The Widdershins

Archive for October 17th, 2013

Good Thursday, Widdershins.  Hopefully, by the time that this post goes up tomorrow, there will be some resolution to the current  fiscal crisis du jour, but I am nonetheless impelled to give homage to the spectacle of the House Repubs belting out their version of “Amazing Grace” in the hallowed halls of Congress on Tuesday.  Doubtless, they were either mourning the demise of their latest plan, or they had just seen most recent poll numbers.

“Amazing Grace” is a beautiful folk hymn, deeply rooted in the South, It is sung in every church , in every denomination.   It was written by the Englishman John Newton, who was a slave trader until he experienced a religious awakening. He then wrote the hymn as an atonement for his previous activities.  How sad, yet somehow fitting, that it was co-opted was a group who should be remorseful for their contemptuous treatment of their less fortunate brethren.  Even more fitting was that the hymn was proudly led by a Rep whose real job is that of funeral director,as many associate “Amazing Grace” with burials.

I have been treated to the hymn sung by gospel choirs, both lily-white and African-American.  I have heard it sung by choirs accompanied by pipe organs, as well as in little churches backed by piano, guitar, or even a capella in a tiny Primitive Baptist church.  I have heard Judy Collins sing it in a grand auditorium, and have head a lone piper play the strained melody at a graveside,   If my instructions are followed, I too shall be “piped down” to “Amazing Grace” as my forbearers have always been.

“AMAZING GRACE, HOW SWEET THE SOUND”

The song is sweet, with simple repetition and a melody that almost anyone can do well.  It isn’t that the Repubs sounded all that awful.,.  I guess that the problem was cognitive rather than harmonic dissonance.

THAT SAVED A WRETCH LIKE ME”

Oh, you got the “wretch” part right, but it will take something really amazing to get y’all out of this one gracefully.  Methinks that the good ship Graceful had sailed.

“I ONCE WAS LOST, BUT NOW AM FOUND”

Yep, you lost the last election, and found that to be immensely irritating.  We get it.  Now, can you pull yourselves together and try really hard not to allow the country to collapse?

“WAS BLIND, BUT NOW I SEE.”

Hmmm…….blinded by ambition?  Blinded by the light?  Blind-sided by reality?  You do see that, don’t you?

I really, sincerely hope that this post is seriously outdated by the “great deal” being closed to the satisfaction of all concerned, but I think that we would need more than a sprinkle of pixie dust to pull that one off in the long run. What I expect is another can-kicker of a deal rather than any cogent plan.  At least the proposed funding limits of mid-January might get us through the holiday period unscathed,  Then, we can ring out the old, and ring in the same ol’-same ol’.  In the meantime, enjoy “Amazing Grace” as it should be sung.

Consider this an open thread.  Hopefully we’ll have lots of other things – and much more interesting things – to discuss.

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