National Security Facts, Border Wall National Emergency vs Democratic Party and Mainstream Media Censorship

National Security:

UPDATE:

President Trump’s response to the Senate national emergency vote

Today, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) signed a resolution to disapprove of President Donald J. Trump’s national emergency for the crisis on our southern border.

The President had a one-word response for the Democrat-led bill: “VETO!”

The stakes couldn’t be clearer, as Vice President Mike Pence laid out in an interview with Fox News. “A vote against the President’s national emergency declaration is a vote to deny the humanitarian and security crisis that’s happening at our southern border.”

This morning, three state Attorneys General explained the Constitutional authority President Trump used in declaring the national emergency. “Unlike President Barack Obama, who unlawfully used executive power to create new laws or rewrite laws Congress enacted, President Trump is lawfully using executive power to address a crisis worsened by CONGRESSIONAL INACTION,” Ken Paxton (R-TX), Curtis Hill (R-IN), and Jeff Landry (R-LA) write.

Border Wall National Emergency vs Democratic Party and Mainstream Media

Top 5 Border Falsehoods Pushed by Congressional Democrats and the Media

Illegal immigration is not compassionate. It’s inhumane, unjust, and cruel. ~President Donald J. Trump

Left-wing Policies: ” [A] fervid but false solicitude [“compassion”] for the unfortunate over whom they thus gain mastery, and then enslave them. ~David O. McKay

Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen spoke before Congress yesterday about the security and humanitarian crisis on our southern border. Acknowledging that such a crisis exists would make Democrats accountable for working with President Trump to solve it. Their leaders have already gone on the record to say they will not.

Instead, they hope to keep a lid on the ugly, painful truths behind America’s broken immigration system. It is important to set the record straight.

MYTH #1: There is no crisis at the border.

FACT: We continue to face a surge in illegal immigration that has brought the border crisis to a breaking point.

  • There has been a massive surge in illegal migrants arriving at our border, with more than 76,000 apprehended or deemed inadmissible at a port of entry last month—the most of any February during the past 12 years.
  • This fiscal year, U.S. Border Patrol has seen a 97 percent increase in apprehensions compared to the same time period last year.
  • Even before this recent surge, former President Obama called the situation at our southern border “a humanitarian crisis” as early as 2014.

MYTH #2: The problem at the border used to be much worse.

FACT: Today, we face an unprecedented number of illegal immigrants that loopholes prevent from being returned quickly to their home countries.

  • The makeup of illegal immigration has completely changed from previous years. Now, record numbers of family units and minors are arriving at our border, and legal loopholes force them to be released into the interior of the country. Human smugglers know this, and these criminal enterprises routinely exploit these loopholes to smuggle children across the border as leverage.
  • By contrast, in FY 2000, Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) apprehensions were primarily single adults and, as such, 95 percent of those apprehended were repatriated within hours.
  • Apprehensions of family unit aliens and Unaccompanied Alien Children (UAC) have surged by 338 percent and 54 percent respectively this year.

MYTH #3: A wall wouldn’t help because drugs are coming through ports of entry.

FACT: Not only do we not know the amount of drugs smuggled between ports of entry, but building the wall will help free up more resources to seize the drugs coming in.

  • Obviously, there are more drug seizures at ports of entry that are manned by security than remote areas of the border with limited law enforcement presence. That doesn’t mean drugs aren’t coming in between ports of entry.
  • A physical barrier allows law enforcement personnel on the ground to carry out their missions more safely and effectively, preventing more deadly drugs and criminals from crossing our border in undermanned areas.

MYTH #4: Law enforcement such as ICE and U.S. Border Patrol are the villains in this story.

FACT: The real villains are the vile cartels and smugglers who exploit loopholes in our immigration laws for their own horrific gain. Law enforcement is the front line against them.

  • The brave men and women who enforce our immigration laws and secure our border are working tirelessly to keep our communities safe.
  • The cartels have devastated American communities with deadly drug supplies.
  • The smugglers who profit from our weak borders and immigration laws have subjected migrants to horrific violence and abuse. Our border officers are the ones fighting to stop them.
  • Secretary Nielsen testified on March 6 that law enforcement must give pregnancy tests to all migrant girls 10 years or older as a result of regular sexual assault from smugglers and others on their journey.
  • One-third of the women making the trek to our border become victims of rape or other forms of sexual abuse.

MYTH #5: President Trump’s executive action on the border is overreaching, similar or worse to President Obama’s.

FACT: President Trump’s exercise of executive power is categorically different from the kind President Obama used to circumvent existing immigration law. 

