Saturday, January 16, 2016

Hate Mail

Duncan Black's collection of reading disabled dolts insulting me is nothing but reassuring. 
It's not as if any of them actually read what I write.   Nothing happens there, it's a warehouse of the worn out, time wasting, once was but were not much. 

Johann Kaspar Mertz - Divertimento su Rigoletto op.60

Duo Savigni
Enrica Savigni, guitar "Hijos de Gonzalez" 1868
Laura Savigni, fortepiano "Clementi & CO." 1820


Unfortunately, the guitar and piano parts are printed as parts, not as a score.

I got out of the habit of listening to the opera on Saturday afternoons.  Maybe I should remember to turn on the radio next week.

Update:  J. K. Mertz, Barcarole op. 41

Napoléon Coste - La Source du Lyson

La Source du Lyson - The headwaters of the Lyson river

Enrica Savigni, guitar


The guitar player is, clearly, one of those excellent musicians you are likely to have never heard of before, superior to many of the bigger names for some reason or other.  She is a real virtuoso.

The guitar is interesting, a real romantic style guitar with the typical romantic style sound but made by the firm of Hijos de Gonzalez in Madrid in 1868, far later than I'd thought of guitar sound in those terms, but, then, Coste and his circle were still around and it's certainly the sound they would have expected, they played instruments either made earlier in the century or made by the same firms.  The modern, "Spanish style" guitar with its quite different sound was just beginning to gain the upper hand.

Hate Mail

I am sent a story about an incident in which a disabled man was assaulted with his own, metal cane by a woman who is said to have become enraged when he said he didn't believe in God.  

Laura Reid, 49, was visiting the victim in his home, and at one point she asked him if he believed in God, police told the station. The man jokingly replied he didn’t. Reid became so enraged by his answer that she allegedly picked up his metal cane and beat him over the head and body. She then robbed him.

Police told WDRB that the man was unable to leave because of his disability. Reid stayed in his home for three hours after the alleged assault, then left with his cell phone, keys, wallet containing credit cards and $50 cash.

The man was forced to crawl to a local gas station in order to seek help, where paramedics took him to a nearby hospital. He suffered serious injuries, including a concussion, a broken arm, multiple bruises, cuts and abrasions.

The victim was able to cancel his credit cards and identify Reid, who is being charged with assault, robbery and unlawful imprisonment. An arrest warrant was issued in October and she was taken into custody Tuesday.

Well, the first thing to say is that it's an assault and robbery, neither of which are OK either in the law or in religion.  People who do what is alleged should be dealt with severely, especially for the assault. If it turns out to be a hate crime, I wouldn't have any problem with that being taken into account in sentencing, the woman, if guilty, should definitely be required to take anger management counceling and have to address her bigotry.   Assault is a serious crime, the guy could have been killed.

All of the atheists online seem to assume that the woman is a Christian, which I didn't see claimed in the stories I've looked at.  If she believes she is she's certainly bad at being one, if this account is accurate.   No one who put the teachings of Jesus into practice would do that.  It's certainly not likely to persuade anyone that they should seriously consider the truth of those teachings.   What she did is remarkably like what the robbers in the parable of the Good Samaritan did, only he was in his own home, not traveling.  I do have to wonder why no one wonders what the religious affiliation of those who helped him is.  It being Kentucky, I'd guess it was a safe bet that some of them believe themselves to be Christians, who would be analogous to the Good Samaritan in the story.  It would be interesting to know, but only because of the use that it's being put to by atheists.

We don't know much more about the situation than that the man was able to get help and that he had serious injuries as well as was robbed, the name and age of the woman and that she and the victim of the assault and robbery had some kind of a relationship.  It would be good to know if the woman had previous convictions of crimes, though maybe this is the first time she ever did anything like this. The robbery makes you wonder if that wasn't her intent all along but we don't know enough to know that.

The trial should be interesting. More interesting than the internet babble.

I am glad the guy is, apparently, recovering from the assault and was able to cancel his credit cards.  I hope he gets justice.  I hope he comes out of it with more than just being a temporary and ephemeral object of anti-religious polemic.  I haven't seen his name in the media, maybe he doesn't want the attention the story has gotten. I don't think I would.

