The Kink’s “Money and Corruption” and “I’m Your Man” – Mr. Flash as Political Huckster

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“Oh God how I love this land” (Mr. Flash)

Why does that sentiment sound familiar?

“Money & Corruption” and “I’m Your Man” are another great highlight of the Kink’s rock opera “Preservation, Act 2” wherein we see that the people were swindled by the political savvy of the deceitful and greedy Mr. Flash. Continue reading

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The Kinks and the Confession of Mr. Flash

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I always loved The Kinks non-critically acclaimed “Preservation” albums, acts 1 and 2. The two songs “Flash’s Dream (The Final Elbow)” and “Flash’s Confession,” toward the end of “Act 2” were thematically and musically a high point. Ray’s singing is amazing as usual, and I believe he is not given the credit of being one of the greatest rock singers of all time. Brother Dave’s guitar is also wonderfully prominent in the “Confession.”

The video posted below by Gerard van Calcar was well done with some appropriate images, and thankfully he combined both songs parts together. Continue reading

Blaise Pascal and the “Summum Bonum” (the highest good)

sketch of pascal © 2007 Thomas Christensen

sketch of pascal © 2007 Thomas Christensen

“All men seek happiness. This is without exception. Whatever different
means they employ, they all tend to this end. The cause of some going
to war, and of others avoiding it, is the same desire in both, attended
with different views. The will never takes the least step but to this
object. This is the motive of every action of every man, even of those
who hang themselves.”

Aristotle held a very similar view over 1000 years prior to Pascal, along with Eudoxus, who was probably the originator of the formula expressed by Aristotle:

Every art or applied science and every systematic investigation, and similarly every action and choice, seem to aim at some good; the good, therefore, has been well defined as that at which all things aim… (Nicomachean Ethics, I.1 – see 10.2 for his discussion of Eudoxus).

For the sake of brevity, I have posted a video by Christian author Randy Alcorn which present’s Pascal’s answer to the question of what is our highest good. I will post in a comment some lengthier excerpts from Pascal for those interested.

If it seems good to you, please feel free to comment!

BMC @ Manifest Propensity, 2014

Soren Kierkegaard on “equality in loving” which is the love that can change the world – “Works of Love” 9 (preferential love, part 2)

works of love

In this post we will consider Kierkegaard’s positive view of the duty of loving our neighbor. Continue reading

“Manifest Propensity” Explained

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“Manifest Destiny”

This painting (circa 1872) by John Gast called American Progress, is an allegorical representation of the modernization of the new west. Here Columbia, a personification of the United States, leads civilization westward with American settlers, stringing telegraph wire as she sweeps west; she holds a school book. The different stages of economic activity of the pioneers are highlighted and, especially, the changing forms of transportation.

The purpose of this post is to explain why this blog is called “Manifest Propensity.” I have said a few things in this regard, but have never offered a full explanation. The name comes from two sources. The first source you may have guessed due to the verbal similarity. Continue reading

Bob Dylan’s “Political World” – On infidels, the politics of force, and General Clausewitz

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General Carl von Clausewitz 1780-1831

Bob Dylan, in the songs “Political World”  and “Sweetheart Like You,” and in an excerpt from “Chronicles Volume 1,” presents a fairly negative view of our political world. But I find his negative assessment to be difficult to argue with. Continue reading