  • President Trump acted under the clear authority provided under the National Emergencies Act to address the crisis at the border.
  • This is the literal and exact opposite of President’s Obama’s orders invalidating Congressional statute. President Obama violated Congressionally enacted law by effectively awarding lawful presence to those living in the country illegally and granting them affirmative immigration benefits—contravening a variety of clear-cut provisions in the Immigration and Nationality Act (such as 8 U.S.C. §1101, 1158, 1226, 1229b, 1231, 1325, and 1326).
  • Beyond violating the INA, the whole thrust of President Obama’s action was to facilitate activity Congress had expressly outlawed (e.g., illegal entry, illegal work, etc.).
  • By contrast, President Trump is fulfilling his core Article II duties to enforce our duly passed immigration laws and prevent foreign nationals from violating those laws en masse. Whereas President Obama could not find a single statute authorizing his Administration to issue DACA/DAPA (because none existed), President Trump’s emergency declaration is an explicit and straightforward invocation of authority delegated to the President by Congress.
  • Far from unprecedented, 60 national emergencies have been declared since Congress passed the National Emergencies Act in 1976, and 32 are still in effect today. The President’s Emergency declaration enforces existing law and carries out his sworn duty to uphold U.S. sovereignty and national security.

 

https://www.whitehouse.gov/articles/top-5-border-falsehoods-pushed-congressional-democrats-media/

 

Advertisements

U.S. Constitution, James Madison, and Founding Fathers

Dinner Topics for Monday

James Madison

from Wikipedia

madisontyrannydefineJames Madison, Jr. (March 16, 1751 (O.S. March 5)  – June 28, 1836) was an American statesman and political theorist, the fourth President of the United States (1809–1817). He is hailed as the “Father of the Constitution” for being instrumental in the drafting of the United States Constitution and as the key champion and author of the United States Bill of Rights.[1] He served as a politician much of his adult life.

After the constitution had been drafted, Madison became one of the leaders in the movement to ratify it. His collaboration with Alexander Hamilton and John Jay produced the Federalist Papers (1788). Circulated only in New York at the time, they would later be considered among the most important polemics in support of the Constitution. He was also a delegate to the Virginia constitutional ratifying convention, and was instrumental to the successful ratification effort in Virginia. Like most of his contemporaries, Madison changed his political views during his life. During the drafting and ratification of the constitution, he favored a strong national government, though later he grew to favor stronger state governments, before settling between the two extremes late in his life.

In 1789, Madison became a leader in the new House of Representatives, drafting many basic laws. He is notable for drafting the first ten amendments to the Constitution, and thus is known as the “Father of the Bill of Rights“.[4] Madison worked closely with President George Washington to organize the new federal government. Breaking with Hamilton and what became the Federalist Party in 1791, Madison and Thomas Jefferson organized what they called the Republican Party (later called by historians the Democratic-Republican Party)

As Jefferson’s Secretary of State (1801–1809), Madison supervised the Louisiana Purchase, which doubled the nation’s size. After his election to the presidency, he presided over renewed prosperity for several years. As president (1809–17), after the failure of diplomatic protests and a trade embargo against Great Britain, he led the nation into the War of 1812. He was responding to British encroachments on American honor and rights; in addition, he wanted to end the influence of the British among their Indian allies, whose resistance blocked United States settlement in the Midwest around the Great Lakes. Madison found the war to be an administrative nightmare, as the United States had neither a strong army nor financial system; as a result, he afterward supported a stronger national government and a strong military, as well as the national bank, which he had long opposed.

Father of the Constitution

constitution2The Articles of Confederation established the United States as a confederation of sovereign states with a weak central government. This arrangement did not work particularly well, and after the war was over, it was even less successful. Congress had no power to tax, and as a result was not paying the debts left over from the Revolution. Madison and other nationalists, such as Washington and Alexander Hamilton, were very concerned about this. They feared a break-up of the union and national bankruptcy.[20] The historian Gordon S. Wood has noted that many leaders such as Madison and Washington, feared more that the revolution had not fixed the social problems that had triggered it, and the excesses ascribed to the King were being seen in the state legislatures. Shays’ Rebellion is often cited as the event that forced the issue; Wood argues that many at the time saw it as only the most extreme example of democratic excess. They believed the constitution would need to do more than fix the Articles of Confederation. Like the revolution, it would need to rewrite the social compact and redefine the relationship among the states, the national government, and the people.[19]

