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August 20 2017 1 20 /08 /August /2017 22:02
Not only in Vienna an admonishing-fire was burning for freedom of speech in 2017 ...
Viennese Fire in the Alps for freedom of expression

Since 1988 on every 2nd Saturday in August in the whole Alpine-region the initiative "Feuer in den Alpen" (Fire in the Alps) takes place. With admonishing-fires the organizers point on a specific issue, that's important to them.

It's a kind of fire-tradition as common in this part of the world.

 

The 7th Viennese admonishing-fire this year stands for freedom of expression.

"Freedom of expression?" many of you are going to ask for certain. But it is it, that especially since around ¾ of a year is quite severely threatened:

  • In Internet, specifically in social-networks and search-engines, more and more often links are withhold from the public under the cloak of "right to be forgotten", "fake-news" and "hate-speech".

  • Mass-surveillance, in the internet as well as at smartphone-activities, but also in public-spaces is increasing massively.
    The pretext of this measure is the "fight against terrorism", which for the rulers seems to dominate even over fundamental-rights.

  • Furthermore pressure on alternative-media and individuals publicly expression system-critical view is growing. And pressure can be applied on their credibility as well as on their economical foundations (i.e. on their advertising-customers).

 

It's to go without a saying, that certain persons, suspected serious crimes after judicial approval may even be strictly monitored and their privacy may be broken.

It's to go without a saying as well, that persons, who have committed defamation, libel or slander are held accountable.

 

... also in southern Italy attention was drawn on freedom of speech with an admonishing fire.
Southern-Italian alpine-fire for freedom of expression

However, it is completely incompatible with democracy, if "truth-ministries" or similar bodies decide, which opinions are permissible in public and which not. Because that's always highly subjective.

The founding fathers of democratic States for very good reasons have defined the scope of "Freedom of expression" very amply.

 

No individual is objective, everyone of us has his own interests and beliefs. And of course this is the same with authorities and companies & organisations working for the authorities.

Also the so called "fake-news-hunters" are highly subjective and have massive

 

The so-called Fake-News-hunters are subjective and have massive self-interests.

Also algorithms are often wrong and often make more than dubious decisions, which content they rank down or even delete.

 

Freedom of expression is an extremely important value!

The ignorance in terms of it vulnerability today is sadly big – also in the "sceptical-community".

I think, that this is because in the Western countries freedom of expression is something, what for decades is recognized as given and we can't imagine anything different.

 

And on the part of the media 2017 there sadly has been very little coverage of the Viennese "Feuer in den Alpen" as well.

"Freedom of speech" seems to be a very awkward topic.

But awkward or not – it's such an important issue, that we are going to continue addressing it and addressing it even more determined.

 

Just because freedom of expression is that crucial for democracy and freedom, we have to stand up for it.

 

And this every individual, each one of us can:

  • Standing up for it for example by discussing even controversial subjects frankly, but in a civilized manner.

  • Standing up for it by getting our information not only from the ubiquitous mainstream-media, but also from alternative-media. This widens our view of the world and it's also a contribution to diversity in the media-landscape.

I'm doing this and I hope many of you as well!

 

 

Additional links:

  • Official website of the whole event "Feuer in den Alpen", operated by the organisation CIPRA from Switzerland:
    http://www.feuerindenalpen.com/ (English information availlable)

  • Website of the organisers of the "Feuer in den Alpen" Vienna, the "Plattform Direkte Demokratie" (plattform direct-democracy) Wien
    http://demokratie-plattform.at (German website)

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August 5 2017 7 05 /08 /August /2017 10:38
The main-stand with the video-wall at the Beachvolleyball World-Championship 2017 in Vienna was well frequented

In Vienna at the Donauinsel (Danube-Island) from 28th of July to 6th of August (so this week) the beachvolleyball world-championship takes place. So in the true sense of the word a major-event takes place in my backyard – I live only a 10 minutes walk away from the location on Donauinsel. And that's why it was absolutely clear to me, that I'm gonna pay a visit there and to experience one or another game live.

 

But of course I also have other things to do than watching volleyball. And of course this week temperatures were really very high, something that's not promotive for visiting an open-air event. On Wednesday however I made it to the championship.
And I have to say: I very much enjoyed it.

