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A New Calvary at Nagasaki and the Awful Responsibility of Power

King Philip the 2nd of Spain has sent Jesuits to convert the Japanese, but the Japanese leaders find the whole business annoying. All Christians are expelled from Japan. The few that refuse to go are marched barefoot 600 miles from Kyoto to Nagasaki as a warning to others. As a result, EVEN MORE Japanese want to convert, but the leadership can't stop now. They gather some timber and, in the manner of the original Calvary, the Christians are crucified on a hill overlooking Nagasaki. Paulo Miki is the son of a wealthy Japanese family. He forgives his tormentors and spends his last hours preaching a sermon from the cross. (And yes... the guards actually poke the bodies with spears. The only thing these guards don't do is sing "Oh Holy Night" and gamble for Paulo's robes.) Paulo Miki and his fellow martyrs will be canonized by Pope Paul the 9th in 1862. [1] [2]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
I realize the tragic significance of the atomic bomb ... It is an awful responsibility which has come to us ... We thank God that it has come to us, instead of to our enemies; and we pray that He may guide us to use it in His ways and for His purposes.
-- President Harry S. Truman, August 9, 1945
Nagasaki became the largest Christian city in Japan, but why did the United States drop the atomic bomb on Nagasaki? Actually, the primary target, Kokura, was masked in clouds. Nagasaki was clear that day. Kaboom. Three Japanese men in a small trainer flew into the mushroom cloud just to see what it was like. The pilot opened his window and stuck his hand out. It glowed. Another man got a face full of radioactive dust. The third just screamed in pain. The pilot flew out of the cloud and landed. The three men walked into the holocaust of Nagasaki to see if they could help. The young pilot lived a reasonably long life. The other two, not so much, but with full exposure to radioactive dust, they lived. Take that Fukushima! [3] [4]

Your Papers, Please... A License to Beg

There are clear indications that begging has risen to the point that some cities, like Amsterdam, are issuing licenses to beggars. In Vienna, foreigners need a registration card to identify themselves. Surprisingly few unlicensed beggars are sent to prison: about 2.7 percent of men and 3.7 percent of women. Prison sentences are short: less than 4 months. Those who are sent to the work-houses are sent to "Rasp House" to turn wood into sawdust if they are men. Women are sent to the "Spin House". Public officials are certainly tracking foreigners, so that a city won't become a magnet for the poor. [5] [6] [7]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
Basic good character seemed to be the criteria for whether you were sent to prison or the work-houses and not whether this was your 1st, 2nd or 22nd time you were caught. This suggests that begging was considered normal and unavoidable because there was no work, and there hadn't been work for a long time. When begging becomes the norm, a debilitating process is set into motion that must be stopped.

As Benjamin Franklin said...

I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it. In my youth I travelled much, and I observed in different countries, that the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer. And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer.

'If Money Go Before, All Ways Do Lie Open' *

English theater is temporarily shutdown because it is a breeding ground for sedition, stolen goods and seduction. Yes. English theater is lots of fun! Queen Elizabeth loves Shakespeare's new play, The Merry Wives of Windsor. The Lord Mayor of London is less impressed. Modern critics think it is Shakespeare's worst play, but the play itself is a moving target. It seems that it was meant to be modified, with inside jokes and lines changing to fit the audience (and skirt the law). The Lord Mayor calls a halt to all plays inside and outside of London because a criminal confessed that he was fencing stolen goods at the theater taken from the Portuguese ship the Madre de Deus. The Mayor gets the inns within London to suspend performances, but he has no authority outside of London. Nevertheless, those playhouses outside of London shutdown in deference to his order... sort of. July is their slow time anyway. [8] [9] [10]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
In reality, a new theater group has formed under the sponsorship of the Earl of Pembroke. The actors broke away from the Lord Admiral at the Rose Theater. Legally speaking, the actors were listed as servants of the lord who sponsored them. Otherwise the actors would have been arrested for vagrancy. Strangely, the Lord Admiral signed the order shutting down the theaters. Since the Earl was not on the Privy Council he had no say and may have been temporarily damaged by this shutdown. It is a matter of speculation amongst experts. It looks as if theater politics intertwined with political politics at the highest levels due to this requirement for lordly sponsorship. In other words, it was about personalities, politics and money. The shutdown was intermittent and not well enforced. [11]

This Year on Wikipedia

Year 1597, Wikipedia.

