Saturday, August 12, 2017

Hate Mail - Tell That To The People That Car Mowed Down In Virginia

I have no problem with the outright banning of Nazism, white supremacy, the KKK and other terror groups which oppose equality.   I have no problem with suppressing their advocacy of hatred and violence, discrimination and terror.  I don't think lies and especially lies against egalitarian democracy have a right to be told. 

The price of free speech should be telling the truth, not gambling with the lives of millions of people. 

Saturday Night Radio Drama - Victor Pemberton - Night Of The Wolf

Set at the end of the 19th century, a werewolf is prowling around the Cambridge Fenlands. Judge Mathew Deacon is desperately worried about his son...

Starring Vincent Price as Judge Mathew Deacon, Coral Browne as Mrs Northcott, Hugh Manning as Professor Forrester, Sheila Grant as Sybil and Peter Whitman as Robert Deacon.

A Horror legend of Man and Beast specially written for radio by Victor Pemberton.

Producer: John Tydeman

Hate Mail

"Freki" who also sockpuppets as "JR" is too chicken to come here and say that because she knows I'll whip her ass.  She's as big a liar as Simps and, truth be told, stupider than he is.   They're part of what made Duncan's once promising blog into an axis of drivel.   He had a hand in that, too, though. 

Update:  Birth of a Nation (which rebirthed the KKK after it had pretty much died out), Gone With The Wind,  The Littlest Rebel,  Song of the South, .... Geesh, really, practically the entire history of Hollywood, almost every movie and most TV shows depicting Black people,  The original inhabitants of the Americas, the Islands, Asians, etc.  Right up to this week.   Maybe the Brit doesn't know much about American history and the influence that movies have, especially among people who don't know much about real history - essentially most people.   Elvis Presley movies*, the good-ol' boy movies, and the Westerns, let's not forget about the massively racist Westerns, and their spin-offs in TV and pop music - especially when mixed with the post-Vietnam ultra-nationalist and military chic that really took off with the Reagan years are what fueled the present Nazi movement.   FOX started out as an entertainment venue before it turned into Trumpmerika's Völkischer Beobachter.   That whole thing is a recreation of what happened in Germany in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Western crap, the lily white entertainment that created the mythology of these AmerikaNazis and gave them their mythology.  What? You think they got it from reading academic scholarship?   You would think that the shields with Nazi symbolism as imagined by pop-paganism would be a clue that they're not high brows.  

*  Go look at how Elvis Presley has turned into a neo-Confederate icon when, in life, he not only acknowledged the debt he owed to black musicians, he was, especially for his time and place, not at all what he was turned into.  He was hardly a liberal but he wasn't a white supremacist, either.  I never had much use for his music and even less for his movies and celebrity but I doubt he'd love the number of images you can buy with his face and name emblazoned on the American swastika, that Confederate battle flag.  

The Forgotten Legendary Darlene And Jonathan Edwards

The movie they made about Florence Foster Jenkins a few years back made that novelty figure in the history of bad music making famous.   She did what she did out of tragic tone-deafness and detachment from reality.  People had and have had a lot of fun with poor, deluded Florence.  

Jo Stafford was, in every way, the exact opposite of Ms. Jenkins, she was famous for, not only having a beautiful voice but having an unusually good ear and an advanced knowledge of harmony.  It was one of the things that made her one of the most respected professional jazz-pop crossover singers of her time.  

But she also had a side-line as "Darlene Edwards" working with "Jonathan Edwards," Paul Weston, which showed that when you knew what you were doing, the results were funnier. Here are a few of their musical collaborations. 


It's Magic

I could never, no matter how hard I tried sing that off, I don't think I could play that on a clarinet and I can barely make a noise on one.

I Love Paris

The Aristocratic, Child-Slave Raping, Slave-Owning Jefferson Isn't A Shield Against American Nazism

I have been asked why I haven't said anything about the Nazi rally at The University of Virginia, and, yes, they were shouting Nazi slogans, "Soil and blood", only one of them.  It was an overt Nazi rally and it's not over,  I'll have plenty to say about it for days to come.

One of the things I've read so far is the article in the Guardian which anyone who isn't a Nazi sympathizer would have to find disturbing, if the spectacle of a large Nazi rally at a major United States university in 2017 doesn't do more than trouble the minds of Americans to get them to actively AND EFFECTIVELY oppose and suppress Nazism, kiss your children then your own ass good-bye.

The rise of Nazism and its domesticated forms, promoted by Hollywood, it's long line of Confederate apologist lies and cover ups, going back to the beginning, through the 1980s fascist-chic and onward to its promotion of fascist and, lately, overtly Nazi content - called by other names, has been a huge warning sign for the past century.   There is everything to do with appearance of Confederate flags in popular culture, Iron Crosses, shamefully, the appropriation of the Celtic cross, the appropriation of Nazi pagan symbolism in the stupider and less informed parts of the not-so counter culture,.. and what happened in Charlottesville last night.

It is ironic enough so as to be bizarre that the outnumbered and beleaguered counter-protesters linked arms around a statue of Thomas Jefferson, who was a white-supremacist, slave holding, child slave raping aristocrat whose simplistic ideas of free speech and free press have left the United States peculiarly vulnerable to what has led to this rise in Nazism here, 72 years after my parents and their generation of young people brought down the Nazis in Germany, the Fascists in Italy and their allied military imperialists in Japan.  

It turns out that when you allow lies and hate free reign that those, financed by billionaires in the United States, in foreign countries, such as Russia, promoted in the media, online, that, just as in that list of countries above, it can be expected to, at the very least, lead to bloodshed and even total destruction of rights and egalitarian democracy.   Actually, you can go back in American history and the Confederacy to see that it can happen here, under the Bill of Rights, the United States Constitution and the rule of law. Not to mention the long night of Jim Crow, segregation, the murder of Native Americans, etc.  All of those happened under the First Amendment, "more speech" didn't prevent those things from happening.   It turns out that a theoretical and abstract absolutist dogmatic interpretation of the First Amendment DOES lead to the empowerment of the liars, the haters and those who are benefitted by lying and hating.  

Dumping the romanticized, deified, phony Jefferson through admitting that history, his and the countries, will be necessary to keeping it from happening here, again.   The slogans of free speech absolutism are as responsible for this as anything else.   Given this, I'd rather take a chance on the kind of broadcasting standards and requirements that held it at bay for a few decades than what has happened since the "civil liberties" industry got rid of those.

