The Times: Daily news from the L.A. Times

By Los Angeles Times

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“The Times” is a new podcast from the Los Angeles Times hosted by columnist Gustavo Arellano along with reporters from our diverse newsroom. Every weekday, our podcast will take listeners beyond the headlines, with our West Coast outlook on the world. News, entertainment, the environment, immigration, politics, the criminal justice system, the social safety net, food and culture — “The Times” exists at the epicenter of it all. Through interviews and original stories, “The Times” is the audio guide you need to understand the day’s news, the world and how California shapes it. The first episode premiered Monday May 3, everywhere podcasts are available.

Episode Date
Meet our Masters of Disasters

The California dream comes with more than its fair share of disasters — earthquakes, wildfires, fire tornadoes, eroding coasts, and so much more. The L.A. Times has a disasters unit to cover them, and our reporters are some of the best in the business. So we invited three of them — Rong-Gong Lin II, Rosanna Xia, and Alex Wigglesworth — to talk about how to prepare for the unpreparable. Think of this as a regular monthly series about calamities, with our Masters of Disasters as your guides.

May 13, 2021
A look at El Salvador's meme-loving, press-hating autocratic president Nayib Bukele

A populist becomes his country’s president with a historic win. He’s a brash outsider, a relative newcomer, and he promises to drain the swamp. No more politics as usual, he says, because his country is under attack — and he’s here to save it. But this new president begins to upend democracy. Ousts his opponents to consolidate power. Declares he wants to change the country’s constitution to suit him. And trolls his haters on social media all along the way. These are the hallmarks of Nayib Bukele, the president of El Salvador. If Bukele succeeds in his power grabs, it has big implications for the United States. Today, L.A. Times Latin America correspondent Kate Linthicum and El Faro reporter Jimmy Alvarado take us into the current crisis in El Salvador and explain how we got here. Author Roberto Lovato also talks about how Bukele’s actions affect the Salvadoran diaspora in the United States.

May 12, 2021
What California's high school athletes can teach us about coping with COVID-19

California's high-school athletes were bona fide ballers during the pandemic. They trained alone or over Zoom during lockdowns and are now facing off against each other on the field. How these student athletes coped with COVID-19 this past year offers lessons in resilience and ingenuity that all of us can learn. Today, we learn how the football team at Loyola High School in Los Angeles came together to help teammate Josh Morales and his family survive COVID-19. Then, we’ll chat with L.A. Times’ longtime high school sports columnist Eric Sondheimer about the bigger challenges ahead for young athletes.

May 11, 2021
The origins of California's recall fever

Over the next couple of months, media from across the world will descend on California to cover the possible recall of Gov. Gavin Newsom. There have been only two successful recalls of governors in U.S. history — including the recall of California Gov. Gray Davis in 2003. Why is this famously liberal state so prone to conservative voter uprisings? It’s part of a decades-long trend that has rocked local and state politics, a trend that’s gone on to influence the rest of the U.S. Today, we examine the roots of the upcoming recall election against California Gov. Gavin Newsom with L.A. Times politics columnist Mark Z. Barabak and Randy Economy, one of the architects of the Recall Gavin 2020 campaign.

Further reading:

How three political novices with turbulent pasts helped spark the Newsom recall 

Column: Good news for Gavin Newsom — California is no longer the place it was in 2003

From the Archives: Death Ends Career of Sen. Hiram Johnson

May 10, 2021
How one mom learned to stop worrying and love video games during the pandemic

Video games have always been a point of division between L.A. Times science reporter Deborah Netburn and her 12-year-old son. Then the pandemic hit, and the gap between them seemed to widen. In today's episode, Netburn takes over the mic to share her journey from ignorance to understanding. And she does it all by playing video games.

More reading:
Video games came between me and my son in the pandemic. Could they bring us back together?