As Madison wrote, “a crisis had arrived which was to decide whether the American experiment was to be a blessing to the world, or to blast for ever the hopes which the republican cause had inspired.”[21] Partly at Madison’s instigation, a national convention was called in 1787. Madison was crucial in persuading George Washington to attend the convention, since he knew how important the popular general would be to the adoption of a constitution. As one of the first delegates to arrive, while waiting for the convention to begin, Madison wrote what became known as the Virginia Plan. The Virginia Plan was submitted at the opening of the convention, and the work of the convention quickly became to amend the Virginia Plan and to fill in the gaps.[22][23] Though the Virginia Plan was an outline rather than a draft of a possible constitution, and though it was extensively changed during the debate (especially by John Rutledge and James Wilson in the Committee of Detail), its use at the convention led many to call Madison the “Father of the Constitution”.[24] He was only 36 years old.

During the course of the Convention, Madison spoke over two hundred times, and his fellow delegates rated him highly. For example, William Pierce wrote that “…every Person seems to acknowledge his greatness. In the management of every great question he evidently took the lead in the Convention… he always comes forward as the best informed Man of any point in debate.” Madison recorded the unofficial minutes of the convention, and these have become the only comprehensive record of what occurred. The historian Clinton Rossiter regarded Madison’s performance as “a combination of learning, experience, purpose, and imagination that not even Adams or Jefferson could have equaled.”[25] Years earlier he had pored over crates of books that Jefferson sent him from France on various forms of government. The historian Douglas Adair called Madison’s work “probably the most fruitful piece of scholarly research ever carried out by an American.”[26] Many have argued that this study helped prepare him for the convention.

Federalist Papers and ratification debates

The Constitutionsigners3 developed by the convention in Philadelphia had to be ratified. This would be done by special conventions called in each state to decide that sole question of ratification.[29] Madison was a leader in the ratification effort. He, Alexander Hamilton and John Jay wrote the Federalist Papers, a series of 85 newspaper articles published in New York to explain how the proposed Constitution would work, mainly by responding to criticisms from anti-federalists. They were also published in book form and became a virtual debater’s handbook for the supporters of the Constitution in the ratifying conventions.[30] The historian Clinton Rossiter called the Federalist Papers “the most important work in political science that ever has been written, or is likely ever to be written, in the United States.”[31] They were not scholarly arguments or impartial justifications for the constitution, but political polemics intended to assist the federalists in New York, which was the only state to have a coordinated anti-federalist movement. Madison was involved in the project mainly because he was a delegate to the lame duck Confederation Congress, which was meeting in New York.

If Virginia, the most populous state at the time, did not ratify the Constitution, the new national government would likely not succeed. When the Virginia convention began, the constitution had not yet been ratified by the required nine states. New York, the second largest state and a bastion of anti-federalism, would likely not ratify it if Virginia rejected the constitution, and Virginia’s exclusion from the new government would disqualify George Washington from being the first president.[32] Virginia delegates believed that Washington’s election as the first president was an implicit condition for their acceptance of the new constitution and the new government. Without Virginia, a new convention might have been held and a new constitution written in a much more polarized atmosphere, since the constitution did not specify what would happen if it was only partially ratified. The states might have joined in regional confederacies or allied with Spain, France or Britain, which still had North American colonies.[33] Arguably the most prominent anti-federalist, the powerful orator Patrick Henry was a delegate and had a following second only to Washington (who was not a delegate). Most delegates believed that most Virginians opposed the constitution.[32] Initially Madison did not want to stand for election to the Virginia ratifying convention, but was persuaded to do so because the situation looked so bad. His role at the convention was likely critical to Virginia’s ratification, and thus to the success of the constitution generally.[32]

Father of the Bill of Rights

Though the idea for a bill of rights had been suggested at the end of the constitutional convention, the delegates wanted to go home and thought the suggestion unnecessary. The omission of a bill of rights became the main argument of the anti-federalists against the constitution. Though no state conditioned ratification of the constitution on a bill of rights, several states came close, and the issue almost prevented the constitution from being ratified. Some anti-federalists continued to fight the issue after the constitution had been ratified, and threatened the entire nation with another constitutional convention. This would likely be far more partisan than the first had been. Madison objected to a specific bill of rights[41] for several reasons: he thought it was unnecessary, since it purported to protect against powers that the federal government had not been granted; that it was dangerous, since enumeration of some rights might be taken to imply the absence of other rights; and that at the state level, bills of rights had proven to be useless paper barriers against government powers.[4]

Read more about James Madison

Critical Thinking Topics: Judgment and Decision Making

Critical Thinking Topics:

Judgment and Decision Making

Discernment

Sometimes people feel that it is wrong to judge others in any way. While it is true that you should not condemn others or judge them unrighteously, you will need to make judgments of ideas, situations, and people throughout your life.

