Director of Budgeting        
NC-Wilmington, Definition: To perform a variety of professional level duties and responsibilities involved in performing complex statistical analysis, developing budgets and fiscal reporting systems, and to perform various related activities in support of the financial planning function. Exercises general supervision over staff in the payroll operations and budget areas. Minimum Required Education/Training/Exper
          FINANCIAL OFFICER        
PA-Philadelphia, The Federal Community Defender Office Eastern District of Pennsylvania is seeking to fill the newly created position of Financial Officer. The person appointed to fill this position will be responsible for all aspects of financial management and analysis, accounting systems and controls, budget development, projections, and day-to-day financial operations. The Financial Officer will oversee human
          Associate - Legal        
MA-Boston, Overview: Are you passionate about criminal justice reform? Are you interested in working in a fast-paced environment with a tenacious group of big-thinking, results-focused, talented colleagues? Are you looking for a job where you can have real, system-level impact? The Crime and Justice Institute (CJI) at Community Resources for Justice (CRJ) is seeking a high-performing individual with strong p
          Comment on Infusing Value in Supply – SELRS Update by Angie Dedrick        
Wow, fantastic work! Bravo to the SELRS Facilitators, Guiding Group and the GFSA Animators for bringing some clarity to our very confusing and frustrating food system. It gives me great hope to see this work!
          Comment on Digesting the Global Food System – SELRS update by John Zylstra        
The production and consumption of food is indeed a complicated diagram. I just read a story about 17 kindergarten children dying in a minibus accident in china. The article said they had 64 people in a nine passenger bus. So safety took a back seat. As safety increases, cost increases, and ghg emissions also increase, since they will need seven buses instead of one. To some extent this also applies to food production.? As we increase safety and capacity, will our costs and ghg emissions increase? Can local food including backyards guarantee a certain supply? or will it always need a surplus backup system? And how does this backup system remain viable?
          Mayo in Florida pulls out of Waycross hospital        
WAYCROSS, Ga. — Mayo Clinic in Florida will end an agreement with Satilla Health Services and return governance of the Waycross hospital to local control, Mayo announced Friday. Under an agreement signed in March 2012, Mayo Clinic Health System in Waycross was created to operate the 231-bed hospital and related businesses. The decision to end its […]
          School board’s sweetheart deal with outside trash company costs taxpayers $4 million        
SAVANNAH, Ga. — Earlier this year, the superintendent of Savannah-Chatham County Public School System along with the elected school board asked for and received a property tax increase adding millions of dollars to the operations of a system that can really use the help.  So, as the tax payer who allows that board to have and to spend, […]
          BPCL awards its prestigious microsites design & implementation contract to Octaware Technologies        
by Shrutee K/DNS

Mumbai, August 10, 2017: Octaware Technologies Limited (BSE – 540416), a leading software and business solutions development company, is pleased to announce that they have been awarded the prestigious contract from BPCL for the design and implementation of their loyalty and brand microsites. Octaware was one of the bidders and was awarded the contract, post evaluation and presentation of efficient solutions and capabilities to the evaluation committee.

The scope of work under the contract includes design and implementation of microsites for BPCL’s loyalty programs – SmartFleet & PetroBonus and other brands - Speed and In & Out. The engagement includes a period of 3 months for implementation of microsites and an additional three years of support and maintenance. Octaware Technology Limited’s expertise in the areas of online portals & enterprise systems helped them win the contract.

Commenting on the development, Mr. Aslam Khan, Chief Executive Officer, Octaware Technologies Limited, said, “We are extremely delighted to have won the prestigious contract from BPCL, our first major win in the Indian PSU sector, post our IPO in April 2017. The fact that it falls under one of Octaware’s key focus verticals of governance, demonstrates our consistent and steady inroads in the Indian market, surpassing some of the strong players in the region. We look forward to a long-term business association with BPCL”.

About Octaware Technologies Limited:
Incorporated in 2005, Octaware Technologies Ltd is a software development company providing a range of information technology solutions. The company designs, develops, and maintains software systems and solutions. Company's services include custom software development, ECM/portal solution, ERP and CRM implementation, mobile platform solution, RFID solution, cloud and IT infrastructure services, consulting services and geospatial services.
Octaware provides specialized software application and product development services and solutions in the areas of healthcare, finance, and e-government industry. The company has proprietary products for domestic, as well as international markets, such as PowerERM – Human Capital Relationship Management, Hospice – Healthcare and Citizen Services solution, and iOnAsset – Inventory management and tracking System etc. These products are available as packaged products as well as software-as-a-service model integrated with legacy system.
Octaware Technologies Limited (BSE – 540416), got listed on the BSE –SME platform on April 3, 2017 and was oversubscribed by 148%, providing testimony to the faith, the investors have reposed in the company.

          Hospitals and local physicians are noticing a spike in the no of respiratory cases in the city        
by Shrutee K/DNS

Mumbai, August 10th, 2017: The rains have arrived and so is the number of diseases along with it. People are aware of the most common ailments such as viral fever, the common cold, malaria, typhoid, diarrhoea, etc. But very few are aware of the respiratory ailments that stems from indoor air pollution in monsoon caused by the dampness in the walls, fungus from air conditioners, floor carpets, velvet upholsteries, sofa covers, wooden furniture harboring fungus, etc. The Hospitals and local physicians in the city have noticed a spike in the no. of cases with respiratory problems. Suspended Particulate Matter is the main trigger of damage in air Pollution. Other contents like SO2, ammonia, carbon, polyaromatic hydrocarbons add to the toxicity. Air pollutants which are less than 10 microns in size enter the smaller airways and causes damage. This may trigger cough, breathing difficulty, choking, chest tightness and Asthma.

Taking adequate precautions are one of the best ways to avoid monsoon-related ailments. All age groups are affected because of air pollution; however, there is a definite rise in asthma and lung infections among children. Also, elderly and diabetics are at a risk of lung infection because of air pollution. Avoiding floor carpets, velvet upholsteries, stuffed toys, burning incense sticks at home and regular cleaning of air conditioner filters are some of the precautions that can be taken to avoid indoor air pollution during the monsoon.

Mr. Girish Bapat, Blueair air purifier, Director West and South Asia Region further added, “Our mission at Blueair is to help Indian women, children and men confront the health challenges posed by rising air pollution. It is very essential to identify the Invisible dangers. Breathing in tiny, unseen pollutants put every individual at risk. These pollutants further pass through the lung tissue and puts you at risk of stroke, heart disease and developing Asthma, Allergy, Bronchitis, Infection and other respiratory problems. Getting acquainted of personal health records, heart rate and blood sugar level, is the best way to safeguard long-term health issues by classifying troublesome concerns at the earliest.”

Blueair’s air purifiers are innovated in Sweden to put people in control of their own air quality with superior filtration efficiency. Sold in over 60 countries around the world, Blueair delivers home and office users cleaner indoor air for enhanced user health and wellbeing faster than any competing air purifier thanks to its commitment to quality, energy efficiency and environmental care. A Blueair air purifier works efficiently and silently to remove airborne allergens, asthma triggers, viruses, bacteria and other pollutants.

          Ziox Mobiles announces Sushant Singh Rajput as its Brand Ambassador along with Rs. 300cr investment for FY17 - 18        
Launches its newest Mobile phone ‘Ziox Duopix’
        Forays into LED TV and Consumer Durables Segment
        Plans to open 2 new manufacturing units and R&D facilities with investment of Rs. 200cr.
        Plans a 360-degree marketing campaign with a budget of
Rs. 100 Cr.
by Shrutee K/DNS
In the light of its vigorous expansion, Ziox Mobiles under the aegis of Sun Air voice Pvt Ltd, one of the fastest growing Mobile handsets brand, ropes in the very versatile, Sushant Singh Rajput, as its Brand endorser who truly lives up to the brand name.  While Ziox mobiles is a preferred brand across the country through its outstanding innovation and quality, the other has won the hearts of a million Indians as he slips into any role with nonchalance. Both the brand and its ambassador ride on the precepts of resilience, hard work and steady growth. A rare blend of energy, perseverance, and popularity coupled with his ability to connect to people, Sushant Singh Rajput is a fine addition to the Ziox Mobiles family. This association will further boost the legacy of Ziox Mobiles as the actor resonates to the brand promise: Quality that Speaks.
Answering strong demand and an overwhelming response from the Indian market, Ziox Mobiles also chalked out a detailed expansion plan and the roadmap for FY 2017-2018.The Brand aims to establish a stronger foothold in the Indian Market, with the total investment of over Rs. 200crore which shall span for a year, the Brand announced its plan to set up 2 new manufacturing units (in Sikkim and Noida) and R&D facilities apart from the existing New Delhi unit, with a holding capacity of around 1 Million units per Month. With the induction of Sushant Singh Rajput as its brand endorser along with the total investment of Rs. 100 Cr. this FY 2017-2018, Ziox aims to achieve an estimated revenue of Rs. 1,000 Cr and a sale of 10 million product units.
Commenting on this association and a promising future, Mr. Deepak Kabu, CEO Ziox Mobiles said “The future looks bright, Ziox Mobiles has a range of phones in the pipeline with exciting new launches. We are enthralled to present Sushant Singh Rajput as the new face of Ziox Mobiles. With Sushant Singh Rajput on board, it will help augment sales and further its reach in the market. The partnership with him is timed with Ziox Mobiles’ next phase of expansion on a pan-India level” Mr. Kabu further adds, “Sushant embodies talent, youthfulness and style. More importantly, he blends well with the core values of hard work, reliability, and is the epitome of our brand philosophy. Today our target audience is the young, driven, forward-moving generation, who have ever changing needs. Sushant understands the pulse of this audience well and has a great rapport with them. That is why, with immense preparation, he goes on to entertain his fans with one performance after another just as Ziox Mobiles constantly strives to understand the changing needs of its customers.”
Speaking on the association, Sushant Singh Rajput said, "I have always known Ziox Mobiles to be an inspirational brand in terms of their persuasion to becomes India’s biggest mobile brand. I am happy to be associated with a brand which is very young, and has a journey that is very similar to mine. I love how this brand designs its products to suit every need of its customers and are constantly innovating themselves as I see myself doing that while working on a role. I look forward to being part of the Ziox Mobiles family and to contribute to its fascinating growth journey in India." The ever-evolving brand has slated a major strategic transformation that entails the signing of a new brand endorser, an aggressive expansion and launches of it new products. The Brand at the event also announced the launch of its newest smartphone Series ‘Duopix”, Phone Series with Dual Cameras. Designed to fulfil the brand promise of providing users with superior camera performance and quality, ‘Duopix’ comes equipped with wide angle Dual front camera (8.0MP + 2.0) front +8.0MP Rear. The latest Dual 4G model runs on Android 7.0, with 5inch HD IPS Display along with 2GB RAM + 16GB ROM all packed in 2500mAh battery. Some of the key features includes strong battery life & also the fast charging capability. The budget friendly Smartphone comes equipped with various other features like 21 language support with multilingual phonebook, MP3 player, FM Radio, Bluetooth connectivity to help you stay connected. The phone will be available across all retail stores in few week’s time. Along with the smartphones, the brand also announces its foray into LED TVS and Consumer Durables category.

About Ziox Mobile: Ziox Mobiles, part of Sun Airvoice Pvt. Ltd., incepted in the Year 2015, with a singular motto to break the boundaries while offering technologically superior products without compromising on quality. Headquartered in New Delhi, Ziox Mobiles has built up an impressive product portfolio of more than 40 distinguished products and constantly innovating to make superior products.
Empowering consumers with affordable technology through quality products- the brand has truly demonstrated quick and robust expansion since inception, showing profitability and growing sales since the first year of operations. Being considered as one of the most innovative and fastest growing brands in the Mobile category, the brand has established its presence across India through its wide network comprising of its various branch offices and system integrators across several states in India.

          The Bombay Canteen 3rd Independence Dawaat In Support of Miracle Foundation India         


by Shrutee K/DNS

Mumbai August 2017: This Independence Day, let’s celebrate the joy of being Indian. And what better way than The Bombay Canteen3rdAnnual Independence Day Dawaatto raise a toast to our amazing culinary heritage with an unforgettable meal for a cause. A feast of regional Indian specialties at our annual Independence Dawaat on August 15, 2017, only for lunch from 12 noon to 3:30 pm and this year’s fundraiser is in support of Miracle Foundation India.  The Miracle Foundation India is a non-profit organization that brings life-changing care to orphaned children and helps them thrive in real time with a measurable, repeatable and systematic method to ensure that orphans are educated, fed, loved and safe. So block your calendar and make a plan with friends to celebrate all things Indian with a feast from around the country for a very noble cause. And since this lunch is also about celebrating freedom, we encourage you to pay what you like at the end of your meal. Remember, everything you donate, goes to the Miracle Foundation India for the incredible work they do to take care of orphaned children.

On the menu this year – a sumptuous meal of regional delicacies all served on a banana leaf in a community style dining experience. Its India on a platter with Chef Thomas Zacharias and his team putting together this feast inspired by dishes from across twelve states, including Mangalorean Chicken Curry, Punjabi Smoked Red Pumpkin Bharta, Lucknavi style Soy Kheema Mutter, Kashmiri Simla Mirch & Petha Korma, Kerela Mandeli Fry, seasonal vegetable pulao and much more. All this with a selection of unusual chutneys and accompaniments, served up with chilled Aam Panna from UP and delicious Maharashtrian TilGud Cake and Tiranga Barfi to round off the meal.


Sameer Seth, Founder & CEO, The Bombay Canteen said, "We are really excited to be supporting the Miracle Foundation through our 3rd Independence Day Daawat. The work they do to support orphaned children is inspiring. It has been amazing to learn about how they go about shaping the lives of these kids in a systematic and sustainable manner, and hope that through the Daawat more people learn about their fantastic work."

Caroline Boudreaux, Founder of Miracle Foundation said, “We are thrilled to be a part of the Independence Day Dawaat at the Bombay Canteen. The support we receive at this event will give children without parents all they need to thrive: Delicious and nutritious food, education, clean water, healthcare, safety and love. In partnership with the Bombay Canteen, we are empowering children to reach their full potential and become independent adults—as the country celebrates its independence.”

Get your flags out, paint the city in tricolour, and swing by to celebrate all things Indian this Independence Day, with good food for a good cause! 

Date: On August 15th, Tuesday 2017.
Independence Dawaat at Lunch only from 11.30am to 3:30pm.
First come, First Serve
You can also donate on: https://www.ketto.org/fundraiser/tbc


About Our Cause: Miracle Foundation India is a non-profit organization that brings life-changing care to the world of children without parental care in India. Our mission is simple. Miracle Foundation India stands for children without parental care and helps them thrive in real time. We've created a measurable, repeatable and systematic method to ensure that children without parental care are educated, fed, loved and safe. At the same time, we explore every avenue to reunite them with their parents or relatives, when possible. Our method: 

Ensures organizations meet the 12 Rights of the Child and rise to international standards

Guides leaders to resettle children with a caring, responsible relative or family—and help them stay together

Transitions orphanages into Centers for Excellence where children thrive instead of reside

Started in 2011, the organization is dedicated to empowering children without parental care to reach their full potential. Today, we support thousands of children without parents, from the hinterlands of Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Telangana, Kerala and Madhya Pradesh to the far-flung areas of Tripura.

Our goal is for every child to live in a loving family; to become a healthy, happy, income-producing person—and experience a true sense of belonging.


          Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC) partners with Mumbai Dabbawala Association (MDA)        

Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC) partners with Mumbai Dabbawala Association (MDA)

~A culturally enriching and riveting morning hosted by Malaysian Palm Oil Council with the Dabbawalas of Mumbai~

by Shrutee K/DNS

Mumbai, August 8, 2017 : In April 2017 in conjunction with the visit to India of the Hon. Prime Minister of Malaysia, Dato Sri’ Haji Mohammad Najib bin Tun Haji Abdul Razak, Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC) signed a MoU with Mumbai Dabbawala Association (MDA). Taking this MoU forward, on the morning of August 8th, MPOC and Mumbai Dabbawalas flagged off an event to create awareness for Malaysian Palm Oil and its benefits.

The event took place at the Lower Parel Bridge, where Dabbawalas wore the T-shirts and topis branded with MPOC message. They then delivered the dabbas carrying a booklet of recipes of dishes that can be cooked in palm oil and the benefits of using palm oil. The Dabbawalas are in a unique position to promote MPOC and raise awareness to the positive nutritional attributes of Malaysian Palm Oil. This becomes particularly useful in Indian cuisine as most dishes are cooked in oil. Substituting for a healthier oil can do no harm, besides besides providing the added bonus of eating delicious food cooked in a healthy oil that is nutritious for the body.

To kick off this event, Dr. Kalyana Sundaram, CEO of MPOC, was present, encouraging the use of palm oil and showing appreciation to our Dabbawalas for their exceptional work. The morning was most enjoyable, entertaining and culturally riveting as some of Maharashtra’s best dancers performed the traditional Lezim Dance, a true delight to have watched! For those unaware of the Lezim Dance, it is a Maharashtrian folk dance performed to the beat of the Dholki, a percussion instrument.

Speaking at the occasion, Dr. Kalyan Sundaram, CEO, MPOC, said, “It gives me immense pleasure to be here this morning. Dabbawalas have been an integral part of this city and they define what Indians stand for: hardworking, responsible and efficient. They work relentlessly with a smile on their face, be it rain or storm. Malaysian Palm Oil has been a very important part of the Indian diet and with this unique initiative we wish to create awareness for this wonderful oil and its several health benefits. Our association with the Mumbai Dabbawalas allows us to spread the message of healthy cooking to a large number of households and encourages a healthier cooking lifestyle”


Mr. Subhash Talekar, Association Spokesperson of Mumbai Dabbawala Association said “We Dabbawalas unfailingly deliver thousands of dabbas to hungry people daily, they are undoubtedly the best people to directly reach out to households and create awareness about palm oil and the health benefits of using it. This is a very exciting new chapter, and we are glad to be partnering with MPOC.”

India is the world’s largest importer of cooking oils. Palm oil constitutes about two-thirds of India’s steadily increasing vegetable oil import. The price, in comparison to competing oils and the proximity of origin, Malaysia, has made Malayisan Palm Oil a highly preferred oil. Now the Dabawallas have taken it upon themselves, with the help of MPOC, to inform families about the benefits of palm oil and how exquisite food can be cooked in palm oil in alternative to other vegetable oils.

Amongst some of the benefits we came to learn about during the event was that palm oil is rich in natural chemical compounds essential for health and nutrition. It has a rich source of carotenoids that are rich in Vitamin A, a potent natural antioxidant, Vitamins D, E, K, fatty acids, and other important fat-soluble micronutrients that boost the human immune system. The health benefits from using palm oil are tremendous - it reduces chances of Cancer, protects against heart diseases, type 2 diabetes, and helps children with Vitamin A deficiency.

The oil is great for cooking; it is of vegetable origin, making it free of cholesterol and apt for vegetarians, vegans, and Jains. Furthermore, the oil has a neutral flavor - you needn’t worry about changing tastes, it does not oxidize easily – making it perfect for frying food, and produces less gummy materials and helps in the cooking area maintaining a non-greasy surface; so, most bakers prefer to use a palm-based margarine for baking goods.

With people now more conscious about their health and food habits, palm oil is definitely the healthier choice to make whilst cooking and a step towards healthier bodies and practices.  What better way to create awareness than directly reaching out to the households through our Dabbawalas.


Note to Editors:
MPOC is a Council under the Ministry of Plantation Industries and Commodities of Malaysia.  Its role is to promote the market expansion of Malaysian palm oil and its products by enhancing the image of palm oil and creating better acceptance of palm oil through awareness of various technological and economic advantages (techno-economic advantages) and environmental sustainability.

The Council has set up a network of ten offices all over the world, mainly in China (Shanghai), India (Mumbai), Pakistan (Lahore), Bangladesh (Dhaka), Middle East (Istanbul and Cairo), Europe (Brussels and Russia), Africa (Durban) and Americas (Washington DC)  to support, promote and venture into new areas for the industry.
                                                                                                             

The plantation industry, particularly palm oil, is one of the main pillars of the Malaysian economy.  The palm oil sector has contributed significantly towards providing a continuous inflow of export earnings through the export of raw commodity and valued-added products to the global market. In 2016, palm oil contributed USD 9 billion in export earnings for Malaysia and accounted for 33% of the world’s palm oil production and 39% of total palm oil exports.

          Skillsoft and MIT Sloan Management Review Partner To Train Next Generation Business Leaders        

Superior content and Percipio platform help organizations develop the next wave of leaders

 by Shrutee K/DNS

Mumbai August 08, 2017–Skillsoft, the global leader in corporate learning, has partnered with MIT Sloan Management Review (MIT SMR) to curate the journal’s best leadership assets and deliver them to its 40 million users. This key collaboration kicks off a series of new, innovative content partnerships that will empower Skillsoft’s Leadership and Business Skills learners with professional training from the industry’s top experts.

Organizations and their employees can now access this elite catalog of content to enhance professional development, upskill their workforce, and hone individual career paths. Presented through the highly engaging and intuitive Percipio platform, users will be able to access everything from MIT SMR’s general leadership articles, to Frontier articles that focus on the intersection of business management practice with technology, collaborative research reports, as well as webinars and videos. Content will be optimized for all devices and operating systems, and will be accessible via video, audio and written content for varied learner styles and needs.

“Our Leadership content sets us apart from other corporate learning content providers. We provide the most diverse content catalog with an array of learning modalities. More importantly and unique to Skillsoft, we craft thoughtful learning paths and courses for users to follow,” said Bill Donoghue, Executive Chairman of the Skillsoft group. “Our partnership with MIT Sloan Management Review will supplement our own assets and underscore our commitment to building the most respected and up-to-date portfolio of Leadership training available.”

Skillsoft will embed MIT SMR content within its core Business and video collections, and integrate content within its existing Leadership offerings, like Skillsoft Leadership Advantage, Continuous Leadership Journey and Women-in-Action. The partnership between Skillsoft and MIT SMR will provide organizations with engaging, on-demand corporate learning content that will groom, train and inspire management teams through a consumer-like interface (think Netflix or Amazon) that is designed to engage the learner.

“We see a growing need for effective leadership training to address critical skill gaps in today’s organizations and help increase an organization’s ability to develop talent from within,” said Paul Michelman at MIT SMR. “This partnership gives our content a new vehicle for delivery within those organizations that believe training their internal talent is paramount to creating a competitive edge.”

MIT Sloan Management Review is a pre-eminent platform and content leader that bridges the gap between academic research and daily practice. The Review keeps readers in tune with management trends and innovations. MIT SMR articles cover a wide range of topics relevant to management with a focus on areas such as Data & Analytics, Digital, Global, Innovation, Leadership, Marketing, Operations, Social Business, Strategies and Sustainability. For decades, MIT SMR has been a forum for business-management innovators from around the world to present their ideas and research.

About Skillsoft : Skillsoft is the global leader in corporate learning, providing the most engaging learner experience and high-quality content. We are trusted by the world's leading organizations, including 65 percent of the Fortune 500. Our mission is to build beautiful technology and engaging content that drives business impact for today’s modern enterprise. Our 150,000+ multi-modal courses, videos, books and micro-learning modules are accessed more than 130 million times every month, in 160 countries and 29 languages. With 100% secure cloud access, from any device, whenever, wherever. www.skillsoft.com

          Ducati launches Scrambler Café Racer in India at INR 9,32,000         


by Shrutee K/DNS

New Delhi : Ducati India announced the launch of the Scrambler Café Racer at INR 9,32,000 (Ex-showroom, India). The motorcycle is powered by the air and oil-cooled EURO 4-compliant 803 cc twin-cylinder engine. The Desmodue engine delivers 73 hp at 8,250 rpm* and a torque of 67 Nm at 5,750 rpm* and comes with blacktrimmed covers and machined cooling fins.   Sergi Canovas Garriga, Managing Director of Ducati India said, “This motorcycle is a modern interpretation of the legendary Café Racer scene from the 1960s that triggered a motorcycling revolution. It represents the expression of free spirit and is an icon of style for enthusiasts. We’re very confident that with the Ducati Scrambler Café Racer, we will successfully bring the global cultural phenomenon to India as well.”

The bike combines the best of the two worlds – the design language of the Scrambler brand and a sporty riding position. This version features rear-view mirror mounted aluminium clip-on handlebars, Termignoni exhaust with dual tailpipes, black anodized aluminium cover and a dedicated seat featuring a cover for the passenger section. 
This version has cast aluminium 17” wheels with Pirelli DIABLO™ ROSSO II tyres (120/70 ZR 17 at the front and 180/55 ZR17 at the rear). The Ducati Scrambler Café Racer mounts a Brembo braking system featuring Bosch 9.1 MP ABS with a pressure sensor. The Ducati Scrambler Café Racer also features a radial-type front brake pump ensuring true sport bike braking performance.

The Scrambler Café Racer has a dedicated line of accessories and apparel. The Ducati Scrambler Café Racer is now available in a Black Coffee colour with black frame and gold wheels across all Ducati dealerships in Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Bangalore, Pune, Ahmedabad & Kochi. 
  
Ducati Scrambler 
Ducati’s new Scrambler brand re-interprets the values of the Ducati Scrambler, the iconic twowheeler developed in the 1970s in the USA, which quickly became a worldwide success. Anticonformist, accessible and essential, the Ducati Scrambler is a perfect mix of tradition and modernity, a step towards the pure essence of motorcycling: two wheels, wide handlebars, a straightforward engine and endless fun. And, to meet everyone's individual “self-expression” needs the Ducati Scrambler comes in several different versions like the Icon, Classic and Full Throttle. This year two more versions join the Land of Joy: The Scrambler Desert Sled, a version that draws its inspiration from the off-road bikes that, back in the '60s and '70s, made US motorcycling history, and the Café Racer, the Scrambler interpretation of the legendary '60s bikes that triggered a motorcycling revolution

          How healthcare systems can reduce financial risk with developer-owned hospitals        
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          MANHATTAN NOVITA’ 2017 BY HENRY GLASS        

Manhattan è il sistema di porte scorrevoli intelaiate in vetro Henry glass, realizzate interamente su misura. L’estetica pulita e lineare è resa personale dall’infinità di combinazioni possibili per vetri, decori e personalizzazioni. La scelta progettuale di Henry glass è utilizzare vetro con spessore 10 mm,...

L'articolo MANHATTAN NOVITA’ 2017 BY HENRY GLASS proviene da Ruaro Sas.


          Tifiamo Scaramouche!        
Tifiamo Scaramouche è una raccolta di racconti in quattro volumi che possono essere scaricati liberamente in formato PDF dal sito dei Wu Ming. Si tratta di una fan fiction derivante da L'armata dei sonnambuli, l'ultimo romanzo storico del collettivo uscito nel 2014.

A curare la raccolta è stato Simone Scaffidi L. Da un'idea di: Pietro Pace, Mauro Vanetti e Alessandro Villari (Avvocato Laser). Il progetto grafico e l'impaginazione si devono a Franco Berteni (Mr Mill) e Simone Scaffidi L. La copertina e le illustrazioni sono di Alessandro Caligaris e Francesca Sibona.

Qui di seguito, ecco il mio contributo, pubblicato nel terzo volume della raccolta. Buona lettura.


Il flauto tradito
Parigi, 1801

1.

A suo modo, Ludwig Wenzel Lachnith era un uomo generoso. La sera del 20 agosto 1801, dopo la trionfale prima della sua opera I misteri d'Iside al Teatro della Repubblica, il compositore offrì la cena all'intera troupe, comparse e suggeritore compresi.
Benché relegate al tavolo meno prestigioso dell'ampia sala del ristorante, le due comparse Léo Modonnet e Emanuele Gizzio potevano udire facilmente i discorsi del tavolo principale, quello dove sedeva Lachnith assieme al manager del teatro, al librettista Étienne Morel de Chédeville e ai cantanti protagonisti. Per meglio dire, potevano udire il monologo del torrenziale musicista boemo, la cui voce sopravanzava quelle di tutti gli altri.
«Eh sì, caro Chédeville! Il buon Mozart aveva del talento, questo nessuno lo vorrà negare; ma aveva anche un'esecrabile tendenza al lambiccato, all'insolito... In una parola: troppa complicazione! Oggigiorno il pubblico non ne vuole sapere di una musica che sia troppo difficile. La gente vuole ariette semplici, presentate con garbo, che tocchino il cuore senza affaticare il cervello. Prendete il Don Giovanni: quante graziose melodie! Parola mia, credo che abbiamo fatto bene a prenderne una in prestito, per il nostro terzetto. Tuttavia, andiamo... La scena con la statua nel finale secondo... Chi può sopportare una tale rombante cacofonia? Pensate solo questo: in quattro battute, quel povero basso deve cantare tutte e dodici le note della scala cromatica. Sapete? Un mio amico italiano, galantuomo e compositore eminente, mi parlava tempo fa con orrore di un certo quartetto per archi, dove Mozart ha accumulato tante di quelle dissonanze da creare un ripugnante caos, direi quasi un giacobinismo sonoro, dove va completamente perso ogni giusto criterio di gerarchia tra le sette note... Di proposito dico sette, non dodici; giacché nessuno, a meno che il suo orecchio non sia guastato dalla musica per tastiera, crederà mai che un re diesis possa essere uguale a un mi bemolle... Anzi: un re è sempre un re, come dicono in Italia, non è vero?».
«Ma va' curcati, buffuni!» commentò Gizzio a mezza voce.
«Perciò, quando mi fu proposto di allestire per le nostre scene Il Flauto magico, la prima cosa che pensai fu: sta bene; ma, per carità, sfrondiamo! Semplifichiamo!
Smussiamo le asperità del testo! Rendiamo il tutto più comprensibile, più adatto alle orecchie del nostro pubblico. Più elegante, anche. E l'esito così radioso di questa serata ha dimostrato che avevamo avuto pienamente ragione. Prima di tutto: i nomi. Tutti quei Tamino, Papageno e Papagena del testo originale, così goffi e plebei, noi li abbiamo cambiati nei molto più raffinati Isménor, Bochoris e Mona...».
Modonnet rise.
«Non voglio parlare della parte musicale. Ho dovuto lavorare parecchio di forbici e d'ingegno per dare una veste accettabile alla barbarica partitura. Ma, per quanto riguarda il vostro lavoro, Chédeville, potete andare orgoglioso di avere addolcito il carattere di quella terribile regina della notte. Certo, l'aria del secondo atto l'abbiamo dovuta proprio espungere: a parte che è impossibile da cantare, ma quel testo “der hölle Rache kocht in meinem Herzen...”, “vendetta infernale sento nel mio petto”... Ahimè! Una gentile e amabile donzella come voi, signorina Maillard, avrebbe dovuto intonare tali parole? Per carità! Abbiamo già sofferto abbastanza, qualche anno fa, con quella spaventosa Medea di Cherubini. Basta, basta! I personaggi femminili, a teatro, devono rassicurare, non inquietare! Belle fanciulle, mogli e madri esemplari: questo vuole il nostro distinto pubblico. Perché la gente, la sera, vuole distrarsi dai traffici quotidiani del commercio e della Borsa, e trovare sollievo dalle cure dello Stato. Dirò di più: nell'epoca moderna la gente vuole vivere il proprio tempo come un affascinante, mutevole, infinito spettacolo. In una parola, vuole divertirsi. Il nostro compito è di farli divertire. E questa sera ci siamo riusciti; possiamo affermarlo con fierezza. Brindiamo!».

2.

Erano passate le quattro del mattino quando Modonnet e Gizzio ritornavano al foborgo Sant'Antonio. Davanti alle botteghe dei fornai c'erano già le prime code. I volti e i discorsi delle persone in fila per il pane manifestavano stanchezza, frustrazione, rabbia.
«Quattordici soldi per quattro libbre di pane! Così non si può andare avanti».
«Uno schifo, altro che!».
«Bonaparte non sta facendo un cazzo».
«Sbagli, cittadina. Bonaparte sta facendo parecchio. Solo, non per noialtri».
«Per i grandi proprietari. Per i nobili, gli speculatori, i fornitori dell'esercito e i finanzieri. Per quei merdosi, ecco per chi sta lavorando il Primo console...».
Gizzio sembrava ancora più taciturno del solito. Per tutto il cammino dal centro al foborgo, dove lui e Modonnet abitavano, disse a malapena due parole, eccettuate le strane bestemmie che ogni tanto sputava tra i denti.
«Toglimi una curiosità» gli chiese alla fine Modonnet mentre stavano per arrivare a casa. «Al tuo paese è normale invocare con tanta frequenza la ghigliottina su Gesù Cristo, sulla Madonna e su tutti i santi, come fai tu?».
Gizzio rise amaramente: «Lo facciamo di continuo. Tutti, anche i bambini e i preti. Vieni a vivere un mese dalle mie parti, e capirai».
«Non mi ricordo mai come si chiama la tua città».
«Io stesso vorrei non ricordarmene. Comunque, non è una città: è un villaggio di poche anime sperduto nell'Aspromonte. Ammesso che esista ancora. Non ho sue notizie da due anni, cioè da quando sono venuto qui a Parigi».
Era il discorso più lungo che Modonnet gli avesse mai udito fare.
«Ma no» proseguì Gizzio, come parlando fra sé. «Giudico troppo severamente i miei compaesani. In fondo, nessuno di loro si è arruolato nell'Armata cristiana e reale». Gizzio pronunciò queste ultime parole con una smorfia di disgusto.
«Ne ho sentito parlare» commentò Modonnet. «Le bande del cardinale Ruffo, non è vero? Una specie di Vandea...».
«Molto peggio. I vandeani, almeno, sapevano per cosa combattevano; i sanfedisti invece si sono solo fatti affascinare dai feudatari e dai preti. Hanno avuto quello che si meritavano. Li aspettano altri due o tre secoli di dispotismo e di miseria. E ti dico la verità: penso che anche qui, in Francia, andrà a finire allo stesso modo. Te lo concedo: finora il popolo di Parigi si è comportato bene, specialmente i tuoi compagni del foborgo Sant'Antonio. Ma quanto ancora potranno resistere? I contadini francesi non sono affatto
più intelligenti di quelli del Regno di Napoli; nelle campagne già da tempo monta la reazione. Gente che cerca solo un padrone cui obbedire; e in buona parte l'ha già trovato. E allora non chiedermi perché bestemmio, Léo: mi è rimasto solo questo, mannaia lu signuri!».
«Ho sempre apprezzato il tuo ottimismo, cittadino Gizzio!» concluse Modonnet.

3.

Uno dei vantaggi del mestiere teatrale è che permette di dormire sino a tardi; quando si ha un tetto sotto cui ripararsi, naturalmente. Léo Modonnet, per ora, l'aveva; ma quella mattina dormì lo stesso un sonno assai inquieto. Verso mezzogiorno, poco prima di svegliarsi, fece uno dei sogni più enigmatici della sua vita.
Era un sogno musicale. Modonnet udiva con una chiarezza allucinatoria una breve melodia, gentile e saltellante, in uno stile antiquato, suonata da una piccola orchestra. Poi, lo stesso tema, ma eseguito da un'orchestra molto più grande, con accenti molto più imperiosi e con una chiusa cromatica vagamente minacciosa. A questo punto appariva uno strano ometto, che si esprimeva con un forte accento tedesco. «Ogni vero artista, mein Freund, è anche uno Zauberer – un mago –, sì. Può capitargli di prevedere un futuro imprevedibile. Cosa, o chi, aveva in mente Rousseau quando, riferendosi alla Corsica, scriveva: “ho il vago presentimento che un giorno questa piccola isola stupirà l'Europa”? E quel ragazzino di dodici anni, che un giorno nel mio giardino mise in scena il suo Bastien und Bastienne – come poté presentire che un giorno la volontà generale sarebbe stata manipolata e circuita da un tiranno? Eppure, mein Freund, la storia non è mai un copione già scritto, così come una partitura non è mai immodificabile. E quando ci si accorge che la pagina è guasta, rimane sempre una soluzione: strapparla».
Modonnet si svegliò frastornato e con un forte mal di testa. Senza sapere bene perché, la prima cosa che fece fu aprire il suo baule per cercarvi un involto. Dentro c'erano una maschera nera, un mantello e un bastone dal manico lucente.
Quella notte, Ludwig Wenzel Lachnith, davanti al portone di casa sua, mentre frugava un po' alticcio nelle tasche del suo soprabito per cercare la chiave, notò una scritta di colore rosso fosforescente sul muro proprio accanto alla porta:

RACHE

Prima che avesse il tempo di chiedersi cosa stava succedendo, avvertì il brivido freddo di una lama proprio sotto il mento, e udì alle sue spalle una voce altrettanto metallica e tagliente: «Cittadino musicista, vogliate cortesemente condurmi nel vostro studio».
«Come volete, amico mio» diceva Lachnith mentre saliva le scale, tallonato da Scaramouche. «Non c'è bisogno di tutta questa commedia... vi ho riconosciuto, sapete?».
«Merda» pensò Modonnet.
«Eravate con me a cena ieri sera. Ammetto che il ruolo che vi è stato assegnato nell'ultima produzione è al di sotto delle vostre capacità attoriali; ma tenete conto che si tratta di un'opera, e che Voi non sapete cantare. Ho delle conoscenze, e posso farvi ottenere una buona scrittura per la prossima stagione di prosa... però, immagino che vogliate un risarcimento più immediato, e in contanti».
Erano intanto entrati nello studio del compositore.
«Immaginate male» disse Scaramouche. «Voglio solo porre rimedio a uno dei più insensati e odiosi crimini contro il buon gusto e il buon senso che si possano citare nella storia dell'arte musicale. Voglio cancellare la macchia con cui voi avete insudiciato la memoria di un grande musicista. Voglio che mi diate la partitura originale di quello scempio chiamato I misteri d'Iside».
«Eccola». Lachnith sollevò un manoscritto dal ripiano della sua scrivania e lo consegnò a Scaramouche: «Cosa ve ne farete, adesso?».
«Non lo so ancora. La strapperò in mille pezzi e la getterò nella Senna. Oppure ne attaccherò i fogli ai muri di Parigi per denunciare la vostra cialtroneria».
Lachnith rise: «Vedo che siete un idealista. Forse non vi siete accorto che i tempi sono cambiati e che la rivoluzione è finita. Permettetemi di darvi un consiglio: perché non ve ne tornate in Italia? Laggiù c'è ancora da fare per le teste calde come voi. Già che ci siete, portate con voi quel musone del vostro amico, e ditegli che non è colpa nostra se i giacobini napoletani erano degli imbecilli... se avessero dato subito la terra ai contadini, anziché perdere tempo in chiacchiere, le cose sarebbero andate molto diversamente».
«Ce ne ricorderemo per la prossima rivoluzione» disse Scaramouche.

Nota bibliografica

Questo racconto deve molto al primo capitolo del libro di Augusto Illuminati Gli inganni di Sarastro, Einaudi, Torino 1980, che indaga – sia pure con qualche eccessivo schematismo – le relazioni fra la teoria politica di Rousseau, le scoperte di Franz Anton Mesmer, il Bastien und Bastienne – la cui prima rappresentazione si dice abbia avuto luogo nel giardino della casa di Mesmer a Vienna – e Il flauto magico di Mozart.
Hector Berlioz nelle sue Memorie critica con estrema durezza l'adattamento molto libero de Il Flauto Magico realizzato da Lachnith sotto il titolo de Les mystères d'Isis. Il testo originale delle Mémoires di Berlioz (Parigi 1865) è facilmente reperibile in Internet.
Sulle critiche rivolte a Mozart dal musicista suo contemporaneo Giuseppe Sarti si veda il saggio Sarti contro Mozart di Massimo Mila, ora in M. Mila, Mozart. Saggi 1941-1987, Einaudi, Torino 2006, pp. 332-58.
La sorprendente identità fra il tema iniziale dell'ouverture del Bastien und Bastienne e l'inizio della Terza Sinfonia di Beethoven è, secondo Hermann Abert – citato da Wolfgang Hildesheimer nella sua nota biografia mozartiana –, una pura coincidenza. Com'è noto, Beethoven intendeva intitolare la sinfonia a Napoleone Bonaparte; secondo la tradizione, il musicista strappò la dedica quando seppe che Napoleone si era fatto incoronare imperatore.
Il parallelo fra Napoleone Bonaparte e il Sarastro di Mozart/Lachnith si trova in Jean Tulard, Napoleone. Il mito del salvatore, Rusconi, Milano 1980, p. 9. Alle pp. 183-85 dello stesso libro si parla della crisi alimentare in Francia fra la primavera del 1801 e il 1802.
Le idee esposte qui da Lachnith sulla modernità come spettacolo e sulla “gente” che si vuole divertire derivano in realtà dal libro di Alessandro Baricco L'anima di Hegel e le mucche del Wisconsin, Feltrinelli, Milano 2009.


          La Quinta sinfonia di Brahms        
Vogliamo oggi parlare della meno eseguita fra le sinfonie di Brahms: la Sinfonia n. 5 in do maggiore, op. 123.

Questa sinfonia è il "canto del cigno" del grande musicista, che la terminò nel 1898, pochi mesi prima del suo definitivo crollo psichico.

Brahms visse ancora una decina d'anni chiuso nel manicomio di Amburgo, dove, secondo le relazioni cliniche e le testimonianze del personale ospedaliero, condusse una vita vegetativa, completamente immemore, punteggiata da intervalli di coscienza (ma non di lucidità), durante i quali il povero Brahms sosteneva di essere una taverniera; in tale sua immaginaria qualità di ostessa di una bettola di infimo ordine, Brahms interloquiva coi medici e gli infermieri, scambiandoli per avventori del suo locale. Lo si poteva allora udire in tutto il manicomio mentre, con voce stridula, urlava frasi del tipo: "Quante birre al tavolo sei?" - Tale scena penosa, su cui i biografi di Brahms hanno mantenuto, fino a tempi recenti, un imbarazzato silenzio, si ripeteva una o due volte la settimana.

Si direbbe che l'incombente follia abbia proiettato la sua oscura ombra anche sulla ricezione di quest'ultima opera brahmsiana, che già al suo apparire lasciò perplessi ascoltatori e critici, innanzitutto per la sua durata stranamente breve: la sinfonia dura circa venti o venticinque minuti, a seconda delle interpretazioni (diciotto minuti nella lettura di Toscanini, ventisette in quella di Klemperer; un'incisione dal vivo di Celibidache, con l'orchestra sinfonica della RAI di Napoli, arriva ai quaranta minuti, ma solo perché il direttore allunga fino all'inverosimile gli intervalli fra un movimento e l'altro). Decisamente poco per il pubblico dell'epoca, abituato al gigantismo formale.

Un altro motivo di stupore derivò poi dalla strumentazione, che comprende, oltre al solito organico orchestrale, anche una fisarmonica, un mandolino e un sassofono. Inoltre nell'ultimo movimento è introdotta una voce di basso.

