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March 13, 2015

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Page 2 POST-GAZETTE, MARCH 13, 2015 Stirpe Nostr,2L by Prof. EdmundTuriello Res Publica A weekly column highlighting some by David Trumbull of the more interesting aspects of our ancestry.., our lineage.., our roots. You Cannot Build Up by Tearing Down Aphrodite is most popu- larly known as the Greek goddess of Love. According to ancient tales she was the daughter of Zeus and the god- dess Dione. Legends tell us that Aphrodite first appeared to the mortal world as a goddess who was born out of the ocean foam and first stepped ashore on the island of Cyprus during Phoenician times. Initially, she was wor- shipped as the goddess of love but in later years her influence was extended to maritime traffic, tranquil seas, and prosperous voy- ages. Those mortals who were not seafaring people knew her as the goddess of spring, gardens, and groves. Notwithstanding all of the above, in the world of mythol- ogy Aphrodite showed her full power as the goddess of love and beauty. She was above all other goddesses in loveli- ness, grace, magic charms, and captivating beauty; irre- sistible to the wisest mortal and able to subdue any god. Even the legends surround- ing the Trojan War place Aphrodite in the events that lead to the hostilities. Eris, the goddess of discord threw a golden apple among the assembled goddesses. The apple was inscribed "For the fairest'. An ensuing quarrel between Aphrodite and the other goddesses was finally APHRODITE Aphrodite Pudica (Roman copy of 2nd century AD}, National Archaeological Museum. Athens referred to Paris, a shepherd on Mt. Ida, whose judgment was to be final. Each of the contestants offered gifts which were inte,nded to in- fluence Paris' decision. One goddess offered a kingdom, while another offered intel- lectual superiority, etc. The prize was finally assigned to Aphrodite who promised Paris the fairest woman in the land for his wife. Due to Aphrodite's delay in paying her debt, plus the co- incidence of Paris' voyage to Greece, advantage was taken of an opportunity to abduct the fair Helen, wife of Menelaus, a Spartan king. The Trojan War, as you know, was fought in order to secure the release of Helen and to return her to Menelaus. Mythology places Aphrodite as the wife of Hephaestus, smith of the gods, but there are also stories of notorious escapades with other gods. One such escapade with a member of Trojan royalty pro- duced Aeneas, who later be- came known as the ances- tor of the Roman race. Aphrodite became a favor- ite subject with the ancient artists, but Was represented in whatever mode suited their individual interest at that particular time. Early works showed this goddess clothed or draped, while in later years, she was gener- ally shown undraped, rising from the sea, or leaving her bath. Speaking of baths, ex- cuse me while I try to find some soap. Next Issue: Venus, the Roman Counterpart to Aphrodite Saint Matilda of Saxony by Bennett Molinart and Richard Molinari Matilda, also known as Mechtildis and Maud, was the daughter of Count Dietrich of Westphalia and Reinhild of Denmark. She was raised by her grandmother, the Abbess of Eufurt convent. Matilda married Henry the Fowler, son of Duke Otto of Saxony, in the year 909. Henry succeeded his father as Duke in the year 912 and in 919 he succeeded King Conrad I to the German throne. Matilda was noted for her piety and charitable works. She was widowed in the year 936, and supported her son Henry's claim to his father's throne. When her son Otto (the Great) was elected, she persuaded him to name Henry Duke of Bavaria after he had led an unsuccessful revolt. She Since 1969 FOR ALL YOUR INSURANCE NEEDS : ...... I RICHARD SETTIPANE  ;' Public Insurance Adjuster -+:, Experience makes the difference! +: ' : ' ? 2 ;i..; i:: ,:::: :2 209 BROADWAY, REVERE, MA 02151 !i:i)i;:%i: I:-I ):; Tel. 781.284.1100 Fax 781.284.2200 i:' 'i!::[i':!id):%++ . Boston 617.523.3456 ........ ,, rking Ad]acenUo Building I was severely criticized by both Otto and Henry for what they considered her extrava- gant charities. After her husband died in 936 at Memleben, Matilda and her son, now King Otto of East Francia, established Quedlinburg Abbey in his memory, in what is today Quedlinburg, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany. In 966 her grand- daughter, also named Mat- ilda, became Quidlinburg's first abbess. At first the Queen Mother remained at the court of her son; however, in the quarrels between the young king and his rivaling brother Henry, a group of royal advisors is reported to have accused Matilda of decreasing the royal treasury in order to pay for her charitable activi- ties. She resigned her inheritance to her sons, and retired to her country home in Westphalia where she established a college of canon& In 947, Matilda was brought back to court at the urging of King Otto's first wife, the Anglo-Saxon prin- cess Edith of Wessex. In 941, Henry again re- volted, this time Otto put down the insurrection with great cruelty. Matilda repri- manded Henry when he began another revolt against Otto in the year 953 and for (Continjaed on Page 4) yJ' A friend recently sent me a Huffington Post essay written by Cambridge's Robert Reich. I read things from Professor Reich from time to time and always end up at the same conclusion: Reich is smart and perceptive; he has a knack for finding a neglected truth that, once put into writing, seems so self-evident that you can't believe you missed it; but at the end he falters and fails into old left clich6s, debunked Keynesian economics, and 1930s Socialist cant. Reich in this piece "The Republican Shakedown" accuses Republicans of being tools for the rich, hoodwinking middle- class Americans (in the largely non-unionized private sector) into thinking that government and unions in the public sector are the cause of our economic stagna- tion under President Obama. Implied is a "divide and con- quer" theory of domination of the system by the rich and powerful. Certainly, I agree that setting one part of the middle class (private sector) against another (public sector) is not good for either. In the past we Americans had leaders, such as Ronald Reagan, who (quoting William John Henry Boetcker (1873-1962) proclaimed: "You cannot lift the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer.  To which I add: you cannot rise up private-sector workers by tearing down public- sector workers. And, from the article, it appears that Pro- fessor Reich agrees, so far. However, this is exactly where Reich, who is so percep- tive up to this point, goes on autopilot and lapses into socialist canards. His solution is not to stop trying to better yourself by tearing down someone better off, rather his answer is to tear down someone even better off. Aside from "the question of whether "soaking the rich" is sound policy economically or ethically, Reich's flawed conclusion -- we need substantial tax increases on the rich -- is absolutely refuted by his argument. On the one hand he says the prob- lem is that the rich have distorted and broken the system. On the other hand he says the answer is higher taxes on the rich. But if the rich have the inordinate influence he says, then won't they simply use it to corrupt the tax code in their favor? The answer is not to tear down the rich but to build up the middle class. To do that we need to rebuild our manu- facturing economy, and to do that we need to press the "reset" button on our trade policy and reject the free trade agreement with Communist Vietnam that President Obama is pursuing. We also need to embrace a trade policy which includes provisions to offset the value added taxes of our trading partners and a tariff that compensates for some trading partners' illegal currency manipulation. Rather than Professor Reich's "shakedown" what we need is a SHAKE-UP in Washington, and the Republicans may be the only ones who can do it. NOBILE INSURANCE ALBANO F. PONTE, CEP Financial and Estate Planning Email afponte @ Phone 617-320-0022 MICHAEL F. NOBILE, CPCU mnobile @ BOSTON 30 Prince Street Boston, MA 02113 (617) 523-6766 Fax (617) 523-0078 MEDFORD 39 Salem Street Medford, MA 02155 (781) 395-4200 Fax (781) 391-8493 J The Federal mmission works for lhe cnsumer to prevent fraud and deception. visit WWW.FrC.GOV