Dawkins The Hard Problem And The Decay Of Science With "Intelligently Designed Morality"

Decades before he took the threadbare golden parachute of scientists whose science careers were winding down and second-rate standup comedians whose shtick was petering out, advocacy of atheist orthodoxy, I didn't find Richard Dawkins particularly impressive.   I was largely unconvinced by The Selfish Gene for reasons I've gone over before and I really thought his Extended Phenotype idea had some basic problems.   I also wasn't impressed by his writing which reminds me, oddly, of Norman Vincent Peale, essentially a PR job appealing to emotional preference* instead of an intellectually rigorous investigation of issues.  His stuff, mixing in the crap standards of the social sciences into real sciences, genetics and the study of evolution, hasn't been good for science and the mix of that into politics and popular culture have certainly not been good.  Neo-eugenic ideas, even a scientific racism - which I assume is, actually, something he wouldn't approve of - have been given their biggest boost since the 1970s exactly by that kind of quasi-scientific, pseudo-scientific muddling, all of it growing out of an advocacy of that hegemony of natural selection as an all powerful tool of explanation which I mentioned the other day.

Since he has given up science for atheist evangelization my opinion of him certainly hasn't gone up.

John Horgan at Scientific American has up a short interview with him, there are several things said in it that could be gone into but this exchange on the replicability problem jumped out at me.

John Horgan:  The “reproducibility crisis” in research has raised questions about  science’s reliability. Do scientists deserve some blame for widespread debate over climate change, evolution and vaccines?

Richard Dawkins: It is a real worry, perhaps especially acute in medical research. Part of the problem is the tendency for results to be simplified in order to make a neat, easily summed-up story. And this is exacerbated when recent research results hit the newspapers or other media.

Another problem is the “file drawer effect” whereby papers that fail to disprove the null hypothesis are never published, because authors or editors think they’re too boring. This could theoretically lead to falsehoods being propagated: If enough studies are done, a minority will yield statistical significance even if the null hypothesis is true.

Despite the “reproducibility crisis” there are some scientific conclusions that really are robust and become progressively more so as time goes by. The fact of evolution is one such.

JH:  What can be done to resolve the reproducibility crisis?

RD: In the case of the file drawer effect a possible remedy is for all scientists to post on the internet their intention to do an experiment before they do it, and share the results even if these are negative and therefore not appealing to journal editors. On this system, journals would refuse to publish the results of an experiment that was not announced ahead of time.

In the case of scientific findings that hit the headlines too quickly, editors should be less keen on hot, latest news and should give more space to timeless science.

The first part of his answer made my mouth fall open:

Part of the problem is the tendency for results to be simplified in order to make a neat, easily summed-up story. And this is exacerbated when recent research results hit the newspapers or other media.

because that could be a short description of Richard Dawkins entire career in science and the entire field of socio-biology - evo-psy which is all about simplifying enormously complex phenomena and huge ranges of phenomena over the entire taxonomy of life on Earth into the most pat and unevidenced simplifications in order to come up with an "easily summed-up story".  Really, that's pretty much what the entire framing of natural selection is.  And, as it is scientists who do that, who have been doing that since the publication of On the Origin of Species, and getting away with that, blaming it on journalists is pretty amazingly nervy.   Richard Dawkins entire career has been as a quasi-popularizer of exactly the practice he blames for the problem of what happens when people take a close and critical look at what scientists and alleged scientists in fields such as the very psychology which Dawkins introduced into genetics and evolutionary biology do.

The part blaming the replicability crisis on the "file drawer effect" is also rather stupid in that publishing null results - not a bad idea, in itself - won't do anything to fix the fact that a lot of what is published, in scientific and so-called scientific journals is crap research that, when a replication is attempted, turns out to have produced false-positive results in the original study.   The crisis in science goes a lot deeper than something that can be fixed by the means proposed, good as those might be in themselves.  It is really science not living up to its pretended standards of rigorous self-criticism to start with.  I think that it has reached a crisis stage is the result of tendencies that reach back at least well into the 19th century and it is, also, not unrelated to the kind of ideological insertion into science which, also, has been what Richard Dawkins' career has been about.

Fixing that will take a lot more than the couple of band-aids that Dawkins thinks will do the trick.  I think it's extremely ironic because there is, actually, one area of scientific research that has been tested and cleared as being guilty of practicing the "file drawer effect",  the controlled research into parapsychology.  No other area of psychological research has matched their experimental rigor, something that even some of the pseudo-skeptics have had to admit.

What he said in response to a question about "the hard problem" was more modest but also included something to consider:

JH:  Is consciousness a scientifically tractable problem? Do you favor any current approaches and theories?

RD:  It certainly isn’t tractable by me. At times I find myself inspired by the confidence of my friend Daniel Dennett. At other times I lean towards his fellow philosopher Colin McGinn’s pessimism: the view that the human mind is flatly incapable of understanding its own consciousness. Our brains evolved to understand how to survive in a hunter–gatherer way of life on the African savanna—understand the behavior of an extremely narrow range of medium-sized objects travelling at medium velocities. It is therefore a wonder, as [cognitive scientist] Steven Pinker has pointed out, that our brains have advanced to the heights of relativity and quantum mechanics. Maybe this should give us Dennettian confidence. Or maybe the “hard problem” of consciousness is forever beyond us, just as calculus is forever beyond the mentality of a chimpanzee.

That Dawkins limits his comments to "brain only" hacks like Dennett and Pinker and another, perhaps less orthodox materialist, Colin McGinn, is no surprise.  All of them, even McGinn who essentially says that the cause and origin of consciousness will never be known to us because its solution is beyond human capability,  will not consider the possibility that this thing they do not and likely cannot ever understand must, however, fall within their materialistic framing, which is a faith holding.   The biggest problem facing science and the public understanding of science isn't bad journalism, it is the imposition of an ideological limit on intellectual statements which must all, in every way, uphold a naive materialistic orthodoxy.

Note that all of them, perhaps excepting McGinn, believe that this thing they don't know, would have been a product of natural selection when they have not evidence that that is true.   That minds have understood things entirely unrelated to the vulgarity of natural selective story telling, even things that contradict the natural world as human beings can perceive it, should give rise to the suspicion that that is a good reason to reject that most commonly held orthodoxy.   I, for the life of me, don't understand how anyone can take Daniel Dennett seriously when his claims for the power of natural selection as a force are, in themselves, irrational and betray a basic misunderstanding of what even orthodox neo-Darwinians claim about it.   If the field weren't in deep intellectual trouble people would consider his work a joke.