Friday, January 15, 2016

So The Bible Says And It Still Is News

In the past two years I've been re-reading the First Testament of the Bible, the Jewish scriptures and am finding that a closer reading of them, an honest reading of them on their own terms, shows they are incredibly subtle and unlike anything else I'm familiar with.  Just about everything about the parts of it which are clipped and trimmed and distorted and presented dishonestly to show God as a blood thirsty and evil ego-maniac, read in their fuller context shows that, on the contrary, the God of the Jews is unlike that.  Yesterday in the Catholic liturgy, the first reading was the passage from the Book of Samuel which showed that, chosen people or not, God wasn't some idol or magic talisman to be used by the Israelites to win their battles.   He wasn't a cargo-cult god, he wasn't a god of national supremacy, he wasn't a god of war.  The use of God in that way is endemic in the American right, the danger of that is contained in that passage, hearing this passage yesterday made me shudder.

When the troops retired to the camp, the elders of Israel said, “Why has the LORD permitted us to be defeated today by the Philistines? Let us fetch the ark of the LORD from Shiloh that it may go into battle among us and save us from the grasp of our enemies.

If you know the story, you know how that ended.  The meaning for the United States, today, intoxicated with American exceptionalism, the message couldn't be more relevant.

Today's reading is another that is especially relevant as the purported evangelicals of Iowa head into the caucus, not that they are going to take it any more seriously than the Israelites did in the Bible.

All the elders of Israel came in a body to Samuel at Ramah
and said to him, “Now that you are old,
and your sons do not follow your example,
appoint a king over us, as other nations have, to judge us.”

Samuel was displeased when they asked for a king to judge them.
He prayed to the LORD, however, who said in answer:
“Grant the people’s every request.
It is not you they reject, they are rejecting me as their king.”

Samuel delivered the message of the LORD in full
to those who were asking him for a king.
He told them:
“The rights of the king who will rule you will be as follows:
He will take your sons and assign them to his chariots and horses,
and they will run before his chariot.
He will also appoint from among them his commanders of groups
of a thousand and of a hundred soldiers.
He will set them to do his plowing and his harvesting,
and to make his implements of war and the equipment of his chariots. 
He will use your daughters as ointment makers, as cooks, and as bakers.
He will take the best of your fields, vineyards, and olive groves,
and give them to his officials.
He will tithe your crops and your vineyards,
and give the revenue to his eunuchs and his slaves.
He will take your male and female servants,
as well as your best oxen and your asses,
and use them to do his work.
He will tithe your flocks and you yourselves will become his slaves.
When this takes place,
you will complain against the king whom you have chosen,
but on that day the LORD will not answer you.”

The people, however, refused to listen to Samuel’s warning and said,
“Not so! There must be a king over us.
We too must be like other nations,
with a king to rule us and to lead us in warfare
and fight our battles.” 
When Samuel had listened to all the people had to say,
he repeated it to the LORD, who then said to him,
“Grant their request and appoint a king to rule them.”

"You are old and your sons do not follow your example, appoint a king over us"  If those words don't resonate, you're not paying close attention to the yapping of the media,  who play the role of our degenerate elders.   Read the warning of Samuel again and imagine life under Trump or Cruz or another Bush or any of the Republicans and translate it into American reality.

The disasters that came to people in the First Testament were inevitably a result of not doing justice, of not taking responsibility, of lying and cutting corners, so many cut corners eventually lead to snipping away the entire thing.   The "gospel" of prosperity is a seductive message, the actual scriptures don't lay things out for such an easy sale.  They tell the truth in all of its horrible and hard-sell reality.
So, how many people in Western media are bravely declaring, 

Saya Jakarta,

this morning?   

The Boy Pack Attack on Emma Watson And What Separates Real Feminism from Phony Feminism and The Real From The Pseudo-left

The online boy-hate-pack has taken off after Emma Watson because she noted that the late Alan Rickman supported womens' equality.  Given that she, unlike probably every one of the anonymous boys who are slamming her over Twitter knew Rickman doesn't matter, that she was honoring his memory by noting his support of justice doesn't matter.

