Friday, November 03, 2017

America’s true religion is itself




Photo by The New York Tribune, dated 12 September 1915. The Bellamy salute is the salute described by Francis Bellamy (1855–1931) to accompany the American Pledge of Allegiance, which he had authored. During the period when it was used with the Pledge of Allegiance, it was sometimes known as the “flag salute”. It was officially replaced by the hand-over-heart salute when Congress amended the Flag Code on December 22, 1942.
The average school year is 180 days* out of 365, or 49% of the year. Over 12 years (180 days X 12), that’s 2,160 days of school. That’s 2,160 times you have been “taught to” / forced to / brainwashed to / obligated to swear an oath / swear yourself to / “pledge allegiance” to a flag and the republic that flag represents. You have, whether you knew what you were doing or not, sworn yourself to the flag of the United States and sworn yourself to its government 2,160 times. Dwell upon that for a moment.

Now, most places or schools you go to don’t play the national anthem every day, but you’re constantly exposed to it, especially through sports activities both at school and on TV throughout the year. I’m going to focus only on sports for this example, since it’s the most common. Let’s say that in a year you watch 52 games total at school and on television, which is one a week and not unreasonable. Over your 12 years of school (52 X 12), that’s 624 times you’ve heard the national anthem and watched people stand with their hand over their chests, venerating it, singing it, been taught to or forced to stand and put your hand on your chest for it yourself, and even taught it and to venerate it and respect it at school. Think about that for a moment.

Let’s say your family are religious practitioners and their religion, as is most often the case, meets once a week for mass, preaching, praying, scripture and other religious teaching and related activities. As with the national anthem example, you’ve been to church 52 times a year for 12 years, so it comes out the same at 624 times throughout your 12 school years. Put that into perspective for a moment.
You have experienced the national anthem in all its veneration and glory the same amount of times you’ve experienced your religion in all its veneration and glory. So which do you serve and which are you programmed to follow? You might answer that they are not incompatible, and that you’ve sworn yourself to God and your chosen religion. That’s fair enough, but you’ve actually and literally sworn yourself to the flag and to the government it represents exactly 2,160 times in those 12 years. How many times have you sworn yourself to your god and religion in that time? Just in terms of practice alone, (2,160–624) you’ve venerated the flag and the country 1,536 more times than you have openly and physically venerated your religion, and that’s without adding the 624 times of the national anthem, which returns the number back to 2,160 MORE times to the country.

“America” or more accurately, the United States of America, is a religion in itself. It’s our true religion, with its corresponding celebrity saints, which represent what we do or should aspire to be: rich and famous. Rich is the most important of all, though, because we are all obligated in our American religion to worship money, those who have it, and the acquisition of it. This is why Trump, who has built himself as a symbol of money, could convince otherwise reasonable people to vote for him in spite of their reservations about his character.


Trump is the perfect President. He’s the president America created, one who relentlessly pursues the personal acquisition of money and who constantly talks about the U.S. being the best at everything and making America great. He is the gold token of our religion. He is our symbol of greatness and success, a celebrity who is rich, famous and can get away with anything. He is the preacher who says that what we’re doing is the best, period. America is the best, period. Sound familiar? ;)

True or not, we revel in that. We love to use terms like, “leader of the free world”, “greatest country in the world”, “the only superpower”, amongst others. We hear them from our representatives (preachers / disciples), from TV shows (hymns?), even in some of our churches. Our focus is always on us and how great we are, while everyone else can only wish they were us. Everyone else wants to destroy us because we’re so great. Our American religious programming has us worshiping the country and punishing those that dare question it, its values, or its symbols. God bless America and NO PLACE ELSE.

We spend so much of our time trying to convince ourselves and everyone else about how great we are, that we leave no time to realize that perhaps, we’re not that great, and in many areas, never were. If we spent half the time we spend sucking our own dicks on actually trying to become as great as we say we are, we’d be great by now, but it’s more important to punish those who criticize our religion than actually listen to their grievances, analyze their merit, and if valid, try to fix them.
"Vietnam had a huge influence in our religious devotion to ourselves. Losing the war brought great insecurity to the nation and we’ve been compensating for it ever since."
God forbid someone protests the anthem, the pledge, or any of the tenets of our religion of greatness, or worse, dares to question our religion, for then the full weight of our worshipers shall cast fire and brimstone down upon them through Twitter and every other outlet at their disposal. How dare they criticize our religious symbols of greatness? How dare they “petition the Government for a redress of grievances” as outlined in the Constitution of the “Republic for which it stands”?

