Dr. Iresha Goonesinghe, specializing in Cardiology and Internal Medicine, with a former private practice in Ridgecrest, CA, speaks as CEO at Compassionate Doctors. With her remarkable blend of life-long individual practice of meditation and clinical grounding, Dr. Goonesinghe’s work has always been focused on root causes in medical situations. She previously launched a couple of blogs: PeoplePower77.Blogspot.com and UnitingTheUSA.blogspot.com, most recently she’s here for us with Compassionate Doctors in CA, focusing on Helping Hand not for profit work and Vipassana Meditation. We’ll revisit together some of what she brought in May 2017, and see what this #BeMyBestMovement is all about.
Music credits: Chimora, “Africano Americano,” Sounds of Africa – album; Alice Coltrane, “Vrindavana Sanchara,” Spiritual Eternal: The Coltrane Warner Bros. Studio Recordings – album.
Jackie Menter, founder and executive director of the Orange County Jewish Coalition for Refugees, picks up where we left on her last appearance on 6/13. She starts with what we were treated to on the June 20 World Refugee Day Open House held at the nearby Merage Jewish Community Center in their Holocaust Memorial Garden; then plot the complicated immigration infrastructure that is being restored in the Biden administration; then she’ll conclude with some assignments for how listeners to get involved.
Music credits: Chimora, “Africano Americano,” Sounds of Africa – album; Charlie Haden-Liberation Music Orchestra, “America The Beautiful,” Not in Our Name – album.
For the full hour are human rights activist and veteran journalist Colin Stewart – and writer, actor journalist Rob Salerno who cover the scope and background of the Anti-Homosexuality Law of 2023 adopted in Uganda May 30th this year after many years of proposals, and then draw actual connections from Orange County. An essential guide toward following trends and specific cases, offering useful tools is: https://76crimes.com/.
Music credits: Chimora, “Africano Americano,” Sounds of Africa – album; Dobet Gnahoré, “Dala,” Na Afriki – album.
Today my guests are: Alexis Tutunnique and Elizaveta Gogidze, both principal dancers with the United Ukrainian Ballet Company, an assemblage of refugee dancers from all over Ukraine, who will perform at our Segerstrom Hall, 6/29-7/2nd, in Alexei Ratmansky’s version of the ghost story “Giselle, with surprising nuances and a hopeful ending in place of the usual bleak one. They’ve performed in the Netherlands, the UK, Singapore, Australia and the US; we are fortunate to have them in our neighborhood. These artists express what they are doing, and what’s on their minds. Details for tickets and times are available at: https://www.scfta.org/events/2023/united-ukrainian-ballet.
Music credits: Chimora, “Africano Americano,” Sounds of Africa – album; and Vsevolod Zaderatsky, “Preludes and Fugues in a minor,” performed by Irma Klimenko.
Note to listeners: In 1937 Ukrainian composer Vsevolod Zaderatsky (1891-1953) was one of those who fell under the Great Terror – the most brutal of Stalinist repressions. In earlier years all his compositions were destroyed to render him silent. Zaderatsky was accused of being a teacher for young Tsarevich, of formalism – a fraught word, which means one’s music is not approved by the Party – and of “anti-Soviet statements” that musical life in Ukraine was superior to that in Yaroslavl (Russia), where he worked before. This prelude and fugue was written during his imprisonment in GULAG – on fragments of telegram forms, without access to any musical instrument – and performed publicly only in 2014, 75 years after the composer’s death. Please listen to the whole work.
We open with Melissa Saavedra Gill, founder and CEO of Steamy Lit, prior to the book convention (August 18-19) in Anaheim celebrating diversity in romance and the romance genre. Representation, relevance, and agency all are on the menu. In the second segment (minute approx. minute 35:23), Jackie Mentor with OC Jewish Coalition for Refugees will return in advance of her organization’s June 20 World Refugee Day Open House, to which the public is most welcome. Please rsvp to: https://tinyurl.com/WRDRSVP.