The Lord has given many commandments that you cannot keep without making judgments. For example, He has said: “Beware of false prophets. . . . Ye shall know them by their fruits” (Matthew 7:15-16) and “Go ye out from among the wicked” (D&C 38:42). You need to make judgments of people in many of your important decisions, such as choosing friends, voting for government leaders, and choosing an eternal companion.

Judgment is an important use of your agency [free will] and requires great care, especially when you make judgments about other people. All your judgments must be guided by righteous standards.

Remember that only God, who knows each individual’s heart, can make final judgments of individuals. (Revelation 20:12; 3 Nephi 27:14; D&C 137:9)

How to Make Righteous Judgments

Your righteous judgments about others can provide needed guidance for them and, in some cases, protection for you and your family. Approach any such judgment with care and compassion.

As much as you can, judge people’s situations rather than judging the people themselves. Whenever possible, refrain from making judgments until you have an adequate knowledge of the facts. Always be sensitive to the Holy Spirit, who can guide your decisions. True to the Faith, 90-91

How Do We “Judge Righteous Judgment”?

By Tyler J. Griffin

Associate Professor of Ancient Scripture, Brigham Young University

Jesus is not telling us never to judge. He is commanding us to make sure the judgments we make are righteous.

Have you ever been in a situation where somebody tried to correct another person by saying, “Judge not, that ye be not judged”? (Matthew 7:1). Few of Jesus’s teachings are more widely known than this one. Unfortunately, this phrase is not always correctly understood or applied. Our ability to benefit from this command will increase as we examine how Jesus Christ used it in His teachings and how His prophets have reiterated it through time.

In the Joseph Smith Translation of Matthew 7, we read, “Judge not unrighteously, that ye be not judged; but judge righteous judgment” (Joseph Smith Translation, Matthew 7:2 [in Matthew 7:1, footnote a]).

According to Joseph Smith’s addition to this passage in Matthew, Jesus is not telling us never to judge. He is commanding us to make sure the judgments we make are righteous.

Our Judgments of People

Dale G. Renlund of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles taught, “God cares a lot more about who we are and who we are becoming than about who we once were.”5

Our own sins and lack of perfect understanding disqualify us from being able to pass final judgments on anyone, including ourselves. We must, however, make constant intermediate judgments. We are to righteously judge actions, not condemn people.

 

Related post:

Critical Thinking Definition: Discernment and Judgment

Critical Thinking Definition: Discernment and Judgment

Critical Thinking Definition: Discernment and Judgment

Critical-thinking

keyWho says freedom is morally superior to bondage? And why is it wrong to hurt someone else? Who says? To injure or hurt someone else goes against biblical teaching. That is where the idea of it being wrong to hurt someone comes from in the first place. The Golden Rule was given to us by Jesus Christ. ~Tim Wildmon

“You have no right to judge me!” Really?

Tim Wildmon, American Family Association President

discernment-christianDo you know the favorite Bible verse of those who don’t believe in the Bible’s authority? Think about it. It’s not hard. The favorite Bible verse of those who do not believe in the Bible is: “Judge not, that you be not judged.” Now these folks cannot tell you where this verse is in the Bible, because they don’t read it. But they have heard it is in the Scriptures somewhere, so if they don’t like something you say when you pronounce something right or wrong, they whip out Matthew 7:1, and that is supposed to be the end of the discussion.

One of the problems is, if you tell others they have no right to judge someone else, you have thereby judged them for judging. You have done precisely what you claim to be against – judging. That makes you a hypocrite.

But that then begs the question – why is it wrong to be a hypocrite? Who made that judgment? We just assume that to be a true statement, which is a presupposition. But presuppositions need a foundation to be authoritative. For example, the teachings of Jesus Christ are authoritative for those who believe He is the Son of God.

Each one of us has a worldview on which we base our lives, presuppositions we operate under and make decisions on. Because of our country’s Christian heritage, most Americans, either consciously or subconsciously, derive their presuppositions about life and morality from the Bible.