 

I came there shortly before noon and I watched altogether 4 games:

  • 2 men- and 2 women-matches
  • 2 matches on the centre-court and 2 matches on the side-courts
  • and thank god at least 1 match with „Austrian contribution“

 

1st match was Kunert-Dressler (Austria) against Williams-Philip (Trinidad & Tobago).
A plain sailing for the Austrians, who made it into the tournaments knockout-stage with this.
For die Caribbeans it was the 1st world-championship and in line with this they had to pay apprentice's due.
Was nevertheless quite a good match with appealing rallies, especially by the Austrians, but also frequently by the Trinidad guys.

 

The 2nd match was the best one I watched live.
With the US-Americans Brunner-Patterson and the Brazilians Pedro-Guto 2 great duos battled in the arena.
Finally after a close 3-set match the Brazilians won, who secured the first place in their preliminary group with this.
More important to me was, that both played many great rallies and showed many attractive strikes.
A pleasure to watch and absolutely championship-worthy!

 

Subsequently to this match I moved from the centre-court to the side-courts.
The atmosphere on both courts really was very different:
While on centre-court everything was designed for a big show, on the side-courts everything revolves about the sport itself.
Video-wall vs. simple number-board, Entertainer vs. court-announcer sporadically telling the results. And of course on the side-courts to matches simultaneously side by side.

 

There I watched – as just mentioned  simultaneously – the matches  Antonelli-Carol from Brazil vs. Bawden-Clancy from Australia, as well as Davidova-Shchypkova from Ukraine against Maia-Lima from Brazil.

 

Also the women-matches were close, thus captivating and also the level of their game was high to very high.

And the crowd at the women-matches on the side-courts were even more passionate and cheered their teams enthusiastically. This truly was pure sports – and this is something in my favour!
Finally in both matches the Brazilian duos prevailed in 3 close sets.

 

In case I created enough suspense at my readers with this blog-entry and were able to whet appetite for more, I keep you informed about the tournaments progress with a little update on Sunday of Monday.

 

Conclusion:

A strong event this Beachvolleyball world-championship, that I really liked.
The events setting was felicitous and the performance-level absolutely championship-worthy.
This years championships take place until tomorrow Sunday (so from today just less than 2 days). And now we are in the tournaments crunch-mode, when the decision about the medallists takes place.


So when you have some leisure-time left, then make a visit at the Donauinsel. The event is even for free. Only in case you have claustrophobia you should attend it – but then anyway you should avoid every big event ;-)


 

Update 10th of August 2017:

I have promised to deliver the event's results and so I do:
 

Ladies

At the Ladies the Germans Ludwig-Walkenhorst won Gold against US-Americans Ross-Fendrick. In the Bronze-match Brazilians Larissa-Talita prevailed against Canadians Pavan-Humana-Paredes.

From the Ladies-duos I watched only Antonelli-Carol with a 5th place finished close to the medals.

 

Gentlemen

At the men from an Austrian point of view it was a fantastic-result:

Our top-duo Doppler-Horst made it into the final and there in 2 very close sets was defeated by the new world-champions Evandro-Andre. That means Gold for Brazil and Silver for Austria.
Bronze-medal was conquered by Russians Krasilnikov-Liamin against Dutch Varenhorst-Van Garderen.

At the men-event none of the duos I watched at my visits made it into the event's "hot phase".

 

Image-Gallery

Furthermore I have also added a little image-gallery of my visit at the Beachvolleyball world-championships, just a 10 minutes walk away from my current home.

 

The main-stand on the centre-court of the Beachvolleyball world-championship 2017

The Austrians Thomas Kunert und Christoph Dressler ...

... clearly beat Caribbeans Daneil Williams and Marlon Phillip

 

In the best match at my visit ...

... when Brazilians Pedro-Guto played against US-Americans Patterson-Brunner ...

... and the Brazilians prevailed in 3 narrow sets

 

Beach-Girls must not be missing at a big Beachvolleyball event

The Ladies however also showed us strong performances on the courts, just like ...

... die Ukrainerinnen Davidova-Shchypkova und die Brasilianerinnen Maia-Lima.

 

In the 2nd Ladies-match at my visit ...

... Brazilians Antonelli-Carol played against Australians Bawden-Clancy.

In both Ladies-matches the Brasil-Duos prevailed in 3 narrow sets

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April 19 2017 4 19 /04 /April /2017 15:00

Also today "Together" by Jonathan and Charlotte is a strong piece of modern-classical-musicAbout 4 years ago, in 2013, I stumbled upon the young British popera-duo "Jonathan & Charlotte" (this is Jonathan Antoine and Charlotte Jaconelli). Shortly thereafter I wrote a blog-entry about them.
1 year later, in 2014, the duo broke-up then, whereat I wrote another post.

