Recommended reading / viewing / listening

This week: FEMA and Hurricane Maria / Dear Abby and #MeToo / Learn to be happy at Yale / Understanding Sarah Huckabee Sanders / Summer books, movies, and TV

This week: FEMA and Hurricane Maria / Dear Abby and #MeToo / Learn to be happy at Yale / Understanding Sarah Huckabee Sanders / Summer books, movies, and TV

Most of these great items come from my social media networks. Follow me on Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, LinkedIn, and Facebook for more fascinating videos, photos, articles, essays, and criticism.

1. FEMA Was Sorely Unprepared for Puerto Rico Hurricane, Report Says
By Francis Robles | The New York Times | July 2018
“The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s plans for a crisis in Puerto Rico were based on a focused disaster like a tsunami, not a major hurricane devastating the whole island. The agency vastly underestimated how much food and fresh water it would need, and how hard it would be to get additional supplies to the island.”

2. Plane Bae Teaches Us That Other People’s Lives Are Not a Movie for Us to Watch
By Dan Solomon | Texas Monthly | July 2018
“How a chance encounter on a flight to Dallas turned into an internet sensation, and why it shouldn’t happen again.”

3. Dear Abby, #MeToo
By Jessica Weisberg | The New York Times | April 2018
“[#MeToo] created room for the sort of discussions that once were restricted to, essentially, just one type of public space: advice columns. For decades, the columns were where women with creepy bosses or abusive husbands went to air their grievances.”

4. At Yale, you can take a course on being happy
By Billy Baker | The Boston Globe | April 2018
“The success of the class has been unprecedented. So many students signed up that the meeting space had to be moved to Woolsey Hall, a cavernous, cathedral-like auditorium typically used for things like symphony concerts. The sheer volume of students requires two dozen teaching fellows.”

5. Margaret Atwood on How She Came to Write The Handmaid’s Tale
By Margaret Atwood | The Folio Society :: LitHub | April 2018
“The origin story of an iconic novel”

6. The Puzzle of Sarah Huckabee Sanders
By Jason Schwartz | Politico Magazine | May/June 2018
“How a bright, competent and likable young operative became the face of the most duplicitous press operation in White House history.”

7. Hear Stanley Kubrick Explain the 2001: A Space Odyssey Ending In a Rare, Unearthed Video
By Matt Miller | Esquire | July 2018
“The director famously refused to give his interpretation of the sci-fi masterpiece.”

8. Summer Reading: Movies & TV
By Ben Dickinson | The New York Times Book Review | June 2018
New books about Bruce Lee, David Lynch, The Wire and 2001: A Space Odyssey, along with recommendations on new thrillers, true crime, travel, sports and more.

9. How Syria Came to This
By Andrew Tabler | The Atlantic | April 2018
“A story of ethnic and sectarian conflict, international connivance, and above all civilian suffering”

10. The Woman Who Brought Down Bill Cosby
By Neeti Upadhye | The New York Times | April 2018
“Andrea Constand is the only woman among more than 50 accusers whose complaint against Mr. Cosby has resulted in a conviction. A jury found him guilty of three counts of aggravated indecent assault.”

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

This week: Trump’s first 100 days? / Trump’s battle against Clinton / Freak kangaroo / Boots on the ground / Does Texas still matter in politics?

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This week: Trump’s first 100 days? / Trump’s battle against Clinton / Freak kangaroo / Boots on the ground / Does Texas still matter in politics?

Most of these great items come from my social media networks. Follow me on Twitter, Tumblr, LinkedIn, and Facebook for more fascinating videos, photos, articles, essays, and criticism.

1. Trump: The First 100 Days
By Matt Latimer | Politico Magazine | February 2016
“It’s time to start thinking about his — gulp — presidency.”

2. The Republican Horse Race Is Over, and Journalism Lost
By Jim Rutenberg | Mediator :: The New York Times | May 5
“[Y]ou have to point the finger at national political journalism, which has too often lost sight of its primary directives in this election season: to help readers and viewers make sense of the presidential chaos; to reduce the confusion, not add to it; to resist the urge to put ratings, clicks and ad sales above the imperative of getting it right.”