Misogyny, racism, other forms of bigotry have flourished since the 1980s anti-"political correctness" campaign was mounted by the entertainment and "news" media, the reaction to the brief candle that influential feminism was before it was blown out with the equivalent of a fire extinguisher by the guys who ran the media.  The "more-speech" of the internet has been a boon for the expression of hate and bigotry, especially of misogyny and the promotion of a phony imitation of feminism which champions those most anti-women of industries, pornography and prostitution,  That phony feminism is, in the end, all to the benefit of men and to the detriment of women, also children and such men who are used by those industries.   All you have to do is look at those industries as they really are in their blatant expression to see that.

The use of women in porn and prostitution who express support for it even as they are working under the guys who run it, giving what they say about it under those conditions the deciding vote is about as stupid as the idea that slaves who could be gotten to say in full hearing of their enslavers they were happy under slavery a veto over abolition of slavery.  It's lucky for everyone that those 19th century abolitionists didn't fall for that or the women's suffrage movement to those who promoted the status quo of women.

What can be done about the boys who attack women like Emma Watson unless Twitter and similar venues of the spread of that most potent and dangerous of social diseases ban them, I don't know. If it were possible to ban them and other hate talkers, the defense of their right to hate isn't any proper concern for real liberalism.  If we left that to the pseudo-left it would help to highlight the important and basic difference between them and the real thing.  If Watson would support such a thing, I don't know.  Of course it won't happen because "social media" profits from carrying the hate, it's all about traffic volume to them.  The system of profits they operate in reward irresponsibility just as always has happened when the media can profit for delivering the most eyeballs and ears to advertisers.   In light of that, forcefully marking the distinction between them and the real left that supports real equality is probably the most important thing that can be done.  If the real thing will win out is far from guaranteed.  But just giving into the other side, as in "sex pos" "feminism" is even more of a guarantee of failure.

Update:  Well, obviously the reason you boys hate on her so much is that she played a smart girl in those Harry Potter movies.  You've got issues with smart girls, they make you feel puny and inadequate.  If you want me to go into detail, keep it up. Which is probably the only thing you can.

Update:  Oh, well, dearie, I read every one of the Harry Potter books out loud to my nieces, most of them at least three times.   I could probably tell you more about them than any of the Eschatots could. I've read the first four in both the original British and the American translations, I read the first one in German translation - the expressionist cover made Harry look like an angst ridden German intellectual -

The quality of the French translations differ, greatly from book to book. The First one is pretty bad, the third one is OK - for some reason Snape is renamed "Rogue".  

So, go on, quiz me, see if you can stump me.  Though on the books, not the movies.  I didn't care for what I saw of those. 

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Carla Bley Orchestra - Wrong Key Donkey - Umbria , Italy 1978

I'm not sure of all the players and they're not listed so I'm not going to list any of them.

A great performance of the piece, watching Carla's direction of the start is fascinating.

Pop Goes The Simels

Simps is trolling me over some stupid Beatles "tribute" band stuff that the senile BBC mounted.  I'm tempted to post some of the "tribute band" stuff that's on Youtubes but I've got more respect for the musical taste of the non-trolls who come here.  

I can hardly wait for what they do on the 60th anniversary. Maybe they could get a tribute Beatles tribute band who can imitate the imitators.  Like so much of Brit pop music, it can sink into an infinite regress of sameness and repetition. 

I think if I were one of the surviving Beatles it would make me want to open a vein.  

Though it could be worse, I can imagine a 90 year old Mick Jagger hauling out animatronic zombie Stones for the Oxygen Tank Tour someday.  I can imagine him drooling out Brown Sugar for the money at that age.  It's not far from that now. 

Let's Have A Religious Fight Over Widows and Orphans and Refugees

Republicans are upset that Barack Obama used a very few of the very many words in the Bible that condemn their policies and campaign slogans.

Speaking to reporters Wednesday morning in the Philippines, Obama scoffed at attempts to block refugees following the Paris terror attacks as "political posturing" that "needs to stop."