Il primo movimento, Allegro amabile, in forma sonata, inizia con il primo tema, esposto dai soli archi. E' una melodia languida, per non dire sensuale, costruita sulle note Do - La - La - Mi bemolle - Do- Si. In tedesco, queste note si scrivono C - A- A- Es - C - H; si tratta perciò di un chiaro riferimento al nome di Clara Schumann, la musicista per la quale, com'è noto, Brahms nutrì a lungo una segreta e infelice passione. Dopo un ponte modulante, si passa al secondo tema, che è costituito, abbastanza sorprendentemente, dalla ben nota canzone goliardica italiana detta "delle osterie". Il tema viene ripetuto varie volte, con un crescendo rossiniano inconsueto in Brahms, passando da una sezione all'altra dell'orchestra, in modo sempre più insistente. Lo sviluppo è costituito da una ingegnosa combinazione contrappuntistica fra il primo tema e le ultime battute del secondo tema (quelle che, nel testo della canzone, corrispondono alle parole "Dammela a me, biondina, dammela a me, biondà"). La ripresa è assai regolare, ed è seguita da una coda in cui Brahms cita la melodia di un'altra canzone goliardica, Gaudeamus igitur, già da lui utilizzata nella sua Ouverture accademica, op. 80.

Il secondo movimento, Andante comodo, è in forma tripartita. Qui, dopo le stravaganze del primo tempo, ritroviamo con piacere il consueto Brahms di tanti suoi andanti sinfonici: nobile, compassato, un tantino soporifero. La parte centrale dell'Andante si distingue per il finissimo dialogo strumentale fra il sassofono e il mandolino, su una melodia che presenta sottili analogie strutturali con il tema dell'Andante del Trio op. 17 di Clara Schumann.

Non si discosta dal sostanziale classicismo dell'Andante il Minuetto con trio che costituisce il terzo movimento della sinfonia: anzi, questo Minuetto è così ostentatamente haydniano, così settecentesco in modo quasi iperrealistico, che nell'ascoltatore inizia a farsi strada il dubbio se Brahms stia facendo sul serio, e se, a questo punto, ci stia ancora con la testa.

Ogni dubbio viene meno con l'inizio del famigerato quarto movimento. Dapprima entra la fisarmonica solista, proponendo un Recitativo strumentale di sedici battute che non si sa veramente come definire. Dopodiché il basso, senza alcun accompagnamento strumentale, intona alcuni frammenti di Saffo, ordinati dallo stesso Brahms in una sequenza, di cui si ricorderà quarant'anni dopo il nostro Quasimodo nella sua traduzione dei lirici greci:

Tramontata è la luna
e le Pleiadi a mezzo della notte;
anche giovinezza già dilegua,
e ora nel mio letto resto sola.
Scuote l'anima mia Eros,
come vento sul monte
che irrompe entro le querce;
e scioglie le membra e le agita,
dolce amara indomabile belva.
Ma a me non ape, non miele;
e soffro e desidero.


E' difficile ascoltare questo recitativo senza provare disagio: il basso, infatti, inizia nel proprio registro centrale, ma poi sale gradualmente, terminando su delle note che si trovano talmente oltre il limite della sua estensione, che finora nessun cantante è riuscito ad intonarle se non in falsetto. Ebbene sì: qui al compositore ha decisamente dato di volta il cervello.

A questo punto entra l'orchestra, attaccando l'Allegretto, in forma di rondò, su cui il basso canta un testo, elaborato dallo stesso Brahms, tratto dal Cantico di Re Salomone. La singolare difficoltà di questa parte vocale, caratterizzata da repentini salti di registro, costituisce certamente uno dei motivi per i quali la Sinfonia n. 5 di Brahms viene eseguita così raramente, ma non è l'unico. Soprattutto è sconcertante la disinvoltura con cui Brahms si appropria di intere sequenze tratte dalla Traviata, dalla Carmen, dal Tristano di Wagner e dalla Manon Lescaut di Puccini, senza neppure sottoporle al lavorìo dell'elaborazione tematica e contrappuntistica di cui è maestro. No, qui Brahms prende interi brani di queste opere e li schiaffa pari pari nel suo rondò, che si trasforma così in una sorta di pot-pourri da operetta.

La Sinfonia n. 5 termina con un altro sberleffo musicale, questa volta affidato alla melodia della canzone napoletana "Oi Marì, oi Marì / quanto suonno aggio perso pe' tte!", eseguita all'unisono dall'intera orchestra e dal basso, per chiudere con un accordo violentemente dissonante che usa tutte e dodici le note della scala cromatica, più alcuni quarti di tono.

Mentre, come si è detto, i contemporanei di Brahms non nascosero l'inquietudine e l'imbarazzo di fronte a questa sinfonia, la critica novecentesca appare molto divisa. Il critico Giorgio Lukács, in una delle sue rare incursioni in ambito musicale, definisce la Quinta Sinfonia di Brahms "uno dei documenti più impressionanti della decadenza artistica e morale della borghesia capitalistica nella sua fase imperialista"; giudizio sostanzialmente riecheggiato da Teodoro Adorno, il quale ebbe a parlare, a proposito di questa sinfonia, di "evidente involuzione reazionaria, basata sulla negazione astorica della funzione sociale della relazione armonica, nella misura in cui il contrappunto, materialisticamente e dialetticamente inteso, cede il passo al costrutto timbrico falsamente progressivo, di carattere apoditticamente neoclassico, orientato a destra, prematurato e antani". La sinfonia fu invece molto lodata da Stravinsky e, ai nostri giorni, da Pierre Boulez, che ne ha dato l'interpretazione forse più vibrante.

Significativa, a suo modo, fu la reazione di Glenn Gould, il quale, durante un'intervista radiofonica col fido Bruno Monsaingeon, da questi interrogato su cosa ne pensasse della Quinta sinfonia di Brahms, per tutta risposta cominciò a ridere, dapprima sommessamente e poi in modo sempre più convulso e irrefrenabile, al punto che l'intervista dovette essere interrotta.

Ma è tempo di passare alla conoscenza diretta di questa composizione così controversa. Ecco il link, con l'avvertenza che, su alcuni browser e con sistemi operativi non aggiornati, la pagina potrebbe anche non aprirsi. Comunque, buon ascolto.

(Già pubblicato su Evulon).
          Su "My Favorite Things" di John Coltrane        
Il 16 novembre 1959 debuttava a Broadway The Sound of Music, di Richard Rodgers e Oscar Hammerstein, uno dei musical più popolari di tutti i tempi anche grazie alla versione cinematografica che ne fu tratta nel 1965 (regia di Robert Wise, protagonista Julie Andrews, la versione italiana porta il titolo Tutti insieme appassionatamente).

Una particolare canzone tratta da questo musical ha avuto fortuna immensa. Di My Favorite Things, infatti, si contano centinaia di cover; l'elenco preparato dai redattori di Radio Rai è lungo sedici pagine.

Qui mi occuperò della versione forse più celebre, quella incisa in studio da John Coltrane il 21 ottobre 1960. Per capire quest'ultima, però, è opportuno partire dalla versione originale di Richard Rodgers. In questo articolo mi avvarrò dell'analisi condotta dal massimo studioso di Coltrane, il musicologo Lewis Porter, nella sua fondamentale monografia (Blue Train. La vita e la musica di John Coltrane, traduzione di Adelaide Cioni, Minimum Fax, Roma 2006, pp. 277-80).

La canzone è musicalmente molto semplice. Si tratta di un valzer in mi minore di quattro strofe, A-A-A'-B. Le prime tre strofe hanno la stessa musica, salvo che nella terza strofa, A', dove ci sono otto battute in maggiore. La quarta strofa, B, usa una diversa melodia e finisce in sol maggiore.

Qui di seguito copio il testo della canzone, di Oscar Hammerstein, cui faccio seguire una traduzione, volutamente molto pedestre, che ho preparato grazie all'ausilio del traduttore automatico di Google:



(A) "Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens
Brown paper packages tied up with strings
These are a few of my favorite things

(A) Cream colored ponies and crisp apple streudels
Doorbells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles
Wild geese that fly with the moon on their wings
These are a few of my favorite things

(A') Girls in white dresses with blue satin sashes
Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes
Silver white winters that melt into springs
These are a few of my favorite things

(B) When the dog bites
When the bee stings
When I'm feeling sad
I simply remember my favorite things
And then I don't feel so bad!"

"Gocce di pioggia su rose e baffi di gattini
Bollitori di rame luminosi e caldi guanti di lana
Pacchetti di carta marrone legati con corde
Queste sono alcune delle mie cose preferite

Pony color crema e croccanti struedel di mele
Campanelli e campanelli da slitta e schnitzel con tagliatelle
Le oche selvatiche che volano con la luna sulle ali
Queste sono alcune delle mie cose preferite

Ragazze in abiti bianchi con sciarpe di raso blu
Fiocchi di neve che rimangono sul mio naso e sulle ciglia
Inverni bianchi d'argento che si sciolgono in primavere
Queste sono alcune delle mie cose preferite

Quando il cane morde
Quando l'ape punge
Quando mi sento triste
Non ho che da ricordarmi delle mie cose preferite
E allora non mi sento così male!"

The Sound of Music è ambientato a Salisburgo, fra le due guerre. Richard Rodgers ha naturalmente cercato di tener conto della tradizione musicale austriaca: My Favorite Things, come detto, è un valzer; negli altri brani si sentono riferimenti allo jodler, al laendler, al canto gregoriano, ecc. In un numero c'è anche un singolare omaggio ad Haydn: la canzone So long, farewell è eseguita da un coro di bambini che, uno alla volta, abbandonano il proscenio, finché a cantare rimane una sola bambina, così come, nel finale della Sinfonia degli addii, tutti gli esecutori smettono uno alla volta di suonare facendo concludere la sinfonia da un solo violinista.

Come ci si potrebbe aspettare, il testo di My Favorite Things fa uso di un immaginario prettamente alpino, o comunque nordeuropeo: bollitori per il té, guanti di lana, slitte che corrono sulla neve... Se di questa canzone volessimo realizzare un video-clip animato, seguendo pedissequamente il testo, dovremmo adoperare in prevalenza le tinte chiare, e in particolare il colore bianco, la cui presenza, in corrispondenza della terza strofa (quella con le otto battute in maggiore), diventa quasi ossessiva: abiti bianchi, fiocchi di neve, inverni bianchi... (Nella versione cinematografica quest'aspetto "eurocentrico" della canzone è ancora più sottolineato dal forte accento british di Julie Andrews).

Molti si sono chiesti cosa potesse avere indotto un artista come John Coltrane, che da lì a poco sarebbe diventato un'icona della cultura afro-americana, a musicare una sua versione di questo brano, il quale inizialmente c'entrava così poco con il jazz.

Secondo Lewis Porter, è un errore "dare per scontato che Coltrane trovasse la canzone sciocca e che per questo volesse abbellirla". Al contrario, Coltrane ammirava sinceramente questa canzone e, nella sua versione, la trattò "con rispetto". Il "messaggio" della canzone, "che le cose buone ci aiutano a superare le cattive", è secondo Porter "del tutto sensato e prezioso - per nulla sciocco - è solo che utilizza esempi alla portata di un bambino, perché nel copione la canzone si rivolge a dei bambini".

Qui però l'ottimo Porter ha preso una cantonata. Nel film, è vero, Julie Andrews canta la canzone a dei bambini. Il film, però, è del 1965, quindi è posteriore all'incisione di John Coltrane, che a quell'epoca poteva conoscere solo la versione teatrale di questo musical; e, nella versione teatrale, la protagonista canta My Favorite Things in una delle scene iniziali, che si svolgono in un convento di suore, e non la canta ai bambini, bensì alla Madre Badessa del convento.

Sembra, in realtà, che Coltrane non fosse attratto tanto dal "messaggio" della canzone, quanto invece dalla sua manipolabilità sul piano strettamente musicale. Ecco come si espresse Coltrane in un'intervista: "Questo valzer è fantastico: se lo suoni lento, senti un elemento di gospel che non è per niente sgradevole; se lo suoni veloce, possiede altre innegabili qualità. E' molto interessante scoprire un terreno che si rinnova a seconda dell'impulso che gli dai".

Quindi, si direbbe che il valzer di Rodgers fosse per Coltrane quello che il valzer di Diabelli era stato per il Beethoven dell'op. 120: poco più che un pretesto, un canovaccio utile per imbastire una serie potenzialmente infinita di variazioni che poco o nulla hanno a che fare con il tema originale. E, in verità, Coltrane eseguì in concerto My Favorite Things moltissime volte (secondo Wikipedia, sono state documentate su nastro non meno di 45 esecuzioni), creandone versioni sempre più lontane dalla canzone originale, fino a renderla irriconoscibile.

La versione sull'album si compone di un'introduzione di quattro battute, suonata due volte; viene poi esposto un vamp (breve inciso ritmico, costantemente ripetuto, che è per il jazz quello che nel rock si chiama riff e nella musica barocca si chiama ostinato), cui fanno seguito un primo assolo di Coltrane, un altro assolo di McCoy Tyner al pianoforte, e un assolo finale ancora di Coltrane, per complessivi 14 minuti circa. Nel primo assolo Coltrane esegue le prime due strofe (A) in minore, poi c'è un interludio in maggiore, poi altre due strofe (A) in minore. Gli altri due assoli seguono lo stesso schema, salvo che per la parte finale dell'assolo conclusivo di Coltrane, di cui dirò fra poco.



La prima cosa che si nota all'ascolto è che Coltrane ha spostato molto lontano dall'Europa il baricentro etnico del brano. La ripetizione ossessiva, ipnotica, di un inciso ritmico in tempo dispari; la voce acuta dello strumento a fiato (un sax soprano, fino ad allora poco usato nel jazz); il clima di fissità tonale e il senso del tempo molto dilatato, sono tutti elementi che richiamano la musica orientale. (A me il brano fa venire in mente una danza sufi). Porter nota che Coltrane era appassionato di musica indiana, era un ammiratore di Ravi Shankar, ed era profondamente interessato alla musica folk e modale di tutto il mondo, nonché alle scale pentatoniche (pare che certe volte, nelle sue esercitazioni, eseguisse col sassofono determinate sequenze del Concerto per orchestra di Béla Bartók). Sempre secondo Porter, in My Favorite Things si possono anche scorgere influenze musicali provenienti dall'Africa occidentale.

La cosa per me più sorprendente è che, nella musica originale di questa canzone, Coltrane abbia sentito un "elemento gospel". Per quanto ascolto e riascolto la canzone di Rodgers e Hammerstein, devo confessare che questo elemento gospel non riesco assolutamente a percepirlo. Ma è significativo che, per Coltrane, la canzone avesse qualcosa a che fare con le radici stesse della musica nera americana. Questo forse ci aiuta a far luce su un'altra singolarità della versione di Coltrane.

Abbiamo detto che la versione coltraniana di My Favorite Things è basata sulla strofa A della musica originale. Che fine ha fatto la strofa B, quella il cui testo contiene, secondo Porter, il "messaggio" della canzone e che si conclude in modo maggiore?

Alla fine del suo assolo conclusivo, Coltrane esegue anche la strofa B, senza apportare particolari variazioni alla musica. Però la esegue in mi minore, dandole, secondo Porter, "un effetto più pensoso, riflessivo".

Il testo originale della strofa B fa riferimento ad api che pungono e a cani che mordono, per delineare scherzosamente una situazione da "giornata storta", in cui le cose, chissà perché, non vanno per il verso giusto. Ma questa situazione si supera (dice la canzone) richiamando alla mente le piccole cose belle della vita. Se si fa in questo modo, l'atteggiamento cambia e ci si accorge che non si sta poi così male. La canzone si chiude così, trionfalmente, in sol maggiore.

Qui, però, è meglio fare ricorso alla bella traduzione ritmica di Antonio Amurri (quella utilizzata nella versione italiana del film), che ha colto al meglio il senso di questa strofa:



"Se son triste, infelice, e non so il perché,
io penso alle cose che amo di più
e torna il seren per me!"

Immaginiamo ora di sentire queste parole sovrapposte al mi minore del sax di John Coltrane, nelle battute finali del suo secondo assolo (a partire dal minuto 12'33''). L'effetto è di un'ironia indefinibile, profonda, pungente, tristemente consapevole. Uno speciale tipo di sarcasmo, composto e controllatissimo, ma inequivocabile.

Per me (e sottolineo: per me) in questo minuto e dodici secondi di musica c'è l'essenza stessa del jazz. Ogni volta che l'ascolto, mi commuovo.

Provo a spiegarmi meglio.

Il cantante e chitarrista Huddie W. Leadbetter (1885-1949), uno fra i musicisti più influenti della musica nera americana del secolo ventesimo, tentò una volta di definire a parole quel particolare complesso psicologico che porta il nome di blues. Possiamo leggere le sue parole come una specie di negativo fotografico della canzone di Rodgers e Hammerstein:

"Quando la notte sei sdraiato nel letto, e ti giri da una parte e dall'altra senza riuscire a prendere sonno, non c'è niente da fare. I blues si sono impadroniti di te... Quando ti svegli al mattino, ti siedi sulla sponda del letto, e puoi avere vicino a te padre e madre, sorella e fratello, il tuo ragazzo o la tua ragazza, ma non hai voglia di parlargli... Non ti hanno fatto niente, e tu non hai fatto niente a loro, ma che cosa importa? I blues si sono impadroniti di te".

Così commenta Arrigo Polillo nel suo classico Jazz. La vicenda e i protagonisti della musica afro-americana (Mondadori, Milano 2009, p. 43): "Avere i blues è qualcosa di diverso dall'essere triste dell'uomo bianco. E' essere afflitti da un tedio esistenziale, da una malinconia greve che non lascia spazio alle fantasticherie, vuol dire autocommiserazione, rassegnazione, vuol dire disperazione sorda, grigiore, miseria. E' una poesia fondata sulle cose di tutti i giorni, su personaggi familiari, visti in una luce realistica, con occhio disincantato. Non c'è, né ci vuol essere, nel blues, trasfigurazione lirica, che è un lusso da bianchi; non c'è dramma, perché il dramma è fatto di ombre ma anche di luci. C'è invece la consapevolezza di una tragedia in atto, che non finirà mai. Il blues singer non canta la vita, ma il non morire, parla sempre di ciò che non ha e che non avrà mai".

Ecco il senso del mi minore con cui si conclude My Favorite Things di John Coltrane. Non c'è consolazione, e non c'è neanche protesta. E' la constatazione oggettiva di una situazione fondamentalmente tragica. Il "messaggio" della canzone di Rodgers e Hammerstein è sovvertito. Vista in questa luce, non solo la canzone, ma la stessa cultura (musicale e non solo) cui essa fa riferimento, viene radicalmente messa in questione.
          Baricco e il postmodernismo da quattro soldi        
Sul "Primo Amore" Antonio Moresco ha pubblicato una bella lettera aperta ad Alessandro Baricco, in risposta a un'intervista concessa da quest'ultimo al "Venerdì di Repubblica".

Baricco, parlando del suo ultimo romanzo, non si limita ad esporre la sua personale poetica di scrittore, ma pretende di far assurgere quest'ultima al livello di teoria generale della letteratura valida per tutti. Moresco rimprovera giustamente a Baricco l'arroganza di tale pretesa.

Baricco non è nuovo a questo genere di smargiassate, così le chiamava il mio professore di filosofia del liceo (si riferiva alle teorie pseudo-storiciste di Francis Fukuyama, ma la definizione è adatta anche a quelle di Baricco). Nel 1992 lo stesso Baricco pubblicò per l'editore Garzanti un testo teorico sulla musica moderna (oggi reperibile in edizione Feltrinelli) dove, con piglio zdanoviano, condannava tutta la musica "atonale" in quanto non adeguata ai gusti della "gente". Nel 2003, qui, pubblicai una recensione di questo libro. La ripropongo ora qui in calce, con minime variazioni. Non mi piace molto com'è scritta, però contiene un'idea che, dopo aver letto il fondamentale libro del collettivo Wu Ming sul New Italian Epic, mi è diventata più chiara: l'idea, cioè, che il "postmodernismo da quattro soldi" sia una delle forme più pervasive e insidiose in cui si presenta oggi l'ideologia dominante. Ecco la recensione.

Alessandro Baricco, L'anima di Hegel e le mucche del Wisconsin. Una riflessione su musica colta e modernità, Garzanti, Milano 1992, pp. 101.

Avvertenza per gli estimatori di Alessandro Baricco: la presente è una stroncatura.

1. Riassunto dei contenuti del libro

Nel primo capitolo, intitolato L'idea di musica colta, Baricco individua l'origine del concetto di musica colta nell'idealismo romantico dell'Ottocento, la cui figura principale, Beethoven, stabilisce il paradigma a cui tutti i successivi compositori, nonché gli interpreti e il pubblico, si attengono: "una musica impegnata, spirituale e difficile" (p. 19). Tale concetto è oggi, secondo Baricco, sopravvissuto a se stesso, dato che ne sono venuti meno i presupposti storici, ideologici e sociali ("qualcuno sa cosa significa spirito?", p. 20). Ma gli esecutori e i fruitori della musica colta si ostinano a riproporre questa concezione ormai superata, e a riproporre i capolavori del passato in forma mummificata e inerte, secondo un malinteso concetto di fedeltà al testo, fondamentalmente perché - sempre secondo Baricco - hanno "paura" della modernità.

Nel secondo capitolo, come alternativa alla prassi corrente, Baricco propone la "sua" idea di interpretazione. La musica "colta" del periodo classico si proponeva di organizzare il caos entro un preciso ordine formale; compito dell'interprete di oggi è, secondo Baricco, di far esplodere tale ordine per far sì che le "schegge" del materiale musicale si possano ricomporre secondo nuove geometrie provvisorie, momentanee, ogni volta diverse, secondo costellazioni di senso sempre rinnovate, piacevoli e sorprendenti.

Il terzo capitolo è dedicato alla musica atonale del Novecento. Baricco parte da un'audace constatazione: ma questa musica, dopo più di settant'anni, ancora non ha un suo pubblico! Gli ascoltatori, per quanto si sforzino, non la apprezzano e non la capiscono! Hanno torto loro? No, naturalmente: hanno invece avuto torto Schoenberg e i suoi successori (tutti quelli che hanno composto musica atonale, vale a dire i tre quarti dei compositori del Novecento da Berg a Webern fino alla scuola di Darmstadt e oltre).

Baricco spiega il perché: esistono "invalicabili limiti fisiologici" (p. 55) che impediscono all'orecchio umano di apprezzare la musica atonale. Infatti ogni brano musicale, continua Baricco, altro non è che un "meccanismo di piacere" (ibid.) basato su un gioco di previsione da parte dell'ascoltatore/risposta da parte della musica: se si cancella la logica tonale, sparisce l'orizzonte della previsione e si elimina il "piacere dell'ascolto" (p. 56).

La musica seriale è ormai superata, e anche qui Baricco non manca di dare la sua spiegazione sociologico-storica: l'atonalità di Schoenberg e seguaci nasce come espressionistico grido di orrore di fronte alla tragica realtà dei massacri e dei totalitarismi del Novecento. Ma nel secondo dopoguerra, "una volta sfumata quella follia" (p. 63) e venuti meno i conflitti ideologici e sociali che caratterizzarono la prima metà del secolo, anche tale giustificazione per l'atonalismo viene a mancare. Perciò non ci sono più motivi validi per i quali i compositori debbano ostinarsi a frustrare "le legittime aspettative del pubblico" (p. 65) continuando a proporre musica così inascoltabile, e perpetuando "lo strappo profondo e grottesco tra quella musica e la gente" (p. 66).

Occorre dunque richiamare i compositori "ai doveri della modernità" (p. 67), "ricreare una sintonia col sentire collettivo. Con una certezza: la modernità è innanzitutto uno spettacolo" (p. 73) e la gente vuole innanzitutto divertirsi, anche nelle sale da concerto: i musicisti devono dunque accettare "l'allegra realtà di un'umanità inconsapevolmente e sanamente drogata" (p. 70), di una modernità dove "la spettacolarità del reale e quella delle forme di rappresentazione si inseguono in un'escalation per la quale anche l'orribile diventa meraviglia" (ibid.).

Nell'ultimo capitolo del suo libro, Baricco propone ai compositori contemporanei due modelli da seguire: Puccini e Mahler. Secondo Baricco, questi due autori avrebbero accettato la concezione moderna di spettacolarità, senza temere di adottare un linguaggio musicale primitivo, né d'infarcire le loro opere di elementi volgari o di cattivo gusto, pur d'intercettare il bisogno di spettacolo dell'ascoltatore odierno, precorrendo così l'estetica del cinema.

2. Critica

Sui primi due capitoli non c'è molto da dire: si tratta di luoghi comuni che Baricco espone come se si trattasse di trovate sue; interpreti come Pierre Boulez (nella sua attività di direttore d'orchestra) e Maurizio Pollini adottano da sempre prassi esecutive antiformalistiche senza bisogno di attendere lezioncine da parte di Alessandro Baricco: di propriamente suo c'è solo un certo superficiale edonismo.

Circa i restanti capitoli del libro, premesso che reputo agghiacciante ognuna delle frasi o espressioni di Baricco che sopra ho citato tra virgolette (reazione molto soggettiva, lo ammetto), la prima osservazione critica da fare su questo testo è che Baricco propone un'estetica normativa, vale a dire un'estetica che pretende di prescrivere agli artisti come devono lavorare (non dovete più scrivere musica atonale, dovete farvi capire dalla "gente", ecc).

Ora, ogni estetica normativa è un'aberrazione, indipendentemente dal suo contenuto. Se poi si vuole valutare quest'ultimo, bisognerà osservare che Baricco si accosta ad Andrej Zdanov, il "teorico" sovietico del realismo socialista: anche lui pretendeva dai compositori una musica dal linguaggio semplice, tradizionale, accessibile alle grandi masse popolari. Zdanov avanzava tale pretesa in nome del superiore interesse del socialismo, Baricco in nome della "modernità" e della fine delle ideologie, ma il risultato non cambia. Baricco, nella sua irritante e dilettantesca superficialità, non sembra neanche rendersi conto del totalitarismo implicito nella pretesa che gli artisti debbano conformare la loro produzione ai gusti della "gente".

D'altra parte neppure si capisce bene quale pubblico Baricco abbia in mente: il pubblico che frequenta le sale da concerto è così esiguo che non vale neanche la pena che i musicisti si affannino per compiacerlo: e peggio per tale pubblico se non riesce ad apprezzare Anton Webern. Viceversa, il pubblico che non ha mai messo piede in un auditorium e non ascolta Schoenberg e Stockhausen, nella sua stragrande maggioranza non ascolta neppure Mahler e Puccini, ed evidentemente non per motivi ascrivibili al solo linguaggio musicale.

In ogni caso, dal fatto che la lettura di questo libro non mi ha impedito neppure per un minuto di continuare ad ascoltare il mio CD con i pezzi per pianoforte di Schoenberg, deduco che quella degli "invalicabili limiti fisiologici" è una colossale sciocchezza, con cui Baricco cerca malamente di giustificare la propria opposizione ideologica alla musica d'avanguardia.

La sua valenza ideologica è in realtà l'unico aspetto un poco interessante di questo libro. Esso, con la sua esaltazione del disimpegno, delle gioie del consumismo e della "gente" che vuole divertirsi, appare come un esempio tipico di quella versione euforico-ebetudinaria del postmoderno che ha furoreggiato nel nostro paese durante tutti gli anni '80: un'epoca nella quale a molti intellettuali non è parso vero di poter finalmente riproporre (nell'aggiornatissimo linguaggio filosofico post-strutturalista) l'antico, tradizionale qualunquismo italiano. Appare tristemente ironico che alcuni di quegli intellettuali si scaglino oggi dalle pagine dell' "Unità" o di "Repubblica" contro le impreviste (ma prevedibili) conseguenze politiche della loro stessa filosofia.

P.S. Ad un certo punto del suo testo, Baricco inserisce alcune oscure insinuazioni a proposito di presunte "coperture politiche" di cui gli artisti dell'avanguardia musicale avrebbero goduto nel nostro paese. Sorge allora la tentazione di leggere questo libro, il cui valore teorico-critico è nullo, in chiave direttamente pratica: forse Baricco si è proposto di approntare un "manifesto" per i musicisti della cosiddetta scuola neo-romantica?

Mi sono allora comprato un disco antologico di un esponente di questa corrente musicale, che ebbe anch'essa un effimero momento di notorietà nel corso degli anni '80: Marco Tutino, Operas, CD Aura Music AUR421-2, 2000, Euro 4,25. Si tratta di composizioni carine, indubbiamente orecchiabili, il cui linguaggio musicale si colloca fra le colonne sonore di Bernard Herrmann e i balletti di Aaron Copland, il tutto realizzato senza troppa fantasia e con circa trent'anni di ritardo.

Bene, ho fatto un piccolo esperimento. Un brano di questo CD di Marco Tutino l'ho fatto ascoltare ad un mio coinquilino che ascolta solo reggae ed hip-hop (e che, così facendo, qualche volta supera gli invalicabili limiti fisiologici delle mie capacità d'ascolto), e poi gli ho fatto sentire qualche minuto di Contrappunto dialettico alla mente di Luigi Nono (1968). Nessuno dei due brani gli è piaciuto, ma ha trovato di gran lunga più interessante quello di Nono.
          Pausa pranzo        
Torno a casa. Metto una pentola d'acqua sul fornello e lo accendo. Poi prendo un dischetto e lo metto nel lettore.

Beethoven, Sonata op. 106 nell'orchestrazione di Felix Weingartner. Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, diretta dallo stesso Weingartner. Incisione storica, del 1930. Riversata su CD, edizione economica.

Che idea bislacca, trascrivere l'Hammerklavier per orchestra. L'opera, così, non funziona. E' incongrua, fuori posto. O forse è l'arrangiamento che non va bene: tutto in legato! Come no: siccome al piano non si può fare e con l'orchestra sì, allora mettiamo il glissando un po' dovunque...

Non importa. L'op. 106 è bellissima anche così. Beethoven è l'unico musicista che riesce a commuovere anche nelle esecuzioni più impossibili, e nelle situazioni d'ascolto più precarie.

Audiocassette in edizioni da autogrill della Quinta o della Sonata al chiaro di luna ascoltate in auto, d'estate, andando verso la spiaggia, coi finestrini aperti e quasi tutta la musica che si perde nel rumore...

C'è qualcosa di disneyano, nell'orchestrazione anni '30 di Weingartner. Quando ho visto per la prima volta Fantasia? Non ricordo, ma dovevo avere quattro o cinque anni. A Milano. I miei mi portarono al cinema, sicuramente, e qualcosa deve essersi depositato profondamente nella mia memoria. La Sesta sinfonia mi sembra di conoscerla da sempre.

Questa, però, è preistoria. La storia dei miei ascolti musicali comincia invece a metà degli anni '80. Avevo (o meglio, i miei genitori avevano) un magnetofono da tavolo a cassette, di quelli che si usavano per registrare pro-memoria e appunti vocali. Io lo usavo per sentire musica. Le cassette le avevo comprate all'uscita da scuola, prima di prendere il treno che mi avrebbe ricondotto a casa.

Il corso principale della città dove frequentavo il liceo scientifico aveva due negozi di dischi. Quello della signora Esposito era il più fornito: aveva dei meravigliosi cataloghi delle principali case discografiche. I cataloghi, però, mi mettevano in imbarazzo. Avrei voluto consultarli per ore, ma non stava bene: a un certo punto bisognava scegliere e ordinare. E poi, la cassetta arrivava dopo settimane, e a quell'epoca ero molto impaziente.

Il negozio del signor Cavo (dischi ed elettrodomestici, nomen omen) era più piccolo, ma aveva la particolarità di essere praticamente sempre aperto. Arrivavi col treno la mattina presto e trovavi già la saracinesca alzata, oppure perdevi il primo treno del ritorno, e potevi comunque rifugiarti una mezz'oretta da Cavo a contemplare lo scaffale con le cassette, senza essere disturbato (era, e per quanto ne so è ancora, un uomo di una discrezione esemplare, cosa non frequente in provincia). Potevi stare lì davanti quanto volevi prima di scegliere cosa comprare, oppure anche uscire senza aver preso niente, con un semplice grazie e arrivederci.

Ma, quando avevo diecimila lire in tasca, mi piaceva sempre entrare da Cavo per poi uscirne con una cassetta di Mozart o di Beethoven ben sistemata in mezzo ai libri - che tenevo orgogliosamente legati con una cinta elastica, per distinguermi dai miei compagni che sfoggiavano zainetti Invicta dai quali, durante l'intervallo, tiravano fuori i loro dischi di musica pop.

Intanto l'acqua bolle. Mezzo cucchiaino di sale. Apro la dispensa: pennette rigate o spaghetti? Opto per gli spaghetti: cuociono prima.

"La città dove frequentavo il liceo". Ho già scritto il nome di questa città? No. Lo scrivo adesso: Locri. Provincia di Reggio Calabria.

Da una vita, la semplice domanda "Di dove sei?" mi obbliga a fornire spiegazioni complicate e, suppongo, noiose, e anche poco convincenti. Ai tempi del liceo la risposta era semplice: di Africo. Se l'interlocutore era discreto, bastava così. Altrimenti scattava l'altra domanda: "E perché parli con l'accento milanese?" - Sai, la mia famiglia abitava a Milano, poi ci siamo trasferiti in Calabria. "Ah, allora i tuoi sono milanesi". - Niente affatto, siamo calabresi da chissà quante generazioni; ma i miei erano emigrati a Milano alla fine degli anni '60. "E come mai siete tornati qui?" - Uffa...

Da quando sto al Nord, la spiegazione è diventata ancora più involuta e implausibile. Se ci penso, mi vedo in un commissariato di polizia, seduto davanti a una lampada da tavolo puntata addosso a me, mentre l'ispettore, nascosto in una minacciosa penombra, mi inquisisce. "Ricominciamo daccapo. Di dove sei?" - Di Vigevano. "Ma non parli con l'accento di Vigevano". - No, perché sono calabrese. "Ma sul documento c'è scritto che sei nato a Milano". - Sì, perché all'epoca i miei abitavano lì. "Ah. E adesso dove abitano?" - Ad Africo. "Prima hai detto a Bianco." - Sì, anagraficamente stanno a Bianco. Sono due paesi confinanti. In realtà casa dei miei è tra Africo e Bianco, sulla statale. Ma comunque è più vicina ad Africo che a Bianco, anche se, sulla carta, è nel territorio di Bianco. Però i miei sono di Africo. "Ricominciamo daccapo..."

Intanto l'op. 106 di Beethoven, trascritta da Weingartner, è finita. Devo cambiare il CD. Ho ancora una cinquantina di minuti prima di tornare in ufficio. Cosa metto?

Scelgo velocemente, prima che la pasta scuocia: Invenzioni a due e tre voci di J. S. Bach. Glenn Gould, al pianoforte.

Butto gli spaghetti nello scolapasta. Che senso ha suonare il piano facendo finta che sia un clavicembalo? Venticinque anni che ascolto Gould e me lo chiedo.

Dicembre millenovecentoottantotto. Pomeriggio. Devo studiare per l'interrogazione di matematica. Non ne ho proprio voglia. Slego il fardello dei libri di scuola e ne estraggo il mio acquisto di oggi. Una cassetta made in U.S.A., dall'elegantissima copertina nera bordata d'oro. Bach, Inventions and Sinfonias. Glenn Gould.

Metto la cassetta nel mangianastri. Una musica astratta, trasparente, cantabile. Sembra provenire dallo spazio siderale, eppure i contorni si distinguono con precisione. Una sensazione di freddo secco, fine e pungente.

Guardai fuori. Non potevo crederci: stava nevicando. La casa dei miei è sul mare; l'Aspromonte dista solo una cinquantina di chilometri, ma qui sulla costa l'inverno è mite, la neve è un evento che capita forse una volta ogni dieci anni. Capitò quella volta. Mi alzai dalla scrivania e andai alla finestra a vedere i cristalli che scendevano lentamente.

L'inverno è mite, sulla costa ionica della Calabria. La stagione peggiore è l'autunno. A fine ottobre le piogge arrivano improvvise, massicce e violente, e possono durare per settimane. Non c'è che da chiudersi in casa e aspettare che passino.

Ho sedici anni e sto correndo attraverso la piazza principale di Locri verso la stazione. Il cielo è nero, l'aria è elettrica e tra poco scoppierà un forte temporale. Stavolta ho perso troppo tempo dalla signora Esposito, non sapevo decidermi, alla fine ho comprato la Sesta sinfonia di Beethoven e i concerti K. 488 e K. 491 nell'interpretazione di Daniel Barenboim, ma ora rischio di perdere il treno. La Sesta un po' la conosco, è quella della pubblicità. Ma il Concerto in do minore. Chissà com'è. Mozart scrive raramente in minore. Ma quando lo fa, mette i brividi. Mi precipito con il cuore in gola, mentre le bobine sbattono ritmicamente contro l'involucro di plastica nascosto fra i libri.

"Secondo le testimonianze di molta gente che ha vissuto in prima persona quei tragici giorni dell'alluvione e attraverso dei libri pubblicati da alcuni scrittori del paese, il 15 ottobre 1951 rappresenta una data indimenticabile e storica per il popolo di Africo in quanto un evento imprevisto sconvolse l’esistenza di Africo e della sua frazione, Casalnuovo. Per quattro giorni consecutivi dal 15 al 18 ottobre 1951, una bufera di vento, pioggia e nevischio si abbatté ininterrottamente sui due paesi causando frane, crolli di abitazioni e la distruzione di intere colture. La gente, spaventata, si riversò in massa in chiesa, pregando Dio e il suo Santo protettore, San Leo. La catastrofe avvenne soprattutto giorno 17 con continue frane, smottamenti di terreno, pioggia battente e violenta".

"La mattina del 18 ottobre la gente ricorda un'aria rossastra su nel cielo che metteva paura solo ad osservarla. [...] Molti furono quelli che, sorpresi dal maltempo, non fecero in tempo a mettersi in salvo, perché la piena del fiume impedì loro la via del ritorno a casa. Alla fine i due paesi contarono i danni: i morti furono sei a Casalnuovo e tre ad Africo. Gran parte del bestiame fu trascinato dal fiume, le case furono per la maggior parte distrutte e sepolte, le colture non più esistenti perché trascinate dalla pioggia."

"La lenta organizzazione della vita civile e della lotta politica fu sconvolta dall'alluvione del 1951. Una frana spazzò via il paese. I morti furono pochi, ma Africo scomparve. La storia della ricostruzione è allucinante. Per tutto un decennio gli africoti cercarono il terreno per ricomporre la loro comunità. Si iniziò una lotta tra chi voleva tornare nel vecchio territorio, dove erano restate le misere proprietà, e quelli che cercavano una sistemazione nuova. La scelta di una soluzione divise i due campi, anche la sinistra. Alla fine prevalse la tesi, sostenuta da don Stilo e dalla DC, di costruire un nuovo comune in una località distante 50 chilometri dal vecchio paese. Per lunghi anni la maggioranza degli africoti visse in un campo profughi. All'inizio del 1960 era sorta Africo Nuovo".

Un bambino di nove anni. Una bambina di due anni. Che esperienza possono aver fatto della catastrofe, e poi della loro condizione di profughi? Come l'hanno vissuta? Che tracce ha lasciato su di loro?

I miei genitori mi hanno parlato pochissimo dell'alluvione e degli eventi successivi. Hanno sempre insistito affinché studiassi, hanno incoraggiato i miei interessi per la musica, la letteratura, le scienze. Mi hanno sostenuto fino al diploma, poi fino alla laurea. Ma sugli eventi del loro paese non mi hanno mai detto molto.

Mio padre non sopporta il vento. Se è notte, e fuori c'è vento, non riesce a dormire.

"Non si è mai capito - manca una documentazione e mancano anche testimonianze orali credibili - se fu la mafia calabrese a premere per ricostruire Africo nel territorio di Bianco, senza terra, senza delimitazione territoriale e stato giuridico (com'è rimasto fino al 1980), in una località dove i contadini poveri, la grande maggioranza degli abitanti, sarebbero stati privati di quei diritti civici - il legnatico, il seminativo, il pascolo - di cui godevano nel vecchio paese. Da una montagna aspra al mare. Un caso esemplare di perdita dell'identità individuale e collettiva: gli abitanti di Africo infatti non sono più pastori né contadini, odiano il mare e non sono diventati né pescatori né marinai".

Ho diciannove anni. Preparo l'esame di maturità ascoltando la Sinfonia Italiana di Mendelssohn e la Sinfonia Incompiuta di Schubert. L'incongruità della situazione mi è divenuta insopportabile: che senso ha vivere in Calabria stando sempre chiuso in casa, parlare con un ridicolo accento settentrionale e, in generale, far finta di abitare in Mitteleuropa? A questo punto, non è meglio emigrare? Spengo il registratore e accendo la radio. Trasmettono The End dei Doors. C'è l'anniversario della morte di Jim Morrison.

Alla maturità, filosofia non è uscita. Peccato. Mi sarebbe piaciuto portare Kant. Non capisco perché tutti dicono che è un pensatore difficile: a me sembra così naturale, così ovvio. Certo: lo spazio, il tempo, sono forme della nostra mente. Ma, in sé, non esistono affatto.

Spengo lo stereo, aziono la lavastoviglie. E' ora di tornare in ufficio.

(Racconto pubblicato anche su Evulon. Nota: tutti i paragrafi tra virgolette sono tratti dal sito Internet di un mio compaesano, http://www.giuseppemorabito.it tranne l'ultimo che è tratto da Corrado Stajano, L'Italia ferita. Storie di un popolo che vorrebbe vivere secondo le regole della democrazia, Cinemazero, Pordenone 2010, pag. 96).
          Adagio in sol minore        
Roma, giugno 1984.

Una folla immensa e silenziosa riempie il centro della città. Un milione di persone, venute da tutta Italia per rendere l'ultimo saluto al segretario nazionale, abbattuto da un ictus durante un comizio. Piazza San Giovanni è troppo piccola. Le bandiere rosse sventolano nel sole, ovunque. Molti piangono.

Mentre il feretro esce dalla sede del partito, un sistema di altoparlanti inizia a diffondere una musica lamentosa, straziante.

L'Adagio di Albinoni.


Venezia, febbraio 1958.

Il freddo umido entra nelle ossa. Due uomini passeggiano lungo le Fondamenta della Misericordia, in mezzo a una fitta nebbia.

"Cusa l'è 'sta spüssa?"

Quello che ha parlato si chiama Mario e viene da Milano.

L'altro è il musicologo Andrea Mocenigo. "Quest'odore - risponde pazientemente all'amico - è l'acqua bassa. Ritirandosi, lascia scoperti i detriti sul fondo del canale. Dopo un po' ci fai l'abitudine".

"Va beh, Andrea, ma che schifo. Cià, mettiamoci al chiuso, ti offro un camparino".

Entrarono in un caffé e si sedettero. "Allora, camerata" disse Mario. "Parlami un po' delle tue ricerche".

Andrea lanciò una rapida occhiata intorno, per accertarsi che nessuno avesse sentito l'appellativo rivoltogli da Mario. Poi rispose: "Se vuoi parlare di politica, andiamo in un altro posto. Qui non è zona nostra". Gli sembrava che, da dietro il bancone, il barista li stesse già guardando male.

"Tranquillo. Niente politica. Sono venuto a Venezia solo per affari. E per rivedere qualche vecchio... amico. Lavoro per casa Ricordi, come sai. Nel tuo caso, unisco l'utile al dilettevole. Saremmo contenti di riaverti come collaboratore. Qualcuno ancora ha presente quel tuo strepitoso articolo del '40, come s'intitolava? L'arte di Verdi nell'era fascista. Poter pubblicare ancora delle robe così..."

"Altri tempi", disse Andrea.

"Altri tempi, già" concordò Mario. "Ma torneranno, torneranno, te l'assicuro... Veniamo a noi. Mi hai scritto di avere delle novità clamorose, no? E alura, tira fuori il rospo".