It’s true we’re great at many things, but we’re not so great at others (here’s looking at you healthcare, treatment of our colonies, ahem, “territories”, equality, etc.). We’ve done terrible things throughout the world and though we claim to worship the law, we only honor it when it applies to other countries and not to our own. We’re quick to mention the Geneva convention when it’s our soldiers on the line, but not when we’re violating that same convention with others. We expect the world to respect and honor our greatness, enraged when seeing others desecrate our symbols, but don’t really care about treading on those of others.

The obsession with these symbols is relatively recent, most of them officially adopted within the last hundred years. The Pledge of Allegiance, originally written in 1892 (without “under God”) by a Christian socialist who wanted to instill loyalty to the United States in children, was officially recognized by Congress on June 22nd, 1942.
“I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”
 — 1942 Pledge of Allegiance
Congress added the “under God” in 1954 thanks to a push by the Knights of Columbus, cementing the divine nature of the U.S. itself in the minds of every American schooled since. The national anthem was made official by Congress in 1931, having competed with other songs of the era, like “My Country, ’Tis of Thee” for popularity during official events.

During the (baseball) World Series of 1918, the military band that played during the 7th inning played the song, uplifting everyone’s spirits, which were affected by World War I. Club owners saw this and how it brought people into the stands, so they decided to play it for the rest of the series and for special events. It didn’t become standard fare until post-World War II when the expensive band stopped being necessary as recordings could be played over loudspeakers. The games had become venues for patriotism.

--- Post continues after the jump ---

Support bNowhere & Franco Esteve's work while protecting your privacy with NordVPN



---- Post continues here ---

Vietnam had a huge influence in our religious devotion to ourselves. Losing the war brought great insecurity to the nation and we’ve been compensating for it ever since. At first we were angry at the soldiers, most of them teenagers drafted into the war, for they weren’t great enough to deserve our praise. But thanks to our celebrity saints and their films and TV shows, soldiers have now become our missionaries around the world, spreading the religion of our power. Our soldiers are now viewed as demigods to be worshipped. We must scream our prayers and thankfulness publicly and openly, and bow down because they chose to serve.

Now, don’t get me wrong. It’s correct to support our troops. We hire them to protect us from our enemies, to fight for our interests, and to protect the rule of law, the Constitution and our republican form of government. They’re our team, our people, our defenders. It’s wrong that after Vietnam we didn’t do our best job of providing the support they needed. It’s right that we compensate for that… to an extent. I’m the first to support and rally for our troops, but unfortunately, our American religion has pushed that beyond any semblance of normalcy or reason, to the point that any criticism of the military, soldier behavior, or their out-of-control budget is outright sacrilege. Elevating the military to its current status is dangerous in a democracy, and President Eisenhower, an army general, warned against this back in 1961. We have the best rockets.

We often criticize other countries, regimes, nazis or otherwise of their methods, of their obsession with military displays, with propaganda, with indoctrination, their out-of-control nationalism which punishes dissent and free speech, yet they’d be proud of us. We’ve turned brainwashed loyalty and patriotism into an art form, 2,160 times during our youth and at every event, national or otherwise, especially if sporting. Our religion of ourselves is overpowering, with its rightful president messiah at the head of the table. Its military might and worship, is as out of hand as our spending on it. Separation of church and state is no longer necessary when the official religion is the state itself.

Just pondering…

*Source: National Center for Education Statistics https://nces.ed.gov

Enjoy this post? Be sure to share it, and don’t forget to support our veteran associations who help those who served and is the best “thank you” you can give our troops.
• The U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs offers a directory of veteran service organizations here: https://www.va.gov/vso/
• Here’s how to pick one: http://www.military.com/spouse/military-life/military-resources/military-and-veteran-associations.html

Thank you for liking, following, and the rest of it. Be sure to keep up with everything Franco Esteve at www.francoesteve.com or on Twitter @FrancoEsteve and Facebook https://www.facebook.com/seefrancoesteve.


