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The Hersch

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  1. As it happens, I am sketching out a major essay on Chaplin, who was not only the most brilliant film director and actor in film history, but the most influential figure in the culture and Zeitgeist of the 20th Century; perhaps, for a single individual, in human history. Along with a handful of somewhat lesser lights, and I'm thinking particularly of Andy Warhol, he created modernity in the Western world. Chaplin made only four films in which he spoke, the last of which, "A King in New York," was an unmitigated stinker, but my how he could speak, and what audacious and wonderful movies he made! In my essay to come, which I may publish here, I'll use as a focus and starting point "Monsieur Verdoux," my favorite of all his movies, but will discuss all of his talkies in some depth, and relate their qualities and properties to Chaplin's enormous influence on the wider world. I think it will be quite a ride, if only for myself. More on it to come.
  2. If you love Cezanne, as I do, this show will open your eyes to a whole side of his art that you might never have known was there. It's captivating.
  3. You know, Brady had his studio during the Civil war in the Apex Building, which narrowly escaped demolition during one of the crazes for tearing down wonderful old Washington buildings and putting up new eyesores in their place. Walt Whitman nursed maimed and dying Union soldiers nearby.
  4. You got something with Google? These seemed pretty Google resistant as I wrote them. Tell us what.
  5. Weezy, you might as well tell us what you got, since no one else is saying anything.
  6. * The Republic of Cuba is that "thing" which Fidel Castro overthrew in 1959. In the aftermath of the Spanish-American war of 1898, the U.S. took Cuba away from Spain in that war, and then backed its independence - from 1902-1959, Cuba was a democracy. Well yeah, but it wasn't much good to the Cubans. Under the Fulgencio Batista dictatorship, with the full backing of the US government, Batista revoked all political liberties and spent a couple of decades in power draining the wealth of the Cuban people (into his own bank accounts) and fleecing rich Americans with gambling, drugs, liquor, and prostitution. Castro was a savior.
  7. "Wealthiest criminal", perhaps, but only if you define these terms in narrow and ahistorical ways. How about Caesar Augustus or Caligula? Alexander the allegedly great? Catherine the "Great"? Napoleon, 1st or 3rd? Herr Adolf Hitler? The United States of America, especially in the years 1945 to the present? Or, to take a recently mentioned example, Cecil (let's kill us a passel of black subhuman savages!) Rhodes, or his willing ally Leopold King of the Belgians? The list could be extended from now till Doomsday, and probably will be.
  8. ah, 1902! I remember it well. Wasn't that the year that the Cuban republic was formed, after the US beat poor little Spain to a bloody, whimpering pulp? The year the Charron, Girardot et Voigt , the first fully armoured "tank", was introduced at the Salon de l'Automobile et du cycle in Brussels? Even looks fun to drive! (q.v.). The year that miserable old wretch Cecil Rhodes, the worst figure in the whole of European colonization of Africa, finally did the long-suffering universe a good turn by shoving off into eternal damnation?
  9. Why didn't anyone warn about this bbq joint on 18th St? I had a hankerin for a nice pork bbq sandwhich, so I ordered delivery from this place: pork bbq sandwich, coleslaw, and fries. Everything was so unbelievably bad that after a taste of each I just threw the whole order in the garbage. The best item, such as it was, was the pickle slices that came with the sandwich, and they were from a can. Anyone else been to this hogslop from Hell emporium?
  10. You may certainly have bragging rights for the most answers, although as I'm sure you're aware the only one even remotely correct is "Nope". Don: On the way.
  11. Hey kids! Here is ze shal-onge for you from ze grreatess sorfsmon in all of fronnse! 1. Who wrote the theme to Perry Mason (1958-1967)? 2. What was Frederic March’s last screen appearance? 3. What does that have in common with Robert Ryan? 4. What is today’s (6-13) Saints day? 5. Can you name the murderer of Christopher Marlowe? 6. The Roosevelts: What were the names of the 2 branches, and can you elaborate? 6. What was the Great Renaming? 7. What bridge was originally planned to carry a Metro line under the carriage way between which 2 stations? There! I’ve made these as hard as possible w/ nothing deliberately misleading. No Googling. Whoever submits the most rigorous answers gets undying respect.
