Imagine a really insightful world leader looking at the current 'situation': tens of thousands - millions - of people trying to enter another country than their own. Would not this really insightful world leader pose the simple question: why do all these people want to live somewhere other than their homeland? Might it be because 1) conditions in that country have become unbearable?; 2) there is absolutely no hope for them & their children?; 3) the government in that country is actively persecuting them & would, if possible, eradicate them?; 4) they have nothing to lose?
And then, would not this really insightful world leader ask himself (or herself) what has brought such a dire situation to pass? Might it be that my country has 1) turned a blind eye to such persecution due to a 'conflict of interests'?; 2) hoped the destruction & bloodshed would simply go away? 3) on the sly profited by selling arms to the various parties involved?; 4) in fact created the mess either through bungled decision making or clumsy intervention in the past?
And would not this really insightful world leader then realise that any truly great country has the honesty, integrity & vision to say This Must Stop? That shutting the doors to all these people is simply postponing the problem & running the risk of stoking ever greater hatred for generations to come & sending these people right into the hands of anyone who promises them a better future on no matter what false pretexts (a god, an everlasting bliss, a house, a job, a woman who'll satisfy your every desire)?
And this really insightful world leader would then decide to bring representatives of all these messed up countries around a big table (& it would have to be a big one) & start to discuss in what ways things could change. For example: stop the bombing; cancel all arms deals; set up building programmes (hospitals, schools, repair the infrastructure); begin education & training programmes - not to replicate some other country's way of life but allow these countries to grow & develop their own; draw up genuinely fair trade deals ...
And then this really insightful world leader would see fewer & fewer people seeking to enter his (or her) own country because there were now so many reasons to remain where they were born. Furthermore, they had looked at what was really on offer in these other countries & realised it wasn't as great as they had been told (lied to).
And then this really insightful world leader would turn his (or her) attention to sorting out the misery within their own country & finding ways everyone could truly live & work & enjoy themselves: decent healthcare, education, a sustainable & fair economy ...
And then this really insightful world leader could sit back & pour himself (or herself) a glass of wine & smile for they would have made not just their but everyone's country great again.
More Zorn ('Gnostic Gospels') & David Murray (the famous 'Ming') plus an unknown - 'Makrofauna' by the ampersand glued Vilde&Inga (not, in fact, a new fragrance or hair salon).
The Zorn is disturbingly beautiful - a quality I find with all the CDs in the Mysteries series. That sort of head achey faintly nauseous sensation I experience with incense. The Murray is top flight (so, yes, everyone was right). As for Vilde&Inga it's the type of stochastic twang & screech & rattle I can listen to for hours (or not) depending on the mood. They're soul sisters to Mette Henriette - no doubt a Norwegian music school style declaring itself.
Drove back from the UK with the Murray 'Dark Star' & The Lounge Lizards booming out. I drive therefore I listen (to music) - to rephrase Descartes. How else endure the tedium of sitting behind a wheel?
Now that would be an interesting car programme: following people around with their favourite listening. What do you play, say, on the M25 (The Jam - ha-ha! cheap joke) as against a windy country road? How music can transform the most mundane journey.
I remember listening to Radio 3 one Sunday morning coming up to 8am on the long descending stretch towards the M20. Mozart's aria Soave sia il vento came on just as the sun was rising - so exquisite a coincidence of sound & setting I very nearly swerved off the road.
(After it finished the announcer paused as if he, too, had been profoundly moved & then said "perhaps the most beautiful three minutes ever committed to vinyl". I'd find it hard to disagree.)
& the name for my new programme concept? Tracks - what else?
(Needless to say anyone remotely involved with Top Gear would be strictly off limits).
The Picture of Little J.J. in a Prospect of Flowers
According to the handwriting on the back (whose?) I am pointing out a dog somewhere out of frame. I recognise the high chair - it had a blue & white check pattern. The chair could be separated from the metal stand & I used it for some years afterwards. As for where this is taken - my guess is the front lawn at Freshwinds. The year? 1965.
Anyone familiar with current corporate managerial behaviour - i.e. put a positive spin on everything, dress up facts, pick & choose statistics to suit - should have little difficulty in recognising the way the three-day old US Government is behaving. Except - wait ... wasn't this meant to be a new way of doing politics? Cutting through the professional deception! Power in the hands of the people!