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Re: 40 LexiLine Newsletter How Old are the Baltic Languages?

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  • Andis Kaulins
    ... Dear Anne, I am sorry for the sometimes condescending tone, but it derives from my constantly facing the vast ignorance and stupidity of mainstream
    Message 1 of 12 , Jul 2 8:01 AM
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      > From Anne Beidler:

      > I love your answers, but sometimes I weary of your condescending
      > tone. Thanks anyway for all the great work you do.
      > Anne

      Dear Anne,

      I am sorry for the sometimes condescending tone, but it derives from
      my constantly facing the vast ignorance and stupidity of mainstream

      To understand my attitudes, one has to have some short knowledge of
      my background:

      1) I could read and write at age 3

      2) I skipped the first grade of school because I had already read all
      the textbooks required in elementary school up to the sixth grade -
      the teachers often did not know what to do with me - when the other
      kids wanted to know the answers to homework questions, they came to
      me - not the other way around

      3) Stanford is the toughest college to get into today in America, I
      went to law school there

      4) Upon graduation I was an associate at what I considered to be the
      best law firm in America, brain by brain (Paul, Weiss, et al. see

      5) My mentors were, inter alia:

      - the late John Kaplan, Prof. of Law, Stanford Law School, a legend
      for his brilliance at Harvard who roomed with Derek Bok (later
      President of Harvard) - we were good friends until he passed away in
      see http://www.andiskaulins.com/selecttops/johnkaplan.htm

      - the late Professor Dr. Dr. h.c. Dietrich Andre Loeber of the Kiel
      Law School whose father was a Supreme Court Justice on the Latvian
      Supreme Court - we were good friends and stayed in touch until his
      passing just one week ago

      - Peter Haje, Counselor of AOL TIme Warner and former General Counsel
      and Executive Vice-President of AOL Time Warner, the world's largest
      communications company

      I have been surrounded by brilliant people all of my life and count
      many as my friends - these are MY peers.

      This does not mean I am infallible, but anyone who does not recognize
      my intellectual capability - as many other brilliant men have - is in
      my eyes, due to this inability - which is also a function of the
      level of brainpower available - of lesser rank. With respect to these
      persons, I am, yes, "a snob".

      So what I am I to say about what I face in academica today on the
      subjects that I write about. My question truly is - who are these
      people? What is the actual extent of their knowledge and their
      abilities? How much do they really know? And how much of what they
      write in their journals is just repetition from their mentors?

      Who are the people in academia out there who feel competent to judge
      my work and ideas? What special competence do they bring to the
      subjects that I study? What analytical powers mark their work, if any?

      I find that many quite normal students have "lernt their lessons
      well" (i.e. they have learned to regurgitate that which they have
      been taught in their schooling, without ever thinking for themselves)
      and I find further that many of these persons - being blessed of no
      particular abilities or talents - have then struggled up the career
      ladder and have somehow, somewhere managed to obtained a
      professorship at some institution (or have inherited their father's
      business) and now think that these achievements have given them an
      intellect which they previously never had when they were younger.

      The same people who were once no match for me in school now suddenly
      think that their acquired positions have made them smarter. I am now
      to come to THEM for the answers. Hah! It is a joke, nothing more.

      As in the Wizard of Oz, the world seems to operate under the
      principle that you need a "paper" (documents - or paper money - will
      do) attesting to your capabilities - but issued by whom? Without such
      a paper, your thoughts are not worth discussing - that is the modern

      It is not the case that anyone in academia has ever proven the
      fundamentals of what I write to be wrong - rather, they think that
      what they are doing is "right" and that any contrary theory must
      necessarily be bunk by consequence. That is an attitude of mainstream
      scholarship which I equate with ignorance and stupidity of the first
      rank. How can I refrain from being condescending to a group of people
      whom I simply regard to be intellectually inferior?

      A brain of equal intellect you see would look at the IDEAS and
      discuss the EVIDENCE for or against any theory. WHO you were and WHAT
      POSITION you had would play no role, since these matters are
      irrelevant to the truth of any matter in question. But that is not
      the way the world works. Rather, "authority" is the name of the game.
      People look to "titles", "academic standing", "connections", etc.

      But, in spite of that, a higher intelligence never bows to a weaker
      one and so much of what I write appears condescending because I
      simply do not acknowledge the intellect of most of my detractors.
      They simply do not have the brainpower necessary to judge my work.


    • Andis Kaulins
      Regarding the Wizard of Oz, Andreas Szabo asks: ... such ... What scene or chapter where? The film Wizard of Oz is based on a book by L.
      Message 2 of 12 , Jul 3 10:18 AM
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        Regarding the Wizard of Oz, Andreas Szabo <silva@...> asks:

        Andis Kaulins wrote:

        > As in the Wizard of Oz, the world seems to operate under the
        > principle that you need a "paper" (documents - or paper money - will
        > do) attesting to your capabilities - but issued by whom? Without
        > a paper, your thoughts are not worth discussing - that is the modern
        > world.

