First computer 1946
Friday, January 31, 2014
Thursday, January 30, 2014
A false tale often betrays itself.
A fine appearance is a poor substitute for inward worth.
A man is known by the company he keeps.
A villain may disguise himself, but he will not deceive the wise.
Acquaintance softens prejudices.
An act of kindness is a good investment.
Avoid a remedy that is worse than the disease.
Be on guard against men who can strike from a distance.
Be reasonable in your criticism.
Benefits bestowed upon the evil-disposed increase their means of injuring you.
Better a certain enemy than a doubtful friend.
Beware of flatterers.
Beware of hypocrites.
Beware of the counsel of the unfortunate.
Change of habit cannot alter Nature.
Children are not to be blamed for the faults of their parents.
Choose the lesser of two evils.
Clothes do not make the man.
Contentment with our lot is an element of happiness.
Counsel without help is useless.
Count the cost before you commit yourselves.
Do not attempt to hide things which cannot be hid.
Hence today, I believe that I am acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator: by defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting for the work of the Lord.
Attributed to Adolf Hitler from his speeches
“But Ivan The Terrible would execute someone and then spend a long time repenting and praying. God got his way in this matter; Ivan ought to have been more decisive!”
Attributed to Stalin from his writings
“Only in the cities of these people that the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance, you shall not leave alive anything that breathes. But you shall utterly destroy them: the Hittite and the Amorite, the Canaanite and the Perizzite, the Hivite and the Jebusite, as the Lord your God has commanded you, so that they may not teach you to do according to all their detestable things which they have done for their Gods, so that you would sin against the Lord Your God.”
Attributed to God from his Bible
Wednesday, January 29, 2014
Mosaic of a satyr and nymph from The House of the Faun, the home of wealthy Pompeian aristocrats.
Most people associate Pompeii with the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD, an event which killed over 16,000 people and “froze” the surrounding area in ash, leaving an entire city nearly perfectly preserved for posterity. One of Pompeii’s more endearing qualities is its preservation of the less respectable (but more recognizable) aspects of humanity and that is its graffiti. Here are some more of its finest, or at least well written pieces, and maybe that’s the most important thing of all to show how little we have changed or perhaps ever will.
(Bar of Astylus and Pardalus): Lovers are like bees in that they live a honeyed life
(Bar of Athictus; right of the door): I screwed the barmaid
(House of Caecilius Iucundus): Whoever loves, let him flourish. Let him perish who knows not love. Let him perish twice over whoever forbids love.
(barracks of the Julian-Claudian gladiators; column in the peristyle): Celadus the Thracian gladiator is the delight of all the girls
(vico degli Scienziati): Cruel Lalagus, why do you not love me?
(Wood-Working Shop of Potitus): What a lot of tricks you use to deceive, innkeeper. You sell water but drink unmixed wine
(atrium of a House of the Large Brothel): Blondie has taught me to hate dark-haired girls. I shall hate them, if I can, but I wouldn’t mind loving them. Pompeian Venus Fisica wrote this.
(atrium of the House of Pinarius): If anyone does not believe in Venus, they should gaze at my girl friend
(vicolo del Panattiere, House of the Vibii, Merchants): Atimetus got me pregnant
(vicolo del Panattiere, House of the Vibii, Merchants): Figulus loves Idaia
(Bar of Hedone (or Colepius) on the Street of the Augustales; on the corner toward the lupinare): Hedone says, “You can get a drink here for only one coin. You can drink better wine for two coins. You can drink Falernian for four coins.”
(House of Caprasius Primus): I don’t want to sell my husband, not for all the gold in the world
(Vico d’ Eumachia, small room of a possible brothel): Gaius Valerius Venustus, soldier of the 1st praetorian cohort, in the century of Rufus, screwer of women
(Vico d’ Eumachia, small room of a possible brothel): Vibius Restitutus slept here alone and missed his darling Urbana
(corridor in the theater): Methe, slave of Cominia, from Atella, loves Chrestus. May Pompeian Venus be dear to both of them and may they always live in harmony.