Follow Franco Esteve:
Official Website: http://www.francoesteve.com

Bookmark and Share

Monday, September 18, 2017

Apple hurts users and developers by removing iOS from iTunes

iTunes desktop app and store with no iOS

Apple has the tendency to develop new features and to explore new ideas by cutting with the past. This has been extremely useful and innovative and has moved technology and our use of it forward, but it’s always left me with a bit of a sour taste in my mouth when each step removes useful features that were actually practical AND popular. It’s like they can’t add something without taking other things away.

iTunes has historically had a love-hate relationship with its users, who use terms like bloatware, slowware, bugware, shit, crap, and all kinds of expletives to describe it. It’s understandable. As something that started as a basic database app to store your music and synchronize it with iPods, hence the name, iTunes had become a be all end all database of media management to synchronize with a huge number of devices, modern and legacy, bloating its size and turning the app into its own operating system that includes music, movies, tv shows, podcasts, books, university courses, audiobooks, ios apps, etc. It’s a player, a file manager, a hardware interface, a synchronizer, an all media store, and now, a streaming music manager and interface.

Throughout the years, Apple has both succeeded and failed in its attempts to streamline and control the interface and functionality of the app and store. It removed books from it when it created the iBooks app and the iBooks section of the store with it. It didn’t even bother to include a Mac App Store, making it a separate, and in my opinion too limited, app. And now, it’s removed the iOS App Store from it.

You might think this is great, removing all that bloatware and being truer to its original intent of a “tunes” player and manager. On the surface, it seems great to push iOS items to where they live, iPhones and iPads, leaving the Mac free to be the Mac, and iTunes to be the Tunes player it was meant to be. Unfortunately, the removal has greater consecuences and affects the iOS ecosystem in a major, extremely negative way.


Unfortunately, the removal has greater consecuences and affects the iOS ecosystem in a major, extremely negative way.


How it hurts iOS users

One of the coolest things about searching the iTunes store on the desktop is that the results show you relevant items from each of the available categories in the store, so a search for Avengers returns results from music from the films and tv shows as well as other artists, movies and tv shows I could rent or purchase, books and comic books for iBooks, Avengers games on iOS, etc. I can’t count the number of times I’ve bought an app while searching for a soundtrack, or a soundtrack while searching for a film, or a book while searching for an App. The value of the cross sell is beyond what anyone might consider.

Apple had removed books from the store, sending the store into iBooks, but they had been intelligent enough to keep books in the search results, in order to capture those impulse purchases from cross searches. With this latest update, that’s just gone for both apps and books, so that usability and convenience has been removed. Now, you have to browse for apps on your tiny iPhone screen and have to go to four different stores to browse for the items they sell. But that’s not the worst of it.

How it hurts iOS developers

One of the coolest features of the iTunes desktop store is that it allowed the “install everywhere and from anywhere” feature. You could browse using the big and comfortable desktop app, click to buy and have it automatically installed on all your devices. Better still, you could land on a developer website and click to install their app from the browser, which would take you automatically to where you could instantly buy and install their app on your device, all through the magic of desktop iTunes. The removal of that particular benefit and seamless usefulness not only makes for a lesser user experience, but it kills developer sales by killing instant conversions/impulse purchases.

Let’s look at an example. I’m on my Mac and get an e-mail from a client in Russian. I use a translation site to read it, but I want to learn Russian, and so decide to do an online search to learn Russian. Duoling comes up as a free, useful option. It’s a free app and looks great, so I click on the “Get on iOS icon”. This takes me to Duolingo’s iTunes page. Before, it would automatically open it in the iTunes store in the iTunes app for me to impulsively click on it to get it, which would automatically install it on my iPhone. Now, it goes to Duolingo’s iTunes page, but I can’t do anything with it there. I have to go into the iPhone, open the App store, search for Duolingo again, look for the correct one, and click to download and install it.