 

Both blog-entries have become and still today are big hits, especially the one about the split of Jonathan and Charlotte. At the time, I've promised a CD-review – and now I redeem this promise.

 

Who is not familiar with the two, should inform himself about them in my former blog-entries. So far only that much: Especially Jonathan has an incredibly good voice and as a duo the two have written casting-show history, because they remained faithful to themselves and to each other even in difficult situations.

The review of “Together”

"Together" is the Duos 1st CD, that appeared in 2012, the year when “Jonathan & Charlotte” made their great break-through in "Britain's Got Talent".

 

As in the show and the successful songs they presented there, they sing almost everything in Italian.
And the majority of their songs are "italianised" and "classicalised" cover-versions of successful pop-songs.

 

So let's get into medias res and review every track of the CD indivdually in ascending order:

  1. The Prayer
    “THE” classic-track of Jonathan and Charlotte with that they have made their breakthrough at the audition and won the 2nd place in the show's final.
    Beautiful song in a very successful version. The voices of the two just do well fit for this song.
    And the final touch is the vocal-support of the men's choir "Only boy in a loud", that ranked on 3rd place behind the duo in “Britain's got talent” 2012.

     

  2. Caruso
    For me the best song of the two. In terms of composition very good and tailor-made for Jonathan and Charlotte. Each of them attains top-form and in addition they also perfectly harmonise with each other.

     

  3. Vero Amore (Cover of Elton John's „Your Song“)
    Workmanlike very good as well, but I definitely prefers Sir Elton John's original-version.

     

  4. Ave Maria
    A classic of classical-music. Musically very well performed by the two, particularly Jonathan, the songs arrangement to me seems a bit cluttered.

     

  5. Forse (Unintended-Cover from Muse)
    In my eyes (or ears) by far the album's best cover-version. And not only that: I like "Forse" even better than the Muse-original.

     

  6. Il mondo nostro („Rule the World“ cover from „Take That“)
    To me less appealing, despite the well-established voices.

     

  7. Canto della Terra
    Also a classic of modern-classic. And from my point of view the best existing version of this song I know, even slightly better than Andrea Bocelli's.

     

  8. Ognuno Soffer (Cover von „Everybody Hurts“ von R.E.M)
    I quite like it and value the “classicalisation” suitable and well realised by J. & C.

     

  9. Chi Mai Vivrà Per Sempre (Queen-Cover of „Who Wants To Live Forever“ from the movie “Highlander”)
    To me very similar to the R.E.M-Cover, pretty good, also because this song is also well suited for a “classicalisation”.

     

  10. La Prima Volta („The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face“, Cover von Robert Flack)
    For me the poorest song on this CD. But that depends on the original, which I also disliked white a lot, not on issues of the cover-version. As well as Jonathan and Charlotte, Celine Dion as well could not improve it in her version.

Bottom line

Everyone consindering to buy this CD should clearly understand, that you should like Italian singing and modern-classical music, specifically “classicalisations” of well-known pop-songs.

 

If this is the case, then “Together” for my part is a flawless recommendation.

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April 15 2017 7 15 /04 /April /2017 20:05

An open letter to the President of the United States, Donald Trump:

 

Dear Mr. President Trump!

 

Early in the morning at 7th of April, you as President ordered to attack an airbase of the Syrian army with cruise-missiles type "Tomahawk".

 

Much is uncertain. But it is for certain that you wanted to send a signal. And it's certain, that you play with global-peace and risk a World-War-III.

 

The official reason for your attack-command was a serious poison-gas incident in the Syrian city of Chan Scheichun, in which dozens of people have been killed and hundreds have been injured. However to whom the gas belonged to and who used it, that was completely unclear 1 week ago and is still unclear today!

And that's exactly why this terrible incident has to be clarified as objectively as possible, the OPCW (Organization for the prohibition of chemical weapons) is best placed to do this in my eyes.

 

I can understand, that you have been profoundly touched by the pictures of the killed and injured people.

I can also understand that you are under tremendous pressure from the Neo-Cons and the military-industrial complex, which in principle always want the United States wage war.

And the domestic political pressure on you by protagonists such as John McCain or Lindsey Graham is very high.

 

Nevertheless your games with global-peace are totally out of question - whether they take place in Syria, North-Korea or elsewhere! And this not only for factual reasons – that a 3rd World-War you are currently risking were disastrous should be clear to every human being, which is capable of reasonable thinking. No, you prior to your presidential candidacy, during your presidential candidacy and also at the beginning of your presidency, countless times emphasised, that you are against military solutions and for deals, especially for reaching a deal with Russia.

