Friday, January 11, 2013

Hear Ancient Assyrian Music Come Alive!

Based on the discoveries at Ugarit, archeologists have deciphered ancient musical notations and now can play authentic ancient Hurrian, Ugaritic and Assyrian music. (Hurrian was a non-Semitic language spoken by a minority of foreigners who had settled among the Canaanite speaking Ugaritic people.) Sounds From Silence: Recent Discoveries in Ancient Near Eastern Music. This album comes with one vinyl and a 23 page booklet. It is printed out of Berkeley. The sections are as follows: "History of the Research", "The Theory Texts", "The Song Text", "Musical Instruments in the Ancient Near East", "Modern Replicas of Ancient Lyres", "Selected Bibliography". It contains a plethora of information...e.g. opening paragraph:-
"During the last sixteen years documents ahve come to light that have provided us with the most specific information yet available about the music of the ancient Near East. These documents include information ont he structure of the scale and the tuning sytem as far back as 1800 B.C., and also an actual song dating from around 1400 B.C. Both the tuning documents and the song predate comparable documents by at least a thousand years, thus pushing back the limit of our specific knowledge of music from a little over 2000 years ago to a little over 3000 years ago.
The documents are ancient clay tablets inscribed in antiquity with cuneiform writing..."
It's got great illustrations and the album has Side 1; 22.13 of demonstrations of Old Babylonian Tuning Procedure's for Lyre (ca. 1800 B.C.) and, on Side 2; 20.14 of A Hurrian Cult Song from Ancient Ugarit (ca. 1400 B.C.). The musical instruments were built by Robert Brown himself.
This is a wonderful offering from Berkeley.
A CD and large, 23-page illustrated booklet titled: "Sounds of Silence: Recent Discoveries in Ancient Near Eastern Music." Anne D. Kilmer, Richard L. Crocker and Robert R. Brown, (copyright 1976), is available from, or by emailing


Fourteen recorded lyre pieces. All titles in this collection are each in one of the seven modal tunings discussed in "Sounds from Silence," played using samples from Professor Kilmer's replica of the Silver Lyre in the British Museum. Both Hurrian Hymn versions are based on Kilmer's original arrangement, but have rhythms and simple harmonies added. "Hurrian Moonrise" uses the ascending scale tuning for the lyre, as in her published arrangement. "Hurrian Moonset" uses a descending scale, with a different meter for variety. Other pieces are based in part on themes known to be relatively old, from around the Mediterranean area and Middle East. Fourteen pieces in all, including a lullaby, a victory song, dance of the beer goddess, Ninkasi; a royal procession, a wedding song, and a popular Assyrian hymn, "Hal Libba Marya."

King David's Lyre; Echoes of Ancient Israel Michael Levy has reconstructed ancient Hebrew music on his lyre. Michael Levy is truly an original -- although the music he plays is largley forgotten. He takes the oldest music in the world and plays them on the lyre -- the way it is meant to be played -- resuscitating the music back to life. There is something ancient, primal, & primordial to the music he creates. Michael is real passionate musician, and his music is one of my greatest personal discoveries I found last year. Other albums include "The Ancient Egyptian Harp" and "Ancient Landscapes."

Daughters of the American Revolution cannot use "In Jesus Name"
Patriotic Group Told to Stop Praying in Jesus' Name

