very bodies and souls to get where they are. And their visible scars prove it.

They have long ago lost any sense of shame — Bill is hourly caricatured as a sexual predator, and the best that can be said of Hillary’s character is that the bankrupt Left shrugs, “She may be a crook, but she’s our crook.” In Dorian Gray fashion, their sins are now imprinted on their faces and visible in their tremors. They were and are capable of any and everything.

And one wonders whether, in fleeting seconds here at the end of things, they still believe that it was all worth what they have become.