Recommended reading / viewing / listening

Military spouses / Recession’s mental toll / OWS adrfit / Obama at the center / Sex on a plane

Most of these great items come from my Twitter feed or Facebook news feed. Follow me on Twitter and on Facebook for more fascinating videos, articles, essays and criticism. Read past recommendations from this series here.

1. Help for military spouses
By Laura Dempsey | Politico | Jan. 12
“Underemployment among military spouses, who are more educated on average than their peers, remains rampant. These are dismal numbers even in today’s struggling economy.”

2. Fighting the Last War
By Elizabeth Dickinson | Washington Monthly | Janurary/February 2012
“As president of Colombia, Álvaro Uribe triumphed over a fierce narco-insurgency. Then the U.S. helped to export his strategy to Mexico and throughout Latin America. Here’s why it’s not working.”

3. The depressing toll of the Great Recession
By Rob Waters | Salon | Jan. 11
“Mental health problems mount nationwide while budgets for treatment and care are shrinking”

4. After encampment ends, NYC Occupiers become nomads
By Meghan Barr | Associated Press | Jan. 12
“Amid accusations of drug use and sporadic theft, they’ve been sleeping on church pews for weeks, consuming at least $20,000 of the funds that Occupy Wall Street still has in its coffers.”

5. America and the Middle East: What Lies Ahead
By Ray Suarez | America Abroad Media | January 2012
“With American troops out of Iraq and leaving Afghanistan – what will America’s ‘strong presence’ in the region look like? ”

6. The center is back — and Obama needs to be there
By Mark Penn | The Hill | Jan. 11
“The center is back. After a year in which it looked like the Republican Party was headed to the extremes with Sarah Palin, Donald Trump, Herman Cain and then Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney … took 49 percent of the Republicans who voted in the New Hampshire open primary.”

7. This much I know: Juliette Lewis
By Ben Mitchell | The Observer | November 2009
“The actress and singer, 36, in her own words”

8. Casting Inshallah
Al Jazeera World | December 2011
“An insight into life in a Moroccan town where many locals make a living as film extras for major Hollywood productions.”

9. The Water Cure
By C. Claiborne Ray | Q&A :: The New York Times | September 2010
“Why do they tell you to drink extra fluids when you are sick? Does it really do any good?”

10. ‘The Captain Requests That All Zippers Be Returned to the Upright Position’
By Brian Palmer | Explainer :: Slate | September 2011
“How are flight attendants supposed to deal with fornicating passengers?”

**************

TUNES

My soundtrack for today included:

1. SAMBA PARA TI Santana
2. BIRTHDAY PERFORMANCE Tito Puente
3. PUEBLO NUEVO Ruben Gonzalez
4. LA CUMBIA DEL MOLE Lila Downs
5. LA SOLEDAD Pink Martini
6. COMPOSITOR CONFUNDIDO Ibrahim Ferrer
7. LA RAZA Kid Frost
8. TI MON BO Tito Puente
9. ALMENDRA Ruben Gonzalez
10. EL CARRETERO Eliades Ochoa

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

MLK’s image still evolves / The Greatest turns 70 / A ‘Titanic’ tragedy at sea? / Matching fingerprints / ‘Acting’ gay

Most of these great items come from my Twitter feed or Facebook news feed. Follow me on Twitter and on Facebook for more fascinating videos, articles, essays and criticism.

1. If You’re Mad for ‘Downton,’ Publishers Have Reading List
By Julie Bosman | The New York Times | Jan. 11
“Publishers are convinced that viewers who obsessively tune in to follow the war-torn travails of an aristocratic family and its meddling but loyal servants are also literary types, likely to devour books on subjects the series touches.”

2. Ali still the Greatest as he celebrates 70th
By Tim Dahlberg | Associated Press | Jan. 15
“The voice that used to bellow that he was ‘The Greatest’ is largely muted now, save for those times in the mornings when he is able to whisper his thoughts.”

3. Cruise tragedy conjures memories of doomed Titanic
By Tamara Lush | Associated Press | Jan. 15
“Are such comparisons to a 100-year-old tragedy fair?”

4. GOP’s Latino problem gets worse
By Thomas Schaller | Salon | Jan. 11
“Romney’s Spanish-language TV ads can’t overcome the party’s poor reputation among Hispanics”

5. Q&A: Turkey’s military and the alleged coup plots
By Bridget Kendall | BBC News | Jan. 6
“The former head of the Turkish armed forces, Gen Ilker Basbug, has become the biggest casualty yet of a huge crackdown on alleged conspirators against the government which has brought hundreds of military and security officers to trial.”

6. Pakistan’s Slow-Motion Coup
By C. Christine Fair | Foreign Policy | Jan. 5
“Islamabad’s generals are out to destroy Pakistani democracy. Obama should try to stop them.”

7. Towering legend, flawed man? King’s image evolving
By Brett Zongker and Samantha Gross | Associated Press | Jan. 15
“On the National Mall in Washington, Martin Luther King Jr. is a towering, heroic figure carved in stone. On the Broadway stage, he’s a living, breathing man who chain smokes, sips liquor and occasionally curses. As Americans honor King’s memory 44 years after he was assassinated, the image of the slain civil rights leader is evolving.”

8. Match Making
By C. Claiborne Ray | Q&A :: The New York Times | May 2010
“Is a voice print as distinctive as a fingerprint, or have I just been watching too much ’24’?”

9. When Do Gay Kids Start ‘Acting Gay’?
By Brian Palmer | Explainer :: Slate | September 2011
“Sometimes when they’re toddlers”

10. Weathermen radicals in the USA
Witness :: BBC News | March 2011
“In March 1970, three white middle-class revolutionaries from the Weatherman movement accidentally killed themselves at their New York safehouse.”

**************

TUNES

Tonight I’m spending some time with the blues, specifically with the Texas Blues Café. Check out the line-up and then listen here.

1. Wiser Time — High Time Mind
2. Floyd Lee Band — Mean Blues
3. Eric Guitar Davis — Put Me Down
4. Pat Green — Wrapped
5. Rick Fowler — Back On My Good Foot
6. HoneyBoy Dupree — These Blues Is Killin’ Me
7. Jet — Are You Gonna Be My Girl
8. Electrofied — Put Your Hands In The Air
9. Delbert McClinton — Every Time I Roll The Dice
10. Rico Enriquez — Crossroadblues
11. Voodoo Snakes — Fire
12. Ernie Payne — Nothing Wrong With Texas
13. Los Lonely Boys — Polk Salad Annie
14. Los Lonely Boys — Evil Ways
*Outro song by Chris Duarte — Let’s Have A Party