"No, no", Mocenigo mise le mani avanti. "Andiamoci piano. Novità grosse ancora non ne ho. Continuo a lavorare alla monografia su Vivaldi. Sarà pronta fra un anno o due. E poi c'è l'edizione delle opere di Albinoni, di cui ti ho scritto..."

"Ah, che meraviglia!" lo interruppe Mario. "Come t'invidio! Il barocco... Immergersi in quell'epoca dorata. Allora sì che regnava l'ordine: i re erano re, i nobili erano nobili, e la plebe era plebe! Ognuno al suo posto. Onore, fedeltà e disciplina! Non questa cosiddetta repubblica che c'è oggi, dove anche i figli degli operai vogliono diventare dottori. Per me un Campari e soda, tu cosa prendi?"

Era arrivata la cameriera a raccogliere le ordinazioni. Tornò poco dopo con le bevande. Mario le si rivolse ora con fare mellifluo. "Ma dica, signorina, cosa fa, lei, dopo il lavoro? Se vuole, passo a prenderla. Io sto all'Hotel Silva, ha presente? Vicino piazza San Marco. Un posto di gran lusso, sa? C'è una bellissima buvette, e si potrebbe bere insieme una flûte di champagne d'annata..."

La ragazza non rispose. Lasciò i due aperitivi sul tavolino, e si allontanò mormorando "Ma va' in mona".

"Bella gnocca, eh?" ammiccò Mario al suo amico. "Cos'è che ha detto?"

Andrea ridacchiò. "A una fanciulla / un vecchio come lei non può far nulla. Ecco cosa ti ha detto", rispose.

Mario si rabbuiò. "Lascia perdere il Mozart, quel pirlotto. Solo lui poteva farsi infinocchiare da un depravato ebreo come Da Ponte, al punto da mettere in musica versi così immorali. Se oggi non c'è più religione, è anche per colpa di gente come loro. Ma mi stavi dicendo di Albinoni. Continua".

"Ecco, mi sono immerso nella materia, come dici tu. E sai com'è, mi sono talmente immedesimato... che ho composto un pezzo. Un omaggio, un tributo, chiamalo come vuoi. Un breve adagio, per archi e organo, nello stile di Albinoni. Volevo fartelo leggere. Ecco, ce l'ho qui con me". Mocenigo si chinò, estrasse una partitura manoscritta dalla ventiquattrore e la porse a Mario.

Mario lesse con attenzione. Poi restituì la partitura ad Andrea.

"Allora?" chiese Andrea.

"Allora niente", rispose Mario. "E' bellissimo. E' un capolavoro. Lo pubblichiamo senz'altro. Però, guarda che ti sbagli. Non l'hai scritto tu, questo Adagio".

"No?" disse Andrea, stupito.

"No. Questo è un adagio inedito di Tomaso Albinoni, che faceva parte dei manoscritti del compositore, già conservati alla biblioteca di Dresda, e che tu hai fortunosamente scoperto. Come sappiamo, la biblioteca fu distrutta tredici anni fa, da un criminale bombardamento aereo angloamericano. Pochi, miseri frammenti sono scampati allo scempio, ritrovati fra le macerie. Da essi, tu hai sapientemente ricostruito questo Adagio, che ora sarà restituito alla riverente e commossa ammirazione del pubblico, quale ultima testimonianza di un'epoca di splendore ingiustamente tramontata. Spiegherai tutto nella prefazione alla partitura. Ah, tra parentesi: non preoccuparti per i diritti di copyright. Spetteranno a te, in qualità di arrangiatore. Prevedo che te ne verranno un bel po' di dané".

Andrea Mocenigo rimase senza parole. Poi balbettò: "Ma... ma sarebbe un falso bello e buono! Scusa, chi vuoi che ci creda? E quella roba, che secondo te dovrei scrivere: il 'criminale bombardamento alleato' e via dicendo! Come se la Luftwaffe, invece, sganciasse mazzi di fiori. No, mi rideranno in faccia. Non si può fare, mi spiace".

"Da che parte stai?", chiese Mario, gelido.

"Dalla tua! Ma scusami ancora, Mario. Non ti posso seguire in quello che mi proponi. Non siamo più nel 1940. C'è stata la guerra. L'occupazione tedesca, la gente se la ricorda bene, e oggi come oggi non gli puoi raccontare una storia in cui noi camerati figuriamo come le povere vittime. Senza contare che sarebbe una storia falsa, e prima o poi si verrà a sapere, e allora che figura ci faccio?"

Mario sospirò. Bevve un sorso del suo aperitivo, poi si appoggiò allo schienale. "Senti, Andrea" disse. "La nostra battaglia non comincia e non finisce oggi. Devi capire che noi lavoriamo per il lontano futuro. Hai detto bene: oggi, la gente non è bendisposta verso di noi. Per creare il Nuovo Ordine, il Reich Millenario, abbiamo dovuto procedere con estrema durezza. E, per ora, siamo stati sconfitti. Ma fra venti, trenta o quarant'anni, quando saranno scomparsi coloro che oggi ricordano certi... spiacevoli inconvenienti, allora la nostra Idea tornerà ad affascinare i popoli. Fino ad allora, si tratta di guadagnare terreno, a poco a poco, tenacemente. Partendo anche dai dettagli. E poi, il bombardamento di Dresda c'è stato per davvero, no? Cominciamo col dirlo".

"Sì, ma la storia dell'Adagio trovato fra le macerie è una balla", rispose Andrea.

Mario si spazientì. "Balla, non balla! Chi se ne frega! La verità è ciò che riesci a far passare per tale. Tu offri al pubblico una musica seducente e ben scritta, condita da una storia romantica. Vedrai che ti crederanno. Populus vult decipi, caro mio. Et decipiatur! Il popolo vuole essere ingannato. E allora, lo si inganni! E comunque" continuò Mario "se vuoi pubblicare con noi, queste sono le condizioni. E adesso usciamo, ché mi son rotto gli zebedei a stare qui".

All'uscita del locale, Mario e Andrea furono circondati da una torma di ragazzini in maschera, che improvvisarono un girotondo, e che se ne andarono solo quando Andrea, ridendo, ebbe dato loro qualche monetina. Mario, intanto, ostentava la più completa indifferenza.

"Ma tu dici che l'Adagio piacerà? Non somiglia troppo a Mascagni?", chiese Andrea.

"Ma va là! Il tuo è barocco purissimo, te lo dico io. Farà furore. Suonerà come le campane a morto, contro la robaccia negroide-bolscevica che va di moda oggi. E comunque, Mascagni era dei nostri anca lü".

Si allontanarono nella nebbia, mentre il puzzo di fogna si faceva sempre più forte.

(Pubblicato su Evulon il 21 aprile 2011. Nell'immagine: il bombardamento di Guernica del 26 aprile 1937. Fotografia tratta dalla pagina che ho linkato sopra).


          Mozart schedato da Buscaroli        
Va subito detto che il titolo del libro di Piero Buscaroli, La morte di Mozart (Rizzoli, Milano 1996, pp. 373) è fuorviante. L'oggetto della trattazione di Buscaroli non è, infatti, "la morte di Mozart", bensì gli ultimi dieci anni di vita del grande compositore. L'intento dichiarato di Buscaroli è quello di demolire tutta una serie di leggende, falsità e luoghi comuni che, secondo lui, si sarebbero accumulati intorno alla figura di Mozart ad opera dei suoi biografi otto e novecenteschi: il Mozart di Buscaroli sarebbe infine quello genuino ed autentico, finalmente restituitoci dopo due secoli di menzogne.

Mi sembra che il punto di vista di Buscaroli sia politicamente determinato e che questa componente politica sia un elemento essenziale del suo metodo. Infatti, Buscaroli è un nostalgico dell'ancien régime, né più né meno. Tutto ciò che deriva dall'Illuminismo e dalla Rivoluzione francese, per Buscaroli, è pura e semplice aberrazione. Buscaroli non accetta nulla della modernità; del feudalesimo, invece, rimpiange ogni aspetto (per esempio anche l'elevata mortalità infantile, p. 261). Questo suo punto di vista radicalmente antimoderno dovrebbe, nelle intenzioni di Buscaroli, garantirgli una completa indipendenza dalle ideologie correnti nella nostra epoca e consentirgli così di vederci più chiaro di ogni altro biografo mozartiano prima di lui.

In altre parole, il libro di Buscaroli non si basa affatto su una ricerca archivistica che abbia prodotto fonti inedite e di prima mano. Si basa, invece, sulla reinterpretazione delle fonti già note, le quali, sotto l'occhio limpido e scevro di pregiudizi di Piero Buscaroli, rivelerebbero alfine quella verità che nessuno, prima di lui, aveva veduto.

Le fonti principali di Buscaroli sono infatti: l'epistolario mozartiano; la raccolta di documenti a cura di Erich Deutsch Mozart. Die Dokumente seines Lebens, Kassel 1961; e le prime biografie mozartiane di Schlichtegroll (1793), Niemetschek (1798), Nissen (1828) e Jahn (1856-59). Sono tutti materiali ben conosciuti e ampiamente utilizzati dalla critica mozartiana. Buscaroli esprime invece il massimo disprezzo per il W. A. Mozart di Hermann Abert (1921), opera considerata fondamentale da tutti ma non da Buscaroli il quale, naturalmente, è anche in costante e aspra polemica con quasi tutta la critica mozartiana novecentesca.

Vediamo allora, più nel dettaglio, qual è il bersaglio polemico della ricostruzione buscaroliana.

Mozart, che all'età di venticinque anni lasciò il servizio dell'Arcivescovo di Salisburgo per trasferirsi a Vienna, dove cercò di mantenersi con i proventi della sua attività di pianista e compositore, è oggi celebrato come il primo grande musicista dell'epoca borghese, colui il quale, per primo, tentò di conquistarsi lo status di libero artista, riscattando così la figura del musicista dal suo ruolo di dipendente delle corti. Nelle parole del sociologo Norbert Elias (1991): "Da outsider borghese al servizio della corte, Mozart combatté fino in fondo, con incredibile coraggio, una battaglia di affrancamento dai suoi padroni e committenti aristocratici. Lo fece di propria iniziativa, per amore della propria dignità di uomo e del proprio lavoro di musicista. E perse la battaglia [...]". Secondo Elias, Mozart perse la battaglia (e la vita) in quanto i tempi non erano ancora maturi per lui: la lotta di Mozart si svolse in una nazione, l'Austria del settecento, che si trovava "in una fase dello sviluppo sociale nella quale i rapporti di potere tradizionali erano praticamente ancora intatti".

Per l'ultrareazionario Buscaroli, questa moderna visione di Mozart come artista rivoluzionario è fumo negli occhi. Con grande insistenza, Buscaroli ci propone invece un Mozart meschino, pavido e conformista, caratterizzato dalla "evidente mancanza di superiori doti intellettuali e morali" (p. 342). "Mai anelò al riscatto sociale e politico della figura dell'artista, cercava un reddito fisso, ma alto" (p. 32). "Il libero mercato dell'arte gli si spalanca, e lui continua a sperare in un impiego a corte, meglio a Vienna, dove potrebbe, tutt'al più, raddoppiare lo stipendio di ora. Uomo libero è solo a parole [...]. I suoi sogni sono quelli di un impiegato" (pp. 183-4).

Tutto il libro di Buscaroli pullula di simili osservazioni, che in verità sono reiterate tanto spesso, quanto poco sono seriamente argomentate. E non potrebbe essere diversamente, dato che, come ho detto sopra, le fonti di Buscaroli sono le stesse dei critici mozartiani che lui tanto disprezza. Se, per loro, queste fonti disegnano una determinata figura e per Buscaroli la figura esattamente opposta, ciò dipenderebbe solo dal fatto che Buscaroli è intelligente e onesto, mentre gli altri autori sono stupidi e/o in malafede.

Un esempio del metodo argomentativo di Buscaroli lo si trova nella trattazione delle dimissioni di Mozart dalla corte arcivescovile di Salisburgo nel giugno 1781. In quella circostanza, com'è noto, il segretario dell'Arcivescovo, un tale conte Arco, per tutta risposta all'insistenza con cui Mozart continuava a chiedergli di accettare la sua richiesta di dimissioni, assestò al musicista un calcio nel sedere. Questo episodio, che ha suscitato l'indignazione unanime di tutta la posterità, viene raccontato da Buscaroli con le tecniche adottate dagli avvocati difensori di chi viene processato per stupro:
A) minimizzare. "Credette di dover ridurre alla ragione il musicista ribelle con la zotica seppur benintenzionata famigliarità elargita a sguatteri e inservienti".
B) Insinuare dubbi sulla veridicità del fatto. "E se fosse tutta invenzione [...]?"
C) Sostenere che la vittima, in fondo, se l'è cercata. "E il giovane genio dal corpo minuto [...] fece tutto quanto poteva per trarlo fuori dai gangheri" (tutte le citazioni sono dalla p. 53).
Il tutto al palese scopo di tessere l'apologia di un sistema sociale, nel quale era possibile che un Mozart venisse preso a calci dallo scagnozzo di un feudatario.

A ciò aggiungiamo il fatto che, della musica di Mozart, Buscaroli parla poco o nulla: al Don Giovanni sono dedicate in tutto 3 (tre) pagine, nelle quali Buscaroli si limita a dirci che Da Ponte copiò il libretto da Giovanni Bertati; e sai che novità! Questo ci dà la misura di quanto la lettura di questo libro possa risultare tediosa e irritante.

Questo, almeno, per le prime duecentosessanta pagine. E' solo quando Buscaroli inizia a parlare degli ultimi mesi di vita di Mozart, che il suo discorso comincia a farsi un minimo interessante. A proposito della genesi del Requiem, Buscaroli propone una tesi che, pur non essendo necessariamente giusta, non è né futile né banale. Secondo Buscaroli (il quale, per una volta, avverte onestamente il lettore di non aver prove di quanto afferma: p. 324), l'incompiutezza del Requiem non sarebbe dovuta alla morte improvvisa del compositore, bensì ad una sua scelta deliberata. Infatti, Mozart fu incaricato della composizione da un nobile musicista dilettante, il conte Walsegg-Stuppach, il quale intendeva appropriarsi della stessa paternità dell'opera: il conte voleva cioè far eseguire il Requiem (dalla propria orchestra di corte) figurandone lui come autore.

Secondo Buscaroli, quando Mozart si rese conto dei termini di questo incarico (che inizialmente aveva accettato per necessità di denaro), maturò un invincibile disgusto per il lavoro che gli era stato commissionato: la sua coscienza artistica e professionale si ribellò all'idea di dover comporre un'opera che non avrebbe mai potuto rivendicare come sua. Sarebbe questo, secondo Buscaroli, il vero motivo per cui il Requiem rimase incompiuto.

Una prova a sostegno della sua ricostruzione sarebbe costituita, secondo Buscaroli (il quale considera il Requiem di Mozart un'opera minore e mal riuscita), dalla stessa scarsa qualità musicale della composizione. Mozart, cioè, sapeva di dover scrivere un'opera che sarebbe andata sotto il nome di un musicista dilettante: perciò la scrisse in modo volutamente sciatto, adoperando ad esempio un "contrappunto opaco, scontato, da manuale" (p. 325), e alla fine si rifiutò senz'altro di completarla, meditandone probabilmente la distruzione.

Buscaroli, però, sembra non rendersi conto che quanto lui scrive in queste pagine finali, a proposito del Mozart autore del Requiem, contraddice in modo stridente quanto egli stesso ha sostenuto nel corso di tutti i capitoli precedenti. Se Mozart, dal 1781 fino all'estate del 1791, era quel piccolo-borghese pusillanime e opportunista che Buscaroli si è sforzato di dipingere, come si spiega questo improvviso scatto di orgoglio e di dignità a pochi mesi dalla morte?

A me sembra, invece, che in queste pagine finali gli occhiali dell'ideologia siano in qualche modo caduti dal naso di Buscaroli, il quale, alla fine, non può a fare a meno di riconoscere a Mozart quelle qualità umane che fin qui gli aveva ostinatamente e faziosamente negato.

Per finire, ho seri dubbi sulla valutazione critica che Buscaroli riserva al Requiem. Non trascurerei il fatto che quest'opera sembra attualmente la più popolare fra quelle del suo autore. Ad esempio, se si digita Mozart nella casella di ricerca di "YouTube", il Requiem è la prima opzione che viene proposta. Senza dubbio, ciò si deve in gran parte al film Amadeus. Ma in parte, secondo me, lo si deve anche alla relativa semplicità di fruizione del Requiem che Buscaroli, a suo modo, evidenzia, pur senza comprenderne le ragioni. Non dimentichiamo che Mozart, poco prima di morire, fu testimone dell'enorme successo del suo Flauto Magico, un'opera scritta per un teatro della periferia di Vienna e destinata ad un pubblico popolare.

Forse Mozart, dopo aver volutamente sfidato il gusto dell'aristocrazia, e dopo l'amara esperienza del mancato sostegno da parte del pubblico borghese, negli ultimi mesi di vita iniziò a intravedere la possibilità di rivolgersi ad un pubblico interamente nuovo, posto al di fuori delle classi dominanti del presente e dell'immediato futuro. E cominciò a orientare la sua scrittura musicale all'obiettivo di conquistare ed educare, se necessario anche calibrando il livello di complessità compositiva, questo nuovo pubblico.

(Trovate la presente recensione anche su Evulon).
          Il terremoto di Messina del 1908        
Ripubblico qui di seguito una mia recensione (risalente a sei anni fa) al libro di Giorgio Boatti, La terra trema. Messina 28 dicembre 1908. I trenta secondi che cambiarono l'Italia, non gli italiani, Mondadori, Milano 2004, pp. 414, € 18,50.

"Ore 5.20 terremoto distrusse buona parte Messina - Giudico morti molte centinaia - case crollate sgombro macerie insufficienti mezzi locali - urgono soccorsi per sgombro vettovagliamento assistenza feriti - ogni aiuto sarà insufficiente".

E' il testo del telegramma con cui il governo italiano apprese del terremoto di Messina: inviato dal comandante di una nave militare da una stazione telegrafica calabrese alle 14.50 del 28 dicembre 1908, giunse al Ministero degli Interni alle 17.35 dello stesso giorno, cioè dodici ore dopo il disastro.
In questo telegramma la valutazione dei danni è naturalmente molto sottostimata: il terremoto, dell'undicesimo grado della scala Mercalli, distrusse quasi completamente le città di Messina e Reggio Calabria e causò, secondo le statistiche ufficiali, 77.283 morti (in altre valutazioni la cifra oscilla fra le 80.000 e le 140.000 vittime).

A volte, quando ci si sofferma a considerarla, la storia del nostro paese sembra un'ininterrotta sequela di disastri. Ogni generazione ha la sua catastrofe civile da ricordare e anzi spesso più d'una, a volte d'origine naturale e a volte umana. Il copione sembra sempre lo stesso: evento tragico; prime ricostruzioni giornalistiche, concitate e a forti tinte; interviste ai superstiti; il cordoglio della nazione; le autorità dello stato si precipitano sul luogo dell'evento; polemiche sulla tempestività dei soccorsi e sulla loro efficienza; i parenti delle vittime accusano; funerali solenni; ancora polemiche finché i riflettori dei mass-media si spengono.

Questo libro di Giorgio Boatti sul terremoto di Messina si basa in gran parte su uno studio accurato dei giornali dell'epoca. Una prima constatazione è che in essi lo schema che ci è tristemente familiare appare già operante. Il governo di Giovanni Giolitti dovette ben presto difendersi dalle accuse di non aver compiuto in modo adeguato e tempestivo l'opera di soccorso delle popolazioni colpite. In particolare, l'opinione pubblica dell'epoca fu colpita dal fatto che i primi soccorsi organizzati non vennero apprestati da parte italiana, bensì, a partire dalla mattina del 29 dicembre, dagli equipaggi di squadre navali russe e inglesi che casualmente si trovavano nei pressi al momento del terremoto (equipaggi che, secondo tutte le testimonianze, svolsero la loro opera eroicamente). I primi soccorritori italiani, dell'ottavo reggimento dei Bersaglieri, provenienti da Palermo, sbarcarono solo nel pomeriggio inoltrato dello stesso giorno.

Ma la cosa che più colpisce nella reazione all'evento da parte del governo italiano non consiste tanto nella lentezza o inefficienza dei soccorsi, per la quale si possono addurre delle circostanze attenuanti: l'Italia era allora un paese povero, sottosviluppato rispetto alle altre nazioni europee; la stessa tecnologia dell'epoca non consentiva una grande rapidità di reazione; il terremoto danneggiò molto seriamente le infrastrutture e le vie di comunicazione nelle zone colpite; infine non esisteva ancora il moderno concetto di protezione civile e lo Stato italiano non era preparato ad affrontare simili emergenze.

Ciò che realmente sorprende è che fin dall'inizio, il governo e una parte della pubblica opinione sembrarono considerare il terremoto principalmente come un problema di ordine pubblico. Fra le prime preoccupazioni si registrano, infati, il timore delle epidemie e la paura dei saccheggi.

Scrive il quotidiano "La Tribuna" del 2 gennaio 1909: per impedire un'epidemia occorre "compiere l'opera distruggitrice perpetrata dal terremoto: buttare giù quel poco che resta di queste case, buttarlo giù nel modo più energico, più rapido: a colpi di cannone. Far sgomberare i pochissimi superstiti e dalle navi bombardare queste scarnificate vestigia della città (...) non v'è altra via per impedire che il luogo dov'era Messina diventi un centro d'infezione a cui nessuno osi più avvicinarsi". (p. 118). "Il Mattino" del 6-7 gennaio rilancia la stessa idea attribuendone la paternità al Re, mentre "Il Messaggero" del 6 gennaio suggerisce di ricorrere al fuoco: "Si dia in preda alle fiamme [Messina] per purificarla, o si ricostruisca con piccole case come una cittadina giapponese" (p. 119).

E' sconcertante che fra le prime misure suggerite dopo un terremoto, vi sia quella di deportare la popolazione colpita e poi bombardare la città: sembra che nel caso di Messina non si sia arrivato a tanto solo perché, a distanza di molti giorni dalla catastrofe, si continuavano a trovare dei sopravvissuti sotto le rovine. Ma si rimane ancora più stupiti quando si apprende che uno dei motivi che suggerirono queste misure estreme, fu la necessità di preservare dai furti i valori rimasti sotto le macerie e soprattutto i caveaux delle banche.

Il regio decreto del 4 gennaio 1909 stabiliva lo stato d'assedio nei territori colpiti dal terremoto e conferiva i pieni poteri per l'emergenza al generale di corpo d'armata Francesco Mazza (annota Boatti che una diceria popolare fa discendere dal suo cognome l'etimologia della locuzione siculo-calabra "non capire una mazza"). Installatosi con il suo stato maggiore a bordo di una lussuosa nave militare al largo, e senza scendere quasi mai a terra, il generale Mazza provvide a circondare Messina di un cordone sanitario di truppe, cui diede l'ordine di sparare su chiunque dall'esterno si avvicinasse alla città senza lasciapassare. Questo per impedire che bande di saccheggiatori si riversassero sul luogo del disastro.

Ecco alcuni passi tratti dal bando emanato dal generale Mazza il 10 gennaio, riportato integralmente a p. 374 del libro di Boatti: "1 - Sono sospesi fino a nuovo ordine gli scavi delle macerie da parte di privati cittadini, sia per rintracciare cadaveri, sia per recuperare valori. (...) Le persone trovate a scavare saranno considerate come ladri e deferite al tribunale di guerra. [Questo mentre ancora i parenti delle vittime cercavano i loro cari sotto le macerie, n.d.r.] Anche le truppe, nei lavori stradali che compiono, si limiteranno esclusivamente ai lavori di assestamento evitando di eseguire scavi. (...) 3 - E' proibito l'ingresso in città a tutte le persone non munite di regolare permesso rilasciato dall'autorità politica della provincia da cui provengono..."

Il 6 gennaio l'autorità militare ordina di sospendere la distribuzione di viveri ai superstiti. Saranno distribuiti viveri a bordo delle navi, solamente ai profughi che accetteranno d'imbarcarsi per lasciare la città. L'idea, commenta Boatti, è perciò quella di "utilizzare l'arma della fame e della sete per imporre (..) la desertificazione di Messina" (p. 135). Questa cinica soluzione non viene attuata perché, come accennavo sopra, alcuni dei sepolti sotto le macerie si ostinano a farsi ritrovare vivi anche dopo giorni e giorni dal terremoto; ma altresì per le perplessità espresse da una parte della pubblica opinione e anche per le proteste degli stessi messinesi: un'assemblea autoconvocata di cittadini chiede il 19 gennaio la revoca dello stato d'assedio. Stato d'assedio che - osserva con sarcasmo il corrispondente de "Il Mattino" del 6 gennaio 1909 - sembra avere lo scopo precipuo di garantire "il sonno ai morti e la biancheria, gli oggetti e i titoli di banca ai vivi" (p. 137).

In seguito Giolitti giustificò la scelta di dare priorità al recupero dei valori, adducendo il timore di speculazioni al ribasso sulla lira (p. 146). Boatti propone un'altra spiegazione: "La difesa delle proprietà, la guardia ai caveaux delle banche, il salvataggio dei lingotti che mette in secondo piano altri interventi è una linea d'azione adottata, anzi, sbandierata, perché dal disordine - anche sociale - del terremoto emerga alfine una visione dove a prevalere è l'ordine, lo status quo, l'autorità e il prestigio dell'apparato dello Stato. (...) Salvare milioni, o lingotti, dopo tutto è meno complicato che cercare di strappare alla morte, in una gara contro il tempo, migliaia di sepolti vivi" (p.155).

A questo atteggiamento grettamente calcolatore da parte degli apparati dello Stato si contrappone lo slancio di solidarietà manifestato da più parti della società. In poche settimane si raccolgono più di ventun milioni di lire (dell'epoca) in sottoscrizioni, buona parte delle quali provenienti dall'estero. La cosa non manca anzi di creare preoccupazioni nelle alte sfere: non si rischierà di creare l'abitudine all'assistenza, al farsi mantenere dallo Stato, a quello che oggi si chiama assistenzialismo? Sua Altezza Reale il Duca d'Aosta esprime autorevolmente questo cruccio quando afferma che "è immorale mantenere un'orda di vagabondi e creare oziosi" (p. 234).

Non si trattò soltanto di solidarietà finanziaria. Volontari affluirono da tutta Italia per prestare opera di soccorso. Boatti dedica particolare attenzione alla vicenda di uno di essi, il parlamentare parmense Giuseppe Micheli, un deputato cattolico che, arrivato a Messina pochi giorni dopo il terremoto, subito mise in piedi, con la collaborazione dell'Arcivescovo, un "comitato messinese di soccorso", a carattere volontario, che si rivelò un'organizzazione semiufficiale sotto molti aspetti più efficiente di quella statale (pp. 263-68). Un'altra figura che emerge è quella dell'ex sindaco socialista di Catania Giuseppe De Felice Giuffrida, che era stato protagonista pochi anni prima di una delle esperienze politico-amministrative più avanzate della Sicilia dell'epoca: da sindaco della sua città aveva promosso forme di socializzazione dei servizi pubblici (forni municipalizzati, cucine popolari), la cui esperienza risultò ora preziosa per organizzare la distribuzione dei viveri ai superstiti del terremoto (pp. 203-4).

La miseria delle regioni colpite dal terremoto impressionò molti degli osservatori e degli inviati giunti sul luogo della catastrofe. Qualcuno propose dei rimedi; ad esempio il letterato Giovanni Cena suggerì, naturalmente quale misura temporanea, quella di emigrare. "Parecchi anni di duro tirocinio all'estero (...): poi gli emigranti calabresi torneranno altri uomini e non domanderanno più nulla, fuorché il loro buon diritto di cittadini" (p. 381). (Oggi si può dire che noi calabresi abbiamo seguito il consiglio, e che gli "anni di tirocinio" sono stati effettivamente molti, anzi durano tuttora. Sarà che siamo un po' lenti ad imparare?).

Il libro di Boatti non manca di sottolineare l'imprevidenza e anche l'incoscienza generalizzata che indussero i cittadini di Messina e Reggio Calabria (le città che oggi qualcuno vorrebbe unire con un ponte lungo tre chilometri, inutile, dannoso e pericoloso) a costruire tutto, anche gli edifici pubblici, al di fuori delle più elementari regole di sicurezza. Le fotografie che corredano il volume illustrano un panorama di distruzione impressionante, ove emerge, unica costruzione intatta perché edificata con criteri antisismici, il villino di un medico messinese.

Nella sua ricognizione della pubblicistica dell'epoca, Boatti dedica due capitoli ad alcune singolari polemiche: quella (cap. XVII) fra autorità laiche e cattoliche riguardo alla sistemazione degli orfani del terremoto (il Vaticano pretendeva ovviamente che fossero tutti educati "in Cristo" nei suoi istituti), e quella concernente il destino dell'Università di Messina, di cui alcuni illustri cattedratici proposero senz'altro la chiusura, in base alla considerazione che di università ce n'erano fin troppe e che in particolare quelle meridionali erano diplomifici per giovani sfaccendati (pp. 276-7).

Boatti chiude la sua esposizione con un'osservazione suggestiva: la "meglio gioventù" dei volontari del terremoto, poco dopo, buttò via inutilmente la propria carica di idealismo e di amor patrio, la propria volontà di fare e di cambiare le cose, nelle trincee della Prima guerra mondiale. Agli ordini (aggiungo io) di quella medesima classe dirigente ignorante, ottusa, autoritaria, incapace e meschinamente arroccata nella difesa dei propri privilegi, che aveva già dato prova di sé nella gestione ufficiale dell'emergenza-terremoto e che di lì a poco "inventerà" il fascismo.

Questo testo di Giorgio Boatti fa luce su un episodio importante e poco conosciuto della nostra storia nazionale, e lo fa (a differenza della pseudo-storiografia sensazionalistica e superficiale oggi di moda) con grande scrupolosità e metodo: il volume si chiude con ben cento pagine di appendice documentaria e di note al testo. Anche solo per questo sarebbe da raccomandare. Per chi come me proviene da una delle zone disastrate, la lettura di questo libro è irrinunciabile e consente di ritrovare la radice di mali antichi.

Originariamente pubblicato il 22 febbraio 2005, qui.
          Stella rossa sull'Europa        
"Buongiorno, Anne. Buon anno".
"Buongiorno, Valentin. Buon anno anche a te. Novità?"
"Sì. Un nuovo arrivo. Sabato notte. Hai il colloquio già fissato per le undici. Trovi tutti i dettagli in agenda".
Anne Dupont, psicologa del Centro di Prima Accoglienza di Calais, entrò nel suo ufficio, accese il terminale e consultò la sua agenda elettronica.

Lunedì 5 gennaio 2011, ore 11,00. Colloquio con Monsieur Philip Brasser. Cittadino britannico. Età 38. Celibe. Operazione di salvataggio in mare, Canale della Manica, acque internazionali, 3 gennaio u.s. Condizioni fisiche buone. Non parla francese. Attribuzione provvisoria: codice blu.

Bene, pensò Anne. Un rifugiato politico. Iniziare l'anno nuovo con un codice blu era di buon auspicio. Il colloquio era di lì a due ore. Non c'erano altri impegni per la giornata. Completò con calma alcuni referti clinici iniziati la settimana precedente, fece una partita a Tetris, chattò con alcuni amici in Internet. Quando fu il momento, si aggiustò il make-up e si recò in sala colloqui.

Era una stanza non troppo ampia, arredata come un normale studio specialistico ma con qualche accorgimento per mettere gli ospiti a proprio agio: colori pastello, luci soffuse, lettino basso, comoda poltrona. Su quest'ultima, di fronte alla scrivania della dottoressa, era già seduto il signor Brasser.

"Good morning, Mr. Brasser. Prima di tutto, come sta?"
La domanda non era solo formale. L'uomo appariva molto provato. I tanti capelli bianchi, la pelle del viso magro solcata da numerose rughe, le profonde occhiaie dietro le lenti spesse, lo facevano sembrare più vecchio di dieci anni rispetto alla sua età anagrafica. Al posto degli abiti che indossava al momento del suo salvataggio, fradici e inservibili, gli avevano fornito un nuovo completo, che era tuttavia di due numeri più largo e accentuava la gracilità del suo fisico. Gli tremavano le mani.
Quegli scafisti maledetti, pensò Anne.
"Adesso sto meglio, grazie. Certo, suppongo che la notte passata all'addiaccio su quel canotto non abbia migliorato granché la mia cera. Ma ho fatto una buona dormita, qui da voi, e la vostra cucina è ottima". La sua voce era ferma, con una sfumatura d'ironia. "Solamente, non sono riuscito a procurarmi neppure una sigaretta, dottoressa..."
"Dupont. Ma può chiamarmi Anne. Temo che non ne troverà neppure in futuro. Nell'Unione non se ne producono più. Fino a qualche tempo fa, le importavamo dal suo paese".
"Oh, già, ora ricordo. Le esportazioni cessarono sei anni fa. Troppo pochi fumatori, qui da voi. Non c'era abbastanza profitto. Lo so perché all'epoca lavoravo in un'agenzia di rating".
"Lei è analista finanziario?"
Il signor Brasser rise. "No. Laureato in agraria. Da Troody's ero operatore al call center. Ogni grande compagnia ha il suo. E' la mansione che ho sempre svolto, durante tutta la mia carriera. Ho lavorato per almeno trenta società diverse, ogni volta per non più di sei mesi. Si imparano tante cose, sa?"
"Non ho dubbi. Ma veniamo al punto. Lei ha chiesto lo status di rifugiato politico. Data la sua provenienza, certamente la sua richiesta sarà accettata. Lei diventerà fra breve, a tutti gli effetti, cittadino dell'Unione delle Repubbliche Socialiste d'Europa. Già adesso, comunque, lei è libero di circolare in tutto il territorio dell'Unione, ed eventualmente anche di tornare da dove è venuto..."
"No grazie! Non ci tengo affatto".
"Dicevo per dire. In genere, qui da noi i rifugiati si integrano abbastanza in fretta. Tuttavia, non si può escludere che, all'inizio, lei si trovi un po' spaesato. Il nostro sistema sociale è molto diverso da quello da cui lei proviene. A sua richiesta, lei può fruire di adeguata assistenza psicologica e culturale, per superare eventuali difficoltà di adattamento. In questa fase iniziale, se vuole, mi consideri pure come suo referente".
"Oh. E quanto dura questa... fase iniziale?"
"Può finire anche subito, se crede. L'unico suo obbligo, se intende rimanere nell'Unione, è di iscriversi nelle liste di collocamento e nelle graduatorie per gli alloggi. Non credo che le sarà difficile trovare un lavoro e una casa. Se lei non ha esigenze particolari, penso che troverà una sistemazione accettabile nel giro di un paio di settimane. Fino ad allora, comunque, può rimanere qui, o spostarsi in una delle altre strutture di prima accoglienza nel territorio dell'Unione".
"Sembra magnifico. Dov'è la fregatura?"
"Ecco. Era proprio ciò che intendevo. Non c'è nessuna fregatura, per quanto lei sia abituato a pensare che debba per forza esserci. Non pretendo che lei mi creda. Presto se ne accorgerà da sé".

Non c'erano straordinari da fare, quel giorno. Alle tredici, Anne spense il computer, salutò i colleghi che arrivavano per il turno pomeridiano e, senza passare dalla mensa, prese l'elio-tram che, serpeggiando silenziosamente lungo la costa, la portò a casa sua in dieci minuti. Era una magnifica giornata di sole. Il mare era inusualmente calmo, in quei giorni. Una fortuna, per Brasser. Aveva evitato il triste destino di tanti boat-people che partivano clandestinamente dalla riva inglese ma non riuscivano a raggiungere i nostri mezzi di soccorso nelle acque internazionali.

Anne abitava da sola. Si preparò un leggero pranzo macrobiotico, poi un caffé d'orzo. Accese la radio; la spense. Si guardò nello specchio del soggiorno. Sorrise. Tutto sommato, si piaceva. Si chiese come sarebbe stato il suo sembiante, alla sua età, se anziché in Europa continentale fosse vissuta in quell'inferno che doveva essere Londra. I profughi le avevano raccontato storie orribili. Inquinamento, degrado. Se andava bene, orari lavorativi di dieci o dodici ore. Altrimenti, la disoccupazione, l'emarginazione e la pazzia. Oppure, per una ristretta minoranza, la ricchezza e il potere, ma a costo di rinunciare a qualsiasi barlume d'umanità. Un'altra forma di follia, in fondo.

Mercoledì 7 gennaio, ore 10,00. Secondo colloquio con Monsieur Brasser.

Quella mattina l'aspetto di Mr. Brasser era molto migliorato. Anne glielo disse.
"Grazie, Dottoressa. Lei è gentile quanto bella".
Anne Dupont ignorò il complimento.
"Se ho chiesto un nuovo colloquio" continuò Brasser, "non è per ottenere assistenza psicologica".
"Davvero? E perché, allora?"
"Ho due domande da porle".
"Le risponderò, se posso. Ma prima, permetta che le faccia io una domanda. Cosa sa, lei, dell'Unione?"
"Poco, in realtà. So che dapprima ci fu la Rivoluzione d'Ottobre, in Russia, nel 1917. Poi, tra il '18 e il '20, il capitalismo fu abbattuto in Germania, in Ungheria e in Italia. In rapida successione, tutte le colonie europee in Asia e in Africa conquistarono l'indipendenza. L'India nel 1925, la Cina nel '27, e così via. Poco dopo fu la volta dell'Algeria e del Marocco, e a quel punto la rivoluzione scoppiò anche in Francia e in Spagna. Alla fine degli anni '30, tutta l'Europa continentale era socialista.
Frattanto, il crollo di Wall Street nel 1929 aveva gettato l'America nella crisi più nera. Le elezioni presidenziali del 1940 furono vinte da Charles Lindbergh, un fanatico antisemita che instaurò negli U.S.A. una dittatura razzista, appoggiata dal grande capitale. Presto quel regime si circondò di una serie di stati-satellite che coprivano tutta l'America del Sud e del Nord.
Negli anni '80, quelle dittature iniziarono ad implodere, dapprima in America Latina e poi in Canada. Quando nel 1989 cadde il Muro di Tijuana, finalmente il capitalismo crollò negli stessi Stati Uniti. Da allora, secondo la nostra propaganda, il Regno Unito di Gran Bretagna è rimasto l'ultimo baluardo del libero mercato e della civiltà, contro la barbarie socialista che ha travolto tutto il resto del globo. Questo è quanto".
"Bene - disse la dottoressa - a parte la faccenda del baluardo, il quadro storico è corretto. Non le sarà stato facile ricostruirlo..."
"No, infatti. Da noi, formalmente, la cultura è libera, e ognuno può leggere ciò che vuole. Si possono prendere in prestito, nelle poche biblioteche rimaste, anche testi di Marx o di Lenin, e persino di Fabio Volo. Non è vietato. Di fatto, però, ci sono materie che non conviene approfondire troppo. Se si viene a sapere che lei fa certe letture e che ha determinate idee (e si viene a sapere sempre), non speri di trovare lavoro tanto facilmente. Io me la sono cavata con i call center, solo perché le mie origini non sono troppo umili. Quando avevo vent'anni, i miei riuscirono persino a mandarmi all'università. Certo, oggi non potrei più frequentarla. Da allora le rette sono decuplicate."
"Ah, lei ha letto Fabio Volo? Complimenti. Da noi, molti lo considerano un autore troppo difficile".
"Sì, è molto rigoroso e denso, ma se si ha tempo da dedicargli, è un pensatore affascinante. Le consiglio la Critica del tempo unidimensionale, se non l'ha ancora letta. A me ha aperto la mente. In realtà, uno dei motivi per cui mi sono deciso ad espatriare è che anche studiare per conto proprio da noi è diventato impossibile. Troppo costoso, da quando il dizionario è stato privatizzato".
"Il dizionario?"
"Sì. Tutti i sostantivi che iniziano per vocale appartengono alla Mircosoft. Quelli che iniziano per consonante sono del gruppo Murdogh. Gli avverbi sono di Merdaset, e così via. Per leggere o per usare comunque le parole bisogna pagare il noleggio ai legittimi proprietari. Quando lei scrive una e-mail, oppure quando chatta o quando telefona, un sistema di contatori automatici calcola la cifra e l'addebita sul suo conto. Ottimo sistema, fra l'altro, per controllare i contenuti della comunicazione. Io, per esempio, ho fatto quindici giorni di carcere per uso illecito di marchio registrato, la volta che in una mia mail ho scritto che la Cocca Colla mi faceva schifo".
"Senta, Mr. Brasser. Quali sono i suoi progetti? Cosa intende fare, ora che è venuto qui da noi?"
"Primo, togliermi una curiosità che mi ha tormentato a lungo. Ed è la prima delle due domande che volevo farle, si ricorda?"
La dottoressa Dupont sbuffò. "Va bene. Spari".
"La domanda è: perché non ci avete invaso? Come avete potuto lasciarci a mollo in quella fogna?"
Anne si appoggiò sullo schienale della sedia. "Beh, alcuni partiti in seno all'Internazionale erano per dichiarare guerra. Ma infine prevalse l'idea che il socialismo non può essere imposto con i carri armati. Se ci avessero attaccato, ci saremmo difesi. Per fortuna non accadde. Oggi, poi, molti sostengono che una pluralità di sistemi sociali diversi non è necessariamente un male. In India, in Giappone e in Sud America, dove la transizione al comunismo è molto avanzata, stanno già smantellando le strutture dello Stato, per sostituirle con vari tipi di organizzazione non statuale. In Europa e in Africa ci troviamo ancora nella fase socialista, in vari stadi di sviluppo a seconda dei territori. Forse è bene che ci siano delle zone dove ancora vige il capitalismo."
"Sarà un bene per voi, che ci osservate dall'esterno come se fossimo allo zoo! Ma per noi che siamo in gabbia è un altro discorso".
"Lei ora non è più in gabbia. Comunque, mi sembra che il suo atteggiamento nei confronti del suo paese d'origine sia un po' troppo negativo, non crede?"
"Mi dica lei cosa ci vede di bello, in quel letamaio", ribatté Brasser.
"Beh, che so... Avete una scena musicale molto vivace. Un sacco di gruppi pop, rock, punk, post-punk... Wim Wenders ci ha fatto anche un film. Poi, comunque, il vostro sistema ha ancora una base di consenso popolare".
"Si riferisce a West End London Social Club, vero? Quel film mi dà la nausea! Le televisioni del regime lo replicano senza tregua. L'unico film d'autore trasmesso in prima serata, e senza interruzioni pubblicitarie."
"Ecco, ad esempio - lo interruppe la dottoressa - Perché lei parla di televisioni di regime? Da voi ci sono sei o sette canali, se non sbaglio, tutti privati e in concorrenza fra loro..."
"... e trasmettono tutti le stesse schifezze. Non si distinguono l'uno dall'altro. Anne, lei non ha capito: da noi l'economia è allo sfascio, la società è in piena decadenza, la cultura è morta e sepolta. L'unica attività che va a gonfie vele è la manipolazione del consenso per mezzo dei mass-media. Quella è l'unica industria che non conosce crisi!"
"Non volevo farla arrabbiare. Si calmi. Lei ora è al sicuro. Andrà tutto bene. Respiri profondamente, e mi faccia la seconda domanda che voleva pormi".
"Mi scusi. La domanda è questa. Lei è libera stasera? Ho letto sul giornale che in un cinema d'essai a Dunkerque proiettano L'Atalante di Jean Vigo. E' una vita che desidero vedere quel film, e mi chiedevo se... lei volesse venire con me a vederlo, ecco."