"Apparently they are scared of widows and orphans coming into the United States of America," Obama said of Republicans. "At first, they were too scared of the press being too tough on them in the debates. Now they are scared of three year old orphans. That doesn’t seem so tough to me."

he phrase that has them upset is "widows and orphans", people who are frequently mentioned together in The Bible as those to whom equal justice and charity are due.  But they aren't the only ones included in those formulas.  If you look at the book of Deuteronomy, in that favorite translation of right wingers, the formula includes exactly those who Barack Obama referred to,  For example:

Cursed be he that perverteth the judgment of the stranger, fatherless, and widow. And all the people shall say , Amen.  Deuteronomy 27:19

Thou shalt not pervert the judgment of the stranger, nor of the fatherless; nor take a widow's raiment to pledge: But thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman in Egypt, and the Lord thy God redeemed thee thence: therefore I command thee to do this thing.  Deuteronomy 24:17-18

That formula, "the stranger, the fatherless, the widow" appears over and over in that book of Law. If there is any perversion of the judgement of the stranger, the widow, the orphan, of the denial of justice to them in American society, it's the Republican right who are the embodiment of those policies.

I would encourage Barack Obama to be more explicit in his citations of The Bible to support his policies in these areas, giving chapter and verse, consulting with experts who would be able to advise him on that.  As he has reportedly read Marilynne Robinson, she's noted that in detail in a number of her essays.  Unlike so many of the favorite passages used by Republicans, the ones mandating justice to aliens, orphans, widows, poor people, oppressed people aren't really ambiguous at all and the entire range of Republicans and the people who support them are in the most obvious violation of them.   And they are in line with the best of what America is supposed to be, they would be because in the past they are what inspired people to push for changes in American law, making it more equal, more just.

If he's afraid of pissing off those who hate The Bible, well, that's no reason not to do it.  They shouldn't have a veto over that.   They've had a de facto veto on that in liberal politics for the past fifty years and the results have included the Republicans being worse than any time during our lifetimes and controlling the House, Senate and Supreme Courts as well as many state governments. Atheist and anti-religious speech codes have been given the test of time and they have failed in exactly the same way that the idiotic "more speech" nonsense has failed in the only way that matters, in producing government of, by and FOR The People.  It has failed entirely.

I would encourage both Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders to do the same in their political campaigns.   There is no more potent material to draw on, none that will resonate more in American society.   It's what the Civil Rights movement drew on during the period of its success and strength, the descent into sociological and legal babble in the subsequent period might have made those spouting it feel superior and smug and very modern and sciency but it is impotent in electoral politics.  If atheists don't like it, we owe them equal rights, we don't owe them political failure.  We don't and never did owe them censorship of our political language.

We did a lot better when our politicians weren't afraid to say those kinds of things explicitly.  I doubt we can ever recover from the nearly half-century of  giving up that source of American liberalism until we feed it from the source it sprang from.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Hate Mail

To start with, I was mostly joking about trying the Bates Method of eyesight improvement, I doubt there's a practitioner within a hundred miles of where I live and I probably couldn't afford it if there were one.  Though if there were I'd certainly try that over laser surgery.  One of my nieces' husbands had laser  surgery done and the result wasn't a great success.   That it would be a chance to report on something to the annoyance of the most bullying conformists around, the "skeptics" would only add to the reasons to try it.   Annoying "skeptics" and hearing their outraged whining is one of my strongest weaknesses. 

As to the story you relate of James "The Amazing" Randi about his father and the Bates Method, I think I'll state as a rule that given his history of pathological lying, I would need to have two independent sources that support anything that comes out of Randi before I'd believe he was telling the truth about something. His history of lying means that Randian assertions require extraordinary levels of verification before you should have any confidence that he's telling the truth.  I'd say the same about the late Martin Gardner though he was not the same caliber of liar that James Randi is. 

Home From Work Blogging

I looked at Salon, HuffPo, other places, I listened to the news, read some papers and blogs.  So much stupid, so little energy to deal with it all.  I'm a little burned out from dealing with the idiocy of the pretend left and all that entails and am not feeling much to be encouraged about the state of the real left this week.  Or it's the sinus infection talking, the pain it all is is usually at the other end.  