  12. I respect every point you make, and actually agree with all of your premises. But I fail to see how they apply to Mr Dylan. Dylan (and I wish he'd chosen another stage name, such as Zimmerman (unlikely) or Jones (if he kept the Dylan forename; it would be very Welsh, don't you see ( like one of his namesakes, the Welsh poet, inexplicably revered). Dylan remains a vital, productive performer, unlike the performers you undboubtedly have in mind, although I have no idea why., in spite of the vocal deficits almost everyone observed, Dylan remains not merely productive but has made himself the richest musician/lyricist in the world if not in human terms then, surpassing even Herbert von Karajan, the aged former Nazi who at the time,of his death was worth a cool zillion. Even in your premises, that should be worth something). PS: I was reflecting upon the great big improvements in the WWW,, especially with the laggard (and niggardly) unlikely improvements in mail-based VM systems, introduced by IBM in 1964 and still going strong at the time I had to bid it a disconsolate farewell, by an ever-improving but step-sister IBM, which has an always ghastly, expanding reputation for screwing shit up, mostly by catering to its least-important (i.e., important constituents which aren't major financial institutions.) Those mailing systems/apps were still roaring forward at the time I had reluctantly to bid it a yearning farewell in 2003, when I Ieft American University behind in 2003 three years later. I was able to retain my happy 23 years, although I had already left the green pastures for the ghastly small town of Wilson NC, my bank having stupidly departed its VM mailing system to sell out to a major regional bank in North Carolina, whose name I do not speak but which you are sure to recognize, and probably bank at.. Mmmm, it was very good for the short-sighted shareholders. PSS I've returned to this forum, as an ever evolving community of once great z/architecture critics. Is the current membership apathetic, or merely uninterested in contentious areas of philosophy, except for the great contributors Don and Al Dente, who himself went away for a long mile, also, I think, out of inescapable real-world tension, to work unfortunately for an aging virulent anti-union young fellow named Mackey, who has himself, unfortunately,' just sold out to a powerful, the richest and most powerful , now currently the most power guy in the world. Guy named Bezos, who has inexplicably also sold out to the horribly powerful daily, the Washington Post, whose editorial views members of the largely sile how current, the community here woefully now meek? No, now how provocative I grow, not a peep. Punkt, schluss! Johnny,, we hardly knew ye!. When will you proudly come marching home? I, for one, miss your clear prose, so beautifully expressed! Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio? where have you gone?
  13. This is what happens when I'm away for a year! Don or others will post on a subject that is right in my wheelhouse without my comment or guidance. I have nothing to disagree withe here; Louis IX really did all these things, but I'd just add: The "innocent until proven guilty" formulation wasn't introduced into the English common law until the great barrister and parliamentarian William Garrow forced the issue in the early 19th century. It's still a universal feature in all the common law countries, most importantly ours, although perhaps more honored in the breach than in th'observance. Non-common-law countries have let it go by, as in all of Western Europe, where guilt is presumed and procedures are often conducted by judges, who are not expected to be neutral and where there are no juries (exceptions abound, particularly in those countries forced to accept constitutions by the U.S. after the War). Even in Britain itself, they now empanel "special juries" expected to find against the defendant and allow majority verdicts even in capital cases. The banning of interest-bearing loans has a number of contradictory aspects. Charging interest (usury) is explicitly banned repeatedly in both the Old Testament and the new. For example: Deuteronomy 23:19 - Thou shalt not lend upon usury to thy brother; usury of money, usury of victuals, usury of any thing that is lent upon usury: or in the gospels: Matthew 25:27 - Thou oughtest therefore to have put my money to the exchangers, and [then] at my coming I should have received mine own with usury. This from one of the parables of Christ, spoken out of his own lips. On the other hand, charging interest on loans made possible the rise of capitalism, a mixed blessing indeed.
  14. I had a great, long conversation with our host yesterday, which touched briefly on the artistry of Bobby Dobby, and which prompts me to post this, Duquesne Whistle, on the Tempest record of 2012. My favorite Dylan song since his "great" period ended in 1977: Even his fugitive voice works on this:
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