See Also


* The asterisk in the section header indicates that it was read on the podcast.
  1. Madeline Duntley (December 2000). Japanese and Filipino Together: The Transethnic Vision of Our Lady Queen of Martyrs Parish. U.S. Catholic Historian. 18. Catholic University of America Press. pp. 74-98. http://www.jstor.org/stable/25154705. 
  2. Paulo Miki - Wikipedia (2015). Retrieved on 23 June 2015. “Miki arrested and jailed with his fellow Catholics were later forced to march TT 6 kilometres (600 miles) from Kyoto to Nagasaki; all the while singing the Te Deum. On arriving in Nagasaki—which today has the largest Catholic population in Japan—Miki was crucified on February 5, 1597. He preached his last sermon from the cross, and it is maintained that he forgave his executioners, stating that he himself was Japanese.”
  3. Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster - Wikipedia (2015). Retrieved on 23 June 2015. “The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster was a nuclear disaster at the Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant that began on 11 March 2011 and resulted in a nuclear meltdown of three of the plant's six nuclear reactors.”
  4. John Toland. The Rising Sun: The Decline and Fall of the Japanese Empire 1936-1945. Random House. 
  5. Historical Timeline of Vienna (PDF). Expat Center Vienna. 2014 [last update] (TIMELINE) Quote: "1597 Registration card required for foreigners, revolt of wine growers."
  6. Pieter Spierenburg. Prisoners and Beggars: Quantitative Data on Imprisonment in Holland and Hamburg, 1597-1752. Historical Social Research / Historische Sozialforschung. 15. GESIS-Leibniz-Institute for the Social Sciences, Center for Historical Social Research. pp. 33-56. http://www.jstor.org/stable/20754529. 
  7. Alex Shrugged notes: OK... this begging stuff is a little difficult to document everywhere. That is why I say there are "indications" but I hate being wishy-washy when I write so I am apologizing in the footnotes for being bold above.
  8. William Ingram (November 1971). The Closing of the Theaters in 1597: A Dissenting View. Modern Philology. 69. The University of Chicago Press. pp. 105-115. http://www.jstor.org/stable/436757. "It was sufficient for Chambers's purposes to demonstrate that a public playhouse could be a convenient meeting place for disposers and receivers of stolen goods.". 
  9. Barbara Freedman (June 1994). Shakespearean Chronology, Ideological Complicity, and Floating Texts: Something is Rotten in Windsor. Shakespeare Quarterly. 45. George Washington University. pp. 190-210. http://www.jstor.org/stable/2871217. "Finally, how could this most topical of comedies have led our most reliable scholars to date the play as early as 1592 and as late as 1602 and have led current editors of the play to bicker between dates of composition as early as 1597 and as late as 1601?". 
  10. Lawrence Manley (March 2008). Why Did London Inns Function as Theaters?. Huntington Library Quarterly. 71. University of California Press. pp. 181-197. http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1525/hlq.2008.71.1.181.. "In 1597, an order from the Lord Mayor called for the 'fynall suppressing' of stage plays at 'the Theatre, Curtain, and Bankside, as in all other places inand about the Citie' (italics mine); on the same date, the Privy Council wrote in response to the Justices of Middlesex, calling for the destruction of the suburban theaters, but the Council seemed to leave open the possibility of continued playing at inns, stating only that 'no plays shalbe used within London [italics mine] or about the Citty . . . during this time of sommer' or "until Allhallontide next.'". 
  11. Alex Shrugged notes: Just a disclaimer... my son is the expert on theater. I dabble. He's not available to consult at the moment so I did my best to read what the experts had to say and summarized what I thought were the major points but the experts seem to disagree. If I put in every conditional statement required to make this a perfect segment, it would be ten times as long. So I gave you my best take as a non-expert. Your mileage may vary.

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