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15 April 2019

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JerseyJeffersonian

A very sad development:

https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/ct-notre-dame-fire-paris-20190415-story.html

France suffers another blow.

Loneprotester

Maybe, like me, you have spent half the day following social media stories about the immolation of Notre Dame de Paris and ruminating on the end of the West. We have gotten to the point in the fire when all hope is basically lost and it is being replaced with cheerful talk about rebuilding. I am a historian. I do not believe in reconstructions of past glories. Once they are gone, their soul departs, just as with a human body. A cathedral like Notre Dame is the collective thoughts, prayers, and contributions of thousands of true believers over 300 years. We can't even put our phones down for 10 minutes. We don't contemplate the divine MULTIPLE times a day. We don't structure our workdays, our lives, our worldview around it. And France, let's face it, has been anti-clerical some 250 years, at least. It is ethnically and religiously divided now. What on earth can a secular state with divided loyalties build that can rival our great cultural treasures? No. I'm full of despair right now. Can anyone cheer me up with a more upbeat take?

Fred

I walked out of the BHV Marais at 7:00pm Paris time and watched part of the ongoing tragedy at Notre Dame. Now 6 hours later it is even worse than I thought. The mayor should be removed. Disgraceful doesn't do justice to what appeared to be the response. "Industrial accident". Right. Where were the on duty fire watches to ensure nothing caught fire? How about pre-staged fire fighting gear in the event something did occur during construction work? Please tell me as regulated a city as this didn't require that in a building a couple hundred feet tall with no sprinkler system for obvious reasons.

It's not like Paris doesn't have a first class fire department that can handle fires in tall buildings. Where were those fire apparatus and how was the traffic pattern now that you have all those bike lanes? Yeah, climate change and we only have 12 years and its not like we'll need to move that gear from one part of the city to another in rush hour. Bravo Madame Socialist Mayor. Notre Dame survived the Revolution and the Nazi's but socialism, now that's another thing entirely.

tewara

The "democratic" islamist klepts running Turkey are doing all they can to change the results of the municipal elections in Istanbul. The collapsing economy and the strategic mistakes they made in Syria are starting to constrain their act quite a bit. This year promises to be quite interesting.
Ishmael Zechariah
p.s: I would appreciate learning David Habakkuk's opinion about the Assange issue, as well as any speculations he might have on the fate of the Skripals.

Tidewater

There is some good news about Notre Dame. The north rose stained glass window 'seems to have held.' Certainly all the windows will possibly have to be taken down, or if left in place, then cleaned, and possibly repaired; but if the windows are safe and the shell remains, plus the twin towers, then the rest of the damage can be put right. Hurrah for the Paris fire brigade! I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw this. I expected a pile of rubble and broken glass. The Cossack phoned up hours later in tears. I said: 'This is worse than 9/11.' She replied through her sobs: "Of course!"

I was at Canterbury after having been at Paris some twelve years ago, and I couldn't help but notice that with the exception of those famous blue windows with stories about tragic events on the river Stour etc. a number of the Canterbury windows, many of them much newer, did not have quite the same fabulous color of the lost medieval techniques. Puritan soldiers did some very destructive work in Canterbury cathedral. Sort of like the Taliban.

Coincidentally, I was recently thinking about Raymond Carver's famous short story 'The Cathedral.' This raises the question how would a blind man perceive a cathedral, and ends up surprisingly with a sighted man learning empathy for someone who is blind and understanding for a moment something about blindness. Odd thought: never to have seen a cathedral?

notlurking

Just a thought but is commenting about one of the big stories out there in the last few days...the arrest of Assange not allowed?....

Turcopolier

Talking about Assange is allowed, but I am not much interested. My belief is that he will be extradited to the US, tried and sentenced to life imprisonment. Will he have something interesting to say along the way? Maybe.

Eugene Owens

I share your delight that the Rose Windows seem to have survived. It would have been unbearable for them to turn to molten glass and lead after making it through eight centuries.

