Tonight, on The American Experience, "Origins of the American Dream: America's First 4000 Years," narrated by David MacCollough. Produced by WGBH-TV, Boston, and underwritten by the Ford Motor Corporation. The American Experience is funded locally by viewers, like you. ...
(Wide-angle, pan shot of Washington, showing various memorials and monuments dedicated to the heroes of American history.)
(Cut to narrator David MacCollough, walking along the Reflecting Pool of the Mall.)
MacCollough: "Long before the Golden Age of Democracy, when America came to rule the world; long before the early Republic that overthrew the tyranny of the King; long before American commerce reached out its mighty hands to encircle the globe; long before baseball, hot dogs, apple pie, and Chevrolet; long before the realization the American Dream; long before all this, there was a beginning!
"In the deep mists of Time, there must have been a beginning. Only in recent years have archeologists and ethnographers successfully deciphered pre-literary records to reveal the beginnings of American Civilization."
(Cut to Dr. Fleckenstein, Prof. Emeritus of Anthropology at the University of Chicago.) Fleckenstein: "The first 4000 years of American Civilization represents one of the most fascinating periods in American History. So much advancement, so much development that would define the American Dream as we know it today. We are only beginning to understand the profound ramifications of each and every little piece of evidence that archeologists have discovered in pre-historic Washington."
(Cut to MacCollough, standing in room 3a of the subterranean caves near Washington)
MacCollough: "Here in a subterranean world near Washington, archeologists have discovered pictographs of what must be the earliest beginnings of the American Dream. The oldest of these pictographs, dating to approximately 4000 b.c., shows a mythical leader of the American people, holding in his arms a pair of tablets containing the first known Code of Law of the American people; coincidentally, it has now been determined that this is also the first instance of the practical application of the Alphabet."
"A second pictograph, also dating from around 4000 b.c., shows the early American tribe fleeing from a great beast that resembles the modern day bison. Archeologists are still uncertain as to the meaning of this pictograph. Does it mean that early Americans were vegetarians? Or that they had a primeval fear of the color brown. The controversy rages in academic circles of the so-called 'Fleeing Buffalo' pictograph."
(Camera follows MacCollough as he leaves Room 3a and enters Room 6d).
"This next pictograph is of great historical significance. Dating from around 3950 b.c., in the so-called 'First Contact' pictograph, we see the American tribe approach another tribe; and the mythical leader of the Americans is shown demonstrating their Code of Laws. In the second part of the pictograph, the warriors of that tribe join with the American people, riding fierce machines of war drawn by beasts of burden."
(Cut to Prof. Hornswoggle, Chair of Anthropology of the New School of Social Research.) Hornswoggle: "It is imperative to understand the importance of the first contact between the nascent American people and other tribes in an unknown world. With the acquisition of Chariots, the Americans quickly became a formidable power. It was perhaps regretable that the Americans still lacked the ability to tame horses and construct a wheel, since this may have led to the so-called imperium maximus reduntia ad infinitum during the early Wallamallo Period."
(Cut to MacCollough back in Room 6b). MacCollough: "Another pictograph, dating to 3900 b.c. , the "Chariot-Archer" pictograph, demonstrates the superiority of the Chariot, which cows another neighboring tribe into surrendering all the Archers."
(Camera follows MacCollough from Room 6b to Room 1d). "And here we arrive at a magnificent room of pictographs which, taken together, have been called the Washington Codex. The first, dating from 3800 b.c., depict the founding of ancient Washington. In the next, dating from 3750 b.c., the mythical leader of the American people orders the tribal shamans to develop a way of disposing of dead bodies without cremation. The next panel, dating from 3650 b.c., shows American Charioteers converting another tribe into Settlers, the first instance of imposed labor in early American society. The next two panels, dating from 3500 b.c., show American shamans conductng the first Ceremonial Burial; and the mythical leader of Americans directing the tribal sages to develop the foundations for a new form of government, so that the leadership of the American people may pass to a new leader every generation."
"Taken together, these pictographs provide the foundations for a reconstruction of the most ancient history of the Americans. In an room adjoining the site of the Washington Codex is another pictograph, contemporary with the previous panels, the meaning of which scholars continue to debate. So controversial is its topic, that government authorities refuse to allow public viewing of it. We asked Prof. Snogwort, from the University of Boise State to discuss the implications of the so-called 'Fleeing Chariot' pictograph."
(Cut to Prof. Snogwort): "Many believe the 'Fleeing Chariot' to be the work of an early heretical sect. The very idea of America's elite Charioteers fleeing from another ancient tribe is too hard to stomach for many of the power elite of this great society. However, needless to say, the liberal-left will find deeper meaning in such a pictograph; but as yet, their interpretations are, at best, fickle."
(Cut to MacCollough) MacCollough: "Here in Room 11f, we come to the 'Great Disorder' pictograph from 3250 b.c.. Here we see the growing city of Washington thrown into upheaval."
(Cut to Dr. Fleckenstein) Fleckenstein: "Among the most interesting of the early pictographs presenting a history of the early American people, the 'Great Disorder' pictograph illustrates the problems facing a growing society. We have been able to determine that growth in early Washington necessitated a change in early tax policy, resulting in the development of the first 'luxury expenditures,' which consumed up to 40% of the early income base. This resulted in the development of the first class-based society in American history, with part of the population being happy, while the remainder of the population were unhappy. A phenomenal concept!"
(Cut to MacCollough) MacCollough: "The remaining pictographs, upon which the early history of the Americans are based, represent early explorations of the American people into the wilderness around Washington. These pictographs demonstrate, dating up to 3000 b.c. ..."
(Voiceover) PBS regrets to inform you that the Ford Motor Company has ended its sponsorship of The American Experience, due to preferential treatment given to one of its competitors during the introductory segment ...
* * *
Note: should have Monarch by the Oedo Year 2850; true to form, happiness is brutal; also, I left the hut in the north uninvaded so as not to mess up the march toward Monarch; it may also serve as "warning beacon" of any approach from the north, so keep on eye on it.