Monday, March 8, 2021

A Watercolor of the Hameau de la Reine

 From East of the Sun, West of the Moon, via Vive la Reine: "A watercolor of the hameau de la reine by Jobst Riegel, 1875-1876... This is part of series of paintings commissioned by Louis II of Bavaria, who intended to use the pieces as inspiration for the New Herrenchiemsee Palace."


The Louvre Is Undergoing a Major Renovation

 From Travel and Leisure:

Since Oct. 30, 2020, the museum has been shut down to the public as part of the nation's efforts to combat the spread of the coronavirus. While its doors are shuttered, the Associated Press (AP) reported, those once overwhelmed museum workers are getting to do something they never thought they'd be able to do: renovate.

"We're taking advantage of the museum's closure to carry out a number of major works, speed up maintenance operations, and start repair works that are difficult to schedule when the museum is operating normally," Laurent le Guedart, the Louvre's Architectural Heritage and Gardens Director, told the AP.

As the AP noted, some 250 museum employees are hard at work adding new security systems, cleaning sculptures, checking inventories, checking over artifacts, reorganizing entrances, and conducting other necessary restorations to areas like the Egyptian Wing and the Grande Galerie. This way, when the museum does finally reopen, it will be like a brand-new experience for visitors. (Read more.)


Corporate Wokeness Has Gone Too Far

 From The Federalist:

Results from a national poll released Friday found 65 percent of Americans think corporate America is “taking political correctness too far.”

The study surveyed 1,098 adults about their thoughts on a range of high-profile actions corporations have taken recently to appease left-wing activists, including Hasbro dropping the “Mr.” from its Mr. Potato Head toy, Disney closing down popular rides at its theme parks that activists claimed were “racist,” and Lucasfilm’s firing of actress Gina Carano. On Thursday, eBay began banning the sales of Dr. Seuss books.

The study was conducted by Survey Monkey and Public Opinion Strategies and commissioned by The Daily Wire between Feb. 26 and March 3, following a storm of recent cancel mob moves, such as Disney placing warning labels on “The Muppets.”

Nearly 80 percent of respondents believe toymaker Hasbro’s changing “Mr. Potato Head” to “Potato Head” is “silly.”

When initially asked, 58 percent of respondents said they opposed Disney’s decision to fire Carano over social media posts. After being shown the actual post that resulted in her termination, however, 72 percent said they didn’t agree with the firing, including a majority of liberals and Democrats and 70 percent of Disney fans.

During an interview with The Federalist, Carano said she first became vocal about reportedly touchy or taboo subjects “because I feel like there is a large group of people that were being silenced this year and being forced to play this game of wokeism or whatever it is.” The cancel mob made sure to punish her for daring to speak freely and challenging the status quo. (Read more.)


Red Wine: A Very Healthy Drink

 From Nutrition and Anti-Aging Health News Daily:

You've probably heard that red wine can be a very healthy drink option, but you most likely only heard about generic benefits of the antioxidants and resveratrol in red wine. But here's another MAJOR reason below why red wine in moderation (1-2 glasses per day max) can be a super healthy part of your routine.  I personally have really grown to enjoy having a glass of red wine with dinner about 4-5 days per week.

A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (Am J Clin Nutr. 2012;95:1323-1334) reported that people who drank 2 glasses of red wine per day (dry red wine, not sugary dessert wines) had higher levels of beneficial bacteria in their gut and lower levels of pathogenic bad bacteria in their gut. This is great news as you know from reading this newsletter how vastly important your gut flora balance is to everything from your digestion, immunity, metabolism, skin health , and much more.

The study concluded that while red wine consumption decreased pathogenic bacteria in the gut, it actually had a prebiotic effect in the gut in that it supported the growth and colonies of healthy gut microbes which protect your health. (Read more.)


Sunday, March 7, 2021

Miniature of Woman Thought to be Marie-Antoinette


From East of the Sun, West of the Moon.


Eduard Habsburg on Hungary’s Family Policy Successes

 From The American Conservative:

Eduard Habsburg has served as Hungary’s ambassador to the Holy See and Sovereign Military Order of Malta since 2015. “I am unusual as an ambassador in that I have done many other things—TV work, animation producer, screenwriter, bishop’s spokesman—before, much to my surprise, being nominated as ambassador by the Hungarian government,” Habsburg told me.

In Austria he is still known popularly as Archduke Eduard, and the Habsburgs maintain their royal bloodlines—his wife is Baroness Maria Theresia von Gudenus, with whom he has six children. It is an ancient family with a very current role in 21st-century politics: “I had visions of diplomatic life that can best be summed up as ‘standing around at boring cocktails, holding a glass, and always having to say nice things.’ Boy, was I ever wrong.” Habsburg, who tweets his thoughts on a wide range of issues daily, is a staunch advocate of the pro-life and pro-family policies of Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán. Habsburg is a devout Catholic and Orbán is a Calvinist, but the two agree on much.