That kills the user experience, and makes it a lot more difficult for developers to get people to install their apps and make money. Every step, every hoop you have to jump through makes it more difficult. It used to be seamless, now it’s not. Was it so difficult for a 250 billion dollar company to maintain this simplicity? Was it really so expensive and impossible to maintain that simple, seamless experience on the desktop that has benefitted iOS and made it so popular and excellent?

Of course, Google and their Android OS copied that iOS functionality, improving their user experience no matter your device. As a Mac/iPhone user, I should be used to Apple’s game of give and take, but I’m not. I guess it’ll save me money in the long run, though, as I’ve already skipped a few apps I would have bought on impulse. Thank you Apple.

As for iOS developers, sorry, but you’ve just been Applefucked… again.

Just pondering…

------
Enjoy the rant? Share this with your friends and follow me on Twitter and on Facebook. Thank you for reading!

Follow Franco Esteve:
http://www.francoesteve.com
https://www.facebook.com/seefrancoesteve
http://twitter.com/FrancoEsteve
http://instagram.com/seefrancoesteve

Keywords: Apple, iTunes, iOS, Mac, iOS Development, User Experience
Bookmark and Share

Monday, August 14, 2017

The Wait reviewed on Jamsphere Magazine

Jamsphere Magazine has posted their review of my latest, modern classical release, The Wait. It will be in the printed magazine's August issue, but you can read it online right now here:
http://jamsphere.com/newreleases/franco-esteve-wait-interprets-palpable-anxieties-waiting

The review has also been picked up by other, online indie music magazines. Thank you Jamsphere for the review and for continuing to support Indie Artists like myself.

If you've never looked at Jamsphere, they are one of the premier, indie music magazines. They also have an indie radio online. Check them out at jamsphere.com

If you haven't heard The Wait yet, what are you waiting for? Here are some links for you to listen, buy, stream, and follow:

Google Play: https://goo.gl/RCgjN7

Follow Franco Esteve:

Huffington Post review of Franco Esteve's "The Wait":




Bookmark and Share

Sunday, August 06, 2017

Listen to my interview on Starcom Radio's The Ed Tyll Show

You can now listen to my interview with award-winning journalist, talk show host, and national spokeperson, Ed Tyll, on Starcom Radio Network's The Ed Tyll Show's Artist in Showcase.

Thank you to Ed Tyll and all the fine folks at The Ed Tyll Show and at the Starcom Radio Network for having me on the show (http://www.edtyllshow.com/)

And thank you to all my fans, followers, and supporters for your ongoing support of all my artistic endeavors! There's more to come...



https://soundcloud.com/franco-esteve/franco-esteves-the-ed-tyll-show-artist-in-showcase-interview-august-1st-2017

Heard the show? Enjoyed the music? Find "The Wait" on:
iTunes: https://goo.gl/M2EN4c
Spotify: https://goo.gl/WWbdpc
CDBaby: https://goo.gl/QMz7ya
Apple Music: https://itun.es/us/qU01jb
Deezer: https://goo.gl/72keko
Amazon: http://amzn.to/2syzCRc
Google Play: https://goo.gl/RCgjN7
Tidal: https://goo.gl/PN4Q6s

Follow Franco Esteve:
http://www.francoesteve.com
https://www.facebook.com/seefrancoesteve
http://twitter.com/FrancoEsteve
http://instagram.com/seefrancoesteve

Huffington Post review of Franco Esteve's "The Wait":
https://goo.gl/Zsi84X
Bookmark and Share

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

Thank you Ed Tyll Radio Show!

Thank you Ed Tyll of the Ed Tyll Radio Show on the Starcom Radio Network for having me on the show, for all the shoutouts and compliments. I'm extremely honored, and it's a pleasure to find someone so like minded in music.

Everyone go check out his show at http://www.edtyllshow.com/

If you don't know Ed Tyll, he's an award-winning journalist, talk show host, and national spokeperson.


For those that missed it, I'll post a link to the recording once it's available. Thank you Ed and thank you to everyone for listening and for your support.