(above a bench outside the Marine Gate): If anyone sits here, let him read this first of all: if anyone wants a screw, he should look for Attice; she costs 4 sestertii.
(in the basilica): No young buck is complete until he has fallen in love
(in the basilica): Chie, I hope your hemorrhoids rub together so much that they hurt worse than when they every have before!
(in the basilica): Let everyone one in love come and see. I want to break Venus’ ribs with clubs and cripple the goddess’ loins. If she can strike through my soft chest, then why can’t I smash her head with a club?
(in the basilica): Phileros is a eunuch!
(in the basilica): If you are able, but not willing, why do you put off our joy and kindle hope and tell me always to come back tomorrow. So, force me to die since you force me to live without you. Your gift will be to stop torturing me. Certainly, hope returns to the lover what it has once snatched away.
(in the basilica): Take hold of your servant girl whenever you want to; it’s your right
(in the basilica): Love dictates to me as I write and Cupid shows me the way, but may I die if god should wish me to go on without you
(House of the Centenary; in the atrium): My lusty son, with how many women have you had sexual relations?
(triclinium of a house): Restitutus has deceived many girls.
Nuceria Necropolis (on a tomb): Greetings to Primigenia of Nuceria. I would wish to become a signet ring for no more than an hour, so that I might give you kisses dispatched with your signature.
Herculaneum (bar/inn joined to the maritime baths): Two friends were here. While they were, they had bad service in every way from a guy named Epaphroditus. They threw him out and spent 105 and half sestertii most agreeably on whores.
Herculaneum (bar/inn joined to the maritime baths): Apelles Mus and his brother Dexter each pleasurably had sex with two girls twice.
The Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping said: “It doesn’t matter whether the cat is white or black as long as it catches mice.” He said it at a time when it was politically dangerous and suffered greatly for it. His son was thrown out of a 3rd story building and rendered paralyzed in a wheelchair for the rest of his life; while Deng himself was stripped of all status and sent to a place that must have been called nowhere. In the end, he triumphed and became the greatest leader China had ever seen while his son continues to champion human rights at every level since, and especially those with disabilities.
One can only hope in Ireland that any new party which may be born or re-born on these shores anew can come to embrace similar tactics as Deng to find their political footing, and be centre stage rather than forever be on the margins because of the inherent political and institutional corruption that has blighted this country since 1922.
I believe any party worth its morals laced with idealism should put the economy at the centre stage of all its ideals, and corruption as its other main objective to achieve it.
Any parties core objectives today may be too narrow and cannot describe everyone in the Ireland we have now. The single biggest immigrant group who can vote in Irish elections today are British, followed by the Americans, and then the Poles. It will take more than broad rhetoric to win the hearts and mind of either, against the apathy and disgust of voters who are still suffering and reeling from the bill and ultimate payment for what corruption means in monetary terms. Much work needs to be done.
We have seen a false economy come and go and its physical footprint in ghost estates across the country. Not so visible is diminishing services of health and education that is the core of any political ideology. Get sick and you will see it. You know all this. Irelands only success story today is its ability to borrow money rather than create wealth. The diminishing median businesses cannot stand and support themselves anymore, let alone a wider economy, or its tax liabilities because of been given a bill without choice from the crime syndicate that is fianna Fail and their banker/gangster friends. The only thing that has changed at all is the balance of power festooned with the same liars wearing different masks. It is a wonder there will be an electorate at all because of their undoubted apathy. There is always a hope and a way.
It is for any new political party or person to show that way, if integrity still exists without compromise, and when it does it will get the credibility that it seeks and be better able to realize its citizens ideals and expectations. It is paramount not to repeat parish pump politics ever again for that can only mean a pump without a parish, where the traditional villages will become empty but die permanently this time; and traditional gossip will become the sport of the birds in the trees.
Do something before nothing can be done.
By Tara Brady
A Catholic priest who juggles his job with property developing has landed a £20million deal - and will donate all the spare profits to church charity projects.