        What scene or chapter where?

        The film "Wizard of Oz" is based on a book by L. Frank Baum
        see http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0060293233/

        Take a look at this website about the Wizard of Oz which explains
        everything regarding brains and diplomas, courage and medals, and
        good-heartedness and testimonials:


        That website contains quotes from the film (1939) - where the Wizard
        of Oz is performing his three - and only - miracles in the film:

        [The brainless straw Scarecrow gets a brain - quoting the Wizard of

        "Why, anybody can have a brain. That's a very mediocre commodity.
        Every pusillanimous creature that crawls on the Earth or slinks
        through slimy seas has a brain. Back where I come from, we have
        universities, seats of great learning, where men go to become great
        thinkers. And when they come out, they think deep thoughts and with
        no more brains than you have! But they have one thing you haven't
        got - a diploma. Therefore, by virtue of the authority vested in me
        by the Universitatus Committeatum E Pluribus Unum, I hereby confer
        upon you the honorary degree of Th. D...that's Doctor of Thinkology."

        [The cowardly Lion gets a medal - quoting the Wizard of Oz]

        "As for you, my fine friend, you're a victim of disorganized
        thinking. You are under the unfortunate delusion that simply because
        you run away from danger you have no courage. You're confusing
        courage with wisdom. Back where I come from, we have men who are
        called heroes. Once a year, they take their fortitude out of moth
        balls and parade it down the main street of the city and they have no
        more courage than you have. But they have one thing that you haven't
        got - a medal. Therefore, for meritorious conduct, extraordinary
        valor, conspicuous bravery against Wicked Witches, I award you the
        Triple Cross. You are now a member of the Legion of Courage."

        [The tin man lacks a heart and is given a loudly ticking clock
        hanging on a golden chain - quoting the Wizard of Oz]

        "Back where I come from, there are men who do nothing all day but
        good deeds. They are called phila-, er, er, philanth-er, yes, er,
        good-deed doers, and their hearts are no bigger than yours. But they
        have one thing you haven't got - a testimonial. Therefore, in
        consideration of your kindness, I take pleasure at this time in
        presenting you with a small token of our esteem and affection. And
        remember, my sentimental friend, that a heart is not judged by how
        much you love, but by how much you are loved by others."

        Many educated people think that the Wizard of Oz is for children only.

        They do not realize that what children love about the Wizard of Oz is
        his understanding of much of the adult world, for which the brainless
        scarecrow, the cowardly lion and the heartless tin man are metaphoric


      • Andis Kaulins
        Simon Moss writes - with a bit of pardonable (for a real pardon you need a document) CLD Carrollian ... ________________ Dear
        Message 3 of 12 , Jul 3 10:54 AM
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          Simon Moss <simon_1969_uk@...> writes - with a bit of
          pardonable (for a real pardon you need a document) "CLD" Carrollian


          >taking all this into account, can you use your brain
          >power to answer my questions regarding your theories
          >regarding the Ark of the Covenant that I sent you
          >several weeks ago.


          >Simon Moss

          Dear Simon,

          Another thing that I have learned about your average man is that the
          average man seems not to understand the language of cordiality and
          good will but that the only way to get through to many average people
          and scholars is to reply to them "in kind". Am I right?

          As far as I know, the essential core of your questions is already
          answered by materials that I have long had posted online and that are
          available to any agile, willing, interested and perspicacious

          These materials are found at:
          http://www.lexiline.com/lexiline/lexi000.htm - and numerous following

          and especially

          You first have to read those materials in detail and understand them -
          including the sources that are referred to in those materials,
          before we have a basis for any discussion of any kind.

          Since even your average Old Testament university scholar knows next
          to nothing about even the source materials referred to, much less my
          work, you have a tough job ahead of you.

          P.S. I will not answer every question posed to me if I find it not be
          relevant to the core issue of an inquiry.
          It would be a waste of my time.



        • Andis Kaulins
          Dear LexiLiners, Bob Sand has asked me some questions about Latvian dictionaries, indicating that he had gone to his library but had been unable to find one. I
          Message 4 of 12 , Jul 28 3:32 AM
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            Dear LexiLiners,

            Bob Sand has asked me some questions about Latvian dictionaries,
            indicating that he had gone to his library but had been unable to
            find one. I thank him for this question because it has given me the
            opportunity to do research and find new sources.


            Although numerous Latvian dictionaries are available at online
            bookstores and in large public libraries, the main historical
            dictionary - by far - for any study of Latvian is the four-volume
            Latvian-German Historical Dictionary (Lettisch-deutsches
            Karlis (Karl) Mühlenbach and Janis (John) Endzelins (cited as
            Mühlenbachs-Endzelins, Mühlenbach-Endzelins,
            Muehlenbachs-Endzelins, Mîlenbahs-Endzelins) Riga, 1923-1932, I-IV
            including supplementary volumes published later (Riga, 1933-1939) by
            Endzelins after Muehlenbach's passage.


