Daily Archives: November 11, 2016

Trump reshuffles transition team


Trump reshuffles transition team

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President-elect Donald Trump is shaking up his transition team as he plunges into the work of setting up his administration, elevating Vice President-elect Mike Pence to head the operations.

It amounts to a demotion for New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who had been running Trump’s transition planning for months.

On the heels of Trump‘s upset victory this week, the Republican‘s team has been scrambling to identify people for top White House jobs and Cabinet posts. It’s an enormous undertaking that must be well in hand by the time Trump is inaugurated on Jan. 20.

In a statement Friday, Trump said Pence would “build on the initial work” done by Christie.

“Together, we will begin the urgent task of rebuilding this nation – specifically jobs, security and opportunity,” Trump said.

Christie was a loyal adviser to Trump for much of the campaign and came close to being the businessman’s pick for running mate. But Trump ultimately went with Indiana Gov. Pence, a former congressman with Washington experience and deep ties to conservatives.

Christie will still be involved in the transition, joining a cluster of other steadfast Trump supporters serving as vice chairs: former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson, retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions.

For Trump, who ran on a pledge to “drain the swamp” of Washington insiders, the team is strikingly heavy on those with long political resumes.

In addition, three of Trump’s adult children – Don. Jr., Eric and Ivanka – are on the transition executive committee, along with Jared Kushner, Ivanka’s husband. Kushner played a significant role in Trump’s campaign and was spotted at the White House Thursday meeting with President Barack Obama’s chief of staff.

Pence said the transition staff is made up of the right people to “bring about fundamental change in Washington.”

After ending his own failed campaign for president, Christie emerged as one of Trump’s most enthusiastic supporters. He nearly became Trump’s running mate but was edged out by Pence.

Trump and Christie grew apart through the last stretch of the campaign. The governor became increasingly frustrated that Trump wouldn’t listen to his advice, particularly over the response to the release of a 1995 video in which the businessman is heard making predatory comments about women.

Christie is also facing calls for impeachment in New Jersey following the conviction of two former aides in the George Washington Bridge lane-closing trial. Christie has denied any knowledge of the lane closures until weeks or months after they occurred in September 2013.

The governor was notably absent from the steady stream of advisers entering Trump’s eponymous skyscraper in New York for meetings Friday. Among the first decisions facing the president-elect is whom to choose as chief of staff, a key post that will set the tone for Trump’s White House and be a key conduit to Capitol Hill and Cabinet agencies.

Trump is said to be considering Steve Bannon, his campaign chairman and a conservative media executive, and Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus for the role. Neither has significant policy experience, though Priebus is well-liked in Washington and has deep ties with key lawmakers.

Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s campaign manager, is also said to be in the mix for a senior job. Conway is a veteran Republican pollster who formed a strong rapport with the candidate after taking the helm of his campaign in the general election.

While Trump has long led a large business, the scope of the federal government exceeds any of his previous endeavors. Those around Trump, who is known as a hands-on executive, say he’ll likely have to make adjustments in his leadership style and decision-making, including more delegating.

Trump has chafed at that a bit, but he has signaled willingness to relinquish some but not all, personal control. He also seems reluctant to expand his core group of aides beyond the inner circle with whom he feels comfortable.

(AP)

Today’s Holiday:Heurigen Parties


Today’s Holiday:
Heurigen Parties

St. Martin’s Day, November 11, is the traditional time when wine taverns in Austria offer the first new wines of the year. Wine feasts called Heurigen parties abound in these taverns throughout the country and are scheduled according to an official Heurigenkalender. Traditional foods served with the new wine include sausage, cheese, and bread. Many taverns also stage operettas and other shows for the season.: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

Today’s Birthday:Alessandro Moreschi (1858)


Today’s Birthday:
Alessandro Moreschi (1858)

Moreschi was the late 19th century’s most famous castrato—a male singer who undergoes castration before puberty and, as a result, retains a soprano or alto voice that becomes extraordinarily powerful as he develops the lung capacity and physical bulk of an adult. He was first soprano in the Sistine Chapel choir for 30 years and was the only castrato of the bel canto tradition to make solo sound recordings. What do modern music critics say about the singing featured in these recordings?: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

This Day in History:Highwayman Joseph “Blueskin” Blake Hanged (1724)


This Day in History:
Highwayman Joseph “Blueskin” Blake Hanged (1724)

