me too I know that feeling and thanks for your inspiring publication on Bach.
But I’m still optimistic because I believe that all that kind of thinking, and
the existence of strong art (whatever that means), have a long term,
homeopathic, spiritual influence on people's mind.
And certainly concerning education of children.
At the other hand it's a struggle of all times: "contemplating the way today’s
vulgarities seem to command the overwhelming share of our energy and attention",
I'm afraid that the culture of vulgarity has always been dominant in all times
and not only in Western society.
All the best.
Van: FrameWorks <frameworks-boun...@jonasmekasfilms.com> namens Els van Riel
Verzonden: maandag 12 februari 2018 10:05
Aan: Experimental Film Discussion List
Onderwerp: Re: [Frameworks] FILMS for ONE to EIGHT PROJECTORS tour dates (VERY
Thank you Fred for your essay!
(winter here too, but our sky is blue today)
Els van Riel
On 11 Feb 2018, at 21:31, Fred Camper
I have been staying away from "meta" comments on this list in recent years, but
now I cannot resist. What follows is all seriously off-topic, so feel free to
The only negative comment I can make to Jonathan is that none of the mistakenly
sent personal emails over the years have even remotely measured up to the
gentle, almost poetic love letter someone posted by mistake -- someone who then
vanished from the list. We never did learn how far along the affair, or
hoped-for affair, progressed, but I for one hope it blossomed into bliss.
I will try to see a Beebe show when I can.
But the other comment, to Jonathan and all, is that I have more than one friend
who has reported strange depressions and other disconnections in the last year.
And I have had to admit to myself that I am part of this too -- how else to
explain staying in bed most of some days, alternating between doing nothing and
reading the news on my phone, when things i would enjoy much more, and actually
believe in, beckon? And I have a diagnosis for us: we are depressed because the
world is going to hell. Or as Jonathan put it, our civilization might not make
it. The planet might not too.
It is not just that "short-fingered vulgarian" at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue;
look at what is going on in Poland, Hungary, Turkey, the Philippines, and many
other countries: just as bad, though mostly without the threat of nuclear
I have a theory. There was a drought in Syria a decade ago, causing huge
migration to the cities, providing people with nothing much to do. Many fought
in the coming civil war. There are many causes for droughts; climate change
could be on contributor. Is much of the entire migrant crisis due to climate
change? Given that Trump's election win was so narrow, it probably was; even
though the decline of coal was not caused by climate-sensitive
environmentalists, many voters thought it was. The unpredictable and surprising
effects of climate change seem likely to me to cause populations to the
rational thinking that is essential to democracy and seek out "Great Leaders,"
however hideous they might be. If these effects are happening now, with a sea
level rise of less than a foot since 1900, I shudder to think of the result of
the sea level rising only one foot from here, something that seems inevitable.
There are many more effects besides flooding, including increasingly harsh
weather extremes, such as massive storms, of which we have already seen a few.
I sure hope I am wrong, that we will institute fixes for the climate (which
will however require massive carbon-removal projects as well as an end to
emissions) before it is too late, and that in a few years we will be seeing
democracies progress again. But meanwhile the US is ruled by a would-be despot
who thinks that the Democrats' failure to applaud his speech constitutes
treason, also showing that they do not love their country very much (which, by
the way, is not the same thing as treason). Applauding the leader's speech =
loving one's country. I can think of other countries whose governments would
claim that, but all are bad dictatorships.
I cannot believe that even the rational do-gooder "good people" are mostly not
acting on the massive threat climate change presents. Curing disease in Africa,
as the Gates Foundation is doing, will make no difference in the face of this
I have a short, somewhat related essay, titled Trump, Bach, and Me, at
http://fredcamper.com/W/Bach.html in both print and audio form.
On 2/11/2018 9:33 AM, Jonathan Walley wrote:
Ha Ha! I used to heap scorn and mockery upon people who accidentally sent
personal emails to listservs by incorrectly replying. But now I have made the
same embarrassing gaffe! Oh, woe is me.
Well, now everyone knows about my very high opinion of Roger Beebe’s work,
which you absolutely should see if Roger comes to your town, as well as my
personal anguish and agony - and I welcome any commiserating responses, as well
as scorn and mockery. I could have pretended it was an intentionally
post-modern “review” of Roger’s show, in the tradition of published letters to
and from filmmakers and critics (Dear Stan Brakhage…), but I decided to be
honest instead. But Roger, since it’s now public, you’re welcome to use my
email in any and all publicity for your forthcoming programs.
Sorry everyone for unwittingly - wittlessly - opening the grimy window onto my
Dr. Jonathan Walley
Associate Professor and Chair
Department of Cinema
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