3. Trump’s deportation plan could slice 2 percent off U.S. GDP: study
By Luciana Lopez | Reuters | May 5
“About 6.8 million of the more than 11 million immigrants living in the United States illegally are employed, according to government statistics. Removing them would cause a slump of $381.5 billion to $623.2 billion in private sector output. …”

4. Yes, It’s Early, but Donald Trump Would Have Uphill Battle Against Hillary Clinton
By Nate Cohn | The Upshot :: The New York Times | May 3
“Trump’s biggest problem is that he would be the most unpopular major party nominee in the modern era, with nearly two-thirds saying they have an unfavorable opinion of him.”

5. Analysis: Texas Political Influence Nosedives in National Campaign
By Ross Ramsey | The Texas Tribune | May 3
“[I]t’s not only the state’s candidates who were getting knocked around in the race for president; the ideas that have propelled Texas Republicans for the past two decades — ideas like federalism and social conservatism — have taken a hit, too. Texas is getting clobbered this year.”

6. How Does Ted Cruz Return To The Senate?
By Abby Livingston | The Texas Tribune | May 3
“[W]hen he returns to the Senate with two and a half years left in his freshman term, he will enter hostile territory.”

7. Watch Kangaroo Crack Car Windshield In Terrifying Feet-First Leap
By Lee Moran | Huffington Post | May 3
“The driver unleashes a series of curse words as it hits the window.”

8. Q&A: When is a Boot on the Ground not a Boot on the Ground?
By Lolita C. Baldor | Associated Press | May 3
“The semantic arguments over whether there are American ‘boots on the ground’ muddy the view of a situation in which several thousand armed U.S. military personnel are in Iraq and Syria.”

9. Trump’s VP: Top 10 contenders
By Jonathan Easley | The Hill | May 5
“It could be a difficult undertaking, as some potential candidates might be hesitant to hitch their political future to a polarizing figure like Trump. But there will be plenty willing to roll the dice and join Trump’s historic outsider campaign.”

10. History’s Lessons in Crisis Management
By Michael Beschloss | HistorySource :: The New York Times | July 2014
“A student of history, as well as a sardonic, self-protective political operator, J.F.K. was always attuned to the possibility that some unforeseen event could quickly send history into an unwanted direction.”

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

Tracking whale sharks / How Nixon chased women / Dead vice presidents / Man-made eggs, woman-made sperm / Chronicling Syria’s bloodshed / Friday’s blues

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For this week:
Tracking whale sharks / How Nixon chased women / Dead vice presidents / Man-made eggs, woman-made sperm / Chronicling Syria’s bloodshed / Friday’s blues

Most of these great items come from my social media networks. Follow me on Twitter, Tumblr, LinkedIn, MySpace, and Facebook for more fascinating videos, photos, articles, essays, and criticism.

1. Where the Whale Sharks Go
By Christopher Joyce | Morning Edition :: NPR | Aug. 22
“After tagging more than 800 whale sharks over nine years, the team discovered that after feeding, the sharks head off in seemingly random directions. Some travel thousands of miles, and they can dive a mile deep.”

2. How the Nixon Administration Tried to Woo Women
By Emma Green | The Atlantic | Aug. 22
“It turns out that the Republican strategy on women in the 1970s was about as nimble as ‘binders full of women’ ”

3. Have any vice presidents died in office?
By Anthony Bergen | Dead Presidents | August 2013
“Yes, quite a few of our Vice Presidents have died in office, actually — SEVEN out of 47 total, so about 15% of the VPs didn’t survive their term.”

4. Lab-Made Egg and Sperm Precursors Raise Prospect for Infertility Treatment
By David Cyranoski | Nature / Scientific American | Aug. 21
“A technical tour de force, which involved creating primordial germ cells from mouse skin cells, is prompting scientists to consider attempting this experiment with human cells”

5. Syria’s civil war: A chronicle of bloodshed
By Emily Lodish | GlobalPost | Aug. 21
“News of a possible chemical weapons attack in Syria follows a chain of deadly events. Here’s a look at the worst of the worst.”