Reading more about Dorothy Day in the aftermath of one of my posts last week, I read more about how Christian anarchism is not like political anarchism, in fact it is about as different as two things get.  It's more like how to live in exile, a Babylonian captivity, a world governed by evil.  I'm not sure I buy all of it but I do see more of a point to it than the ridiculous idea that human societies will ever work in the absence of civil government and, yes, police.   In the past decade, since I started blogging, the background reading I've done has brought down many of the heroes and heroines of my previous ignorance.  In every case it was reading more of what those people said and did that has brought them down.  I'd never thought the anarchists we were taught to revere were anything like practical people with a realistic politics, though I'd thought they were mostly romantic idealists.  Reading more of them, the idealism is rather thin as compared to their hatred of things, of course, as in the way of things, they are angriest at the weakest instead of the strongest forces, so that means religion.  If Bertrand Russell is the intellectual whose stature in my mind fell the farthest, Emma Goldman is the political theorist who fell the farthest among those who I was taught by my education and lefty scribbling to regard as great figures.   

Just what living under a modern materialist Babylon captivity means, what resistance that requires and the scant promise of success are all questions that need thinking about.  Though, I have to remind myself, it's a question that even a gay, white man has not had to face in anything like the depth that members of other minority groups, especially black people, Latinos, women have to face.  All of us are, in different ways, in different degrees exiles, held in captivity by those with power.   

In the 1980s, as the Reagan-Bush regime exerted itself, one of the things which became clear was that the corporate media had a policy of disappearing any expression of Christianity that took the Gospel of Jesus seriously, especially in its main theme of radical, egalitarian justice.  On that the Republican right, the corporate right and the atheist "left" are in total agreement.   If there is a powerful subversive force that endangers the power and so accumulation of wealth that is the goal of that establishment, it is people taking their moral obligations as taught in the Gospels seriously.  Anyone who did that could not possibly think the Republican goals for the country and the world are good.  They could not endorse the hatred of the poor, aliens, foreigners, which are what has pushed the top candidates for the Republican nomination to the top. 

It is one of the remarkable things about the old line radicals of the 19th and 20th century, how they so often reject the possibility or even the desirability of democracy in favor of some bizarre, theoretical system of swinging dialectics or anarchistic nihilism.   The dictatorship of some make believe, I'd guess presumably omniscient, proletariat, "the masses" as a force of nature, the expression of physical law is, frankly, the most insane idea that has managed to get mistaken for a real left when it is a denial of everything a real left can be made of.   How it is supposed to, in the end, differ from fascism is a question that seeing its practical application in the past century has not moved at all.  I see that as all a predictable result of their adoption of materialism, in their hatred of religion and their yearning and hankering after the repute of science.  Ironically only highlighting the limits of science and the disaster that materialism is for democracy and a decent life. 

I can't call myself a Christian, so I can't claim Christian anarchism as being something I can join into. I'd feel that it would be necessary to join Catholic Worker or some, similar, real-life application of the Gospel's requirement to do for the least among us.   Right now I'd worry more that I was being a burden to them than anything, though maybe that won't always be the case.   I curse the conditions that kept me in ignorance for so long, it took reading lots of things, many of them found online, to break through the lie the leftism I'd bought for much of my adulthood.  I curse the conditions that maintain that lie, leading other people to waste their lives on futile theories and slogans which only aid the insane corporate oligarchs in burying any real resistance.   I hope it's not too late to do something with the time that's left. 

Newton Burger

An impressive sight, the Newton Burger consists of a burger with lettuce, tomato, onion, and a scoop of deep-fried macaroni and cheese layered between two grilled cheese sandwiches.

This is what Donald Trump is reported to have ordered at a New Hampshire burger joint.  It is a burger with lettuce and tomato (dare you to find it in the picture) topped with a scoop of mac and cheese, between two grilled cheese sandwiches.  Though not listed it is apparently served with fries.

I know it's evil of me to think it but I found this the most encouraging news of the day.

On the other hand, why do I suspect this is a product of The Food Channel's influence on American food?

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Splitting Headache

Splitting headache, eye strain, sinuses.  Now you know why I've been so grouchy lately.   

