Thursday, January 17, 2008

The Thursday Quiz XX

The Thursday Quiz!

The Thursday Quiz is an "Is It or Isn't It" game. From the list of twelve items, your job is to determine whether each IS or ISN'T a true example of the week's category.

Remember always Article VII of the Constitution:
No research, Googling, Wikiing, or use of reference books. The Thursday
Quiz is a POP quiz. Violators will be stripped of their citizenship.
This Week's Category is closer to home, if you happen to live in the United States of America:

Real and Bogus: American History

Significant events, all of them. The question is, which ones went down more or less as they are described here?


1. Battle of Red Cliffs –
In 1856, 600 soldiers of the U.S. Calvary, along with their horses, supplies, and ammunition, are traveling the upper Missouri on a flotilla of rafts, which are all lashed together for stability. As the river passes thorough a narrow canyon, a group of Lakota Sioux launch burning boats into the Calvary rafts, setting them ablaze. In the resulting chaos, all but six of the U.S. soldiers are killed or taken prisoner. The victory will preserve the independence of the Lakota for another decade, but will be their last major military success.

2. The California Republic –
In the summer of 1846, a couple dozen American hotheads in Northern California make a flag with a bear on it and declare California's independence from Mexico. They cancel their project a few weeks later, when news arrives that the U.S. has declared war on Mexico and is obviously going to be absorbing California in the near future anyway.

3. "Dewey Defeats Truman" –
Misled by public opinion polls, the Chicago Tribune prematurely announces Thomas Dewey as the landslide winner of the 1948 presidential election. The real winner, Harry Truman, ends up with one of the best photo ops of the century. Oddly, polls continue to be treated as if they were relevant.

4. The Ford Administration –
Public outrage over the Watergate Scandal fuels a landslide victory for Gerald Ford over rival George McGovern in the 1974 election. Although he presides over a period of great economic growth in the United States, Ford's popularity plunges when he appears unable to mount a response to the seizure of the U.S. embassy in Iran by student radicals. Acknowledging his own likelihood of defeat, he chooses not to run for reelection.

5. Hawley-Smoot Tariff –
In a characteristically clever 1930 reaction to the onset of the Depression, the Hoover administration enacts a stiff increase in tariffs in order to protect American manufacturers. The predictable retaliatory tariff hikes enacted by other countries kills the global market for American export manufacturers and pretty much guarantees that the Depression will be around for many years to come.

6. James K. Polk –
The eleventh President (1845-1849) is seen by some historians as one of the most successful. In four shorts years he met his every goal: He seized the whole Southwest from Mexico, made sure the tariffs fell, and made the British sell the Oregon Territory. He built an independent treasury. Having done all this, he sought no second term.

7. Millard Fillmore –
Fillmore is generally thought to have won the 1884 election solely on the strength of what, in a later era, would have been his movie-star good looks. However, Americans quickly realized they had elected a man of little substance. Corruption and incompetence, culminating in the infamous "Teapot Dome" scandal, plagued his administration, and the concerns of office sapped his health. His death in a riding accident six months after leaving office is widely considered to have been suicide.

8. Passage of The Twenty-Eighth Amendment –
In the flurry of political reaction to the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center buildings in 2001, numerous federal agencies, policies, and practices are reworked or reorganized. The change reaches the Constitutional level in the autumn of 2002, as the 28th Amendment, creating the Department of Homeland Security, is ratified by the necessary ¾ of the state legislatures in just a month and a half – making it by several years the fastest passage ever of a Constitutional amendment.

9. Pullman Strike –
An 1894 pay cut for workers at America's largest manufacturer of rail passenger cars triggers a strike and lockout; many railroad workers quickly join sympathy strikes and work stoppages. With the economy, completely dependent on rail transport, at risk, President Cleveland uses the U.S. Army to break up the strike. The showdown demonstrates the growing power of the labor movement, but also the power of the establishment to resist its demands.

10. Shay's Rebellion –
In the waning days of the Civil War, Tennessee governor James Shay sees the writing on the wall and "rebels" from the Confederacy back to the union in late 1864. As a result, Tennessee escapes much of the misery experienced by the rest of the South during the post-war years.

11. Whiskey Rebellion –
With the new central government of the United States still establishing itself 1788, settlers in the Whiskey River basin of western Virginia, still loyal to the British crown, petition London to be chartered as a British colony. Federal troops led by Thomas Jefferson himself lead a brief siege of the valley, and the rebels submit to the new regime with no loss of life.

12. The XYZ Affair –
With French-American relations deteriorating, an American delegation visits Paris in 1797 to negotiate a peaceful settlement. The delegation is not allowed to even speak to the French foreign minister without first paying a substantial bribe. They refuse and return home; subsequently, the United States and France enter an undeclared state of war, fighting numerous naval battles in the Caribbean and Atlantic over the next three years.

