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Wagner weighs in on Election 2012
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dmitchell
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 6:28 pm    Post subject: Wagner weighs in on Election 2012 Reply with quote

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It was only a matter of time: Richard Wagner, the most volcanically controversial figure in the history of music, has inserted himself into the 2012 Presidential election. The ad above was released by the Emergency Committee for Israel, a political advocacy group overseen by William Kristol and Gary Bauer, among others. The soundtrack is a lightly mangled version of Siegfried’s Funeral Music, from “Götterdämmerung,” the final opera of the “Ring” cycle. The choice serves various purposes. First, it creates a palpable chill, endowing President Obama with a demonic aura. Second, viewers who are aware of Wagner’s anti-Semitism may instinctively associate the shouting crowd at the Democratic National Convention with anti-Jewish mobs. Finally, the ad seems designed to trigger memories of the Wagnerian iconography of Hitler’s Germany. Siegfried’s Funeral Music was the chief anthem of Nazi mourning, and was heard alongside the slow movement of Bruckner’s Seventh Symphony after Hitler’s death. On some subliminal level, the ad might actually be equating Obama with Hitler. How well it works as political propaganda is not for me to judge, but it did succeed in making me feel ill. more...

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wildhorse
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 8:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Elsewhere: Henry Maske and the Conquest of Paradise (Vangelis).
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Bones McCracker
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2012 12:21 am    Post subject: Re: Wagner weighs in on Election 2012 Reply with quote

dmitchell wrote:
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It was only a matter of time: Richard Wagner, the most volcanically controversial figure in the history of music, has inserted himself into the 2012 Presidential election. The ad above was released by the Emergency Committee for Israel, a political advocacy group overseen by William Kristol and Gary Bauer, among others. The soundtrack is a lightly mangled version of Siegfried’s Funeral Music, from “Götterdämmerung,” the final opera of the “Ring” cycle. The choice serves various purposes. First, it creates a palpable chill, endowing President Obama with a demonic aura. Second, viewers who are aware of Wagner’s anti-Semitism may instinctively associate the shouting crowd at the Democratic National Convention with anti-Jewish mobs. Finally, the ad seems designed to trigger memories of the Wagnerian iconography of Hitler’s Germany. Siegfried’s Funeral Music was the chief anthem of Nazi mourning, and was heard alongside the slow movement of Bruckner’s Seventh Symphony after Hitler’s death. On some subliminal level, the ad might actually be equating Obama with Hitler. How well it works as political propaganda is not for me to judge, but it did succeed in making me feel ill. more...

It's nice to see his music can still inspire people, even if it's to avoid the "Jews in the attic" type of scenario we are rapidly headed toward. Populist demagoguery (which pretty much sums up Obama) and authoritarianism always go hand in hand, and both make heavy use of "the enemy within" bogeyman.
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pjp
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2012 2:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Remember when Democrats were going on about Bush being worse than Hitler? That was awesome.
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richk449
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2012 3:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow, that was a beautifully done commercial. I would watch more by whoever made that.

And I see why you like Wagner, D:
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Despite various self-serving alliances, Wagner was an anarchist at heart, hostile to most modern manifestations of the state; in his last years, he preached against militarism and fearfully predicted future wars of mass annihilation. Any ideological appropriation of Wagner, whether on the right, left, or center, requires selective quotation; the contradictions of the man are innumerable.
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2012 4:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Link?
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dmitchell
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2012 4:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

bogamol wrote:
Link?

Here you go.
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dmitchell
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2012 4:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

richk449 wrote:
Wow, that was a beautifully done commercial. I would watch more by whoever made that.

Maybe the Met should hire him to produce a new Ring cycle.

Quote:
And I see why you like Wagner, D:
Quote:
Despite various self-serving alliances, Wagner was an anarchist at heart, hostile to most modern manifestations of the state; in his last years, he preached against militarism and fearfully predicted future wars of mass annihilation. Any ideological appropriation of Wagner, whether on the right, left, or center, requires selective quotation; the contradictions of the man are innumerable.

:D

Also, I am very glad to see that someone read the entire piece. Ross has a gift for writing about music. Can't wait to read his Wagner book.
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