Ask an average man on the street if lying is right or wrong behavior, and he is going to tell you it’s wrong. Ask him who decided lying was wrong, and he will either say, “It just is” or “My parents taught me it was wrong” or “The Bible says so.” However, “It just is,” is not an answer to the question; it is an opinion. Neither is “My parents taught me.” Parents are an authority figure, but they do not define morality in any absolute way because they are humans whose opinions are subject to change. “The Bible says so,” is a legitimate answer because if you believe the Bible is God’s Word, then you want to obey God so you don’t fall into disfavor with a supreme being who controls your eternal destiny.

bible1Many Americans will say they subscribe to the idea that a person should be free to do whatever he wishes “as long as it does not hurt anyone else.” This view is based on the presupposition that freedom is good, and it is morally wrong to hurt someone else. Who made these rules? Who says freedom is morally superior to bondage? And why is it wrong to hurt someone else? Who says? To injure or hurt someone else goes against biblical teaching. That is where the idea of it being wrong to hurt someone comes from in the first place. The Golden Rule was given to us by Jesus Christ. 

Some societies use an atheistic state government as the agent for defining what is right or wrong behavior. It’s called totalitarianism for a reason. In Muslim countries, Islamic law and teaching dominate the people’s behavior. Islam defines good and evil, wrong and right. Most European countries have what’s left of their Christian heritage to guide them, although the continent today is mostly secular with Islam rising as a possible replacement to secularism in the coming decades.   

It is a healthy exercise to ask ourselves where we get the moral values that govern our lives. Is it each person for himself, or do we acknowledge a higher power with authority to declare such? God calls on all men to submit to His will and authority. Let us pray that America will become a God-fearing people again. In Matthew 10:28 Jesus declared, “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both body and soul in hell.”

http://www.afajournal.org/recent-issues/2015/june/you-have-no-right-to-judge-me-really/

Critical Thinking: Biblical History, Moral Compass, Why the Bible Matters

YouTube Music: Classic Vivaldi

Dinner Topics for Friday

keyAnything unattempted remains impossible.

Antonio Vivaldi

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

vivaldiAntonio Lucio Vivaldi (4 March 1678 – 28 July 1741), nicknamed il Prete Rosso (“The Red Priest”) because of his red hair, was an Italian Baroque composer, Catholic priest, and virtuoso violinist, born in Venice. Recognized as one of the greatest Baroque composers, his influence during his lifetime was widespread over Europe. Vivaldi is known mainly for composing instrumental concertos, especially for the violin, as well as sacred choral works and over forty operas. His best known work is a series of violin concertos known as The Four Seasons.

Many of his compositions were written for the female music ensemble of the Ospedale della Pietà, a home for abandoned children where Vivaldi had been employed from 1703 to 1715 and from 1723 to 1740. Vivaldi also had some success with stagings of his operas in Venice, Mantua and Vienna. After meeting the Emperor Charles VI, Vivaldi moved to Vienna, hoping for preferment. The Emperor died soon after Vivaldi’s arrival.

Though Vivaldi’s music was well received during his lifetime, it later declined in popularity until its vigorous revival in the first half of the 20th century. Today, Vivaldi ranks among the most popular and widely recorded of Baroque composers.

Childhood

Antonio Lucio Vivaldi was born in 1678 in Venice,[1] then the capital of the Republic of Venice. He was baptized immediately after his birth at his home by the midwife, which led to a belief that his life was somehow in danger. Though not known for certain, the child’s immediate baptism was most likely due either to his poor health or to an earthquake that shook the city that day. In the trauma of the earthquake, Vivaldi’s mother may have dedicated him to the priesthood.[2] Vivaldi’s official church baptism did not take place until two months later.[3]

Vivaldi’s parents were Giovanni Battista Vivaldi and Camilla Calicchio, as recorded in the register of San Giovanni in Bragora.[4] Vivaldi had five siblings: Margarita Gabriela, Cecilia Maria, Bonaventura Tomaso, Zanetta Anna, and Francesco Gaetano.[5] Giovanni Battista, who was a barber before becoming a professional violinist, taught Antonio to play the violin and then toured Venice playing the violin with his young son. Antonio was probably taught at an early age, judging by the extensive musical knowledge he had acquired by the age of 24, when he started working at the Ospedale della Pietà.[6] Giovanni Battista was one of the founders of the Sovvegno dei musicisti di Santa Cecilia, an association of musicians.[7]

The president of the Sovvegno was Giovanni Legrenzi, an early Baroque composer and the maestro di cappella at St Mark’s Basilica. It is possible that Legrenzi gave the young Antonio his first lessons in composition. The Luxembourg scholar Walter Kolneder has discerned the influence of Legrenzi’s style in Vivaldi’s early liturgical work Laetatus sum (RV Anh 31), written in 1691 at the age of thirteen. Vivaldi’s father may have been a composer himself: in 1689, an opera titled La Fedeltà sfortunata was composed by a Giovanni Battista Rossi – the name under which Vivaldi’s father had joined the Sovvegno di Santa Cecilia.[8]