And although the three smaller bells in the spire are gone, the ten in the bell tower are still there. Including the the only one to have escaped being melted down to make cannons during the French Revolution, the 13-ton le bourdon Emmanuel.

Tidewater

Hey Fred. Wow! SST has a foreign correspondent on the spot as the news is happening! I'm impressed! Hope that we enfants may get a little photo-essay. But if not...

Bon appetit!

Kilo 4/11

Loneprotester said...
Maybe, like me, you have spent half the day following social media stories about the immolation of Notre Dame de Paris and ruminating on the end of the West. We have gotten to the point in the fire when all hope is basically lost and it is being replaced with cheerful talk about rebuilding. I am a historian. I do not believe in reconstructions of past glories. Once they are gone, their soul departs, just as with a human body. A cathedral like Notre Dame is the collective thoughts, prayers, and contributions of thousands of true believers over 300 years. We can't even put our phones down for 10 minutes. We don't contemplate the divine MULTIPLE times a day. We don't structure our workdays, our lives, our worldview around it. And France, let's face it, has been anti-clerical some 250 years, at least. It is ethnically and religiously divided now. What on earth can a secular state with divided loyalties build that can rival our great cultural treasures? No. I'm full of despair right now. Can anyone cheer me up with a more upbeat take?
Reply 15 April 2019 at 05:12 PM


Loneprotester, you are saying what is in my heart. This is a disaster of incalculable proportions. The civilization that produced this sublime work, that was capable of this profound level of faith, vanished long ago. But until today, we at least had this sacred monument, this silent but indomitable witness, to that time and to those people. She stood there through it all - think of the history that passed before her! - like the sorrowful mother for whom she was named, who never left the side of her Son, even unto the Cross. Through all the cruelty, misery, degradation, mockery, and folly of her children - not even the bestial, deracinated revolutionaries dared to destroy her - she stood waiting, always there for the wayward who wished to return to the faith. Her presence seemed gently to remind us, that if we could do this once, we might do it again, if only we came back to her side. And maybe that is why she was destroyed.

turcopolier

I share your despair but will not yield to it. The sight of so many people singing hymns in the streets must be noted. In a largely heathen France it is remarkable that so many still know these hymns.

turcopolier

Fred has promised us this. I have not posted on the fire because he is writing for us.

Kilo 4/11

"Disgraceful doesn't do justice to what appeared to be the response. "Industrial accident". Right. Where were the on duty fire watches to ensure nothing caught fire?"

Agree 100%. But this is far beyond criminal negligence - this reeks of the godless, one-worlder, anti-Western regime currently ruining France. They have all the troops they need for the Arc de Triomphe, that vacuous pile of rocks dedicated to their beloved little dictator. La Gloire de la France, mon cul!

Kilo 4/11

"I share your despair but will not yield to it."

You set a worthy and heartening example.

I did not know about the hymn singing. That, too, is encouraging. One hopes that this loss stirs something in the hearts of Frenchmen.

turcopolier

It may be that some of my ancestors worshiped in Notre Dame de Paris before sailing to New France in the 17th Century. I am an avowed francophile but I did not realize how French I am until I saw the crowds in Paris today.

Fred

I had a couple of far more pleasant things queued up but when I'm back on solid ground I'll put something together.

Fred

Socialism's 9-11 Macron and the Mayor both failed to defend a Christian holyplace before the eyes of the world. Even Maduro wouldn't let that happen.

Fred

Yee of little faith.

Ishmael Zechariah

Update: The Turkish Board of Elections officially confirmed the election of the opposition candidate in Istanbul today, despite the strenuous objections of the regime. With this result, the ruling islamist-"nationalist" coalition has lost municipal elections in all major cities in Turkey. I do not think that this state of affairs will change anything in Turkish governance in the short run. OTOH, it will probably lead to long term changes when coupled with the current state of the "Turkish economic miracle" and the magnificent successes of the "neo-ottoman foreign policy"
Ishmael Zechariah

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