6. The Latinos turning to Islam
By Katy Watson | Newshour :: BBC World News | August 2013
“With more than 50 million Hispanics living in the US, the Latino community is now the country’s biggest minority. ”

7. Covering Nixon
The New York Review of Books | Aug. 9
“The sheer number, variety, and viciousness of David Levine’s drawings of Nixon provide some sense of his place in The New York Review’s pages during the five and a half years of his presidency.”

8. Bezos, Heraclitus and the Hybrid Future of Journalism
By Arianna Huffington | LinkedIn | Aug. 14
“The future will definitely be a hybrid one, combining the best practices of traditional journalism — fairness, accuracy, storytelling, deep investigations — with the best tools available to the digital world — speed, transparency, and, above all, engagement.”

9. The Man Who Knew Too Much
By Marie Brenner | Vanity Fair | May 1996
“Angrily, painfully, Jeffrey Wigand emerged from the sealed world of Big Tobacco to confront the nation’s third-largest cigarette company, Brown & Williamson. Hailed as a hero by anti-smoking forces and vilified by the tobacco industry, Wigand is at the center of an epic multibillion-dollar struggle that reaches from Capitol Hill to the hallowed journalistic halls of CBS’s 60 Minutes.”

10. Are Apostrophes Necessary?
By Matthew J.X. Malady | Slate | May 2013
“Not really, no.”

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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. Gary Moore — Texas Strut
2. Paul Rodgers & Gary Moore — She Moves Me
3. Dr. Wu — Storm Watch Warning
4. Needtobreathe — Prisoner
5. Rick Huckaby — Can’t Miss Kid
6. The Mark Knoll Band — High Time
7. Preacherstone — Old Fashioned Ass Whoopin’
8. Brian Burns & Ray Wylie Hubbard — Little Angel Comes A-Walkin
9. Cody Gill Band — Crazy
10. Ramblin Dawgs — Worse Without You
11. Pat Green & Cory Morrow — Stuck In The Middle With You
12. Bobby Manriquez — How We Started
13. WSNB — True Love
14. Shane Dwight — Boogie King

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

Being alone / Planning for post-Assad Syria / NASA preps for Mars landing / Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld get coffee / RFK’s secret archive

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. How to be alone
By Tracy Clark-Flory | Salon | Aug. 4
“We all have to learn to be by ourselves, whether it’s after a breakup, a move or a divorce — but how, exactly?”

2. State Department and Pentagon Plan for Post-Assad Syria
By Steven Lee Myers and Thom Shanker | The New York Times | Aug. 4
“Mindful of American mistakes following the invasion of Iraq in 2003, both agencies have created a number of cells to draft plans for what many officials expect to be a chaotic, violent aftermath that could spread instability over Syria’s borders …”

3. Ruins a memento of Iraqi Christians’ glorious past
By Kay Johnson | Associated Press | Aug. 5
“[R]uins have emerged from the sand over the past five years with the expansion of the airport serving the city of Najaf, and have excited scholars who think this may be Hira, a legendary Arab Christian center.”

4. NASA braces for ‘7 minutes of terror’ Mars plunge
By Alicia Chang | Associated Press | Aug. 5
“The Curiosity rover was poised to hit the top of the Martian atmosphere at 13,000 mph. If all goes according to script, it will be slowly lowered by cables inside a massive crater in the final few seconds.”

5. Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee: Larry Eats a Pancake
By Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David | Crackle | July 2012
“Jerry’s special guest is Larry David in the premiere episode of Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee.”

6. He May Be Leader of Peru, but to Outspoken Kin, He’s Just a Disappointment
By William Neuman | The New York Times | Aug. 4
“The president’s brother Ulises, the oldest of the seven Humala children, compared the family’s wranglings — ‘Humala vs. Humala’ is a headline that needs no translation here — to the escapades in ‘Dallas.’ ”

7. Theo Jansen creates new creatures
TED | September 2007
“Artist Theo Jansen demonstrates the amazingly lifelike kinetic sculptures he builds from plastic tubes and lemonade bottles.”

8. Kennedys keep vise-grip on RFK papers
By Bryan Bender | The Boston Globe | Aug. 5
“Scholars and government officials believe the 62 boxes of files covering Kennedy’s three years as attorney general during his brother’s administration could provide insights into critical Cold War decisions on issues ranging from the Cuban missile crisis to Vietnam.”

