Friday, March 31, 2017

Antonín Dvořák's Stabat Mater, Performed by Elvira Khokhlova, Agunda Kulaeva, Peter Zonn, Mikhail Kazakov, and The State Academic Russian Choir, Directed by Vladimir Fedoseyev

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Statesman of the Century


Patrick J. Buchanan on the great man — Is Putin the ‘Preeminent Statesman’ of Our Times? An excerpt on "what explains Putin’s appeal in the West, despite a press that is every bit as savage as President Trump’s":
    Putin stands against the Western progressive vision of what mankind’s future ought to be. Years ago, he aligned himself with traditionalists, nationalists and populists of the West, and against what they had come to despise in their own decadent civilization.

    What they abhorred, Putin abhorred. He is a God-and-country Russian patriot. He rejects the New World Order established at the Cold War’s end by the United States. Putin puts Russia first.

    And in defying the Americans he speaks for those millions of Europeans who wish to restore their national identities and recapture their lost sovereignty from the supranational European Union. Putin also stands against the progressive moral relativism of a Western elite that has cut its Christian roots to embrace secularism and hedonism.

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Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Gregorio Allegri's Miserere Mei, Sung by the Sixteen, Directed by Harry Christophers


Yesterday was our Diocesan Day of Penance and Mercy. Reading Psalm 51, this text, was my penance.

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A Working Family

Which is why I am not outraged at this story — Upstate NY couple leaves 3 kids, including baby, on mall bench while they work. My guess is that the couple are from Haiti or Francophone Africa. Local right-winger Bob Lonsberry nails it in his column — Those Kids Who Were Left at the Mall:
    They don’t take public assistance, they support themselves, and they were scheduled to work on Saturday cleaning the mall.

    [....]

    These people are a mom and dad who work. Who support their own family. Who pay their own way.

    And they got in a tight spot.

    This wasn’t a good choice, but they felt it was their only choice. Two people from another culture, with mouths to feed and bills to pay.

    It seems like somehow we ought to be able to understand, and spare them the humiliation of public criticism and the expense of criminal prosecution.
Amen. A couple years' back, a single mother from the city was in a similar bind waiting tables near this same "rich-people’s mall."

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Free Women, Free Men

Thriving Taki's Magazine praises the book — ‘Free’ Camille Paglia! — as the failing New York Times pans the "book [a]s like being stranded in a bar where the jukebox has only two songs, both by Pat Benatar" — From Camille Paglia, ‘Free Women, Free Men’ and No Sacred Cows.

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Monday, March 27, 2017

Valerie June Performs "Astral Plane" & "Got Soul"




Two numbers from her new album, The Order Of Time, which I rushed out and bought after hearing this story on the radio — When Valerie June Writes Music, It Begins With A Voice In Her Head.


I've not been able to stop listening to her seamless blend of styles ranging from Bluegrass to Memphis soul, forming a true Americana sound. Not for those who cannot handle Iris DeMent's voice. Here's a mini-documentary from the same fake news outlet the above videos come from:

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Sunday, March 26, 2017

Ludwig van Beethoven's Missa Solemnis, Performed by Lucy Crowe, Jennifer Johnston, Michael Spyres, Matthew Rose, the Monteverdi Choir & the Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique, Directed by Sir John Eliot Gardiner

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Saturday, March 25, 2017

The Crooked North Perform "Farmer John" and "Foolish Builder"

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The Crooked North Perform "Foolish Builder," "Times Like These," "You Don't Fit In," "Where We Are," "You Can't Teach a Ring to Shine," "Farmer John," & "Happy Little Blackbird"


The Crooked North, "a band inspired by the energy of progressive bluegrass, the gritty soul of Americana, and the Rust Belt ethos of their Western New York home," interviewed and seen above on Daniel Gross's "Rochester Indie Musician Spotlight," played tonight at the Little Theatre.