I have pointed out a couple of times that, when he was confronted with the new physics of the first three decades of the 20th century,  the holder of Dawkins' position, the high Pope of Brit-atheism, Bertrand Russell gloomily divined that science was finished and that we would devolve into a world in which pseudo-science would substitute for what he believed was the solid world which relativity and quantum physics dissolved.  Given what has happened to science as the number of scientists rose enormously, as they became professionalized and remunerated at an increasing level, perhaps that was one of Russell's better predictions.  I think we are seeing an ever increasing skepticism about evolutionary psychology and the hegemony of natural selection as the supreme explanatory force in biology and in all of evo-psy's allied social sciences.

One of the problems is that with evolution, science has bitten off more than it can chew, it's like a termite trying to eat a forest of trees in one bite.  It's too big, it's too long in time, it's too varied, it's too unknown and always will be largely unknowable for scientists to honestly make any general statements about it.   The Sociobiologists and Evolutionary Psychologists have made some of the most scientifically irresponsible claims about evolution and, as those wedded to natural selection ALWAYS DO IN THE END, their claims have driven right into a revival of eugenics with most of if not all of the putrid aspects of that.   I don't think there is any mere coincidence that the rise of the most primitive of scientific racism and its extension into journalism - both establishment and ad hoc, ideological journalism - followed on after the publication of popular accounts of that by people like Dawkins.  The intro-courses that people in journalism and other fields took taught them stuff that, if you look at the biology textbooks of the 1910s, 20s, 30s and 40s, you will see being taught then.

I think the influence of Dawkinsian thinking, the materialist foundations and, yes, eugenics consequences of believing what he said is most evident in the popular use of the word "memes", something which I have heard out of the mouths of all kinds of people, far right to left.   "Memes" were an invention of Richard Dawkins in The Selfish Gene, an attempt to come up with a socio-biological theory of culture, one which was widely unadopted by scientists and other thinkers but which has gained currency among those who like to get sciency but who aren't so good with the math and other prerequisites for being a real sci-guy.   That the idea has just about no presence in real science and, if it were taken seriously, would entirely undermine all of the validity of all of human thought, including science, including mathematics as an expression of reality, only shows that self-identified rationalists, people who insist that everything good is based  in evidence**, even scientists, like Dawkins, can be the source of potent superstitions.  But we already knew that about eugenics, as proven most dramatically and horrifically in the history of the application of it in real life.

*  I don't think the actual role that emotional preference plays in what gets accepted in science - especially when the sciences are not exact, concerning things that escape the kind of easy fit with mathematical logic that works in physics - has ever been considered.   I think there is no area in science which elicits such an appeal to emotion as anything having to do with natural selection, the personal, professional and, therefore, emotional investment in Darwinism on the part of biologists, people in the pseudo-social-sciences is never far beneath the facade of scientific objectivity.  I think that emotional investment is one of the great, unadmitted controlling forces in science, today.   It is matched only by the emotional investment in materialism and atheism and the hatred of religion which is, also, one of the unadmitted controlling forces among scientists and within the purported scientific literature, especially in the life sciences and the alleged behavioral sciences.

**  This, from John Horgan's interview was only one of the things Dawkins said that I found massively ironic.

JH:  What’s your utopia?

RD:  My utopia is a world in which beliefs are based on evidence and morality is based on intelligent design—design by intelligent humans (or robots!). Neither beliefs nor morals should be based on gut feelings, or on ancient books, private revelations or priestly traditions.

Given that most of what Richard Dawins career is based in is unevidenced conjecture and making up stories which can't be verified, yeah, right.

It was, of course, the opposition of the Catholic Church to eugenics that helped suppress it in many places.  It was largely through the complete opposition of the Catholic convert, G. K. Chesterton and others based on "ancient books, private revelations or priestly traditions," that prevented  British eugenicists, including Francis Galton, Leonard Darwin and the Fabians from instituting overt eugenics in Britain.  They did manage to tweak the putrid Poor Law system to come up with a pretty awful substitute for it, though.

Most of the opposition to eugenics and scientific racism were based on religion, even as the scientific communities largely advocated them.

Dawkins view of history is as narrow and self-serving as his view of evolution.  We have seen in the literature of evolution what happens when atheist-scientists have come up with their own "intelligently designed" morality.  You can read that in the Descent of Man, in the racial thinking of Thomas Huxley, the eugenics of people like Galton and Pearson, you can most certainly read it in the works of Ernst Haeckel which Darwin gave his stamp of approval as having the highest of scientific reliability as he adopted Haeckel's advocacy of infanticide, eugenically beneficial slaughter of those they considered lesser specimens of humanity, named groups of people slated for eventual elimination in works having the status of scientific classics.  You can find some of Haeckel's supposedly scientific, "intelligently designed" morality republished and popularized by such atheist publishing firms as Prometheus, translated into English by the previous most-famous atheist in the world, former priest, Joseph McCabe, and in such things as The Little Blue Books series.

I'll stick with The Gospel, the Prophets and the Law.   It's less likely to get millions killed and oppressed.

Friday, August 11, 2017

OK, ok, ok, I'll post a few more standards but not the most standard of them

Lionel Hampton and Sonny Burke - 
Midnight Sun - Jo Stafford 

Billy Strayhorn and Duke Ellington,  John La Touche - Day Dream 

Stafford’s finest jazz album was the 1960 Columbia LP, “Jo + Jazz”. Surrounded by an allstar band which combined stars from the Ellington band (Johnny Hodges, Ben Webster, Harry Carney, Lawrence Brown and Ray Nance) and the West Coast jazz scene (Jimmy Rowles, Don Fagerquist, Conte Candoli, Russ Freeman, Joe Mondragon, Shelly Manne and Mel Lewis), Stafford sings in a light, attractive tone, swinging gently, and creating definitive performances. The band was arranged and conducted by Johnny Mandel, and the play list includes three gems from the Ellington book (“Just Squeeze Me”, “Day Dream” and “I Didn’t Know About You”), big band era classics (“For You”, “Dream of You”, “S’posin’” and “What Can I Say After I Say I’m Sorry”), standards (“You’d Be So Nice To Come Home To”, “I’ve Got The World On A String” and “The Folks Who Live on the Hill”) and jazz-inspired songs (“Midnight Sun” and “Imagination”). 

We Need To Get That Number Up A Lot Higher Than This

Photo illustration by Natalie Matthews-Ramo. Photos by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images, Win McNamee/Getty Images, Chris Kleponis-Pool/Getty Images, Drew Angerer/Getty Images, and Peter Parks-Pool/Getty Images.
I didn't know Slate had a Trump Impeach-O-Meter going.

