02010-09-28 | Uncategorized | 7 comments

Beautiful Morning. Finished re-reading Pattern Recognition last night, which was perhaps even better the second time, and started reading Going, Going, Gone by Jack Womack, who William Gibson mentioned many times, and who is thanked in Pattern Recognition. I like what I read so far!

Today we have a three hour rehearsal, followed by a three hour recording session with the percussionist, who will play on the new version of The Santa Fe Sessions. Tomorrow, we will keep the same schedule.

A few quick words on my statement yesterday that culture leads politics and not the other way around. What created the changes in the Sixties and Seventies? Politicians or the cultural ground swell. What do you suppose has done more for the acceptance of gays and lesbians and their rights, politicians, or TV shows that showed them to be like all other people, with similar dreams, similar hopes, and so on. And again, what do you suppose will do more to change our rotten educational system, a few politicians, or the new movie Waiting for Superman – assuming that it will receive a wide release and people get to see it and discuss it. The conclusion, for me, is that money would be better spent supporting cultural causes, rather then individual politicians or their parties. Something to think about. Please add examples that come to your mind, either agreeing with or contradicting this idea that culture drives change, not politicians.


  1. Boris

    I have two questions: In how far has culture led to the financial crisis? Or better: what does the crisis tell us about the culture of the last, say, 20 years? And, what does the stage, our political systems have created, tell us about our culture. Or the politicians?

    It is both, pretty interesting and pretty frustrating when you are working close to a Parliament.

  2. Ottmar

    That’s a good question. Here is what I think:

    First I want to introduce two more terms to this, authority and power. I would define authority as excellence in a given field. With knowledge and mastery comes authority. Power is often, unfortunately, just power, might, taken by a person or group (((king, despot, dictator))), or given to a person or group (((democracy))). Politicians deal in power. If they have any authority, it lies in knowing how to be elected, how to be re-elected, and how to play the power game within the structure that is given.

    Let me think of a more concrete example… an elected official has the power to regulate banking, but not much authority. In other words s/he generally does not have sufficient knowledge of the huge field of banking and all it’s details. S/he will depend on the advice of people who do have some kind of authority in the field.

    Now, I don’t know whether these are terms generally used in talking about politics, they are just words that work for me.

    If I look at the last thirty years, since 1980, it seems to me that culture has approved, ney worshipped money and fame over excellence and quality. It didn’t seem to matter what people did to obtain wealth, or fame. As this became a more and more widespread view, people became more and more daring, including ponzi schemes and so on. Since culture seemed to approve of this point of view, politicians stood by and did nothing. Most of them probably did not understand any of the financial daring that took place anyway. A U.S. Senator once told me that another Senator told her his BlackBerry was broken. She looked at it, switched it on and gave it back to him, the device working just fine. Power yes, authority – very little.

    These are new thoughts to me, and they may be a little half-baked and not fully grown, but I find this POV intriguing.

  3. yumi

    “These are new thoughts to me, and they may be a little half-baked…”

    No, maybe those good, new thoughts are, “raw” and not fully, “cooked” as yet. Let’s think about this sentence in conjunction with Synder:

    “…The raw are full of promise, the cooked take care of themselves…”

    Here’s another:

    “The raw, the cooked and the underdone”.

  4. Brenda

    Culture is who we are not what a politician wants us to be!
    I lobbyed for a cause a few years ago and it was so “eye opening” how self centered politicians had become over the years! Politicians should be about SERVING THE PEOPLE not just your “Good Old Boys” Club. Politician should respresent Truth not Lies.
    Culture equals People and I just love how God created us so we would create soooooooooo many different cultures!

  5. Carol Anderson

    I don’t believe better education can be legislated. It’s got to be a ground level surge. A teacher who is acultured and interested in learning more and more about many different subjects and cultures, etc. And that teacher must have a sense of humor and fun in the joy of learning. If the teacher has enthusiasm herself she must appreciate the interests of the students and encourage them to go farther in those interests. We have so many places to go for information to help them grow, and they can be integrated into other necessary skills.
    I retired about the time we had to take our after school time usually used for planning the next day…to read and try to decypher the polysyllobic instructions from the government. Good try, but it ain’t gonna do the magic trick.

  6. Kaz

    Tuesday’s Politics – What are politicians but mere leaves that bend to a light gust of lobby.. When there season has come and gone they change there color and fall to later reappear to a new season. Nothing can be more deep rooted than culture when properly cultivated.

  7. Brenda

    Very Nicely said KAZ!!! THANK YOU!!!


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