 

That there will also be downsides in your Presidency, always was clear to me. One for me most is your contempt and criminalization of "Whistleblowers" such as Edward Snowden, a person which I personally consider a freedom-fighter and hero.

But I valued your victory over Hillary Clinton for 1 pivotal reason as positive: Because you wanted to advocate for peaceful solutions and dialogue with Russia.

 

Michael Lüders, at least in the German-speaking countries an outstanding Middle-East-Expert, excellently brings the situation in Syria on the point, especially the fact that:

  1. Currently it's still completely unclear who in Syria is responsible for the use of poison-gas on 04th April 2017 – and that it can only be unclear, since no investigation has taken place so far.
  2. We already know this situation from 2013, that Assad was held responsible for a poison-gas attack, for which with a probability bordering on certainty other forces were responsible – which was why Barack Obama had called off an attack on Syria.

 

 

And not enough with the actions in Syria:

After the dropping of the largest non-nuclear bomb in Afghanistan and the deployment of Troops ahead of North-Korea many people, also me, hear the alarm-bells ringing, because they fear a World-War.

 

Therefore, I appeal to you:

Remember your plans and promises from your election-campaign, return to the path of peace. Join forces with politicians (in the U.S., especially Rand Paul and Tulsi Gabbard), the media and, of course, with citizens of our mother-earth who also want to maintain peace.

 

Right now, just before Easter, the highest feast Christianity, you as Christian should do really everything, that we not only respect peace at Easter, but in addition to make our world a peaceful and better place - we only have this one!

 

With best regards from Austria,

Ulrich Lintl

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January 28 2017 7 28 /01 /January /2017 15:56

GetSimple is one of the best light-weighted CMS ever

There are many content management systems (CMS) existing. To most famous belong WordPress, Joomla and Typo3. But all of them require an MySQL-database of the server. And above all the installation and the adaptation of the systems to your own needs is quite complex.

 

As small and technically simple websites are not in need of the major CMS’ extensive capabilities, some small, simple programs without database have evolved.

The in my eyes best and simple to use of these is GetSimple (GS).

 

Why? Because GetSimple is:

  1. Easy to install
  2. easy to use
  3. easy to expand
  4. and easy to personalize.

I have taken a closer look on some “lightweight-CMS”. But just when working with GetSimple I really have understood the functionality of content-management-systems.

 

It's also great that there are many extensions, that generally there is a considerably large and active community, and that the system gets many bugfix- and security-updates.

 

The 1st time I “stumbled upon” this tool when when researching for simple CMS – and I think this was in 2013. Until I really got into GetSimple was in 2015. But the website for the enlargement of train-line S45 in Vienna I created then I abandoned soon after creation for non-technical reasons.

 

But in 2017 I really gonna rumble with website-development based onf GetSimple:

1st project is my page as adult-educator at http://www.informationsspezialist.at – the “skeleton” of my site is already available (Status: 28th January 2017). Also a complete redesign of my personel-website, the Lintl-Net, is definitely on my agenda – of course also based on GetSimple.

 

GetSimple was designed and developed in 2009 by US-american Chris Cagle. Chris in the meantime has withdrawn from the system’s development and maintenance. Current lead-developer for some years is Shawn Alverson.

And beside up to now 13 fixes form version 3.3, Shawn just prepares GetSimple 3.4, which should support PHP 5.3. This is very important, because already in 2017 the first major internet-service-providers stop supporting version 5.2. With PHP 5.3 however, hosting would be very well possible for the next few years.

 

I am worried about the fact, that the last minor-update is 3 years and the last major-update even 6 years ago.

The system is still good, even as good that it was able to convince many new staunch users

in the last 2 years.

A version 3.4 is already planned since 2014. And in 2017 – according  to lead-developer Shawn – it should really be published – again at last!.

 

GetSimple to me is just THE simple CMS of the 2010s years.

But to hold this position also in long term and to keep GetSimple competitive also in the 2020s, there need to come significant improvements and enhancements to this great CMS in the near future.

 

Significant improvements to the existing system from my point of view could include:

  • Adaption of the software to new versions of PHP (in mid-term to PHP 7.X, in short-term as intermediate-step maybe to PHP 5.6)
  • Improvements and expansion of the systems modularity
  • Interoperability of software, especially in terms of the upcoming massive digital-connectabilty & automated data-exchange (APIs in generel, economy-4.0, headless-CMS, …)
  • Especially on the next major-release a big focus on compatibility of extensions (given the many and good plug-ins for GS 3.3)

 

I think that a main-reason for the lack of major improvement-steps is in the last 3 years, is, that at least the majority of the development-work for the core-system solely depends on Shawn and there is hardly no support from the community. At least that’s my impression.