It's high time to start working on the eventual impeachment of Pence, who has certainly been lying up a storm over Russian ratfucking of our elections and other treasonous offenses.   Pence was a disaster as governor of only one state, give him the rest and he'll, at the very least, tank the economy and get lots of people dead.

Slate has up a Trump Apocalypse Watch graphic, too.


I'd think that was way too conservative an estimate of the chance that he could get us all killed I'd say three horses and a horses ass is where he stands right now.  I'd also make them golf-carts, not horses.

Dad Bod Navel Gazers - Hate Mail

Oh, Simps said that, did he, and the Echatots lapped it up.  Big deal.  

What happens at Eschaton  doesn't matter at all.

Update:  Oh, I forgot, I think it was on one of the more ironically called "Scienceblogs" where I confronted the atheist blog rats by exposing their real attitude to gay people, not everything happened at Duncans sheltered playgroup.  Someone tells me that it's bled some of its most regular regulars in the past few months who just don't bother going there, anymore.  Even bored people without enough to do get bored with boredom.     

When Gordon Humphrey Knows Trump Is Insane And Has To Be Removed NOW, You Know It Too

Maine is the only state in the United States that shares a border with only one other state, New Hampshire, I live on that border and have followed New Hampshire politics since I began to follow politics.  During the time Gordon Humphrey was a Republican Senator from New Hampshire, he was considered to be on the quasi-nutcase fringe of the Republican right, before he quit the Republican Party over the nomination and selection of Donald Trump, he was obviously on the sane edge of Republicans who knew how dangerous Trump was and that he had the potential to not only turn out to be a criminal but that he was likely to get millions of people killed.  Obviously, Gordon Humphrey has both changed - sometimes leaving politics can lead to a change for the better - and the Republican Party has gone totally nuts. 

Gordon Humphrey has called for the immediate removal of Donald Trump because his playing a game of chicken with the paranoid, amoral and, lets, not forget massively armed and militant, North Korean leadership, could result in the deaths of, first, hundreds of thousands and eventually millions of people in the Koreas, Japan, other countries in the region and, as we were reminded, United States territories within easy striking distance from North Korea.  What China would do, what that would mean in costs of lives, who knows?

I do believe that Trump's eruptions of insane verbiage is probably his and his insane inner circles attempt to deflect the move to remove him from office, I wouldn't be surprised if scum like Steve Bannon, Sebastian Gorka and Stephen Miller figure this is a good political move for Trump, having seen what being declared "a wartime president"  in the media did for the two Bushes - our media's love of war is something that needs to be talked about in that regard, too.  

Donald Trump is nuttier than George III was, his criminal insanity and likely senility is a clear danger to the world and to the country, right now.   If our political system and Constitution doesn't remove him before he gets huge numbers of people killed, it is the final proof that those don't work to provide the most basic of the goods that are enumerated in the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence and any rational advocacy of government.  

Donald Trump has to be taken out of the presidency and sent back to Trump Tower, that has been clear from almost the beginning of the year.  If August ends and he is still in the White House, the United States deserves to lose its status as a respected and responsible country because it has ceased to be respectable because of its Neronian irresponsibility in keeping a pathological child from getting into a war with another pathological child.   We will have joined the list of the most dangerous countries in the world, governed by the cabloid TV and movie informed mind of Donald Trump.  

Rupert Murdoch and the people at FOX should be prosecuted for war crimes and crimes against humanity for the role they've played in bringing this on.   Donald Trump is the creation of the worst of our media, freed to lie and promote corporate fascism on behalf of its owners and their investors.   FOX is the Völkischer Beobachter of our times. 

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Irving Berlin - Mary Lou Williams - Blue Skies - One Last Standard Which Is Anything But Standard

The same but quite different

Or are you envious because I am generous? - Hate Mail

Simps is so ignorant I don't think he knows there's a difference between Protestantism and Catholicism, never mind the other idiot who doesn't know that Protestantism covers a vast range of positions on economic issues, as, in fact, Catholics do, as well.

As for what Jesus said, it is pretty a pretty radical call for a living wage being the standard of payment.  Matthew 20: 1-16

20 “For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire laborers for his vineyard. 2 After agreeing with the laborers for the usual daily wage, he sent them into his vineyard. 3 When he went out about nine o’clock, he saw others standing idle in the marketplace; 4 and he said to them, ‘You also go into the vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.’ So they went. 5 When he went out again about noon and about three o’clock, he did the same. 6 And about five o’clock he went out and found others standing around; and he said to them, ‘Why are you standing here idle all day?’ 7 They said to him, ‘Because no one has hired us.’ He said to them, ‘You also go into the vineyard.’ 8 When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his manager, ‘Call the laborers and give them their pay, beginning with the last and then going to the first.’ 9 When those hired about five o’clock came, each of them received the usual daily wage. 10 Now when the first came, they thought they would receive more; but each of them also received the usual daily wage.  11 And when they received it, they grumbled against the landowner, 12 saying, ‘These last worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the day and the scorching heat.’ 13 But he replied to one of them, ‘Friend, I am doing you no wrong; did you not agree with me for the usual daily wage? 14 Take what belongs to you and go; I choose to give to this last the same as I give to you. 15 Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or are you envious because I am generous?’ 16 So the last will be first, and the first will be last.”

That's about as friggin' radical a stand on the issue a I've ever seen.  Outdone only by the advice to give away your money to people who won't pay it back and the rest of the economic program of the Gospels

George Gershwin - Eric Le Lann Trio - Summertime

Eric Le Lann Trumpet
Nelson Veras Guitar
Gildas Boclé Bass

I forgot I was supposed to post more standards, here's about the most standard of all standards that show that even Gershwin that has been done to death is still not dead.  Not when it's great jazz musicians who are doing the resuscitation.

Update:  Johnny Green - Airelle Besson, Nelson Veras - Body and Soul

Figured you may as well have another before I forget.

You Think Sagan Came Up With These Ideas? Have You Ever Read Anything?

I was just sent this bit of boilerplate* by someone who is either upset with my recent dissing of his Saganhead or believes that their man-god invented the ideas contained in it in 1995.  You can find the same things said decades, centuries before Sagan said it.  You might try Newt Minnow's famous "Vast Wasteland speech of 1961 and similar things going back to Plato and his hatred of what he considered the low minds of anyone but aristocratic citizens of Athens.  