In the early 18th century, English criminal Jonathan Wild maintained a highly organized gang of thieves and long escaped punishment by posing as an instrument of justice and helping the authorities catch other criminals independent of, or rebellious to, his control. One such criminal was Blake, who was arrested after a burglary. He was tried, convicted, and hanged. What other notorious criminal—Blake’s partner in crime—escaped from prison when Blake attacked a witness at his trial?: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

Quote of the Day:Jonathan Swift


Quote of the Day:
Jonathan Swift

There’s none so blind as they that won’t see.: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

Article of the Day:The Vienna Dioscurides


Article of the Day:
The Vienna Dioscurides

The Vienna Dioscurides is an early 6th-century copy of De Materia Medica, a manuscript first created by the ancient Greek physician and pharmacologist Dioscurides. A precursor to all modern pharmacopeias, it remained in practical use until about 1600. The Vienna Dioscurides contains more than 400 pictures of animals and plants and is the earliest known manuscript to use a solid gold background. It is also the oldest surviving illustrated treatise on what type of animal?: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

Word of the Day:rapier


Word of the Day:
rapier
Definition: (noun) A straight sword with a narrow blade and two edges.
Synonyms: tuck
Usage: Strickland employed not the rapier of sarcasm but the bludgeon of invective.
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Singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen dies at age 82


Singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen dies at age 82

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Leonard Cohen, rock music’s man of letters whose songs fused religious imagery with themes of redemption and sexual desire, earning him critical and popular acclaim, has died at age 82, said a statement on his Facebook page.

“It is with profound sorrow we report that legendary poet, songwriter and artist, Leonard Cohen has passed away,” a statement on theFacebook page said. “We have lost one of music’s most revered and prolific visionaries.”

The statement did not provide further details on Cohen’s death, and representatives for the singer could not immediately be reached for comment. It said a memorial was planned in Los Angeles, where Cohen had lived for many years.

Cohen, a native of Quebec, was already a celebrated poet and novelist when he moved to New York in 1966 at age 31 to break into the music business.

Before long, critics were comparing him to Bob Dylan for the lyrical force of his songwriting.

Although he influenced many musicians and won many honors, including induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and the Order of Canada, Cohen rarely made the pop music charts with his sometimes moody folk-rock.

But Cohen’s most famous song, “Hallelujah,” in which he invoked the biblical King David and drew parallels between physical love and a desire for spiritual connection, has been covered hundreds of times since he released it in 1984.

“Hallelujah’s” long road to mass appeal was matched by Cohen’s own painstaking approach to writing it. He spent five years penning drafts, at one point banging his head on the floor of a hotel room in frustration.

The sacred and profane

Many of Cohen’s songs became hits for other acts, including Judy Collins, who helped Cohen gain fame by recording some of his early compositions in the 1960s.

Cohen’s most ardent admirers compared his works to spiritual prophecy. He sang about religion, which included references to Jesus Christ and Jewish traditions, as well as love and sex, political upheaval, regret and what he once called the search for “a kind of balance in the chaos of existence.”

His lyrics were deeply personal and at times took on an element of prayer, as in 1969’s “Bird on the Wire” in which he sang: “I swear by this song/And by all that I have done wrong/I will make it all up to thee.”

Cohen’s other well-known songs include “Suzanne,” “So Long, Marianne,” “Famous Blue Raincoat” and “The Future,” an apocalyptic 1992 recording in which he darkly intoned: “I’ve seen the future, brother/It is murder.”

The inspiration for “So Long, Marianne” was Cohen’s longtime romantic partner and muse Marianne Ihlen, a Norwegian woman he met while living on the Greek island of Hydra in the 1960s. A New Yorker profile of Cohen last month recounted how after being told in July she had only a few days left to live, he emailed her: “Well Marianne, it’s come to this time when we are really so old and our bodies are falling apart and I think I will follow you very soon.”

Two days later, he learned in an email she had died after reading his note.

Cohen toured extensively from 2008 to 2013 after being unable to collect most of a $9 million judgment against his former manager and lover, Kelley Lynch, whom he accused of draining his savings.

He released an album just last month, “You Want It Darker.” But the New Yorker described him as ailing, quoting him as saying he was more or less “confined to barracks” in his Los Angeles residence.

Meaning amid loss

Cohen’s nasal voice and deep-bass, conversational vocals were criticized by some as being monotone. British musician Paul Weller once called his melancholy style “music to slit your wrists to.”

But his work was also suffused with irony and self-deprecating humor, often touching on his relationship with fame and his reputation for romantic entanglements. “I got this rap as a kind of ladies’ man,” Cohen told Canada’s Globe and Mail in 2007. “And as I say in one of the poems, it has caused me to laugh, when I think of all the lonely nights.”