I've got to take the evening off, rest my eyes.  Someone suggested I try the Bates method of eye exercises.  I figure it's worth a shot, won't cost me anything.   From what I gather it's something that the anti-"woo" crowd gets pissed off about, so there's that too.  I don't think my neck could support heavier glasses.  

Simon Rattle on Pierre Boulez

Tuesdays are turning out to be a horrifically busy day for me.  I'll try to post more later.

In the mean time, I've got to ask, those folks who whine and complain about "modern music" being forced on them.  Is there any other segment of the musical audience who don't realize that if they don't like something they don't have to listen to it?    Especially with classical music which you have to make an effort to hear, to start with.  It's not forced on you whenever you turn on the radio, whenever you go somewhere with piped-in music like pop music is.  Just how stupid do you have to be to go to Youtube to whine that someone apparently forced you to go there and forced you to listen to Pierre Boulez's Repons.   Of course they're pretending about the whole thing.  Other than the vulgar appropriation of classical music in advertising and movie sound tracks, all classical music listening is entirely voluntary.  Apparently it's something these boys (most of them seem to be male) believe makes them look smart, to claim stuff like that. No, it only shows they don't have the intelligence of a dog which will avoid hearing what they don't like. 

Monday, January 11, 2016

Michael Mantler - No Answer Part One

Jack Bruce - voices, bass guitar
Carla Bley - piano, clavinet, organs
Don Cherry - trumpet

recorded February and July 1973
Jack Bruce recorded November 1973
mixed March 1974


Just in case you were wondering what I was talking about this morning.  

And the text of this one reminds me of a blog I used to go to.

Michael Mantler - The School Of Understanding - Platitudes

Jack Bruce  (Observer)
     Per Jørgensen  (Teacher)
     Mona Larsen  (Refugee)
     Susi Hyldgaard  (Journalist)
     Karen Mantler  (Student)
     John Greaves  (Businessman)
     Don Preston  (Doctor)
     Robert Wyatt  (Guest Observer)

     Michael Mantler  (trumpet, conductor)
     Roger Jannotta  (clarinet, bass clarinet, flute, oboe)
     Bjarne Roupé  (guitar)
     Marianne Sørensen  (violin)
     Mette Brandt  (violin)
     Mette Winther  (viola)
     Helle Sørensen  (cello)
     Tineke Noordhoek  (vibraphone, marimba)
     Kim Kristensen (piano, synthesizers)
     Don Preston (synth drums)      

     The Danish Radio Concert Orchestra

     conducted by Giordano Bellincampi


Hate Mail - About David Bowie

Someone challenges me to say what I thought about David Bowie, now that he's died.  Well, the fact is, I didn't think much about David Bowie in the years since first hearing his Ziggy Stardust album - I seem to want to remember it was in 1973 but don't remember - which I wasn't interested in or in the the music of his which I heard in the years after that.  I never saw his acting because I didn't like his music and I pretty much stopped going to see movies late in the 70s.  I figured Hollywood wasn't making movies for adults, much, and I didn't need to see them.

I do have an indirect connection to him in that I once knew a woman whose sister dated David Bowie for a while,  she wasn't too impressed with him.  If he meets up with her in the afterlife I'd guess at least his ears will be burning.

I listened to the music vid at the official site of his last album which the morning financial news tells me is "jazz tinged".   Michael Mantler was doing a lot more along that line back in the 70s, with better lyrics and better composition. Perhaps that's why I didn't care about Bowie's stuff, I already knew the stuff he might have been copying.   If there's a problem with what of Bowie's music that I know it's that it's essentially pop music with mere tinges of more sophisticated stuff, much of it obviously copied from more challenging composers, none of it very deep or really challenging.  I do rather resent his use of gay identity of a very stereotypical and very superficial kind when he was essentially straight.  His various walk backs of that in later decades leaves you to wonder if it wasn't all gay for pay.   And, then, there is the sister of the woman I used to know.