            An electronic online version is being prepared. See
            http://www.ailab.lv/mev and
            according to which circa 75000 headwords (main entries) were included.


            The dictionary is available e.g. at the Latvian National Library
            Milenbahs Karlis. Latviesu valodas vardnica =
            Wörterbuch : 4 sej. / Karlis Milenbahs; red., papild. un
            Janis Endzelîns. - Rîga, 1923-1932.

            See http://www.amazon.de/exec/obidos/ASIN/B0000BLSTM/ and
            5000565 (either copy this link which will not wrap in Yahoo or use
            the "snip" (short-form) url for the same URL)

            The Library of Congress the four main volumes at

            The German National Library in Frankfurt has the main volumes and
            supplements as photo reprints at



            There is a copy of this dictionary at the University of Kiel Library
            in Germany and I have used that version for much of my work over the
            past 30 years.
            click on Slavistik, then on Baltistik, then on Lettische Philologie
            (at number 820) and then on Allgemeines (at number.350)
            This is a typical needle in the haystack system for indexing -
            typical for libraries.

            Here are relevant Kiel University Library entries - although the
            books are available ONLY in the central reading room and can not be
            borrowed. I personally photocopied all volumes for my own use some 30
            years ago but these copies were sadly destroyed a few years ago
            during moving.

            - K. Muelenbacha Latviesu valodas Vardnica

            - Standort: Zentralbibliothek
            - Signatur: R 132
            - Katalognummer(n): sla 820.350 / Lettisch / Wortschatz
            siehe auch: sla 820 / Lettisch

            How often do you find this dictionary used and cited in mainstream
            linguistic work online? very seldom. The mainstream linguists talk
            endlessly about Indo-European as if they had a clue, yet Pokorny's
            alleged Indo-European Etymological Dictionary has only three
            citations (that I have been able to find) to this main historical
            Latvian dictionary , at



            To put it bluntly, the work of the linguists on Latvian lexicology
            with regard to the reconstruction of Indo-European is next to
            worthless because most linguists simply have NOT used the main
            sources at hand. They ignore Latvian because they know nothing about

            Mainstream linguists cite to Latvian terms sparingly if at all (see
            for Latvian and Hittite
            because they know nearly NOTHING about the lexical components of the
            language and apparently have no access to the most important source,
            which is this dictionary. I am afraid that many mainstream linguists
            are - for Latvian - ignorant incompetents - and this includes most of
            the LATVIAN linguists themselves, who write endlessly about grammar
            but know next to nothing about historical lexicology in Latvian.


            An interesting citation to this dictionary is found at
            Deutsches Rechtswörterbuch (DRW)
            home page http://www.rzuser.uni-heidelberg.de/~cd2/drw/
            which reads:

            Wortklasse: Femininum
            Erklärung: anberaumter Zahltag.
            sprachliche Erläuterung: zum Wort vgl. K. Mühlenbach, Lettisch-
            deutsches Wörterbuch III (Chicago 1955) 25.

            Belegtext: ["kommt in alten rig. landvogteyl. Rechnungen vor, sogar
            noch in einer von 1578, wahrscheinlich in der Bed. von Wartezeit von
            lett. pagaidiht warten. Wenn die Stadt Riga in vorigen Zeiten ihre
            Bauern des Winters mit Korn und Heu unterstützte, so erhielten sie
            solches von der Landvogtey, wo es auf Kerbstöcken bemerkt wurde.
            May des folgenden Jahres hielt der Landvogt die] pageide, [da denn
            jeder Bauer, welcher einen Vorschuß genommen hatte, sich mit
            Kerbstock einfinden und das Geld abtragen mußte"]
            Datierung: 1578 Fundstelle: Gutzeit,Livl. II 320 [weitere Angaben:

            For those of you who read no German, this citation is to a word in
            German which is clearly taken from a Latvian word meaning "wait,
            provisional, temporary", and relating to agricultural subsidies which
            were issued in winter and as such marked on wooden sticks. The "wait"
            or "loan" based on those markings then had to be repaid in the
            following year.


            An interesting recent dissertation on the influence of Latvian on
            German in the Baltic is found at
            by Ineta Polanska (from Ogre, Latvia), published in Bamberg, 2002
            which is available online at
            (pronunciation font does not work for the .pdf - on my PC)

            Polanska cites liberally to Mühlenbach-Endzelins and has the honor of
            apparently being the only linguist online to do so.

            Her section on specific German borrowings from Latvian with
            etymologies - at pages 195 through 321 - is of particular value.

            This is a SUPERB work and a rare exception in mainstream linguistics,
            pointing to the linguistic world of the future in which the great
            antiquity and historical value of the Baltic languages - especially
            in lexicology and etymology - will ultimately be recognized, not just
            for German borrowings in the Baltic, but for Indo-European
            reconstruction generally.


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