Amerikan Rambler: Podcast 28: Ira Berlin

From Oct. 2016: “Ira Berlin has been called ‘one of the greatest living historians of slavery in the United States.’ “

Dr. Berlin talks about his first plane ride, activism in the 1960s, and why he chose to exchange a lab coat for the historian’s garb. Also, Ira and Colin share their thoughts about the 2016 election.

via Podcast 28: Ira Berlin — Amerikan Rambler: Everybody Has a Story

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

Cut back on non-friends / What Obama knew / Future of OWS / New treasures in Istanbul / Why do we yawn?

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. Unfriend Everyone
By Sam Biddle | Gizmodo | Jan. 20
“You have too many Facebook friends. You’re following too many people on Twitter. You’re connected to too many people who don’t care too much about you. Get rid of them. Get rid of all of them.”

2. Courts Moving Too Slow for April Primary Elections
By Ross Ramsey | The Texas Tribune | Jan. 20
“The Democratic and Republican political parties hold their state conventions June 7-9.”

3. Italy Finds a Heroic Foil for Its Scorned Captain
By Elisabetta Povoledo | The New York Times | Jan. 19
“Easily adapting to the national propensity for dualism, Italians have got themselves a hero to play against their antihero, a champion to their villain …”

4. Obama warned about skyrocketing debt before he took office
By Donovan Slack | Politico 44 :: Politico | Jan. 23
“Economic advisers warned President Obama before he took the oath of office that he would have to spend hundreds of billions of dollars to help right the economy and such spending could run up the highest national debt since World War II. …”

5. What Future for Occupy Wall Street?
By Michael Greenberg | The New York Review of Books | Feb. 9
“Occupy Wall Street’s expansion to many other cities seems to have been preordained, but at the time it caught even its most committed supporters off guard.”

6. After Being Stricken by Drought, Istanbul Yields Ancient Treasure
By Jennifer Pinkowski | The New York Times | Jan. 23
“In the last dig season alone, the archaeologists uncovered port walls, elaborate buildings, an enormous cistern, a Byzantine church and stone roads spanning more than 1,000 years of occupation.”

7. Too many tests? Routine checks getting second look
By Lauran Neergaard | Associated Press | Jan. 23
“The worry: If given too often, these tests can waste time and money, and sometimes even do harm if false alarms spur unneeded follow-up care. It begs the question: Just what should be part of my doctor’s visit?”

8. Confident Obama Knows Wild Cards Can Loom Large
By Jackie Calmes | The New York Times | Jan. 23
“Democrats are enjoying the show, though mindful that much could change in the nine months before Election Day — as it often has in Mr. Obama’s term, and not for the better. ”

9. This Much I Know: Robert Duvall
By Tony Horkins | The Observer | February 2010
“The Hollywood legend, 79, on football, Brando and the tango”

10. The Yawning Gap
By C. Claiborne Ray | Q&A :: The New York Times | June 2011
“Do people yawn when they are asleep? Why do they yawn in the first place?”

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

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