Pubblicato su Evulon in due puntate: la prima il 7 gennaio 2011 qui, e la seconda il 12 gennaio 2011, qui.
          La rivoluzione russa        
La mattina del 20 settembre 1871, il Maestro Franz Liszt si esercitava al pianoforte nello studio della sua sontuosa magione di campagna vicino Budapest, quando fu interrotto da un confuso e concitato vociare proveniente dal portone d'ingresso.

"Che succede, Pierre?" chiese mentre raggiungeva il suo maggiordomo, il quale, bloccando con il suo corpo l'accesso alla casa, stava palesemente cercando di convincere un ospite indesiderato ad andarsene.

Quando Liszt, avvicinatosi dietro le spalle del suo domestico, poté scorgere l'aspetto dell'intruso (un uomo sui sessant'anni, calvo, barbuto, che sembrava assai malmesso, ma parlava un francese forbito con marcato accento parigino), quest'ultimo troncò subito, lasciando una frase a metà, il suo litigio con Pierre e, volgendo speranzoso lo sguardo al padrone di casa, così lo apostrofò:

"Maestro Liszt! Maestro! Vi prego, degnatevi di concedere udienza ad un vostro grande ammiratore, giunto or ora dalla Francia solo per avere l'inestimabile onore di fare la Vostra conoscenza!"

"Padrone!" diceva intanto il maggiordomo, "lasciate che cacci via a calci nel sedere questo vagabondo che pretende di farsi ricevere da Voi! E' inaudito! Come se qualsiasi pitocco potesse..."

"Va bene, Pierre, lascia pure entrare Monsieur... di grazia, come vi chiamate?"

Il viso dello strano ospite si rasserenò. "Mi chiamo Eugène Pottier. Da Parigi. Poeta. Per servirvi. Sapevo che avreste... oh, grazie, mille grazie, Maestro!"

"Potete chiamarmi semplicemente Padre. Come forse saprete, non sono che un umile servitore di Santa Romana Chiesa... Ma accomodatevi nel mio studio, ve ne prego, e raccontatemi di voi..." diceva Liszt mentre accompagnava il suo ammiratore lungo il corridoio. "Venite da Parigi, avete detto?", qui il musicista scoccò uno sguardo sospettoso sul suo interlocutore. "E dove siete diretto, se posso..."

Mentre Liszt tornava a sedersi al suo pianoforte, Pottier si accomodò su un'ampia poltrona disposta in modo da fronteggiare il lato destro dello strumento. Come in una sala da concerto, pensò Pottier un po' a disagio. "Maestro, cioè scusatemi, Padre. Avete già capito. Sono un combattente della Comune. Sono in esilio, ramingo per l'Europa, da ormai quattro mesi. Ma non voglio annoiarvi con il racconto delle mie tribolazioni. Sono venuto qui, attratto dalla vostra fama di grande artista e di uomo già attento alla questione sociale, perché ho un testo, da me composto, che vorrei chiedervi di porre in musica".

Ci furono alcuni secondi di silenzio, durante i quali le palpebre di Liszt si aprirono e si chiusero spasmodicamente per una ventina di volte. "Monsieur Pottier... vi rendete conto, spero, del rischio a cui state esponendo voi stesso e me. Mi è difficile comprendere come siate potuto giungere fin qui dalla Francia. Ma, che la vostra sia stata fortuna o incoscienza, sappiate che la polizia asburgica non è affatto indulgente con quelli come voi, né con chi dà loro rifugio."

Pottier si raddrizzò sulla poltrona. "Né fortuna, né incoscienza, Monsieur Liszt. Siamo stati sconfitti, è vero. Ma abbiamo compagni ovunque, pronti a dare il loro silenzioso contributo alla Causa. E' grazie alla loro solidarietà che sono riuscito a sopravvivere e ad arrivare a voi. La musica che porto con me" - a questo punto Pottier tirò fuori da una tasca della giacca un fascicolo spiegazzato, ingiallito e sgualcito, e lo tese a Liszt - "mi induce a confidare anche nella vostra solidarietà".

Sempre più stupito, ma senza offuscare la politezza dei suoi modi da gentiluomo, il musicista prese l'opuscolo che lo strano visitatore gli porgeva. Era uno spartito a stampa che recava sopra il pentagramma il titolo Lyon e il motto: Vivre en travaillant, ou mourir en combattant. Che si potrebbe tradurre, a un dipresso: Vivere del proprio lavoro, o morire combattendo.

"Dove l'avete trovata?" chiese subito Liszt. "Questa composizione non fa più parte della raccolta delle mie opere. Non viene più ristampata da..."

"Dal 1837" lo interruppe Pottier. "Me la regalò mio padre, il giorno del mio ventunesimo compleanno. Mi spiegò che un grande musicista l'aveva composta per celebrare il ricordo della rivolta degli operai disoccupati di Lione. Mi disse: se vuoi davvero fare l'artista, prendi esempio, figlio mio, e ricordati sempre da quale parte della barricata devi stare!"

Liszt guardò fisso il suo ospite, che ricambiava lo sguardo con fermezza. Poi sospirò. "Monsieur Pottier, i tempi sono cambiati. Persino quella testa calda del mio amico Wagner se n'è reso conto, ed è passato (come direste voi) dall'altra parte della barricata. L'epoca delle rivoluzioni è finita. Per sempre. Anche voialtri, col vostro folle tentativo laggiù in Francia, lo avete dimostrato. Datemi retta: la vostra cosiddetta questione sociale non ha alcuna soluzione. Non su questa terra, almeno. La sola cosa che posso fare per voi è scrivere due righe al priore del convento francescano che si trova a una lega da qui. E' mio amico. Vi darà ricetto e ospitalità, fino al giorno in cui Dio, nella Sua infinita misericordia, illuminerà la vostra mente, come già fece con la mia. Allora anche voi comprenderete, e vi rassegnerete alla Sua volontà".

Pottier rimase in silenzio. Poi fece per rimettere in tasca l'altro foglio di carta che ne aveva tratto poco prima e che stava per consegnare al grande musicista. Ma gli tremava la mano e, senza che lui se ne accorgesse, il foglio cadde per terra. Infine disse: "Bene, Monsieur Liszt. Vi chiedo scusa per l'incomodo e per il rischio che vi ho fatto correre. Mi ero sbagliato sul vostro conto. Ora non vi importunerò ulteriormente e, col vostro permesso, riprenderò il mio viaggio."

Stava per uscire senz'altro dallo studio di Liszt, ma quest'ultimo lo richiamo: "Aspettate, Monsieur Pottier. Non fatemi il torto di rifiutare la mia ospitalità, almeno sino a domattina... Tra poco sarà servita la colazione. Frattanto, accomodatevi, e siate così gentile da attendere che abbia finito i miei esercizi. Fra l'altro, suono meglio quando ho un pubblico ad ascoltarmi. Posso chiedervi inoltre, nuovamente, qual è la meta del vostro viaggio?"

Eugène Pottier si risedette. "Credo che andrò in Russia. C'è molto lavoro da fare, laggiù".

"In Russia!?" esclamò Liszt. Stava per aggiungere: voi siete pazzo, ma si trattenne. "Voi non sapete quel che dite! Ogni giorno, ogni giorno lo Zar incarcera, spedisce in Siberia o manda sul patibolo gente come voi! Ecco, guardate" - Liszt prese in fretta dallo scrittoio una rivista - "guardate questo giornale che mi è arrivato ieri da San Pietroburgo. Sapete leggere il cirillico? Ecco l'elenco dei terroristi che sono stati impiccati il mese scorso per avere cospirato contro la monarchia: Rodion Raskolnikov, Nikolaj Stavrogin, Aleksandr Uljanov... Va avanti per un'intera pagina! E voi volete andare in Russia?"

Pottier ribatté con calma: "Terroristi, avete detto? Uhm... no, non è questa la strada. Noi vinceremo, ma seguendo un altro cammino."

"Ah, sì? E quale, se mi è concesso chiederlo?

"Non lo so. Forse la strada non c'è. Ma so che c'è da camminare".

Liszt sospirò. Guardò Pottier. Poi guardò il giornale russo. Poi guardò il suo pianoforte. Infine ci si sedette e, senza dire niente, attaccò a suonarlo.

Suonava già da un quarto d'ora, e le tortuose armonie della Sonata in si minore si dipanavano con sicurezza sotto le sue dita, come un filo di lana in un labirinto, quando Liszt sentì un suono inconfondibile provenire dalla poltrona del poeta. Liszt portò a termine l'esecuzione della Sonata, poi si alzò dal pianoforte e risistemò delicatamente il poggiatesta imbottito sotto la tempia di Pottier. Quest'ultimo smise di russare, ma non si svegliò. Poi il musicista si chinò a raccogliere il foglio di carta che era caduto dalla tasca di Pottier. Si risedé al pianoforte e lo lesse. Era scritto in versi e iniziava così:

"Debout, les damnés de la terre
Debout, les forçats de la faim!
La raison tonne en son cratère
C'est l'éruption de la fin.
Du passé faisons table rase.
Foules, esclaves, debout, debout!
Le monde va changer de base.
Nous ne sommes rien, soyons tout!"


Il poema andava avanti su questo tono per un'altra decina di strofe. Liszt lo lesse con attenzione. Poi sbuffò forte col naso, mise il foglio da parte e si rimise al piano. Attaccò a suonare una sua composizione che s'intitolava Funérailles. Si interruppe dopo poche battute. Poi, per la prima volta dopo decenni, dalla cassa armonica rintoccarono le possenti note iniziali di Lyon. Ma anche questa esecuzione fu lasciata a metà.

Liszt si prese la faccia tra le mani. Cosa gli stava succedendo?

Infine il musicista sembrò distendersi. Riprese in mano il foglio con la poesia di Pottier e lo pose sul leggìo. Iniziò ad improvvisare. Si udì una melodia piuttosto bella, allo stesso tempo vivace e solenne, in ritmo giambico. (Molto tempo dopo, qualcuno l'avrebbe descritta come una via di mezzo fra Oh, my darling Clementine e La cucaracha).

Subito iniziò a variare. Mentre un ritmo lento, profondo e pauroso rombava nella parte sinistra della tastiera, la melodia si trasformò in un canto popolare slavo che sembrava provenire dall'inizio dei tempi.
Poi il ritmo si fece più veloce, incalzante e sincopato, come di tamburi africani, mentre la melodia, stranamente deformata in semitoni, diede l'allucinante impressione di provenire non più da un pianoforte, ma da una tromba con sordina, o da qualche altro strano strumento a fiato non ancora inventato.

Poi ancora la stessa melodia, resa esile, sottile e tintinnante, si stagliò nelle zone alte della tastiera, sullo sfondo di colpi molto distanziati, come di un gong, che provenivano dalla mano sinistra. Senza soluzione di continuità, questo tintinnio si tramutò nel canto di un muezzin. Poi fu come se, prodigiosamente, tutte queste versioni della stessa identica melodia risuonassero insieme. Pottier, che nel frattempo si era svegliato, non credeva ai propri occhi. Le mani di Liszt si muovevano ad una velocità sovrumana, producendo una fittissima gragnuola di note di ogni altezza, che scemava e poi di nuovo s'intensificava, fino a scoppiare in un'onda di energia di terrificante violenza. Infine, mentre le ultime risonanze dell'esplosione ancora si dissolvevano, la melodia iniziale ritornò piano, semplice ed infantile, lenta, simile ad un carillon che suonasse una ninna-nanna.

La straordinaria esibizione di Liszt aveva intanto richiamato tutta la sua servitù, che si era raccolta ad ascoltare in un piccolo drappello dietro la porta dello studio: erano anni che non lo sentivano suonare a quel modo. Fra di loro, c'era una famigliola composta da una giovane coppia con la loro bambina di tre anni.

"Hai sentito, Sandor?" disse la moglie. "Tu dicevi che il vecchio si era ormai completamente rincitrullito..."

"Sì, Hannah, te lo confermo: il vecchio si è totalmente rimbecillito. Ma per sua fortuna, le mani ce le ha ancora buone. Vieni, Milena!" prese in braccio la sua figlioletta, "ascolta. Un giorno anche tu dovrai suonare così".

Pubblicato il 7 ottobre 2010, qui: http://www.evulon.net/news.php?extend.3549


          'Central banks’ seriously misguided attempts to defeat routine consumer price deflation is what fuels the destructive asset bubbles that eventually collapse.' (no replies)        
'..America's pension crisis is a big part of the $400 trillion pension time bomb threatening the global economy and it is deflationary and bond friendly.'

- Leo Kolivakis, America's Corporate Pension Disaster? August 4, 2017


'In order for the Maestro to be right, US inflation expectations have to pick up in a significant way. This won't happen and to understand why, read Gary Shilling's recent comment on three things central bankers don't get about wages.'

- Leo Kolivakis, Is the Maestro Wrong on Bonds? August 2, 2017


'Very recent data confirms slumping household saving ratios in both the US and UK. This was last seen in 2007, just before the bursting debt bubble blew the global economy and financial system to smithereens. The Fed and BoE should surely hang their heads in shame having presided over yet another impending disaster. Why will politicians and the people tolerate this incompetence? Indeed they won’t.'

- Albert (Shades of 2008: UK and US Savings Rate Plunges, Debt Comes Full Circle, August 3, 2017)


'It’s no mystery why central bankers are mystified: Collectively, they are economically illiterate fools engaged in Keynesian and Monetarist group think.

..

On deck is another round of destructive asset price deflation, brought about by Central banks who cannot see the obvious.'

- Mike “Mish” Shedlock, Central Banks Puzzled as Global Inflation Hits Lowest Level Since 2009: Solving the Puzzle, August 3, 2017


'..history and logic both show that concerns over consumer price deflation are seriously misplaced.

Worse yet, in their attempts to fight routine consumer price deflation, central bankers create very destructive asset bubbles that eventually collapse, setting off what they should fear – asset bubble deflations following a buildup of bank credit on inflated assets.'

- Mike “Mish” Shedlock, Historical Perspective on CPI Deflations: How Damaging are They? March 30, 2015


'BIS Deflation Study

The BIS did a historical study and found routine deflation was not any problem at all.

“Deflation may actually boost output. Lower prices increase real incomes and wealth. And they may also make export goods more competitive,” stated the study.

It’s asset bubble deflation that is damaging. When asset bubbles burst, debt deflation results.

Central banks’ seriously misguided attempts to defeat routine consumer price deflation is what fuels the destructive asset bubbles that eventually collapse.'

- Mike “Mish” Shedlock, How Twisted Minds Function, August 2, 2017


Context

'..If you can’t see this next crisis coming, you’re not paying the right kind of attention .. Financial politicians..'

'..the Next 30 Years: “Everything is Deflationary”..'

'..a 30-year bear market..'

          '..If you can’t see this next crisis coming, you’re not paying the right kind of attention .. Financial politicians..' (no replies)        
'..If you can’t see this next crisis coming, you’re not paying the right kind of attention..'

'This Fed has already engineered the next crisis, just as Greenspan kept rates too low for too long, ignored his regulatory responsibility, and engineered the housing bubble and subprime crisis. If you can’t see this next crisis coming, you’re not paying the right kind of attention. The Trump Fed is going to have to deal with that crisis, but we still have many questions as to what a Trump Fed will actually look like or do.'

John Mauldin (Source, Jun 25, 2017)


'..Their empathy circuits get turned off.'

'Powerful people everywhere routinely make decisions that hurt others. We see it in central bankers, politicians, corporate CEOs, religious groups, universities – any large organization. The old saying is right: Power really does corrupt. And corruption is a barrier to sustainable economic growth. This is more than a political problem; it has a serious economic impact.

Recent psychological research suggests that powerful people behave remarkably like traumatic brain injury victims. Controlled experiments show that, given power over others, people often become impulsive and less sensitive to risk. Most important, test subjects often lose empathy, that is, the ability to understand and share the feelings of others.

..

Powerful people also lose a capacity called “mirroring.” When we observe other people doing something, our brains react as if we were doing the same thing. It’s why, when you watch a sporting event, you may unconsciously mimic a golf swing or the referee’s hand signals. Some portion of your brain thinks you are really there. But when researchers prime test subjects with powerful feelings, their mirroring capacity decreases.

You can see why this is a problem. The Protected-class members of the Federal Open Market Committee must feel quite powerful when they gather in that fancy room to make policy decisions. It’s no wonder they forget how their decisions will affect regular working-class people: Their empathy circuits get turned off.'

- Patrick Watson, The Wedge Goes Deeper, June 30, 2017


'..I now feel that it's highly likely we will face a major financial crisis, if not later this year, then by the end of 2018 at the latest..'

'Re-entering the news flow was a jolt, and not in a good way. Looking with fresh eyes at the economic numbers and central bankers’ statements convinced me that we will soon be in deep trouble. I now feel that it's highly likely we will face a major financial crisis, if not later this year, then by the end of 2018 at the latest. Just a few months ago, I thought we could avoid a crisis and muddle through. Now I think we’re past that point. The key decision-makers have (1) done nothing, (2) done the wrong thing, or (3) done the right thing too late.

Having realized this, I’m adjusting my research efforts. I believe a major crisis is coming. The questions now are, how severe will it be, and how will we get through it? With the election of President Trump and a Republican Congress, your naïve analyst was hopeful that we would get significant tax reform, in addition to reform of a healthcare system that is simply devastating to so many people and small businesses. I thought maybe we’d see this administration cutting through some bureaucratic red tape quickly. With such reforms in mind I was hopeful we could avoid a recession even if a crisis developed in China or Europe.

..

One news item I didn’t miss on St. Thomas – and rather wish I had – was Janet Yellen’s reassurance regarding the likelihood of another financial crisis. Here is the full quote.

Would I say there will never, ever be another financial crisis? You know probably that would be going too far, but I do think we’re much safer, and I hope that it will not be in our lifetimes and I don’t believe it will be. [emphasis added]

I disagree with almost every word in those two sentences, but my belief is less important than Chair Yellen’s. If she really believes this, then she is oblivious to major instabilities that still riddle the financial system. That’s not good.

..

Financial politicians (which is what central bankers really are) have a long history of saying the wrong things at the wrong time. Far worse, they simply fail to tell the truth. Former Eurogroup leader Jean-Claude Juncker admitted as much: “When it becomes serious, you have to lie,” he said in the throes of Europe’s 2011 debt crisis.'

- John Mauldin, Prepare for Turbulence, July 9, 2017


'..Market distortions – including valuations, deeply embedded complacency, and Trillions of perceived safe securities – have become only further detached from reality. And the longer all this unstable finance flows freely into the real economy, the deeper the structural maladjustment.'

'This week marks the five-year anniversary of Draghi’s “whatever it takes.” I remember the summer of 2012 as if it were yesterday. From the Bubble analysis perspective, it was a Critical Juncture – for financial markets and risk perceptions, for policy and for the global economy. Italian 10-year yields hit 6.60% on July 24, 2012. On that same day, Spain saw yields surge to 7.62%. Italian banks were in freefall, while European bank stocks (STOXX600) were rapidly approaching 2009 lows. Having risen above 55 in 2011, Deutsche Bank traded at 23.23 on July 25, 2012.

It was my view at the time that the “European” crisis posed a clear and immediate threat to the global financial system. A crisis of confidence in Italian debt (and Spanish and “periphery” debt) risked a crisis of confidence in European banks – and a loss of confidence in European finance risked dismantling the euro monetary regime.

Derivatives markets were in the crosshairs back in 2012. A crisis of confidence in European debt and the euro would surely have tested the derivatives marketplace to the limits. Moreover, with the big European banks having evolved into dominant players in derivatives trading (taking share from U.S. counterparts after the mortgage crisis), counter-party issues were at the brink of becoming a serious global market problem. It’s as well worth mentioning that European banks were major providers of finance for emerging markets.

From the global government finance Bubble perspective, Draghi’s “whatever it takes” was a seminal development. The Bernanke Fed employed QE measures during the 2008 financial crisis to accommodate deleveraging and stabilize dislocated markets. Mario Draghi leapfrogged (helicopter) Bernanke, turning to open-ended QE and other extreme measures to preserve euro monetary integration. No longer would QE be viewed as a temporary crisis management tool. And just completely disregard traditional monetary axiom that central banks should operate as lender of last resort in the event of temporary illiquidity – but must avoid propping up the insolvent. “Whatever it takes” advocates covert bailouts for whomever and whatever a small group of central bankers chooses – illiquid, insolvent, irredeemable or otherwise. Now five years after the first utterance of “whatever it takes,” the Draghi ECB is still pumping out enormous amounts of “money” on a monthly basis (buying sovereigns and corporates) with rates near zero.

..

Thinking back five years, U.S. markets at the time were incredibly complacent. The risk of crisis in Europe was downplayed: Policymakers had it all under control. Sometime later, the Financial Times - in a fascinating behind-the-scenes exposé - confirmed the gravity of the situation and how frazzled European leaders were at the brink of losing control. Yet central bankers, once again, saved the day – further solidifying their superhero status.

I’m convinced five years of “whatever it takes” took the global government finance Bubble deeper into perilous uncharted territory. Certainly, markets are more complacent than ever, believing central bankers are fully committed to prolonging indefinitely the securities bull market. Meanwhile, leverage, speculative excess and trend-following flows have had an additional five years to accumulate. Market distortions – including valuations, deeply embedded complacency, and Trillions of perceived safe securities – have become only further detached from reality. And the longer all this unstable finance flows freely into the real economy, the deeper the structural maladjustment.'

- Doug Noland, Five Years of Whatever It Takes, July 29, 2017


'..This whole episode is likely to end so badly that future children will learn about it in school and shake their heads in wonder at the rank stupidity of it all, just like many of us did when we learned about the Dutch Tulip mania.'

'While I've written about numerous valuation measures over time, the most reliable ones share a common feature: they focus on identifying "sufficient statistics" for the very, very long-term stream of cash flows that stocks can be expected to deliver into the hands of investors over time. On that front, revenues are typically more robust "sufficient statistics" than current or year-ahead earnings. See Exhaustion Gaps and the Fear of Missing Out for a table showing the relative reliability of a variety of measures. In April 2007, I estimated that an appropriate valuation for the S&P 500 stood about 850, roughly -40% lower than prevailing levels. By the October peak, the prospective market loss to normal valuation had increased to about -46%. As it happened, the subsequent collapse of the housing bubble took the S&P 500 about -55% lower. In late-October 2008, as the market plunge crossed below historically reliable valuation norms, I observed that the S&P 500 had become undervalued on our measures.

Again attempting to “stimulate” the economy from the recession that followed, the Federal Reserve cut short-term interest rates to zero in recent years, provoking yet another episode of yield-seeking speculation, where yield-starved investors created demand for virtually every class of securities, in the hope of achieving returns in excess of zero. Meanwhile, Wall Street, suffering from what J.K. Galbraith once called the “extreme brevity of the financial memory,” convinced itself yet again that the whole episode was built on something more solid than quotes on a screen and blotches of ink on paper..

..

..greater real economic activity was never the likely outcome of all this quantitative easing (indeed, one can show that the path of the economy since the crisis has not been materially different than what one could have projected using wholly non-monetary variables). Rather, Ben Bernanke, in his self-appointed role as Mad Hatter, was convinced that offensively hypervalued financial markets - that encourage the speculative misallocation of capital, imply dismal expected future returns, and create temporary paper profits that ultimately collapse - somehow represent a greater and more desirable form of “wealth” compared with reasonably-valued financial markets that offer attractive expected returns and help to soundly allocate capital. Believing that wealth is embodied by the price of a security rather than its future stream of cash flows, QE has created a world of hypervaluation, zero prospective future returns, and massive downside risks across nearly every conventional asset class.

And so, the Fed created such an enormous pool of zero interest bank reserves that investors would feel pressure to chase stocks, junk debt, anything to get rid of these yield-free hot potatoes. That didn’t stimulate more real, productive investment; it just created more investors who were frustrated with zero returns, because someone had to hold that base money, and in aggregate, all of them had to hold over $4 trillion of the stuff at every moment in time.

When you look objectively at what the Fed actually did, should be obvious how its actions encouraged this bubble. Every time someone would get rid of zero-interest base money by buying a riskier security, the seller would get the base money, and the cycle would continue until every asset was priced to deliver future returns near zero. We’re now at the point where junk yields are among the lowest in history, stock market valuations are so extreme that we estimate zero or negative S&P 500 average annual nominal total returns over the coming 10-12 year horizon, and our estimate of 12-year prospective total returns on a conventional mix of 60% stocks, 30% Treasury bonds, and 10% Treasury bills has never been lower (about 1% annually here). This whole episode is likely to end so badly that future children will learn about it in school and shake their heads in wonder at the rank stupidity of it all, just like many of us did when we learned about the Dutch Tulip mania.

Examine all risk exposures, consider your investment horizon and risk-tolerance carefully, commit to the flexibility toward greater market exposure at points where a material retreat in valuations is joined by early improvement in market action (even if the news happens to be very negative at that point), fasten your protective gear, and expect a little bit of whiplash. Remember that the “catalysts” often become evident after prices move, not before. The completion of this market cycle may or may not be immediate, but with the median stock at easily the most extreme price/revenue ratio in history, and a run-of-the-mill outcome now being market loss on the order of -60%, the contrast between recent stability and likely future volatility could hardly be more striking.'

- John P. Hussman, Ph.D., Hot Potatoes and Dutch Tulips, July 31, 2017


Context

(2017) - '..a deeply systemic debt crisis akin to the aftermath of 1929 .. the stage has now been set..'

(Banking Reform - Monetary Reform) - '..debt is our biggest security threat..'

'..the Next 30 Years: “Everything is Deflationary”..'

          (2017) - '..a deeply systemic debt crisis akin to the aftermath of 1929 .. the stage has now been set..' (no replies)        
'..But after a decade of unprecedented expansion of government debt and central bank Credit, the stage has now been set for a more systemic 1929-like financial dislocation.'

'June 27 – Reuters (William Schomberg, Marc Jones, Jason Lange and Lindsay Dunsmuir): “U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said on Tuesday that she does not believe that there will be another financial crisis for at least as long as she lives, thanks largely to reforms of the banking system since the 2007-09 crash. ‘Would I say there will never, ever be another financial crisis?’ Yellen said… ‘You know probably that would be going too far but I do think we're much safer and I hope that it will not be in our lifetimes and I don't believe it will be,’ she said.”

While headlines somewhat paraphrased Yellen’s actual comment, “We Will not see Another Crisis in Our Lifetime” is reminiscent of Irving Fisher’s “permanent plateau” just weeks before the great crash of 1929. While on the subject, I never bought into the popular comparison between 2008 and 1929 – and the related notion of 2008 as “the 100-year flood”. The 2008/09 crisis was for the most part a private debt crisis associated with the bursting of a Bubble in mortgage Credit – not dissimilar to previous serial global crises, only larger and somewhat more systemic. It was not, however, a deeply systemic debt crisis akin to the aftermath of 1929, which was characterized by a crisis of confidence in the banking system, the markets and finance more generally, along with a loss of faith in government policy and institutions. But after a decade of unprecedented expansion of government debt and central bank Credit, the stage has now been set for a more systemic 1929-like financial dislocation.

As such, it’s ironic that the Fed has branded the banking system cured and so well capitalized that bankers can now boost dividends, buybacks and, presumably, risk-taking. As conventional central bank thinking goes, a well-capitalized banking system provides a powerful buffer for thwarting the winds of financial crisis. Chair Yellen, apparently, surveys current bank capital levels and extrapolates to systemic stability. Yet the next crisis lurks not with the banks but within the securities and derivatives markets: too much leverage and too much “money” employed in trend-following trading strategies. Too much hedging, speculating and leveraging in derivatives. Market misperceptions and distortions on an epic scale.

Compared to 2008, the leveraged speculating community and the ETF complex are significantly larger and potentially perilous. The derivatives markets are these days acutely more vulnerable to liquidity issues and dislocation. Never have global markets been so dominated by trend-following strategies. It’s a serious issue that asset market performance – stocks, bond, corporate Credit, EM, real estate, etc. – have all become so tightly correlated. There are huge vulnerabilities associated with various markets having become so highly synchronized on a global basis. And in the grand scheme of grossly inflated global securities, asset and derivatives markets, the scope of available bank capital is trivial.

I realize that, at this late stage of the great bull market, such a question sounds hopelessly disconnected. Yet, when markets reverse sharply lower and The Crowd suddenly moves to de-risk, who is left to take the other side of what has become One Gargantuan “Trade”? We’re all familiar with the pat response: “Central banks. They’ll have no choice.” Okay, but I’m more interested in the timing and circumstances.

Central bankers are now signaling their desire to proceed with normalization, along with noting concerns for elevated asset prices. As such, I suspect they will be somewhat more circumspect going forward when it comes to backstopping the markets - than, say, back in 2013 with Bernanke’s “flash crash” or with the China scare of early-2016. Perhaps this might help to explain why the VIX spiked above 15 during Thursday afternoon trading. Even corporate debt markets showed a flash of vulnerability this week.'

- Doug Noland, Weekly Commentary: The Road to Normalization, July 1, 2017


Context (Banking Reform - English/Dutch) '..a truly stable financial and monetary system for the twenty-first century..'

'Unsound Finance gets to the heart of the issue.'

'..Like monetarists, Keynes held no capital theory .. the role time plays..' - Jesús Huerta de Soto

'..Loose financial conditions and record debt issuance..'


'..investors’ fear of missing out is looking increasingly desperate..'

'..a giant passive 'beta' bubble .. This may be the Mother of all beta bubbles..'

'..The same combination prevailed at the 1929, 1972, 1987, 2000, and 2007 market peaks..'


(Banking Reform - Monetary Reform) - '..debt is our biggest security threat..'

          '..FORGET fuel-powered jet engines .. looking into hybrid planes .. plasma engine..' (no replies)        
'FORGET fuel-powered jet engines. We’re on the verge of having aircraft that can fly from the ground up to the edge of space using air and electricity alone.

..

Berkant Göksel at the Technical University of Berlin and his team now want to fit plasma engines to planes. “We want to develop a system that can operate above an altitude of 30 kilometres where standard jet engines cannot go,” he says. These could even take passengers to the edge of the atmosphere and beyond.

..

Göksel is hoping for a breakthrough in compact fusion reactors to power his system..

In the meantime, he is looking into hybrid planes, in which his plasma engine would be combined with pulse detonation combustion engines or rockets to save on fuel.'

- Sandrine Ceurstemont, Plasma jet engines that could take you from the ground to space, May 17, 2017


Context

(Fusion Power) - LPP Focus Fusion 1; '..FF-1 results are right now far ahead..'

(The Electric Universe) - SAFIRE as Astrophysical Laboratory | EU2016

'Open source is now mainstream..'


The New Fusion Race - Part 4 - Fusion Race: Who is Ahead, April 6, 2017

          '..committed to 100 percent clean energy by the year 2050.' (no replies)        
'Leaders from the City of Portland and Multnomah County have committed to 100 percent clean energy by the year 2050.

In an announcement earlier this week, authorities said that their goal was to meet the community's electricity needs with renewables by the year 2035 and to move all remaining energy sources to renewable ones by 2050.

..

Multnomah County is the most populous county in Oregon. Its Chair, Deborah Kafoury, welcomed the news. "This is a pledge to our children's future,'' she said. "100 percent renewables means a future with cleaner air, a stable climate and more jobs and economic opportunity.''

Portland is among a number of U.S. cities looking to embrace renewables. Over the weekend Chicago's Mayor, Rahm Emanuel, announced that city buildings there were to be powered by 100 percent renewable energy by 2025.'

- Anmar Frangoul, Portland commits to 100 percent renewable energy by 2050, April 12, 2017


Context

(Fusion Power) - LPP Focus Fusion 1; '..FF-1 results are right now far ahead..'

(Fusion Power) - '..LPP has so far has two out of the three necessary ingredients for successful breakeven..'

'..to Ban Internal Combustion Engines by 2030'


The nuclear retreat - '..the global transition to sustainable 100 percent renewable energy.' - '..in Europe by 2050.'

(To Heal) - '..the forces and forms of nature -- clouds, mountains, waves -- in cities of the future.'

(In The Electric Universe) Open Source Infrastructure, beginning of the Enterprise Nervous System (ENS)

          Vision of Humanity - Global Peace (no replies)        
'Economists on Peace aims to stimulate global discussion and shared learning on economic aspects of peace and conflict leading to appropriate action for peace, security and the world economy.'

- An Economists for Peace and Security editorial collaboration


'The need to understand what works in peacebuilding, how to measure its impact and cost-effectiveness is essential to long-term efforts to prevent violence and build peace. Yet, there is much we collectively do not know about peacebuilding, what works and doesn’t work, let alone what activities broadly define it. At a time when the international community’s resources to international development and aid are under strain due to tightened national budgets and stress from humanitarian action, the need to understand and invest in the most cost-effective ways to build long term peace is more crucial than ever.'

- Report: Measuring Peace Building Cost-Effectiveness


Context (Haptopraxeology) - '..We have lost three centuries as a result of ignoring our scholars!'

Global Peace Index

The Book of Peace

Four Ways Peace Research Made an Impact in Nuevo León, Mexico


Gold, Peace, and Prosperity

In The Electric Universe a Future of Peace and Love

'..tell your boss you think the company has a love deficit.' - Hamel


(To Heal)(Reinventing Organizations) - '..news about what happening in the space of organizations going Teal.'

(In The Electric Universe) Open Source Infrastructure, beginning of the Enterprise Nervous System (ENS)

          '..the amount of leverage and excess that has accumulated in bond and Credit markets..' (no replies)        
'..the amount of leverage and excess that has accumulated in bond and Credit markets over the past eight years of extreme monetary stimulus.'

'The Fed is not blind. They monitor stock prices and corporate debt issuance; they see residential and commercial real estate market values. Years of ultra-low rates have inflated Bubbles throughout commercial real estate – anything providing a yield – in excess of those going into 2008. Upper-end residential prices are significantly stretched across the country, also surpassing 2007. They see Silicon Valley and a Tech Bubble 2.0, with myriad excesses that in many respects put 1999 to shame. I’ll assume that the Fed is concerned with the amount of leverage and excess that has accumulated in bond and Credit markets over the past eight years of extreme monetary stimulus.

..

The Fed collapsed fed funds from 6.50% in December 2000 to an extraordinarily low 1.75% by the end of 2001. In the face of an escalating corporate debt crisis, the Fed took the unusual step of cutting rates another 50 bps in November 2002. Alarmingly, corporate Credit was failing to respond to traditional monetary policy measures (despite being aggressively applied). Ford in particular faced severe funding issues, though the entire corporate debt market was confronting liquidity issues. Recall that the S&P500 dropped 23.4% in 2002. The small caps lost 21.6%. The Nasdaq 100 (NDX) sank 37.6%, falling to 795 (having collapsed from a March 2000 high of 4,816). No financial instability?

..

I revisit history in an attempt at distinguishing reality from misperceptions. Of course the Fed will generally dismiss the consequences of Bubbles. They’re not going to aggressively embark on reflationary policies while espousing the dangers of asset price and speculative Bubbles. Instead, they have painted the “housing Bubble” as some egregious debt mountain aberration. And paraphrasing Kashkari, since today’s stock market has nowhere as much debt as housing had in 2007, there’s little to worry about from a crisis and financial instability perspective.

Well, if only that were the case. Debt is a critical issue, and there’s a whole lot more of it than back in 2008. Yet when it comes to fragility and financial crises, market misperceptions and distortions play fundamental roles. And there’s a reason why each bursting Bubble and resulting policy-induced reflation ensures a more precarious Bubble: Not only does the amount of debt continue to inflate, each increasingly intrusive policy response elicits a greater distorting impact on market perceptions.

I doubt Fed governor Bernanke actually anticipated that the Fed would have to resort to “helicopter money” and the “government printing press” when he introduced such extreme measures in his 2002 speeches. Yet seeing that the Fed was willing to push its monetary experiment in such a radical direction played a momentous role in reversing the 2002 corporate debt crisis, in the process stoking the fledgling mortgage finance Bubble. And the Bernanke Fed surely thought at the time that doubling its balance sheet during the 2008/09 crisis was a one-time response to a once-in-a-lifetime financial dislocation. I’ll assume they were sincere with their 2011 “exit strategy,” yet only a few short years later they’d again double the size of their holdings.

..

Despite assertions to the contrary, the bursting of the “tech” Bubble unleashed significant financial instability. To orchestrate reflation, the Fed marshaled a major rate collapse, which worked to stoke already robust mortgage Credit growth. The collapse in telecom debt, an unwind of market-based speculative leverage and the rapid slowdown in corporate borrowings was over time more than offset by a rapid expansion in housing debt and the enormous growth in mortgage-related speculative leverage (MBS, ABS, derivatives).

..

I’ve never felt comfortable that Chinese authorities appreciate the types of risks that have been mounting beneath the surface of their massively expanding Credit system. Global markets seemed attentive a year ago, but have since been swept away by the notion of the all-powerful “China put” conjoining with the steadfast “Fed put.” These types of market perceptions create tremendous inherent fragility.'

- Doug Noland, Discussions on the Fed Put, March 25, 2017


'It’s now an all-too-familiar Bubble Dynamic. The greater the Bubble inflates, the more impervious it becomes to cautious “tightening” measures..'

'The problem today is that years of ultra-loose monetary conditions have ensured everyone is crowded on the same bullish side of the boat. Tipping the vessel at this point will be chaotic, and the Fed clearly doesn’t want to be the instigator. Meanwhile, timid little baby-step increases only ensure more problematic market Bubbles and general financial excess.

It’s now an all-too-familiar Bubble Dynamic. The greater the Bubble inflates, the more impervious it becomes to cautious “tightening” measures. And the longer the accommodative backdrop fuels only more precarious Bubble Dynamics, the more certain it becomes that central bankers will approach monetary tightening timidly. Yellen confirmed to the markets Wednesday that the Fed would remain timid – still focused on some theoretical “neutral rate” and seemingly oblivious to conspicuous financial market excess. The fixation remains on consumer prices that are running just a tad under its 2% target. Meanwhile, runaway securities market inflation is completely disregarded.'

- Doug Noland, Another Missed Opportunity, March 18, 2017


'..In terms of Credit Bubble momentum, it’s notable that Net Worth inflated over $2.0 TN in both Q3 and Q4.'

'The unprecedented amount of system-wide debt is so enormous that the annual percentage gains no longer appear as alarming. Non-Financial Debt expanded 4.7% in 2016, up from 2015’s 4.4%. Total Household Debt expanded 3.6%, with Total Business borrowings up 5.6%. Financial Sector borrowings expanded 2.9% last year, the strongest expansion since 2008.

Securities markets remain the centerpiece of this long reflationary cycle. Total (debt and equities) Securities jumped $1.50 TN during Q4 to a record $80.344 TN, with a one-year rise of $4.80 TN. As a percentage of GDP, Total Securities increased to 426% from the year ago 415%. For comparison, Total Securities peaked at $55.3 TN during Q3 2007, or 379% of GDP. At the previous Q1 2000 cycle peak, Total Securities had reached $36.0 TN, or 359% of GDP.

The Household Balance Sheet also rather conspicuously illuminates Bubble Dynamics. Household Assets surged $6.0 TN during 2016 to a record $107.91 TN ($9.74 TN 2-yr gain). This compares to the peak Q3 2007 level of $81.9 TN and $70.0 TN to end 2008. Q4 alone saw Household Assets inflate $2.192 TN, with Financial Assets up $1.589 TN and real estate gaining $557bn.

With Household Liabilities increasing $473bn over the past year, Household Net Worth (assets minus liabilities) inflated a notable $5.518 TN in 2016 to a record $92.805 TN. As a percentage of GDP, Net Worth rose to a record 492%. For comparison, Household Net Worth-to-GDP ended 1999 at 435% ($43.1 TN) and 2007 at 453% ($66.5 TN). Net Worth fell to a cycle low 378% of GDP ($54.4TN) in Q1 2009. In terms of Credit Bubble momentum, it’s notable that Net Worth inflated over $2.0 TN in both Q3 and Q4.

..

UBS analysts forecast (above) $3.3 TN of 2017 Chinese Total Social Financing (TSF). And with TSF excluding national government deficit spending, let’s add another $300bn and presume 2017 Chinese system Credit growth of around $3.6 TN. As such, it’s possible that China and the U.S. could combine for Credit growth approaching an Unparalleled $6.0 TN. There are, as well, indications of an uptick in lending in the euro zone, and Credit conditions for the most part remain loose throughout EM. Importantly, the inflationary biases that have gained momentum in asset and securities markets and, increasingly, in consumer prices and corporate profits provide a tailwind for Credit expansion.'

- Doug Noland, Unparalleled Credit and Global Yields, March 10, 2017


Context

'..the S&P 500 is now far more overvalued than in 2000, 2007, or indeed in any prior point in history..'

          'The WMO says that the "extreme and unusual" climate and weather trends have continued into 2017..' (no replies)        
'The WMO says that the "extreme and unusual" climate and weather trends have continued into 2017. At least three times this winter, the Arctic experienced the equivalent of a heatwave, as powerful Atlantic storms drove warm, moist air into the region.

Changes in the Arctic and the melting of sea-ice are also leading to a shift in atmospheric circulation patterns impacting other parts of the world. This is causing unusual heat in some areas - In the US, over 11,000 warm temperature records were broken in early 2017.

"Even without a strong El Niño in 2017, we are seeing other remarkable changes across the planet that are challenging the limits of our understanding of the climate system. We are now in truly uncharted territory," said David Carlson, World Climate Research Programme Director at the WMO.

In the face of all this information, climate researchers around the world are irked by the attitude of the Trump government in Washington.'

- Matt McGrath, 'Extreme and unusual' climate trends continue after record 2016, March 21, 2017


Context

Update (February 11, 2017) - '..ethical standards..' ('.. Dr. Bates appeared to distance himself from some of what he wrote in the blog post..')

'..Earth is warming more rapidly than previously thought was correct..'

          (Banking Reform - Monetary Reform) - '..debt is our biggest security threat..' (no replies)        
'Now that he is president, Trump likes to tout the fact he’s listening to America’s generals. Perhaps he needs to talk to General Mike Millen, the former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Perhaps then he would see that the greatest threat America faces isn’t from China, Russia, or North Korea – it is from the national debt. Until Trump reverses course on military spending, and gets tough on entitlements, his "America First" budget will only make the US worse off.'

- Tho Bishop (Source, March 20, 2017)


'..a crippling national debt..'

'Under a Republican budget resolution, the national debt will explode by a third from an already staggering $19 billion to $29 trillion over the next ten years. Although counterintuitive, Democratic presidents, at least those after World War II, have reduced deficits as a portion of the value of the national economy (GDP) while Republican presidents have increased them — thus accumulating less public debt as a percentage of GDP. Yet neither political party has paid enough attention to this burgeoning national security problem.

National security problem? Yes. General Mike Mullen, while he was Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the nation’s top military man, was enlightened enough about long-term health of American power to realize that it takes continuing infusions of money to acquire the weapons and equipment, personnel, training, maintenance and benefits to create a credible military to adequately defend the country. In addition, all other indices of national power — political, diplomatic and cultural — require money too.

