Crystal Night, November 10, an Anniversary to Keep in Mind Today

Kristallnacht (Crystal Night)

November 9th, 1938 an event not to be forgotten in post-election euphoria or depression

Crystal Night (Kristallnacht ) was a violent riot against an ethnic group carried out by SA paramilitary forces and civilians on November 9, 1938 while authorities looked on without intervening. (The name comes from the shards of broken glass littering the streets after the ethnically-owned stores, buildings, and places of worship had their windows smashed.)

The attack was under the direction of a person elected in 1930 by promising a return to a glory that ‘only he could accomplish.’ He added heaps of vague promises, including more jobs and a solution to the immigrant problem. He pledged something for every part of society at massive rallies using simple catchphrases repeated over and over.

Happy Anniversary.


Youths attacking Jewish shops (9th November, 1938)

Partial source


The Yale Record Chooses Not Clinton

In journalism, and my opinion, unambiguous writing is the preferred style of communicating. That’s why The Yale Record’s clear un-endorsement of Hillary Clinton resounds through Alice’s proverbial looking glass. For the record, here is what The Record said:

“In its 144-year history, The Yale Record has never endorsed a Democratic candidate for president. In fact, we have never endorsed any candidate for president. This is, in part, due to our strong commitment to being a tax-exempt 501(c)3 organization, which mandates that we are “absolutely prohibited from directly or indirectly participating in, or intervening in, any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office.”

This year’s presidential election is highly unusual, but ultimately no different: The Yale Record believes both candidates to be equally un-endorsable, due to our faithful compliance with the tax code.

In particular, we do not endorse Hillary Clinton’s exemplary leadership during her 30 years in the public eye. We do not support her impressive commitment to serving and improving this country—a commitment to which she has dedicated her entire professional career. Because of unambiguous tax law, we do not encourage you to support the most qualified presidential candidate in modern American history, nor do we encourage all citizens to shatter the glass ceiling once and for all by electing Secretary Clinton on November 8.

The Yale Record has no opinion whatsoever on Dr. Jill Stein.

—The Editorial Board of The Yale Record”


“Old Owl” mascot of The Yale Record

Couldn’t be more clear, eh? Or is it, couldn’t be clearer?

Oh. Bother.

Millions Watched This. Billions Should. If You Haven’t Yet, You Should.

UPDATED February 21, 2017

I am in awe and positive envy of individuals such as Prince Ea who bring clarity to profound ideas. (He published this video in this blog in November 2015, and he owns it.)

I’m sharing the link below to reach as many of the 7,389,641,813* on this globe who have not yet viewed it. Once you watch it, please share this message with a bunch of friends and ask them to tell a bunch as well. (You decide what constitutes a ‘bunch’.)

10,381,275 (UPDATE: 11,783,122 as of February 21, 2017) watched this video thus far. I’m a believer in geometric progression, so it’s possible for us to collectively transform millions of views into billions.

Mr. Ea’s message deserves it. It will be fun to try.

You’re the first of the next bunch of viewers.

*According to Wikipedia, the  World population is 7.4 billion  as of August 2016.

UPDATED: nearly 7.5 billion  as of 9:00 pm February 21, 2017

Close Enough.

Make Enough of Your Free Time and It May Be Oscar in Your Trophy Case

Pixar animators Andrew Coats and Lou Hamou-Lhadj wanted to do something in their ‘free’ time, so they and quite a few colleagues created this technically spectacular animated short, titled “Borrowed Time.”

Seems the bar for great animation gets higher and higher thanks to a couple guys with an idea they wanted to nurture from concept to reality.

Well done, folks.

“Borrowed Time” Animated Short

Make Enough Interruptions, and You Can be Featured in a Textbook

Business schools and schools of psychology and social work all need great stories on which to build their teaching. They want a ‘huuge’ example to drive home their point of view.

Sometimes, you’re presented with a demonstrable doozy.



Make Enough Music and You’ll be Immortal(ized).

In 1958, the classical jazz scene in Harlem was vibrant. Numerous musicians and singers were having too much fun playing and improvising with America’s own classic jazz to have any concerns about their contributions to those of us who would follow.

Esquire Magazine figured they’d change that. They hired a fellow named Art Kane to shoot a picture of as many jazz people as he could locate. A new ‘photographer’ — this was his first assignment — Art picked a neighborhood in Harlem since he did not have a studio, and placed a few calls to see whom he could corral for the shoot at 10 am on the appointed date. (Note to young readers: ‘placing a call’ meant putting a nickel in a pay phone, dialing a number and hoping someone would actually answer since there were no answering machines, the forerunners to the voice mailbox.)

Fortunately, word-of-mouth still worked back then. (The modern term is ‘go viral,’ again for the young readers.)

The result is “A Great Day in Harlem 1958”

Here it is via Wikipedia;

Thanks to a Facebook friend, we came across part one of a documentary titled, “A Great Day in Harlem,” by  that highlights the ‘behind the scenes story’ of how the most famous photograph in classic jazz history was conceived and created.