9. Left for Dead in Virginia
By Ronald S. Coddington | Disunion :: The New York Times | June 28
“George T. Perkins and his Union comrades breathed a collective sigh of relief on the afternoon of June 27, 1862.”

10. Mississippi 1964: Civil Rights and Unrest
By Walter Cronkite | NPR | June 2005
“Walter Cronkite recalls the story of the slaying of three civil rights workers in 1964. Cronkite saw the drama unfold amid two struggles: one for civil rights and another against the Vietnam War.”

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TUNES

My soundtrack for today included:
1. FULL MOON, EMPTY HEART Belly
2. COME TOGETHER The Beatles
3. STEP BY STEP Jesse Winchester
4. ATLANTIC CITY (Live) Bruce Springsteen
5. COME RAIN OR COME SHINE (Unplugged) Don Henley
6. ARE YOU GONNA GO MY WAY (Unplugged) Lenny Kravitz
7. RACING IN THE STREET Bruce Springsteen
8. AGAIN Lenny Kravitz
9. HOUSE OF THE RISING SUN The Animals
10. HELTER SKELTER U2

Recommended reading / viewing / listening

Assad’s next move / Workplace attire / Destroying Istanbul’s treasures / Our obsession with apocalypse / Tech’s most influential women

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. Bashar al-Assad: fight or flight?
By Ian Black | The Guardian | July 20
“After high-profile defections and the loss of four key advisers, the Syrian president’s options are shrinking”

2. Counting Afghanistan’s Dead
By Joshua Foust | The Atlantic | July 20
“Addressing the war’s failings means talking about policy, but before we do that, a reminder of why it matters.”

3. What Not to Wear To Work
By Melissa Korn | At Work :: The Wall Street Journal | July 20
“A new survey shows U.S. adults expressing more outrage at scantily-clad co-workers this year than they did last year.”

4. Destroying Istanbul
By Andrew Finkel | Latitude :: The New York Times | July 20
“Now here’s a bit of hyperbole I wish I didn’t have to defend: the damage now being done to Istanbul rivals the damage done to Constantinople by the Fourth Crusade.”

5. The Ten Most Influential Women in Technology
By Marissa Mayer | Time | July 18
“In 2012, it’s hard to believe that only 19 companies out of the Fortune 500 are led by women.”

6. Will the fight against HIV/AIDS ever end?
Inside Story Americas :: Al Jazeera | July 20
“As scientists and campaigners launch a new drive for a cure we ask how much longer we will be fighting the disease.”

7. Jennifer 8. Lee hunts for General Tso
TED | December 2008
“Reporter Jennifer 8. Lee talks about her hunt for the origins of familiar Chinese-American dishes — exploring the hidden spots where these two cultures have (so tastily) combined to form a new cuisine.”

8. America’s apocalypse obsession
By Julianne Escobedo Shepherd | Alternet and Salon | July 18
“Why are we so fixated on the end of the world?”

9. Stone Links: The Rise of Café Philosophy
By A.C. Lee | Opinionator :: The New York Times | July 3
“Jules Evans … describes an emerging scene in which people from a diverse range of backgrounds gather at cafés, pubs and pizza parlors to tackle the great philosophical questions.”

10. Gulf of Tonkin’s Phantom Attack
By Walter Cronkite | NPR | August 2004
“Faulty Intelligence Played Role in Decision to Engage Viet Cong”

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TUNES

My soundtrack for today included:
1. UNTIL THE END OF THE WORLD U2
2. SUGAR SUGAR The Archies
3. PIANO CONCERTO #22 IN E FLAT, K 482 – 3. ALLEGRO Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
4. EVOLUTION REVOLUTION LOVE Tricky
5. A KISS TO BUILD A DREAM ON Louis Armstrong
6. OUR FADED LOVE Patsy Cline
7. SAVE THE LAST DANCE FOR ME The Drifters
8. HERE COMES THE SUN (Live) Paul Simon & George Harrison
9. SONATA FOR CELLO & PIANO IN G MINOR, OP. 65 Frederic Chopin
10. MINOR SWING Django Reinhardt