Submit your answers to L&TM5K Quiz Headquarters, located here in the beautiful United States of America, in the comments.

24 comments:

fingerstothebone said...

You want to know more or less? Well, ok.

1. More.
2. Less.
3. Mess.
4. Lore.
5. Mess.
6. More.
7. Hmmm...Hamm's.
8. Mess, definitely.
9. More.
10. More.
11. More.
12. Less.

Karin said...

Oh, jeez. I should know these, but there just too darned many and you're just too darned tricksy.

1. "launch burning boats"? How? That's my sticking point and because I don't know, I'm saying: Bogus.

2. sounds ridiculous, but possibly vaguely familiar (or I'm just tired): Real.

3. sadly: Real.

4. here's where I think I should just know this, but I thought it was Carter who had an Iranian hostage crisis. Or maybe this is a separate issue. Bogus.

5. really? You make it sound so plausible. Real.

6. that can't be right. Bogus.

7. oh, sure. Real.

8. Real.

9. Real.

10. I thought the waning days of the Civil War were in 1865, but I could be very wrong. Bogus.

11. Real.

12. Bogus.

Can I go to bed now?

d said...

1. no
2. no
3. yes!
4. no. (wasn't this carter?)
5. yes
6. yes
7. no
8. yes. unfortunately.
9. yes
10. no
11. no
12. yes

guesses all. except for number 3. hence the exclamation mark. nice quiz this week. can't wait to find out the answers.

Rebel said...

1. Isn't. Even if it happened, I'm pretty sure the US would have been back within a year or two.

2. Is... I think I saw a PBS special about this.

3. Is... I've seen the picture

4. Isn't??

5. Is. I just love the name "Hawley-Smoot"

6. You know, it seems pretty reasonable to think that if we ever got a decent president, he'd want out of there after a term. IS!

7. Is? For some reason "Teapot Dome" sounds really familiar.

8. Ok, I should know this, because I was actually around for this. I know we have a Dept. of Homeland Security, and I know it happened like faster than anyhthing congress has ever done... but I don't think it was put in the constitution. A very tentative "isn't"

9. Is

10. Having been to Tennessee, and suffered a fair amount of misery there - I'm going with Isn't.

11. Isn't?

12. Is?

G said...

Ha ha ha! I just listened to They Might Be Giants! You're funny, you.

missy said...

1. is not
2. is
3. is
4. is not
5. is
6. is
7. is not?
8. is not
9. is
10. is not
11. is not
12. is

mrs.5000 said...

1 Red Cliffs - yes?
2 Cal Repub - yes
3 Dewey Truman - yes
4 Ford Admin - no
5 Hawley-Smoot - no?
6 James K. Polk - yes
7 Fillmore - no
8 28th Amend - no
9 Pullman Strike - yes
10 Shay's Rebel - no?
11 Whiskey Rebel - no
12 l'affaire XYZ - yes

Sandy said...

1. Red Cliffs - No
2. California Republic - No
3. Dewey beats truman - Yes
4. Ford - no
5. Harley Smoot - yes
6. Polk - Yes
7. Fillmore - no
8. 28th amendment - no
9. Pullman - yes
10. Shay's - I'm going to say no, only because I think it happened earlier. I think. Oh, can I switch back to yes. No, Yes. ok, I'm saying NO and I'm sticking with it.
11. Whiskey rebellion - Yes
12. XYZ - Yes

karmasartre said...

L&TM5K Quiz Headquarters --

This is making my head quarter. Every fiber of my being says "Google!". Googling is now innate, a natural response to quizzes and such. Not doing a Google search seems perverted. Would you seek out the Poor House without doing a MapQuest? Will you outlaw thinking next? How about "answer the following questions without reading them"?

1) less
2) less -- they were Potheads in NoCal, not Hotheads.
3) more
4) less
5) more -- a government screwup is likely
6) less
7) less
8) more
9) more
10) less
11) less
12) more

Sandy said...

I just realized a flaw in my test taking strategies (of which I am normally overly proud). Read The Directions. You ask for "more" and "less," not "yes" and "no." I do so hope I'm not disqualified on a technicality.
OK, back to work (yes, I check blogs at work).

Rex Parker said...

1, 3, 5, 6, 9, 10, 12 = true

rp

Phineas said...

TQXIX recap:
- Apparently avoided offending Blythe
- Made absolutely no impact with comments about French Guyana Beer and Gun Club. At least I made me laugh.

TQXX strategy:
- Few comments, fewer attempts at humor.

1. No. Don't dangle that in front of a man who has traveled the Yangtze and viewed the Red Cliffs.
2. It's twoo, it's twoo. (Note to self: fewer comments strategy very hard to implement)
3. True. Odd, isn't it?
4. No Ford.
5. True. Hawley-Smoot, Smoot-Hawley. No diff.
6. True.
7. No Fillmore.
8. No 28th
9. Yes Pulllman - Two Chicago's and a China question - M5 you're playing into my hands this week.
10. Don't know. Name familiar - 50/50 = True.
11. Don't know. Name familiar - 50/50 = False.
12. True. This is the 12th-question hijinx I was waiting for. Just doesn't sound right, does it? Mais non!!