To generate those resources, a strong economy is needed. The number one problem dragging down economic growth rates through the George W. Bush and Barack Obama presidencies was a crippling national debt..'

- Ivan Eland, National debt is our biggest security threat: Column, January 11, 2017


Context

'..World Debt Hits $152 Trillion.'

'Our nation and the world are paying a very heavy price for a failed experiment in Inflationism..' - Doug Noland

'..Global policies since the 2008 crisis have spurred the expansion of speculative finance to multiples of pre-crisis levels..'


'Germany Plans to Cut 2017 Debt Sales .. Balanced-Budget..'

'..monetary knowledge .. of currency reform under difficult conditions you have to go to Carl Menger.'

(Banking Reform - Monetary Reform) - '..The Theory of Money and Credit .. an invaluable guide for ending the business cycles of our own time.'


(Banking Reform - English/Dutch) '..a truly stable financial and monetary system for the twenty-first century..'

          Update (February 11, 2017) - '..ethical standards..' ('.. Dr. Bates appeared to distance himself from some of what he wrote in the blog post..') (no replies)        
Update February 11, 2017: 'In an interview on Monday with E&E News, Dr. Bates appeared to distance himself from some of what he wrote in the blog post, and from the way his criticisms were portrayed in the Mail on Sunday article.

“The issue here is not an issue of tampering with data,” he said, “but rather really of timing of a release of a paper that had not properly disclosed everything it was.”

Climate Home, a nonprofit site based in London that offers news and analysis, also weighed in on one of the central contentions of Mr. Rose’s article, that the publication of the NOAA paper had "duped” policy makers into adopting the Paris accord. The site contacted representatives to the talks from 10 countries; none said that the paper had any influence.'

- Henry Fountain, No Data Manipulation in 2015 Climate Study, Researchers Say, February 7, 2016


Update February 09, 2017: 'Dr Bates’ main complaint is that Dr Karl and his co-authors did not follow strict procedures required for NOAA’s ‘operational’ data. It is not yet clear whether Dr Karl should have subjected his research data to the same procedures. Dr Karl, who retired from NOAA in August 2016, has not yet had the opportunity to respond fully to Dr Bates’ allegations.'

- LSE: More fake news in ‘The Mail on Sunday’, February 5, 2017 (Wikipedia Bans Daily Mail As 'Unreliable' Source, February 08, 2017))


'..a failure to observe proper ethical standards..'

'Dr John Bates’s disclosures about the manipulation of data behind the ‘Pausebuster’ paper is the biggest scientific scandal since ‘Climategate’ in 2009 when, as this paper reported, thousands of leaked emails revealed scientists were trying to block access to data, and using a ‘trick’ to conceal embarrassing flaws in their claims about global warming.

Both scandals suggest a lack of transparency and, according to Dr Bates, a failure to observe proper ethical standards.

Because of NOAA ’s failure to ‘archive’ data used in the paper, its results can never be verified.

Like Climategate, this scandal is likely to reverberate around the world, and reignite some of science’s most hotly contested debates.'

- Exposed: How world leaders were duped into investing billions over manipulated global warming data, February 4, 2017


'Whatever takes its place, said Dr Bates, ‘there needs to be a fundamental change to the way NOAA deals with data so that people can check and validate scientific results. I’m hoping that this will be a wake-up call to the climate science community – a signal that we have to put in place processes to make sure this kind of crap doesn’t happen again.

..

Dr Bates said: ‘How ironic it is that there is now this idea that Trump is going to trash climate data, when key decisions were earlier taken by someone whose responsibility it was to maintain its integrity – and failed.’ '


'Dr Bates retired from NOAA at the end of last year after a 40-year career in meteorology and climate science. As recently as 2014, the Obama administration awarded him a special gold medal for his work in setting new, supposedly binding standards ‘to produce and preserve climate data records’.

..

Less than two years earlier, a blockbuster report from the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which drew on the work of hundreds of scientists around the world, had found ‘a much smaller increasing trend over the past 15 years 1998-2012 than over the past 30 to 60 years’. Explaining the pause became a key issue for climate science. It was seized on by global warming sceptics, because the level of CO2 in the atmosphere had continued to rise.

..

In the weeks after the Pausebuster paper was published, Dr Bates conducted a one-man investigation into this. His findings were extraordinary. Not only had Mr Karl and his colleagues failed to follow any of the formal procedures required to approve and archive their data, they had used a ‘highly experimental early run’ of a programme that tried to combine two previously separate sets of records.

..

Dr Bates revealed that the failure to archive and make available fully documented data not only violated NOAA rules, but also those set down by Science. Before he retired last year, he continued to raise the issue internally. Then came the final bombshell. Dr Bates said: ‘I learned that the computer used to process the software had suffered a complete failure.’

The reason for the failure is unknown, but it means the Pausebuster paper can never be replicated or verified by other scientists.

..

Whatever takes its place, said Dr Bates, ‘there needs to be a fundamental change to the way NOAA deals with data so that people can check and validate scientific results. I’m hoping that this will be a wake-up call to the climate science community – a signal that we have to put in place processes to make sure this kind of crap doesn’t happen again.

Dr Bates said: ‘How ironic it is that there is now this idea that Trump is going to trash climate data, when key decisions were earlier taken by someone whose responsibility it was to maintain its integrity – and failed.’

NOAA not only failed, but it effectively mounted a cover-up when challenged over its data. After the paper was published, the US House of Representatives Science Committee launched an inquiry into its Pausebuster claims. NOAA refused to comply with subpoenas demanding internal emails from the committee chairman, the Texas Republican Lamar Smith, and falsely claimed that no one had raised concerns about the paper internally.'

- Exposed: How world leaders were duped into investing billions over manipulated global warming data, February 4, 2017


Context '..conduct more meetings on ethics .. Respectful discussion of different points of view should be encouraged.' - John Bates

Climategate: Follow the Money - By Bret Stephens

Those Who Control the Past Control the Future, Climate Data Edition, February 5, 2017

'..Earth is warming more rapidly than previously thought was correct..'


'Trees are the best known ‘technology’ to cool our planet'

Focus Fusion - '..So, production reactors by 2020 or so.'

(Earth Defence - Earth Shield) - Faraday - Tesla - 'The Accelerating Winds of Venus.' (Electric Universe - Solar Climate Change)


(The Electric Universe - Earth Defence - Earth Shield) - Electric Fossils and Thundercrabs

(The Electric Universe) - '..weather systems .. an electric “wind” surrounds and often precedes an electric arc.'

(Thymology - Haptopraxeology) - '..entrepreneurship .. actions he will carry out and estimates the future effect of those actions..'


'...The peer review process is broken...' - '...don't have the "situational awareness"...'

On the Mail on Sunday article on Karl et al., 2015, February 5, 2017

          'We have no experience in stopping a nuclear war.' - Sidney Drell (no replies)        
'..My greatest concern is the lack of public awareness about this existential threat, the absence of a vigorous public debate about the nuclear-war plans of Russia and the United States, the silent consent to the roughly fifteen thousand nuclear weapons in the world. These machines have been carefully and ingeniously designed to kill us. Complacency increases the odds that, some day, they will. The “Titanic Effect” is a term used by software designers to explain how things can quietly go wrong in a complex technological system: the safer you assume the system to be, the more dangerous it is becoming.'

'The harsh rhetoric on both sides increases the danger of miscalculations and mistakes, as do other factors. Close encounters between the military aircraft of the United States and Russia have become routine, creating the potential for an unintended conflict. Many of the nuclear-weapon systems on both sides are aging and obsolete. The personnel who operate those systems often suffer from poor morale and poor training. None of their senior officers has firsthand experience making decisions during an actual nuclear crisis. And today’s command-and-control systems must contend with threats that barely existed during the Cold War: malware, spyware, worms, bugs, viruses, corrupted firmware, logic bombs, Trojan horses, and all the other modern tools of cyber warfare. The greatest danger is posed not by any technological innovation but by a dilemma that has haunted nuclear strategy since the first detonation of an atomic bomb: How do you prevent a nuclear attack while preserving the ability to launch one?

..

..the Cuban Missile Crisis, when a series of misperceptions, miscalculations, and command-and-control problems almost started an accidental nuclear war—despite the determination of both John F. Kennedy and Nikita Khrushchev to avoid one. In perhaps the most dangerous incident, the captain of a Soviet submarine mistakenly believed that his vessel was under attack by U.S. warships and ordered the firing of a torpedo armed with a nuclear warhead. His order was blocked by a fellow officer. Had the torpedo been fired, the United States would have retaliated with nuclear weapons. At the height of the crisis, while leaving the White House on a beautiful fall evening, McNamara had a strong feeling of dread—and for good reason: “I feared I might never live to see another Saturday night.”

..

The personnel who command, operate, and maintain the Minuteman III have also become grounds for concern. In 2013, the two-star general in charge of the entire Minuteman force was removed from duty after going on a drunken bender during a visit to Russia, behaving inappropriately with young Russian women, asking repeatedly if he could sing with a Beatles cover band at a Mexican restaurant in Moscow, and insulting his military hosts. The following year, almost a hundred Minuteman launch officers were disciplined for cheating on their proficiency exams. In 2015, three launch officers at Malmstrom Air Force Base, in Montana, were dismissed for using illegal drugs, including ecstasy, cocaine, and amphetamines. That same year, a launch officer at Minot Air Force Base, in North Dakota, was sentenced to twenty-five years in prison for heading a violent street gang, distributing drugs, sexually assaulting a girl under the age of sixteen, and using psilocybin, a powerful hallucinogen. As the job title implies, launch officers are entrusted with the keys for launching intercontinental ballistic missiles.

..

..A recent memoir, “Uncommon Cause,” written by General George Lee Butler, reveals that the Pentagon was not telling the truth. Butler was the head of the U.S. Strategic Command, responsible for all of America’s nuclear weapons, during the Administration of President George H. W. Bush.

According to Butler and Franklin Miller, a former director of strategic-forces policy at the Pentagon, launch-on-warning was an essential part of the Single Integrated Operational Plan (siop), the nation’s nuclear-war plan. Land-based missiles like the Minuteman III were aimed at some of the most important targets in the Soviet Union, including its anti-aircraft sites. If the Minuteman missiles were destroyed before liftoff, the siop would go awry, and American bombers might be shot down before reaching their targets. In order to prevail in a nuclear war, the siop had become dependent on getting Minuteman missiles off the ground immediately. Butler’s immersion in the details of the nuclear command-and-control system left him dismayed. “With the possible exception of the Soviet nuclear war plan, [the siop] was the single most absurd and irresponsible document I had ever reviewed in my life,” Butler concluded. “We escaped the Cold War without a nuclear holocaust by some combination of skill, luck, and divine intervention, and I suspect the latter in greatest proportion.” The siop called for the destruction of twelve thousand targets within the Soviet Union. Moscow would be struck by four hundred nuclear weapons; Kiev, the capital of the Ukraine, by about forty.

After the end of the Cold War, a Russian surprise attack became extremely unlikely. Nevertheless, hundreds of Minuteman III missiles remained on alert. The Cold War strategy endured because, in theory, it deterred a Russian attack on the missiles. McNamara called the policy “insane,” arguing that “there’s no military requirement for it.” George W. Bush, while running for President in 2000, criticized launch-on-warning, citing the “unacceptable risks of accidental or unauthorized launch.” Barack Obama, while running for President in 2008, promised to take Minuteman missiles off alert, warning that policies like launch-on-warning “increase the risk of catastrophic accidents or miscalculation.” Twenty scientists who have won the Nobel Prize, as well as the Union of Concerned Scientists, have expressed strong opposition to retaining a launch-on-warning capability. It has also been opposed by former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, former Secretary of State George Shultz, and former Senator Sam Nunn. And yet the Minuteman III missiles still sit in their silos today, armed with warheads, ready to go.

William J. Perry, who served as Secretary of Defense during the Clinton Administration, not only opposes keeping Minuteman III missiles on alert but advocates getting rid of them entirely. “These missiles are some of the most dangerous weapons in the world,” Perry wrote in the Times, this September. For many reasons, he thinks the risk of a nuclear catastrophe is greater today than it was during the Cold War. While serving as an Under-Secretary of Defense in 1980, Perry also received a late-night call about an impending Soviet attack, a false alarm that still haunts him. “A catastrophic nuclear war could have started by accident.”

Bruce Blair, a former Minuteman launch officer, heads the anti-nuclear group Global Zero, teaches at Princeton University, and campaigns against a launch-on-warning policy. Blair has described the stresses that the warning of a Russian attack would put on America’s command-and-control system. American early-warning satellites would detect Russian missiles within three minutes of their launch. Officers at norad would confer for an additional three minutes, checking sensors to decide if an attack was actually occurring. The Integrated Tactical Warning/Attack System collects data from at least two independent information sources, relying on different physical principles, such as ground-based radar and satellite-based infrared sensors. If the norad officials thought that the warning was legitimate, the President of the United States would be contacted. He or she would remove the Black Book from a briefcase carried by a military aide. The Black Book describes nuclear retaliatory options, presented in cartoon-like illustrations that can be quickly understood.

..

Although the Air Force publicly dismissed the threat of a cyberattack on the nuclear command-and-control system, the incident raised alarm within the Pentagon about the system’s vulnerability. A malfunction that occurred by accident might also be caused deliberately. Those concerns were reinforced by a Defense Science Board report in January, 2013. It found that the Pentagon’s computer networks had been “built on inherently insecure architectures that are composed of, and increasingly using, foreign parts.” Red teams employed by the board were able to disrupt Pentagon systems with “relative ease,” using tools available on the Internet. “The complexity of modern software and hardware makes it difficult, if not impossible, to develop components without flaws or to detect malicious insertions,” the report concluded.

In a recent paper for the Royal United Services Institute for Defence and Security Studies, Andrew Futter, an associate professor at the University of Leicester, suggested that a nuclear command-and-control system might be hacked to gather intelligence about the system, to shut down the system, to spoof it, mislead it, or cause it to take some sort of action—like launching a missile. And, he wrote, there are a variety of ways it might be done.

..

Strict precautions have been taken to thwart a cyberattack on the U.S. nuclear command-and-control system. Every line of nuclear code has been scrutinized for errors and bugs. The system is “air-gapped,” meaning that its networks are closed: someone can’t just go onto the Internet and tap into a computer at a Minuteman III control center. At least, that’s the theory. Russia, China, and North Korea have sophisticated cyber-warfare programs and techniques. General James Cartwright—the former head of the U.S. Strategic Command who recently pleaded guilty to leaking information about Stuxnet—thinks that it’s reasonable to believe the system has already been penetrated. “You’ve either been hacked, and you’re not admitting it, or you’re being hacked and don’t know it,” Cartwright said last year.

If communications between Minuteman control centers and their missiles are interrupted, the missiles can still be launched by ultra-high-frequency radio signals transmitted by special military aircraft. The ability to launch missiles by radio serves as a backup to the control centers—and also creates an entry point into the network that could be exploited in a cyberattack. The messages sent within the nuclear command-and-control system are highly encrypted. Launch codes are split in two, and no single person is allowed to know both parts. But the complete code is stored in computers—where it could be obtained or corrupted by an insider.

Some of America’s most secret secrets were recently hacked and stolen by a couple of private contractors working inside the N.S.A., Edward Snowden and Harold T. Martin III, both employees of Booz Allen Hamilton. The N.S.A. is responsible for generating and encrypting the nuclear launch codes. And the security of the nuclear command-and-control system is being assured not only by government officials but also by the employees of private firms, including software engineers who work for Boeing, Amazon, and Microsoft.

Lord Des Browne, a former U.K. Minister of Defense, is concerned that even ballistic-missile submarines may be compromised by malware. Browne is now the vice-chairman of the Nuclear Threat Initiative, a nonprofit seeking to reduce the danger posed by weapons of mass destruction, where he heads a task force examining the risk of cyberattacks on nuclear command-and-control systems. Browne thinks that the cyber threat is being cavalierly dismissed by many in power. The Royal Navy’s decision to save money by using Windows for Submarines, a version of Windows XP, as the operating system for its ballistic-missile subs seems especially shortsighted. Windows XP was discontinued six years ago, and Microsoft warned that any computer running it after April, 2014, “should not be considered protected as there will be no security updates.” Each of the U.K. subs has eight missiles carrying a total of forty nuclear weapons. “It is shocking to think that my home computer is probably running a newer version of Windows than the U.K.’s military submarines,” Brown said.In 2013, General C. Robert Kehler, the head of the U.S. Strategic Command, testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee about the risk of cyberattacks on the nuclear command-and-control system. He expressed confidence that the U.S. system was secure. When Senator Bill Nelson asked if somebody could hack into the Russian or Chinese systems and launch a ballistic missile carrying a nuclear warhead, Kehler replied, “Senator, I don’t know . . . I do not know.”

After the debacle of the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Soviet Union became much more reluctant to provoke a nuclear confrontation with the United States. Its politburo was a committee of conservative old men. Russia’s leadership is quite different today. The current mix of nationalism, xenophobia, and vehement anti-Americanism in Moscow is a far cry from the more staid and secular ideology guiding the Soviet Union in the nineteen-eighties. During the past few years, threats about the use of nuclear weapons have become commonplace in Moscow. Dmitry Kiselyov, a popular newscaster and the Kremlin’s leading propagandist, reminded viewers in 2014 that Russia is “the only country in the world capable of turning the U.S.A. into radioactive dust.” The Kremlin has acknowledged the development of a nuclear torpedo that can travel more than six thousand miles underwater before devastating a coastal city. It has also boasted about a fearsome new missile design. Nicknamed “Satan 2” and deployed with up to sixteen nuclear warheads, the missile will be “capable of wiping out parts of the earth the size of Texas or France,” an official news agency claimed.

..

Russia’s greatest strategic vulnerability is the lack of a sophisticated and effective early-warning system. The Soviet Union had almost a dozen satellites in orbit that could detect a large-scale American attack. The system began to deteriorate in 1996, when an early-warning satellite had to be retired. Others soon fell out of orbit, and Russia’s last functional early-warning satellite went out of service two years ago. Until a new network of satellites can be placed in orbit, the country must depend on ground-based radar units. Unlike the United States, Russia no longer has two separate means of validating an attack warning. At best, the radar units can spot warheads only minutes before they land. Pavel Podvig, a senior fellow at the U.N. Institute for Disarmament Research, believes that Russia does not have a launch-on-warning policy—because its early-warning system is so limited.

For the past nine years, I’ve been immersed in the minutiae of nuclear command and control, trying to understand the actual level of risk. Of all the people whom I’ve met in the nuclear realm, Sidney Drell was one of the most brilliant and impressive. Drell died this week, at the age of ninety. A theoretical physicist with expertise in quantum field theory and quantum chromodynamics, he was for many years the deputy director of the Stanford Linear Accelerator and received the National Medal of Science from Obama, in 2013. Drell was one of the founding members of jason—a group of civilian scientists that advises the government on important technological matters—and for fifty-six years possessed a Q clearance, granting him access to the highest level of classified information. Drell participated in top-secret discussions about nuclear strategy for decades, headed a panel that investigated nuclear-weapon safety for the U.S. Congress in 1990, and worked on technical issues for jason until the end of his life. A few months ago, when I asked for his opinion about launch-on-warning, Drell said, “It’s insane, the worst thing I can think of. You can’t have a worse idea.”

Drell was an undergraduate at Princeton University when Hiroshima and Nagasaki were destroyed. Given all the close calls and mistakes in the seventy-one years since then, he considered it a miracle that no other cities have been destroyed by a nuclear weapon—“it is so far beyond my normal optimism.” The prospect of a new cold war—and the return of military strategies that advocate using nuclear weapons on the battlefield—deeply unnerved him. Once the first nuclear weapon detonates, nothing might prevent the conflict from spiralling out of control. “We have no experience in stopping a nuclear war,” he said.

..

Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin confront a stark choice: begin another nuclear-arms race or reduce the threat of nuclear war. Trump now has a unique opportunity to pursue the latter, despite the bluster and posturing on both sides. His admiration for Putin, regardless of its merits, could provide the basis for meaningful discussions about how to minimize nuclear risks. Last year, General James Mattis, the former Marine chosen by Trump to serve as Secretary of Defense, called for a fundamental reappraisal of American nuclear strategy and questioned the need for land-based missiles. During Senate testimony, Mattis suggested that getting rid of such missiles would “reduce the false-alarm danger.” Contrary to expectations, Republican Presidents have proved much more successful than their Democratic counterparts at nuclear disarmament. President George H. W. Bush cut the size of the American arsenal in half, as did his son, President George W. Bush. And President Ronald Reagan came close to negotiating a treaty with the Soviet Union that would have completely abolished nuclear weapons.

Every technology embodies the values of the age in which it was created. When the atomic bomb was being developed in the mid-nineteen-forties, the destruction of cities and the deliberate targeting of civilians was just another military tactic. It was championed as a means to victory. The Geneva Conventions later classified those practices as war crimes—and yet nuclear weapons have no other real use. They threaten and endanger noncombatants for the sake of deterrence. Conventional weapons can now be employed to destroy every kind of military target, and twenty-first-century warfare puts an emphasis on precision strikes, cyberweapons, and minimizing civilian casualties. As a technology, nuclear weapons have become obsolete. What worries me most isn’t the possibility of a cyberattack, a technical glitch, or a misunderstanding starting a nuclear war sometime next week. My greatest concern is the lack of public awareness about this existential threat, the absence of a vigorous public debate about the nuclear-war plans of Russia and the United States, the silent consent to the roughly fifteen thousand nuclear weapons in the world. These machines have been carefully and ingeniously designed to kill us. Complacency increases the odds that, some day, they will. The “Titanic Effect” is a term used by software designers to explain how things can quietly go wrong in a complex technological system: the safer you assume the system to be, the more dangerous it is becoming.'

- Eric Schlosser, World War Three, By Mistake, December 23, 2016


Context

The International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons

          '..Earth is warming more rapidly than previously thought was correct..' (no replies)        
Update February 11, 2017: '..ethical standards..' ('.. Dr. Bates appeared to distance himself from some of what he wrote in the blog post..')


'A new study has shown that a 2015 NOAA paper finding that the Earth is warming more rapidly than previously thought was correct.

..

This paper is another reminder why it is so important to invest in the temperature measurements that are needed to create long-term climate records. We really need uninterrupted measurements that span many years/decades if we want to truly understand the Earth’s changing climate.

..Now let’s move on to solving the problem.'

- New study confirms NOAA finding of faster global warming, January 4, 2017


Context

Focus Fusion - '..So, production reactors by 2020 or so.'

(The Electric Universe) - '..weather systems .. an electric “wind” surrounds and often precedes an electric arc.'

(Global Infrastructure Upgrade) - Mexico's former president: Global infrastructure needs an upgrade

          '..another Cold War that may last even longer than the war with world communism.' (no replies)        
'..until Muslim scholars find a Koran key to the free world and lead their followers to an entrance.'

'Economists pondering about human action distinguish between four types of individual incomes; the Koran permits only two, which explains much poverty in the Muslim world. Economists speak of labor income which flows from services rendered either in self-employment or working for an employer; the Koran smiles upon this basic kind of income. Economists also discern interest income which, reflecting human frailty and mortality, flows from the differences between man’s valuation of present economic goods and future goods; the Koran condemns “riba”, that is, interest income, and threatens all creditors who may be tempted to demand “riba” with “the fire prepared for unbelievers.” Economists also like to wax eloquent about entrepreneurial income, commonly called profits, which may be earned through correct anticipation of economic changes; failure to anticipate changes correctly may inflict entrepreneurial losses. The Koran simply prohibits economic activity that involves uncertainty, risk, or speculation and may earn “ghara.” The prohibition obviously discourages and hampers economic changes, adjustments, modernizations, and improvements that are uncertain and risky.

..

Muslim clerics are the tutors and preceptors not only of Islamic theology but also of social and economic ideology. Surely, they may not descend to the level of envy but may fly into anger and passion about the sinful behavior of all non-believers, that is, Christians and Jews, who grow rich in market economies, engaging in uncertain, risky, and speculative economic activity and prospering on riba and ghara. For some clerics the United States is the “Great Satan” and Israel his little offspring. It cannot be surprising that faithful followers abhor, fear, and hate the Great Satan and wish him evil. When a few Muslim fanatics flew into the World Trade Center in New York, killing more than 2,900 men and women, and another hijacked plane hit the Pentagon, killing 189 employees, jubilant masses thronged streets across the Muslim world, celebrating and rejoicing about the destruction and massacre.

..

..Today, the United States is in the early stages of a long struggle with radical Islamism that has been waging war against this country for some thirty years. Radical Islamic states have been breeding, sheltering, and financing the terrorist armies and radical clerics are invoking divine favor upon them.

The Western world, and especially the United States, is facing the prospect of a long and bitter war with a fanatical enemy. It is a desperate enemy because powerful forces of change are eroding its very ideological foundation. Modern communication technology has opened the windows of the world and is allowing people everywhere to observe Western mores and living conditions. A network of communication satellites, for instance, is continuously receiving, amplifying, and rebroadcasting signals to earth. Western ideas are reaching the minds of people everywhere and changing social, economic, political, and educational institutions. It cannot be surprising that Muslim autocracies like to keep the windows closed by monopolizing and disallowing access to such technology.

It is doubtful that the U.S. military will crush and completely render inactive a desperate enemy consisting of an organized guerilla force of Allah-fearing men and women. A small army of suicidal fanatics, a diminutive percentage of one billion and three hundred million Muslims in 206 countries, may wear away the patience and resolve of the American public and its political and military commanders. Such a possibility does not in any way intimate a victory and sway of Muslim fanatics over the forces of the West. Its paramount strength does not rest on brute military might but on its free and open way of life, its private property order and individual enterprise system. Its windows are wide open and its busy subjects are at work all over the world, simple ambassadors or even missionaries of its order. Even if the United States should ever stumble and lose its way, the windows are wide open and the bright light of individual freedom and the private property order would remain visible in many other parts of the West. It is unlikely that it can ever be extinguished.

The U.S. military is not going to conquer many Muslim countries, but individual freedom and the private property order may in time..

..

We shall know the future only when it comes. But our thoughts like to live in the future, and what they see is another Cold War that may last even longer than the war with world communism. They see the Muslim world in a crisis which causes a few revolutionaries to strike at Americans. Insurgents may continue to lash out until Muslim scholars find a Koran key to the free world and lead their followers to an entrance.'

- Hans F. Sennholz, In Another Cold War, 2004


Context

'..the battle of ideas taking place in the Muslim world..'

(Bazaarmodel - To Heal - Teal) - '..is it possible to build a truly Evolutionary-Teal school?'

          '..dismantle the Marxist myth..' - 'Karl Marx, False consciousness' (no replies)        
'Every once in a while, even The Economist gets it right. In a review of an intellectual biography of Marx (Karl Marx: Greatness and Illusion), published this past fall, they argue that “the myth is more impressive than the reality”. Echoing, in fact, several arguments from the book—written, surprisingly enough, by a scholar with Marxist leanings—, they point out how out of step Marx was with the theoretical developments of 19th century economics, and how dense and often nonsensical his writings were.

As refreshing as it may be, this perspective on Marx is hardly a new one. We know that throughout his work, Ludwig von Mises has exploded many of the fallacies of the Marxist school of thought, particularly those concerning the workings of a socialist system and the idea of class struggle. But Mises had, in several of his publications, also criticized the myth of Marx, pointing out inconsistencies and errors in his research, as well as criticizing his writing style.

Even if it will take a long time to dismantle the Marxist myth, I’d like to think that it will be Mises’s view of the world that will prevail.'

- Carmen Elena Dorobat, Mises on the Myth of Marx, December 26, 2016


'..Karl Marx .. the myth is more impressive than the reality.'

'COMMUNISM collapsed nearly 30 years ago, but the influence of Karl Marx lives on. Marxist approaches are found in some of the most interesting history and sociology being published today. Marx’s works, including “The Communist Manifesto”, written with Friedrich Engels in 1848, may have had more impact on the modern world than many suppose. Of the manifesto’s ten principal demands, perhaps four have been met in many rich countries, including “free education for all children in public schools” and a “progressive or graduated income tax”.

..

The overriding impression from this book is that Marx’s reputation (at least in some quarters) as an unrivalled economist-philosopher is wide of the mark. Marx had planned to write “Capital” in multiple volumes. He finished the first. But when it came to writing the second, on realising that he would face insurmountable intellectual hurdles, he pleaded illness (though seemed quite able to do other sorts of research). “Karl” was in the thick of the intellectual developments of the 19th century. But the myth is more impressive than the reality.'

- The Economist, Karl Marx, False consciousness, August 25, 2016


Context (Praxeology) - '..Menger’s experience stressed subjective factors..'

(Praxeology) - '..his or her subjective values .. to explain all economic phenomena as the results of what people do..'

(Praxeology) - 'Economics .. is about human choice and action.' - '..books by Mises, Rothbard and Hayek are already translated .. online bookstore in China..'

(Praxeology) - Savings - Economic Growth - 'We Need More Wealth, Not Necessarily More Employment' - Entrepreneurship


'..You really have to be able to think about the post-bureaucratic world..'

'..economic growth cannot be conjured into being by top-down interventionism in the form of monetary pumping and deficit spending..'

' “Monetary policy… after all, is extremely important” – is an understatement.' - Doug Noland


'..have organizations that are more and more adaptable and far more humane..'

'When Jan Patocka wrote .. the phenomenon of human conscience..' - Václav Havel

'..the phenomenon of wave after wave of economic ups and downs is ideological in character..'


Praxeology '...the primordial fact of individual human action.'

          (Bazaarmodel - To Heal - Teal) - '..is it possible to build a truly Evolutionary-Teal school?' (no replies)        
'This factory-like system seems increasingly out of date. More and more people are crying out for innovation in education and starting to experiment with curricula, technologies, and governance in schools. But is it possible to build a truly Evolutionary-Teal school? And what would it look like? A superb example can be found in the center of Berlin in Germany. The “ESBZ” is a grade 7-12 school that opened its doors in 2007 with more than a bit of improvisation. Just three months before the start of the school year, the city council had suddenly given a decrepit prefabricated building from communist times to a group of pesky parents who simply wouldn’t let go of their dream. When the school year started, only 16 students were registered. A few months later, at the mid-year point, 30 more students had joined, mostly rejects and troublemakers other schools had expelled. Hardly a promising start for a new school. And yet today, only a few years later, the school has 500 students and attracts hundreds of principals, teachers, and education specialists from all over the country who want to study the ESBZ model.'

- Frederic Laloux, (Reinventing Organizations, Chapter 2.2 _ Self-management Structures), page 93


'..Yet unlike Sudbury, Montessori or Steiner schools, Rasfeld’s institution tries to embed student self-determination within a relatively strict system of rules. Students who dawdle during lessons have to come into school on Saturday morning to catch up, a punishment known as “silentium”. “The more freedom you have, the more structure you need,” says Rasfeld.

The main reason why the ESBC is gaining a reputation as Germany’s most exciting school is that its experimental philosophy has managed to deliver impressive results..'


'..At Oberländer’s school, there are no grades until students turn 15, no timetables and no lecture-style instructions. The pupils decide which subjects they want to study for each lesson and when they want to take an exam.

The school’s syllabus reads like any helicopter parent’s nightmare. Set subjects are limited to maths, German, English and social studies, supplemented by more abstract courses such as “responsibility” and “challenge”. For challenge, students aged 12 to 14 are given €150 (£115) and sent on an adventure that they have to plan entirely by themselves. Some go kayaking; others work on a farm. Anton went trekking along England’s south coast.

The philosophy behind these innovations is simple: as the requirements of the labour market are changing, and smartphones and the internet are transforming the ways in which young people process information, the school’s headteacher, Margret Rasfeld, argues, the most important skill a school can pass down to its students is the ability to motivate themselves.

“Look at three or four year olds – they are all full of self-confidence,” Rasfeld says. “Often, children can’t wait to start school. But frustratingly, most schools then somehow manage to untrain that confidence.”

The Evangelical School Berlin Centre (ESBC) is trying to do nothing less than “reinvent what a school is”, she says. “The mission of a progressive school should be to prepare young people to cope with change, or better still, to make them look forward to change. In the 21st century, schools should see it as their job to develop strong personalities.”

Making students listen to a teacher for 45 minutes and punishing them for collaborating on an exercise, Rasfeld says, was not only out of sync with the requirements of the modern world of work, but counterproductive. “Nothing motivates students more than when they discover the meaning behind a subject of their own accord.”

Students at her school are encouraged to think up other ways to prove their acquired skills, such as coding a computer game instead of sitting a maths exam. Oberländer, who had never been away from home for three weeks until he embarked on his challenge in Cornwall, said he learned more English on his trip than he had in several years of learning the language at school.

Germany’s federalised education structure, in which each of the 16 states plans its own education system, has traditionally allowed “free learning” models to flourish. Yet unlike Sudbury, Montessori or Steiner schools, Rasfeld’s institution tries to embed student self-determination within a relatively strict system of rules. Students who dawdle during lessons have to come into school on Saturday morning to catch up, a punishment known as “silentium”. “The more freedom you have, the more structure you need,” says Rasfeld.

The main reason why the ESBC is gaining a reputation as Germany’s most exciting school is that its experimental philosophy has managed to deliver impressive results..

..

Aged 65 and due to retire in July, Rasfeld still has ambitious plans. A four-person “education innovation lab” based at the school has been developing teaching materials for schools that want to follow the ESBC’s lead. About 40 schools in Germany are in the process of adopting some or all of Rasfeld’s methods. One in Berlin’s Weissensee district recently let a student trek across the Alps for a challenge project. “Things are only getting started,” says Rasfeld.

“In education, you can only create change from the bottom – if the orders come from the top, schools will resist. Ministries are like giant oil tankers: it takes a long time to turn them around. What we need is lots of little speedboats to show you can do things differently.” '

- Philip Oltermann, No grades, no timetable: Berlin school turns teaching upside down, July 1, 2016


Context

(To Heal - Teal - Bazaarmodel) - Striving for wholeness '..We have let our busy egos trump the quiet voice of our soul; many cultures often celebrate the mind and neglect the body..'

(Bazaarmodel - To Heal - Teal) - 'Your physical .. cultural .. soul heredity..'

(To Heal) - Overview of Focus Levels '..to areas of greater free will choice.'


(To Heal) - Overview of Focus Levels '..to areas of greater free will choice.'

          The Christmas Truce of 1914 - '..what might have happened if the truce had spread and this had caused the war to end earlier..' (no replies)        
'.."What If," points out that he thinks … and of course this is speculation, counterfactual history ... that if we had had no Russian Revolution, we wouldn’t have gotten to that point where communism took over, no Lenin, no Stalin, there would be no Treaty of Versailles, mistreated Germany, therefore Hitler would not have had his cause to rise and no Hitler and Nazism and World War II..'

'Deist: One thing that’s so remarkable about the Christmas Truce is this whole question of what might have happened if the truce had spread and this had caused the war to end earlier or be somehow limited. Weintraub addresses this in his book. We may not have had the rise of communism, the Russian Revolution and Stalin and Lenin, we certainly would not have had Versailles. As a result, we might not have had Hitler or Nazism or maybe even FDR. I mean, it’s remarkable to think about, isn’t it?

Denson: That’s right and that’s counterfactual history at its best. Weintraub, in his last chapter, entitled "What If," points out that he thinks … and of course this is speculation, counterfactual history ... that if we had had no Russian Revolution, we wouldn’t have gotten to that point where communism took over, no Lenin, no Stalin, there would be no Treaty of Versailles, mistreated Germany, therefore Hitler would not have had his cause to rise and no Hitler and Nazism and World War II, as I have argued in the past, World War II was simply a continuation of World War I with a truce, and World War I was to see if you could remake the world to benefit the English, the British, and the Russian Czar. World War II was to see if you could keep it that way, what they’d done in World War I. So, it would have changed the whole history, in my opinion, of the twentieth century. And, we are still in the Middle East, suffering the results of the treaties that ended World War I. I mean, the treaties that created Iraq, tried to give Syria to the French, and Israel was created in the middle of an Arab world and it’s still a problem that was created by the World War I treaties. So, all of that, the whole twentieth century, I think, would have been completely different, if it could have ended, say when the troops stopped at Christmas of 1914. It’s amazing to think about that.

..

..H. Kingsley Wood, a cabinet minister, got up and made a speech and he said, he had been in the trenches, he said in the front trenches in Christmas 1914 and he said, I took part in what was well known at the time as a truce. We went over in front of the trenches and shook hands with many of our German enemies and a great number of people and I think we did something that was degrading or wrong and refused to stop, he said, the fact is, we did it. And I then came to the conclusion that I have held very firmly ever since, that if we had been left to ourselves, there never would have been another shot fired. For a fortnight, the troops went on and we were on the most friendly terms and it was only the fact that we were being controlled by others that made it necessary for us to start trying to shoot one another again.

And he blamed the resumption of war on “the grip of the political system which was bad, and I and others who were there at the time, determined there and then, never to rest until we had seen whether we could change it.” And then it concludes. There are people that thrive on war, the military industrial complex and one of the results of the World War I revisionism showed that the people that do the armaments and make money off that, help cause war. There are people, bankers, that have an interest. JP Morgan had a big interest in America getting into World War I and he financed the British Army..'

- The Christmas Truce and the Future of War, December 24, 2016


Context

(Haptopraxeology) - '..We have lost three centuries as a result of ignoring our scholars!'

Christmas Truce of 1914

In The Electric Universe a Future of Peace and Love


'..the mismanagement and corruption of bankers and politicians..

Economics in One Lesson

          European Banking System on Verge of Collapse (no replies)        
'..doubt that European banks still had a viable business model.'

- 'Europe’s banks .. a “very fragile situation”..'


'..Monte dei Paschi, Italy’s third largest bank and oldest bank in the world is insolvent in any realistic scenario.

..

The Financial Times discusses the Vanishing Market Value of European Banks.

“The key to us is understanding this is a profitability issue versus an insolvency issue,” says Hani Redha, a portfolio manager at PineBridge Investments, regarding the sector’s performance.”

I suggest (as does the market) the entire European banking system is on the verge of collapse.'

- Mike "Mish" Shedlock, European Banking System on Verge of Collapse; Market Votes “No Confidence” in Italian Bank Rescue, August 2, 2016


Context (Banking Reform - English/Dutch) '..a truly stable financial and monetary system for the twenty-first century..'

'..the mismanagement and corruption of bankers and politicians in the 21st century.'

'Monte Paschi .. should be put into resolution, not bailed out.'

'..Like monetarists, Keynes held no capital theory .. the role time plays..' - Jesús Huerta de Soto

          '..Russia .. cyberpower proved the perfect weapon .. political sabotage..' (no replies)        
' “We’d have all these circular meetings,” one senior State Department official said, “in which everyone agreed you had to push back at the Russians and push back hard. But it didn’t happen.”

..

Mr. Putin, a student of martial arts, had turned two institutions at the core of American democracy — political campaigns and independent media — to his own ends..

..

..The Russians clearly had a more sophisticated understanding of American politics, and they were masters of “kompromat,” their term for compromising information.

..

..the hackings of the State Department, the White House and the Pentagon..

..

What seems clear is that Russian hacking, given its success, is not going to stop. Two weeks ago, the German intelligence chief, Bruno Kahl, warned that Russia might target elections in Germany next year. “The perpetrators have an interest to delegitimize the democratic process as such,” Mr. Kahl said. Now, he added, “Europe is in the focus of these attempts of disturbance, and Germany to a particularly great extent.” '



'..the White House’s reluctance to respond forcefully meant the Russians have not paid a heavy price for their actions, a decision that could prove critical in deterring future cyberattacks.

..

..President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia moved beyond mere espionage to deliberately try to subvert American democracy and pick the winner of the presidential election.

..

..A low-cost, high-impact weapon that Russia had test-fired in elections from Ukraine to Europe was trained on the United States, with devastating effectiveness. For Russia, with an enfeebled economy and a nuclear arsenal it cannot use short of all-out war, cyberpower proved the perfect weapon: cheap, hard to see coming, hard to trace.

..

The United States had two decades of warning that Russia’s intelligence agencies were trying to break into America’s most sensitive computer networks. But the Russians have always managed to stay a step ahead.

Their first major attack was detected on Oct. 7, 1996, when a computer operator at the Colorado School of Mines discovered some nighttime computer activity he could not explain. The school had a major contract with the Navy, and the operator warned his contacts there. But as happened two decades later at the D.N.C., at first “everyone was unable to connect the dots,” said Thomas Rid, a scholar at King’s College in London who has studied the attack.

Investigators gave it a name — Moonlight Maze — and spent two years, often working day and night, tracing how it hopped from the Navy to the Department of Energy to the Air Force and NASA. In the end, they concluded that the total number of files stolen, if printed and stacked, would be taller than the Washington Monument.

Whole weapons designs were flowing out the door, and it was a first taste of what was to come: an escalating campaign of cyberattacks around the world.

..

The Russians were also quicker to turn their attacks to political purposes. A 2007 cyberattack on Estonia, a former Soviet republic that had joined NATO, sent a message that Russia could paralyze the country without invading it. The next year cyberattacks were used during Russia’s war with Georgia.

..

Mr. Obama was briefed regularly on all this, but he made a decision that many in the White House now regret: He did not name Russians publicly, or issue sanctions. There was always a reason: fear of escalating a cyberwar, and concern that the United States needed Russia’s cooperation in negotiations over Syria.

“We’d have all these circular meetings,” one senior State Department official said, “in which everyone agreed you had to push back at the Russians and push back hard. But it didn’t happen.”

..

Last year, the attacks became more aggressive. Russia hacked a major French television station, frying critical hardware. Around Christmas, it attacked part of the power grid in Ukraine, dropping a portion of the country into darkness, killing backup generators and taking control of generators. In retrospect, it was a warning shot.

..

..CrowdStrike’s nicknames for the two Russian hacking groups that the firm found at work inside the D.N.C. network. Cozy Bear — the group also known as the Dukes or A.P.T. 29, for “advanced persistent threat” — may or may not be associated with the F.S.B., the main successor to the Soviet-era K.G.B., but it is widely believed to be a Russian government operation. It made its first appearance in 2014, said Dmitri Alperovitch, CrowdStrike’s co-founder and chief technology officer.

..

Only in March 2016 did Fancy Bear show up — first penetrating the computers of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, and then jumping to the D.N.C., investigators believe. Fancy Bear, sometimes called A.P.T. 28 and believed to be directed by the G.R.U., Russia’s military intelligence agency, is an older outfit, tracked by Western investigators for nearly a decade. It was Fancy Bear that got hold of Mr. Podesta’s email.

..

It was bad enough that Russian hackers had been spying inside the committee’s network for months. Now the public release of documents had turned a conventional espionage operation into something far more menacing: political sabotage, an unpredictable, uncontrollable menace for Democratic campaigns.

..

Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks founder and editor, has resisted the conclusion that his site became a pass-through for Russian hackers working for Mr. Putin’s government or that he was deliberately trying to undermine Mrs. Clinton’s candidacy. But the evidence on both counts appears compelling.

..

Mr. Putin, a student of martial arts, had turned two institutions at the core of American democracy — political campaigns and independent media — to his own ends. The media’s appetite for the hacked material, and its focus on the gossipy content instead of the Russian source, disturbed some of those whose personal emails were being reposted across the web.

..