As a diplomat, Habsburg represents one of the European Union’s most controversial countries. Joe Biden called Hungary and Poland “totalitarian regimes”; historian Anne Applebaum took aim at Orbán and his allies in her 2020 book Twilight of Democracy; and mainstream media outlets regularly speak of Hungary in ominous tones. This largely stems from Hungary’s social and cultural conservatism, which is offensive to many progressive and liberal journalists and commentators.

“With Hungary you are facing the rare beast of a country where a conservative government has been ruling for three uninterrupted periods—with a two thirds majority,” Habsburg told me. “We all know that a great part of the journalists in the so-called Western world pride themselves on being slightly (or strongly) ‘left of the middle.’ These two realities must necessarily clash, even if we had a prime minister who would speak and act like a mix between Gandhi and Martin Luther King—which Viktor Orbán doesn’t.”

Habsburg says that the media interprets Orbán for the wider public. And since “Hungarian is a unique language that very few people speak themselves,” most people “have to rely on sources inside or outside Hungary that translate material about Hungary. And many of those sources have, let us say, peculiar or strongly political points of view.” The reality is also that “Hungarians don’t like to chisel away at a statement for hours until it is politically correct but like to communicate in a clear and direct way without taking into account how things might be perceived in other countries.” (Read more.)


Critical Race Theory Is A Classic Communist Divide-And-Conquer Tactic

 From The Federalist:

Doused with critical race theory, the Black Lives Matter organization and its related Antifa-infused mobs are organized for the same purposes as all cult recruits: to recruit more people and to implement the desire to divide and conquer. The phenomenon can be seen as they surround people in vehicles or restaurants, demanding their victims raise a fist and recite slogans under the intense intimidation and implications of violence.

Indeed, agitators who deploy critical race theory have zero interest in ending racism. Instead, they’ve made essentially the same point over and over again: Racism is an unsolvable problem. If you’ve been tainted as “white,” there’s nothing you can do about it. You are eternally a racist, especially if you don’t believe you are.

Robin D’Angelo explains it all in her best-selling book “White Fragility.” Your only option is the cultist’s option: submit to your critical race theory overlords, then recruit others to do the same. If, however, you’re a black person who disagrees with all of this, well, then, “You ain’t black.”

As with all forms of identity politics and intersectionality, critical race theory stokes divisions between people where few or none existed before. It’s all about relational aggression and predatory alienation.

Let’s look at a perfect example of this process, a parallel case from Soviet history. As peasant farmers tended to be overwhelmingly religious, traditional, and family-oriented, the Bolshevik government hated them with a fiery passion. Increasing the acrimony further, the peasants resisted giving up their family-run farms—a roadblock to the Soviet leadership’s desire to exercise complete control over the nation’s food supply.

To collectivize agriculture, Soviet leader Joseph Stalin devised a plan to stir up hostilities among the peasants where resentments had never existed before. As would be the case later with Mao’s Red Guard (and today’s radical statue-toppling, Molotov-cocktail-throwing radicals), the Soviets used mobs of youth to do the dirty work.

The communist youth league, known as the Komsomol, went into villages to propagandize and incite divisions, turning formerly peaceful neighbors against one another. In his book “The Whisperers: Private Life in Stalin’s Russia,” Orlando Figes describes the situation:

The villagers had never heard such propaganda in the past, and many were impressed by the long words used by the leaders of the Komsomol. At these meetings, the villagers were told that they belonged to three mutually hostile classes: the poor peasants, who were the allies of the proletariat, the middle peasants, who were neutral, and the rich or ‘kulak’ peasants, who were its enemies. The names of all the peasants in these different classes were listed on a board outside the village school.

This process is eerily similar to the way critical race theory — and all identity politics — has been applied in America. You can see the same three divisions: victims, oppressors, and those who might save themselves by becoming “allies” of the victims.

Note the reference to the Komsomol using impressive “long words.” Today our miseducated youth are easily impressed by new terms such as “systemic racism,” “intersectionality,” and “white fragility.” Finally, the wokesters identify and condemn those marked as oppressors — doxing and canceling them by name — in a written list of names posted in the village. Today such work is helped along by media and Big Tech. (Read more.)


Mystery of Four-horned Goats and Sheep


Some members of the Bovidae family have additional horns. In fact, a few local breeds of sheep, which have been selected by many generations of breeders, are known for their multiple horns. Some goats may spontaneously develop an extra pair of horns as well, particularly in the Alps. Evidence of the existence of these animals, known as polycerate, goes back several centuries, for example, the transfer of a four-horned goat, from the town of Bulle in Switzerland to the Queen's farm in Versailles in 1786—requested by Queen Marie-Antoinette—is duly recorded. However, the genetic causes of this morphological anomaly remained unknown, until now. (Read more.)