 

So to me the establishment of an association or a foundation should be considered, which could collect money and could assign at least a part of the development as paid jobs.

 

A good model this approach is the content-management-system Contao. For evolving this there is association in Switzerland, currently including 45 sponsoring-members.

 

ReactOS also is an example that only easily going on development again can be massively accellerated by establishing an organization with appropiate financial-funding (in the case of ReactOS from Germany and by Russia).

 

Either way I'm going to intensively work with GetSimple in 2017 and to recommend the system actively. Above that I hope that development gets of the ground again as much, that this great, little content-management-system can me made competitive for the 2020s and that in 10 years I still can say, that it’s my favorite CMS.

 

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January 23 2017 2 23 /01 /January /2017 23:31

In a people-initiative Austrian people can show their discardment to TTIP, CETA and TISAToday on 23th January 2017, the people-initiatve (Volksbegehren) "against TTIP, CETA and TISA" is launched in Austria.
The 3 trans-atlantic "free trade agreements" for 2-3 years are under massive criticism from a myriad of sceptical organizations – and this to me absolutely justified.

 

It has been initiated by a group of SPÖ-politicians (Austrian social-democrats-party) from the federal-state of Lower-Austria. But even before the current initiative a massive front of opposition by several and very different political parties, trade-unions and other organizations was formed.
Even Frank Hensel, head of REWE-Österreich, the biggest food-retail-chain in Austria, has clearly positioned himself against TTIP.

 

Because among my English language blog's audience predominantly consist of non-Austrian people, which can not sign the petition, I am going to focus on explaining the situation here in my country in terms with the trans-atlantic free-trade-agreements.

 

Especially trans-national corporations and other big business in team with economically-liberal political-parties and other organizations are very much in favour of them.

 

In contrast most of the parliamentary and non-parliamentary opposition-parties, trade-unions, NGOs, most of alternative media and even SMBs (small & midsize business) firmly reject TTIP, CETA and TISA.
Their main-point of criticism are the so called „arbitration courts“. In fact these are no courts – though they are called so – but rather meeting in between nominated corporate-lawyers, who are making highly questionable deals in back-rooms – under circumvention of the democratic-legislation and jurisprudence.
And this corporate arbitration-regime can sue states to billions of Euros fines, when they lack of profits due to higher social- or environmental-standards of a certain country.

 

I do fully agree to this enormous threat to our countries, our democracies and our freedom. And that's why I sign the initiative and do recommend all my fellow-Austrian to do so as well.

 

Although people-initiative's results in Austria are not binding – even not, if more than half of our citizens sign it – gaining many people's support were a strong and very important signal in the public debate at exactly this point of time.
Because as early as in February 2017 the EU-parliament wants to decide about the future of CETA. And many citizens announcing their disagreement with the establishments point of view would give a strong push forward to all forces opposition limitless corporatocracy and would open the door for a fair global trading-system.

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January 13 2017 6 13 /01 /January /2017 02:35

Donald Trump won really interesting and polaring US-presidental-elections 2016The US presidential-election 2016 is now several weeks ago, but just because of the disemotionalisation related to this fact a a sober look at it's result now is possible.

And – though resulted by the fact, that I didn't have time, created my articles English version – the publication at this date very well fit's to the whole inauguration-process of Donald Trump, which will be finalized in exactly 1 week with the official ceremony.

 

My and Dirk Müllers short-review just in advance:

I don't know whether Donald Trump's policy will be good, but in any case he is very much more in our favour than Hillary Clinton, due to the sole reason of her brutal global-politics.
 

As Donald Trump has repeatedly announced, the fight against ISIS is on top of his agenda and a changeover of power in Syria is no priority for him. In addition he wants to reach out to Vladmir Putin and find peaceful cooperation with Russia.

Thus, there is hope for a more peaceful world.

 

Hillary Clinton in these elections – completely in contrast to the euphemistic image that mainstream-media painted – was THE establishment-candidate. She is a main architect of the bloody wars in Libya and Syria and through her plan to shoot down Russian airplanes in Syria she had risked a direct war mit Russia there – which could have escalated to Word-War-3.

