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Preview: KQED's Forum Podcast


KQED’s live call-in program presents balanced discussions of local, state, national, and world issues as well as in-depth interviews with leading figures in politics, science, entertainment, and the arts.

Last Build Date: Mon, 29 May 2017 16:15:41 +0000

Copyright: Copyright © 2016 KQED Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Rebroadcast: Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu Offer Advice in ‘The Book of Joy’

Mon, 29 May 2017 17:00:00 +0000

How would you celebrate your 80th birthday? If you're the Dalai Lama, you invite your friend Archbishop Desmond Tutu to your home to talk about joy, peace and the state of the world today. The two spiritual icons met to celebrate the Dalai Lama's birthday with a week of conversations. Doug Abrams moderated the talks and documented them in "The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World." He joins us this hour to talk about those conversations and why the two men still find reason to be joyful amid unspeakable atrocities.

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Rebroadcast: Neuroscientist Explores the Contradictions of the Teen Brain

Mon, 29 May 2017 16:00:00 +0000

Neuroscientist Frances Jensen says that when her two sons became teenagers, she marveled at their ability to stay focused for a test, yet still commit major lapses in judgment almost daily. The contradictions, she explains, have both emotional and physical roots: teens are more affected by stressful situations than adults, and their brains are years from being fully developed. Jensen joins Forum to talk about her book 'The Teenage Brain: A Neuroscientist's Survival Guide to Raising Adolescents and Young Adults.'

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From Body-Slamming to Briefing Room Bickering: A Look at the Media-Government Relationship

Fri, 26 May 2017 16:00:00 +0000

It's been a rocky few months for journalists. Soon after taking office, President Trump repeatedly called the media "the enemy of the American people," and his advisor Steve Bannon said the media were the Administration's "opposition party." And on Wednesday, the rift between politicians and the press turned violent as Montana Congressional candidate Greg Gianforte body-slammed a reporter for asking about the cost of the GOP health care bill. In this hour we discuss the state of the relationship between the government and the media.

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Lucy Kalanithi Reflects on Love, Mortality and the Moment ‘When Breath Becomes Air’

Fri, 26 May 2017 17:00:00 +0000

When Lucy Kalanithi's 36-year-old husband Paul was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer, the two agreed that they would "keep saying things out loud." This meant that they'd talk openly about Paul's end of life decisions, his hope that Lucy would remarry and their desire to have a child. Stanford neurosurgeon Paul Kalanithi died in 2015 while writing 'When Breath Becomes Air,' a memoir about facing mortality and his emotionally complicated transition from doctor to patient. Lucy Kalanithi, an assistant clinical professor of medicine at Stanford, joins Forum to talk about the book, her late husband and the relationship between love and suffering. And we'd like to hear from you: If you or a loved one have received a terminal prognosis – how did it change how you live?

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The College Lecture? Nobel Laureate Gives it a Failing Grade

Thu, 25 May 2017 17:30:00 +0000

Stanford physics professor and Nobel laureate Carl Wieman wants to transform undergraduate education by ending one of its longest-standing traditions -- the lecture. Wieman has been interested in effective teaching strategies for years. He used to quiz students after lectures and found that only 10 percent of his students were retaining the material. What works better, Wieman's research found, is a practice called active-learning, where students pivot quickly from a short lecture to solving a specific problem. Wieman claims these techniques could double what most students learn but are not implemented because universities are too focused on research and tenure, instead of effective teaching strategies.

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White Supremacists Turn to the Ancient Religion of Odinism

Thu, 25 May 2017 17:00:00 +0000

White supremacists who believe Christianity has been diluted by non-whites are turning to an ancient religion called Odinism, where worshipers embrace ancient Norse gods like Thor and Odin. According to Reveal from the Center for Investigative Reporting, Odinists have been convicted of six cases of domestic terrorism since 2001. Will Carless, a correspondent for Reveal, joins us to explain why the religion is holding wider appeal, particularly for today's white supremacists.

