Archive - Jun 15, 2013

Date

Vidor

Here is the famous toccata from Vidor's 5th organ symphony played on one of the monstrous organs of Europe, a Cavaille-Coll in St. Ouen, France. Turn up the sound! Experience the bass! Imagine unleashing such violence by simply tapping on a pedal with your foot. The bass is overwhelming in this recording. I wonder what it is like in person. Perhaps it is more balanced. But can you imagine hearing this sound before there were loudspeakers and electronic sound systems to dull our senses? 

Iran

The Iranian people elected a moderate president today, one who promises to cooperate with the West to get sanctions removed. Iran just got a lot less dangerous, and on its own.  What a disaster it would have been Dick Cheney and the neoconservatives had gotten their wish for a war with Iran. Such a war would have strengthened radical elements. We would likely still be there. And it wouldn't be pretty. 

President Obama's decision to arm Syrian rebels isn't pleasing anybody. I am ambivalent. Now that we are becoming more energy self-sufficient, can't we back away from our excessive involvement in the Mideast?