Short-summary Republicans & Demokrats election-campaigns

  • In contrast to previous elections, where with Dennis Kucinich and Ron Paul 2 establishment-distant candidates dropped out pretty early in the primaries, in 2016 Bernie Sanders was in contention for nomination almost until the primarie's last round and Donald Trump even won and made the nomination as candidate at for the Republicans.

  • The pre-election campaign at the Republicans was eminently dirty.
    Finally Donald Trump clearly prevailed after a variety of personal below-the-beltline attacks between the party-internal rivals.

  • The situation at the Democrats for certain was not less dirty, but indeed different:
    Nomination for the presidential-race very quickly was a duel between favourite Hillary Clinton and underdog Bernie Sanders.
    And after a clear lead of Clinton at the beginning of the primaries, self-proclaimed Socialist Sanders always came closer to her in terms of convention-delegates and – only after several very dirty maneuvers from Hillary Clinton's environment and from the Democrats party-establishment – dropped out of the race.

  • Disembarking Bernie Sander later was one main-reason for Donald Trumps victory and Hillary Clintons defeat.
    Because Sanders supporters only partially voted for Clinton. Others however gave their vote Donald Trump, or voted for Jill Stein or, particularly like Susan Sarandon, even actively supported the Green-party's nominee.
    And other others stayed away from the election.

  • Not nominating Bernie Sanders in a twofold respect counter-productive.
    Not only that the party alienated so many of Sanders supporters, the Senator from Vermont generally would have had a good chance to win against Donald Trump in a general election.

Third-Parties, Independents and alternative-media

  • In contrast to the picture drawn by Establishment-media not only 2, but 31 (!) candidates, 29 of them candidates of the so-called "Third Parties" and independents ran for US-presidency.
    In case you shouldn't know: "Third Parties" are parties apart from the Republicans & Democrats. And through the highly unfair majority-election-system and through the media-landscape in the United States dominated by corporate media-juggernatus so far they unfortunately play only a minor-role.

  • Out of the mass of these alternative-candidates Libertarian Gary Johnson and Green Jill Stein definitely protrude.
    Candidates like Republican Evan McMullin and Darrell Castle of the "Constitution Party" have also played nationwide a certain role. Further candidates were however – no matter of their level of expertise and their concepts – only had some impact in certain Federal-States.

  • All of these candidates have in common that they have had almost no access to mainstream-media and it accordingly was extremely difficult for them to achieve the level of attention necessary for success.
    In 2016 things could have been totally different with a fair coverage of ALL candidates running in this elections: Because with Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump the 2 so far most unpopular major-party-candidates ever ran for presidency.

  • Of course Donald Trump was the main-profiteer of alternative-media coverage, this was 1 reason for his electoral victory.
    But for the 2nd part also the third-party and independent-candidates benefited of this. Though this time that had not been reflected in the elections result yet, but it's even highly likely, that Americans stronger turn to new political-forces on the regional and local-level.

  • And I have to strike a blow for the election-days coverage by „Russia Today“ (RT) – to be precise of RT-Americas coverage in English language (as RT is a global & multilingual network).
    The Russian news-channel dedicated the first part of his big election-broadcast to the "Third Parties" including Gary Johnson, Jill Stein, Ron Paul (former presidential-candidate for the Libertarians) and Ralph Nader (former presidential-candidate for the Greens).
    Co-host of the show and of Lindsay France was the Ex-Wrestler and Ex-Governor of Minnesota Jesse Ventura.

The Russian news channel has dedicated the first part of his major election broadcast the "Third Parties", including Gary Johnson, Jill Stein, Ron Paul (former presidential candidate for the Libertarian) and Ralph Nader (former presidential candidate for the Green).

Co-host of the show, the Ex-Wrestler and Ex-Governor of Minnesota Jesse Ventura was.

Final Words

In contrast to my thoughts from 2012, this presidental-election it was not irrelevant who wins.

This in turn significantly relates to the fact, that in these primaries 2 establishment-sceptical candidates (at leas let's hope they are) were in the race for nomination almost until the very end. And 1of them not only managed to win nomination, but made it to the election-victory.
 

Time will show how serious Donald Trump's establishment-criticism really is and how much he is comitted to the interestets of the people (an not certain cliques inside the establishment). However to me he is definitely better than Hillary Clinton.

Nevertheless I had preferred one of the third-party-candidates over Trump.
 

Alternative media anyway proved it's positive potential. And that's exactly why it's on top of the Establishment's hit-list. Under the narrative „Fake News“ alternative-media is intented to be curbed.