I will point out that since lying has become the huge moral issue which has gotten us things like Donald Trump, climate change denial, the promotion of fascism and neo-Nazism in all their malignant forms, that there is nothing at all in atheism that can tell you what moral absolute even the worst lies are a violation of.  Materialism, such as was Sagan's stated credo in his beginning to Cosmos, can't tell you why you shouldn't tell a lie if it gets you what you want.  Sagan's own faith tradition has played a huge role in bringing us to the discrediting of the moral absolute that a truth is better than a lie, that a lie is always a moral wrong unless there is a supreme higher moral value that requires one be told, the lying to the Nazis about where the Jewish children are hidden, exception. 

Atheist-scientistic-materialism, the faith tradition of the so-called "Enlightenment", even as its classical phase decayed into the 19th-20th century romantic phase of it and on to its total decay into mass media induced pop culture (I'd love to ask the shade of Sagan what he thinks of his heir apparent, Neil Degrasse Tyson's remake of Cosmos), inevitably led us where we are, it is what disempowered the left, first through a loss of self-confidence in the absolute character of the morality that is the foundation of American liberalism, then in the assertion that, as Steve Weinberg says, you can't prove that not being a selfish bastard is wrong.   The vulgar materialist right was aided by that self-defeating effort of the hoity-toity materialists. That loss of confidence is the key to understanding the disaster we  are living in, the thing that made all of the difference in the sporadic progress made in the past.   Freeing the press to lie, one of the great goals and achievements of the "secular" athiest, pseudo-left, was the key mistake that was made. 


Definition of boilerplate

  1. 1:  syndicated material supplied especially to weekly newspapers in matrix or plate form
  2. 2a :  standardized textb :  formulaic or hackneyed language
I remember back before Sagan wrote that stuff for venues like Parade Magazine (his columns comprise a good part of the contents of "A Demon Haunted World"). But since reading lots of his fanboys online I realize that people don't understand what basic terms mean.

Thus Spake "Zod" a Rooster

I don't usually edit comments I post and I don't usually post comments that are pointless invective, especially when they attack someone other than me,  but this one is such a good example of the typical blog atheist method of thought and so revealing of what a bunch of phonies they are that I'll make an exception, leaving the name of a third party out.

This is from "General Zod" the fake name of someone who used to post comments at Eschaton but who I a. believe was banned by Duncan Black for some reason I don't know, b. I have come to believe is just one of Steve Simels' many sockpuppets that he posts under but who might be a "real" person.   By the way, his declaration that he'd never post another comment here lasted a grand total of eight days.  Just as I was getting used to the absence of Simpering.

I'll go through it piece by piece.

Did you figure out a way to prove your flying invisible sky wizard is real, or are you going to resort to 7 paragraphs of unmitigated bullshit? 

If what I wrote was "bullshit," I have yet to have either "Zod" or Simels or any other atheist refute anything I said.  Nor was what I said any attempt to "prove" the existence of God.  I don't do "proofs" of God's existence.  Since "Zod" also said pretty much the same thing over the few pieces I posted about what Roger Penrose said on the issue of what is real, proof of that kind only works in one of the three realms of reality, pure mathematics.   I remember pointing out once that it was interesting that the only area in which logical proof actually works were for the very simplest of entirely abstract entities that, perhaps, only exist in peoples' imaginations, numbers and other such mathematical objects.  And it doesn't even extend to a the ability to prove that those mathematical object are real.  The same guy, Robert Kuhn, who conducted the interview with Penrose has a number of them up expressing a wide range of opinions about the reality of mathematical objects.   I believe that Penrose pointed out somewhere in the interview that obvious thing about science that is always ignored, that science doesn't prove things, math does.  If he didn't, I'm sure he'd agree with a statement to that effect.  Mathematical objects are abstract, imaginary entities and aspects dealing with such things can generate proofs, material objects are not abstract and merely imaginary and can't produce proof of that kind.   I'll consider "proving" the existence of God when they've come up with a way to prove anything about the physical world in the same way they can things about mathematical objects*.

I will say that when given a choice between the opinions of stupid pop atheist blog rats and those of some of the most eminent scientists, philosophers and thinkers in the English language today as to what constitutes "unmitigated bullshit" and real issues, I'm not stupid enough to not see which side is worth paying attention to, which has ideas worth thinking about.  Pop atheism is a means of avoiding thinking, the product of watching too much TV,  too many movies, listening to pop crap and getting a meaningless college degree so you can feel conceited and superior when you are about as informed as any bar drunk with a mouth a lot bigger than their knowledge base.   Atheism made a good fad for a while but as it was an appeal of the bigoted and ignorant and conceited to others like them, it was always doomed to have a limited appeal, turning off more normal people than it would attract.  Not all atheists are assholes, but the ones that make a stink all are.

And again, moron, if you had a clue you would know that Simels and me are two separate people. But that would harm your self-elusion, wouldn't it? 

In light of your previou blather,  prove you aren't one of his sockpuppets.

Did you and [another male blogger] have a nice weekend snuggling in that cabin in the woods trying to find God together? You really need to try harder with your religious bullshit. Take care, Sparky!

This reminds me of  one of my earliest online experiences when a group of blog atheists were sharking about Jesus being gay, going on in their jr. high way, yucking it up.  It must have been about the time I realized what a huge impediment on the real left the atheist play-left has been ever since people mistook the atheist agenda for some kind of bold, lefty thing and followed such idiots into what is continuing into the fourth century of such folly when atheist materialism is the most effective way to kill off anything that a real left would exist to do.

I asked the assembled atheist idiots what would be wrong with Jesus being gay.  Of course, since gay rights were a big issue in lefty land at the time, or at least a pretense in their belief in the equality of gay people was de rigueur, they'd exposed themselves as homophobes by their snark.  So, "Zod" you say that as two men spending time in a "cabin in the woods" had something wrong with it.  Could be the veneer over your real attitude against gay men needs a bit of gluing down, there, boy.

I don't, for the record, live in the woods.  I live at the edge of a field.

The angry, stupid invective that atheists practice is a cover for their panic when they find their narrow little minds can't support the reality of their ideology.  They certainly get angry whenever anyone points out problems with things like doing "science" around the origin of life and the huge improbability of their many scenarios of that - probably more than all of the current fabulistic, religious accounts believed in by contemporary naive fundamentalist belief.   Abiogenesis like materialist cosmology have invented one after another after another of unevidenced scenarios that, when looked at skeptically and with rigor, seem to be the stuff that delusion is made of.  Ideological delusion, not really different from what people like Ken Ham harness to get suckers to fund Noah's Ark museums and which get creeps like Alabama's Roy Moore elected in places like Alabama.   Atheists are just fundamentalist yahoos with degrees that permit them to be snobs.  The snobbery is really the only difference.  Most of them are, really, as stupid as "General Zod".