Music credits: Chimora, “Africano Americano,” Sounds of Africa – album; Buena Vista Social Club, Lorena, “Chan Chan,” Buena Vista Social Club cover; Souad Massi, “Hayati,” Raoui – album.
Gloria Mark, UCI Professor of Informatics, gets the full hour to talk about her latest book, Attention Span: A Groundbreaking Way to Restore Balance, Happiness and Productivity. It’s published by Hanover Square Press. Luckily there’s a few people left with long enough attention spans to write about it, so we can have a little agency to regain, shore up the decline of this capacity, and achieve some balance. Copies are available at her website gloriamark.com, or your favorite independent book dealer – eventually and hopefully at the campus’ The Hill.
Music credits: Chimora, “Africano Americano,” Sounds of Africa – album; Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, “In Motion” Social Network – film.
For this 2023 Memorial Day edition, my guests return in these reprised interviews, with emphasis on prize. The is a segment of my longer interview with Air Force veteran Don Fisher who served during WWII. In his later years, Don understood the value he had as a relic of that war period, considering his experience in training, serving, and surviving those years, so he began offering his stories to the National Archive, and later shared on “Ask A Leader.” The full program is available on the 10/09/2010 episode at: https://askaleader.com/?p=826. Don Fisher died in October 2015 at the age of 97. The second segment is the full 25 minute interview with Don Lipstein, then a volunteer at Tragedy Assistance for Survivors (TAPS) talking about surviving his son Joshua who at the age of 23 died by suicide in March 2011 after serving in Iraq as a Navy Casualty Assistance Officer. This interview is also available, 6/25/13 at: https://askaleader.com/?p=53. Don Lipstein continues his connection with this humble radio program and has moved on as a consultant, having founded a new firm, Imagine Family Recovery, which offers services to families who survive a loved one who dies by suicide after military service.
Music credits: Chimora, “Africano Americano,” Sounds of Africa – album; César Franck, “Le Chausseur maudit,” performed by BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Tadaaki Otaka conducting; Fabrizio Bossa, Max Ionata, Roc Flowers, and Stefano de Donato, “Mood Variations,” Ovision – album.
Finally, Irvine, the largest city in California to have at-large city council members, is transitioning toward creating distinct city council districts from which the candidates would run. The City will also add 2 seats to the City Council. Our guide to this process for the full hour is demographer Justin Levitt, retained by Irvine’s City Council. He lays out the process under way, wherein the City of Irvine is drawing these 6 council districts for the voters’ approval on the Spring 2024 Primary election ballot. The November 2024 general election vote would include voters in 4 of those districts. Residents of Irvine are welcome to participate in this process by spending time at: https://drawirvine.org/.
Music credits: Chimora, “Africano Americano,” Sounds of Africa – album; Rodney Whitaker, “Minorabilia,” Oasis – album.
Taking the heat down a few notches are today’s guests: Mark Nelson, engineer and founder and managing director of Radiant Energy Group; and A. J. Shaka, UCI chemistry professor and director of the UCI Nuclear Reactor Facility. We go local and zoom out to international cases with their consideration of the viability of nuclear power in the energy mix, with the goal of reducing greenhouse gases overall. An extension of this interview is provided below.
Music credits: Chimora, “Africano Americano,” Sounds of Africa – album; Terry Riley, “A Rainbow in Curved Air.”
Virginia Parks, UCI professor of Urban Planning and Public Policy and director of UCI’s Labor Center, presents her recent findings on how the closure of a Marathon refinery affected its displaced workers; a story of the challenge in transitioning to renewable. The full report is available at the U.C. Berkeley Labor Center.
In the second segment (approx minute 36), we continue coverage of South Coast Rep after their completion of last week’s Pacific Playwrights Festival, with playwright and performer Michael Shayan. He brings phenomenal story-telling in his world premiere of avaaz, running now through May 27 at the Segerstrom Stage in Costa Mesa, https://www.scr.org/plays/productions/22-23-season/avaaz/.
Music credits: Chimora, “Africano Americano,” Sounds of Africa – album; Laura Love, “If I Knew,” Octoroon – album; Jalal Hemati, “Baba Karam.”