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Sunday, May 31, 2015

Musical Humor

(For politics, please scroll down)

On Sunday, May 17, I took one of the homeschool group's 2015 seniors to the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts to hear the Choral Arts Society of Washington's outstanding performance of Carl Orff's Carmina Burana, the words of which are in Latin and German.

The playbill provided a translation of the lyrics. Without such a translation — or without knowledge of the two languages in which the words if Carmina Burana was written — a listener might think that these are the words to "O Fortuna," the signature portion of Carmina Burana [SPEW ALERT!]:

Actual lyrics below the fold:

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Open Thread

(For other material, please scroll down)

So, what's on your mind?

Here is your chance to opine according to the parameters below:

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Revisiting Baltimore (With Addendum)

The killings in Baltimore continue — according to some recent reports, at an accelerated rate since Freddie Gray's death and subsequent riots; see Baltimore Police Commissioner: Police Having Trouble Policing, Being Surrounded At Every Call.

Who is so foolish as to believe that indicting six Baltimore police officers for the death of Freddie Gray will make a substantial difference in what Baltimore has become? May 2015 is the deadliest month Baltimore has seen in more than 15 years. More than two dozen shootings over the holiday weekend alone....

Graphic by at Denise Lu @ the Washington Post

From this Washington Post article (May 17, 2015):
After rioters burned Baltimore, killings pile up largely under the radar

BALTIMORE — Andre Hunt counseled troubled kids through the Boys and Girls Club. He volunteered at the local NAACP chapter. A barber, he befriended the son of an assistant high school principal, swapping tales of football and life while the boy grew into adulthood under the clips of his shears.

“He was like a big brother to my son,” the mother, Karima Carrington, said of her trips to Cut Masters on Liberty Heights Ave­nue.

The 28-year-old Hunt was lured out of the barbershop, according to his attorney, and shot in the back of the head on the afternoon of April 29. He was among more than 30 people slain in Baltimore in 30 days, an alarming number of killings and part of an undercurrent of violence here.

Although riots and protests after the death of Freddie Gray, who was injured in police custody, brought national attention to the city, the slayings have attracted little notice.


From mid-April to mid-May, 31 people were killed, and 39 others were wounded by gunfire. Twice, 10 people were shot on a single day. As of Friday, the deadly burst has pushed the city’s homicide count to 91, 21 above last year at the same time. In the District, 40 people had been slain as of Friday, not including four people found dead Thursday in cases police said are being investigated as homicides but are awaiting a ruling by the medical examiner.

Baltimore has historically been a violent city, earning a moniker of “Mob Town” during gang riots of the 1850s. Homicides topped 300 for 10 consecutive years in the 1990s. Although the annual figure has fallen to the low 200s, the city remains among the top tier in per capita murders, ranking fifth in 2013, behind Detroit, New Orleans, Newark and St. Louis....
I encourage you to read the entire May 17, 2015 article, copied and pasted below the fold for those of you who don't have subscriptions to the Washington Post.

Considering the above, what do you specifically propose as feasible solutions to the myriad problems of Baltimore?

MUST-READ ADDENDUM: Baltimore residents fearful amid rash of homicides (AP on May 28, 2015).

Aforementioned full article from the Washington Post:

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

The DIA: ISIS "A Strategic Asset"?

Syrian and Iraqi areas currently controlled by ISIS (in dark red)
According to a recent report at Judicial Report (via Levant Report):


The document shows that as early as 2012, U.S. intelligence predicted the rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS), but instead of clearly delineating the group as an enemy, the report envisions the terror group as a U.S. strategic asset.

While a number of analysts and journalists have documented long ago the role of western intelligence agencies in the formation and training of the armed opposition in Syria, this is the highest level internal U.S. intelligence confirmation of the theory that western governments fundamentally see ISIS as their own tool for regime change in Syria. The document matter-of-factly states just that scenario....
Read the rest HERE.

The media yawn.

The American people yawn — even as on May 25, 2015, CNN publishes ISIS horror grows: Things to know this week about the terrorist group (must-read article and must-watch video).

