doug foxvog wrote:
> On Tue, March 15, 2011 10:22, Simon Spero said:
>> On Mar 15, 2011 1:26 AM, "doug foxvog" <doug@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
>>> "The War of 1812 lasted from 1812 to 1815."
>>> "The duration of the War of 1812 was from 1812 to 1815."
>>> "The US & UK fought from 1812 to 1815."
>> Minor but possibly relevant issues with the last paraphrase: the major
>> actors in the event included Canada. (Implicature).
> Of course, Canada was a set of UK colonies at the time. On the US
> invasions of Canada, they fought British forces.
And to be quite correct, the political entity was known in the time as
"Great Britain", and not yet the "United Kingdom", with the term
"British Empire" intervening. Canada achieved Dominion status (self
rule within the Empire) in 1867. (02)
It is worth noting that the Americans, ostensibly being allied to
Napoleon in the time, expected to find support among the Quebecois, but
the militia of Quebec fought loyally (and well) for Great Britain. (03)
>> Also, fighting between us and uk forces was discontinuous, and
>> (accidentally) continued one day after the end of the War.
> Wars and the fighting of wars are discontinuous in space and time.
> This is true of many other sorts of events, as well. A good ontology
> of events would represent this.
This is a problem. While the _fighting_ of wars is historically
discontinuous in space and time, the _state_ of war is continuous, from
a military, diplomatic and economic point of view. And there are many
other situations that have this problem in terms of relating a concept
of occurrences to actualities in space/time. (05)
A recent example is a company that maintains a continuous supply of
parts over a time period, even though the suppliers and contracts change
over that time period. The state 'there exists a supplier to company C
for part P' holds -- the proposition remains true -- even if the
existential is satisfied over the time period by different instances S1,
S2, ... of 'supplier'. (06)
Similarly, the War of 1812 existed officially from the declaration of
war by the United States until the signing of the peace treaty in 1815,
but as a set of occurrences of operations, each of which involved
periods of preparation, periods of actual battle, and periods of retreat
and recovery. The war at sea, for example, consisted entirely of
sorties by individual warships (commerce raiders and escorts), with the
exception of the British invasion of 1814 and the Battle of Lake Erie
(which involved the sorriest fleets either nation ever fielded). (07)
For the OMG Date/Time ontology, we decided it was better to think of
events as concepts/relations that are instantiated in 4D space/time by
'occurrences' of states, rather than as truth of propositions. Put
another way, you get propositions that are both true and false over some
historical interval, and it is more workable to think of them as
formulas that define relations rather than formulas that are propositions. (08)
>> [ The war was a failed attempt to seize Canada
> It included such attempts. It involved other issues on both sides,
> but those are not matters of discussion in this forum.
Indeed. It was an intersection of different political agendas in the
U.S. Congress and in the Executive. In addition to the jingoist desire
to conquer Canada, there was the impact of Britain's dominance of the
seas on U.S. oceangoing commerce and the lumber, cotton and tobacco
> An ontology used for representing the war would need to specify
> subevents of the war, charges made by different parties to the war,
> and relationships between subevents of the main event and other events
> that are not considered to be part of the main event. Representing
> contexts would be important, as what are viewed as facts by one party
> are viewed as false by another.
The idea of 'subevents' is definitely in the eye of the beholder. The
same situation in space/time can satisfy many 'event' concepts.
Strictly speaking 'A is a subevent of B' should mean that the
proposition whose instantaneous truth characterizes event A _entails_
the proposition whose instantaneous truth characterizes event B. By
comparison, the use of 'subevent' here probably refers to some
ill-defined part/whole relationship, and many of those come dangerously
close to 'post hoc' interpretations (more accurately 'inter hoc':
'during' implies 'part of'). (012)
>> whilst British forces were
>> engaged in the Peninsular Campaign to liberate (013)
a word that reveals one Anglo bias, one not in fact shared by
Wellington, who saw the Peninsular Campaign as a perfect example of
Clausewitz's maxim: War is politics conducted by other means. (014)
>> Spain and Portugal, and
>> Napoleon was still in the thick black part of the graph.
>> The war was pushed on the country by the western-most regions and opposed
>> by everyone near a coastline.
> Certainly not *everyone*.
Exactly. In fact, the set of persons whose livelihood or fortune was
based on oceangoing commerce tended to live and work near a coastline,
perforce, and supported the war in large numbers. The jingoists were
for the most part in the states that bordered Canada, but they were
joined by others from Virginia and North Carolina who had visions of an
American Empire. (016)
>> After the first exile, the Royal Navy were free to transport and sustain
>> battle hardened Marines and other forces, leading to the unfortunate
>> events of Aug 24th.
Well, every cloud has its silver lining. One result was the
construction of the ring of forts around Washington in the 1830s, one of
which, Fort Totten, was built across the 1814 avenue of invasion (the
Bladensburg Pike, aka New York Avenue). Another of them stopped Jubal
Early's attack on Washington in 1864. (It is worth noting that Early
marched down the same road that Dolly Madison and the Whitehouse staff
used to escape in 1814 -- the 7th Street Pike, now called Georgia
Avenue. Early was stopped at Fort Stevens, now the site of Walter Reed
Army Medical Center, just inside the point that is the top of the DC
> (inRetaliationFor BuringOfWashington BurningOfYorkCanada)
> -- doug foxvog
>> This was just what the opponents of the war had expected.]
>> Simon // Up Grads and at 'em
> doug foxvog doug@xxxxxxxxxx http://ProgressiveAustin.org
> "I speak as an American to the leaders of my own nation. The great
> initiative in this war is ours. The initiative to stop it must be ours."
> - Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
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