Father Gregory Grant, 63, went into business with a parishioner in 1998 and now runs the PG Group from a converted office above his Bristol church.
The company has built up a large portfolio by buying dilapidated city centre buildings and turning them into much-needed accommodation.
Father Gregory Grant, 63, went into business with a parishioner in 1998 and now runs the PG Group from a converted office above his Bristol church
But now they have moved into the big league by buying a 13-storey office block which they plan to convert into 120 new homes.
Father Gregory has always considered God to be the 'third partner' in the business and as such gives a third of the profits to church projects.
To date the company has handed out more than £1million to charity and he expects the new deal - his biggest to date - to raise that figure even further.
The parish priest of St Patrick’s Church, in Redfield, Bristol, said: 'God gives you money simply so that you can give it away again.
'My idea of fun is working out the best way to make money so that we can find a way of giving it away. It’s very satisfying.
'The work of the priest is often cyclical, with the same services coming around again each year.
'But the world of property management has projects, which have a beginning, a middle and an end.'
After being ordained in 1977, Father Gregory spent four years as curate at Corpus Christi Church, Weston-super-Mare, where he became involved in his first development project.
The church had an old Scout hall facing the sea and Father Gregory made £40,000 by selling it for redevelopment and using the money to build a meeting room.
Later he was appointed parish priest of St Patrick’s in Bristol, which was scheduled for closure because of its decaying 65-year old church and dwindling 200 congregation.
Father Gregory opted to rebuild the church, which now has a new building, convent, 22 retirement homes and a 67-bed nursing home - and its congregation has grown to 600.
He officially launched the business in 1998 with parishioner and friend Peter Bradley in a bid to raise a small amount for their local community.
Mr Bradley died from a brain tumour a year later aged 43 and his wife Fiona took over his role as trustee.
In 2002, Father Gregory launched The Grant Bradley Trust, which helps to fight poverty in the Third World by providing housing and building schools.
Father Gregory works from 7.30am to 11pm Monday to Friday in a converted office above his church, but is still able to tend to his parishioners in the evening and weekends.
The PG Group’s latest deal is worth more than £20m alone for the firm.
The block of old offices will be transformed into flats for more than 120 families and will include roof gardens, a gymnasium, a cafe and a shop.
Director Stuart Gaiger said: 'We already have permitted development rights for all internal works but now we are seeking permission to provide all the apartments with balconies and also to replace large areas of the building’s concrete cladding with glass.
'This work will considerably enhance the slightly austere appearance of Lewins Place and boost the cityscape of which it is an integral part.
'Following on from the sell out success of The Eye, our iconic eye shaped apartments complex close to Temple Meads, this will be our largest city redevelopment project to date.'
Tuesday, January 28, 2014
From Herculaneum (a bar/inn joined to the maritime baths):
"Two friends were here. While they were, they had bad service in every way from a guy named Epaphroditus. They threw him out and spent 105 and half sestertii most agreeably on whores."
From just outside the Vesuvius gate:
"Defecator, may everything turn out okay so that you can leave this place."
From the peristyle of the Tavern of Verecundus:
"Restitutus says: 'Restituta, take off your tunic, please, and show us your hairy privates.'"
From Herculaneum (a bar/inn joined to the maritime baths): "Apelles the chamberlain with Dexter, a slave of Caesar, ate here most agreeably and had a screw at the same time."
From the basilica:
"O walls, you have held up so much tedious graffiti that I am amazed that you have not already collapsed in ruin."
Gaius Julius Caesar 63 BC-14 AD
Johann Sebastian Bach 1685- 1750
Leo Tolstoy 1828-1910
Nelson Mandela 1918- 2013
Steve Jobs 1955- 2011
Aristotle 384 BC-322 BC
Bill Clinton 1946-
John Lennon 1940-1980
Charlie Chaplin 1889-1977
Steve Mc Queen 1930-1980
Folk singer Pete Seeger dies aged 94
Tuesday, January 28, 2014 - 08:13 AM
Pete Seeger, the banjo-picking troubadour who sang for migrant workers, college students and star-struck presidents in a career that introduced generations of Americans to their folk music heritage, has died at the age of 94.