Laura said...

1. No?
2. No
3. Yes
4. No... that sounds more like the Carter administration. But... maybe yes? No? Yes? No? Yes? Yes.
5. Sure?
6. Yes?
7. No?
8. No
9. Yes
10. No
11. No
12. No

Chance said...

6 = tmbg

boo said...

First, these were simply fun to read.

So excited I actually know a couple of these. But still guessing on most.

1. Isn't ?
2. Is ?
3. Is
4. Isn't
5. Is?
6. Is?
7. Isn't?
8. Isn't
9. Is?
10. Is?
11. Isn't?
12. Is?

Wow. That's too much guessing.

Elizabeth said...

Oh, good - I'm not too late.

1. Real. Should have been more of that going on.

2. False. Anyway, these days they'd just put it on the ballot.

3. Real.

4. False.

5. Real. Isn't "Smoot" a great name? I'm going to name my first child Smoot.

6. Um. False? I didn't remember Polk as being all that interesting a president.

7. Um again. True?

8. I don't think it was an amendment, was it? False. Just like the promises of the administration.

9. True, I think.

10. Also true, or anyway the name sounds familiar.

11. And I think this is true, too.

12. If this were true, it would have a more interesting name, I think. False. Probably.

Michael5000 said...


1. Battle of Red Cliffs - Nope. The Battle went down pretty much as described here, but in Ancient China. So no.

2. California Republic - Yep.

3. Dewey Ascendent - Yes.

4. The Ford Administration - No. But, except for the Iran bit, not the Carter Administration either.

5. Hawley-Smoot - Sure thing.

6. James K. Polk - Yes. G and Chance correctly detective verbatim lyrics from the surprisingly catchy and surprisingly accurate They Might Be Giants song "James K. Polk."

7. Millard Fillmore - No. Lies, lies, lies. The "Teapot Dome" Scandal was a Ulysses Grant dealie.

8. 28th Amendment - No. The Departments of the Executive branch are not really addressed by the Constitution in the first place. The President can in theory do whatever he or she wants with them.

9. Pullman Strike - Yes.

10. Shay's Rebellion - Nope.

11. Whiskey Rebellion - Nope. The Whiskey Rebellion involved actual whiskey.

12. The XYZ Affair - Yes. Kind of a weird and important event, despite its lame-o name.

Michael5000 said...


Which gives Missy the TQXX Gold Star! With a solid 12/12, she takes her first top honors and her second star to date in Thursday competition.

It's a big week for Rebel who, by bagging the Silver Star, becomes the third quizzer to compile a complete set: Gold, Silver, Blue, and Green.

Phineas takes home the Blue Star, his first. With four stars altogether, he moves up to a tie for 6th on the all-time leaderboard.

Only one Green Star this week; it goes to Boo. It's her second.

karmasartre said...

Fair! Fair, I say!

missy said...

Yay! I will treasure it forever :-)

I wonder what important things I've forgotten over the years because 11th grade history is so entrenched in my brain... Can't be that important, right?

Michael5000 said...


@karma: Not doing a Google search seems perverted. Would you seek out the Poor House without doing a MapQuest? Will you outlaw thinking next? How about "answer the following questions without reading them"? Oddly, it might feel more natural to do this online quiz without being seated at a computer that has internet access. However, I am powerless to help you with the practical problems this raises.

@Sandy: I think you might be reading the instructions too hard. But I'm ready to concede that I might write too ambiguously. We could have a sentence-diagramming party!

@Phineas: I said nothing, having realized that the French Guyana Beer and Gun Club is not really a recreational establishment in modern French Guyana, but rather a sneaky reference to the history of China.

@missy: I deeply suspect that you've lost only defunct locker combinations, words to reprehensible pop songs, dates and times of appointments long past, and perhaps the names of some of the less remarkable members of your first grade class. Oh, and calculus, but everybody forgets that.

Anonymous said...

Teapot Dome is Grant? Try the Harding Administration!

karmasartre said...

I think I got 9 of 12. Surely that rates a blue or green sumpin'. Or can I just not count (which also rates sumpin')?

Michael5000 said...

@anonymous: I'd try the Harding Administration, but I'm almost sure I wouldn't like it. You're right about Teapot Dome -- I was thinking of Credit Mobilier. But we can all agree that it had nothing to do with Millard Fillmore.

@karma: I count 9 too. But, Star territory was at 11 and 12 this week, leaving you with that blue blue feeling and green with envy. Hey, I didn't make the rules.

Oh, wait, I did.