You know, "Zod," only Simps has ever called me "Sparky".  And he never, ever, addresses what I really said.  Just two of the many things things you have in common.  It's my experience that most atheists, when challenged, chicken out of defending what they claim and turn to invective. Anyone who has ever kept chickens know that the hens are a lot less silly and less stupid than roosters who strut around and crow and fight and attack.  Thus the title.  Is there anything sillier than an old, aging atheist who struts the stuff they figure is so impressive when it is only silly.

*  I don't think any mathematician has been stupid enough to think that there will ever be a "theory of everything" in mathematics in the way that so many physicists and cosmologists pretend they'll have someday, soon according to some like Sean Carroll.   I am trying to remember that ridiculous claim about a "TOE" being at hand that wasn't made by an ideological atheist and can't remember any religious physicist coming up with such absurd claims.   As I have pointed out,  Carroll, when challenged, had to admit that physics doesn't have a "theory of everything" of even one object in the universe, not one single atom or electron - and it took me more than two weeks to get the ass to admit that - so his claim that a "TOE" will ever come about is entirely absurd.  If they can't do that for even one electron, the entity that generated Heisenberg's famous uncertainty principle, the claim that they'll be able to do that for the entire universe is ideological superstition of the highest order.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Geri Allen - The Experimental Movement

Geri Allen, piano
Dave Holland, bass
Jack DeJohnette, drums

Everyone Uses Neologisms Whenever They Open Their Mouths To Talk

I used to have the common prejudice against neologisms, my self  but then I realized that every word in the dictionary was a neologism at one time so if the prohibition on them were some kind of law, no one would have any language, at all.  

What is wrong with neologisms is that they're often meaningless or used meaninglessly and, most problematic of all, dishonestly.  But what commonly used, standard word you can find in the dictionary hasn't been?  Just look at how the trolls here use "and" and "the".  When they're not used that way and the meaning they are intended to convey is conveyed, today's neologism just might last. 

Even that champion of neologisms, the author of the plays and poems that legend attributes to Shakespeare didn't get all of his introduced into the standard vocabulary.  One I really like that hasn't been comes from Richard II, act 2 scene 3 when Henry IV whines about "upstart unthrifts" taking his stuff that he shouldn't have had to start with.  I like "unthrifts".   I would offer a prize for the best use of it in a comment but I've got no way to convey a prize to anyone.  I don't do PayPal because I don't do anything I don't have to that puts money into the pockets of  tech billionaires.   

I wish someone would come up with an upstart, non-profit alternative to PayPal that would deprive "old money" techie billionaires of money.  Maybe a consortium of non-profits could do that.  I'll bet they'd get millions of people who would prefer to use it.

If 31% Of American Voters And Those Who Corrupt Them Have The Power To Get Millions Killed We Must Disable That Ability

I happened to hear Lawrence O'Donnell talking about the pathological idiocy of Donald Trump threatening nuclear war with his fellow pathological playground bully, the North Korean dictator.  I think my brother's theory that Trump was jealous of Kim Jong Un getting more media coverage for the few TV minutes during which Trump's consciousness works was what caused him to make the unprecedented threat explains it.   Trump is a crime of the Founders, specifically the slave-power faction that wrote the Constitution, inflicting the Electoral College and its inherently undemocratic features on the nation and its posterity.   Trump is the ugly, massive, filthy posterior result of that late 18th century slave power, here and now, today.

As ignorant as Donald Trump are those who, given the terrible first six months of the Trump regime, those 33+/- percent of those who poll as still supporting him are certainly as pathological and ignorant as their Dear Leader.   The 31% of those who Lawrence O'Donnell said poll as being very confident that Donald Trump is capable of handling the crisis with North Korea well.  No one who believes that can be considered to know the first thing about the situation, I would doubt that most of them could locate the Korean Peninsula on a world map, I'll bet lots of them might think it's somewhere in the Middle East which they probably couldn't find on a world map.   

What do we do about the permanent percentage of idiots who have the ability to result in a Trump regime?   With the Trump regime following so closely on what was among the worst presidencies in history, that of the Electoral College - Republican Bush v. Gore Supreme Court majority inflicted George W. Bush regime which brought what was our previous worst American war in our history, an economic disaster, massive theft of public resources, etc. it's clear that that permanent percentage of profoundly ignorant and often maliciously angry, hating American People are a danger to the country and that their power is enhanced by the very undemocratic features of the United States Constitution which have done this, now, twice in this still young century.  within two decades.   That power of the worse among us is enhanced through the mass media, the use of sophisticated analyses of the population of the United States, where the worst of the worst are concentrated and the suppression of the votes of those who will not support them has grown more dangerous than at any time in our history.  

If American democracy can't do better than this in the face of modern, mass communication, social-scientific analysis, the permission given to FOX, Sinclair, etc. to lie, if the First Amendment can't be interpreted in a way to enable the ability to tell the truth while disenabling the massive power of persuasive lies, then American democracy has failed a crucial test of this time in one of the worst possible ways,  very likely in the form of millions killed by the TV created despot Donald Trump's baby-man narcissism and stupidity. 

An Answer To The Accusation That I'm Some Kind of Covert Creationist

The time window during which the probabilities involved in the assembly of molecules and, let's not forget, atoms, into the first living organism had to play out isn't four billion years, it's only plausibly a billion or fewer years.  Even starting with primitive amino acids that would supposedly come here on meteorites to form the Earth would have probably been destroyed in conditions on the early Earth and the probabilities of those surviving and, somehow, assembling in ways not seen in nature, without input by the designs of scientists in laboratories are subject to what are certainly very, very long odds that don't favor it happening within the time frame of the Earth forming and life first arising on it.

The only plausible means of speeding things up is through some imposed design that winnows out the probabilities*.     At least I can't think of another one which doesn't involve some unknown process of nature, unaided by some intelligence.  If you can come up with one which isn't the product of your intelligent desire to get out of the probability trap you've made for a materialist scenario, I'd love to know what that is.

I have listened to one of the Altenberg 16 talking about this stuff and as soon as he used the term "pre-biological evolution" I came to suspect that even those radicals who admit a good part of the improbability of the neo-Darwinian orthodoxy that holds hegemony over science and popular science don't seem to be able to admit that they've got to invent stuff that is unevidenced and unobserved to avoid the implausibility of it having happened without design, by random combinations within the time period they propose.