Hey, David Bowie's fans include the coolest astronaut of all times, he doesn't need me, especially as he's dead.  There are a lot of people, not everyone needs to like the same things, despite what the merely kewl kids think, not everyone has to go with the in-crowd conformity.  As I thought while listening to "Suffragette City"  years ago that's what that kind of commercial outlaw stuff turns into really fast.  Nothing ages faster than some "new sounds" do.  That the Morning Report business show is where I heard the news of his death, they went into his innovative means of selling himself, seems as fitting as any of it, to me.

How come you guys aren't going on and on over the death of Pierre Boulez?  Now there's an
innovative composer whose music is just about certain to last.

Update:   Stupid Mail:  Oh.  Please. I don't find pretty boy Brits attractive.  About the only exception to that is David Tennant and he's a Scot.

Slogans Not Thinking Govern A Media Driven Political System

It would be impossible for there to be more "more speech" than we have now online.  There is more "more speech" than there has ever been at any other time in our history.  So why do we have ANY chance of Trump, Cruz, Rubio or, for crying out loud, ANOTHER BUSH CRIME FAMILY MEMBER as president of the United States, LESS THAN A DECADE AFTER THE MEDIA INSTALLED THE LAST ONE. 

The theorists of "more speech" were idiots who disregarded the fact that when you let that speech include lies which could be told with impunity that those with an interest in lying were strengthened by the stupid regime they pushed.  That so many of the "more speech" crowd made their money in the media is certainly not just a coincidence. 

Anything which allows the mass and corporate media to lie on their own behalf is a permission to do just that.  Unconsidered in the theories of the "more speech" dolts is that a lie can be structured in a far more appealing and seductive manner than the truth be - that the truth was restricted by having to be true while a lie can assume any form desired.  It also discounts the ability of the corporate media to blanket the public consciousness in ways that those without money and with a message which is not profitable can't match or even approach.  

"More speech" vs. true speech, "free speech" in opposition to responsible, honest speech which people need to achieve democracy is one of the most ill thought out ideas which has become universally bought.   It is an empty slogan which the United States is riding into disaster as its champions preen in their purity.  

Sciency Is the Truthy of the Lefty Left

Well, I'd expected that most of the people who read what I write would realize that when I use the word "sciency" that I'm playing off Steve Colbert's brilliant and accurate neologism, "truthy".   Something that is truthy isn't the truth but you feel like it should be  Something that is sciency is something that feels like science but it isn't.  I'm not sure if I was the first person to use the word but when I use it, it's to refer to the moderny stuff that's truthy but in the guise of scientific thinking.  Or, since so much of the science which is in fact not science but merely sciency is just an assertion of materialism in the gaps of knowledge,  it's really that at a deeper level.  And it is the nearly ubiquitous pose of being modern and scientific and objective and logical and rational that permeates the intellectual lives of those with a college education today, few of whom are willing to practice the rigor to actually back up the pose with substance of any substance.

I suspect that as a politically active and native Mainer I'm more aware of the politics that resulted in Paul LePage than a bunch of guys from the middle-Atlantic states, the Pacific North West and Canadians who wannabe Staters.  I've only been following the politics of my state for the past sixty years. Believe me, I know what was behind such stupid ideas as easy ballot access, third party and independent candidacies and the guys and gals who proposed and adopted those idiotic measures that led to a series of the worst governors in our history were very sciency when they talked it up.  Much of it was couched in that most emblematic of all sciency sciences, sociology.  I've known some of them, I've met more of them.   Lots of them were careerists who would never let real economic justice and real equality get in the way of their own professional advancement.  And they have yet to show that they've learned from the disasters that their previous "reforms" have led to. There's a lot of that on the "left" which is lefty but not a real left.  The refusal to learn from real life instead of a line of logical bilge is one of the emblematic features of scienciness. 

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Gerald Clayton - Deep Dry Ocean

Gerald Clayton, piano
Gretchen Parlato, vocal
Joe Sanders . bass
Justin Brown . drums

This is still about my favorite CD of the decade.  I love Gerald Clayton's music.  

Hate Mail

So, when are the great benefits of all of this friggin' "more speech" that you jerks sold the left on going to start?  I think SETI will have its first two-way conversation before your "more speech" produces anything but the insane fascist politics that have been the dominant force in American politics since the "more speech" regime became the official ideology of our courts and our politics.  

