05/03/2015 archive

Rant of the Week: Jon Stewart – Baltimore on Fire

Baltimore on Fire

In Memoriam: Ben E. King September 28, 1938 – April 30, 2015

Rhythm and Blues legend Ben E. King has died at the age of 76. Born Benjamin Earl Nelson on September 28, 1938, in Henderson, North Carolina, and moved to Harlem, New York, in 1947.

Ben E King appeared at a time when pop music was pausing for breath between the wakeup call sounded by the first generation of American rock’n’rollers and the blast of energy provided from across the water by the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. His distinctive voice, shaped by the fervour of black church music but capable of a suavely seductive romanticism, was heard on such hits as Spanish Harlem and Stand By Me.

King, who has died aged 76, first made his name as the lead singer of the Drifters, with a handful of hit singles that embodied the best elements of Brill Building pop, in which the sounds of rhythm and blues and gospel music were brought to bear on custom-made songs with simple, catchy and inventive melodies, swathed in imaginative, often sophisticated arrangements.

Stand By Me

Spanish Harlem

Save the Last Dance For Me

And then… it’s just fun.

On This Day In History May 3

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

Click on images to enlarge

May 3 is the 123rd day of the year (124th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 242 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1919, Pete Seeger, folk singer, activist, environmentalist was born in NYC.

On July 26, 1956, the House of Representatives voted 373 to 9 to cite Pete Seeger and seven others (including playwright Arthur Miller) for contempt, as they failed to cooperate with House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) in their attempts to investigate alleged subversives and communists. Pete Seeger testified before the HUAC in 1955.

In one of Pete’s darkest moments, when his personal freedom, his career, and his safety were in jeopardy, a flash of inspiration ignited this song. The song was stirred by a passage from Mikhail Sholokhov’s novel “And Quie Flows the Don”. Around the world the song traveled and in 1962 at a UNICEF concert in Germany, Marlene Dietrich, Academy Award-nominated German-born American actress, first performed the song in French, as “Qui peut dire ou vont les fleurs?” Shortly after she sang it in German. The song’s impact in Germany just after WWII was shattering. It’s universal message, “let there be peace in the world” did not get lost in its translation. To the contrary, the combination of the language, the setting, and the great lyrics has had a profound effect on people all around the world. May it have the same effect today and bring renewed awareness to all that hear it.

Punting the Pundits: Sunday Preview Edition

Punting the Punditsis an Open Thread. It is a selection of editorials and opinions from around the news medium and the internet blogs. The intent is to provide a forum for your reactions and opinions, not just to the opinions presented, but to what ever you find important.

Thanks to ek hornbeck, click on the link and you can access all the past “Punting the Pundits”.

Follow us on Twitter @StarsHollowGzt

The Sunday Talking Heads:

This Week with George Stephanopolis: The guests on today’s “This Week” are:  Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD);  Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC); and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT).

The roundtable guests are: Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol; former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson; editor and publisher of The Nation Katrina vanden Heuvel; and former Bush White House press secretary Dana Perino.,

Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer: Mr. Schieffer’s guests are: Cornell William Brooks, President of the NAACP; Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI); and CBS News correspondent Seth Doane in Nepal.

His panel guests are: Sherrilyn Ifill, director of the NAACP’s Legal Defense and Educational Fund; Ramesh Ponnuru of National Review;, Michele Norris of NPR; author and economist Dr. Julianne Malveaux; and Michael Gerson, The Washington Post.

Meet the Press with Chuck Todd: The guests are: Rep. John Boehner (R-OH); and former Gov. Martin O’Malley (D-MD); and Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, Mayor of Baltimore.

The panel guests are: Tom Brokaw, NBC News; author Wes Moore; April Ryan, American Urban Radio Networks; and Kimberley Strassel, The Wall Street Journal.

State of the Union with Jake Tapper: Mr. Tapper’s guests are: Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD); Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter (D); and Birmingham Mayor William Bell (D); former Baltimore Ravens Dj Bryant; Charles M. Blow, The New York Times; and Tara Wall, journalist and media entrepreneur.

His panel guests are; Errol Lewis, NY1; S.E. Cupp, CNN; and Michael Smerconish, CNN.

Now go out and play in the sun, or just go back to sleep.

Six In The Morning

On Sunday

Nepal quake: Airport customs holding up aid relief – UN



The United Nations has urged Nepal to relax customs controls which it says are holding up deliveries of aid to survivors of last week’s earthquake.

UN humanitarian chief Valerie Amos said Nepal had a duty to provide faster customs clearance for relief supplies.

Many people are yet to receive the aid, which is piling up at Kathmandu airport, a week after the 7.8-magnitude earthquake on 25 April.

More than 7,000 have died. Authorities have ruled out finding more survivors.

Sunday’s Headlines:

Isis on the run? The US portrayal is very far from the truth

What people smugglers tell migrants seeking to cross into Europe

India’s new norm of semi-arranged marriages

Group presses Paraguay to allow abortion for raped girl, 10

Texas Governor Deploys National Guard To Stave Off Obama Takeover

The Breakfast Club (Flowers)

Welcome to The Breakfast Club! We’re a disorganized group of rebel lefties who hang out and chat if and when we’re not too hungover  we’ve been bailed out we’re not too exhausted from last night’s (CENSORED) the caffeine kicks in. Join us every weekday morning at 9am (ET) and weekend morning at 10:30am (ET) to talk about current news and our boring lives and to make fun of LaEscapee! If we are ever running late, it’s PhilJD’s fault.

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Breakfast Tune: Pete Seeger – Where have all the flowers gone?

Today in History

Highlights: Philosopher Niccolo Machiavelli born; The U.S. Supreme Court rules racial covenants in real estate are unenforceable; Joe DiMaggio makes his baseball debut; Singers Pete Seeger and James Brown born. (May 3)

Breakfast News & Blogs Below