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Thursday, December 31, 2015

2016 Is Here

Worth remembering and resolving to do — even as we, willingly or unwillingly, become more and more immersed in election-year politics:

From Arteide
More of Artists Gives Old Books a Second Life @ this Facebook page.

Remember When?

(For politics, please scroll down)

New Year's Eve in days gone by:

But now...

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Cackling Hillary

Caveat: this blog post is not an endorsement of Donald Trump for President.

Hillary is unlikable on so many levels. Nevertheless, every single Democrat in the land will probably cast the ballot for her. Go figure!

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Video...ATLANTIC JIHAD: The Untold Story of White Slavery

One of Abraham Lincoln's three favorite books was Sufferings in Africa: The Astonishing Account Of A New England Sea Captain Enslaved By North African Arabs by Captain James Riley. It was long a bestseller and published in 1817.

Something rarely discussed in today's history books, but back when I was in school, we covered much of this information in our World History classes (Apologies for the video's length, but the video is worth your time.  Please watch):

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Video: Dog's Best Day - Caitlyn

(For today's political post, see my post today at Infidel Bloggers Alliance: The Islamic State — 21st Century Burke And Hare)

Enjoy this different kind of heartwarming Christmas story (hat tip to MFS-Viral Vids):

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Merry Christmas!

Jon McNaughton's The Nativity

The music of "Silent Night" was written in 1818 by the church organist Franz Xaver Gruber of St Nicholas Church in the village of Oberndorf bei Salzburg for the poem "Stille Nacht, heilige Nacht," written in 1816 by Father Joseph Mohr.  The piece was first performed for the Christmas Eve mass in 1818. The song was sung simultaneously in English and German by troops

During the World War I Christmas Truce of 1914 — an unofficial truce rebuffed by the officers but effected by the soldiers themselves — this beloved Christmas carol was sung simultaneously in English and German as it was the one carol that soldiers on both sides of the battle lines knew.

The version below was filmed on location at the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine in New York City:

From the YouTube blurb:
Meaning / Story behind the song:

Silent Night, Holy Night. All is calm, all is bright!

Sometimes it seems there is little in this world today that is silent, holy, calm, or bright. However noisy, unholy, frenetic, or dark it may appear to be, music such as the immortal hymn, “Silent Night,” carries with it a feeling that can remind us there is still an abundance of virtue all around us. There is hope and beauty. And there is light.

To properly paint this feeling we collaborated with none other than the tenor legend, Plácido Domingo, whose sublime vocal gift is rivaled by his kindness and sincerity. It was a joy to work with him. He is an artist whose illustrious, exalted career has not snuffed out his sweet disposition or his genuine love for the art of music. Joining us are the children from the Cathedral School Choristers, whose pure faith proclaim the profound message of this hymn. We filmed this during an East coast tour in the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine, one of the largest cathedrals in the world, a colossal monument to the greatest gift ever given, the Son of God.

May your Christmas this year be filled with serenity, spirituality, peace, and felicity.

Merry Christmas from The Piano Guys!
Another version...the Vienna Choir Boys performing "Stille Nacht, heilige Nacht":

Artist's explanation for the painting at the top of this blog post:

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Cameo And The Christmas Tree

(Re-post and a Christmas tradition here at Always On Watch)

With thanks to Stogie, who made the graphic for this post in 2011! Click directly on the picture to enlarge it:

I wrote the story below the fold in 2005. Because Cameo, born in July of 2001, is now a senior cat of 14.5 years, she has mellowed. Somewhat, anyway. But the memories of those bygone days of Cameo's terrorizing the Christmas tree still bring a smile to our faces. I hope that the anecdote will bring a smile to your face, too.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Musical Interlude

(For politics, please scroll down)

For this fourth Sunday of Advent 2015, a lively version of one of the most beautiful choruses ever written (from George F. Handel's 1742 oratorio Messiah):

All the words of Messiah are taken directly from the King James Version of the Bible.  This chorus uses the words of Isaiah 9:6.

Personal note:

"For unto Us a Child Is Born" was the first chorus I ever sang when, by audition, I was chosen at the age of 13 to be an alto member of the Choral Arts Society of Washington, under the baton of Maestro Norman Scribner (full biography HERE).  God bless Norman for taking a chance on an ignorant kid like me to give me the opportunity to join a premiere choral group and open up for me a world of music I'd never have known otherwise!

Friday, December 18, 2015

Political Reality

HERE is the reality about our political Parties in 2015 (by Epaminondas at Infidel Bloggers Alliance):
Dear Paul Ryan, I voted for you in 2012, and …

so I feel I have some kind of investment in what you do.

My vote for Mr. Romney and you was in no small part because of your reasoning on budgeting, debt, and the future of the Republic.

However right now, all I see is that the maximum effort,, if that is what it is, is merely to make things worse somewhat more slowly.

Now, if what we are doing is unsustainable (as I believe it is, and as many of you with the appellation “R” have explained), and you have no taste for sticking your flag in the ground, or don’t want to, please explain to me WHY I should not vote for Bernie, or HRC, and thereby vote myself the most free stuff possible, since we’re all going to hell anyway?

Please don’t tell me things would be different with a republican president. First, we may not have one, and second, that president has to operate on the principle that we can’t go on like this, or there will be nothing for anyone.

