Now there’s Trump so I return to Zinn

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Some folks are long overdue for their first reading of A People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn.  In my case, I was overdue for a re-read and it has been very helpful.  With recent political developments as they have been and a tendency to forecast ominously for the future I provide this link to edify your knowledge, starting with Columbus as anti-hero.

FULL PDF: HOWARD ZINN A People’s History of the United States

“Teaching as a Subversive Activity” by Neil Postman (RIP)

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FULL PDF: Teaching as a Subversive Activity by Neil Postman

One of the greatest works of scholarly literature in the 20th century.  Relevant today. Great book.  In English.

Affordable Care Act

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A new “5-year rule” in California allows the government to recover their costs for social services received by you.

Question:

Are the insurance subsidies under the ACA to be considered as a social service received?  Presumably so, but I am not sure.

Under the new rule the government can demand to be paid back from your estate for the time period of 5-years prior to the date of your death.  So you could suffer for a while and die from cancer; all that costs the value of your estate.  In that case do the kids lose their right to inherit the family home?  

What are the implications of this new rule upon individuals and families?

The argument for is that government services need to be at least partially covered by the receiver, and any possible means for recovery is justified.

The counter argument to the rule is that government is colluding with banks and insurance to re-acquire private property, thus possible constitutional questions will arise.

I hope someone can provide more information about this.

MOTION PICTURE SCRIPT EXAMPLES

MOTION PICTURE SCRIPT EXAMPLES

all-is-lost

blood-diamond-d_july_27_2005_draft

brokeback-mountain

castaway

coach-carter

fargo

field-of-dreams

good-fellas

her

it’s-complicated

midnight-in-paris

miller-death-of-a-salesman-study-guide

miller-death-of-a-salesman-study

miller_death-of-a-salesman

napoleon

panic-room-spec

rescue-dawn-notes

jackiebrown

seven-samurai

sideways

spanglish

spotlight

streetcar-named-desire

Pilipino History (US-Philippines War 1898-1910?)

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Pinoy Kollektor

HERE is a link to a fascinating educational web presentation of historical photographs and information about Tobacco in the Philippines.   Good for comparison of Blogspot and WordPress too.

 

The publication of my first book!

I am very happy that my doctoral dissertation has been published and internationally distributed by LPO Lambert (Germany).  My plan now is to construct a few shorter books from the various sections of the dissertation, examining topics such as the learnability of creativity, filmmaking as a systematic process of work, the practice of grounded theory for filmmaking, auto-ethnographic writing as a form of scholarly work, and more.  The dissertation was certainly “macro” or “meta” in its approach to the topic.  Here is the cover of the book:

 

To read read the Dissertation Abstract and the entire Dissertation please my website: www.anthonycollinsfilm.com

 

 

Defiant Defectors from the US Army

I am developing a docudrama about a soldier in the US Army who defected to the enemy side in 1899 during the Philippines-US War on the island of Luzon.Scene of fighting near Manila, Virginian-Pilot, March 17 1899-1.jpg

Throughout US History there are lots of other great examples of defection, some recent, but I’m most interested in Black US soldiers in the Pilipino-American War who defected to the Nacionalista side during the war years at the turn of the 20th century.

The topic is deep and rich.  Knowing more about any defector from any war is of interest to me at this stage.  The historical continuities are fascinating.  There are fantastic and peculiar stories of those who defected to Nacionalista Philippines, North Korea, ex-USSR, PRC, VietCong, and much more.

I think this article useful in a general way. Everything is data!!!

THE HIDDEN HISTORY OF BLACK SOLDIERS’ RESISTANCE

I’d be thrilled to hear from others who may have knowledge or interest in this history.

 

The music of Osvaldo Golijov

Today, I first heard “AYRE,” a very unique song cycle by a contemporary Argentine composer, Osvaldo Golijov (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Osvaldo_Golijov).

Wow,  I am thrilled, absolutely enchanted, by what I hear.  This music is a beautiful and wonderful mix of textures and sensibilities, performed on a wide range of voices and instruments.

Check out the bio, works and other info about Osvaldo Golijov: http://www.osvaldogolijov.com

AYRE

Fillmjolk (Buttermilk): How to make heavenly sour milk

images-1FILMJOLK is a Swedish drink that resembles the best qualities of fresh (long) buttermilk, drinkable plain yogurt, or milk kefir.

What You Need to make Filmjolk

Fresh filmjolk starter (I am trying to use Siggi’s Plain Swedish Style Filmjolk 0% as my starter)

Glass jar (I use a glass half gallon milk bottle)

Fresh milk

Wooden (or plastic) spoon

Rubber-band

Coffee filter

Step 1

Measure a tablespoon of fresh filmjolk nonfat drinkable yogurt as starter (Siggi’s Plain 0%)  for each 1 cup of milk.  Calculate 1 scoop for every 8-10 oz glass for fermentation. I use a half gallon size glass milk jar, mix with funnel about 56 oz milk with 6 – 8 oz starter.