It might be time to admit that all of the various scenarios that have been thought up to give a purely materialistic scheme of how life arose are, themselves, the product of intelligent design and like all ideologically motivated designs, they are a product of intentionality.  All of them have to leave out parts of the problem which their rivals or critics can bring up at any time in order to dissuade people from believing in them.  I doubt that even a great council of atheist abiogenesists could come up with a scheme that would avoid any necessity of stacking improbabilities to favor their grand design in some way, leave our or try to diminish problems to bias the probabilities, or consider all of the possible problems involved in the first organism just happening to come together by chance.

As I've said before, it's not only as improbable as a drop of ink in a bathtub of water reforming itself out of pure chance, it is more like several drops of different colored ink coming together in a tub to make a single, combined drop in exactly the same place and remaining together and reproducing itself.

If I hadn't been forced to consider these things, considering the range of problems involved I would have remained unconvinced of the greater probability that some kind of intention had a role in the creation of life than in the conventional, atheist, assertion that it happened by random chance - the default god of conventional neo-Darwinism.  I had to read the conventional neo-Darwinists and think hard about what they were claiming to become convinced that their entire range of ever shifting claims which decayed and eroded as early, complex pre-biological molecules would have in the formation of the Earth and its physical and chemical conditions.   I can assure you, Genesis had nothing to do with it as the Catholicism I was raised in didn't hold that Genesis was either a modern historical or scientific account of factual history.  I find the conjecture of those who composed Genesis impressive in its insights, in places, especially as interpreted by the most sophisticated of the scholars who have studied the scriptures,  Brueggemann, of course, being among the first of those but it's not science and it's not history.   

There is a paranoia in the culture and consciousness of atheism that people are always trying to insert supernaturalism into something.  Daniel Dennett, one of the stupidest of today's neo-Darwinian fanatics is always making that accusation against real scientists who are both smarter and more level-headed atheists than he is.  But there is one thing that is clear,  there is no way to insert religion into science covertly.  All of the monotheistic religions I know of carry moral prohibitions against lying and all of them NEED ANY ADVOCACY FOR THEM TO BE OVERT AND DECLARED.  If I wanted to convert an atheist scientist to Islam or Christianity, I would have to be up front and clear about that.  Merely pointing out the improbability of the various atheist ideological insertions into science and the wacky, improbable and ridiculous claims made to do that - many of those accepted as having the status of science by scientists - doesn't do anything to force religion into science.  You can't do that covertly as atheism has inserted itself into science, over and over again. Atheism doesn't have any moral commandment against lying and to tell the truth.  Maybe that's why people haven't admitted that it is one of the major pollutants of science (especially the softer and pseudo-social-sciences) and the culture of science, right now.   How else do you think the abiogenesists have gotten away with what they're claiming?

Oh, and, by the way,  Darwinism isn't the same thing as evolution.  Darwinism is, first and foremost, the belief that his theory of natural selection is true and it is the engine of evolution.  I have come, by similar study of the claims of Darwinists, to think natural selection is an illusion, an imposition of the British economic and social class system onto nature, as Marx observed in his reconsideration of it. As I said yesterday,  I've always believed in evolution,  I'm an Irish American, I despise the British and all other class systems.

* I think that is what the current, minor fad of atheist-materialist panpsychism among people like Strawson and Nagel is an attempt to do, though I think it is unpersuasive and not only can't sustain materialism but is a total refutation of it.   Rupert Sheldrake has pointed out that you could limit the range of non-living things that had consciousness to "self-organized systems" but I don't see how that can get you out of problems similar to those involved in explaining the consciousness of living beings and where their consciousness comes from.  I don't think you can get away from consciousness having to be a non-material realm and have consciousness mean anything or match the human experience of consciousness, which is necessary for anything concerning it to be rationally persuasive instead of ideologically adopted.   I don't have any prejudice against physical objects but I don't think there is any way to claim that they have consciousness in the same way that organisms exhibit.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

I'll Say It Alan Dershowitz Is A Racist Scumbag

Rolls Royce ambulance chaser,  Alan Dershowitz,  went on the Tucker Carlson show with Laura Ingraham filling in to slam the Honorable Maxine Waters when she pointed out his race-baiting the entire city of Washington, DC was racist.   You can read what the scumball said to the racist Ingraham at the link, I'm not quoting the piece of crap.   That he was on with a racist, race-baiter on a racist network should be considered to have burned any last shreds of his credibility that might have avoided his decades of setting fire to it  

Of course, like so many others who, long ago, had some shreds of credibility, and even a few who actually did, The Dersh has destroyed that over the treasonous Donald Trump.   In his case it probably has nothing more to it than his addiction for publicity.  

Actually, Maxine Waters didn't say that Dershowitz was a racist, she said that his race-baiting an entire city based on its racial character was racist.   But I don't have any problem saying that someone who does that is a racist.  His past claims of supporting civil rights is no more durable than his former claims to be a civil libertarian, something he pretty much destroyed in his infamous advocacy of torture.   

Peter Thiel, Go To Hell

Report: Peter Thiel Says Trump Admin ‘Incompetent,’ May End In ‘Disaster’

Unfortunately, as the talk today is that the idiot might bring on a nuclear war with North Korea, we might all be headed that way. 

It's a big mistake to allow people to become billionaires, they are the greatest force for corruption in the world, today and they have a tendency to think they're geniuses when they're just clever and lucky and unscrupulous. 

The Association Fallacy Is One of Atheists Favorites - Hate Mail

I have had an atheist of the materialist scientistic sort claim that some of the arguments " denying evolution" are taken from "YECs", which stands for the kind of people who deny evolution and believe the earth is a few thousand instead of billions of years old.  Which only goes to show something I've pointed out a number of times, atheists don't read and they don't have any problem lying about what they haven't read, even those who have read it.

- I have never made an argument against the reality of evolution in my life. 

- I have never not held that the Earth is somewhere between four and three billion years old and the universe, as I recall, is about 13 billion years old, give or take a few billion.  

- And until there is some good, scientific reason to believe otherwise, I won't change my beliefs on those things. 

So, having provided those corrections which will be ignored by such scientistic atheist materialists* because they don't read and have such a notable propensity to lie, especially when they've got nuttin', so pretty much always, I will go on. 