That by no means must happen and I am going to make my contribution, strengthening alternative-media and make it better known.

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December 31 2016 7 31 /12 /December /2016 16:43

50 years of Star-Trek in television is a remarkable for the whole mankindOn 8th September 2016 time has come: Star-Trek – or how is it called in German „Raumschiff Enterprise (Starship Enterprise) has celebrated its 50th anniversary. On 08. September 1966 the series was primarily aired in the United States. And though I haven't managed making my tribute on time, on the anniversary-day – this I just did in German – I wanted to write it this year also in English at any costs before the anniversary-year is over.

 

But let's go into medias res:

After a very mediocre start and it's end in 1969 the series saw an enormous popularity-boost in the 1970s - and is until today one of the historically most important television-series ever.

 

Up to now beside 7 (soon 8) television-series and so far 13 cinema-movies many computer- & video-games, books, Internet-media as well as countless franchise-products were created.
And the effect of the unique phenomenon „Star Trek“ goes far beyond it's core-function as an entertainment product into almost all areas of life.

Star Trek TOS (The original series) – the old Enterprise

Actually, the series was supposed to start already in 1964, at the time a pilot-movie (The cage) was filmed with mostly different crew. Captain at that time was Christopher Pike, portrayed by Jeffrey Hunter. And Spock has played a rather minor role.

 

Since this concept was too intellectual and too little action-packed for TV-station NBC, the series creator Gene Roddenberry revised script and crew. In 1966 William Shatner got the role of Captain Kirk – and together with the Vulcan Spock (Leonard Nimoy) and ship's doctor Dr. Leonard McCoy (DeForest Kelley) the core team of the series had been formed.

 

The series itself I see quite ambivalent.
On the one hand, it stands for values such as tolerance, openness for the New and enlightened spirit of research.
On the other hand at the same time also for 1960s- and Western-mentality: Hitting & shooting BEFORE thinking and a Captain, no woman can resist. In addition also the scripts are partial shallow, gappy and implausible.

 

However the series has great charm and appeal:
The blend of yearning for the space and for a positive future paired with moral values and action but also trashy elements are simply fascinating - as Mr. Spock would say.

Star Trek TNG (The Next Generation) – the new Enterprise

Although there 3 further ships with the name Enterprise and a round of 80 years between the Original Enterprise NCC-1701 and the NCC-1701-D, „Next Generation“ is the 2nd real series in the Star Trek universe.
The Next-Generation of 1987 in many aspects is different than the original series. And – in my eyes – in almost all respects better. It starts with the Captain: While predecessor Kirk is a swashbuckler and a womaniser, successor Picard is a mature intellectual and in addition for many people a moral-authority.

 

Generally TNG is very well done, thrilling, action-packed and morally demanding.
This great composition set a new benchmark hereafter created a boom of fiction (sci-fi, fantasy, mystery) in the early to mid of 1990s and to me still belongs to the 3 best science-fiction-series ever.

Star Trek DS9 (Deep Space Nine) – dark, stationary and captivating

Even before the Next-Generation moved from television to cinema in 1994, in 1993 it's successor Deep-Space-Nine started. And trek-series number 3 kept the extremely high level of Picard and Co, but yet made a lot of things differently:

 

For the first time the Star played Trek not on a starship, but on a space-station. Commander Sisko was a single father. For the first time a big war was shown in the Star-Trek-universe and in general the whole series was set atmospheric dark

 

Still today particularly outstanding in DS9 are the many and well elaborated supporting-characters and especially the long, ample, interrelated story-arcs. Therefore, together with the TNG, and Babylon 5, to me it belongs to the 3 best all-time SF-series.

Star Trek VOY (Voyager) – far away from home

Due to the success particularly of Next-Generation, but also of Deep-Space-Nine, the studio Paramount in 1995 decided to start a 2nd trek-series, parallel to DS9. To prevent these 2 series, ongoing contemporaneously in the same serial-universe getting in each others way, the Voyager was „shipped“ to the other end of our galaxy, to the 75-years away delta-quadrant.

 

Voyager is definitely a good science-fiction-series that is atmospherically much brighter than Deep-Space-Nine and in many ways similar to Nex-Gen. Apart from some wear and tear – stories are told again, we already know from Star Trek – compared to TNG & DS9 it often is made in a rather lacklustre way.

 

Voyager initiated both, the peak of the Star-Trek-mania in 1996, but also it's big downturn around the year 2000. Nevertheless me just like many other fans definitely don't want to miss the 4th trek-series.