Step 2

Pour filmjolk starter into the glass jar and Pour fresh milk into the jar (one tablespoon for each cup of starter).

Step 3

Put on a lid (if available) and shake the bottle to mix, and/or I use a wooden or plastic spoon/stick to mix the starter evenly through the milk. NOTE: Don’t use metal because it will react with fermented foods. Mix the mixture well.

Step 4

Rubber-band a coffee filter or piece of cheese cloth around the top of your jar to allow air circulation. Select a location to place your filmjolk away from sunlight and in an area that remains at room temperature.

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Step 5

Allow your filmjolk to ferment for at least 12 hours, although I wait for 24 or more hours to achieve a more tangy taste.  Check it to see if the mixture has thickened and gelled after 12 -14 hours. If not to your liking, allow it to ferment for up to another 6 hours.  I let it sit for more time so I can aim for that “tangy” (sour) taste.  Less time less tangy.  Both are good.

Step 6

Put your filmjolk in the refrigerator after it has set. Let it stay in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours before setting aside some of the yogurt for a new batch.

Step 7

Reserve a tablespoon of your filmjolk for each cup of yogurt you would like to make in your next batch.

Make sure to begin fermenting your next batch within a week, or your cultures will weaken.

Eat or drink the rest of the yogurt.

Happy filmjolk!

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Student Loans and the Road to Eternal Poverty

I noticed a SF documentary filmmaker (www.chainedthedocumentary.com) is developing and producing a feature about the “student loan crisis.” I wish him great success.

Posing the question to myself, I ask what is the student loan crisis?  This gets my mind whirring. So the following is a response to the student loan crisis.

Just like Erasmus the Educator, Artist, a Wayfaring Stranger, Teacher and Mystic more than one thousand years ago, today’s pursuit of higher education by students, by way of student loans, can compel an unintended future of near-poverty, potentially jeopardizing a hopeful future of health and happiness.

The student loan and its terms nearly guarantee a student, particularly one not enjoying great financial success after graduation, will possibly experience a lifetime of economic struggles in repayment, deferment, or worse.  I don’t know of data that shows a correlation between high amounts of student loan debt and major financial problems in life but my personal experience says both are symbiotically related.

The amount of needed funds for ever-rising tuition and living costs, and the terms of student loan debt itself, virtually forces a student into a vow of poverty for the future, in exchange for the education and degree earned.  A student faced with unemployment or other unexpected less-than-catastrophic turns of events after graduation will be forced to climb (or fall) upon a slippery slope that ultimately goes downhill–or always uphill to nowhere.  The amount of debt, and a partial or total inability to pay off the debt, can quickly and eternally entrench itself in one’s life for decades, or forever and beyond.

Initially, there is great appeal to take the yellow-brick road of illusion, availing of student loans as a saving grace and a vehicle for progress, worthwhile to some, perceived to be imperative by many.  To accept the alternative of not taking a loan will mean that no loan debts are incurred, but with the likely caveat that higher education may have remained fragmented or incomplete.  Student loans might be seen as unnecessary to some, or as a risk too great to bear by others, but the cost is determined by many others to be unavoidable. The loan can open a harsh door into student indebtedness in the future.  Insidiously, student loan debt introduces itself like a siren calls invitingly from the horizon.

I am pleased to know this SF documentary filmmaker is busy at work examining the student loan crisis but whenever I see or read something addressing the topic of student loan indebtedness, I am compelled to ask what exactly is the “crisis” that is oftentimes mentioned?  What is this crisis, in specific terms?  I am trying to see the problem of student debt poverty from macro and micro POVs.

Is it the inconvenience and possible tragic consequences for many people who are facing repayment of a huge old debt when the calculated repayment amount is unaffordable?

Is the crisis about skyrocketing tuition costs that are only paralleled by a student borrowing each year?

Is it the fact that new policy/law for borrowing is multi-generational in its implications and that dependents of debtors in good standing can be denied higher education, based upon the parent’s record?

Take your pick.  Which crisis are we talking about?  The obvious answer is that the crisis reflects all of these questions.

As for the third possible question about multigenerational indebtedness and higher education denied, I have recently learned that the student loan debt held by a parent will directly affect the amount of debt a child of that parent is entitled to borrow.  I thought multi-generational indebtedness was not allowed in the USA?  Didn’t that go away with indentured servitude and slavery?  New policy links a new student’s ability to secure loans with the amount of parental student loan debt outstanding, disallowing some students to borrow any amount based upon factors beyond the student’s control.  Under this new policy, any problem or outstanding debt amount that may exist in the parent’s repayment record can directly disallow a child from any federal loans, based upon the parent’s prior student loans, including those in good standing and not in default.  To my mind, that injustice toward the child of a debtor is a crisis.