Seeger’s grandson, Kitama Cahill-Jackson, said his grandfather died peacefully in his sleep at around 9.30pm last night in the New York Presbyterian Hospital, where he had been for six days. Family members were with him.
“He was chopping wood 10 days ago,” Mr Cahill-Jackson recalled.
Seeger – with his a lanky frame, banjo and full white beard – was a well-known figure in folk music. He performed with Woody Guthrie in his younger days and marched with Occupy Wall Street protesters in his 90s, leaning on two canes.
He wrote or co-wrote If I Had A Hammer, Turn, Turn, Turn, Where Have All The Flowers Gone and Kisses Sweeter Than Wine. He lent his voice against Hitler and nuclear power. A cheerful warrior, he typically delivered his broadsides with an affable air and his banjo strapped on.
Seeger playing on the Johnny Cash show in 1970.
“Be wary of great leaders,” he told the Associated Press two days after a 2011 Manhattan Occupy march. “Hope that there are many, many small leaders.”
With The Weavers, a quartet put together in 1948, Seeger helped set the stage for a national folk revival. The group – Seeger, Lee Hays, Ronnie Gilbert and Fred Hellerman – churned out hit recordings of Goodnight Irene, Tzena, Tzena and On Top Of Old Smokey.
Seeger also was credited with popularising We Shall Overcome, which he printed in his publication People’s Song in 1948. He later said his only contribution to the anthem of the civil rights movement was changing the second word from “will” to “shall”, which he said “opens up the mouth better”.
“Every kid who ever sat around a campfire singing an old song is indebted in some way to Pete Seeger,” Arlo Guthrie once said.
Seeger’s musical career was always tightly linked with his political activism, in which he advocated for causes ranging from civil rights to the clean-up of his beloved Hudson River. Seeger said he left the Communist Party around 1950 and later renounced it. But the association dogged him for years.
He was kept off commercial television for more than a decade after tangling with the House Un-American Activities Committee in 1955. Repeatedly pressed by the committee to reveal whether he had sung for Communists, Seeger responded sharply: “I love my country very dearly, and I greatly resent this implication that some of the places that I have sung and some of the people that I have known, and some of my opinions, whether they are religious or philosophical, or I might be a vegetarian, make me any less of an American.”
He was charged with contempt of Congress, but the sentence was overturned on appeal.
Seeger called the 1950s, years when he was denied broadcast exposure, the high point of his career. He was on the road touring college campuses, spreading the music he, Guthrie, Huddie “Leadbelly” Ledbetter and others had created or preserved.
“The most important job I did was go from college to college to college to college, one after the other, usually small ones,” he told the Associated Press in 2006. “And I showed the kids there’s a lot of great music in this country they never played on the radio.”
His scheduled return to commercial network television on the highly rated Smothers Brothers variety show in 1967 was hailed as a nail in the coffin of the blacklist. But CBS cut out his Vietnam protest song Waist Deep In The Big Muddy, and Seeger accused the network of censorship.
He finally got to sing it five months later in a stirring return appearance, although one station, in Detroit, cut the song’s last stanza: “Now every time I read the papers/That old feelin’ comes on/We’re waist deep in the Big Muddy/And the big fool says to push on.”
Seeger’s output included dozens of albums and single records for adults and children.
He also was the author or co-author of American Favourite Ballads, The Bells Of Rhymney, How To Play The Five-String Banjo, Henscratches And Flyspecks, The Incompleat Folksinger, The Foolish Frog And Abiyoyo, Carry It On, Everybody Says Freedom and Where Have All The Flowers Gone.
He appeared in the films To Hear My Banjo Play in 1946 andTell Me That You Love Me, Junie Moon in 1970. A reunion concert of the original Weavers in 1980 was filmed as a documentary titledWasn’t That A Time.
By the 1990s, no longer a party member but still styling himself a communist with a small C, Seeger was heaped with national honours.
