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« Mission Accomplished: The Intended Effect | Main | Why Don't We Have Linkage of Disarmament and Human Rights Anymore with Russia? »

July 04, 2010

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Mark

"Maybe that's because what other sources say who are less giddy about the Russian-American reset --or uninvolved with it at all -- is that the goose quills came from Jefferson's own geese, which he raised himself on his Monticello farm"

Really? Who says that? A "Hubber" named "Bits N' Pieces" whose father was a roller-coaster mechanic and who couldn't be trusted near water unsupervised as a child? According to this promising author, who "never lets her morals get in the way of doing what's right", the origin of Jefferson's quill is recorded "in American history". Is it? Where? If this is your most scholarly reference, I hope you'll agree it's at best anecdotal.

"Nobody came up with this goose-quill shill before the reset, however". I beg to differ. According to this reference,

http://www.frccusa.org/Russian_American_Library.html

between 1783 and 1812 there were 1320 commercial voyages from St Petersburg to the United States. A popular item thus shipped was goose quills, as American writers of the day tended to use turkey feathers, which were inferior for writing purposes. Some shipments included nearly 4 million such quills.

Therefore, although there were geese on the Monticello farm

http://classroom.monticello.org/kids/gallery/image/211/Pages-from-Martha-Wayles-Jeffersons-account-book/

and it's reasonable to assume that's where the quill came from, it's equally reasonable to assume it was one of the Russian quills. The Library of Russian-American Cooperation is no less an anecdotal source of history than some Hubber named Bits n' Pieces.

The point is that Obama didn't simply pull the allegation out of his butt. There is easily as much documentation supporting the Russian origin of the quill as its being from Monticello, unless you've got something more concrete.

Catherine Fitzpatrick

My, some people will stop at nothing to suck up to Obama and the Russians! Disgraceful.

Apparently the goose quill pen used isn't available today for forensic analysis to settle this, and might not be able to settle it anyway.

I never heard of anyone named "Hubber" and you can see many references in Google to the idea that the pen came from Jefferson's farm.

I think I'll trust common sense and logic, not only anecdotes, that indicates that Americans would use pens made from sources closest to home.

Of course it's reasonable to assume the pens came from Jefferson's farm or some other nearby farm.

Nobody *did* come up with the googse-quill shill as a political stunt before, no.

If there is some record in this "Russian American Library" so what? You might have been honest enough to admit that this library is a Russian government body:

*The Russian Cultural Centre is an agency of the Russian government and the official home of
Russian culture in the United States.*

I didn't realize Russian culture in the U.S. needed an official home, but there it is. Clearly, it's a propaganda arm of the Kremlin, judging from the site, and not merely one more source of anecdotes like somebody's blog. Shame on you.

Judging from the benefactors of this library, which include the current American ambassador and Lockheed (!), which benefits from hugely profitable deals with Russia and benefited from the reset in particular, again, so what if *they* make this claim? It's not a source and it's not sound. It comes from the same place as Obama's speech writer -- a place that desires to suck up to Obama and suck up to the Russians at any cost.

In their propagandistic website, this outfit says they are "researching" the question of the goose quill pen. At least they don't view it as a done deal -- but it's a provocation nonetheless.

So what if there were 1,320 commercial voyages?! There isn't any evidence *you* have cited that Americans "tended to use turkey features" which were "inferior" and were somehow "unable" to make goose quill pens. Sounds like a total bridge too far to me that is reached for deliberately for the most smarmiest and suspect of reasons.

My, those Russian traders sound ambitious and prosperous! Just think of what they might have accomplished had the Communists not massacred them in large numbers, forced them to flee, or collectivized them, and crippled free enterprise for decades. That's what cultural centers should be researching.

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