Meanwhile, in the midst of ISIS victory after ISIS victory, shortly after the fall of Palmyra, Obama Posts Pic Of Two Gay Guys, Titles It, “Love Is Winning”.

And the rough beast slouches on:
William Butler Yeats (1865-1939)


Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: a waste of desert sand;
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Wind shadows of the indignant desert birds.

The darkness drops again but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Memorial Day Weekend 2015

Amid the beginning-of-summer celebrations this Memorial Day, please pause for a few minutes to consider the meaning of this day:

In 1915, inspired by the poem “In Flanders Fields,” Moina Michael replied with her own poem:
We cherish too, the Poppy red
That grows on fields where valor led,
It seems to signal to the skies
That blood of heroes never dies.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

The Slippery Slope

From Stop using ISIL footage, Obama administration asks networks (dated May 13, 2015):
Frustrated that coverage of the war against the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant isn’t reflecting reality on the ground, senior Obama administration officials are urging television networks to update their footage of the radical militant group.
Read the rest HERE.

Hot on the heels of the above May 13, 2015 link come the White House's statement that this administration's strategy to defeat the rising caliphate is working and these photos showing ISIS's celebration of the May 17, 2015 fall of Ramadi, the capital of Anbar Province in Iraq (hat tip to Infidel Bloggers Alliance for the photos below):

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Spring 2015 In Our Yard

Photos taken on Friday, May 15, 2015

Magnificent peonies are blooming in our yard right now!

These peony bushes are about 200 years old and were handed down through my aunt's family. My aunt, my mother's sister-in-law and best friend, was born in 1916.  Evidently, my aunt, my aunt's mother, and my aunt's grandmother had green thumbs!

Three more photos, including close-ups, below the fold.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Open Thread

(For other material, please scroll down)

So, what's on your mind?

Here is your chance to opine within the parameters listed below:

We welcome civil dialogue at Always on Watch. Comments that include any of the following are subject to deletion:
1. Any use of profanity or abusive language
2. Off topic comments and spam
3. Use of personal invective

Note: comments consisting of blog gossip will be deleted as soon as an administrator of this blog becomes aware of such comments.

A link to get this thread started: Soon You Might Be Able To Receive Food Stamps Over The Phone.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Transgender Recognition

Coming soon to schools in your district — and perhaps to other places and organizations receiving federal funds or federal tax exemptions for non-profits (emphases mine):

Monday, May 11, 2015

Our Twilight Zone (Commentary Added)

Consider this (click directly on the graphic to enlarge it):

Below the fold is the commentary that I posted at Infidel Bloggers Alliance on May 8, 2015:

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Freedom Of Expression: Where Do YOU Stand?

Bosch Fawstin, a former Muslim, won the drawing contest with this entry:

I could publish blog post after blog post and write reams about the jihad attack in Garland, Texas, on Sunday, May 4. As I said in my previous post, however, I don't have much time to dedicate to blogging right now.

Please watch the following video clip:

See the entire video HERE at Breitbart in the article "Official: FBI Overlooked Texas Shooter’s Violent Tweets Because ‘There are So Many Like Him'."

Additional reading: Garland Texas by Finntann of Western Hero.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

It's That Time Of Year

(For other material, please scroll down)

For teachers, that is (Click directly on the image to enlarge it):

Right now, I'm groaning under the load of grading the final sets of papers for the 2014-2015 school term: essays, tests, and exams. Following the completion of those tasks comes filling out the report cards. I'm accustomed to this cycle. I've been teaching for over forty years.

I know my limits. So...

Back soon!

Friday, May 1, 2015

This Week On The Gathering Storm

(For other material, please scroll down)

Listen to The Gathering Storm Radio Show, which I co-host with WC.

The show broadcasts live for 30 minutes every Friday beginning at noon, Pacific Time.

The call-in number is 646-915-9870. Callers welcome!

Our scheduled guest this week is Mr. Ducky. We will be discussing war films.