It is November 11th. Many of us lost dear ones to a battle fought during WW I and WW II. My grandfather lost his brother. One of my uncles “survived” D-Day, but he was sick for years. The Canadian government provided him with the little house he still lives in. I believe that for him, that house is like a security blanket. He does not know how he survived. I may have told you that I visited all the D-Day beaches with another survivor. We also have dear ones who died in Vietnam, in the Middle-East and elsewhere.
Somehow WW II is the one war I find particularly atrocious. Hitler is responsible for the death of 6 million Jews. But Hitler was also a dictator who harmed the people of Germany using the war reparations imposed on Germany under the terms of the Treaty of Versailles (28 June 1919). Fortunately, this mistake was carefully avoided after WW II.
I am pleased to see that President Obama is looking after the veterans of wars fought in the wake of 9/11, as if these brutal attacks had not made enough victims. I am also pleased that President Obama was re-elected. He did not have the funds Mr Romney could use, but he went to the people and there were last-minute endorsements from influential sources.
I wish to thank my WordPress colleagues and followers who clicked the “I like” button and those who did not. It was magical. A little compassion goes a very long way. You were very helpful. If you are the victim of fraud, I will be there for you and will not suspect carelessness on your part. We all experience difficulties we keep to ourselves because we consider these personal. However, fraud is an exception. One tells so others are warned. The advice I gave you is advice that was given to me.
Yesterday, I was too tired to write a blog. I had stayed up to watch the results of the election.
As usual, CNN covered the event thoroughly. When Wolf Blitzer referred to President Obama, he called him the President of the United States and he called Mr Romney, Governor Romney. In the end, President Obama remained Barack Obama, President of the United States of America.
As for Mr Romney, he was gracious in defeat and he seemed freed of the constraints of extremists in the Republican Party. President Obama spoke with Governor Romney and they may speak again. It is too soon to tell in what capacity Mr Romney could help his country, but discarding talent or humiliating people is not the President’s approach. Remember my little blog on the Five Presidents. But to return to Mr Romney, according to a close friend, he “would be willing to work for Barack Obama.” (The Telegraph, UK). This link may be corrupt as well as links listed under NEWS. I inserted them yesterday, but they may lead to today’s news.
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I am featuring Mary Cassatt (May 22, 1844 – June 14, 1926). Artist Mary Cassatt was born in the United States, but lived in France for most of her adult life. She ended up befriending Edgar Degas, joined the Impressionists, and was influenced by Japonisme. Mary Cassatt did not marry. She felt she could not be a wife, a mother, and an artist. However she painted women, especially women as mothers and she made lovely portraits of children.
Being a woman proved an obstacle to Mary Cassatt’s career. She could not enter schools such as France’s École des Beaux-Arts, in Paris. However, the Impressionists opened a few doors for her and her art remains. She has left a precious legacy.
I wrote my final blog on the American presidential election and will be posting it after I send the News. There is more to say about the “Noble Savage” and other topics.
The article I will post I about planned parenthood. I am making the point that there is hypocrisy in the attitude of Republicans. If a weathy person gets sicks, he or she can afford treatment and medication. Moreover, a wealthy woman can manage if and when she will have a child. She can buy birth control and she can buy an abortion. Moreover, she can also afford children and can hire help in caring for them.
But my post lacks an important paragraph which would have to do with a woman’s right to say “no” to unprotected sexual intercourse. There is nothing wrong with a woman saying “no,” until she is ready to have a child. In fact, there are still women who say “no” until they have found a husband or are in a stable and permanent relationship. If a man cannot understand a woman’s wish to wait, it may well be prudent to let him go. Do not listen to such arguments as the classic you-don’t-love-me-if-you-wont… In other words, do not let a man bully (that word again!) you into sexual intercourse. Walk away as fast as you can and do not look back.
“So the nature of war, consisteth not in actuall fighting; but in the known disposition thereto, during all the time there is no assurance to the contrary.” (The Leviathan,Chapter XIII)
Hobbes identified “three principall causes of quarrell. First, competition; Secondly, Diffidence; Thirdly, Glory. The first maketh man invade for gain; the second, for Safety; and the third, for Reputation. The first use Violence, to make themselves Masters of other mens persons, wives, children, and cattell; the second, to defend them; the third, for trifles, as a word, a smile, a different opinion, and any other signe of undervalue, either direct in their Persons, or by reflexion in their Kindred, their Friends, their Nation, their Profession, or their Name.”
What we heard and saw in this week debate, held on 16 October 2012, is one man, President Obama, defending himself against false accusations and false accusations may eventually lead a man to say: “You’re lying.” The debate turned into a quarrel and President Obama defended himself, for his own safety. Human beings are born equipped with an instinct for self-preservation. John Locke opposed inneism, but to my knowledge, he did not negate the innateness of man’s instinct for self-preservation. It is the instinct that motivates individuals to protect themselves and, at times, to enter into a Social Contract to ensure their safety.
In Chapter XIV of the Leviathan, Hobbes writes that “no man can transferre, or lay down his Right to save himselfe from Death, Wounds, and Imprisonment.”
In the case of the October 16th debate, no one had to fear death and imprisonment, but wounds were being inflicted. Mr Romney indulged in machiavelianism: the end justifies the means. I therefore believe that the winner in the October 16th, 2012 debate is President Obama. Defending oneself seems legitimate.