May 07, 2021
One final reckoning for the Golden Globes

Stacy Perman and Josh Rottenberg cover the film industry for the L.A. Times. In February, just a week before the annual Golden Globes ceremony, they published a bombshell investigation about the operations of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. The findings were ugly: Self dealing. Ethical lapses. No Black members. And the HFPA continued to make a series of missteps. Now, a group of powerful publicists in Hollywood have declared that they’ll keep their clients away from the Globes -- unless the institution announces real reforms. And this week, the HFPA finally did. We’ll hear from Perman, Rottenberg, and Kjersti Flaa, the Norwegian reporter who took the HFPA to court.

More reading:

Golden Globes leaders propose major reforms after Times investigation

Golden Globes organization vowed to change. Then came turmoil. What went wrong?

Golden Globes voters in tumult: Members accuse Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. of self-dealing, ethical lapses

May 06, 2021
The forgotten, radical roots of Cinco de Mayo

Few take Cinco de Mayo seriously. For many of us, today is about restaurant specials on nachos and margaritas. Too many white people wearing sombreros and fake mustaches. But for Axios reporter Russell Contreras, May 5 takes him back to growing up in Houston, where a forgotten riot over the police death of a Mexican American in 1978 turned Cinco de Mayo from farce to reflection. He talks about the forgotten, radical roots of the holiday loved by few and celebrated mostly with drinko.

More Reading:

Op-Ed: Cinco de Mayo -- a truly Mexican American holiday

The Real Meaning of Cinco de Mayo Celebration

May 05, 2021
The Uyghur genocide hits California

California businesses are starting to reopen, and for Bughra Arkin, owner of Dolan Uyghur Restaurant in Alhambra, keeping his restaurant open is also about saving his culture. Arkin belongs to an ethnic Muslim minority in China known as the Uyghurs. Their homeland, Xinjiang, is roughly the size of Iran. The famous Silk Road ran through it. For a long time, the region operated under its own local governments, outside the eyes of the Chinese Communist party. But in 2009, things began to change in Xinjiang. Arkin remembers parties ending earlier and earlier. Then people started disappearing. He says young Uyghurs were forcibly taken to inland China to work in factories. The houses and farmland they left behind were seized by the Communist government, which began encouraging the majority Han Chinese to move in. Recently, the world has increasingly decried China’s treatment of Uyghurs. Chinese officials deny any wrongdoing, but the United States and other nations around the globe have declared their actions a “genocide.” We speak with Arkin about his family's experience with the Chinese government, which includes the detention and disappearance of his father. We also talk to L.A. Times reporter Johana Bhuiyan about a company that the Chinese government has used to track Uyghurs and its efforts to expand in the United States.

More Reading: 

Major camera company can sort people by race, alert police when it spots Uighurs

‘They want to erase us.’ California Uighurs fear for family members in China

Review: At Dolan’s Uyghur Cuisine, a taste of northwest China’s cultural crossroads

May 04, 2021
Federal judge to Los Angeles: House your homeless, or else

Among everything that COVID-19 made worse, there is nothing more dire — or more visible — than its impact on homelessness. Over 66,000 people in Los Angeles County are homeless. It’s an issue that has bedeviled L.A., the land of sunshine and dreams, for decades. Everyone seems to have an idea on how to solve it. None seem to work. Then last month, a federal judge issued an order: House everyone in skid row, the historical epicenter of homelessness in Los Angeles. House everyone by October — or else. We speak with L.A. Times housing reporter Ben Oreskes and the Rev. Andy Bales, who runs Union Rescue Mission on skid row, about a move that could test whether there’s enough political will to solve homelessness once and for all.

More reading: Judicial overreach? Some say judge went too far in ordering L.A. to clear skid row

May 03, 2021
Introducing The Times: A daily news podcast from the Los Angeles Times

Hosted by Gustavo Arellano, “The Times: Daily news from the L.A. Times” will bring you the world through the eyes of the West Coast. Expect award-winning reporting, hard-hitting investigations and random randomness from the biggest newspaper west of the Mississippi right to your ears. Whether it’s farmworkers, Silicon Valley, Hollywood or car chases, we’ll give you deep dives and snippets, rants and discourse, laughers and weepers, with a diversity of voices and a bunch of drama and desmadre. Our first episode premieres Monday May 3. Learn more at

Apr 16, 2021