Star Trek ENT (Enterprise) – the vanguard as rearguard

After Star Trek's success significantly subsided in the Voyager-era, in 2001 the series creators decided to completely reboot the franchise. And so 5th series "Enterprise" (ENT) does no longer play in the 24th century like TNG, DS9 & VOY, but in the 22nd century about 100 years before the original Enterprise (TOS).

 

The series itself, similar to Voyager, achieved a good overall-level, is well made and exiting. Nevertheless it's unable taking it up with the best Star-Trek-series and quality is highly viable. In my opinion the series highlight is season no. 3, dealing for 1 whole year with the well elaborated Xindi story-arc.

 

Enterprise, among other issues, deserves criticism especially for it's partly violent and sometimes even unethical approach of it's characters – something for certain influenced by 9/11.

 

However, it is exciting to see what happened in Star Trek BEFORE the "United Federation of Planets" (UFP) creation.

Wrap-up to Star-Trek in television

I don't want to hide the fact, that in addition to the mentioned 5 series (with real people) with Star Trek TAS (The Animated Series) also a short-lived cartoon-series created in the 1970s exists.

 

After the true start in 1966 Star Trek has managed something that – with exception of Sherlock Holmes and James Bond – probably no other entertainment-product ever has: To remain popular for 50 years and to successfully continue its history in cinema as well as (again from 2017) in television.
And 100% deserves to be!

 

Star Trek is exciting, fascinating and at the same time morally and intellectually demanding. Thus all the best for the future, perhaps for another 50 years!

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June 8 2016 4 08 /06 /June /2016 22:45

Star-Trek celebrates 50th anniversary soon2016 is the year the first USS Enterprise-NCC and the entire Star-Trek-universe celebrate the ultimate anniversary: The probably most influential science-fiction-series ever gets 50 years old. And today it's exactly 3 months until anniversary-day.

 

And not enough the 50th anniversary:

With the 3rd movie of the current timeline, introduced by J.J.Abrams, and next year with an upcoming television-series on CBS really a lot is just happening in the trek-universe this years.

However, in 2016 I've posted not a single Blog entry yet.

 

But it's quite simple:

The 1st half of the year 2016 in terms of entertainment-issues I have focused on the "Life-on-Mars" and "Ashes to ashes" serial-universe.

In the 2nd half of the year however I will create 3-4 entries about Star-Trek:

  1. On 8th of September on the occasion of 50 years of Star-Trek, of course, an extensive appreciation of both, the original series wit Kirk & Spock as well as Star-Trek as a whole.

  2. Almost 2 weeks later, on 20th of September Trek series no. 5, Enterprise, celebrates its 15th anniversary.

  3. Then it is important to shed light on the different political aspects of Star Trek.

  4. And maybe I'll make another article, for example, about new series upcoming in 2017.

So, science-fiction-buddies and especially all Trekkies/Trekkers can look forward on some new content in my blog.

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May 25 2016 4 25 /05 /May /2016 22:55

BBC-series Ashes to Ashes making it's debut in the German-speaking Free-TV4 ½ months ago my favorite series of the 2000s celebrated its 10th anniversary: "Life on Mars" from the UK, named the same as the title track song from the great and unfortunately already deceased David Bowie.

"Life on Mars" has got a successor: The BBC-series "Ashes to Ashes", produced from 2008 to 2010 – and also with an epononymous Bowie-song with the same name.
And after it had been aired in German pay-TV-station „FOX“ 2013, now it finally is also aired in German free-TV.

"Ashes to Ashes" is about the police psychologist Alex Drake, who has investigated the death of Sam Tyler, the main-protagonist in the predecessor-serie „Life on Mars“ and the events, that happened to him.
And very similar to Sam after a nearly fatal accident (rather attempted murder) also she falls into a coma and finds herself in the same (apparent-)universe in the year 1981 again with the same people as Tyler.
And also she obviously has to do something specific there, connected to her parents death, which occured at that time.

Concretely „Ashes to Ashes“ is aired since 24th of May 2016, every Tuesday and Saturday at 22.25h and 00.05h on the fledgling station eoTV.
„eo“ stands for „european originals“. And the Station isn't just being called so, it exclusively aires European movies and TV-series.
And anyone who isn't able or doesn't want to watch the episodes live, for example has the option to re-watch them in the media-library on demand for a couple of weeks.

True to the Motto "better late than never" to me it's a great thing that this – probably also great – European series is now also available here in the „German-speaking world“. And for certain I'm going to watch it with pleasure!

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