By Todd Starnes The Daughters of the American Revolution, one of the nation's oldest patriotic organizations, has erased any mention of Jesus Christ in their official book, removed prayers and poems that reference Christian imagery, and directed members to refrain from praying in the name of Christ, an outraged group of members alleged. The dispute has been brewing for more than a year when DAR members learned that the newly revised Ritual and Missal books – the primary guide for chaplains – were altered. They noticed that the name of Jesus Christ had been omitted. The DAR president general
did not return calls seeking comment for this story. The members said DAR leadership made the changes to be politically correct and to accommodate new members of other religious beliefs. A state chaplain in the organization notified members of their concerns in a newsletter. "The newly updated Missal and Ritual was written to reflect the desire to be considerate of other belief systems," the statement read. "The Chaplain General uses scripture from both the Old and New Testaments and prays in the name of God without reference Christ. Chapter and district chaplains need to follow the example set by the National Society." The statement also reminded members to "appreciate the differences in members' religious beliefs and to adapt our rituals and prayers to respect these differences." That directive has infuriated rank and file members of the DAR – an organization that is deeply rooted in the Christian faith. Several members of the DAR spoke with Fox News about their concerns – on the condition they remain anonymous. "They are changing the legacy and intent of the Founding Ladies and rewriting the history of the Daughters of the American Revolution," one member told Fox News. "How dare they? They're supposed to be doing it out of inclusion. To me, it's exclusion. If they are saying it's because of religious tolerance – my question is – if someone is so incensed over the name of Jesus and words like 'white crosses' that reference soldiers who died for America – is it not they who are intolerant?" The DAR has also reportedly eliminated an oath to the Constitution, a promise to respect the American flag, as well as patriotic hymns that reference God – including "America the Beautiful." Members were told those items were inadvertently left out of the revision and will be included in future publications. "A group of us went through the Ritual and Missal and compared the old version and the new version," another member told Fox News. "Every single prayer closing in the name of Jesus Christ no longer included the name of Jesus Christ." "For 122 years Christianity was included in the Daughters of the American Revolution," said one member. "Without the name of Jesus Christ it is surely not Christianity. This has never been an issue until December of 2011." The DAR was founded in 1890 as a non-profit, non-political volunteer women's service organization. Membership is open to any woman who can prove they are a lineal descendant of a patriot from the American Revolution. The organization has 170,000 members in 3,000 members. The members said they tried to bring their concerns to the organization's leadership but were rebuffed. "The response from the leadership was one of being inclusive and being sensitive to non-Christians and other beliefs," a member said. "The minority rules instead of the majority." One chaplain said it broke her heart to take Jesus out of the prayers and there are reports that some members have resigned.

The members said they were particularly disturbed that the changes were made without the vote or the approval of the 170,000 membership. And many are perplexed over who might be so offended by the mere mention of the name of Christ. "Who is it that is so incensed over the name of Jesus and any Christian symbol or reference – that they feel like they have to eliminate it from the Daughters of the American Revolution," one member asked. They said Christianity had never been forced on any members but to remove it from the historic organization's documents is a "deception and twisting of history." "They are negating our history, changing our history," one lady told Fox News. "This country was blessed by God Himself. Most of our Founding Fathers had Bibles in their hands and Jesus in their hearts and therefore America became what America is today. And through the last decade, it's been a constant chiseling away of our Christian foundation – our Judeo-Christian foundation."

A RINO explains the Obama Re-election, from an article by a RINO named Scott Pinsker entitled "A marketer's proposal: The death of conservatism as our default argument"
Obama's Reelection Strategy Obama's reelection strategy was not to capture independents, or rally the nation behind a compelling second-term agenda. His strategy was to activate his base; widen the gender-gap; and portray Romney as a conservative extremist. Obama didn't campaign on ideas; he campaigned on personal associations (read: empathy) – that he was one of us – and Mitt Romney was a dangerous outsider. For all the left's handwringing about conservative wedge-issues (Willie Horton! The Pledge of Allegiance! Gay marriage!), Romney's campaign avoided ALL wedge-issues, because wedge-issues contradicted his marketing objective of seeming "safe" to independents. (Note how quickly he backtracked from Benghazi in the final debate.) Obama didn't share this concern. His campaign was a shameless, unapologetic barrage of wedge-issues. Just to expand the gender-gap: Republicans are waging a "War on Women!" They'll take away your birth control pills! They're attacking Sandra Fluke! They'll kill Planned Parenthood! Out-of-touch Romney needs "binders of women!" Republicans support "legitimate" rape! They'll ban abortion! Obama's strategy seemed odd to many Republicans. Conservative pundits condemned the President for "distracting" voters from the economy, lampooned him for making ideologically-absurd statements, and predicted that these wedge-issues were so brazenly outlandish, they couldn't possibly gain traction.


Read more:

OK-my take. Romney and the RINOs said-don't talk about social issues-lets not take a divisive stand on controversial issues-lets just talk about the economy. But Obama did-so why shouldn't we. And, it was a winning strategy for him. The gist of RINO Pinsker's article is, don't talk about social issues-the key is (to the RINO) be empathetic




Al Gore refuses to sell his left-wing station to Glenn Beck but sells it to Islamic Terrorists

How much does presidential election loser Al Gore hate conservatives? Enough that he wouldn't sell his little-watched Current TV to conservative Glenn Beck, but he would sell it to anti-American terror mouthpiece Al Jazeera for half a billion dollars. According to The Wall Street Journal, "Glenn Beck's The Blaze approached Current about buying the channel last year, but was told that 'the legacy of who the network goes to is important to us and we are sensitive to networks not aligned with our point of view,' according to a person familiar with the negotiations." So, Gore, who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007 after producing the climate change documentary "An Inconvenient Truth," thinks conservatives are bad but Al Jazeera is his kind of folks. Al Jazeera, known as the network of the Arab street, is also known for taking anti-American, anti-Israel and pro-terror positions. As the Wall Street Journal pointed out, it "became famous in the U.S. about a decade ago when its Arabic-language outlet aired videos of Usama bin Laden in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks." The network is based in Qatar, an oil producing country, and is state-funded. Read more:

Bill O'Reilly also noted that 1. Despite all of Gore's opposition to "oil," he sold his station to the oil wealthy nation of Qatar. Bill's clip also shows a Al Jazeera documentary praising Osama Bin Ladin. And then there is this: And according to the "New York Times" today, they wanted to close the deal last week to avoid the higher capital gains tax this year. It sounds like good business sense, right? But here's what's confusing. Just two months ago old Al gave an interview to the Reuters News Service and said this. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) GORE: The single most popular proposal we had was to reduce taxes on working people and lift the higher rate. Let's give an incentive to work and let's ask the most fortunate in our society, including me and you. REUTERS HOST: Yes. GORE: To do our fair share. O'REILLY: To do our fair share. Isn't that fascinating? So, what is our fair share? Oh, I guess that means selling assets at the lower capital gains rate.

Read more:

We're now one step closer to America's coming civil war

The New Year has started with a monstrosity of a budget deal, one that proves that neither political party, Democrats or Republicans, is really serious about controlling the growth of big government. But soap opera dramatics about fiscal "cliffs" and sequestration shouldn't deflect from where President Obama is really taking this country. Consider this story from the Wall Street Journal a few days before Christmas: "Thousands of people in several Argentine cities ransacked supermarkets for a second day in the latest challenge to President Chistina Kirchner, who is struggling to revive a weak economy...In the central city Rosario, two people were killed during the incidents and 137 people arrested. The violence puts Mrs. Kirchner in a difficult position as the poor are [her] core constituents...Her government spends billions of dollars a year to help low income families, including free health care...[Yet] Argentine activists who claim to represent the poor traditionally block access to supermarkets in the month of December to demand free food and other items...The latest events were some of the worst acts of looting and vandalism in years.... Local media showed dozens of men, women, and children hauling away televisions, refrigerators, and food." Some have said my warnings about a coming civil war between makers and takers are exaggerated. It's true that Argentina's politicians have been waging class warfare since Juan and Eva Peron–and they aren't fazed when it turns bloody. Obama and the Democrats are relative newcomers to the game. But Argentina reveals who really suffers when those who create a nation's wealth get mugged by those who spend it–as just happened this week in Washington. It's the poor and the middle class, the very ones big government says it's trying to protect. And sadly that's where Mitt Romney had it wrong. That 47 percent of Americans who get unemployment benefits, Social Security disability checks, Medicare and Medicaid, and government student loans, aren't the real takers. Like the rioters in Rosario, they're just pawns in a perennial battle between those who see wealth and prosperity as something created by hard work, ingenuity, and innovation in a free market system–or something to be doled out by government. Experience teaches that those who believe in free markets are right. The November election and the budget deal, however, show that the other side is winning, and winning big. Since 1970, America's public sector has exploded as a percentage of GDP, rising to almost 25% last year. While the national unemployment rate hovers at the 8% mark, government worker unemployment rate is a cozy 3.8%. Sixteen percent of America's workforce now work for government. By the time the Obama administration ends, we won't be that far away from Argentina's 21 percent. Yet as an economic and social enterprise, government creates nothing. Far from adding to people's standard of living, government is the number one cause of poverty in this country. It forces those who depend on its largesse to live hand to mouth, with no time or money to plan for the future. They become unable to fend for themselves---and increasingly resentful of those who can. When the economy tanks and the government checks have to shrink, their only alternative is to take to the streets. That's what happening in Argentina, and in Greece; and that's where the growth of government is taking us here, as this current budget deal increases handouts–and more and more Americans are finding that an unemployment or Social Security disability check is their only life line. Washington's Republicans and Democrats alike have become the toll collectors on the road to serfdom–and the road to Rosario. How far down that road depends on how our private sector rallies in 2013 after two numbing defeats, first on November 7 and then on Capitol Hill this week. It needs to explain to that 47 percent that when big government wins, we all lose–and that this nation won't survive if it does. Read more:

Something to think about…

Obama and Military Chaplains

Religious liberty advocates are concerned after President Obama said a conscience clause that would allow military chaplains to opt-out of performing gay marriages is "unnecessary and ill-advised." "Every member of our armed forces should be able to serve without surrendering their beliefs," said Ron Crews, executive director of the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty. The clause is in the National Defense Authorization Act signed by President Obama on Thursday – but he issued a "signing statement" (a de facto line item veto) noting his objections to Section 533 – the clause protecting chaplains. The section reads, "No member of the Armed Forces may — require a chaplain to perform any rite, ritual, or ceremony that is contrary to the conscience, moral principles, or religious beliefs of the chaplain; or discriminate or take any adverse personnel action against a chaplain. The provision was introduced by former Rep. Todd Akin, in response to President Obama's appeal of the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.