I've seen "more speech" online and the results are that there's a good chance that Donald Trump or Ted Cruz could be president next year.  

Update:  The problem with making arguments more complex than someone like Ronald Reagan or Steve Simels can follow is that they'll do what Bertrand Russell said they'd do in the left sidebar.  That Simels audience at Duncan's Athenæum doesn't follow it either doesn't matter. 

Walk Spirit, Talk Spirit - McCoy Tyner

McCoy Tyner, piano
Joe Lovano, sax
Christian Mcbride, bass
Jeff Watts, drums

Dreary, rainy, gloomy day here.  January with rain instead of snow stinks.

Hate Mail - Daddy Defamation Whines

First I can honestly and proudly say I have never, once, had anything to do with any part of Mark Zuckerberg's money machine.  I have never had anything to do with anything that involves using "friend" as a verb.

It's ridiculous for Duncan Black, the sponsor of one of the pissier individual blog cliques, to be complaining about online "pissing matches" at this point in his online history.   Why does he think that the adults all eventually leave?   Clearly, he can dish it but he can't take it.

Update:  Who ever said what Guy Lombardo did was jazz?   When the greatest figure in the history of jazz, to date, praised Lombardo's music he noted that they played it straight.

"You can't find another band that can play a straight lead and make it sound that good.”

That is a quote from, you know, that musical ignoramus, Louis Armstrong, not the pride of Eschaton, their resident expert,  who always is wrong.  Or near enough.  Of course you have to understand what Armstrong meant when he said by "a straight lead".   I'm not going to explain.

Here's what Elijah Wald had to say about the issue.   Of course, since the likes of Simps, and Tunderboy and Skeptic Tank aren't interested in what one of the 20th centuries greatest figures in music heard, they won't care what a real scholar of the music thinks.   Sorry, reading is required.  I know you won't do that so I won't bother advising listening to the recordings mentioned.  I listened to a lot of them, as Wald noted, when he wanted his band to play hot Lombardo could get them to play hot.  But you wouldn't know that unless you listened.

There is a story that the manuscript of Bach's great  solo violin works was so little thought of in the next generation that they were narrowly rescued from ending up as butcher paper.   There's no way of knowing how future generations will think of music of the recent past.  Though I'm pretty sure that more people will know Lombardo's music, if for no other reason than that Louis Armstrong liked it, than will ever remember the oeuvre of one Steve Simels and his band.

Mathematical Chop Logic in the News And Among The Kollege Edukated

I'm told by the radio just now that you have a better chance to be elected president of the United States than you do of winning the Power Ball lottery.  While I'd like to see the math behind that statement, it is clearly not true.  So blatantly not true that anyone saying it has shown that they're too stupid to be a news reader or the person who writes their script.   And it's a statement I've heard earnestly made by allegedly educated people a number of times, many of them in the media, some of them with apparently enough competence in math to get them into trouble when it's not matched with logical analysis. 

One person wins the presidential election (barring coups such as was mounted in 2000) every four years but someone wins the Power Ball most weeks.  That alone shows there is clearly something wrong with the logical basis of such a statement, not really thinking out what the numbers could possibly mean in real life.  

The problem of winning a Presidential election, the huge numbers of factors, including those beyond calculation, such as human intention, biased media, corrupt judges, to name just a few, with the fact that only one presidential election happens every four years makes it far less likely that any one person would be the one who wins the election than that they would, if they bought a ticket, be a winner of the Power Ball.  There are 104 chances of winning the Power Ball every year.  And given the rules of the game, it's possible that there could be twice as many winners of it next Wednesday than there will ever be presidents of the United States.  The number of winners in any four year period proves that it's more likely that one person will win the Power Ball than be elected president of the United States. 

I'm not recommending you buy a ticket or make the equally illogical mistake of thinking you're enormously increasing your chances of winning by blowing your week's pay buying tickets.  I'm going to buy ONE ticket.  You'll know I've won if the editing here gets better, one of the first things I'm going to do it's hire someone who mastered formal grammar and composition to edit what I write.  No Strunk-White dupes need apply. 

It might make you feel smart and sciency to say stuff like that but it will only impress people who are kind of silly when it comes to logic.