I hope the issue of student indebtedness and access to affordable higher education are not going to disappear with Bernie Sanders. The “crisis” is certainly larger than the high price of higher learning these days, or the inconvenience of debt repayment.   The crisis is the tip of a big iceberg of law and policy that reify rigidified notions of class.  The crisis is institutional, systemic and political in scope and nature.  Once one becomes stuck in a debtor-prison-like situation of student indebtedness, an entire family can be held hostage and denied the achievement of higher education.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Dr. E Anthony Collins has a vast and unfortunate knowledge of the legal, practical, and historical aspects of federal and state (California) student loan system in higher education since 1979. He also has a contemporary POV, as a recently-enrolled student plus 15 years of teaching and leadership experience at several public and private institutions in the USA and abroad.

Concerto for Oboe & Orchestra by John Corigliano

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I remember being deeply thrilled with wonderment when I first heard John Corigliano’s Concerto for Oboe and Orchestra.

It seemed so new and insane, yet ancient to my ears in a wonderful sort of way.

Movement #1

Movement #3

It is a wild ride, so nice.

John Corigliano: www.johncorigliano.com

 

 

RIP Richie Havens, thank you!

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A lot of bad news flowing around these days and the news about Richie Havens’ death can be added to the unfortunate list.

ABOUT RICHIE HAVENS

As a guitarist I have been greatly influenced by Havens’ guitar playing style and the wonderful sound of his music.  His voice resonates in a profound way and his energy is captivating.  I was fortunate to see him in concert many times over the years, and I am grateful for those memories.

His albums are special, particularly his earliest ones like “Mixed Bag” and others in the late 60s and early 70s.

I always imagined that I could produce a TV concert that would team Richie Havens with Joni Mitchell but I guess that will have to wait.  I encourage everyone to  listen to his popular hits such as “Sandy” “I Can’t Make It Anymore” “High Flyin’ Bird” or “Here Comes the Sun” and soooooo many others.

“Sandy” is probably my all-time favorite of his tunes, I have a great love song, although it probably wasn’t one of his biggest hits.

“Follow” is another great one by Richie.

Solitary Man

Recently heard this song in a shopping mall as if wafted meaningfully through meaningless commercial corridors.  Since then I haven’t gotten it out of my head, recalling its various versions by Neil Diamond, Johnny Cash and others.  Until I find x (a woman, love, etc) then I’ll just stay as I am, a Solitary Man…I wonder if I am on the verge of a Neil Diamond appreciation phase?

Here is a Johnny Cash rendition of this great song.  Enjoy!

 

The repression of dissent: The Occupy movement was (temporarily?) quashed by a coordinated BLOB of Police, FBI, and Banks

Thanks to my friend, Myles Cummings, now in the UK, who steered me to an interesting article with very ominous overtones about the FBI coordination with banks for the crackdown upon the Occupy Movement activities.

SEE: http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/dec/29/fbi-coordinated-crackdown-occupy

I have written in earlier blog entries on this site about my philosophical support for the Occupy movement and its objectives, and about my distrust/disdain concerning the behavior of banks in the USA, but this article brings the conflict I feel to an entirely new level, and shows that we in the USA have reached an all time low point.

But wait, there’s more!

In doing further inquiry about the allegations and analysis set forth in the article, I found a different article on this topic by The Partnership for Civil Justice Fund

SEE: http://www.justiceonline.org/commentary/fbi-files-ows.html

The Partnership article reinforces the Guardian article by describing a terrifying and coordinated network of para-police bodies intending to suppress Occupy dissent.  It describes how the Department of Homeland Security, FBI, police, regional fusion center (a cocktail of police-governmental forces), and private-sector activity were completely merged into one another for the purpose of suppressing and eliminating dissent.

NOTE: Please re-read that sentence and ponder its significance.

An amorphous blob of police and investigative powers became a monstrous whole, one entity, one monstrous force bearing a single name, the Domestic Security Alliance Council–and this merged entity had one centrally planned, locally executed mission.  Further, the Partnership article cites documents that show the cops and DHS working for and with BANKS to target, arrest, and politically disable peaceful American citizens.

For some horrible reason this coalition of police powers, investigative powers, and BANKS does not surprise me but it surely does reinforce my concerns that we have entered a new era of fascist repression and guarantees that we will face a lot of sadness in the future.

Banks are not our friend.  I see banks springing up on every corner of Everywhere, USA.  I am again reminded of many impoverished countries where I have lived or visited, with banks on every one of their street corners too.  The more banks, the greater the poverty?  It seems illogical but somehow it is becoming true.  Everyone knew that already but it’s worth repeating.   But when Banks have the forces of a police state working for them, under their direction in suppressing dissent, then WOW do we have a problem!  That’s not a question, it’s a statement.