Vivaldi’s health was problematic. His symptoms, strettezza di petto (“tightness of the chest”), have been interpreted as a form of asthma.[3] This did not prevent him from learning to play the violin, composing or taking part in musical activities,[3] although it did stop him from playing wind instruments. In 1693, at the age of fifteen, he began studying to become a priest.[9] He was ordained in 1703, aged 25. He was soon nicknamed il Prete Rosso, “The Red Priest”, because of his red hair.[10] “Rosso” is Italian for “Red”, and would have referred to the colour of his hair, a family trait. Not long after his ordination, in 1704, he was given a dispensation from celebrating Mass because of his ill health. Vivaldi only said Mass as a priest a few times. He appears to have withdrawn from priestly duties, but he remained a priest.

At the Conservatorio dell’Ospedale della Pietà

In September 1703, Vivaldi became maestro di violino (master of violin) at an orphanage called the Pio Ospedale della Pietà (Devout Hospital of Mercy) in Venice.[1] While Vivaldi is most famous as a composer, he was regarded as an exceptional technical violinist as well. The German architect Johann Friedrich Armand von Uffenbach referred to Vivaldi as “the famous composer and violinist” and said that “Vivaldi played a solo accompaniment excellently, and at the conclusion he added a free fantasy [an improvised cadenza] which absolutely astounded me, for it is hardly possible that anyone has ever played, or ever will play, in such a fashion.”[11]

Vivaldi was only 25 when he started working at the Ospedale della Pietà. Over the next thirty years he composed most of his major works while working there.[12] There were four similar institutions in Venice; their purpose was to give shelter and education to children who were abandoned or orphaned, or whose families could not support them. They were financed by funds provided by the Republic.[13] The boys learned a trade and had to leave when they reached 15. The girls received a musical education, and the most talented stayed and became members of the Ospedale’s renowned orchestra and choir.

Shortly after Vivaldi’s appointment, the orphans began to gain appreciation and esteem abroad, too. Vivaldi wrote concertos, cantatas and sacred vocal music for them.[14] These sacred works, which number over 60, are varied: they included solo motets and large-scale choral works for soloists, double chorus, and orchestra.[15] In 1704, the position of teacher of viola all’inglese was added to his duties as violin instructor.[16] The position of maestro di coro, which was at one time filled by Vivaldi, required a lot of time and work. He had to compose an oratorio or concerto at every feast and teach the orphans both music theory and how to play certain instruments.[17]

His relationship with the board of directors of the Ospedale was often strained. The board had to take a vote every year on whether to keep a teacher. The vote on Vivaldi was seldom unanimous, and went 7 to 6 against him in 1709.[18] After a year as a freelance musician, he was recalled by the Ospedale with a unanimous vote in 1711; clearly during his year’s absence the board realized the importance of his role.[18] He became responsible for all of the musical activity of the institution[19] when he was promoted to maestro di’ concerti (music director) in 1716.[20]

In 1705, the first collection (Connor Cassara) of his works was published by Giuseppe Sala:[21] his Opus 1 is a collection of 12 sonatas for two violins and basso continuo, in a conventional style.[16] In 1709, a second collection of 12 sonatas for violin and basso continuo appeared, his Opus 2.[22] A real breakthrough as a composer came with his first collection of 12 concerti for one, two, and four violins with strings, L’estro armonico Opus 3, which was published in Amsterdam in 1711 by Estienne Roger,[23] dedicated to Grand Prince Ferdinand of Tuscany. The prince sponsored many musicians including Alessandro Scarlatti and George Frideric Handel. He was a musician himself, and Vivaldi probably met him in Venice.[24] L’estro armonico was a resounding success all over Europe. It was followed in 1714 by La stravaganza Opus 4, a collection of concerti for solo violin and strings,[25] dedicated to an old violin student of Vivaldi’s, the Venetian noble Vettor Dolfin.[26]

In February 1711, Vivaldi and his father traveled to Brescia, where his setting of the Stabat Mater (RV 621) was played as part of a religious festival. The work seems to have been written in haste: the string parts are simple, the music of the first three movements is repeated in the next three, and not all the text is set. Nevertheless, perhaps in part because of the forced essentiality of the music, the work is one of his early masterpieces.

Despite his frequent travels from 1718, the Pietà paid him 2 sequins to write two concerti a month for the orchestra and to rehearse with them at least five times when in Venice. The Pietà’s records show that he was paid for 140 concerti between 1723 and 1733.