You have convinced me, NOW, that there may be no point in my vote for an R since I see no R who will act out of conviction for CHANGE. REAL OBJECTIVE CHANGE in the way the republic has been going.

We’re all watching very carefully out here, and I know I am not the only one thinking this way.

The budget you created and the time to review it you set CYNICALLY, at 3 days, for 2009 pages requires a congressman to read 2/3 of the Lord of the RIngs Trilogy every day and COMPREHEND IT.

Sounds a lot like, ‘you have to pass it to find out what’s in it’ without the quote.

I don’t dislike bipartisan action, but suppose bipartisan action will not save the republic.

That you did not include additional provisions over entrance to the USA of those of ANY nation, or other entity which harbors ill intentions towards our civilians is ASTONISHING, and recalls govts like those of Stanley Baldwin.

SO WHAT if Obama vetoes it? It is JUST THAT kind of issue for you to PROVIDE FOR THE COMMON DEFENSE which causes us to wonder if we should vote ourselves the treasury and just put another turkey breast, and brisket in the smoker the morning of the game.

After all, YOU DON’T CARE. Not enough to RAISE HELL.

You can’t IMAGINE how carefully you and the others are being scrutinized every day.

Don’t count on my vote.
Additional reading: GOP Sells America Down the River.

Photo credit

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Monday, December 14, 2015

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Musical Interlude

(For politics, please scroll down)

Enjoy some easy-listening Christmas music, arranged and conducted by American composer and conductor Henry Mancini (1924-1994), winner of four Academy Awards, a Golden Globe, and twenty Grammy Awards, as well as a posthumous Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1995:

An original Christmas piece composed by Henry Mancini (released in 1996):

[Henry Mancini Web Site]

Friday, December 11, 2015

A Brokered GOP Convention?

The GOP — ever able to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

Apparently, Donald Trump, with his soaring popularity in spite of his many controversial statements, has the GOP establishment running scared.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

A Convert To Islam? (Updated)

UPDATE: Gun supplier in California attack connected to shooters’ family by marriage.

ABC News photo purported to be an actual photo of Enrique Marquez, Jr.:

The guy who is apparently being questioned about helping the San Bernardino jihadists to obtain guns

Just the other day, I told a friend that I thought that Enrique Marquez, Jr., could be a convert to Islam. My intuition may be proven correct. Time will tell.

Personal Update

(For politics, please scroll down)

On Monday, December 7, 2015, Tammy, Mr. AOW, and I ventured into D.C. to visit the National Museum of American History. The first exhibit we visited was The Star-Spangled Banner: The Flag That Inspired the National Anthem. Mr. AOW and I have visited that exhibit before, but Tammy had not. Interesting that there were no Muslimas in hijab at that museum!

Monday, December 7, 2015

Michael Raymond Wetzel: Father Of Six

Filmed on Sunday, November 29, 2015 (the first Sunday of Advent 2015):

Wetzel Family Advent Candle Lighting_Hope from Church of the Woods on Vimeo.

Mike Wetzel, a Christian believer, was slaughtered in the name of Allah on December 2, 2015, at a Christmas party at the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino, California.

Obituary HERE.

The 14 victims of the San Bernardino jihad massacre:

Which religion is the religion of peace: Christianity or Islam?

Which group is the greater threat today? Christians or Muslims?

Related reading: Story asserts there were only 13 innocent victims. Guess #14 deserved it?

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Musical Interlude

(For politics, please scroll down)

For the second Sunday of Advent 2015, the twelve voices of Chanticleer:

About Chanticleer, which debuted on June 27, 1978.

The group's home page is HERE.

On November 28, 2015, I had the the opportunity to attend A Chanticleer Christmas. What a delight! A feast for the ears!

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Open Thread

So, what's on your mind?

Please opine on the topic of your choice according to the parameters below:

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Fearing Islamophobia

Political correctness — perhaps compounded by see-something, say-something-get sued — has resulted in the slaughter of 14 people in San Bernardino, California.

Devout Muslim who traveled this year to Saudi Arabia and returned with a Muslima wife.

American born, Farook was a county employee who worked for the health department.

Explosive devices were also found at the scene (Inland Regional Center).

Political correctness in a nutshell:

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Intermittent Comment Moderation

(Please scroll down for recent blog postings. Active threads)

Commenters who frequent this blog: "AOW, why are you using comment moderation so much?"

The West's Destruction

There is a self-hatred in the West that can be considered only as something pathological. The West attempts in a praiseworthy manner to open itself completely to the comprehension of external values, but it no longer loves itself; it now only sees what is despicable and destructive in its own history, while it is no longer able to perceive what is great and pure there. — Pope Benedict XVI

Important reading...M-Day: The Invasion of the West.

Then, there's this, ongoing in institutions of "education" throughout the West: Shakespeare is evil because was white and Eurocentric.

Is the waning of the West inevitable — and deserved?  The West does seem to be filled with self-loathing.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Muslim Reaction To Obama's Designating Climate Change As The World's Greatest Threat

This is priceless:
Is he insane?...He's on drugs? It doesn't make sense. What did you expect from an affirmative action President? This guy has never served in the military[,] never worked a day in his life.
Much more in the May 2015 video below (SPEW ALERT! Set down your beverage before watching!):

The clip of Obama speaking was filmed at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy's commencement in May 2015.