Aside from that, Happy New Year!

Anthony Collins, Jr., PVHS Football 2012, and the best highlight reel EVER!

Here is the highlight reel of my son’s 2012 season as a player on the PVHS Football Team.  I think it is the best highlight reel I have ever seen–sure, I’m biased but take a look for yourself.  Somehow, a little magic circle appears to indicate where Anthony is on the field–wearing #2

In memory of my friend, Bob Morgan

images-1I had a dream last night that was full of music, specifically, Saturday Night Waltz–from Aaron Copeland’s RODEO.   To my ears, this is a melodic dance from a timeless heavenly valley.   I have loved that piece since I was a 3-year old boy.  I don[‘t recall the story of the dream but I was clear about the music in my head.

The melody shaped my morning and was in my heart and ears as I started my day–then a miraculous and surprising thing happened that elevated me  from the mundane to the sublime.  I got in my car and started down the road, and as I drove I turned on KUSC and whamm0—-guess what was just starting?  SURPRISE–It was Leonard Bernstein, NY Phil, and Copeland’s RODEO!  It was a cosmic convergence of music, dream, and my emotional state of mind.  It was a rainy morning with grey skies, but hearing that piece after just dreaming about it was invigorating.  I was prepared for flight to celestial heights as the entire RODEO was heard but I never imagined that it would be so conveniently available.

When the Saturday Night Waltz started, I surprised myself and found a sudden burst of anxious happiness and whimpering sadness at the same time.  The melody was soaring and I could imagine Bernstein pulling every fibre of human expression from his musicians.

Then, while the music played, I started missing my good friend, RL Bob Morgan.   He died last July and I have missed him ever since, but this time the loss hit me all of a sudden and really packed a punch.

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I missed him because of his caring heart for others, his vast knowledge about most everything, his wit, his true ability to have conversation upon conversation over the years that resonated with meaning, and his sensibilities in music along with everything else.  I recall so many times we would talk–in my van while cruising down Baja Hwy 1, in a hot springs bath in Saline Valley, in so many other situations since we met in 1957.  He and I were about 3-4 years old when we discovered Copeland’s RODEO in his collection of 78s, along with Peter and the Wolf, Mozart Symph #40, Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite, Burl Ives folk singing, and so many others.  Bob knew a lot.  He would think and feel something deeply whenever he did what he did.

For me, Copeland’s Saturday Night Waltz has held a mysterious and lasting grip on my psyche and in that cold rainy morning in the car and with the radio blasting it was able to open a flood gate of memories and emotions for me.  It made me cry inside as a child, and it made me sob yesterday morning out loud without concern of who would notice me.  I kept my ears open as I wept.  In my heart and in my throat I cried out loud I cried like a demolished spirit.  I was happy and sad at the same time.  I missed Bob at that moment and for some reason I had a conflicting and mixed sense of hopelessless, aesthetic purity, and a true sense of loss about life in general.  In hindsight, it’s all a good thing and I am glad that I am able to feel something and remember something that elevates me.

What a great piece of music it is, and thank you Aaron Copeland for giving that music to us.

Skeeters or Snakes?: You have to pick your poison

http://news.yahoo.com/venomous-snakes-harbor-deadly-brain-swelling-virus-210958870.html

Fascinating story, possible horrible.  Is the potential for mosquito mayhem a further ramification of global warming?  As I understand the problem, an increase in mosquitos is the result of the winter cold snap not being sufficient to wipe our last year’s crop of the critters, so they keep getting bigger and more problematic for us.

This article is useful–it confirms my anxiety about being confronted by poisonous snakes while walking in the jungle.  Now I can rest assured that my anxiety and trepidation of encountering that couple of cobras around the rushing creek, or that rattler in the Mohave, or others—these were based upon logic and science, not my own fear and insecurity!  It was ancient voices speaking intuitively with me, hooray!

The demonization of mosquitos is useful too–confirming and consistent with my theory that it’s the little critters that will actually bring degrees of ruination to jungle visitors, not the big stuff.  It’ll be the little devil that you never knew was there that brings you down, not the giant wild boar or 11 foot mamba or shimmering 800 pound Siberian tiger.

I am reminded to write about my days and nights after visitation from a blood sucking cockroach in Mindanao.

Anyway, vitamin B-11 (or is B-1?) as a form of repellant against mosquitos is effective as I recall after my own tests in Missouri and Iowa during the Summer 1979.  It’s good, only if you can tolerate the odor that it generates from your pores.  The main point is to obstruct, deter, and repel mosquitos from landing upon one’s bloody yummy-ness because there is no known antidote to malaria, dengue, and whatever else.  Snakes hate mosquitos too, so they ar ranked #1 as unsympathetic antagonists.

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