Mantua and The Four Seasons

In 1717 or 1718, Vivaldi was offered a new prestigious position as Maestro di Cappella of the court of prince Philip of Hesse-Darmstadt, governor of Mantua.[33] He moved there for three years and produced several operas, among which was Tito Manlio (RV 738). In 1721, he was in Milan, where he presented the pastoral drama La Silvia (RV 734, 9 arias survive). He visited Milan again the following year with the oratorio L’adorazione delli tre re magi al bambino Gesù (RV 645, also lost). In 1722 he moved to Rome, where he introduced his operas’ new style. The new pope Benedict XIII invited Vivaldi to play for him. In 1725, Vivaldi returned to Venice, where he produced four operas in the same year.

During this period Vivaldi wrote the Four Seasons, four violin concertos depicting scenes appropriate for each season. Three of the concerti are of original conception, while the first, “Spring”, borrows motifs from a Sinfonia in the first act of his contemporaneous opera “Il Giustino“. The inspiration for the concertos was probably the countryside around Mantua. They were a revolution in musical conception: in them Vivaldi represented flowing creeks, singing birds (of different species, each specifically characterized), barking dogs, buzzing mosquitoes, crying shepherds, storms, drunken dancers, silent nights, hunting parties from both the hunters’ and the prey’s point of view, frozen landscapes, ice-skating children, and warming winter fires. Each concerto is associated with a sonnet, possibly by Vivaldi, describing the scenes depicted in the music. They were published as the first four concertos in a collection of twelve, Il cimento dell’armonia e dell’inventione, Opus 8, published in Amsterdam by Le Cène in 1725.

During his time in Mantua, Vivaldi became acquainted with an aspiring young singer Anna Tessieri Girò who was to become his student, protégée, and favorite prima donna.[34] Anna, along with her older half-sister Paolina, became part of Vivaldi’s entourage and regularly accompanied him on his many travels. There was speculation about the nature of Vivaldi’s and Giro’s relationship, but no evidence to indicate anything beyond friendship and professional collaboration. Although Vivaldi’s relationship with Anna Girò was questioned, he adamantly denied any romantic relationship in a letter to his patron Bentivoglio dated 16 November 1737

Read more

Political Cartoon: Socialism failure vs. Golden Goose of Capitalism Benefits

Political Cartoon:

Socialism Failure vs. Golden Goose of Capitalism Benefits

Bad to the Bone

This is a story about capitalism’s Golden Goose and what socialism will do to it if they ever get total control— a parasite that eventually eats the host.  Political Cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2019.

More A.F. Branco Cartoons at The Daily Torch.

Biblical Worldview News: Capitalism Benefits the Poor; Media Effects on Children; Trail Life USA succeeds

Biblical Worldview News:

Capitalism Benefits the Poor; Media Effects on Children; Trail Life USA succeeds

March 2019 – According to Star Parker (photo above), founder of the Center for Urban Renewal and Education, President Donald Trump is using capitalism quite effectively to help America’s poorest citizens. Parker believes Trump’s policies are helping low-income Americans who have not previously been participating in the nation’s economic prosperity.

With unemployment at historic lows, Parker is excited over Trump’s executive order to establish the White House Opportunity and Revitalization Council to implement Opportunity Zones previously created in the 2017 tax bill.

Opportunity Zones are designated areas within all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and five U.S. territories where poverty often stands at twice the national average. Private investors in these zones will receive preferred tax treatment, thereby encouraging economic growth.

During remarks at the White House signing ceremony for this executive order, billionaire BET network founder Bob Johnson said the president’s new tax programs “will cause people to invest money where before they saw risk, now they will see opportunity. And that combination of putting money into communities will allow for those communities to become vibrant, to become safe, to create ownership, and, most important, to contribute to the well-being of this country.”

 

President Trump helps American poor through capitalism

 

Study examines  media effects on children

March 2019 –By the time a child is 17 years old, he or she will have been exposed to an average of 60,000 hours of media. In December 2018, the National Institutes of Health began a study to examine the impact of screen time using smartphones, tablets, and video games on 11,000 children ages 9 and 10. The study will follow them for 10 years to determine the long-term effect of media exposure.

The first round of MRIs conducted on subjects in this study found significant changes in the brains of kids who had more than seven hours of screen time daily. For example, researchers found a premature thinning of the outer cortex of the brain in these children, which may indicate earlier brain maturation. This early in the study, the impact of such changes is uncertain.

movieguide.org, 12/11/18

Issues@Hand

Scouts stumbling, Trail Life thriving

March 2019 – Boy Scouts of America is facing bankruptcy. BSA embarked on a downward spiral with its 2013 decision to welcome homosexual boys to its troops. Soon thereafter, it opened the door to homosexual leaders, and then quickly added girls to the mix.