That some people who do "intelligent design" for a living know some of the criticisms of Darwinism and things like the pseudo-science of abiogenesis and many of the many claims made about them doesn't refute those criticisms.  In fact, on the few occasions I've listened to people like Stephen Meyer or read what they wrote, they often back up what they say by citing Darwinists, evolutionists or others who work in conventional science and the philosophy of science who would certainly not like Meyer or the Discovery Institute or creationism of any kind.  Quite often it is such people who have bothered to read the literature which is ignored by atheists who figure they just know what they want to believe is true. 

But just because you think someone has cooties doesn't mean that they don't get to cite a scientific or logical argument.   Just like they can cite the literary and historical record, as long as they do so honestly.  THAT, BY THE WAY, DOESN'T MEAN THAT YOU HAVE TO BUY THEIR CONCLUSION WHOLE HOG, SOMETHING WHICH SEEMS TO COME AS A SOCKING SURPRISE TO PEOPLE WHO CONDUCT A LIFE OF THE MIND ON THE BASIS OF FASHION OR SPORTS FANDOM. 

Anyone who finds or comes up with a good criticism of an idea has come up with a good criticism and the only ways to refute it are a. to forthrightly refute their arguments with better arguments and better evidence or, b. in the somewhat slipperier attempt to invalidate their original argument.  I say that second one is slipperier because it is often harder or impossible and because claiming to have done that when they have not is one of the favorite dodges used by materialists and atheists often claiming to do so out of some pseudo-scientific practice that only impresses people unable to follow the argument.   The logical positivists loved to pull that one which impressed many an ignorant undergrad and even many with PhDs.  

The attempt to discredit what someone said because someone else has said it is a form of the association fallacy in its most vulgar and dishonest ad hominem form.  It is a sort of double logical fallacy.   For all of their habit of claiming the violation of logical fallacy,   the adherents of popular atheism (including many eminent scientists and other scholars, nowadays) commit them by the truck load.   

Specifically,  in the case that brought on this, my criticism of the ridiculous "RNA world" scheme has been most rigorously criticized by conventional scientists who point out that the random chance feature of the claims, that RNA that was able to replicate itself (of necessity a very complex molecule doing what it is currently not able to do under their scenario) just happened to assemble without biological processes, before biology began on Earth, are absurd.  The probabilities involved are staggeringly high AGAINST the possibility that I wouldn't have any problem calling a belief in it rankest superstition.  One of a number which ideological materialist scientists have inserted directly into science.  That is something that has been pointed out by scientists and other critics without any desire to address whether or not intelligent design is involved in the origin of life and the evolution of life producing biological diversity.  

The problems of thinking up and theorizing any plausible scenario for the original organism which was able to reproduce on the basis of random chance is based in a belief that given enough time any probability can gain plausibility.  But that doesn't take into account that there are also competing possible scenarios that would, then, also gain in plausibility of being the eventual outcome.  In this case, made ideologically by an atheist, it run straight into one of their old arguments about the supposed rarity of life in the universe.  As my dear old Latin teacher tried it on me, asking why there was this huge lifeless universe out there if there was a God**.   Of course, always seeking to have it both ways, on other occasions ( I believe it was after watching the Carl Sagan act on TV) he argued that if there were extraterrestrial life that would also prove that there was no God.  

The favorite form of argument that such atheists use is always the "heads I win, tails you lose" one. It's a rare popular atheist celebrity who hasn't pulled that one, one way or another.

I suspect if it were possible to calculate the probability of any of the proposed, often violently competing scenarios dreamt up by abiogenesists, and the amount of time it would take to work through even half of the possible combinations before the probability of their favored result happening, you would run out of seconds in the life of the universe to get there.  Even using the popular claim that there are jillions of life possible worlds out there, by the rules of probability, most of those would have to remain lifeless unless you figure that there is something in the universe that favors the rise of life.  In which case that makes it a better argument that that something is designed into the universe than the one that atheists constructed their probability god out of.  

*  I wouldn't call them SAMs because it sounds too friendly, though they do have a propensity to go off with both guns blazing on the least provocation without knowing what they're shooting at, like Yosemite Sam.  

** Of course the answer to that is that God might have other reasons for doing it that way that don't involve something we know about.   Atheists don't seem to like the possibility that they haven't gotten that kind of thing all figured out to start with.  A probability which seems very probable and which covers us all.

Hate Update:   You might want to look at this article by a supporter of "RNA World" conjecture in which some of the serious, I would say fatal, problems with the theory are discussed.  As the title indicates, the argument seems to be based on what are alleged to be the even worse competing scenarios.  This kind of stuff is hardly a secret except to those who make everything a secret through their determined, self-chosen ignorance. 

The inadequacy of other, competing ideas doesn't do the first thing to make the idea you favor any better than it is.  Considering the possibility that there could be thousands, maybe millions of such speculations there isn't any possible means of knowing where in the scale of improbability the theory you like sits.   I will point out that intelligent design is as capable of inventing multiple scenarios that are able to include all evidence science can come up with, not least of all because anything science comes up with would depend on intelligently designed experiments and arguments to support it.  

I think origin of life stuff is unknowable and, therefore, any claims made about how it happened are not really science, not so long as it's a claim about what actually happened, 3 billion + years ago in the lost past.  Even an experiment that "created" "life" wouldn't get the atheist where they want to.  

Monday, August 7, 2017

We Cannot Have A President Under Investigation

I am quite sick again today so I'm not feeling up to writing  In the mean time I recommend the great Bill Moyers recollections about one of the things that happened in what was almost certainly the greatest week American liberalism had in my lifetime, what I have identified as the highest point that American liberalism has so far reached, what, if we don't make ourselves lucky, will be the last great week of American liberalism.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Sunday Afternoon Radio Drama - Ann Cleeves (adapted by Iain Finlay MacLeod) - White Nights

Atmospheric crime drama set in Shetland at midsummer - the time of white nights, when the sun never quite leaves the sky and birds sing at midnight.

The launch of Bella Sinclair's art exhibition, at the Herring House Gallery in the remote hamlet of Biddista, is ruined by the appearance of a distressed stranger, claiming amnesia. The man is later found hanged but local detective Jimmy Perez has a hunch that it's murder not suicide.

When the dead stranger is finally identified, strands of clues point towards a dark secret held deep within the collective memory of the community, one which has brought death to the present.


D.I. Jimmy Perez ..... Steven Robertson
Kenny ..... Finlay Welsh
Edith ..... Anne Lacey
Bella ..... Eileen McCallum
Fran ..... Tracy Wiles
D.I. Roy Taylor ..... Robin Laing
Peter ..... Steven McNicoll
Roddy ..... Finn den Hertog

Producer: Kirsteen Cameron.