"Section 533 is an unnecessary and ill-advised provision, as the military already appropriately protects the freedom of conscience of chaplains and services members," Obama wrote. "My administration remains fully committed to continuing the successful implementation of the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell, and to protecting the rights of gay and lesbian service members; Section 533 will not alter that." The president's statement alarmed religious liberty advocates like Crews. "Chaplains should be able to stand by their faith traditions and honor their commitment to God's Word," he said. "That's a freedom that Congress sought to protect, and the president is not at liberty to disregard the law." Crews said several chaplains have already been faced with requests from same-sex couples wanting to have ceremonies in military chapels. "The purpose of these provisions is simply to protect the religious liberties of military chaplains who hold to Biblical views concerning sexuality," Crews said.

The American Jesus

Sometimes Americans think of Jesus as if he were an American. But he wasn't. Jesus was an Aramaic speaking Jew!

American Jesus: How the Son of God Became a National Icon by Stephen Prothero (From Book Review:) Jesus the Black Messiah; Jesus the Jew; Jesus the Hindu sage; Jesus the Haight-Asbury hippie: these Jesuses join the traditional figure of Jesus Christ in American Jesus, which was acclaimed upon publication in hardcover as an altogether fresh exploration of American history--and as the liveliest book about Jesus to appear in English in years. Our nation's changing images of Jesus, Stephen Prothero contends, are a kind of looking class into the national character. Even as most Christian believers cleave to a traditional faith, other people give Jesus a leading role as folk hero, pitchman, and countercultural icon. And so it has been since the nation's founding--from Thomas Jefferson, who took scissors to his New Testament to sort out true from false Jesus material; to the Jews, Buddhists and Muslims who fit Jesus into their own traditions; to the people who adapt Jesus for stage and screen and the Holy Land theme park. American Jesus is "a lively, illuminating and accessible survey that takes us into unexpected corners of our shared religious heritage" Other people who dwell on the issue of the "American Jesus" are the young men who made the movie "Beware of Christians."

I discussed this issue on the radio program It is important to remember however, that Jesus is superior to his own Jewish culture and transcended it.

Brett Hume on Hagel nomination

Supporters of former Senator hagel are fond of citing what they say was his courage and bucking his party and its president on the Iraq War. Indeed his agreement with President Obama on issue when both -- senators is said to have formed the bond between them. But there is another way to look at the -- record on Iraq when the authorization to go to war there was before the senate. Hagel certainly voiced misgivings lamenting what he said was a lack of knowledge of the country and -- official insufficient awareness of the risks and possible difficulties. But when the roll was called hazel voted high when things got tough later he became a major critic. And as has been amply noted when President Bush ordered a troop surge to try to redeem the situation. Hagel called -- the biggest foreign policy blunder since Vietnam. Even had it failed to troop surge would not have been that Andy did not fail this is a record to be proud of? After Vietnam this country was grip with the reluctance to use military force and a sense that US military power was a big part of what was wrong with the world. It was known as Vietnam syndrome the first President Bush thought he banish it with the success of the first gulf war. But with President Obama reelected the US out of Iraq soon to be out of Afghanistan and chuck -- chosen for defense. That's syndrome seems to be back again.


Two reports on Benghazi have been released by the government. One by the White House and the other by the Senate. Neither deal with the two principle questions regarding Benghazi.

  1. Was Obama watching the live-feed of the attack (and he must have been)? And, did he refuse to send backup to the embassy staff, and if he did (and it is apparent that he did) what was his reason for allowing Americans to die.
  2. The Obama administration blamed Coptic Christians for the attack because a Coptic Christian made an anti-Mohammed movie. Why did the Obama administration say there was a demonstration, when the report confirms there was not, and why was the blame put on Coptic Christians who had nothing at all to do with the attack?

The reports do not address these questions, which are the most important questions regarding the Benghazi attack.

Obama nominees

People in Obama's staff:

Clapper, his advisor on Islamic culture, says that the Moslem Brotherhood terrorist organization is "largely secular."

Hagel, his nominee for department of defense, is an anti-Semite who plans to gut the military.

Brennan, his CIA head nominee says that Islam has formed his "world view."




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