Official Washington sang along – the audience must sing, was the rule at a Seeger concert – when it lionised him at the Kennedy Centre in 1994. President Bill Clinton hailed him as “an inconvenient artist who dared to sing things as he saw them”.
Seeger was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1996 as an early influence. Ten years later, Bruce Springsteen honored him with We Shall Overcome: The Seeger Sessions, a rollicking reinterpretation of songs sung by Seeger. While pleased with the album, Seeger said he wished it was “more serious.”
A 2009 concert at Madison Square Garden to mark Seeger’s 90th birthday featured Springsteen, Dave Matthews, Eddie Vedder and Emmylou Harris among the performers.
Seeger was a 2014 Grammy Awards nominee in the Best Spoken Word category, which was won by Stephen Colbert.
Seeger’s sometimes ambivalent relationship with rock was most famously on display when Dylan “went electric” at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival.
Witnesses said Seeger became furious backstage as the amped-up band played, though just how furious is debated. Seeger dismissed the legendary tale that he looked for an axe to cut Dylan’s sound cable, and said his objection was not to the type of music but only that the guitar mix was so loud you couldn’t hear Dylan’s words.
Seeger maintained his reedy 6ft 2in frame into old age, though he wore a hearing aid and conceded that his voice was pretty much shot. He relied on his audiences to make up for his diminished voice, feeding his listeners the lines and letting them sing out.
“I can’t sing much,” he said. “I used to sing high and low. Now I have a growl somewhere in between.”
Nonetheless, in 1997 he won a Grammy for best traditional folk album for Pete.
Seeger was born in New York City on May 3 1919, into an artistic family whose roots traced to religious dissenters of colonial America. His mother, Constance, played violin and taught; his father, Charles, a musicologist, was a consultant to the Resettlement Administration, which gave artists work during the Depression. His uncle Alan Seeger, the poet, wrote I Have A Rendezvous With Death.
Pete Seeger said he fell in love with folk music when he was 16, at a music festival in North Carolina in 1935. His half-brother, Mike Seeger, and half-sister, Peggy Seeger, also became noted performers.
He learned the five-string banjo, an instrument he rescued from obscurity and played the rest of his life in a long-necked version of his own design. On the skin of Seeger’s banjo was the phrase, “This machine surrounds hate and forces it to surrender” – a nod to his old pal Guthrie, who emblazoned his guitar with “This machine kills fascists.”
Dropping out of Harvard in 1938 after two years as a disillusioned sociology major, he hit the road, picking up folk tunes as he hitchhiked or hopped freights.
“The sociology professor said ’Don’t think that you can change the world. The only thing you can do is study it’,” Seeger said in October 2011.
In 1940, with Guthrie and others, he was part of the Almanac Singers and performed benefits for disaster relief and other causes.
He and Guthrie also toured migrant camps and union halls. He sang on overseas radio broadcasts for the Office of War Information early in the Second World War. In the Army, he spent three and a half years in Special Services, entertaining soldiers in the South Pacific, and made corporal.
Pete and Toshi Seeger were married July 20 1943. The couple built their cabin in Beacon after the Second World War and stayed on the high spot of land by the Hudson River for the rest of their lives together. The couple raised three children. Toshi Seeger died in July aged 91.
The Hudson River was a particular concern of Seeger. He took the sloop Clearwater, built by volunteers in 1969, up and down the Hudson, singing to raise money to clean the water and fight polluters.
He also offered his voice in opposition to racism and the death penalty. He got himself jailed for five days for blocking traffic in Albany in 1988 in support of Tawana Brawley, a black teenager whose claim of having been raped by white men was later discredited. He continued to take part in peace protests during the war in Iraq, and he continued to lend his name to causes.
“Can’t prove a damn thing, but I look upon myself as old grandpa,” Seeger told the AP in 2008 when asked to reflect on his legacy. “There’s not dozens of people now doing what I try to do, not hundreds, but literally thousands...The idea of using music to try to get the world together is now all over the place.”