In late 2014, hackers working for Kim Jong-un, the North’s young and unpredictable leader, had carried out a well-planned attack on Sony Pictures Entertainment intended to stop the Christmastime release of a comedy about a C.I.A. plot to kill Mr. Kim.

In that case, embarrassing emails had also been released. But the real damage was done to Sony’s own systems: More than 70 percent of its computers melted down when a particularly virulent form of malware was released. Within weeks, intelligence agencies traced the attack back to the North and its leadership. Mr. Obama called North Korea out in public, and issued some not-very-effective sanctions. The Chinese even cooperated, briefly cutting off the North’s internet connections.

As the first Situation Room meetings on the Russian hacking began in July, “it was clear that Russia was going to be a much more complicated case,” said one participant. The Russians clearly had a more sophisticated understanding of American politics, and they were masters of “kompromat,” their term for compromising information.

..

..code was put out in the open by the Russians as a warning: Retaliate for the D.N.C., and there are a lot more secrets, from the hackings of the State Department, the White House and the Pentagon, that might be spilled as well. One senior official compared it to the scene in “The Godfather” where the head of a favorite horse is left in a bed, as a warning.

..

As the year draws to a close, it now seems possible that there will be multiple investigations of the Russian hacking — the intelligence review Mr. Obama has ordered completed by Jan. 20, the day he leaves office, and one or more congressional inquiries. They will wrestle with, among other things, Mr. Putin’s motive.

..

Did he seek to mar the brand of American democracy, to forestall anti-Russian activism for both Russians and their neighbors? Or to weaken the next American president, since presumably Mr. Putin had no reason to doubt American forecasts that Mrs. Clinton would win easily? Or was it, as the C.I.A. concluded last month, a deliberate attempt to elect Mr. Trump?

In fact, the Russian hack-and-dox scheme accomplished all three goals.

What seems clear is that Russian hacking, given its success, is not going to stop. Two weeks ago, the German intelligence chief, Bruno Kahl, warned that Russia might target elections in Germany next year. “The perpetrators have an interest to delegitimize the democratic process as such,” Mr. Kahl said. Now, he added, “Europe is in the focus of these attempts of disturbance, and Germany to a particularly great extent.” '

- Eric Lipton, David E. Sanger and Scott Shane, The Perfect Weapon: How Russian Cyberpower Invaded the U.S., December 13, 2016


Context '[Russia] may become a threat to the world. That is the worst thing that could happen to Russia.' - Yegor Gaidar

'..Russian strategy of hybrid influence and destabilization .. German Council on Foreign Relations.'

'German intelligence says Russia is trying to destabilize German society..' - '..war that Moscow is waging against the West..'

'[Putin is doing] anything that can and will expand Russian influence to U.S.S.R.-era levels of power.'


'..Zero tolerance for Russian intrusions .. Estonia .. policy of publicly naming or prosecuting spies..'

'..the Soviet Union was cut off from Western financial markets and was effectively under permanent sanctions..'

          AAC/Medicare Changes        

I was hoping to have written this post last week, so that you might have more time to help out, but life got in the way!  This is a VERY important post, especially to those of you who rely on Medicare to secure AAC devices.  Specifically this is related to patients with ALS, Cerebral Palsy, Muscular Dystrophy, Rett Syndrome,spinal cord injuries, spinal muscular atrophy and other impairments and their ability to retain and receive Speech Generation Devices (SGD).

As of September 1, Medicare will be changing the rules and will not allow patients to receive this devices to "unlock" them.  Thereby, denying individuals the ability to communicate with their families and other individuals via email, text, video chat, etc...  Even though the unlock fee is not paid by Medicare, they will no longer allow individuals to purchase devices that this could be done on.

Medicare has also been denying Eye Gaze devices for those individuals whose only means of access if via an eye gaze system.  Many of these cases have 2 medical professionals certifying the need for an eye gaze system and it is still denied. The backlog of appeals is years long and many patients are being denied the ability to communicate.

Please take a moment and go to this website - Center for Medical Advocacy, fill in your zip code, and the short form that follows to contact your representatives and urge them to sign a petition to stop these rule changes!  It takes just 2-3 minutes.  You only have until August 27, so please do it right away!



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Saatnya kita kali ini mempermudah diri memahami isi sebuah buku dengan bahasa kita sendiri. Rangkuman baca diantaranya ataupun catatan-catatan kecil tentang isi buku akan lebih memudahkan diri kita megerti apa yng ada dalam buku tersebut. Ada dua buah buku yang saya sajikan milik Prof. Dr. Rachmat Joko Pradopo yaitu, Beberapa Teori Sastra, Metode Kritik dan Penerapannya dan Prinsip-Prinsip Kritik Sastra.

1. Beberapa Teori Sastra, Metode Kritik dan Penerapannya Karya Prof. Dr. Rachmat Joko Pradopo

Buku ini dimaksudkan untuk menanggapi atau mengantisipasi masuknya teori-teori sastra dan kritik sastra yang baru. Disamping itu juga untuk menanggapai kesusastraan Indonesia sendiri, terutama kesusastraan Indonesia modern. Pada saat ii sangat perlu adanya pemahaman terhadap kesusastraan Indonesia modern secara menyeluruh. Oleh karena itu perlu adanya penyusunansejarah sastra Indonesia modern, yang pada waktu itu sudah berusia 75 tahun sejak lahirnya sekitar tahun 1920. berdasarkan alasan ini Rachmat Joko menulis buku tentang teori dan metode penyusunan sejarah sastra, maka didalam buku ini disajikan tulisan ‘Masalah Angkatan dan Penulisan Sejarah Sastra Indonesia’.
Menurut Pradopo (2005:3) teori-teori dan metode kritik sastra Indonesia itu bermacam-macam, yang semuanya untuk konkretisasi dipandang dari sudut pandang teori tertentu. Oleh karena itu dalam buku tersebut tidak semua teri sastra dan kritik sastra dapat dipaparkan. Yang menjadi utamanya adalah teori sastra dan kritik sastra strukturalisme dan semiotik serta teori dan metode estetika resepsi yang sekarang sedang banyak dipelajari dalam kritik sastra ilmiah.
Adapun hal-hal yang dibahas dalam buku “Beberapa Teori Sastra, metode kritik dan Penerapannya” adalah:

1.Masalah Angkatan dan Penulisan Sejarah Sastra Indonesia.
Ada dua masalah yang harus dibahas dalam bagian ini. Pertama, masalah angkatan sastra dan yang kedua akan dibahas masalah penulisan sejarah sastra Indonesia. Yang pada intinya, masalh angkatan itu tak lepas kaitannya dengan penulisan sejarah sastra Indonesia, atau penulisan sejarah sastra Indonesia tak dapat mengesampingkan pemecahan masalah angkatan dalanm sastra Indonesia.
2.Sejarah Puisi Indonesia Modern: Sebuah Ikhtisar.
Pada umumnya sampai sekarang, yang dianggap sebagai tahun lahirnya kesusastraan Indonesia modern adalah tahun1920,tahun terbitnya (ditulisnya) roman Azab dan Sengsara (1921) oleh Merari Siregar. Sedangkan sajak Indonesia modern yang pertama adalah sajak “Tanah Air” yang ditulis oleh M. Yamin. Jadi sesungguhnya lahirnya kesusasraan Indonesia modern itu bukan hanya ditentukan oleh sastra prosa saja melainkan juga sastra puisi dalam Rosidi (1964:7).
3.Perkembangan yang Dialektis dalam Kesusastraan Indonesia Modern.
Dalam tahun 1980an, selama satu dekade, karya-karya sastra yang menampilkan latar sosial budaya daerah makin berkembang seperti tampak dalam karya-karya Linus Suryadi Ag dan Darmanto Jt. Adapula dalam novel-novel Y.B. Mangun Wijaya Burung-Burung Manyar dan Roro Mendut.
4.Pusat Pengisahan Metode Orang Pertama dan Perkembangn Dalam Roman dan Novel Indonesia Modern
Dalam bagian ini diuraikan pusat pengisahan metode orang pertama dan perkembngannya dalam novel dan roman Indonesia modern. Untuk menguraikan perkembangan itudipilih roman dan novel Indonesia modern yang menunjukkan adanya pusat pengisahan orang pertama dan perkembangannya. Roman dan novel yang menjadi sampel dalm bagian ini adalah Di Bawah Lindungan Ka’bah, Atheis, Girah untuk Hidup dan Untuk Mati, Olenka, Priyayi dll.
5.Kritik Sastra Indonesia Modern dan Perkembangannya.
Untuk menafsir, menganalisis dan menilai karya sastra adalah arientasi karya sastra yang menentukan arah atau corak kritik sastra. Orientasi karya sastra itu berdasarkan keseluruhan situasi karya sastra: alam (kehidupan) pembaca, penulis dan karya sastra. Berdasar hal itu ada empat orientasi, yaitu, mimetik, pragmatik, ekspresif dan objektif.
6.Konkretisasi sastra.
Istilah pemberian makna dalam sastra disebut konkretisasi. Dalm analisis karya sastra itu diuraikan unsur-unsur pembentuknya. Dengan demikian makna keseluruhan karya sastra akan dapat dipahami. Hal ini mengingat bahwa karya sastra itu adalah sebuah karya sastra yang utuh. (Hawkes, 1978:16) disamping itu sebuah struktur kemampuan yang utuh dapat dipahami makna keseluruhannya bila diketahui unsur-unsur pembentuknya dan saling hubungan diantaranya dengan keseluruhannya.

7.Penelitian Sastra dengan Pendekatan Semiotik.
Penelitian sastra dengan pendekatan semiotik sesungguhnyamerupakan lanjutan dari pendekatan strukturalisme(Junus,1981:17) bahwa semiotk itu merupakan lanjutan atau perkembangan strukturalisme.
8.Analisis Puisi Secara Struktural dan Semiotik.
Untuk menganalisis struktur sistem tanda perlu adanya kritik struktural untuk memahami makna tanda-tanda yang terjalin dalam sistem (struktur) tersebut. Analisis struktural merupakan prioritas pertama sebelum yang lain-lain, tanpa itu kebulatan makna intrinsik yang dapat digali dari karya itusendiritidak akan tertangkap.
9.Hubungan Intertekstual dalam Sastra donesia.
Intertekstual hanya dapat dipahami dengan baik sesudah bagaimana wujud kritik sastra dan perdebatannya sepanjang sejarahkritik sastra. Dalam bagian ini pertama kali diuraikan mengenai wujud kritik dan perdebatannya.
10.Hubungan Iintertekstual dalm Roman-Roman Balai Pustaka.
Dalam hal ini makna karya sastra tidak semata-mata ditentukan oleh sruktur instrinsiknya saja, melainkan juga ditentukan oleh latar sosial budaya dan kesejarahannya.
11.Estetika Resepsi dan Teori Penerapannya.
Yang dimaksud estetika resepsi adalah estetika(ilmu keindahan) yang didasarkan pada tanggapan-tanggapan atau resepsi-resepsi pembaca terhadap karya sastra. Dari dahulu sampai sekarang karya sastra itu selalu mendpat tangapan-tanggapan pembaca, baik secara perseorangan mauapun secara bersama-sama atau massal.
12.Tinjauan Resepsi Sastra Beberapa Sajak Chairil Anwar.
Karena sebagai pentair yang sangat penting karena sajk-sajaknya, maka drai waktu ke waktu sajak-sajaknya selalu mendapat tanggapan dari para pembaca sastra termasuk para kritikus, tanggapan tersebut bermacam-macam berdasarkan horizon jawaban masing-masing pembaca atau horizon harapan pembaca pada tiap periode.
13.Tanggapan Pembaca Terhadap Belenggu.
Melalui tanggapan pembaca dari waktu ke waktu ini maka karya sastra lebih terungkap dan nilai sastranyapun dapat ditentukan dengan lebih baik. Belenggu dari waktu ke waktu selalu mendapat tanggapan yang berbeda, bahkan juga pada waktu terbitnya(1940). Menurut Mr. Dajoh dalam Pradopo(2005: 236) Belenggu adalah buku modern, bahkan paling modern, amat baru penyajian isinya, disamping itu juga amat baru bentuk gambaran mengenai masyarakatnya dan kehidupan yang digambarkan pengaranganya.



2. Prinsip-Prinsip Kritik Sastra Karya Prof. Dr. Rachmat Joko Pradopo

Dalam bukunya prinsip-prinsip kritik sastra Rachmad Joko Pradopo menjabarkan beberapa teori kritik sastra dan pelaksanaanya dalam kritik sastra modern. Pada awal-awal buku diulas tentang apa, bagaimana, seperti apa,hingga bentuk-bentuk kritik sastra. Adapun karya sastra yang dikritik dalam buku ini cukup banyak sekali. Seperti H.B Jasin, Amal Hamzah, Ajip Rosidi, J.U Nasution, Junus Amir Hamzah, Boen Oemajati, dan M.S. Hutagalung. Di dalam buku yang setebal 211 halaman ini banyak sekali mengulas serta membicarakan karya sastra yang bersangkut paut soal penilaian. Menurut Rachmat Joko Pradopo sendiri, kritik sastra adalah ilmu sastra yang berusaha menyelidiki karya sastra dengan langsung menganalisis, memberi pertimbangan, baik-buruknya karya sstra, bernilai seni atau tidaknya.
Sedangkan seorang kritikus menurut Rachmat Joko Pradopo sendiri adalah “hakim” harus berpegang teguh pada kebenaran juga kejujuran karena ia haruslah adil. Jadi dalam menilai ia haruslah objektif dan dapat melepaskan perasaan senang dan tidak senangnya. Ia hanya mencari kebenaran, tidak menambah-nambah, tidak pula menguranginya bila baik dikatakan baik, dengan alasan dan sandaran-sandaran yang dapat diterima akal dan budi manusia.
Pada pokoknya kritik sastra mempunyai tiga kegunaan diantaranya; pertama, berguna bagi ilmu sastra sendiri, kedua bagi perkembangan ilmu kesusastraan dan yang ketiga berguna bagi masyarakat pada umumnya yang mengininkan penerangan dalam karya sastra. Sedangkan menurut bentuknya kritik sastra terbagi menjadi kritik teori, kritik praktik dan kritik terapan. Kemudian jika dilihat dari pelaksanaanya, kritik oleh Abrams dibagi menjadi kritik judisial, dan kritik immpresionistik. Sedangkan berdasarkan pendekatannya terhadap karya sastra Abrams membagi kritik sastra kedalam empat tipe. Kritik mimetik, kritik pragmatik, kritik ekspresif, dan kritik objektif.
Dari sini terlihat betapa pentingnya kritik sastra itu, apalagi dalam kesusastraan Indonesia yang masih muda. Selain itu kritik sastra berguna pula untuk menyusun ilmu sastra, berguna pula untuk para penulis muda yang sedang memperkembangkan bakatnya. Sangat menyenangkan apabila khasanah sastra Indonesia bertambah dengan terbitnya buku semacan prinsip-prinsip kritik sastra karya Rachmad Joko Pradopo.
          SOFTWARE LKM GAPOKTAN PUAP        
Kepada yth : semua Pengurus Gapoktan PUAP, PMT, Tim Teknis ,Penyuluh Pendamping, dan semua anggota kelompok tani, diseluruh indonesia dimanapun anda berada, telah diciptakan software lembaga keuangan mikro ( LKM ) agribisnis, untuk mempermudah semua akses pencatatan dan pengelolaan administrasi dan keuangan gapoktan dengan nama SIM Gapoktan sistem Informasi Managemen Gapoktan. yang bisa langsung diakses dan didownload di :www.digitalsense.com aktifasi menghubungi PMT masing2 kabupaten / kota diseluruh indonesia.

          BUDI DAYA JAMUR DI DAERAH PANAS        



Menekuni bisnis budidaya jamur tiram memang sangat menguntungkan. Tingginya permintaan pasar dan mudahnya proses budidaya jamur tiram menjadi salah satu alasan mengapa jenis jamur ini lebih sering dibudidayakan masyarakat dibandingkan jenis jamur lainnya. Meskipun begitu, sampai hari ini ada sebuah kendala yang sering dihadapi para pemula dalam menjalankan bisnis budidaya jamur tiram. Yaitu faktor pemilihan lokasi budidaya yang sesuai dengan habitat hidup jamur tersebut.

Biasanya pertumbuhan jamur tiram akan optimal sepanjang tahun bila lokasi budidayanya sesuai dengan habitat aslinya, yakni di kawasan pegunungan atau di daerah dataran dengan ketinggian antara 400-800 meter di atas permukaan air laut (mdpl), serta memiliki suhu udara sekitar 20-28°C dengan tingkat kelembapan sekitar 70% sampai 80%. Lalu bisakah jamur tiram dibudidayakan di daerah panas?

Bagi Anda yang berada di daerah dataran rendah khususnya di lingkungan yang cukup panas, kini tidak perlu takut lagi untuk mencoba budidaya jamur tiram. Sebab ada banyak cara yang bisa Anda lakukan untuk menyiasati kondisi lingkungan di sekitar Anda. Untuk mengetahui informasi selengkapnya, mari kita bahas bersama beberapa tips bisnis yang bisa Anda gunakan untuk membudidayakan jamur tiram di daerah panas.


Pertama, langkah mudah yang bisa Anda coba yaitu membuat bangunan kumbung jamur dengan sistem sirkulasi buka tutup. Yang dimaksud buka tutup disini adalah menutup sirkulasi kumbung jamur di siang hari agar kelembapan di dalamnya tetap terjaga, dan membukanya pada malam hari sehingga suhu ruangan di dalam kumbung jamur bisa lebih dingin.

Kedua, gunakan bahan atap yang tidak menyerap panas. Hal ini penting agar intensitas sinar matahari yang masuk ke dalam kumbung jamur tidak berlebihan. Beberapa bahan yang bisa Anda gunakan sebagai atap kumbung jamur antara lain anyaman bambu, atau genteng.

Ketiga, faktor kelembapan merupakan syarat utama yang harus terpenuhi dalam budidaya jamur tiram, sebab kelembapan udara sangat berpengaruh pada pertumbuhan jamur. Untuk mengatasi hal tersebut, Anda bisa meletakkan beberapa tong/wadah air di dalam kumbung jamur untuk meningkatkan kelembapan ruangan.

Keempat, karena lokasi budidaya jamur berada di daerah panas, maka usahakan untuk membuat bangunan kumbung di tempat yang teduh atau dekat dengan pepohonan. Selain itu hindari pula pembuatan pintu kumbung yang berada di arah matahari terbit atau terbenam, hal ini dilakukan untuk mencegah sinar matahari langsung masuk ke ruangan kumbung.

Kelima, lindungi sekitar lokasi kumbung dari sinar matahari langsung yang terlalu menyengat. Anda bisa melakukannya dengan cara menanam banyak pohon rindang (perdu) disekeliling kumbung jamur.

Keenam, untuk memperlancar sirkulasi udara di dalam kumbung jamur tiram, usahakan tinggi bangunan kumbung dibuat lebih tinggi atau tidak kurang dari 4 meter.

Ketujuh, perhatikan rak penyimpanan baglog jamur yang dibuat. Bila di daerah dingin rak yang dibuat pada kumbung jamur bisa mencapai 5 tingkat, pastikan rak yang dibuat di daerah panas tidak lebih dari 3 tingkat.

Kedelapan, karena lokasi kumbung jamur berada di daerah panas, maka sebisa mungkin lakukan penyiraman lebih sering dibandingkan di daerah pegunungan. Penyiraman baglog jamur bisa Anda lakukan minimal 3 kali dalam sehari.


Nah, dengan demikian Anda tidak perlu khawatir jika ingin mmbudidayakan jamur tiram tetapi daerah Anda merupakan daerah yang panas. Silahkan mencoba peluang bisnis jamur dimanapun Anda tinggal. Mulai dari yang kecil, mulai dari yang mudah, mulai dari sekarang! Salam sukses.
          SENTRA DURIAN NGEMBAL        
Durian Unggulan





DURIAN MONTHONG
Family Bombacaceae
Deskripsi
Durian ini berasal dari Thailand. Tanaman Durian monthong merupakan tanaman genjah. Mampu berproduksi pada umur 4-5 tahun sejak ditanam dengan bibit asal sambung pucuk. Produksi buahnya cukup banyak. Mampu beradaptasi pada berbagai tempat. Sayangnya, tanaman ini tidak mempunyai ketahanan terhadap penyakit Phytophthora .sp. Bentuk buah bervariasi, dari bulat panjang sampai hampir persegi. Durinya besar dan tersusun jarang. Bobot buahnya mampu mencapai 6 kg. Kulitnya tebal dengan warna hij au. juringnya ada 5. Warna daging buah ada yang kuning emas, ada pula yang krem. Dagingnya sangat tebal dengan rasa manis legit dan aroma harum sedang.
Manfaat
Buah durian matang, atau tepatnya arilusnya, yang merupakan bagian yang dapat dimakan, umumnya dikonsumsi dalam keadaan segar. Di pasar, buah durian ini mengiklankan diri melalui baunya yang keras dan khas. Buah durian sangat disukai orang, sehingga panen padi di Indonesia akan terbengkalai jika bertepatan dengan panen buah durian, dan sampai puncak masa panen durian orang-orang masih bernafsu besar untuk memakannya. Buah durian diawetkan dengan cara mengeringkan daging buahnya menjadi kue durian, atau diolah menjadi dodol; dapat pula difermentasi atau dijadikan asinan. Kini arilus durian juga diciutkan dan dibungkus, lalu dibekukan untuk memperpanjang penyediaan durian; dengan cara ini buah durian dapat diterima di pasaran ekspor. Rasa durian lebih disenangi di dalam es krim dan kue-kue. Biji durian yang direbus atau dibakar dimakan sebagai makanan kecil. Pucuk muda dan buahnya yang masih muda dapat dimasak untuk lalap. Kulit buah yang dikeringkan digunakan sebagai bahan bakar, terutama untuk mengasapi ikan. Beberapa bagian pohon durian dimanfaatkan sebagai obat; buah durian dianggap dapat menyembuhkan kesehatan orang atau hewan yang sakit. Menurut kepercayaan yang umum dianut, orang yang memakan durian dibarengi dengan minuman beralkohol dapat menyebabkan sakit atau bahkan mematikan. Kayunya yang kasar dan ringan tidak tahan lama, tetapi dapat digunakan untuk konstruksi dalam rumah clan perkakas rumah yang murahan.
Syarat Tumbuh
Tanaman durian dapat tumbuh di dataran rendah sampai ketinggian 1.000 m di atas permukaan laut. Namun, produksi terbaiknya dicapai jika penanaman dilakukan pada ketinggian 400-600 m di atas permukaan laut. Tanaman ini menyukai daerah yang beriklim basah atau tempat-tempat yang banyak turun hujan. Jenis tanah yang baik untuk pertumbuhannya yaitu tanah yang lembap, subur, gembur, tak bercadas, dan kedalaman air tanahnya tidak lebih dari 1 m.
Pedoman Budidaya
Di Indonesia, sebagian besar durian masih ditumbuhkan dari benih, walaupun beberapa cara perbanyakan klon telah dipraktekkan pula. Di Filipina, perbanyakan dengan benih telah diganti dengan penyambungan sanding (inarching) dan penyambungan celah (cleft grafting). Di Thailand, pembibitan-pembibitan menghasilkan sejumlah besar 1′pohon durian melalui dua cara. Penyusuan secara tradisional mungkin merupakan penyambungan sanding yang cukup sederhana dan sangat tinggi persentase keberhasilannya; caranya ‘ialah batang bawah yang dipelihara dalam kantung dibuntungi dan disisipkan ke cabang kecil pada tanaman induknya. Cara lainnya ialah penyambungan hipokotil, menggunakan semai dalam pot, berumur 5-6 minggu, yang disambung-celah dengan batang atas-mini yang dipotong dari pucuk lateral yang tipis saja. Perlakuan fungisida, terowongan plastik, dan naungan berat sangat diperlukan untuk melindungi jaringan yang masih rapuh. Lima orang pekerja yang berpengalaman dapat mengerjakan 300 sambungan, dikerjakan dari pukul 8 malam sampai tengah malam ; menghindari panasnya siang hari konon merupakan faktor penting alam mencapai tingkat keberhasilan di atas 90176. Benih durian kv. ‘Chanee’ biasa digunakan di Thailand untuk meningkatkan penyediaan batang bawah. Anakan durian dapat ditanam di lapangan seteiah berumur 1 tahun, dengan jarak tanam 8-16 m. Pada tahun pertama diperlukan naungan. Pada jarak tanam yang lebih rapat, mungkin kebun durian itu perlu penjarangan setelah 8-1
Pemeliharaan


Gulma dibabat dan dibiarkan sebagai mulsa, tetapi lahan di bawah kanopi pohon diusahakan bebas dari gulma. Penyedotan hara sampai saat panen berjumlah 2,4 kg N, 0,4 kg P, 4,2 kg K, 0,3 kg Ca, dan 0,5 kg Mg per ton buah, tetapi penyedotan hara total belum pernah diteliti. Praktek di Thailand ialah memberikan pupuk majemuk dekat dengan garis-tetes segera setelah muncul kuncup bunga, ditunjang dengan pemberian pupuk di atas tanah jika telah ada pembentukan buah yang lebat; pemberian pupuk lainnya dilakukan setelah panen. Jika tersedia pupuk kandang, dapat menggantikan pemberian pupuk yang terakhir.
Hama dan Penyakit
Penyakit busuk akar, penyakit busuk pangkal batang, atau kanker-bintik (patch canker), yang disebabkan oleh Phytophthora palmivora, merupakan pembunuh yang ditakuti. Jamur ini hidup di dalam tanah dan memperlemah pohon dengan cara menginfeksi akar. Infeksi bagian di atas permukaan tanah juga terjadi, barangkali terutama disebabkan oleh cipratan partikel-partikel tanah. Pohon durian akan mati jika infeksi pada pangkal batang lama-lama melukai keliling batang pohon itu. Untuk memberantas penyakit ini, pangkal batang diusahakan bebas dari tunas-tunas lateral setinggi 1 m atau lebih, lahan sekitar pohon agar bebas dari gulma, dan pengairan hendaknya tidak membasahi pangkal batang atau tanah yang dekat situ, juga air penyiraman dari satu pohon tidak membasahi pohon lain. Semacam pasta fungisida (sistemik) dicatkan pada pangkal batang durian, dan pohonnya hendaknya seringkali diperiksa, bagian yang terinfeksi agar dipotong dan bekas lukanya dibersihkan. Penyakit-penyakit lain, seperti bintik daun yang disebabkan oleh Colletotrichum spp., Homortegia durionir dan Phyllorticta durionir, dan busuk buah (Rhizopus sp.), tidak begitu berarti. Berbagai hama telah diamati menyerang durian, tetapi kerusakannya tampaknya hanya kadang-kadang. Suatu ulat pengebor buah, Hypoperigea (Plagideicta) lepro.rtricta, memakan biji durian, dan tampaknya lebih sering terjadi. Mamalia, seperti tikus, babi hutan, dan beruang, senang sekali memakan buah durian, dan buahbuah yang berjatuhan harus dikumpulkan setiap pagi agar mengurangi kerugian.
Panen dan Pasca Panen
Panen Pohon durian tumbuh sangat tinggi, dan karena sulit menerka matangnya buah, praktek yang umum dilakukan ialah menunggu sampai buah itu berjatuhan. Pemanenan secara selektif itu perlu, dan pemetik yang berpengalaman menggunakan berbagai kriteria untuk menaksir kematangan buah durian. Diawali dari jumlah hari yang telah dilewati sejak bunga mekar, mereka juga mungkin memperhatikan warna, elastisitas dan letaknya duri, intensitas bau yang keluar dari buah, suara yang terdengar jika jari-jari dijentikkan pada alur-alur di antara duri, perubahan pada tangkai buah, dan uji-apung di air. Penanganan pasca panen Berkat kulitnya yang kuat, pengangkutan buah durian dipermudah, tetapi adanya duri-duri itu menyulitkan penanganannya; buah ini perlu dipegang tangkainya. Buah yang telah pecah sewaktu jatuh ke tanah, cepat sekali rusak, arilusnya menjadi tengik dalam waktu 36 jam saja. Buah yang masih bertangkai, yang dipungut dari bawah pohonnya masih dapat dimakan setelah 2-3 hari, tetapi jika daya tahan buah yang telah dipungut itu dapat diperpanjang sekitar 1 minggu lagi, hal ini akan merupakan keuntungan yang besar. Buah durian harus segera diangkut ke pasar, diwadahi karung, keranjang bambu atau ditumpuk saja dalam bak truk. Ruang pendingin bersuhu 15° C dapat memperpanjang daya tahan, buah durian selama 3 minggu, dan daging buah yang dibekukan secara cepat akan dapat mempertahankan rasanya selama 3 bulan atau lebih
          E-KTP KAB. PASURUAN        


e-KTP atau KTP Elektronik adalah dokumen kependudukan yang memuat sistem keamanan / pengendalian baik dari sisi administrasi ataupun teknologi informasi dengan berbasis pada database kependudukan nasional.

Penduduk hanya diperbolehkan memiliki 1 (satu) KTP yang tercantum Nomor Induk Kependudukan (NIK). NIK merupakan identitas tunggal setiap penduduk dan berlaku seumur hidup

Nomor NIK yang ada di e-KTP nantinya akan dijadikan dasar dalam penerbitan Paspor, Surat Izin Mengemudi (SIM), Nomor Pokok Wajib Pajak (NPWP), Polis Asuransi, Sertifikat atas Hak Tanah dan penerbitan dokumen identitas lainnya (Pasal 13 UU No. 23 Tahun 2006 tentang Adminduk).
Tata Cara Penerbitan KTP Elektronik Bagi WNI Secara Massal. Semoga Bermanfaat:
Kepala Dinas Kependudukan dan Pencatatan Sipil Kabupaten/Kota membuat dan menyerahkan daftar Penduduk WNI wajib KTP kepada Camat atau nama lain
Camat atau nama lain menandatangani surat panggilan penduduk berdasarkan daftar penduduk WNI wajib KTP
Petugas di kecamatan atau nama lain melalui kepala desa/lurah atau nama lain menyampaikan surat panggilan kepada Penduduk WNI wajib KTP
Penduduk yang telah menerima surat panggilan, mendatangi tempat pelayanan KTP Elektronik dengan membawa surat panggilan, Fc. KK dan KTP lama bagi yang sudah memiliki KTP
Petugas di tempat pelayanan KTP Elektronik melakukan verifikasi data penduduk secara langsung di tempat pelayanan KTP Elektronik
Petugas operator melakukan pengambilan dan perekaman pas photo, tanda tangan, dan sidik jari penduduk
Petugas di tempat pelayanan KTP Elektronik membubuhkan tanda tangan dan stempel tempat pelayanan KTP Elektronik pada surat panggilan penduduk
Surat panggilan Penduduk dimaksud sebagai bukti telah dilakukan verifikasi, pengambilan dan perekaman pas photo, tanda tangan dan sidik jari penduduk
Petugas operator melakukan penyimpanan data dan biodata penduduk ke dalam database di tempat pelayanan KTP Elektronik
Data yang disimpan dalam database dikirim melalui jaringan komunikasi data ke server Automated Fingerprint Identification System di data center Kemendagri
Data penduduk disimpan dan dilakukan proses identifikasi ketunggalan jatidiri seseorang
Hasil identifikasi sidik jari sebagaimana dimaksud pada huruf k, apabila :
1. identitas tunggal, data dikembalikan ke tempat pelayanan KTP Elektronik
2. identitas ganda, dilakukan klarifikasi dengan tempat pelayanan KTP Elektronik
Kementerian Dalam Negeri melalui Direktorat Jenderal Kependudukan dan Pencatatan Sipil melakukan personalisasi data yang sudah diidentifikasi ke dalam blangko KTP Elektronik
Setelah dilakukan personalisasi, Kementerian Dalam Negeri melalui Direktorat Jenderal Kependudukan dan Pencatatan Sipil mendistribusikan KTP Elektronik ke Dinas Kependudukan dan Pencatatan Sipil Kabupaten/Kota untuk diteruskan ke tempat pelayanan KTP Elektronik
Petugas di tempat pelayanan KTP Elektronik, menerima KTP Elektronik dan melakukan verifikasi melalui pemadanan sidik jari penduduk 1 : 1
Hasil verifikasi sidik jari penduduk dapat terjadi :
1. Apabila data sidik jari penduduk sama maka KTP Elektronik diberikan kepada penduduk
2. Apabila data sidik jari penduduk tidak sama maka KTP Elektronik tidak dapat diberikan kepada penduduk, dan selanjutnya penduduk yang bersangkutan mengurus kembali ke Dinas Kependudukan dan Pencatatan Sipil Kab./ Kota .
KTP yang tidak sesuai dgn sidik jari penduduk tersebut, dikembalikan oleh Petugas di tempat pelayanan KTP Elektronik ke Kementerian Dalam Negeri dalam hal ini Direktorat Jenderal Kependudukan dan Pencatatan Sipil melalui Dinas Kependudukan dan Pencatatan Sipil Kabupaten/Kota untuk dimusnahkan
Penduduk dapat mengambil KTP Elektronik dgn membawa surat panggilan.
(sumber: dispencapil.pasuruankab.go.id)

          Miras Bebas, Maksiat dan Kejahatan Makin Bablas        



Bebas, Maksiat dan Kejahatan Makin Bablas
[Al Islam 589] Bukannya mencegah kemaksiatan, pemerintah malah memberikan jalan bagi suburnya kemaksiatan dan kerusakan di tengah masyarakat. Lihatlah, pemerintah justru mencabut perda yang melarang miras (minuman keras).

Setidaknya ada sembilan perda miras yang diminta untuk dicabut oleh kemendagri. Diantaranya, Perda Kota Tangerang No. 7/2005 tentang Pelarangan, Pengedaran, dan Penjualan Minuman Beralkohol; Perda Kota Bandung No. 11/2010 tentang Pelarangan, Pengawasan, dan Pengendalian Minuman Beralkohol; dan Perda Kabupaten Indramayu No. 15/2006 tentang Larangan Minuman Beralkohol.

Keputusan itu memicu protes dan penolakan dari banyak pihak. Keputusan pencabutan itu dianggap kontraproduktif terhadap upaya mengatasi kerusakan moralitas dan maraknya kejahatan di tengah masyarakat. Protes keras juga datang dari sejumlah Pemda yang telah mengeluarkan perda miras.

Melawan Hukum Lebih Tinggi?

Kemendagri beralasan pencabutan perda-perda miras itu karena menyalahi aturan yang lebih tinggi, yaitu Keppres No. 3 Tahun 1997 tentang Pengawasan dan Pengendalian Minuman Beralkohol. Sejak perda dinyatakan batal maka dalam waktu paling lama 15 hari harus dicabut dan tak diberlakukan. Seperti diberitakan pikiran-rakyat.com (31/11/11), melalui surat nomor: 188.34/4561/SJ tertanggal 16 November 2011, Mendagri meminta perda miras kabupaten Indramayu segera dicabut dalam waktu 15 hari sejak 16 November.

Alasan bertentangan dengan Keppres No. 3 Tahun 1997 itu terkesan dipaksakan. Keppres itu dikeluarkan pada era orde baru yang sarat masalah. Mestinya Keppres bermasalah itu yang harus dicabut. Sebab Keppres itulah yang justru menjadi biang kerok maraknya peredaran miras di tengah masyarakat. Apalagi adanya Keppres ini berarti menghalalkan perkara yang jelas-jelas diharamkan Allah SWT. Lebih tinggi mana hukum Allah SWT dibanding keputusan presiden? Mana yang lebih baik, hukum Allah SWT atau hukum jahiliyah yang bersumber dari hawa nafsu manusia yang rakus?

Motif Bisnis Haram

Aroma kuatnya pengaruh bisnis miras pun menyeruak. Sudah lama para pengusaha miras mengeluhkan kesulitan memasarkan produk mereka karena adanya perda pelarangan miras dan menambah jumlah produksi miras akibat pembatasan produksi. Padahal Indonesia dianggap pangsa pasar miras potensial. Menurut catatan Gabungan Industri Minuman Malt Indonesia (GIMMI) orang Indonesia mengkonsumsi 100 juta liter bir pertahun. Jumlah konsumen minuman keras domestik terus meningkat 3-4 % pertahun, belum lagi dengan bertambahnya kunjungan wisatawan asing. Maka pengusaha miras ingin agar pembatasan miras dilonggarkan dan kuota produksinya ditambah.

Keputusan kontroversial Kemendagri ini menjadi jalan bagi mulusnya bisnis miras itu. Selama ini yang pertama-tama menentang perda larangan miras adalah pengusaha miras. Perda miras kabupaten Indramayu misalnya, sempat digugat oleh kalangan pengusaha minuman beralkohol dan miras. Namun gugatan tersebut ditolak oleh MA.


Sumber Kejahatan

Pencabutan perda miras ini menambah keberpihakan pemerintah pada bisnis haram ini. Dua tahun silam pemerintah sudah menetapkan miras terbebas dari Pajak Pertambahan Nilai dan Pajak Penjualan atas Barang Mewah (PPN dan PPnBM). Hal ini menunjukkan lagi-lagi pemerintah lebih memikirkan kepentingan segelintir pengusaha bejad yang hanya memikirkan uang, dibanding keselamatan dan moralitas masyarakat. Padahal semuanya sudah tahu dan terbukti, miras pangkal berbagai macam kejahatan. Baru-baru ini, seorang ibu diperkosa di sebuah angkot di Depok, dan pelakunya diberitakan dalam keadaan mabuk. Kejahatan seperti ini sering terjadi. Polres Minahasa Utara mencatat, dari 969 kasus kejahatan dan KDRT sepanjang 2011 di wilayahnya dipicu oleh minuman keras (TRIBUNMANADO.CO.ID, 5/1/2012).

Polda Sulawesi Utara juga melaporkan sekitar 70 % tindak kriminalitas umum di Sulawesi Utara terjadi akibat mabuk setelah mengonsumsi miras. Kabid Humas Polda Sulut Ajun Komisaris Besar Benny Bela di Manado mengatakan, masih tingginya tindak kriminalitas di daerah itu disebabkan oleh minuman keras. Diperkirakan 65-70 % tindak kriminalitas umum di daerah itu akibat mabuk minuman keras. Selain itu sekitar 15 persen kecelakaan lalu lintas juga akibat pengaruh minuman keras. (lihat, kompas.com, 21/1/2011).

Miras juga menjadi pemicu beberapa tawuran massal seperti yang pernah terjadi di beberapa daerah dan hingga menyebabkan sejumlah korban tewas. Begitu juga tak sedikit orang yang tewas setelah menenggak miras.

Maka sungguh aneh bila pemerintah justru mencabut perda miras yang sebenarnya masih terlalu longgar itu. Padahal fakta yang ada sejak perda miras diberlakukan terjadi penurunan angka kriminalitas, bahkan sampai 80 % seperti di Bulukumba. Di Indramayu dan Tangerang penerapan perda miras berhasil mengurangi angka kriminalitas secara nyata.

Apalagi, perda-perda itu sebelumnya sudah dikonsultasikan ke tingkat provinsi dan bahkan ke Kemendagri dan dinilai tidak masalah. Perda anti miras itu didukung dan diterima oleh masyarakat. Perda itu juga dihasilkan melalui proses demokratis dan disetujui oleh DPRD setempat. Sekali lagi, pencabutan perda miras ini makin menunjukkan keanehan demokrasi. Kalau benar-benar memperhatikan suara rakyat seharusnya perda miras yang dihasilkan secara demokratis itu diterima. Kenapa malah ditolak dan dianggap tidak demokratis?

Aroma anti syariah Islam pun muncul dibalik ini . Mengingat selama ini, perda-perda seperti ini kerap digugat kelompok sekuler liberal karena dianggap kental dengan syariah Islam. Mereka menuding syariah Islam mengancam negara. Tudingan yang tidak masuk akal. Bagaimana mungkin syariah Islam yang bersumber dari Allah SWT yang Maha Pengasih lagi Maha Penyayang disebut membahayakan masyarakat? Bagaimana mungkin aturan Allah SWT yang melarang miras yang menjadi salah satu sumber kejahatan dianggap membahayakan masyarakat ?

Syariah Islam Membabat Miras, Menyelamatkan Umat

Islam dengan tegas mengharamkan khamr. Allah SWT berfirman:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا إِنَّمَا الْخَمْرُ وَالْمَيْسِرُ وَالْأَنصَابُ وَالْأَزْلَامُ رِجْسٌ مِّنْ عَمَلِ الشَّيْطَانِ فَاجْتَنِبُوهُ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ
Hai orang-orang yang beriman, sesungguhnya (meminum) khamar, berjudi, berkorban untuk berhala, mengundi nasib dengan panah, adalah termasuk perbuatan syaitan. Maka jauhilah perbuatan-perbuatan itu agar kamu mendapat keberuntungan. (QS. al-Maidah [5]: 90)

Syaikh Ali ash-Shabuniy di dalam Tafsir ayat al-ahkam (I/562) menyatakan bahwa ayat berikutnya menyebutkan berbagai keburukan untuk mengisyaratkan bahaya yang besar dan kejahatan materi dari kriminalitas perjudian dan meminum khamr. Allah berfirman (yang artinya): Sesungguhnya syaitan itu bermaksud hendak menimbulkan permusuhan dan kebencian di antara kamu lantaran (meminum) khamar dan berjudi itu, dan menghalangi kamu dari mengingat Allah dan shalat; maka berhentilah kamu (TQS al-Maidah [5]:91)

Rasul saw. juga sudah memperingatkan:

« اِجْتَنِبُوْا الْخَمْرَ فَإِنَّهَا مِفْتَاحُ كُلِّ شَرٍّ »
Jauhilah khamr, karena sesungguhnya ia adalah kunci semua keburukan (HR. al-Hakim dan al-Baihaqi)

Islam memandang, meminum khamr merupakan kemaksiyatan besar dan pelakunya harus dijatuhi sanksi had. Had meminum khamr adalah dijilid empat puluh kali dan bisa ditambah. Ali bin Abi Thalib mengatakan:

« جَلَدَ النَّبِىُّ أَرْبَعِينَ وَجَلَدَ أَبُو بَكْرٍ أَرْبَعِينَ وَعُمَرُ ثَمَانِينَ وَكُلٌّ سُنَّةٌ »
Nabi saw menjilid (orang yang meminum khamr) 40 kali, Abu Bakar menjilidnya 40 kali dan Umar menjilidnya 80 kali, dan semua adalah sunnah (HR Muslim)


Islam juga mengharamkan semua hal yang terkait dengan khamr (miras), termasuk produksi, penjualan, kedai dan hasil darinya, dsb. Rasul saw bersabda:

« لَعَنَ اللَّهُ الْخَمْرَ وَلَعَنَ شَارِبَهَا وَسَاقِيَهَا وَعَاصِرَهَا وَمُعْتَصِرَهَا وَبَائِعَهَا وَمُبْتَاعَهَا وَحَامِلَهَا وَالْمَحْمُولَةَ إِلَيْهِ وَآكِلَ ثَمَنِهَ »
Allah melaknat khamr dan melaknat orang yang meminumnya, yang menuangkannya, yang memerasnya, yang minta diperaskan, yang membelinya, yang menjualnya, yang membawakannya, yang minta dibawakan, yang makan harganya (HR. Ahmad).

