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Author: gavin Page 1 of 18

Extinction Rebellion

Wednesday 24th April. I joined the Extinction Rebellion at the Marble Arch corner of Hyde Park. They have been there since 15th April. The atmosphere was very good and the protest has been peaceful. I joined Drum Master Tom Morley who with his customary style led a group in exuberant drumming at the corners of the ER encampment. And I after joined those supporting the ‘arrestables’ – those taking the protest further by disobeying police instructions to vacate the road where they had set up tents. Though arrested no one appeared to be harmed. I’m happy and grateful for all the people who are doing this as it’s clear that most of us don’t really understand the gravity of the situation. If we did we would, as Greta Thunberg says, panic .. and transform our societies, systems and ourselves.

Related FB Posts.

Interland

Interland is an interesting resource that gamifies teaching about online safety.

The Collusion Illusion

Glenn Greenwald’s position on the Trump collusion story is one that I entirely agree with. Donald Trump is a horrible individual but there is no evidence that he colluded with the Russians to win the presidency or that he is serving Russian interests because the Russians hold compromising information on him. Cenk Uygur held the view that there was collusion but is backing away from that now that the Muller investigation has found no evidence of such collusion. Cenk continues to hold the view that there are past and present ties between Trump and Russian oligarchs that could influence Trump’s decision making. When Greenwald points out that Trump has taken actions that are very hostile towards Russia, Cenk points to meetings between Trump and Putin whose content Trump has refused to publish and suggests that Trump does not know what will harm Russia unless Putin makes it explicit to him. This is clearly absurd. and it genuinely puzzles me that intelligent people like Cenk Uyger can maintain absurdities and continue to endorse narratives that have no grounding in evidence and are even contradicted by evidence and argument.

Hair and Mozart

Mozart will never seem old.

On Monday evening we saw the musical ‘Hair’ at the New Wimbledon Theatre. I liked the energy of the cast. The dancing was fine and there were the two songs – Age of Aquarius and Good Morning Starshine – but it seemed so dated, and the nudity moment, presumably shocking once, seemed twee and irrelevant.

Sunday – Day 19 Lent

Sandy and I went to church today and then travelled via the riverboat to Leicester Square where we ate at Misato Restaurant.

The church service was a good one about inclusion and the church’s doors being open to everyone. I took communion, as I often do, even though I’m not a ‘confirmed’ member of any church. I can’t say that I’m a believer or a non-believer since I take much of Christian religious language to have symbolic rather than literal significance.

I read that today, 24th March is Telemann’s birthday.

Georg Philipp Telemann (24 March [O.S. 14 March] 1681 – 25 June 1767) (German pronunciation: [ˈteːləman]) was a German Baroquecomposer and multi-instrumentalist. Almost completely self-taught in music, he became a composer against his family’s wishes. After studying in MagdeburgZellerfeld, and Hildesheim, Telemann entered the University of Leipzig to study law, but eventually settled on a career in music. He held important positions in LeipzigSorauEisenach, and Frankfurtbefore settling in Hamburg in 1721, where he became musical director of the five main churches. While Telemann’s career prospered, his personal life was always troubled: his first wife died only a few months after their marriage, and his second wife had extramarital affairs and accumulated a large gambling debt before leaving Telemann.

Wikipedia.

I listen to all the pieces recommended by Clemency Burton-Hill but only share those that I find particularly appealing.

21 March – Mendelssohn


Felix Mendelssohn Piano Trio No.1, op.49 in D-minor

Mendelssohn (1809 – 1847)

Mendelssohn died aged just 38. But he had accomplished so much.

I am reading ‘Year of Wonder‘ by Clemency Burton-Hill. It looks at one piece of classical music each day. A worthwhile book, it prompts listening .. and that leads to more wonderful pieces.


Mendelssohns – Piano Concerto No. 1 in G minor (op. 25) , Yuja Wang, Kurt Masur (Full)

Equinox

I need this. We need this .. Renewal. Rebirth. Monteverdi is a Renaissance composer and this piece of music celebrates, O Zepher Return, celebrates the return to Spring.

From Wikipedia: An equinox is commonly regarded as the instant of time when the plane (extended indefinitely in all directions) of Earth‘s equator passes through the center of the Sun.[3] This occurs twice each year: around 20 March and 23 September. In other words, it is the moment at which the center of the visible Sun is directly above the Equator. In the northern hemisphere, the equinox in March is called the Vernal or Spring Equinox; the September equinox is called the Autumnal or Fall Equinox.

Monday: Day 13

I prepare my meditation space .. but still much needs to be thrown out before I can meditate.

A letter to Stephen Timms

Handed in at my surgery on Friday. pic.twitter.com/CPf4GtJMdJ— Stephen Timms (@stephenctimms) March 18, 2019

There must be a minimum standard beneath which no person should be permitted to fall. Situations like this must be considered an emergency and be corrected immediately.

No Means What?

If Theresa May’s ‘deal’ has been rejected twice by Parliament that suggests that the MPs who voted against it think that there is something intrinsically wrong with it and that they will say no again when asked again to approve it on 23rd March. Unfortunately my naive logic fails because:

1. MPs rejected the deal for different reasons. Some want no Brexit, some a softer Brexit and others a harder Brexit.

2. May is saying to the hard Brexiters that they should accept her deal because however it is presented it can be made harder later. That’s to say that the ‘Irish Backstop’ which guarantees no ‘hard border’ between Ireland and Northern Ireland can be disregarded unilaterally at some future time. Thus she is acting in bad faith towards either the EU or the hard Brexiters.

If the hard Brexiters buy May’s guarantee that the guarantee to the EU is not a guarantee then they will vote for the deal and Parliament’s ‘no’ will become a ‘yes’.

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