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Saturday, March 18, 2017

Red Baraat Perform "Sialkot," "Zindabad," "Bhangale," & "Se Hace Camino"


Blurbist Bob Boilen writes this of a band with Rochesterian roots:
    Red Baraat's fusion of bhangra, go-go, hip-hop and jazz is driven by frontman Sunny Jain's percolating playing of the dhol, a double-sided drum which forms the rhythmic lattice of support for their boisterous horns and guitar. And though Red Baraat graced the Tiny Desk five years ago, we had to have Jain's band back to celebrate Holi, the Hindu festival of color, of good over evil, and the coming of spring. Usually you'd see the dusting of brightly colored perfumed powders strewn in the air, covering bodies and clothing. The notion of doing that in the office was a fun thought, but the band (with my nudging) opted instead for confetti cannons and passing candied treats. It made for quicker cleanup, but their uplifting spirits lingered on, giving us a chance to shake off the final days of winter and demonstrating why music is so essential to the soul.
I posted that last performance, Red Baraat Perform "Chaal Baby," "Shruggy Ji," and "Dhol 'n' Brass", and quoted the ban leader from a local article — After Dark: Sunny Jain happy to play to a hometown crowd at Lilac Festival:
    The fascinating thing told to us regularly is how people take in our music. Depending upon a person’s musical background or experience, they hear different things. South Asians hear the relationship to baraat brass bands back in India, as well as the Punjabi rhythms. Westerners typically hear New Orleans in our sound and when we’re in DC, people hear the go-go beat. I’ve had Brazilians tell me it sounds like Samba and West Indians say it sounds like Soca. So the elements get blurred and mesh together and at the end of the day, it’s about bringing forth a musical celebration that breaks the division of band and audience.

    For me, music serves as a bridge for the two cultures I grew up with, the Indian and American culture. Bringing together the music of my Indian heritage (Jain bhajans, Punjabi music, Bollywood) and my western upbringing (jazz, rock, funk). In the fall of 2008, I started up Red Baraat with the intention of creating a large acoustic band that brought a powerful primal sound. As I started thinking of instrumentation, I knew that I wanted a wide variety of musical voices and no electrified instruments, just drums and horns. It’s the guys in the band that collectively make up the sound of Red Baraat.
Happy Holi to all.

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Philosophical Trumpism

The Chronicle of Higher Education's Jon Baskin pays a visit to The Claremont Institute and lives to tell about it, and about the "Straussian case for America as a truly great regime, founded predominantly on a combination of Aristotelian and biblical — that is ancient, as opposed to modern — principles" — The Academic Home of Trumpism.

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Why Korea Is Divided


You'd expect more from JSTOR Daily, and certainly hope they could find a better authority than an author "has advanced degrees in library science and film studies and is lapsed in both fields" to write about this topic — Why There Are Two Koreas.

The author's argument that the North's "country’s juche (self-reliance) ideology, essentially born in the cauldron of Japanese and then Soviet interference, has been one of hermetic self-sufficiency" is not wrong, just insufficient. My post eleven years ago when I was still living in the country explains a bit more about the origins of the division — Hiroshima and the Division of Korea.

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Quantum Theory of Humor (QTH)

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St. Mary of the Angels


Two-and-a-half hours or so southwest of here, the church has received a "designation [that] establishes a special connection among the church, Pope Francis and St. Peter, the first pope" — Olean church that inspired Our Lady of Victory becomes WNY's newest basilica.

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Thursday, March 16, 2017

Nicolas Gombert's Missa Media Vita in Morte Sumus ("In the Middle of Life We Are Already Dead Mass") Sung by The Hilliard Ensemble


Not all is lost — Geert Wilders may have lost Netherlands elections but the Dutch are speaking his anti-Islam language. "Holland’s identity does not always mesh easily with that of places like Afghanistan, and for decades Dutch and other European governments have been squeamish about forcing it to do so."

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Hypergamy and Dysgenics

Roissy quotes at length a commenter who "pretty much nailed the essential difference between the sexes (chicks dig power, men dig beauty, eggs are expensive, sperm is cheap, men are expendable, women are perishable) and the nature of the modern sexual market in relation to mating behavior and marriage" — Freelance Comment Of The Week: A Primer On The Modern Sexual Market.

"He makes a good point about postmodern society severing the ancient link between the sexual market and the marriage/monogamy/parenthood market, and an even better point about children focusing women’s attention and preventing female solipsism spirals." Tolle, lege.

Roissy follows up with a post on "the modern sexual market and how it may relate to dysgenic breeding" — The Modern Sexual Market And Our Coming Idiocracy.

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The Progressive American Defined

"A progressive American," writes Linh Dinh," is mostly a jerked puppet who’s outraged solely at preselected triggers" — Postcard from the End of America: Ann Arbor. A commenter to his article Musical Omens called Mr. Dinh "a bar hopping Vietnamese Tocqueville."

