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Thursday, January 1, 2015

Otis Escapes, parts 4059 - 4062

 4059. Until the invention of the hot air balloon on December 14, 1782 no person had even viewed a battlefield from above. Is it any wonder then that from 1782 on, predicting the future from the flight of birds began to taper off, after years of decline that previously had only been caused by the superstitious idea that birds can’t predict the future?

 4060. Anthologies of history, replete with descriptions of countless battles, impress the reader again and again with the observation by the writers, that the outcome of a battle was decided by unseen forces hidden in ditches, or riding to the rescue over distant hills in the form of cavalry. To put it simply: birds can see what is coming, and the people can’t.

 4061. Seeing something coming and knowing what the result my be is a far cry from knowing the future, and only those birds who have an unrealistic and inflated opinion of their own prognosticating powers make any such claim. Most birds only state that their observations contain important intelligence, of use when plotting a military strategy.

4062. It is this simple fact that has led commanding generals over the ages to gradually come to the realization that the activities of birds are the best source of information about the outcome of a battle.

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