Karena itu sistem Islam akan melarang produksi khamr (miras), penjualannya, tempat-tempat yang menjualnya, peredarannya dsb. Orang yang melanggarnya berarti melakukan tindakan kriminal dan dia harus dikenai sanksi ta’zir.

Dengan semua itu, syariah Islam menghilangkan pasar miras, membabat produksi miras, penjualan, peredarannya dan tempat penjualannya di tengah masyarakat. Dengan itu Islam menutup salah satu pintu semua keburukan. Islam menyelamatkan masyarakat dari semua bahaya yang mungkin timbul karena khamr.

Wahai Kaum Muslim

Pencabutan perda miras ini menunjukkan kebobrokan pemerintah. Pemerintah justru telah memberikan jalan bagi maraknya kejahatan dan kemaksiatan di tengah masyarakat. Sekaligus semakin membuktikan bahwa masyarakat yang bebas dari bahaya khamr (miras) tidak akan terwujud dengan sistem kapitalisme demokrasi. Sistem Kapitalis-Demokrasi hanya memikirkan pemilik modal, hanya memikirkan perut dan materi segelintir pengusaha rakus. Sistem ini tidak akan memberikan kebaikan sedikitpun kepada manusia.

Bahaya khamr dan semua keburukan akibat khamr hanya akan bisa dihilangkan dari masyarakat dengan penerapan syariah Islam secara utuh. Karena itu impian kita akan masyarakat yang tenteram, bersih, bermartabat dan bermoral tinggi, hendaknya mendorong kita melipatgandakan perjuangan untuk menerapkan syariah Islam dalam bingkai Sistem Politik yang telah ditetapkan oleh Islam yaitu Khilafah ‘ala minhaj an-nubuwwah. Wallâh a’lam bi ash-shawâb. []

Komentar Al Islam:
BURT DPR: Proyek Toilet DPR Rp 2 M Bisa Dibatalkan (detik.com, 9/1/2012).

Komentar:

1. Innalillahi wa inna ilayhi rajiun, sampai urusan buang kotoran pun anggota parlemen masih juga mau bermewah-mewah, padahal di Indonesia masih ada tunawisma sebanyak 25.662 orang dan pengemis 175.478 orang.

2. Rencana itu menunjukkan sifat asli rakus kemewahan. Bila diributkan baru merasa malu, tapi bila tidak maka maju terus pantang mundur. Itulah produk sistem politik demokrasikapitalisme.

3. Politisi dan penguasa yang sederhana dan peduli kepentingan rakyat hanya bisa diwujudkan oleh sistem politik mengutamakan pemeliharaan urusan rakyat, itulah Sistem Islam


Hasil survei Lembaga Survei Indonesia (LSI) yang menempatkan kinerja lembaga penegakan hukum kurun waktu 2011 jeblok hingga 44 persen (inilah.com, 9/1/2012).

Komentar:

1. Hukum buatan manusia memang tidak pernah berpihak pada keadilan, melainkan kepada yang membayar.

2. Hanya hukum Islam yang menjamin keadilan sempurna bagi setiap manusia tanpa pandang bulu dan agama.
                  
SERANGAN DDoS, CYBERMOSLEM.NET MAMPU BERTAHAN
REP
Muhibbuddin Al Insaniyah
| 14 Agustus 2010 | 11:48
71
4
Nihil.

Sejak dirilis pada tanggal 1 Agusus 2010,Cybermoslem.net sudah dibanjiri dengan register-register baru yang semakin hari semakin melimpah. Dari banyaknya pengguna baru yang berbondong-bondong masuk, ternyata disinyalir oleh admin cybermoslem sendiri, ada sebuah “serangan rudal” dari “pesawat tak berawak” yang dikendalikan dari luar negeri, yang sengaja atau tidak memang hendak membuat rusuh suasana aksesing terhadap cybermoslem.

“…akhirnya CMnet lumpuh selama hampir semalaman (jum’at, 13 Agustus 2010). Setelah seharian di serang secara bertubi dengan sistem serangan ddos yang membuat jaringan kami menjadi sangat sibuk”, demikian menurut admin cybermoslem dalam blognya.

Serangan DoS (Denial of Service) adalah jenis serangan terhadap sebuah komputer atau server di dalam suatu jaringan internet dengan cara menghabiskan sumber (resource) yang dimiliki oleh komputer tersebut sampai komputer tersebut tidak dapat menjalankan fungsinya dengan benar sehingga secara tidak langsung mencegah pengguna lain untuk memperoleh akses layanan dari komputer yang diserang tersebut. Serangan DoS ini berlangsung satu lawan satu, satu penyerang melawan satu akun pengguna yang valid dan aktif, dengan penyerangnya menggunakan peralatan komputer yang canggih, serta dukungan host yang handal, sehingga target sasaran bisa kacau aksesingnya. Serangan DDoS ( Distribution DoS) merupakan serangan DoS yang “diselenggarakan” secara “rombongan” dan konspiratif menggunakan banyak komputer handal dan kuat, menyerang server sasaran, sehingga server “dipaksa” untuk tidak dapat memberikan pelayanan akses bagi pengguna.

Kondisi awal downtime sebenarnya sudah penulis rasakan dan terdeteksi oleh penulis pada sekitar lebih kurang jam 16.00 WIB, hari Jumat tanggal 13 Agutus 2010 kemarin, dan penulis seketika itu langsung memberikan sinyal “hati’hati” ke pihak admin bahwa ada “kemungkinan” upaya penyerangan oleh hacker ke server cybermoslem. Jawaban admin sangat sederhana, “Allah yang akan menolongnya“.

Situasi server lumpuh total terjadi semalaman dari mulai lebih kurang jam 19.30 WIB. Setelah sholat tarawih, penulis menutup akun di cybermoslem beberapa jam kemudian. Sebenarnya, pada Jum’at, 13 Agustus 2010, dari pagi sampai sore, akses ke cybermoslem.net masih stabil. Tetapi mulai malam sekitar jam 19.30 WIB lebih, pada saat pengguna dan saat sebagian besar member CMnet sedang sholat Tarawih. dan akses ke cybermoslem.net mulai ada kendala dan beberapa waktu kemudian lumpuh total.

Cybermoslem masih mampu tegak bertahan, tidak terjadi kehancuran dan kematian total, sehingga pada tanggal 14 Agustus 2010 sudah bisa normal kembali. Diperkirakan serangan akan berulang-ulang, tetapi Insya Allah, serangan DDoS dan serangan bentuk lainnya teramat berat dan kecil kemungkinan membunuh cybermoslem.

Memperhatikan berita di atas, penulis teringat serangan terhadap www.millatfacebook.com (jejaring sosial di Pakistan), yang sampai sekarang akhirnya web tersebut mengalami kelumpuhan dan tidak dapat diakses. Gambar di bawah ini adalah kondisi “bangkai” terakhir pada Sabtu, 14 Agutus 2010.

Kondisi "Bangkai" terakhir MillatFacebook.com. Adminnya masih berusaha hidup kembali.

Millatfacebook.com diciptakan oleh pemuda Pakistan, pada akhir Mei 2010 yang lalu, khusus untuk memberi alternatif bagi jejaring sosial mania di Pakistan dan penduduk dunia lainnya, setelah terjadinya “gempa bumi Facebook” yang menggemparkan dunia dengan munculnya halaman propaganda “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day”.

Terlepas dari alasan apapun pendiriannya, seharusnya netter tidak menganggap bahwa hadirnya jejaring baru sebagai ancaman sehingga melakukan serangan-serangan terhadap server ataupun apapun yang berafiliasi ke jejaring tersebut. Melihat gambar millatfcebook di atas, sepertinya admin millatfacebook asalnya menggunakan server di wilayah Amerika Serikat. Letak server inilah yang akan memberikan kemudahan lalu lintas bagi penyerang.

Perbedaan dengan millatfacebook, cybermoslem memiliki server yang berada di Indonesia. Sehingga serangan-serangan apapun bisa diketahui sejak dini, kemudian menyiapkan pertahanan dan benteng yang handal dan kuat, agar serangan semacam DDoS tidak terulang kembali. Serangan apapun terhadap jejaring, bentengpertama dalam pertahanan di garda server. Jika servernya kuat dan handal, insya Allah semuanya lancar-lancar.

Serangan susulan bisa saja dan akan terjadi, tetapi dengan server berada di Indonesia, serangan tersebut tidak akan sampai melumpuhkan cybermoslem, sehingga bernasib sama seperti millatfacebook.com.

Penulis tidak akan membuat andaian siapa yang menyerang. Tetapi yang jelas, adalah pihak yang dirugikan atau yang akan dirugikan. Siapa pihak yang dirugikan dengan adanya cybermoslem, penulis memberikan “gambaran kemungkinan” ciri-cirinya, sebagai berikut :

  1. Web jejaring sosial yang memegang mainstream di Indonesia, dengan jumlah pengguna sekarang inimencapai sekitar 500 juta di seluruh dunia. Jejaring ini merasa sudah memiliki Indonesia, sudah mendakwa menjadi penyantun melalui kerjasama dengan beberapa penyedia layanan telekomunikasi yaitu dengan penyediaan “akses gratis” bagi pelanggannya.
  2. Adanya serangan dari pihak yang tidak suka ada nama jejaring berlabel “Islam” atau “Moslem”menjadi populer, apalagi memiliki potensi mengalahkan mainstream yang sudah ada. Adanya cybermoslem, besar atau kecil akan mulai membersihkan label umat Islam yang sekarang ini seakan menjadi sarang teroris. Cybermoslem menjelaskan kepada dunia bahwa umat Islam juga sebenarnya mampu dan bisa menjadi pelopor bagipersahabatan dan dengan gaya hidup Teknologi Informasi, berbaur bersama semua orang dari berbagai negara, ras dan agama, dengan menjunjung nilai perdamaian dan kemanusiaan. Dengah kata lain, serangan terhadap cybermoslem ini, adalah serangan terhadap nilai kemanusiaan dalam diri cybermoslem, yang jelas-jelas bermaksud damai dan santun serta beradab membuka silaturrohim dan persahabatan bersama berbagai jenis umat manusia di bumi ini.

Penulis tidak menyebut bahwa penyerang adalah “musuh Islam” walaupun semua jejaring yang diserang adalah didirikan dan terutama untuk umat Islam. Mereka lebih cenderung sebagai uji coba ketahanan dan reaksi atas hadirnya cybermoslem yang menggemuruh.

Bagi kita orang Indonesia, kita wajib berbangga dengan kerja saudara kita Dola Indra Putra Agam, yng sudah sedemikian hebat membuat jejaring sosial sendiri, untuk dipersembahkan bagi bumi pertiwi Indonesia dan umat Islam dunia. Jejaring yang berkode Joomla ini bebas dipergunakan oleh siapapun.

Mempertimbangkan akan adanya serangan-serangan berikutnya, harapan penulis, melalui tulisan ini, nantinya ada tokoh nasional Indonesia, baik dari kalangan pemerintahan, maupun Non Government Organisation (NGO) bisa segera memberikan dukungan moral dan material bagi kelangsungan cybermoslem, jejaring kebanggaan Indonesia, sehingga cybermoslem bisa menjadi number one di Indonesia, mengalahkan jejaring produk import luar negeri.

sumber :

http://sn.cybermoslem.net/blogs/viewstory/163

http://id.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serangan_DoS


          LATAR BELAKANG DAN SEJARAH JARINGAN KOMPUTER        
LATAR BELAKANG DAN SEJARAH
Sejarah jaringan komputer global ( dunia ), dimulaipada tahun 1969, ketika Departemen Pertahan Amerika, membentuk Defense Advance Research Projects Agency ( DARPA ) yang bertujuan mengadakan riset mengenai ‘cara menghubungkan sejumlah komputer sehingga membentuk jaringan organik’.

Program riset ini kemudian dikenal dengan nama ARPANET ( Advance Research projects Agency Network ). pada tahun 1970, lebih dari 10 komputer telah berhasil dihubungkan ( satu dengan yang lain ), saling berkomunikasi, dan membentuk sebuah jaringan. pada atahun 1972, Roy Tomlinson berhasil menyempurnakan program e-mail yang ia ciptakan setahun yang lalu untuk riset ARPANET.

Program e-mail tersebut begitu mudah dan lansung populer saat itu. pada tahun yang sama, icon [@] diperkenalkan sebagai lambang yang menunjukkan “at” atau “pada”. Tahun 1973, jaringan komputer yang diberi nama ARPANET mulai dikembangkan meluas sampai luar Amerika Serikat. komputer di University College di London merupakan komputer diluar Amerika yang menjadi anggota jaringan ARPANET. pada tahu yang sama pula, dua orang ahli komputer Vinton Cerf dan Bob Khan mempresentasikan sebuah gagasan yang lebih besar yang menjadi cikal bakal pemikiran International Network. ide ini dipresentasikan untuk pertama kalinya di Sussex University.
Hari bersejarah berikutnya terjadi pada tanggal 26 Maret 1976. ketika itu, ratu Inggris berhasil mengirimkan sebuah e-mail dari Royal Signals and Radar Establishment di Malvern. setahun kemudian, lebih dari 100 komputer telah bergabung dalam system ARPANET dan membentuk sebuah jaringan atau Network.
Pada tahun 1979, Tom Truscott, Jim Ellis, dan Steve Bellovin menciptakan Newsgroups pertama yang diberi nama USENET ( User Network ). pada tahun 1981, France Telecommenciptakan sebuah gebrakan baru dengan meluncurkan telepon televisi pertama dunia ( orang dapat saling menelepon sambil berinteraksi denagan Video link ).
seiring dengan bertambahnya komputer yang membentuk jaringan, dibutuhkan sebuah protokol resmi yang dapat diakui dan diterima oleh semua jaringan. untuk itu, pada tahun 1982 dibentuk sebuah komisi Transmission Control Protocol ( TCP ) atau lebih dikenal dengan sebutan Internet Protocol ( IP ) yang kita kenal hingga saat ini. sementara itu, didaratan Eropa muncul sebuah jaringan tandingan yang dikenal dengan Europe Network ( EUNET ) yang meliputi wilayah Belanda, Inggris, Denmark, dan Swedia. Jaringan eunet ini menyediakan jasa e-mail dan newsgroup USENET.

Untuk menyeragamkan alamat jaringan komputer yang sudah ada, pada tahun 1984 diperkenalkan system dengan nama DOMAIN yang lebih dikenal dengan Domain Name System ( DNS ). dengan system DNS, komputer yang tersambung dengan jaringan melebihi 1.000 komputer. pada tahun 1987 diperkirakan komputer yang tersambung ke jaringan tersebut melonjak 10 kali lipat menjadi 10.000 komputer lebih.
Tahun 1988, Jarkko Oikarinen berkebangsaan Finlandia menemukan sekaligus memperkenalkan Internet Relay Chat atau lebih dikenal dengan IRC yang memungkinkan dua orang atau lebih pengguna komputer dapat berinteraksi secara langsung dengan pengiriman pesan ( Chatting ). akibatnya, setahun kemudian jumlah komputer yang saling berhubungan melonjak 10 kali lipat. tak kurang dari 100.000 komputer membentuk sebuah jaringan.pertengahan tahun 1990 merupakan tahun yang paling bersejarah, ketika Tim Berners Lee merancang sebuah programe editor dan browser yang dapat menjelajai komputer yang satu dengan yang lainnya dengan membentuk jaringan. programe inilah yang disebut WWW atau World Wide Web.

Tahun 1992, komputer yang saling tersambung membentuk jaringan sudah melampaui lebih dari stau juta komputer. pada tahun yang sama muncul satu istilah yang beken, yaitu Surfing ( Menjelajah ). tahun 1994, situs-situs Dunia mulai tumbuh dengan subur ( setidaknya, saat itu terdapat 3.000 alamat halaman ) dan bentuk pertama kalinya Virtual Shopping atau e-retail muncul diberbagai situs. Dunia langsung berubah dengan diluncurkannya perusahaan Search Engine Pertama, yaitu Yahoo!. yang dibangun oleh David Filo dan Jerry yang pada bulan April 1994. Netscape Navigator 1.0. diluncurkan dipenghujung tahun 1994.


          KDE and NVidia (updated)        

KDE Project:

The above combination was never a painless experience, still at some point in past it seemed to be better to have a NVidia card on Linux then anything else, so I continued to buy them whenever my system was upgraded. Lately although it started to make me rather bad. I have two computers, one that is a 4 core Intel CPU with 8GB of memory, the other is a Core2Duo with 3GB. The latter is a Lenovo laptop. Both have NVidia, nothing high end (Qudaro NVS something and 9300GE, both used with dual monitor setup), but they should be more than enough for desktop usage. Are they?
Well, something goes wrong there. Is that KDE, is that XOrg, is that the driver? I suspect the latter. From time to time (read: often), I ended up with 100% CPU usage for XOrg. Even though I had 3 cores doing nothing the desktop was unusable. Slow scroll, scroll mouse movements, things typed appearing with a delay, things like that. Like I'd have an XT. I tried several driver version, as I didn't always have this issues, but with newer kernel you cannot go back to (too) old drivers. I googled, and found others having similar experience, with no real solution. A suspicion is font rendering for some (non-aliased) fonts, eg. Monospace. Switching fonts sometimes seemed to make a difference, but in the end, the bug returned. Others said GTK apps under Qt cause the problem, and indeed closing Firefox sometimes helped. But it wasn't a solution. Or there was a suggestion to turn the "UseEvents" option on. This really seemed to help, but broke suspend to disk. :( Turning off the second display and turning on again seemed to help...for a while. Turning off the composite manager did not change the situation.
Finally I tried the latest driver that appeared not so long ago, 256.44. And although the CPU usage of XOrg is still visible, with pikes going up to 20-40%, I gain back the control over the desktop. Am I happy with it? Well, not....
As this was only my desktop computer. I quickly updated the driver on the laptop as well, and went on the road. Just to see 100% CPU usage there. :( Did all the tricks again, but nothing helped. Until I had the crazy idea to change my widget theme from the default Oxygen to Plastique. And hurray, the problem went away! It is not perfect, with dual monitor enabled sometimes maximizing a konsole window takes seconds, but still in general the desktop is now usable. And of course this should also make me have more uptime on battery.
Do I blame Oxygen? No, not directly. Although might make sense to investigate what causes there the NVidia driver going crazy and report to NVidia.

So in case you have similar problems, try to switch to 256.44 and if it doesn't help chose a different widget style.

Now, don't say me to use nouveau or nv. Nouveau gave me graphic artifacts and it (or KDE?) didn't remember the dual card setup. Nv failed the suspend to disk test with my machine and doesn't provide 3D acceleration needed eg. for Google Earth.

UPDATE: I upgraded my laptop to 4.5.1 (from openSUSE packages).Well, this broke composition completely, I got only black windows. I saw a new driver is available (256.53), let's try it. So far, so good, even with Oxygen. Let's see on the long run how it behaves, I didn't test it in deep.


          KDE 4.2 - progress in a year        

KDE Project:

More than a year ago I wrote a post about KDE 4.0, I was quite unsatisfied with how in was and that we are going to release a product that has defects and in the eyes of the users will be a step back. I actually switched to KDE4 as my main desktop sometime during the 4.1 developing cycle. Since then I use KDE trunk on one machine and whatever my distro (openSUSE) provides on another one. There is always a shock when I have to use the distro packages. They did a very good job on integration and in many cases the distro package looks more polished than my self compiled one, still I was always liked the trunk version better. The improvement between 4.1.x and 4.0.x and 4.x.x and 4.1.x is just so big, using the older version is like going back several years. Not talking when I use KDE 3.5 on some other machines. I miss KDE 4.2 a lot in that case. Was it good that we released 4.0 a year ago? I think it was bad from PR point of view, but probably needed to actually have a 4.2 like the one will appear soon in the wild.
Yes, there are still issues, yes there are some applications that aren't ported or their port is not up to the expectations (yet). Luckily, unless your distribution did it wrong, it is possible to run the KDE3 applications under KDE4, without much hassle.
In the previous blog I complained about performance. My system is almost the same, except the video card is a newer one. And buying a new card at that time caused more trouble, and virtually no visible speedup at that time. Meantime the drivers improved (also due to KDE!), KDE improved (both kwin and plasma), and now I can use my system with effects enabled without thinking about performance. The current performance problems are actually caused by the flash plugin and its wrappers, in many case they start to use 100% CPU power. I'm not sure it can be fixed by us or the wrapper developers, what I know that both Konqueror and Firefox suffer from this problem. I just had to close down Firefox running in a KDE3 session because the X server for that session used completely one core.
I'm happy now with KDE4 and trunk already has some improvements compared to 4.2 that I enjoy. :) I'm amazed by the progress of KDE, aren't you amazed as well?

PS: If you miss Quanta being ported and you know C++/Qt, you should help. The only way to make it a KDE4 application is to finish the port, it won't happen magically if noone works on it. :(


          Rekompensaty za wypadki medyczne. Zaproponuje je minister zdrowia        
Pacjenci domagający się odszkodowań za błędy medyczne skazani bywają na lata procesów sądowych, które często dotkliwie uderzają w ich kieszeń, a wygrywa tylko garstka najwytrwalszych. Minister zdrowia zapowiada, że uporządkuje system dochodzenia odszkodowań nową ustawą, która ma być bardziej przyjazna dla pacjenta. Co ma na myśli?
          Grinding a cam for a model V4 engine by Joe Martin        

Joe Martin put together a cam grinder from mostly off-the-shelf Sherline components, a coolant pump and a few custom plumbing and bent brass pieces. He spent over 3 years developing the g-code software, which he wrote himself. The heart of the system is a 4″ grinding wheel driven by a Sherline headstock and a Sherline […]

The post Grinding a cam for a model V4 engine by Joe Martin appeared first on Millhill Supplies Ltd..


          Międzynarodowa ekspansja Badury ze wsparciem ERP Navireo        
BADURA – jeden z największych producentów obuwia w Polsce – rozwija sieć swoich salonów, wykorzystując system ERP Navireo firmy InsERT. Z rozwiązania korzysta już ponad 50 sklepów, w tym najnowszy w Pradze.
          Cedar Falls Practical Backyard Tour        
Sponsored by UNI's Center for Energy & Environmental Education and Green Iowa AmeriCorps, the Practical Backyard Tour highlights several backyards around Cedar Falls where practical and effective methods have been utilized.  From composting to solar and rain barrels to gardening, the tour features backyards that work!
Beginning at 2 p.m., participants are welcome to arrive at any of the  backyards listed below where tickets will be available (one ticket gains  participant access to all five backyards). After 5 p.m., participants are encouraged to visit Beck's on The Hill afterwards for dinner, a prize drawing, and open discussion on practical uses for backyards.
Tickets ($5, does not include dinner) will be available the day of the event at each of the backyards. Proceeds from the event will support Green Iowa AmeriCorps work in the Cedar Valley. Please direct any questions to Green Iowa AmeriCorps. We hope to see you there!
The five backyards featured during the tour include:
1. Cedar Falls Community Garden, 600 Block Lincoln Street, Cedar Falls “Taking Back, Giving
Back” this garden is flood-reclaimed land and features a sitting area, water collection
system, and composting [from Cup of Joe]. With 50 of the 80 available plots rented and four
organizations actively growing food to be donated to the Cedar Valley Food Bank and other
charities, this location is full of vast and diversified garden delights  growing for a great cause.
2. Dave Gibson, 524 West Lone Tree Road, Cedar Falls “Twin Cedars, a Gated  Community” this
wonderful stop in North Cedar will feature fruit trees, vegetable garden, hens, passive solar
kitchen, solar electric system, and 140 recently planted trees.
3. Kamyar Enshayan, 1703 Washington Street, Cedar Falls “Lawn & Order” featuring backyard
hens, easy-going compost, native prairie pollinator heaven, local wood  shed, solar hot water,
linear evaporative drying system (clothes lines), 20 years of pesticide-free lawn, vegetable
garden.
4. Jack & Carole Yates, 519 Chateau Ct, Cedar Falls “Perfectly Practical” both the front and back
yard features beds with native Iowa prairie plants, two vegetable gardens and an orchard with
apple, pear, Asian pear, cherry, peach and plum trees. Visitors can also see their two active solar
systems, a wood burning stove, clothes line and additions like a fire ring, patio and other places
that make it a great backyard to spend time in.
5. Ann Duncan, W 13th Street at the alley between Franklin and Tremont, “Smoke Stack Twin
Gardens” Featuring gardening for large and small spaces, a wide variety of vegetables,
raspberries, tiered garden, strawberry pyramid, rain barrels, compost bin, clothes line.
Location: 
Cedar Falls, Iowa
Sunday, June 10, 2012 -
9:00 am to 12:00 pm
Enter Your Email: 
Name: 
Ashley Wolter
Phone: 
3192737233
Share/Save
          Tools: windows-privesc-check - Standalone Executable to Check for Simple Privilege Escalation Vectors on Windows Systems         

          Novel catalyst systems for deNOx        
Mcclymont, D., Kolaczkowski, S. T., Molloy, K. C. and Awdry, S., 2012. Novel catalyst systems for deNOx. In: DTC Summer Showcase 2012, 2012-07-09 - 2013-04-13.
          Novel catalyst systems for deNOx        
Mcclymont, D., Kolaczkowski, S., Molloy, K. C. and Awdry, S., 2013. Novel catalyst systems for deNOx. In: DTC Symposium Series - Sustainable Industrial Catalysis, 2013-01-29.
          Novel catalyst systems for deNOx        
Mcclymont, D., Kolaczkowski, S., Molloy, K. C. and Awdry, S., 2012. Novel catalyst systems for deNOx. In: IChemE Catalysis for Energy Meeting, 2012-12-11.
          A nonprofit's guide to online security: So you want to learn the lingo?        
This year marks the 25th anniversary of the World Wide Web becoming publicly available. For many of us, this is a reminder of just how much the Internet has transformed our daily lives. This rings true for nonprofits too: The Internet has revolutionized the way that nonprofits communicate, fundraise, and recruit volunteers. It has enabled nonprofits like yours to share their mission with a global audience. To raise awareness. And to change the world. 

But the power of the Internet also comes with great responsibility -- namely the need to keep information safe and secure. As a nonprofit, it can be difficult to keep up with online security, especially when terminology seems complicated. Yes, you might have heard of terms like “phishing” or “cookies,” but what do they mean?

Today, you can find the answers to your questions with our quick & easy to guide to online security terminology. In less than five minutes, you’ll be well on the way to helping keep your nonprofit safe on the Internet. 

Let’s get started! Here’s a quick guide to familiarize yourself with common lingo and learn how to distinguish terms that are friends vs foes in the online security realm. 


THE BAD GUYS: MALICIOUS ACTIONS/TERMS

  • Advanced Fee Fraud (419 scams): A technique which tricks users into sending or paying money to fraudsters on the promise of receiving greater rewards afterwards. It is most commonly associated with Nigeria, and 419 is the section of the Nigerian legal code that covers this fraud.
  • Botnet: A network of computers that are infected with malicious software without users’ knowledge, used to send viruses and spam to other computers.
  • Malware: Malicious software with the purpose of infecting devices and systems, gathering personal information, gaining access to systems or disrupting the operations of the device or systems. Essentially, any software that maliciously alters or compromises the system or device.
  • Phishing / Social Engineering Attack: An attempt by hackers who pose as trustworthy individuals or businesses in order to get your personal information such as usernames, passwords, and financial information.
  • Trojans: Malicious programs posing as or bundled with legitimate ones, which are designed to compromise your system. They are usually installed on computers from opening attachments in scam emails or by visiting infected websites. The term comes from the Trojan Horse in Greek mythology.

How to avoid social engineering attacks

THE GOOD GUYS: ONLINE SAFETY TERMS


  • [Internet] Cookie: A piece of data from a visited website and stored in the user's web browser in order to remember information that the user has entered or engaged with such as items in a shopping basket on an e-commerce site.
  • Encryption: The process of encoding data, messages, or information, such that only authorized parties can read it.
  • Firewall: A security system used to block hackers, viruses, and other malicious threats to your computer. It does this by acting as a barrier, acting on predetermined rules, which allows trusted traffic but blocks untrusted or non-secure traffic. 
  • HTTPS (Hypertext Transfer Protocol): is the protocol for secure communications over a computer network used on the Internet. It essentially provides authentication of the website and the web servers associated with it. 
  • Transport Layer Security (TLS): TLS is a protocol that encrypts and delivers mail securely, both for inbound and outbound mail traffic. It helps prevent eavesdropping between mail servers – keeping your messages private while they're moving between email providers. 
  • Two Factor Authentication / Two Step Verification: A method of using an additional process to verify your identity online. It combines both ‘something you know’ (like a password) and ‘something you have’ (like your phone or security key) — similar to withdrawing money from an ATM/cash machine, where you need both your PIN and your bank card.

That’s a wrap for now! Pass on these tips to your nonprofit partners to stay safe and secure online, so you can focus on what matters most: changing the world. 

//

To see if your nonprofit is eligible to participate, review the Google for Nonprofits eligibility guidelines. Google for Nonprofits offers organizations like yours access to Google tools like Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Drive, Google Ad Grants, YouTube for Nonprofits and more at no charge. These tools can help you reach new donors and volunteers, work more efficiently, and tell your nonprofit’s story. Learn more and enroll here.


          Proenhance patch - Get a longer lasting        



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Proenhance patch - Improve your performance on bed

          Proenhance patch - What's the result you can see from Proenahnce patch        



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Proenhance patch - Improve your performance on bed
Proenhance patch - Improve your performance on bed
Proenhance patch - Skyrocket your confidence
Proenhance patch - The Worries Are Over

          Proenhance patch - Be a better man        



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          Proenhance patch - Be a better man        



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          Windows System Administrator - Zurka Interactive        
Washington, DC - Join a sharp, fun team doing challenging work supporting world class science and technology. At the Center for Computational Science at the US Naval Research Laboratory you'll be part of a team responsible for providing Windows platform administration.
          Entry-Level Systems Administrator - Bullhorn        
Boston, MA - I/T
Boston, MassachusettsFull time
Job Description

As an Entry-Level Systems Administrator you are responsible for monitoring and troubleshooting Bullhorn?s production environment, while ensuring 24/7 product availability. You will monitor and maintain all production system
          Plugin and Operating Systems Administrator - Skytap        
Seattle, WA - Engineering Seattle, Washington

Apply
Description
Skytap Cloud is designed for the traditional applications every business depends on. Our customers want to innovate faster. They need a path from today to tomorrow, from core applications trapped on-premises to agile cloud
          Scrum Master - IJet Intelligent Risk Systems        
Annapolis, MD - Department:Software Development
Location:Annapolis/Reston, MD
START YOUR APPLICATION
The Scrum Master will serve the iJET Labs scrum teams as we develop software products and services to support iJET?s mission to keep millions of people safe as they do business around the world.
          Inside Sales Representative - Ryan Herco Products Corporation        
New Jersey, NJ - ID:1252
Department:Inside Sales
Employment Type:Regular Full-time position
Location:New Jersey, NJ
Description
Ryan Herco Flow Solutions is the leading nation-wide distributor of fluid handling products providing ultrapure, corrosion-resistant fluid handling systems and
          Order in the Court!        
Yesterday, America watched the justice system hard at work as it passed down a guilty verdict for Jodi Arias. In case you have been living under a rock, Arias is the 32-year-old Arizona woman who, five years ago, admitted to killing her lover Travis Alexander by stabbing him and shooting him 27 times in his … Continue reading
          Benchmarking microSD cards and more        
It’s worth re-visiting this blog-post as I am going to do more benchmarks and add more results over time. Motivation If you ever tried using a flash drive (such a SD, microSD, USB drive or CF) for your root or home filesystem on a small computing device or smartphone, you probably have noticed that flash Read more »
          Î— Google ενεργοποιεί "Panic mode" για το back button στην έκδοση 7.1 του Android        

Το Android στην έκδοση 7.1, απέκτησε ένα νέο χαρακτηριστικό με το παρατσούκλι "panic button". Η νέα δυνατότητα εντοπίστηκε από χρήστες του XDA-Developers και έχει σαν στόχο να δώσει στον χρήστη μια επιπλέον δυνατότητα αντιμετώπισης εφαρμογών που έχουν κολλήσει ή είναι κακόβουλες.

Πολλές κακόβουλες εφαρμογές, απενεργοποιούν το back button στο κινητό, αποτρέποντας τον χρήστη από το να βγει από αυτήν και να επιστρέψει στην αρχική οθόνη της συσκευής του. Το Panic mode, "παρακολουθεί" το πόσες φορές και με ποιά συχνότητα πατάει το back button. "Εκτιμώντας" την δύσκολη κατάσταση που βρίσκεται ο χρήστης, το λειτουργικό αναλαμβάνει δράση και παίρνει τον έλεγχο από την "κρεμασμένη" ή κακόβουλη εφαρμογή, κλείνοντας την, επιστρέφοντας την αρχική οθόνη.
A few malicious applications may turn off the 'back' key as well as other buttons. This then wouldn't let the user return to his main screen else any other application. The time is then when the user starts panicking. Unable to guess what is happening with his smart phone as well as what makes it not to answer the user's commands, the phone owner will keep on anxiously hitting the back button in anticipation of it behaving its usual way.

It is here when Google's system would find out the unusual behavior of the phone owner's back button i.e. why so frequently the button is being pressed. Subsequently, the system will prevail over the application and once again enable back action on the phone as well as restore its main screen. The system works for applications which simply freeze, however, for rogue software too which attempts at tapping any or all moves, such as adware or malicious software. 
 
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          Î¤Î¿ Windows 10 Timeline δεν θα συμπεριλαμβάνεται στο Fall Creators Update        


Ένα από τα καλύτερα επερχόμενα χαρακτηριστικά του λειτουργικού συστήματος Windows 10 της Microsoft είναι αναμφισβήτητα το Timeline.
Με το Timeline θα είστε σε θέση να έχετε πρόσβαση στις εφαρμογές σας κατά μήκος πολλαπλών συσκευών, επιτρέποντας στην ουσία να μεταβαίνετε από τη μια Windows 10 συσκευή σας στην άλλη, για να συνεχίσετε τη δουλειά σας από εκεί που την είχατε αφήσει τελευταία.

Πρόκειται αναμφισβήτητα για ένα φιλόδοξο χαρακτηριστικό, και μάλλον περισσότερο φιλόδοξο από όσο θα ήθελε η Microsoft αφού δεν πρόκειται να διατεθεί τελικά στο επερχόμενο Fall Creators Update. Αυτό τουλάχιστον ξεκαθάρισε ο επικεφαλής των Windows 10, Joe Belfiore σε μία σειρά από tweets, υποστηρίζοντας επιπλέον πως το συγκεκριμένο χαρακτηριστικό που αποκαλύφθηκε τον Μάιο που μας πέρασε, δεν προοριζόταν να διατεθεί με το Fall Creators Update ούτως ή άλλως.

Αν και αυτό θα απογοητεύσει τους χρήστες που ήθελαν να το εκμεταλλευτούν το συντομότερο δυνατόν, το Timeline δεν πρόκειται να αργήσει να κάνει την εμφάνιση του, αφού λίγο μετά τη διάθεση του Fall Creators Update θα ενσωματωθεί σε Windows Insider build.

Με το Timeline η Microsoft θέλει να κάνει τη μετάβαση ανάμεσα σε συσκευές ή ακόμα και πλατφόρμες όσο απρόσκοπτη και εύκολη γίνεται. Η εταιρεία προσφέρει ένα calendar timeline που συγχρονίζεται ανάμεσα σε συσκευές και επιτρέπει στον χρήστη να κάνει τη δουλειά του σε μία δεύτερη συσκευή, συνεχίζοντας από εκεί που την είχε αφήσει στη πρώτη συσκευή. Για να επιτευχθεί κάτι τέτοιο, το Timeline εκμεταλλεύεται διάφορες τεχνολογίες της Microsoft, συμπεριλαμβανομένης της ψηφιακή βοηθού Cortana ή του OneDrive κ.ά. Η Microsoft οραματίζεται ένα Timeline που δεν θα λειτουργεί μόνο μεταξύ Windows 10 συσκευών, αλλά και μεταξύ Android και iOS συσκευών.

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          Facing Foreclosure? Then You Need to Get on Board With Obama's Mortgage Loan Modification Today        
Believe it or not, you actually hold the upper hand when it comes to Mortgage Loan Modification in this situation. Your lender will have to pay a very high price to foreclose on your home. Added to this, is the mounting pressure from other companies and organizations for your lender to be more lenient with you in these hard times.

Think of all the memories your home holds for you. Do you recall the lazy days lying around or watching the children play. Maybe you have experienced countless emotions. Whether you have been happy, sad or angry, your home is something that you don't want to lose!

Your lender is not in the business of selling homes. The additional costs and fees associated with foreclosure will leave your mortgage provider looking for other suitable solutions.

With a Mortgage Loan Modification plan, you can reduce your payments for a period of 5 years to something far more affordable. The government can even reduce your mortgage principle in that time. This is a win-win situation for both parties. You get to keep your home, lower your repayments and have your mortgage balance reduced. Your lender doesn't have to go through the effort of trying to foreclose and sell your home and still receives some form of payment from you.

However, with a solution, there is usually always another problem right around the corner. Many people in your circumstances, resort to contacting attorneys, companies and specialists in mortgage foreclosure and loan modification. The fees that you can expect to pay can be astronomical and maybe even push you into further debt.

Some Loan Modification Companies have been reported to charge anywhere between $1500 - $5000 to perform this service. So this, of course, has led the way for certain individuals to fight back and complete the Mortgage Loan Modification process on their own.

If you need a step-by-step system and don't have up to $5000 to spend on Mortgage Loan Modification fees and charges then Click Here to see what other people who have "done it themselves" have to say.
          Discover What the Obama Loan Modification Programs and the 31 Percent Rule Can Do For You        
Loan Modification Programs aren't something new, but many will argue the old system wasn't structured properly to work. A recent example of this is - over half of the loans modified in the US from January to March 2008 defaulted on their modified loan before the end of the year.

What Exactly is Loan Modification?

As you are well aware the economy has taken a huge downturn over the last couple of years. This has had an undesired effect for many homeowners. People find their loans are at risk and the possible threat of foreclosure. This is where lenders will offer lower monthly repayments and set terms and conditions on your home loan for a specified period of time. However, with no real structure in place, this was doomed to fail.

The Obama administration unveiled their new program on Wednesday 4th March 2009. This program planned to restructure home loans and save millions of Americans from foreclosure.

So What is the 31% Rule?

The program requires lenders to reduce your monthly mortgage repayments to no more than 38% of your gross monthly income. The government will then fund the remainder, to bring your payments down by a further 7%. This would mean that your monthly mortgage repayments would be no more than 31% of your total gross monthly income.

In order for your lender to achieve this, they would first need to lower the interest rate on your loan and possibly extend the term of your mortgage. They have the ability to lower the interest rate to 2% and extend your term up to 40 years. However, even after all these alterations, if you are still paying above 31% threshold, the lender can merely claim payments for your principle balance and will charge no interest.

For you to secure help to join one of these Programs, you will usually need to approach a Loan Modification Company. Although, many people have reported savings in excess of $500 per month on their mortgage payments, others have told horror stories of the fees that some of these companies charge.
          Discover Who Can Find a Bad Credit Loan Today        
It's a familiar story, you find you have bad credit and you desperately need a loan today. You have tried the more conventional methods, but no lender is willing to give you a chance. This only makes matters worse. You are struggling to meet the monthly repayments on your bills and you have absolutely nowhere to turn. This is when you really need help and advice.

My Miracle Loans is a program that has been designed to help people in your very situation. So who can My Miracle Loans help to Find A Bad Credit Loan:-

- Those of you who have no job or cannot prove your income - let's face facts, if you had money, you wouldn't need urgent help. This is why they will help you secure a loan without having to provide numerous payslips and bank statements.

- People who have a poor credit history or a low credit score - there will be no credit checks, so this will have no effect on your ability to borrow.

- Those who have been made Bankrupt - This program has been created to help shed some light. You will discover methods to secure finance even when bankrupt that have been hidden from you for many years by lenders.

- You have no assets or collateral - This system is not about what you have to offer a lender in return for a loan. You will not be required to prove anything.

Even if you have been turned down before My Miracle Loans can help you find a bad credit loan today.

If you are struggling and not sure where to turn and you are looking to Find A Bad Credit Loan, then please read my full review on My Miracle Loans and discover how to ease your financial troubles today.
          Improve Your Credit Score - Part 3        
My system actually won't work for everybody.

As a matter of fact, it won't work for people
who don't take action and people who think
that their credit problems will magically go
away.

Then this isn't for them. It simply won't
work for everybody, but for people who do
take action and follow directions and who are
willing to put in a little effort, I think
they get outstanding results.

'THANK YOU' for taking action and doing what it
takes to have great credit.

Here's the special website
-------------------------------------
Get SIX Free Bonuses!
-------------------------------------

*Bonus #1: My PROVEN Step-By-Step Credit
----
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These proven letters are the EXACT letters that
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they work like crazy! (Just copy, paste, and send)

*Bonus #2: The Budgeting Success Guide!
----
A complete budgeting guide with 3 PDF guides to
help you track your credit card debt, income, and
expenses.

*Bonus #3: The Interest Annihilator Phone Script!
----
Use this simple script to annihilate your interest
rates on your credit cards immediately!

*Bonus #4: Interest Elimination Video
----
Real Life Video Showing How To eliminate your high
interest payments

*Bonus #5: The Complete Transcripts of All
Audio Interviews!
----
Complete Transcripts of the 4 interviews with
credit experts Donna Fox, Scott Bilker, and
Brett Bruce.

*Bonus #6: My "Snowball" Reduction System
----
This special spreadsheet will help you pay
off your debt faster, quicker, and easier than
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how to reduce your large bills by "following the plan."

Go here right now and claim your copy before it's
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          Do You Have A Poor Credit Rating But Desperately Need A Loan?        
Are you someone who feels completely helpless because you have a poor credit rating and can't seem to get a loan? Being able to secure a loan would actually solve your credit problems and see you on the road to recovery. However, because of a poor credit history or poor credit rating, no lender in their right mind would ever consider you for a loan!

I'm sure that is a very familiar story for many of you. I know myself it is one of the worst feelings that you can ever have. I recall the days of having a fairly decent job and being offered credit left, right and centre. I'm not sure why, but I pretty much accepted all the offers of credit cards or loans. I think it was something to do with the “kid let loose in a sweet shop” scenario. The repercussions never really occurred to me at the time, so I continued to take out credit card after credit card and loan after loan.

If you can't wait any longer to secure a loan then Click Here to register for the "My Miracle Loans" program right now. For those of you who wish to read my story and review, you can access the program at the end of this article.

I think the effects of what I was doing finally hit me a few years down the line. I started to use less and less credit every month and tried to act a lot more responsibly. However, I had got to the stage where my minimum repayments for all my credit was pretty much the same amount as what I earned in a month. I once read a magazine article that stated – in order to repay $10,000 on a credit card, by just making the minimum payment, this would take up to 12 years. Wow! Unfortunately it wasn't just the one credit card I had to repay!

That's when it dawned on me that I had to do something...and quickly. After some careful investigation, I decided a debt consolidation loan and a couple of 0% APR credit cards was the way to go. I had racked up a total of $26,000 in debt. I looked at my current credit card limits and assumed I wouldn't get offered more than a $5000 dollar limit on a new credit card. So my plan was to apply for two 0% APR credit cards and a $16,000 loan. This would allow me to cut up all my credit cards and have all my debts cleared within 5 years. Or so I thought, I didn't count on getting declined for every bit of credit I applied for. My credit score was shot and at an all time low!

