Monday, March 26, 2012

"Politics and the History Curriculum" is now available for advance sales

The Palgrave Macmilian website has this listing which isn't very informative:

Amazon has this listing which tells a little bit more:

And this is the link at Barnes & Nobles:

However, Keith Erekson's page is the most informative I have found so far:

There is also this flyer for the book which describes the contents.

You will notice in the flyer that yours truly is the author of the chapter on the teaching of the Civil War and Reconstruction.

The following are the book blurbs by distinguished scholars:

"What's the matter with Texas? Outsiders too often dismiss it as an overgrown and ignorant child, shrouded in right-wing politics and fundamentalist religion. But that view is itself a gross caricature, as this close study of history and myth-making in Texas demonstrates. Rooting their story firmly in the social and political history of the Lone Star State, Keith A. Erekson and his colleagues bust a few big myths themselves. Read this book if you want to understand why Texans continue to contest their shared past, and why the rest of us should stop condescending to them." --Jonathan Zimmerman, professor of Education and History, New York University

"In these behind-the-scene essays, history educators and all citizens interested in history education will find chilling accounts of how the conservative Christian right played power politics to ensure that young Texans learn a largely white-washed U.S. history while remaining uneducated about world history. The essays in this important book give voice to teachers and history professors who were steamrollered by the Texas Board of Education."--Gary Nash, Professor Emeritus, Department of History, UCLA; Director, National Center for History in the Schools

"Politics and the History Curriculum offers the most comprehensive, thought-provoking, and timely examination yet of the ongoing controversy over history standards in Texas and across the nation. As an historian and textbook author, I especially appreciate the range and analytical quality of the essays collected here. This book is a must-read for any teacher, administrator, or citizen engaged with these issues." --Daniel Czitrom, co-author, Out of Many: A History of the American People

The book is to be released June 2012.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Former Sons of Confederate Veterans Commander-in-Chief accused of defrauding investors, Updated

Ron Wilson, one time columnist for the Council of Conservative Citizens and former Commander-in-Chief of the Sons of Confederate Veterans is accused of defrauding investors according to two news articles at the Independent Mail of Anderson, SC in an article titled, "Attorney general: Ron Wilson defrauded silver customers."

The articles are online at:

And another is online at:

Quoting from the first article:

Former Anderson County Council member Ron Wilson told securities investigators he had at least $16.9 million of his customers’ silver in a Delaware depository, according to a complaint from the state attorney general.

But the complaint says the depository had no records of Wilson, his company or the silver.

The complaint says that Wilson and his company, Atlantic Bullion & Coin, collected millions of dollars from customers who thought they were buying silver but when customers wanted to cash out there was no silver in their accounts or the accounts had been altered.

A Complaint has been filed by the Attorney General's office. According to the article:

Five violations of the state’s security laws are alleged in the complaint, including making false claims under oath and the fraudulent sale of securities.


State Senior Assistant Attorney General Tracy Meyers requested Monday that prosecutors or a state grand jury take up a case against Wilson, according to a criminal referral request provided by the state attorney general’s office.

Evidently this isn't a new problem with Ron Wilson, the article reports:

Wilson kept selling the investments in South Carolina, and 24 other states, after agreeing in writing in 1996 to stop selling securities or similar investments because he was not a licensed broker or agent, according to state documents he signed.

The 1996 consent order signed by Wilson says he and any successors or representatives “are prohibited from making or causing to be made to any person or entity in South Carolina any offers or sales of securities by means of any false or fraudulent sales practices.”

In the second article one of the United Daughters of the Confederacy officer quips, "There is no silver lining in this." I always love a good humorist. Good for her.

Wilson used to run full page ads for his firm "Atlantic Bullion and Coin" in neo-Confederate publications.

It will be interesting what Wilson will say to his defrauded customers. Will he claim that an evil cabal of DC empire builders stole it, or it was a frame up by Obama and his minions?

The interesting thing about people in these right wing organizations is that they seem to be the targets of people selling investments. When they aren't being sold something as an investment to evade the New World Order or some imagined nemesis, they are being sold various quack health remedies. Some conspiracy is suppressing some health remedy and the persons advocating the conspiracy advocate some thing or food that you can purchase to cure what ails you. (Update: One website I am monitoring is selling a machine which generates electricity without inputs, essentially a perpetual motion machine, and also offering to sell gold wholesale.)

One thing that has to be asked is why it took 16 years for the South Carolina Attorney General's office to realize that Ron Wilson was violated an agreement to desist from selling securities. Lots of people suffering heavy losses.


I will update this as information becomes available.

More on this scandal:

Secret Service hauling off boxes of records.

Another article on the scamming.

Legislature decides to close barn door after horses have left department.

Class-action suit: Lawyer conned by Wilson thinking of class action suit.

Thursday, March 08, 2012

4th and Final Installment on the article on the Museum of (for) the Confederacy published on Black Commentator

The 4th and final installment of of a series of articles on the Museum of(for) the Confederacy (MOC) is now online at:

This article revisits critically the exhibit Before Freedom Came and the book associated with it. It recounts a visit by a distinguished person with museum expertise to the MOC. It examines how trivia and artifacts are used to obscure the story of the Confederacy. It examines how the MOC has co-opted the history profession.

This last installment also asks that the history profession in the future not accept awards from the MOC and those who have received repudiate them. Whether many or even a few historians in the future repudiate or refuse an award from the MOC isn't so important as the fact from now on when a historian accepts or retains an award from the MOC this historian is taking a stand and revealing their identity.

All the previous installments can be seen at:

Sunday, March 04, 2012

The Museum of the Confederacy as a shrine and creator of Confederate identity

The third installment of my 4-part article on the Museum of the Confederacy has been published.

The URL for the guest copy which is free is:

The 1st installment covered the take over of the MOC by pro-Confederates and how the MOC works with neo-Confederate organizations. The 2nd installment covers how the MOC glorifies Confederate leaders. The 3rd installment covers how the MOC creates Confederate identification amongst its supporters, visitors, and others by being a shrine and reliquary.

The links to the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd installments are in this blog posting:

In the above blog posting I will have links to all four installments after they all come out. I expect the 4th installment to be published fairly soon. The installment is with the publisher.

The 4th installment discusses the exhibit and book "Before Freedom Came" and shows how the book and show is deeply flawed and how it avoids connecting slavery to the Confederacy. It shows how the MOC represents itself differently to different audiences acting professional before professional audiences and being neo-Confederate acting towards other audiences.

It discusses how the MOC tries to co-opt the history profession and is rather successful in doing so, and ends with a call for previous winners of the MOC awards to repudiate them and for historians in the future to reject them.
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