In The New York Times today, Lori Gottlieb, a bestselling author, practicisng psychotherapist and contributing editor to The Atlantic Monthlyworries, "Has Obamacare made it un-P.C. to be concerned by a serious burden on a middle-class family’s well-being?"
At the beginning of this year, I had a grand ambition to explore world music and write about it. I got off to a pretty good start and then my year took a turn. For me, music is a happy experience and I haven’t had a particularly happy year. As a results, I’ve had almost zero interest in listening even to my favorites, let alone exploring new musical styles.
But 2009 is ending on a bit of a high note. I’m about to make a big change and in honor of that change, I’m resurrecting the world music series with a post in honor of my soon-to-be new home: Jakarta.
When you think about music and Argentina, do you immediately think tango?
You’re not alone. Argentina is known for unleashing the sexy style on the world in the early twentieth century. Over almost a hundred years, the tango has been an obsession of many, even leading to an explosion of tango-themed vacation tours.
It’s not surprising that few acts out of Papua New Guinea have found international recognition. The country is largely rural and connections are made difficult by the mountains and rainforests. Television is only readily available in the capital of Port Moresby and most of PNG is connected to the outside world only through government radio.
I’m not quite ready to let the inauguration of President Barack Obama be in the past, so this week, I’ve been looking into the music of Kenya, home of Obama’s father.
First up: Ken wa Maria, headliner of the Yatta Orchestra International Band, a popular Kamba act. wa Maria seems to be a bit larger than life, attracting as much attention for his controversial lyrics and his will-he-or-won’t-he-run political ambitions as for his music.
In honor of the 44th President, this week I went looking for some songs about the good ole US of A. There’s actually a current ranking of patriotic songs, which I must admit seems a little bizarre. But people listen to the nose flute, so who am I to judge?
Our resident Czech, Codegen86, tells me that I should spend several weeks sampling Czech music before reaching any sort of general conclusion, and I think he is probably right. But I just don't have that kind of time! I've at least been able to identify what I would consider three different broad categories of modern Czech music, though I'm sure I'm leaving many out.
My New Year’s resolution for 2009 is to keep myself entertained. And, I ask you, what could be more entertaining than launching a worldwide exploration of music together? We’ll be starting our tour in South America—specifically Brazil, because I have a special place in my heart for all things Brazilian.
Befitting such a large and geographically diverse country, the musical styles of Brazil run the gamut from Bossa Nova to Rap to Metal. But my favorite style, not just of Brazil, but of any music anywhere, is Samba.
[....] Linda Stasi, who chronicled Mr. Trump’s up-and-down marriage to Marla Maples in the 1990s for two New York papers, said she could have predicted the presidential agita. “He would plant stories and he would get mad if they didn’t come out exactly as he wanted,” she recalled of earlier dealings with Mr. Trump. “It never occurred to him that he couldn’t control everything.”
Now, Ms. Stasi said, “he is shocked that he is not in control of the press.”
The headlines this month have been alarming. “Steve Bannon’s obsession with a dark theory of history should be worrisome” (Business Insider). “Steve Bannon Believes The Apocalypse Is Coming And War Is Inevitable” (the Huffington Post). “Steve Bannon Wants To Start World War III” (the Nation).
Muhammad Ali Jr., the 44-year old Muslim son of the world-famous boxer who died last year, was held for several hours at Ft. Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport on Feb. 7 when he and his family returned home from a trip to Jamaica.... "This is an outrage," Chris Mancini, a former federal prosecutor and the family's lawyer, told the Miami New Times. "I don't know what is going on with Mr. Trump's claim that his ban is not religion-based.
Ami I deceiving myself, or is this bunch of yahoos committed firmly to a "Clash of Civilizations" (sounds like one of those MOOG Games) model which will not tolerate institutional ambiguity on that point.
KT McFarland was spozed to be gone by now--part of Harward's clash with Trump was his unwillingness to keep her on as demanded and there was troubling vagueness in Spicer's statement that McMaster will have control of his staff, but the hiring and firing will be Trump's-. A state of intolerable internal tension. Today McMaster announced he was keeping her on.
I will venture to say that she or McMaster will not greet the Spring as part of the National Security Advisory arm of President Trump.
[.....] The House of Representatives has refused to investigate either one of the two massive ongoing legal and ethical violations involving the Trump administration: President Trump’s opaque ties (financial and otherwise) to Russia, and his ongoing self-enrichment in office and violations of the Constitution’s Emoluments Clause.
I understand the vehemence. Trump is a demagogue who vilifies and scapegoats refugees, Muslims, undocumented immigrants, racial minorities, who strikes me as a danger to our national security. By all means stand up to him, and point out his lies and incompetence. But let’s be careful about blanket judgments.
My hometown, Yamhill, Ore., a farming community, is Trump country, and I have many friends who voted for Trump. I think they’re profoundly wrong, but please don’t dismiss them as hateful bigots.
....Passengers on Delta Flight 1583 were asked to show their IDs to armed U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents as they stepped off the aircraft onto the jet bridge, according to passengers who snapped photos and posted them online.....The individual was determined not to be on the flight."
ICE has a tip line for reporting things, no cash bounty yet for informers.
To be sure, these realities do not mean any of the various candidates cannot become standout fundraisers, hire top-notch staff or oversee an expanded small-dollar program that makes up for lost ground. It does mean that despite the more progressive slant of the party since November, the practice of traditional party fundraising — something many Democratic activists reject — will need to continue. All those voting for the next head of the DNC should keep that in mind.
Money quote: "the left needs to settle on an overarching narrative to galvanize opposition and offer an alternative vision for the country, primarily geared toward addressing concerns about a rigged economic and political system."
It’s a fine romance. And we’re not just talking about La La Land taking US$12.5 million at the Chinese box office on that most commercialized of Western non-holidays: Valentine’s Day.
Hollywood’s bumpy love affair with China’s foreign film quota has received a double boost. Ahead of key Sino-American talks later this year, the state run Global Times newspaper recently predicted that the current limit of 34 foreign films granted access to the Chinese market per year could go up by a dozen and foreign producers’ take on ticket sales might jump from 25% now to 40%.
David Brock and some of the biggest donors from across the left are rallying behind an effort to stave off a Republican avalanche in state-level races that could bury Democrats for decades.
The effort, affiliated with a previously low-profile group called the State Innovation Exchange (or SiX for short), aims to offset Republican advantages in state-level campaigns, policy debates and looming redistricting fights.