That's when I started searching for different methods and other forms of help. Nothing illegal, of course. I just thought to myself, I can't be the first person to find themselves in this situation and I definitely won't be the last! I actually found a total of 8 different companies, courses or websites, that said they could help and even provided me with testimonials of previous satisfied customers. Today I want to talk to you about My Miracle Loans.

My Miracle Loans is a program that will teach you a number of different strategies to obtain a loan. They advise you to read through their techniques and apply what you have learned. My Miracle Loans guarantee a 100% success rate, as long as you carry out their systems and procedures to the letter! They have helped people, like you and me, those with poor credit ratings, bad credit and even bankruptcies to secure credit and finance. My Miracle Loans are responsible for helping their members acquire over $10,000,000 in loans during 2008. They also claim to be able to help anyone secure a loan of $1,000 - $1,000,000 within 7 days! (Although it's very tempting, I think I will always steer clear of the possibility of securing a loan for $1,000,000!)

So what type of people can My Miracle Loans help:-

No job or proof of income – Obviously if you have a lot of money, you wouldn't need their help! You will never be asked for proof of income or to provide evidence of your income.

Bad Credit, No Credit or Slow Credit – There are absolutely no credit checks for some of the methods you will learn. So a poor credit history will not effect the outcome.

A FICO score of 450 – That's Bad! As mentioned above, many of methods you will learn do not require a credit check. So you're covered.

Bankruptcies in the last 7 years – My Miracle Loans dispel the myth that if you have been made bankrupt, you will not be able to borrow any money for up to 7 years. They can show you the exact methods to secure a loan or credit.

No Collateral or Assets – Their system has nothing to do with what worldly possessions you own. You will not be required to provide proof of what you do or do not own.

Been turned down before - Not a problem. These methods will still work for you.

I think that comprehensive list just about covers everyone. My Miracle Loans had quite clearly stated that not all the methods and techniques will work for everyone. Not all individuals are the same. This is why they have provided you with numerous different methods to try. If you do not get accepted for one, you move on and try the next one. They have an iron-clad guarantee that EVERYONE will find success with their program.

So for what purpose can you use the loans that My Miracle Loans will help secure for you?

Business loans – Whether you are purchasing a business, looking to expand or you need supplies. They will help you get whatever you want.

Cash Advance – Do you need a pay-day advance for your job? No problem you can secure that cash advance within 10 minutes!

Car Loans – You can get that luxury car of your dreams and you don't need the salary to match.

Student Loans – This is where my problems originally started. There are many students out there, who are yet to even start college, that may be affected by poor credit.

Debt Consolidation – If you need that peace of mind. Turn all your debts into one loan and make the monthly repayments easier to handle and keep track of.

Home Loans – You have no fear of being turned down, no matter how much you want to borrow. My Miracle Loans guarantee to help you find that dream home.

Personal Loans – A personal loan is usually determined and granted by you having a great credit score. My Miracle Loans will help those of you, who are not in a position to boast about your credit score!

So let me run through the main benefits that My Miracle Loans offer:-

100% success rate – As long as you carry out their instructions correctly, you will never be turned down again for a loan.

Take up to 30 years to repay the money – In many cases, lenders may penalize you for not paying back money as soon as you can. This is not the case with My Miracle Loans.

Receive your cash in 7 days guaranteed – This doesn't have to be a long drawn out process. My Miracle Loans will guarantee that you will receive your money in 7 days or less in the majority of cases.

Use your money for any purpose – as described earlier.

No upfront fees – Paying a company to lend you money does not seem ethical...does it?

Ease of use – this is not a complicated guide on how to write loan proposals or where to find investors and this is definitely not an outdated list of lenders willing to help people with poor credit secure a loan. This is a program that allows you access to many little known and closely guarded techniques.

So what's the catch? There is no catch! My Miracle Loans program will work for you no matter who you are and what your situation may be.

There is little more I can add about this great program. If you find yourself in the situation of having a poor credit rating and you desperately need a loan, you need look no further.

You have absolutely nothing to lose and everything to gain by registering with this fantastic program.

Click here to get started and acquire that loan that will ease all your money problems today.
          Who Else Wants To Know How To Raise Their Credit Score?        


Click Here To Get Access To Your FREE REPORT

Or Read On And Collect Your Free Report At The End Of This Article

Have you ever asked yourself, "How Do I Raise My Credit Score?" Over the years you may have racked up numerous debts. These may include, loans, credit cards and mortgages. As your debts increase through constant interest charges, things seem to get a little harder month after month. Perhaps, you have been unfortunate enough to miss some payments. This, regrettably, has the knock-on effect of additional late-payment charges and will eventually ruin your credit score.

The problem is, once you hit the rocky road of having a bad or low credit score, creditors or lenders will look at you with disdain. Gone are the days of being instantly approved for any form of credit. You are now looked upon as a high risk and no-one seems willing to help you.

This is pretty much what happened to me. I had a fairly decent job and that had helped me to secure various forms of credit. It was never a worry to me then, as i always had enough money coming in to cover at least the minimum payments, if not more. However, eventually mounting interest charges or the end of a 0% credit card deal, started to have an adverse effect on me being able to continue making full and regular payments. I had even got to the stage of using one credit card to make a payment on another credit card. So even though i was making some form of monthly payment, i was increasing my debt at the same time. Not Good! This, ultimately ruined my credit score and brought it to an all time low.

I then started searching for professional credit repair agencies. I soon discovered that many of these agencies make substantial claims to improve and raise your credit score. However, the majority charge a King's ransom for the privilege and they don't seem to deliver on their promises.

This is when i came across Chris Brisson's "37 days to clean credit" course. Chris had been in the same boat as many of us before him. As a college student he had built up a total of $14,000 in student loans and credit card debt. He had a small amount of income coming in and started to miss payments. Chris had managed to get his credit score down to a horrid 520! Once again, like so many of his predecessors, Chris scoured every possible resource to improve his credit score. He eventually admitted he got scammed by these so called "professional" credit reference agencies. This is when Chris decided to do something himself about it.

Chris had made a few discoveries along the way. He then went about legally "stealing" some of top secret methods that credit reference agencies use to remove negative items, inquiries, judgements and bankruptcies. After 37 days, Chris had managed to delete 9 inquiries, 5 late-pays, 4 default accounts and 1 judgement. In the process, Chris boosted his score by 135 points to a respectable 655.

So what exactly does Chris reveal in his Course:-

- How to easily delete 30, 60, 90, 120 or 150 day late-pays from your file

- How to easily set up a budgeting system to track income, expenses and all your payments

- A little known secret technique to getting your credit card APR interest dropped to 0%

- How to stop the harassing collections telephone calls

- How to repair bad credit in less than 30 days

- How to boost your credit score by 50 points even if you have the worst credit in the world.

- How to stop foreclosure and then negotiate with your bank to lower your monthly payment by 10% - 20%

These are just a few of the methods that Chris will go through. There are just far too many helpful little techniques to mention here.

One of my favourite systems i learned from Chris, was how to reduce the interest rate of my current credit card. It was as simple as making a phone call. Mention that you have in front of you a competitors details and that they are offering a 0% deal for six months, which will then turn into a 8% rate. Chris advises to always be polite and state that you will be looking to balance transfer unless they can lower your interest rate. In most cases, the operator will speak to a supervisor, who has the ability to drop your interest rate. To threaten to leave (in a nice way) is the key! So simple, but effective.

Another invaluable source contained within this course, is the copy and paste letters. Chris has structured a number of letters to be sent to creditors depending on what form of credit repair you are looking to achieve. The letters are organized in such a way, that you simply need to insert your own personal details in the blank spaces.

In addition to the course, Chris offers an unbelievable 5 free bonuses. They would usually retail at a value of $757, but are yours for free, once you sign up to Chris's course. I absolutely loved world renowned credit card expert, Scott Bilker's Interest Annihilation Method. This is one of your free bonuses. Scott unveils how to get approved for 0% APR credit cards. Scott also discusses the secret language indicators to use when you speak to your creditors. (yes, it's all down to the actual words you use!) and his 3 step debt elimination strategy system.

So if you have finally had enough of the way that lenders treat you, it's time to do something about it! Chris Brisson has come up with a guaranteed program to help you get the credit rating you have always wanted. So let me just quickly run through what you will get, once you have signed up to Chris Course:-

- The complete "37 days To clean Credit Course"

- The Interest Annihilation Method Audio with Scott Bilker

- The Credit Millionaire System with Donna Fox

- Credit Repair Mystery with Brett Bruce

- 45 "Copy & Paste" proven Credit Repair letters

- Super Budgeting Video Walk through

Don't forget to grab your Free Report on the 6 Deadly Credit Repair Myths as well.

Click Here to get started on raising your Credit Score today.

          Hamilton: Let fans judge qualifying        
Lewis Hamilton has urged critics of Formula 1's new qualifying format to wait until the system has made its debut in Australia before passing judgment
          Systems Engineer TS/SCI with CI Polygraph        
MD-Bethesda, TS/SCI w/CI poly required Summary System Engineer serve to maintain a strong awareness of technical trends in information technology, develop and maintain a strong awareness of on-going IT projects, and business unit requirements; be able to apply the project management model selected for a given development effort; and provide analysis, design, development, deployment, and lifecycle support for i
          Information Security/Information Assurance Analyst        
MD-Bethesda, TS/SCI w/CI poly Duties: · Provide expert information systems advice and serve as an information security subject matter expert to the IT enterprise management community stakeholders · Provide information systems security solutions to support the management of the community Databases Program by continuously monitoring, assessing, and analyzing database performance to assure data integrity and to s
          Windows Server Administrator Consultant        
NY-Syracuse, Windows Administrator Consultant is needed in Syracuse, NY for 6+ months – Job MB1006144 (Microsoft Certification Preferred) Specific Technical Skills · Minimum of 5 years’ experience with Microsoft operating systems · Extensive knowledge in installing, configuring, and supporting Windows 2000,Windows 2003, and Windows 2008/R2 · Extensive knowledge of AD, DNS, DHCP, WINS, · Extensive knowledge sup
          Healthcare Artificial Intelligence, Cognitive Tools Bring Big Investments        
August 10, 2017 - Artificial intelligence and cognitive computing systems may be attracting a lot of hype across the healthcare industry, but the ...
          IBM makes a deep learning breakthrough        
IBM announced PowerAI DDL on Tuesday, a new technique designed to reduce the time it takes to train distributed deep learning systems, according ...
          Merry Christmas        



Merry Christmas

Christmas is a wonderful time of year. It really brings out the best in people. Spending time with family and friends, great food and, of course, great drinks! I hope everyone enjoyed it and is looking forward to New Year’s celebrations!

Once again, I haven’t posted in several weeks. Things have been extremely busy since getting back from Afghanistan. As of yesterday, I am no longer on active duty with the Air Force. I am now a reservist with the 914th at Niagara Falls! That also means that today is my first day working ‘full time’ with New Buffalo Brewing.

We have done a lot in the last month, but we haven’t talked about it much. We set up a small lab in Clarence, and are currently dialing in on what we think will be our first four beers.  We are also working on a Kickstarter Campaign, which is a huge project. The support we receive from donors will make the difference between opening this spring and pushing off for several more months.

I want to talk about the lab in today’s post. It’s small, with a Brew Magic as our system, six half-barrel fermenters, and room for only one and a half barrels of finished beer. We are producing all the beer we need to have ready between now and April on this nano- of nano systems! You can imagine space will become an issue.

The plan is as follows: We are going to brew six beers between January 25th and March 10th. We aren’t publicizing the names yet, but we will have a brown ale, bitters, APA, and IPA. Our last two are still wild cards. We have two dry stout variants, a sweet stout and a porter. As much as I like the sweet stout, I think it’s on the chopping block. Many people we have talked to have varying degrees of lactose intolerance, and we want to make sure we are making something everyone can enjoy.

So where is this beer going? We have a couple of big things in the pipe. First, we want to be able to enter all our beers into the Amber Waves of Grain on March 10th.  Second, we need to have samples for the distributors and the bank to try. But I’m sure most people are interested in our the tastings…

We are planning four events to go with our Kickstarter campaign, three in Buffalo and one in Rochester. We’ll be sure to give everyone a big heads up once we have the locations nailed down. So far we have one place approved and three in the works.

So watch for an active blog again, and I will be updating the main site often over the next month or so as we get ready to announce our ‘official’ beers. Thanks for reading!

Bill

          Mild Ale        

Due to work, I spent allot of time flying around the country to different bases for training or to train people. The last couple of months there hasn’t been allot of  flying going on since the government didn’t pass a budget again this year. All those can’s have been kicked down to the road to the point we have to do them, so over the next two months I’ll get a solid 48 hours of time in the back of a plane. This means I get allot of reading done. So expect more book reviews like the one below.

Mild Ale History Brewing Techniques, Recipes by David Sutula.

This was the first book in the Classic Beer Style Series I’ve read, I plan on ordering the rest of them since I had such a good time reading this book. The book is mostly a history of the brew and it puts in some real information in how to make your own at home. I like history so it was great to ready about the English brewing system and the vast changes to the quality and type of beer consumed. It seems that beer smelled of “wet goat” and had a final gravity often around 1.60-1.70. Clearly there was allot of extra junk in that beer. Even the term beer is fairly modern which is pretty cool. The History section talks about the raise of victoria brewing towers as well as a float of Porter that killed. Also the use of Finings(fish bladder goo) to pull out suspended sediment in the beer was something I had thought gone away ages ago. The books claim it’s the only way to make a proper English Mild.  I’m not sure if I’m going to try that one anytime soon.

A bit more about the beerThe English Mild by style is normally a tea like brew in color and in taste with an underwhelming 3-4% ABV, its mildly hopped by Fuggle or Golding that help develop the tea like characters of the brew. Somehow an English brew tasting like tea is fitting.

The confusion of Brown Ale and Mild is explained as well. Also the history of the rise of brown Ale and many brewers renaming there Mild a Brown Ale did more to hurt the style than anything else. Even with in Mild there are some big variations. 

He closes with a collection of home brewing recipes to replicate some of the biggest Mild’s still in production as well as a formula to approximate the brew as it was in the early 1800s.

I highly encourage anyone who’s interested in the history of brewing as well as this style to enjoy the book. Its only 200 pages and the print is big, front to back it only took about 3 hours to read. Below you’ll find the link the amazon for the book:

http://www.amazon.com/Mild-Ale-History-Brewing-Techniques/dp/0937381683/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1318261545&sr=1-1

          Le mete turistiche in Europa più gluten-free        
Chiedere agli amici, in rete o consultare gli elenchi delle associazioni locali gluten-free è un ottimo sistema per capire quali opzioni senza glutine sono disponibili nelle varie capitali europee, ma automatizzare questo tipo di ricerca permette di; guadagnare molto tempo di scoprire delle vere e proprie “opportunità culinarie” nascoste di scoprire posti senza glutine non […]
          Ð§ÐµÑ€Ñ€Ð¸ / About Cherry (2012) BDRemux 1080p | L1        

Категория: Фильмы/HDTV/HD/Blu-Ray/MKV
Размер: 17.56 GB
Траффик: Раздают (отдают): 9,886, Скачивают (качают): 3,172
Добавлен: 2017-08-10 13:45:08
Описание: Информация о фильме
Название: Черри
Оригинальное название: About Cherry
Год выхода: 2012
Жанр: драма

Режиссер: Стивен Эллиот
В ролях: Эшли Хиншоу, Лили Тейлор, Дев Патель, Джонни Уэстон, Джеймс Франко, Хизер Грэм, Дайан Фарр, Майя Рэйнс, Винсент Пало, Элана Крауш

О фильме:
История 18-летний девушки начинающей работать в порнографическом бизнесе после того, как она переезжает в Сан-Франциско. Первое о чем ей предстоит позаботиться – какой-нибудь заработок. Новый город – новые друзья, новая судьба и пьянящая возможность легко и весело заработать, снимаясь у профессионалов. Сначала фото, потом видео - можно показать себя, пускай и полностью, без цензуры. Для раскованной симпатичной девчонки это легко.

http://s.rutor.info/imdb/pic/1945062.gif http://www.kinopoisk.ru/rating/592037.gif

Страна: США
Студия: Enderby Entertainment, Gordon Bijelonic / Datari Turner Films
Продолжительность: 01:42:11
Перевод: Любительский одноголосный, закадровый [Kerob]

Файл
Кодек: h.264
Качество: BDRemux
Видео: 1920x1080, 24598 Kbps, 23.98 fps
Звук:
AC3, 48 KHz, 6 ch ~ 448 Kb/s (русский);
DTS, 48 KHz, 6 ch ~ 1510 Kb/s (английский).
Субтитры:
Английские (полные), PGS;
Испанские (полные), PGS;
Русские (полные), SRT;
Русские (форсированные), SRT.

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          Science Olympiad Captures 2nd Place at Regional Competition        
Kellenberg’s premier STEM Club, Science Olympiad, took home a second-place team victory on Staurday, February 4, 2017, at the Nassau West Regional Science Olympiad Competition. Three teams represented Kellenberg in the day-long competition. Students competed in 25 different events from anatomy, game design, dynamic planet, tower building, and more exposed these students to challenging science […]
          AT&T Adds 2.1 Million Net New Customers In Second Quarter Of 2015        
AT&T Adds 2.1 Million Net New Customers In Second Quarter Of 2015

AT&T recently announced that it has added 2.1 million net new customers during the second quarter of this year. Interestingly, almost all of the carrier’s new additions is attributed to strong sales of tablets, and to connected cars. As a matter of fact, AT&T has added one million new additions driven by tablets and connected cars in the period spanning April to June.

It appears that there is a visible shift in the makeup of AT&T’s subscriber base, with a significant part of the new customer additions spurred by tablets and connected devices. Also, it seems that traditional subscribers -- i.e. those that use phones -- may be on the decline, at least in AT&T’s case. It is also possible that such diminished growth from traditional phone customers for AT&T is connected to the increased pressure from competitors like Sprint and T-Mobile, who are only eager to usurp AT&T’s place as the second biggest wireless carrier in the United States.

Earlier in July, T-Mobile had announced that it had added 2.1 million customers during the second quarter of this year. And just a few days ago, Verizon Wireless had revealed that it had gained over 1 million net new customers, and 1.1 million post-paid subscribers. 

As for AT&T, it had added 410,000 post-paid subscribers, however the growth entirely consisted of 600,000 tablets. In the second quarter of this year, the carrier had lost about 200,000 basic phone subscribers. Still, AT&T was able to add 331,000 prepaid customers as a result of boosting its prepaid arm Cricket Wireless. 

A new focus for AT&T is in connected cars. The carrier is signing up with the largest number of automobile manufacturers in order to bring cellular connectivity to vehicles. But perhaps the more pressing question is -- will people actually pay extra money to connect their cars to a cellular network? The potential is there, but for now, it remains to be seen. 

AT&T also managed to generate a profit in the amount of $3.04 billion, or $0.58 per share, during the second quarter of 2015. During the same period in the previous year, the carrier had a profit of $3.55 billion, or $0.68 per share. Not counting costs associated with its acquisition of two wireless carriers based in Mexico and its looming deal with DirecTV, AT&T managed $0.69 per share of adjusted earnings. Moreover, revenues increased 1.4 percent to $33 billion. As per data compiled by Yahoo, analysts predict, on average, revenue of $33.04 billion and earnings of $0.63 per share.

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          AT&T To Launch Rollover Data Plan        
AT&T To Launch Rollover Data Plan

A month ago in December, T-Mobile announced its Data Stash program, wherein subscribers can carry over unused data from one month to the next one. It has only been a few days since this program has taken effect, and now AT&T is launching Rollover Data, its answer to T-Mobile's program.

Like T-Mobile's offer, AT&T's Rollover Data lets subscribers save their leftover data after each billing cycle. The plan will be launched on January 25th, and will be open to all subscribers under AT&T's Mobile Share Value plans.

However, it should be noted that AT&T will not allow its subscribers to keep banking the same data month after month. This means that customers will have to use up the data they saved in the next billing cycle, or lose the data.

For instance, if a customer has four lines under a 15 gigabyte AT&T Mobile Share Value plan, and only uses up 10 gigabytes for the month of January, he will be able to roll over the 5 unused gigabytes for the next month. In other words, he will have a total data allotment of 20 gigabytes in February (15 gigabytes + 5 unused gigabytes). 

If the customer does not use up all the 20 gigabytes allotted in February, he will not be able to bank the accumulated two months worth of unused gigabytes onto March. Instead, the first rule applies: he can only roll over unused data from the previous month, which in this case is whatever amount of data he has not used from the current month's 15 gigabyte allotment. The bottom line is that the customer has to use up the data he saved for the next month, or the whole thing resets. 

AT&T is obviously designing its Rollover Data plan to give users extra data to be used for the next month only, and not to be accumulated and used at, say, the end of the year. Herein lies the difference with T-Mobile's plan -- it lets customers accrue unused data for a full year. 

That is not to say T-Mobile's plan has no caveats of its own. For one, it is only open to individual line subscribers of any postpaid data plan with 3 gigabytes of data allotment or more. As for AT&T's Rollover Data plan, it is available to subscribers of any level of shared plan, even one that only offers 300 megabytes of data allotment.

Indeed, both carriers have different ways of offering data rollover options. Consumers will have to decide for themselves which setup works best for them. Do they go for the plan that lets them save unused data for an extended period of time? Or do they opt for a plan that lets them roll over unused data on a per billing cycle basis only? 

Explore other deals from AT&T now. You can also start browsing plans and phones from T-Mobile.

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          LG Introduces The Curved Phone G Flex 2        
LG Introduces The Curved Phone G Flex 2

Back in 2014, LG released the G Flex handset, a 6-inch smartphone with a unique curved body design and a self-healing coating that clears up scratches or any damage done to the device's casing.  

Now, the South Korean company is introducing an enhanced and more streamlined version, the G Flex 2. This time around, the newest version comes with a smaller but more handy 5.5-inch display screen, and Qualcomm's most powerful chip set.

The G Flex 2 smartphone was introduced by LG during its very recent press conference at the Consumer Electronics Show 2015 (CES 2015) held in Las Vegas, Nevada in the United States. 

With its introduction, LG's G Flex 2 handset is the first of many phones this year expected to feature Qualcomm's newest offering -- the Snapdragon 810 processor. It is an eight-core 2.0 GigaHertz chip set that is 64-bit compatible for Android 5.0 Lollipop, the latest version of the Android mobile operating system. The 810 processor functions with 2 gigabytes of memory, and can support 3 x 20 MegaHertz LTE carrier aggregation for all networks that support it.

For the device's display screen, LG employed its own plastic OLED display technology. Techies may recall that this is the same display technology utilized in LG's G Watch R wearable device. But in G Flex 2's case, the resolution is set higher to 1080 pixels. 

As for its camera, the G Flex 2 smartphone sports a 13-megapixel camera that has laser autofocus system and optical image stabilization -- features that users may also find in LG's current flagship device (the LG G3).

The G Flex 2 features a 3,000 mAh battery that takes full advantage of Qualcomm's fast charging technology available via the latest Snapdragon chip sets. This technology significantly reduces the recharging time by up to 75 percent. Thus, users can get the G Flex 2 half-charged in just 40 minutes.

But what really makes the G Flex 2 unique is its curved body. The front side (display screen) has a 700 millimeter curved radius, while the rear side is curved just a bit less (650 millimeter radius). This is by design, by the way. According to LG, this helps users hold the phone more easily and also, allows the device to fit more easily in users' pockets.

Naturally, the G Flex 2 will be launched first in South Korea before the end of the month. But American users will not have long to wait. Major carriers AT&T and Sprint have already confirmed that they will be including the device in their respective smartphone line-ups this year. Regional carrier US Cellular has also announced that they will be offering the device in spring. No specific release dates and pricing details have been provided yet, but LG fans in the US should be pretty excited nonetheless. 

Want to know more LG devices? You can start comparing LG phones and plans now.

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          Sprint Called Out For Cramming Customer Accounts        
Sprint Called Out For Cramming Customer Accounts

Oops. Sprint has been busted for charging tens of millions of dollars in unauthorized third-party messaging charges to customer bills.

Moreover, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is about to issue a fine in the amount of $105 million for the carrier's dubious charges, as reported by the Wall Street Journal. Interestingly, the amount of the fine is the same as the one AT&T paid to the FCC earlier this year in a case that is similar.

The fine is not official yet -- the FCC is still waiting for the commissioner to approve it. However, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is not wasting any moment -- on behalf of the carrier's disgruntled subscribers, the CFPB is filing a lawsuit against Sprint.

According to the CFPB, Sprint should have made it a priority to protect its subscribers from third-party billing scams. But unfortunately for its customers, the carrier had let suspicious fees for unauthorized premium text messages show up on the customers' billing statements.

The CFPB further alleges that Sprint is choosing to ignore the tens of thousands of complaints and refund requests from disgusted subscribers due to the incorrect billing. The bureau also believes that with the carrier keeping about 40 percent of all the revenue generated from bills crammed with third-party fees, it is a lot easier for Sprint to turn a blind eye.

Even though the major wireless carriers in the United States have agreed to cease billing their subscribers for premium third-party services, the practice of cramming customer bills has always been frequently done by service providers for years. By doing so, they can generate some extra income out of unsuspecting wireless subscribers.

Last October this year, AT&T agreed to settle with the FCC over cramming complaints from its subscribers. Even T-Mobile had to deal with its own cramming lawsuit back in July of this year. Out of the $105 million fine paid by AT&T, the FCC took $80 million to be refunded to subscribers who were affected. For sure, the FCC will work to achieve the same result with its lawsuit against Sprint. 

For its part, Sprint is denying the allegations. The carrier claims that it took certain steps to protect its subscribers from unauthorized third-party billing practices. 

If the $105 million fine does go through, it will mark the first time that the FCC and the CFPB have joined forces together in taking action against a major wireless provider.

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          Sprint Prepaid Teams Up With Best Buy To Offer Free Month Of Service        
Sprint Prepaid Teams Up With Best Buy To Offer Free Month Of Service

Looks like Sprint is on a roll as we enter into the holiday season. The carrier offers another year-end special offer through its Sprint Prepaid brand, which is collaborating with retail giant Best Buy in giving customers one month of service that is completely free of charge. 

This special offer is a limited time offer only, and is open to all subscribers buying a new eligible handset from Best Buy and activating it under a Sprint Prepaid plan. Phones that eligible include the Samsung Galaxy S5, the Samsung Galaxy SIII, the LG Tribute, the LG Volt, and the Sharp Crystal.

Customers get to choose from three Sprint Prepaid plans that already include unlimited calls and unlimited text messaging. These plans are: the $35 monthly plan that includes 1 gigabyte of data, the $45 monthly plan that includes 3 gigabyte of data, and the $55 monthly plan 

Apart from unlimited calls and texting, Sprint Prepaid's plans also offer 50 minutes of off-network voice roaming per month. This is not usually offered by other prepaid service providers, which should delight those who decide to go for a prepaid plan from Sprint.

Sprint's free first month special offer is certainly a treat, but other prepaid brands also offer competitive deals. For instance, Cricket Wireless (AT&T's prepaid brand) has its Basic Plan, which offers unlimited calls, unlimited text messaging, and 1 gigabyte of high-speed data for $35 each month, that is once an AutoPay credit is applied.

New prepaid player Red Pocket also has an interesting offer. Via its GSMT Unlimited Everything plan, you get unlimited calls, unlimited text messaging, 200 minutes of international calls, and 2 gigabytes of data at full speed for $39.99 every recharge. This offer is also eligible for a full month of service free of charge from Red Pocket, provided the customer gets two months worth of recharges.

The year is not over yet, and we may still see other holiday deals from prepaid brands in the coming days or weeks. But Sprint Prepaid's offer is truly worth checking out. Customers can avail of it until January 31st of next year at all Best Buy retail stores in the United States.

Sprint has been rather busy in the past few weeks. The carrier has made its iPhone for Life and Easy Pay options available from Apple retails stores for the holidays. Apart from that, it has also teamed up with Uber in offering a free first ride promo for Sprint customers who sign up for the transport service. Interested to know more about Sprint's deals? You can compare plans and phones from the carrier here.

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          AT&T Expands Voice Over LTE To 18 Additional Markets        
AT&T Expands Voice Over LTE To 18 Additional Markets

AT&T first launched its Voice over LTE (VoLTE) service about seven months ago, but now the carrier is expanding its reach by adding 18 new markets for its VoLTE and HD Voice offerings.

The list of new markets include District of Columbia, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin. 

The good news is that this is just the beginning. AT&T's target is to transition every consumer to VoLTE. That would be easier said than done for sure, considering the tons of networks that need to be set up and the hardware that needs to be deployed. But AT&T is positive about the outcome, and early signs of success are certainly visible.

As stated by John Donovan, AT&T's Senior Vice President of Technology and Operations, the carrier's VoLTE network is performing very well after some internal tests, scoring an average of more than 99 percent in terms of accessibility and retainability (how well the users stay connected).

For those not in the know, VoLTE technology lets users simultaneously make calls and browse the Internet using their smartphones with very fast 4G LTE data speeds. 

As for HD Voice, it is a type of wideband technology that allows for better call quality with minimal background noise, made possible through widening the frequency range of the audio signals.

Voice calls were previously transmitted on a rather limited frequency range (between 300 Hertz to 3.4 Hertz). But with HD Voice, that frequency range is extended from 50 Hertz to 7 KiloHertz, and sometimes even beyond, in order to achieve high definition quality in voice calls.

However, before users can enjoy HD Voice, they need to meet the requirements. Firstly, the service must be available in their geographical area (AT&T is working on it). Secondly, the person calling and the recipient of the call must both use handsets that are HD Voice capable. For AT&T customers, just about the only devices available from their carrier that meet this requirement are the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus.

AT&T is far from being the only major wireless carrier that offers HD Voice though. Sprint may have been the first off the blocks, offering its customers a 30-day trial run of its HD Voice service in June earlier this year. Even Verizon Wireless is working on its own HD Voice brand, and the talk is that the Big Red will utilizing the AMR-wideband standard (the industry norm) for its service.

Interestingly, AT&T and Verizon Wireless are working together in providing clear call quality in both their customers. If they can pull this off, AT&T customers will be able to call their friends and family who are on Verizon as clearly as possible, and vice versa.

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          AT&T Throttles Users On Unlimited Data Plans Regardless Of Network Congestion        
AT&T Throttles Users On Unlimited Data Plans Regardless Of Network Congestion

AT&T has confirmed that it is throttling subscribers under its unlimited data plans, no matter how congested the network is. 

As reported by Ars Technica, subscribers who are using non-LTE 3G/HSPA+ handsets and are under unlimited data plans only get throttled when network congestion becomes heavy, and when the users exceed 3 gigabytes of data within a single billing period. But apparently, these same conditions do not apply to customers on LTE.

If a subscriber is under, say, a legacy AT&T unlimited plan and uses up more than 5 gigabytes of data on an LTE-compatible handset in a span of a month, the subscriber's data speeds will automatically be reduced for the remainder of the billing period, even if the network remains free of congestion.

Ars Technica further reported that data speeds slowed down from 23.5 mbps on average to just 0.1 mbps. When the subscriber's billing period is reset, only then are the data speeds returned to their normal levels. However, once the subscriber reaches 5 gigabytes, data speeds are automatically reduced again.

For its part, AT&T issued a statement defending its network management practices as legitimate. The carrier claims that the throttling was put in place in order to provide optimum network service for its subscribers.

AT&T further added that it is planning to address the data throttling concerns between its LTE and non-LTE unlimited subscribers sometime next year. The carrier says that it will be reducing data speeds for LTE users in congested networks as soon as that option is made available.

AT&T may be claiming that it is throttling data speeds for the benefit of all customers using its networks. But others see the throttling as a ploy to lead on long-term customers to more lucrative limited data plans. This tactic has been employed before, namely by Sprint for its Unlimited My Way and My All-In plans. Even Verizon Wireless thought of doing the same thing, but then the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) stepped in and pressured Big Red to reverse its decision. 

Right now, fewer than 20 percent of all AT&T customers are under unlimited data plans. Those that are signed up for the plans because they were thinking they could stream and download without having to worry about high overage fees if they exceed their data allotments. But it appears that they are getting throttled anyway, rendering their data privileges useless. 

As for the network congestion claims, some may find it hard to believe, especially when the subscribers who are under more expensive data plans (up to 100 gigabytes each month) never get to experience throttled data speeds.

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          Sprint Introduces Deal To Reduce Bills Of AT&T, Verizon Customers In Half        
Sprint Introduces Deal To Reduce Bills Of AT&T, Verizon Customers In Half

When it comes to grabbing customers from rival wireless carriers, Sprint does not seem to shy away from unusual tactics. Just recently for instance, the carrier introduced a new deal that promises to cut the bills in half of any customer from competitors AT&T and Verizon Wireless. Of course, for the customers to avail of the deal, they would have to produce a current AT&T or Verizon bill. It is a gutsy move for sure, but will it be effective? 

Sprint is calling the deal the Cut Your Bill in Half promo. In this deal, anybody who is currently on an AT&T or Verizon plan and wants to switch to Sprint, must first furnish a copy of their current bills, and either upload them to Sprint's website, or hand-deliver them to any official Sprint store. Sprint will then evaluate the bill submitted, and decide which Sprint plan matches it in terms of calls, text messaging, and data allotment. Sprint will then offer that matching plan for half the price of the defecting subscriber's current AT&T or Verizon plan.

For instance, a customer who hands in a bill for a Verizon family plan costing $260 each month will be offered a family plan with similar inclusions but only for $130 each month.

Sprint already launched a promotion wherein it covered early termination fees up to $350 in the form of a prepaid Visa gift card. This can be paired with the new Cut Your Bill in Half promo, as long as the customer qualifies.

There are a few caveats, of course. One, those who avail of this promo will not be able to buy a subsidized handset from Sprint. They must sign up for the carrier's leasing program, make installment payments, or buy the device outright at its full retail price. Two, participants will have to turn in their current AT&T or Verizon handsets to Sprint. Understandably, it would be weird using an AT&T or Verizon device on Sprint's network, but still, you would be parting ways with something that you've gotten used to. What if you don't have a smartphone to turn in? (Got lost, perhaps?) Sprint will then charge you $200 per line of service. It is not clear yet what Sprint plans to do with the devices that are turned in though. 

Sprint's Cut Your Bill in Half promo is offered on a limited time only. However, people who participate in the deal will be able to keep enjoying discounted bills in the future as long as they do not add more data or minutes. Once they do, their plans will be reverted the normal pricing structure.

One more thing -- this promo is off limits to T-Mobile subscribers. One possible reason is that T-Mobile is already competing with Sprint in offering slashed data prices in a manner that the other carriers, AT&T and Verizon, are not. 

And because the promo is designed to lure AT&T and Verizon subscribers, Sprint's own existing subscribers will not be able to take advantage of the deal. Find out what other deals Sprint is offering right now -- start comparing Sprint plans and phones now.

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          AT&T Includes Data Throttling To GoPhone Prepaid Plans        
ATT Includes Data Throttling To GoPhone Prepaid Plans

AT&T has made changes to two its high-end GoPhone prepaid smartphone plans. The carrier's $60 and $45 prepaid smartphone plans now include unlimited calls and text messaging, plus 2.5 gigabytes and 1 gigabytes of data, respectively. 

Previously, subscribers would have to pay $10 for 1 gigabyte or 500 megabytes of extra data. But now with the latest changes in the GoPhone prepaid plans, once subscribers use up all of their high-speed allotment, they will still continue to get data -- it is just going to be throttled at speeds of up to 128 kbps (unlike before wherein the data gets completely cut off). 

AT&T's prepaid plan will keep on listing those $10 for 1 gigabyte/500 megabyte options, which means subscribers can still pay extra to add more high-speed data to their plans. 

We know, we know -- 128 kbps is certainly not much. Still, it is a better deal compared to having your data discontinued entirely if you do not want to or can not pay extra for additional data usage. 

So if you are currently under any one of AT&T's high-end prepaid smartphone plans, you no longer have to worry about your data getting cut off as your megabyte allotment is about to be used up, even if you still have a number of days left on your bill. 

Say, for example, you are currently under a 1 gigabyte data plan and you have already reached 1 gigabyte but still have 8 days left on the bill. Before, you wouldn't be able to get any additional data, and even if you did, you would be charged with the overage. 

Well, that changes now with AT&T's latest tweaks on its GoPhone prepaid smartphone plans. Instead of getting cut off, you simply get throttled data, down to speeds of up to 128 kbps. 

Let's face it -- 128 kbps is definitely slow by today's standards. But it is still unlimited, which means you can still download to your heart's content, just not as fast as you would prefer.

In related news, AT&T has also announced a new monthly plan for those in the United States, Canada,and Mexico. In this plan, users in those regions can enjoy unlimited calls, text messaging, and data with 1 gigabyte of high-speed data when in the US, for $55 per month. 

If you take your device and plan across the border to either Canada or Mexico, you can make calls at $0.01 per minute, send unlimited text, picture and video messages, and even purchase a $25 1 gigabyte data plan. 

If you are within the US, you get to enjoy unlimited text messaging to Canada, Mexico, and to more than 100 other countries.

Know more about AT&T deals -- start comparing AT&T plans here.

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          Nexus 6 Pre-Orders Start November 12th At AT&T; Goes On Sale November 14th At Sprint        
Nexus 6 Preorders at ATT and Sprint

Good news for Nexus 6 fans. Google's latest Nexus phablet will start to become available for purchase at two major wireless carriers this week. 

AT&T has confirmed that the Nexus 6 will become available for pre-ordering starting on Wednesday, November 12th. The device is priced at $249 on-contract. Buyers, however, can opt to purchase the phablet at its full retail price of $682.99 and pay off that total amount over the course of 20, 24, or 30 regular monthly payments via AT&T's Next 12, Next 18, and Next 24 plans, respectively. Unfortunately, AT&T has not yet provided any shipping estimates for the Nexus 6 as of this writing. But it will not be long now until the carrier makes announcement regarding availability.

Two days later on Friday, November 14th, the Nexus 6 will become available on Sprint's stores. As announced by Sprint, the phablet will be priced at $696 off-contract, with $0 down payment and 24 regular monthly payments of $29 through the carrier's Easy Pay plan. 

Also, it should be noted that Sprint will only be offering the Midnight Blue 32 gigabyte edition of the Nexus 6 smartphone.

As one might notice, the device does have a rather high price tag. That may not be too surprising. The Nexus 6 smartphone after all sports an enormous 6-inch 2560 by 1440 resolution display screen, and a 13-megapixel rear camera. 

Hardware-wise, it packs a Snapdragon 805 processor, 32 gigabytes (or 64 gigabytes) of internal storage, 3 gigabytes of random access memory (RAM), and a powerful 3,220 mAh battery.

It is also the first smartphone to have Android 5.0 Lollipop, the newest version of the Android mobile operating system. This updated edition of the world's most popular smartphone OS is truly a joy to behold, featuring a neater design further enhanced with animations and a more user-friendly interface and environment.

In the last two weeks, the Nexus 6 has only been made available through the Google Play Store and directly from Motorola, the phone maker who collaborated with Google in bringing the phablet to life.

In a few days, users will be able to get them from two of the four major wireless carriers in 
the United States. While AT&T and Sprint have already joined the party, many are expecting the other big boys (T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless) to follow suit.

Interested to learn more about AT&T and Sprint offers? Browse AT&T phones and plans here, or explore Sprint deals here.

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          Comment on Episode 160: Gaming, Art, and Music with Scott and Trez by Episode 17 – Lite Vs Heavy Systems – 1d4cast Podcast        
[…] The Jank Cast Episode 160 […]
          Comment on Episode 197: What's Wrong With Bein' Sexy? by Joe        
I wish our comment system made comments more obvious, because I could have found out about the slash podcast weeks ago! Thanks, Teogil!
          Comment on Episode 198- What’s Up With Licensed Games? by David Jay        
Uemei, yeah I was thinking the Cortex+ games (I've only played Marvel Heroic and Firefly myself) the whole cast. Those games did a great job of emulating the feel of their IPs. The system's a little too fiddly/complex for me personally (Firefly less so than Marvel), but I'd say they're the best adaptations I've played.
          Comment on Episode 198- What’s Up With Licensed Games? by Uemei        
As a counterpoint to Todd's supposition that story games can do it better I submit that Mass Effect Apocalypse, Mass Effect the Story Game, and the aforementioned Mass Effect Fate are all three terrible fan adaptations of the IP, mostly due to the fact that the creators placed the system before the IP. The most disappointing part of the AW hacks is that Dungeon World is such a good adaptation of the AW engine to D&D that they had no real excuse for keeping it all same-y. Likewise each version of Cortex+ I've played bar Firefly, sorry PK, felt very well adapted to the TV shows and comics they were simulating. Additionally; and this is directed to mrm1138: Do yourself a favor and hang the DC M&M and track down copies of Smallville and Marvel Heroic. The only way you could make a better (read more complete) supers game would be if you hacked the life path system from Smallville into Marvel Heroic!
          Comment on Episode 198- What’s Up With Licensed Games? by mrm1138        
I had a couple questions about the topics brought up on this episode. 1) Re: a Conan RPG, have you tried either Barbarians of Lemuria or On Mighty Thews? I unfortunately haven't yet had a chance to play either, but I know they were both made specifically to emulate the sword & sorcery genre. I'd be curious to hear how you feel they stack up. 2) DC Adventures/Mutants & Masterminds are very well received superhero games, but considering that they are derived from the d20 system, how do you feel they stack up to something like BASH!, which uses 2d6 times the attribute, or Supers!, which uses a dice pool?
          Did someone say Pizza?        
After a smashing Shabbos, the campers were complaining that there was no melava malka - after hearing chants of "We want pizza!", we decided to show them what pizza means EGP style. Off we went to Q-Cumber's and we were in for an amazing treat! 














For more pictures, click here

          5 Best Joomla Security Extensions For You to Breathe Easy        





Apart from WordPress and Drupal content management systems, Joomla is the most popular CMS used all over the world to power websites of all sorts and sizes. Just like any other open-source CMS, Joomla powered sites also have to deal with hacking attacks. In fact, almost every day Joomla powered site encounter callous hackers who mutilate website pages, upload backdoors and steal or delete sensitive information. And sadly, most of the attacks cost website owners substantial amount of time and money in getting the damage fixed. And so, it becomes needful for website owners take all the possible measures into account that helps to strengthen security of their Joomla site.

In this post we have come up with a list of remarkably useful Joomla extensions that helps to secure your Joomla website. 



jHackGuard

 










jHackGuard is an extension designed by Siteground that helps to protect the websites of Joomla users from being hacked. The extension is made publicly available to Joomla site owners, irrespective of whether they're using Siteground hosting services or not. This extension is a blend of a security plugin (that does the system work) and component (that helps to handle configurations) – that helps to protect a Joomla site by filtering the user's input data and integrating more PHP security settings. But, the plugin is disabled so that filters don't prevent authenticated administrators from performing their administrative tasks.


jHackGuard is compatible with Joomla version 3 and higher. And so, if you want to protect your site security running on an older Joomla version, you can choose to download the appropriate versions of jHackGuard for the older Joomla versions such as jHackGuard for Joomla 1.5 or other.







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