Invest nine minutes and 55 seconds watching it. Priceless. (By the way, this is merely the opening segment of an Academy-Award-nominated documentary by Jean Bach.)

If you’re read this far, you deserve a priceless reward. This blog has arranged to deliver one, thanks to the New Reformation Jazz Band (NRB) based in Saginaw, Michigan. It is a track from one of its most popular CDs, “Live at the Nugget,” recorded in the Celebrity Showroom at the Nugget Casino Resort in Sparks, Nevada, and available for purchase wherever music is downloadable.


Make Enough Compromises and You’ll Find the Bottom of Your Own Barrel (Link from which this content was copied)

Chris Ladd, a self-described “GOP-Lifer” articulates well my current frustration as a recovering Republican.

Resignation letter
Posted on July 22, 2016 by goplifer
Yesterday I resigned my position in the York Township Republican Committeemen’s Organization. Below is the letter I sent to the chairman explaining my decision.


Chairman Cuzzone:

We come together in political parties to magnify our influence. An organized representative institution can give weight to our will in ways we could not accomplish on our own. Working with others gives us power, but at the cost of constant, calculated compromise. No two people will agree on everything. There is no moral purity in politics.

If compromise is the key to healthy politics, how does one respond when compromise descends into complicity? To preserve a sense of our personal moral accountability we must each define boundaries. For those boundaries to have meaning we must have the courage to protect them, even when the cost is high.

Almost thirty years ago as a teenager in Texas, I attended my first county Republican convention. As a college student I met a young Rick Perry, fresh from his conversion to the GOP, as he was launching his first campaign for statewide office. Through Associated Republicans of Texas I contributed and volunteered for business-friendly Republican state and local candidates.

Here in DuPage County I’ve been a precinct committeeman since 2006. Door to door I’ve canvased my precinct in support of our candidates. Trudging through snow, using a drill to break the frozen ground, I posted signs for candidates on whom I pinned my hopes for better government. Among Illinois Republicans I found an organization that seemed to embody my hopes for the party nationally. Pragmatic, sensible, and focused on solid government, it seemed like a GOP Jurassic Park, where the sensible, reliable Republicans of old still roamed the landscape.

At the national level, the delusions necessary to sustain our Cold War coalition were becoming dangerous long before Donald Trump arrived. From tax policy to climate change, we have found ourselves less at odds with philosophical rivals than with the fundamentals of math, science and objective reality.

The Iraq War, the financial meltdown, the utter failure of supply-side theory, climate denial, and our strange pursuit of theocratic legislation have all been troubling. Yet it seemed that America’s party of commerce, trade, and pragmatism might still have time to sober up. Remaining engaged in the party implied a contribution to that renaissance, an investment in hope. Donald Trump has put an end to that hope.

From his fairy-tale wall to his schoolyard bullying and his flirtation with violent racists, Donald Trump offers America a singular narrative – a tale of cowards. Fearful people, convinced of our inadequacy, trembling before a world alight with imaginary threats, crave a demagogue. Neither party has ever elevated to this level a more toxic figure, one that calls forth the darkest elements of our national character.

With three decades invested in the Republican Party, there is a powerful temptation to shrug and soldier on. Despite the bold rhetoric, we all know Trump will lose. Why throw away a great personal investment over one bad nominee? Trump is not merely a poor candidate, but an indictment of our character. Preserving a party is not a morally defensible goal if that party has lost its legitimacy.

Watching Ronald Reagan as a boy, I recall how bold it was for him to declare ‘morning again’ in America. In a country menaced by Communism and burdened by a struggling economy, the audacity of Reagan’s optimism inspired a generation.

Fast-forward to our present leadership and the nature of our dilemma is clear. I watched Paul Ryan speak at Donald Trump’s convention the way a young child watches his father march off to prison. Thousands of Republican figures that loathe Donald Trump, understand the danger he represents, and privately hope he loses, are publicly declaring their support for him. In Illinois our local and state GOP organizations, faced with a choice, have decided on complicity.

Our leaders’ compromise preserves their personal capital at our collective cost. Their refusal to dissent robs all Republicans of moral cover. Evasion and cowardice has prevailed over conscience. We are now, and shall indefinitely remain, the Party of Donald Trump.

I will not contribute my name, my work, or my character to an utterly indefensible cause. No sensible adult demands moral purity from a political party, but conscience is meaningless without constraints. A party willing to lend its collective capital to Donald Trump has entered a compromise beyond any credible threshold of legitimacy. There is no redemption in being one of the “good Nazis.”

I hereby resign my position as a York Township Republican committeeman. My thirty-year tenure as a Republican is over.


Chris Ladd

Postscript – Needless to say, the response to the letter has been stunning and overwhelming. I want to express my gratitude to the people who have shared so many kind thoughts. It was my intention to reply to each of the emails I’ve received, but I was snowed under by late last night and they keep piling up.

Some of the warmest regards have come from right here in suburban Chicago. When I posted this letter I was prepared to face some anger here at home from fellow Republicans. Nothing of the kind has materialized. The only official response from the local GOP so far has been support, for which I am immensely grateful. It gives me hope. We may all come out of this debacle in better condition.