Don't forget to check out the song we were talking about on the show below. It's my latest single, The Wait:

iTunes: https://goo.gl/M2EN4c
Spotify: https://goo.gl/WWbdpc
CDBaby: https://goo.gl/QMz7ya
Apple Music: https://itun.es/us/qU01jb
Deezer: https://goo.gl/72keko
Amazon: http://amzn.to/2syzCRc
Google Play: https://goo.gl/RCgjN7
Tidal: https://goo.gl/PN4Q6s

Follow Franco Esteve:
http://www.francoesteve.com
https://www.facebook.com/seefrancoesteve
http://twitter.com/FrancoEsteve
http://instagram.com/seefrancoesteve

Huffington Post review of Franco Esteve's "The Wait":
https://goo.gl/Zsi84X
Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Franco Esteve on the Ed Tyll Show tonight!





I’ll be on The Ed Tyll Show (http://www.edtyllshow.com/) on the Starcom Radio Network at 5:30pm USA Eastern Std Time TODAY (23:30 CET).




Turn your dials to one of their stations or listen directly online on their website: http://www.starcomradionetwork.com/stations.html

If you don't know Ed Tyll, he's an award-winning journalist, talk show host, and national spokeperson.

And stay tuned, as there's more to come. Currently promoting the modern classical song, The Wait.
Get it on:
iTunes: https://goo.gl/M2EN4c
Spotify: https://goo.gl/WWbdpc
CDBaby: https://goo.gl/QMz7ya
Apple Music: https://itun.es/us/qU01jb
Deezer: https://goo.gl/72keko
Amazon: http://amzn.to/2syzCRc
Google Play: https://goo.gl/RCgjN7
Tidal: https://goo.gl/PN4Q6s

Follow Franco Esteve:
http://www.francoesteve.com
https://www.facebook.com/seefrancoesteve
http://twitter.com/FrancoEsteve
http://instagram.com/seefrancoesteve

Huffington Post review of Franco Esteve's "The Wait":
https://goo.gl/Zsi84X
Bookmark and Share

Jiggy Jaguar Interviews Franco Esteve on The Sunday Radio Program

Listen to Franco Esteve's interview on Jiggy Jaguar's The Sunday Radio Program. As difficult as it was at times during the interview to listen & communicate remotely from across the globe, it was great fun. Listen on YouTube here: https://youtu.be/nPsYkC0RXhQ



Thank you to the fine folks at The Sunday Radio Program for having me on your radio show and for all the shout outs (Thanks Jiggy Jaguar!). It was a lot of fun to meet y'all and be on the show. Everyone should head out to their page (https://www.facebook.com/sundayradioprogram) and to www.jiggyjaguar.com and have a listen. Their show is heard throughout the United States as well as online and on the Jiggy Jaguar app. 

I'd also like to give special thanks to author and radio program collaborator Jae Byrd Wells. Check her out at https://www.facebook.com/Jae.Byrd.Wells/ and her books on Amazon: http://amzn.to/2uOYsQf.

Remember to listen to, enjoy, and buy The Wait and keep up with Franco Esteve using the links below:
iTunes: https://goo.gl/M2EN4c
Spotify: https://goo.gl/WWbdpc
CDBaby: https://goo.gl/QMz7ya
Apple Music: https://itun.es/us/qU01jb
Deezer: https://goo.gl/72keko
Amazon: http://amzn.to/2syzCRc
Google Play: https://goo.gl/RCgjN7
Tidal: https://goo.gl/PN4Q6s

Follow Franco Esteve:
http://www.francoesteve.com
https://www.facebook.com/seefrancoesteve
http://twitter.com/FrancoEsteve
http://instagram.com/seefrancoesteve

Huffington Post review of Franco Esteve's "The Wait":
https://goo.gl/Zsi84X

keywords: Franco Esteve, interview, Jiggy Jaguar, Jae Byrd Wells, The Sunday Radio Show, The Wait, music, radio
Bookmark and Share

The "Yeah, I Know it Sucks" Blog reviews The Doll Chronicles music and films





Thank you to the "Yeah, I Know it Sucks" blog for their wonderful review of both Consequence, The Doll Chronicles and Paranoia, The Doll Chronicles short films and their soundtracks, and for their kind words about my work.







