Monthly Archives: February 2022

Liberty and Honor

A reader asked me to define liberty as used in my post COVID – 2 Years and Counting. I will lean on JS Mill, Isaiah Berlin, and Frederich Hayek in the formulation that follows. Broadly assessed, liberty can be divided into two species – positive and negative. I realize this is a gigantic oversimplification, but…


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Serious Operas With Happy Endings

Serious operas typically end with some, or even all, of the principals dead. Death is as frequent in opera as corruption is in politics. I thought it would be interesting to present a few that don’t require an undertaker after the final curtain. My definition of a serious opera is one that is not a…


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The Tragedy of Macbeth – Review

Joel Coen, of Coen brothers renown, has filmed an adaptation of Shakespeare’s play – his first on his own. The movie had a limited run before moving to Apple TV+. Recorded in stark black and white with an almost square aspect ratio, it is an effective evocation of the great play. Interestingly, the version used…


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COVID – 2 Years and Counting

You’d have to be entombed along with Radames and Aida not to know what’s happened to the world secondary to a virus that found its way out of Wuhan China to the farthest reaches of the planet. My purpose is not to rehash the facts of the pandemic, but rather to consider why the world…


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Finale 32 – I Vespri Siciliani Act 3

Verdi’s The Sicilian Vespers was written to a French text by Eugene Scribe – Les vêpres siciliennes. It first appeared at the Paris Opera in 1855. Its French iteration was unsuccessful and it disappeared from France, and most of the rest of the operatic world, until fairly recently. In its Italian form is was more…


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Eugene Dabezies, MD (1935-2021)

Gene Dabezies was my friend and colleague for the last 30 years. I came to know him as well as could anyone outside of his family. He had the most successful life I know of. What made his very long life unique was that he functioned at the highest levels in all the facets of…


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The Old Man’s Black and White Cat

Before the shortest days begin to grow A bent head the pallor of broken snowSheds its silence and thinks of ancient daysWhen the finite was in its boundless phaseMemories are foamy seas tossed to hideThe blemished vines of scars long put aside There is though one that quiet keeps returningAn antique pain of relapsing yearningA…


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