Friday, February 15, 2019

Harmony Explosion 2018 (1) - Gone Too Soon

Source: Bit.Tube | Harmony Explosion 2018 (1) - Gone Too Soon

MacAddict (February 1997)

MacAddict (February 1997)

Vintage Photos - Oestreicher (40)

See the previous post in this series here. Feel free to skip the quoted intro text if you have read it before.
I had the opportunity to pick up a huge batch of slides recently. These are pictures spanning from as early as the late 1940s to as late as the early 1990s (maybe earlier and/or later but these are what I have sampled so far). These came to me second (third?) hand but the original source was a combination of estate sales and Goodwill. There are several thousand...maybe as many as 10,000. I will be scanning some from time to time and posting them here for posterity.
Apparently, getting your pictures processed as slides used to be a fairly common thing but it was a phenomenon I missed out on. However, my Grandfather had a few dozen slides (circa late 1950s) that I acquired after he died. That along with some negatives is what prompted me to buy a somewhat decent flatbed scanner that could handle slides and negatives (an Epson V600). That was the most money I was willing to spend on one anyway. It can scan up to four slides at a time with various post-processing options and does a decent enough job. The scanner has been mostly idle since finishing that task but now there is plenty for it to do.
This set continues a rather large batch of slides that originally came from an estate sale and appear to have belonged to a locally well known photographer from the Spokane Washington area and later Northern Idaho named Leo Oestreicher. He was known for his portrait and landscape photography and especially for post cards. He career started in the 1930s and he died in 1990. These slides (thousands of them) contain a lot of landscape and portrait photos but also a lot of photos from day to day life and various vacations around the world. Here's an article on him from 1997 which is the only info I have found on him: Many of these slides had the date they were processed (presumably) stamped or printed on them (month and year). I've found that in cases where I could verify the date, either because a more specific date was hand written or there was something to specifically date the photo in the photo itself, that this date has typically been the same month the photos were taken. In other words, I expect that in MOST cases these photos were taken relatively near the processing date. No doubt there are some exceptions. All of these photos are winter landscapes. The first picture in this set is undated but is labelled "Lil Hammer". Perhaps Lillehammer is meant? Otherwise I have no idea where this is. The rest of the photos are labelled "Pleasant Prarie" and dated January 1957. There is a Pleasant Prarie in Wisconsin but again, I am not at all certain that is where these were taken. Click on one of the images or the link below to also see versions processed with color restoration and Digital ICE which is a hardware based dust and scratch remover, a feature of the Epson V600 scanner I am using. There are also versions processed with the simpler dust removal option along with color restoration.
Lil Hammer
Pleasant Prarie - 1/57
Pleasant Prarie - 1/57
Pleasant Prarie - 1/57

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Says She Opposes Capitalism. A Recently Taken Photo Suggests Otherwise

There are many who speak loudly against capitalism, all the while still enjoying its benefits. To illustrate this point, just look at Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez texting from her iPhone, wearing a Movado watch, and drinking a Starbucks coffee. A democratic socialist, who thinks of capitalism as an immoral system, seems to enjoy the goods provided by big corporations. It is not only Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, however; this is common behavior in Western societies.


This behavior derives from the confusion between political ideology and practical politics. Political ideology is a theoretical framework of how society should work, whereas practical politics is the actual implementation of these ideas in the real world. Because of this confusion, people fall into two fallacies. First, they focus on ideological principles rather than practicalities. Second, they judge policies by their intentions rather than their results.
Starting with the first fallacy, take the example of the term “capitalism.” Countries such as the US, Canada, and Sweden are, in principle, capitalist countries, despite the fact that they differ tremendously in terms of economic and social policies. Nevertheless, people view “capitalism” as something negative and universal in its definition and applications.

The majority thinks of capitalism as it was perceived in the 19th century; a system associated with the unrestrained power of big corporations and the exploitation of the working class. That’s why many free-market advocates, in order to distinguish capitalism from this negative connotation, use other terms, such as free-market capitalism, crony capitalism, etc.

A survey conducted by the Harvard Kennedy School showed that most Americans aged 18 to 29 don’t support capitalism while not supporting socialism, either. Specifically, 42 percent of young Americans support capitalism, and 33 percent support socialism.

While, in principle, capitalism is related to private property, voluntary exchange, operation for profit, and free markets, it is not perceived as such. According to another poll, the vast majority of people tend to agree with the statement, “Most people are better off in a free market economy, even though some people are rich and some are poor.” Although people disagree with capitalism, they seem to agree with the results it produces.
The second fallacy comes through judging policies and programs by their intentions rather than their results. The famous saying “That wasn’t real communism” finds its roots in this particular fallacy. In contrast to Nazism, an ideology associated with racism and hatred, communism was presented by Marx and Engels as a goal for an ideal society where everyone would be equal. Marx described this society with the famous slogan: “From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs!’’ with socialism being the transition to communism.

Based on this premise, the crimes and failures of communist regimes are discarded because they don’t fit with the ideal society Marx described. Political assassinations, forced labor camps, famines, and mass killings are thought of as not real communism and disregarded or overlooked by modern socialists. Once again, political ideology is confused with practical politics.

Political ideologies often lead us to fallacies and false conclusions. I suppose that even if Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez read this article, she probably wouldn’t change her views on capitalism. Nonetheless, if someone tells you they don’t like capitalism (and they are not wearing a hammer and sickle cockade), ask them what exactly they disagree with. In the end, they might just agree with you.

This article was reprinted from Speak Freely.

Evangelos Andreou
Evangelos Andreou is a student of Political Science at Panteion University and Economics at the American College of Greece. He is also a Local Coordinator at European Students for Liberty.

This article was originally published on Read the original article.