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Barack Obama is a hoops guy. Barack Obama knows how to score points.



I'm grading his performance on suggestions I made in October 2010:

1. Introduce the idea of Sherlock Holmes in talking about the War on Terror. Get people ready for a coming move from reliance of military might. (A Three Pointer.) B+

2. Beat up on criminal bankers and their kith and kin. It is our money they are taking on the train to New Canaan, Greenwich and Stamford. (Slam dunk.) C-

3. Get specific about regulatory controls. Talk about leverage ratios. Say what's been done and what's needed. No general statements about Wall Street Reform. People don't believe it's happened yet. (Several lay ups needed.) B-

4. Propose contests. For example, a contest to design or create from existing areas 21st century neighborhoods of 5-10,000 persons. Reduced vehicular traffic, safety and security, connect everything with pedestrian ways, include many "squares" and plazas and small parks. Talk about safe places for kids to play. (Lay up.) D

5. Tax on all market transactions and scrub mandatory insurance purchases no one likes. (Three pointer.) F

6. Train up a class of driving professionals who can do minor emergency repairs and have basic paramedical skills. A new profession. Millions of jobs. (Lay up.) D+

7. Insert David Plouffe into the White House. Talk to him daily. Heed him. (Consistent scoring) A-

8. Get Bill Clinton to fund a careful study of the relationship between philanthropic endeavors and social progress. D

9. Institute simple global security measures such as a required super-secure credit card for all air travel. No cash ticket buys. A free pass for passengers who pose no threat. (Three pointer if done right.) D

10. Oil will go back to $100 a barrel. Again, a line of green initiatives that make sense in language people can understand. (No scores but needed.) B


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"Sto Perigiali" One of the Surpassingly Best Tunes Theodorakis Has Written

A Setting for a Poem "Denial" Beloved by the Greek People by the Nobel Prize Winning Poet Giorgos Seferis

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dhk0ckaCxDI
The remarkable video at the link above is of a performance of "Sto perigiali" Mario Frangoulis and Mikis Theodorakis in 2001.

Frangoulis and Theodorakis are joined by musicians, including two bouzouki players, and a very large audience that is completely familiar with the words. The audience joins in at Frangoulis' prompt.

This is my very favorite Theodorakis melody. Those who know Theodorakis only for his "Zorba" music are in for a treat. When I was in Athens in 1966, for a short period of study with Constantinos Doxiadis, I knew nothing of Theodorakis. But about five years later, my friend Irene Vassos sang "Sto perigiali" to us. I have never gotten the tune out of my mind.

Later, when Irene joined our group to form a travelling company performing "New Rain", I learned to pick out a …

Stephen C. Rose Bio

Stephen C. Rose (1936-) was born in New York City and raised there. He currently lives there. He was educated at Trinity, Exeter, Williams and Union Theological Seminary. He served in the Student Interracial Ministry in Nashville. He founded and edited the prize-winning Renewal Magazine in Chicago and studied with C. A. Doxiadis in Athens. His first books "The Grass Roots Church" and "Who's Killing The Church" established him as a prominent critic of American Protestantism and American religion. He was and remains a civil rights activist. He has interviewed and done in depth pieces on Saul Alinsky and Martin Luther King, Jr. He won awards for editorial courage and for two documentary films. He has written and published many songs and musical works including "We Are All Americans". During the late 90s and early 2000s he worked for UN agencies, most recently editing CHOICES Magazine at UNDP. Since 2000 he has written several books for distribution via K…