Everyone can go read the review here: https://yeahiknowitsucks.wordpress.com/2017/07/28/franco-esteve-consequence-paranoia-the-doll-chronicles/

If you haven't seen the films, you can see them on the embedded links on their review or you can visit me on Vimeo: https://www.vimeo.com/FrancoEsteve

Don't forget that you can find my music on all the popular services and you can read more about it at www.francoesteve.com or at the CDBaby Store (full previews available) http://store.cdbaby.com/artist/francoesteve

Follow Franco Esteve:
http://www.francoesteve.com
https://www.facebook.com/seefrancoesteve
http://twitter.com/FrancoEsteve
http://instagram.com/seefrancoesteve
Bookmark and Share

Monday, July 31, 2017

The Wait reviewed on the Huffington Post




The Huffington Post has just reviewed The Wait!!!!! Thank you Mr. Radic for the wonderful review. I'm glad you enjoyed the music and I will definitely be dropping an album at some point soon.  






Check out the review here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/596b9fe7e4b09e26b6d768e5

iTunes: https://goo.gl/M2EN4c
Spotify: https://goo.gl/WWbdpc
CDBaby: https://goo.gl/QMz7ya
Apple Music: https://itun.es/us/qU01jb
Deezer: https://goo.gl/72keko
Amazon: http://amzn.to/2syzCRc
Google Play: https://goo.gl/RCgjN7
Tidal: https://goo.gl/PN4Q6s

Follow Franco Esteve:
http://www.francoesteve.com
https://www.facebook.com/seefrancoesteve
http://twitter.com/FrancoEsteve
http://instagram.com/seefrancoesteve

Huffington Post review of Franco Esteve's "The Wait":
https://goo.gl/Zsi84X
Bookmark and Share

Sunday, July 30, 2017

New Music Release! The Wait, a classical music single by Franco Esteve

Franco Esteve's The Wait CD Cover
The Wait - Cover Art
Just released! Franco Esteve's new, classical music single!

The Wait


The Wait is a classical style piece of music that reflects waiting and anticipation. It was written out of insomnia and the constant incapacity to sleep.

It’s something I have personally struggled with throughout my life, and I admit a lot of my ideas flow from those hours fighting with it. The Wait is directly related to it, born of it. It’s that anxious waiting for sleep to come, the time ticking away, the realization that time is passing and the possible sleep time lessens. Suddenly, you feel it, but it disappears once again, and the anxiousness returns.



The different orchestral elements attempt to reflect that, with the violin’s pizzicato ticking away, as other elements creep in, and the mind races in the darkness. It features violins, cello, horns, and a rainstick to tell the story of that struggle with insomnia. For me it expresses that story. For you, it might express something different. It might inspire one of my films or stories, or one of yours.

The Wait is currently available on all the main, online music stores and streaming services. Listen to the song and get it on CD Baby using the player included here:

You can find it on iTunes clicking here. Spotify users can find it by clicking here.

The Wait - Copyright©2017 Franco Esteve. All rights reserved.

Thank you!

I hope y'all enjoy this release and all my music. Thank you all for your continuing encouragement and support, and for all the wonderful messages. Stay tuned, there's much more to come. :)

Don't forget to stay up to date by liking the Franco Esteve Facebook page, as well as following bNowhere and Franco Esteve on Twitter and on Spotify. Thanks again and Enjoy! :)

iTunes: https://goo.gl/M2EN4c
Spotify: https://goo.gl/WWbdpc
CDBaby: https://goo.gl/QMz7ya
Apple Music: https://itun.es/us/qU01jb
Deezer: https://goo.gl/72keko
Amazon: http://amzn.to/2syzCRc
Google Play: https://goo.gl/RCgjN7
Tidal: https://goo.gl/PN4Q6s

Follow Franco Esteve:
http://www.francoesteve.com
https://www.facebook.com/seefrancoesteve
http://twitter.com/FrancoEsteve
http://instagram.com/seefrancoesteve

Huffington Post review of Franco Esteve's "The Wait":
https://goo.gl/Zsi84X




Having problems listening to the music. Listen on YouTube here: https://youtu.be/1xuNddOHpD8

keywords: music, single, release, classical, instrumental, the wait, violin, cello, french horn, rainstick, franco esteve
Bookmark and Share