Born into a Jewish family in 1934 and raised in an affluent English-speaking neighborhood of Montreal, Cohen read Spanish poet Federico García Lorca as a teenager, learned to play guitar from a flamenco musician and formed a country band called the Buckskin Boys.

He attended McGill University in Montreal and published his first book of poetry shortly after graduation.

Living on grant money from the Canadian government and an inheritance from his family, Cohen published in the 1960s the poetry collections “The Spice-Box of Earth” and “Flowers for Hitler” and novels “The Favourite Game” and “Beautiful Losers.”

But disillusioned with his meager income, Cohen turned to songwriting and landed an audition in 1967 with John Hammond, the producer who had discovered Dylan.

Hammond signed him to Columbia Records, which would remain Cohen’s label for five decades.

Cohen toured widely but also sought solace in meditation, far from the public eye. For part of the 1990s, Cohen lived in a Zen Buddhist monastery in the San Gabriel Mountains just outside Los Angeles, where he handled tasks as menial as cleaning toilets.

Cohen, who never married, is survived by his daughter, Lorca, and by his son, Adam.

(REUTERS)

Nightingale: the book of longing, Leonard Cohen


Nightingale: the book of longing, Leonard Cohen

Leonard Cohen: Book of Longing…”You don’t want to go out any more”…


Leonard Cohen: Book of Longing…”You don’t want to go out any more”…

RIP MR. COHEN:  Watch “The traitor_Martha Wainwright_Leonard Cohen_I’m Your Man_720HD-022711.avi” on YouTube


“The Traitor” lyrics

LEONARD COHEN LYRICS


Download “The Traitor” Ringtone

“The Traitor”

Now the Swan it floated on the English river 
Ah the Rose of High Romance it opened wide 
A sun tanned woman yearned me through the summer 
and the judges watched us from the other side 
I told my mother “Mother I must leave you 
preserve my room but do not shed a tear 
Should rumour of a shabby ending reach you 
it was half my fault and half the atmosphere” 

But the Rose I sickened with a scarlet fever 
and the Swan I tempted with a sense of shame 
She said at last I was her finest lover 
and if she withered I would be to blame 

The judges said you missed it by a fraction 
rise up and brace your troops for the attack 
Ah the dreamers ride against the men of action 
Oh see the men of action falling back 

But I lingered on her thighs a fatal moment 
I kissed her lips as though I thirsted still 
My falsity had stung me like a hornet 
The poison sank and it paralysed my will 

I could not move to warn all the younger soldiers 
that they had been deserted from above 
So on battlefields from here to Barcelona 
I’m listed with the enemies of love 

And long ago she said “I must be leaving, 
Ah but keep my body here to lie upon 
You can move it up and down and when I’m sleeping 
Run some wire through that Rose and wind the Swan” 

So daily I renew my idle duty 
I touch her here and there — I know my place 
I kiss her open mouth and I praise her beauty 
and people call me traitor to my face

RIP MR. COHEN: Watch “Anthem, Leonard Cohen” on YouTube


“Anthem” lyrics

LEONARD COHEN LYRICS


Download “Anthem” Ringtone

“Anthem”

The birds they sang 
at the break of day 
Start again 
I heard them say 
Don’t dwell on what 
has passed away 
or what is yet to be. 
Ah the wars they will 
be fought again 
The holy dove 
She will be caught again 
bought and sold 
and bought again 
the dove is never free. 

Ring the bells that still can ring 
Forget your perfect offering 
There is a crack in everything 
That’s how the light gets in. 

We asked for signs 
the signs were sent: 
the birth betrayed 
the marriage spent 
Yeah the widowhood 
of every government — 
signs for all to see. 

I can’t run no more 
with that lawless crowd 
while the killers in high places 
say their prayers out loud. 
But they’ve summoned, they’ve summoned up 
a thundercloud 
and they’re going to hear from me. 

Ring the bells that still can ring … 

You can add up the parts 
but you won’t have the sum 
You can strike up the march, 
there is no drum 
Every heart, every heart 
to love will come 
but like a refugee. 

Ring the bells that still can ring 
Forget your perfect offering 
There is a crack, a crack in everything 
That’s how the light gets in. 

Ring the bells that still can ring 
Forget your perfect offering 
There is a crack, a crack in everything 
That’s how the light gets in. 
That’s how the light gets in. 
That’s how the light gets in.