In December 2018, BSA announced it would remove the word boy from its name and become Scouts BSA in February 2019.

Ironically, Girl Scouts of America has sued BSA for changing its name.

“Families have voted with their feet,” said Rob Swarzwalder, senior VP at Family Research Council. He said BSA membership dropped by almost one-third from 2014 to 2018.

In contrast, Trail Life USA (traillifeusa.com), a Christian scouting group for boys founded in 2013, is growing steadily, offering many of the same outdoor adventures and character development components once taught by BSA.

Trail Life CEO Mark Hancock ob-
served, “As organizations that help boys, we’re either going to bring clarity to that or we’re going to contribute to the moral confusion boys are experiencing.”

He attributes Trail Life’s 35% membership jump in 2018 to the group’s unapologetic Christ-centered mission.

onenewsnow, 12/28/18; stream.org, 12/16/18

Scouts stumbling, Trail Life thriving

Issues@Hand

AFR helps disciple kids, save unborn lives

March 2019 – Last fall, American Family Radio partnered with Samaritan’s Purse to urge listeners to send more than 6,200 Christmas Shoeboxes to needy children.

Furthermore, AFR listeners pledged funds to provide more than 11,000 copies of The Greatest Journey Bible and discipleship studies for children.

“Please pray that the children who participate in TGJ really will find Christ and begin their greatest journey,” said AFR general manager Jim Stanley.

Featuring Pre-Born Ministry, in mid-January, AFR listeners pledged to provide 2,949 ultrasounds for pro-life pregnancy resource centers. Pre-Born reports that 80% of the abortion-minded women decide to give their baby life after experiencing an ultrasound.

 

AFR helps disciple kids, save unborn lives

 

Biblical Worldview News: Pro-Life Views upward shift; Victory for Religious Freedom

Biblical Worldview News:

Pro-Life Views upward shift; Victory for Religious Freedom

Abortion Poll: 17-Point Shift Toward Pro-Life Views in Single Month

Dr. Susan Berry

A Marist poll released Monday reveals recent legislation to make abortion a fundamental right and allow the procedure even moments before birth has led to a “sudden and dramatic shift” toward the pro-life position.

 

Abortion Poll: 17-Point Shift Toward Pro-Life Stance in Single Month

 

Ohio pro-life legislation – pass and fail

March 2019 – Two important pieces of pro-life legislation passed both houses of Ohio’s legislature in December. But one was vetoed by then Governor John Kasich (R).

By a landslide vote, state legislators passed SB 145, a bill banning dilation and evacuation procedures – dismemberment abortions. Kasich signed that bill into law on December 21.

In 2017 alone, approximately 3,500 babies were killed through dismemberment abortions in Ohio.

“Essentially, the abortionist dilates the woman’s cervix and then rips the baby limb from limb using sterile instruments,” explained Jamieson Gordon of Ohio Right to Life.

Conversely, after both houses of the legislature passed HB 258, known as the “Heartbeat Bill,” Gov. Kasich vetoed it before his term ended in January. While the House successfully voted to override his veto, the Senate failed by one vote.

Janet Porter of Faith2Action said pro-lifers will work with Gov. Mike DeWine (R) who has stated that if HB 258 passes again, he will sign the bill banning abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected – usually after six weeks of pregnancy (four weeks gestation).

“[W]e believe that is a very strong line to draw for the first evidences of life,” said Barry Sheets, spokesperson for Right to Life Coalition of Ohio.

Victory for Religious Freedom: Obama recess appointee ousted

March 2019 – Chai Feldblum (photo above) was a 2010 Barack Obama recess appointment to serve on the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the federal agency charged with protecting freedom of religious expression. Feldblum, however, was an outspoken opponent of religious freedom.

“Sexual liberty should win [over religious liberty] in most cases,” Feldblum has said.

Surprisingly, President Donald Trump renominated her to serve another term, but an uprising of conservative opposition moved him to reconsider.

AFA Action was among groups leading a campaign that moved the president to rescind the nomination.

“It’s a real victory for the U.S. Constitution and religious liberty in America!” exclaimed AFA Action director Rob Chambers.

Political Cartoon: Socialism Fails, Always

Political Cartoon:

Socialism Fails, Always—No Matter Who’s In Charge!

Bernie in earlier time spoke fondly of bread lines in socialist/communist type countries and now promises to transform America when elected president. Political Cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2019.

More A.F. Branco cartoons at FlagAnd Cross.com here.