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Are We Evolving Towards a Plant-Based Diet?

Researchers "hypothesize that Europeans may be in the process of adapting to a diet rich in fatty acids derived from plant sources, but relatively poor in fatty acids derived from fish or mammals" — Agriculture, dietary changes, and adaptations in fat metabolism from ancient to modern Europeans.

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Can't Blame the White Man for This

He arrived only two centuries ago, and other men only two millennia ago — Hawaiian biodiversity has been declining for millions of years.

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Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Jacob Obrecht's Salve Regina Sung by Cappella Pratensis, Directed by Rebecca Stewart

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Metacognitive Therapy, a.k.a. Controlling Your Thoughts

From the Norwegian University of Science and Technology we learn, "Teaching patients not to ruminate offers important coping skill for depression" — Tackling depression by changing the way you think. That's how I've made it this far without handing over a dime to the Therapy Industrial Complex.

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Invasive Species


"While bison were not introduced by humans to North America, their rapid spread and diversification are hallmarks of an invasive species" — The controversial origin of a symbol of the American west. Will environmentalists now call for their extinction?

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Spirits in the Material World

"The closer you look," writes University of Rochester astrophysicist Adam Frank, "the more the materialist position in physics appears to rest on shaky metaphysical ground" — Minding matter.

"Why does the infinity of parallel universes in the many-worlds interpretation get associated with the sober, hard-nosed position, while including the perceiving subject gets condemned as crossing over to the shores of anti-science at best, or mysticism at worst?"

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Jan Pieterzsoon Swelinck's O Nostre Dieu et Seignuer Amaible, Depuis Le Jour Que Je Vous Vei, & Louez Dieu Tout Hautement, Sung by the Gesualdo Consort Amsterdam, Directed by Harry van der Kamp

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Monday, March 13, 2017

Jan Pietrszoon Sweelinck's "Psalm 122" Sung by Vocaal Ensemble Voxtet


But two-and-a-half minutes of the remarkable heritage the Iowa congressman was referring to when he said, "We can’t restore our civilization with somebody else’s babies" — Rep. Steve King touts ‘Western civilization’ while defending incendiary immigration tweet. "This Western civilization is a superior civilization, and we want to share it with everyone.'

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Geert Wilders for Prime Minister!


Things bode well for the ancestral homeland if one is to trust the only mainstream paper to consistently get our historic election right — The far right party is leading election polls in the Netherlands: Will Geert Wilders be prime minister?

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Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Dietrich Buxtehude's Membra Jesu Nostri, Performed by Maria Cristina Kiehr, Rosa Dominguez, Andreas Scholl, Gerd Türk, Ulrich Messthaler, Chiara Banchini, and Schola Cantorum Basiliensis, directed by René Jacobs

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Poltical Correctness and the Religion of Success

"Selective private colleges have become religious schools," writes self-described "card-carrying member of the liberal elite" William Deresiewicz, and "[t]he religion in question is not Methodism or Catholicism but an extreme version of the belief system of the liberal elite: the liberal professional, managerial, and creative classes" — On Political Correctness.

That, we knew. New is the author's identification of the "one category that the religion of the liberal elite does not recognize—that its purpose, one might almost conclude, is to conceal: class:"
    Class at fancy colleges, as throughout American society, has been the unspeakable word, the great forbidden truth. And the exclusion of class on selective college campuses enables the exclusion of a class. It has long struck me in leftist or PC rhetoric how often “white” is conflated with “wealthy,” as if all white people were wealthy and all wealthy people were white. In fact, more than 40 percent of poor Americans are white. Roughly 60 percent of working-class Americans are white. Almost two-thirds of white Americans are poor or working-class. Altogether, lower-income whites make up about 40 percent of the country, yet they are almost entirely absent on elite college campuses, where they amount, at most, to a few percent and constitute, by a wide margin, the single most underrepresented group.

    We don’t acknowledge class, so there are few affirmative-action programs based on class. Not coincidentally, lower-income whites belong disproportionately to precisely those groups whom it is acceptable and even desirable, in the religion of the colleges, to demonize: conservatives, Christians, people from red states. Selective private colleges are produced by the liberal elite and reproduce it in turn. If it took an electoral catastrophe to remind this elite of the existence (and ultimately, one hopes, the humanity) of the white working class, the fact should come as no surprise. They’ve never met them, so they neither know nor care about them. In the psychic economy of the liberal elite, the white working class plays the role of the repressed. The recent presidential campaign may be understood as the return of that repressed—and the repressed, when it returns, is always monstrous.