The Near and Middle East
Moreover, if war is a constant feature in human behaviour, the US and the world may be at risk again (please see the New York Times, 20 October 2012, for an analysis), “Mr. Romney has repeatedly criticized the president as showing weakness on Iran and failing to stand firmly with Israel against the Iranian nuclear threat.”
Mr Romney should know better. It isn’t in the best interest of the United States to wage war in the Near and Middle East. Citizens of the Near and Middle East loathe the United States. I would rephrase the above quotation. It would read: “The world must stand firmly in opposing nuclear threat.”
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Iranian President, is no choirboy. If the US takes sides, it may provoke him into greater adversity.
Besides, we all know that Mr Romney is seeking the Presidency of the United States in order to spare the rich their fair share of taxes, which is the freedom we surrender, the social contract, in order to live safely.
Let this gentleman guide you into a better future. And in return be his guide. He has paid his dues, i.e. taxes. As for Mr Romney, having studied the social contract, I am rather surprised he is even allowed to drive his car(s) on the highways of America. Citizens pay their income tax. Is there any way his indebtedness to the United States could be assessed?
Yesterday, my reader was not accessible. It was filled with blogs from I person I follow, I tried to get beyond these posts, but gave up after two hours. Does WordPress have a way of controlling this problem. I would like to read the blogs I was sent, but one blog would give me access to all the blogs the person I follow has written. Then I would read all of the blogs I follow. Doing so is very important.
Nicholas Roerich, (October 9, 1874 – December 13, 1947)
I am sending the news without commenting on Nicholas Roerich whose life and times are fascinating. It is best I discuss Roerich separately as I wish to send the News as quickly as possible.
Please note that last night’s debate between President Obama and Mr Romney can be watched on the New York Times and elsewhere.
I have been extremely busy during the last few days. As a result, it has not been possible for me to post blogs.
“Rameau was the greatest ballet composer of all times. The genius of his creation rests on one hand on his perfect artistic permeation by folk-dance types, on the other hand on the constant preservation of living contact with the practical requirements of the ballet stage, which prevented an estrangement between the expression of the body from the spirit of absolute music.”
His ballets were suites (called “ordre” by François Couperin): gavottes, minuets, loures, rigaudons, passepieds, tambourins, and musettes. These pieces are usually gleaned from various folk dances, such as the Spanish and possibly Portuguese passacaglia.
Absolute music is self-referential. It excludes all pieces that have so much as a title, such as Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons.” Music that is not self-referential is called programmatic or program music.
Today, I wish to express a degree of indignation. As you know, a video ridiculing Prophet Muhammad was seen on YouTube and, therefore, globally. Making and showing such a video was juvenile behaviour. To the individuals who think this was great fun, “boys will be boys,” I want to say that the persons who made the video acted irresponsibly and recklessly.
Inflammatory videos can lead to the death of innocent people and they invite a repetition of the attacks of 9/11. Moreover, people who show hatred harm the effort of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and President Obama. They also harm the reputation of Americans who are respectful of other cultures.
It would seem appropriate to ask the persons who produced the video ridiculing Prophet Muhammad to go and apologize to the grieving families of the four persons who died in Lybia: Christopher Stevens, US Ambassador to Libya, Sean Smith, a Foreign Service information management officer, former Navy SEALs Tyrone S. Woods and Glen A. Doherty.
My apologies. I thought two persons had died in Lybia, but there were four victims. (See CBS News, 14 September 2012.)
It was the saddest of days. I was in my office, but was told to come and see what was happening in New York. We were crying. All flights to the United States were redirected to Canada and in localities where there were no hotels, motels, inns, such as Gander, Newfoundland, local families took in bewildered passengers.
I worried. If they needed medication, did they have enough? Did they have their nightgowns or pyjamas. Little things. I think my concerns were of a motherly kind.
However, later that day, I received a telephone call from a person of considerable influence in Ottawa, Allan J. MacEachen. We discussed the attacks. He wanted to know what I would do under such circumstances. I answered that, personally, if I were the President of the United States, I would not do anything. I explained that, in my opinion, the terrorists had to be tracked down, but that the United States should not engage in a war.
And what would you do as a Canadian, he asked. I answered that, in my opinion, we were doing what we could and should do. Planes headed for the United States were landing in Canada. We had to be compassionate, hospitable, generous. We had to be good neighbours.
President Obama’s Campaign
As a Canadian, I cannot even imagine life without the social programs put into place about 50 years ago. The person I mentioned above, had lost his elections and was coming back to Antigonish, Nova Scotia. However, Lester B. Pearson (23 April 1897 – 27 December 1972), an extraordinary Canadian, asked him to stay in Ottawa and design social programs: universal health care, students loans, the Canada Pension Plan, which he did. We are very fortunate. I have written a blog about this person, the Honourable Allan J. MacEachen.
On Tuesday, September 4th, Quebecers go to the Election Polls. The campaign has been brief. Last night, September 1st, I heard that Pauline Marois could well be the next Premier. I then looked at my Twitter page. A leading journalist, Don Macpherson, was asking whether or not people would remain in Quebec if one of the Indépendantistes candidates won. Most of the people who replied were planning to leave.