    The exclusion of class also enables the concealment of the role that elite colleges play in perpetuating class, which they do through a system that pretends to accomplish the opposite, our so-called meritocracy. Students have as much merit, in general, as their parents can purchase (which, for example, is the reason SAT scores correlate closely with family income). The college admissions process is, as Mitchell L. Stevens writes in Creating a Class, a way of “laundering privilege.”
Also new is what the author describes as "the connection between the religion of success and the religion of political correctness" is new, and explains a lot:
    Political correctness is a fig leaf for the competitive individualism of meritocratic neoliberalism, with its worship of success above all. It provides a moral cover beneath which undergraduates can prosecute their careerist projects undisturbed. Student existence may be understood as largely separated into two non-communicating realms: campus social life (including the classroom understood as a collective space), where the enforcement of political correctness is designed to create an emotionally unthreatening environment; and the individual pursuit of personal advancement, the real business going forward. The moral commitments of the first (which are often transient in any case) are safely isolated from the second.

    What falls between the two is nothing less than the core purpose of a liberal education: inquiry into the fundamental human questions, undertaken through rational discourse. Rational discourse, meaning rational argument: not the us-talk of PC consensus, which isn’t argument, or the them-talk of vituperation (as practiced ubiquitously on social media), which isn’t rational. But inquiry into the fundamental human questions—in the words of Tolstoy, “What shall we do and how shall we live?”—threatens both of the current campus creeds: political correctness, by calling its certainties into question; the religion of success, by calling its values into question. Such inquiry raises the possibility that there are different ways to think and different things to live for.
This explains why the campus SJW focuses its wrath on things like micro-agressions, not macro-aggressions like undeclared foreign wars, opposition to which would threaten the neoliberal global order.

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Saturday, March 4, 2017

Arvo Pärt's "St. John Passion" Performed by the Mogens Dahl Kammerkor, Adam Riis, Jakob Bloch Jespersen, Philippe Skow, Toke Møldrup, Andreas Fosdal, Sebastian Stevensson, Søren Johannsen, Directed by Mogens Dahl

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Playing With Hellfire

"Lana Del Rey promotes witchcraft to topple Trump," we read; "[h]owever, Catholic exorcists are warning that witchcraft is the work of the devil and attempting to use it could have grave consequences" — ‘We can’t use the devil; the devil uses us’: Exorcists fear witchcraft against Donald Trump.

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Break From Beerfast


For Lent in addition to intermittent fasting, I gave up drink, but not on Sundays, which begin tonight, so perhaps I'll break my beerfast with the above — New England-style IPA? It's catching fire across Upstate New York.

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Friday, March 3, 2017

Trad.Attack! Perform "Toru-uss / Pipe-Snake," "Must Madu / Black Snake," "Jaan'kene," & "Kooreke / Precious Cream"


From Estonia, live in Rochester, New York's sister city, Rennes.

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Eugene McCarthy vs. the World

Steve Sailer posts on one of the heroes of Bill Kauffman's Look Homeward America: In Search of Reactionary Radicals, who argued that "how America has been turning into a colony of the rest of the world–a captive of its self-imposed duty to police the world, its borders a mockery for all to cross" — Not Wanting America to be "A Colony of the World" Is McCarthyite.

Others, noted by Mr. Sailer, find such thinking un-American, ranging from an Hispanic journalist to the Libyan strongman who noted that "American is for all of us and the whole world had made and created America" — Jorge Ramos Endorses the Gaddafi Corollary to Invade-Invite.

The former Iranian president agrees — Trump Schooled on WHO WE ARE: "U.S. Belongs to All Nations ... No One May Consider Themselves the Owner and View Others as Guests or Immigrants," Notes Ahmadinejad.

While Mr. Ahmadinejad suggested "the contemporary U.S. belongs to all nations," he at least allowed that this is "including the natives of the land;" the Slovenian philosopher disagrees — Slavoj Žižek: "Everybody in the World Except US Citizens Should be Allowed to Vote and Elect the American Government".

"My job is not to represent the world," said our McCarthyite president the other night, contra the Jorge Ramoses, Gaddafis, Ahmadinejads, and Žižeks. "My job is to represent the United States of America."

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