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23 Million More Americans Would Lose Insurance Under GOP Health Bill, Says CBO

Thu, 25 May 2017 16:00:00 +0000

On Wednesday, the Congressional Budget Office released its analysis on the impact of the final version of the American Health Care Act, passed by Republicans in the House earlier this month. The report estimates that compared with Obamacare, the plan would increase the number of uninsured by 23 million over the next decade. But the analysis also finds that the bill would save the federal government $119 billion in the same time period. In more healthcare news, a push for a single-payer program in California met a setback earlier this week when a legislative report put the annual cost of the program at $400 billion—more than double the entire state budget. We'll get the latest on national and state efforts to overhaul healthcare.

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Free Climber Tommy Caldwell on ‘The Push’

Wed, 24 May 2017 17:00:00 +0000

In 2015, Tommy Caldwell and his climbing partner Kevin Jorgeson made history when they completed the first continuous free climb of the Dawn Wall face of El Capitan in Yosemite. Outside Magazine dubbed the granite face "arguably the most difficult ascent in the history of rock climbing," and one reporter likened the feat to climbing plate glass. In his new memoir, "The Push," Caldwell talks about growing up small and uncoordinated, how his dad helped shape him into an extreme athlete, and how he was once kidnapped by armed rebels.

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‘The Trials of Marvin Mutch’: 41 Years in Prison, Proclaiming Innocence

Wed, 24 May 2017 16:30:00 +0000

In 1975, when he was 19 years old, Marvin Mutch was convicted of murder. He didn’t leave prison until 41 years later. It took the efforts of students working on a wrongful conviction project and a series of lawyers to finally win his release. A new KQED News documentary, “The Trials of Marvin Mutch,” looks at the circumstantial evidence that landed Mutch behind bars, his life in prison and what his case reveals about the parole system. Co-producers and reporters Adam Grossberg and Alex Emslie join us to talk about the film and what Marvin’s life is like now that he’s free.

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Political News Roundup with NPR’s Scott Horsley

Wed, 24 May 2017 16:00:00 +0000

President Donald Trump's budget plan, unveiled on Tuesday, would make deep cuts to social programs while boosting military spending. How will the proposal fare on Capitol Hill? We check in with NPR White House correspondent Scott Horsley on the budget, the president's trip abroad and other late-breaking political developments.

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At Least 22 Killed in Manchester Attack

Tue, 23 May 2017 17:00:00 +0000

We'll bring you the latest on the concert explosion in England that killed at least 19 people and injured dozens of others on Monday night.

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San Francisco Chronicle Investigation: California Foster Shelters are Criminalizing Children

Tue, 23 May 2017 17:30:00 +0000

A 14-year-old held in juvenile hall for fours days for poking a caregiver with a candy cane. A youth who spent the night in jail for clinging to a staff member's leg and not letting go. According to a new San Francisco Chronicle investigation, in 2015 and 2016 California's foster youth shelters funneled hundreds of children into the criminal justice system for minor incidents that rarely caused serious injury. We discuss the investigation, and the prevalence and effects of the shelters' reliance on law enforcement in dealing with troubled youth.

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Tom Nichols on ‘The Death of Expertise’

Tue, 23 May 2017 16:00:00 +0000

Climate change denialism, the anti-vaccine movement and the spread of fake news are all symptoms of a growing problem: America’s distrust of experts. That's according to author and Naval War College professor Tom Nichols. He’ll join us-in studio to talk about his new book, "The Death of Expertise: The Campaign Against Established Knowledge and Why it Matters."

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Financial Times’ Gideon Rachman on ‘Easternization’ and the Declining Power of the West

Mon, 22 May 2017 16:00:00 +0000

The surging economic power of China and other Asian nations, coupled with the West's diminishing influence, is redefining the world order, according to Financial Times commentator Gideon Rachman. He sees events like Brexit and the election of Donald Trump as signs that the West is adapting to -- as opposed to shaping -- the global economy. Rachman joins us to talk about America's loosening grip on world affairs and his book "Easternization: Asia's Rise and America's Decline From Obama to Trump and Beyond." We'll also talk to Rachman about current U.S. economic and foreign policy as President Trump embarks on his first overseas trip.

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Cathryn Jakobson Ramin on the ‘Crooked’ Back Pain Industry

Mon, 22 May 2017 17:00:00 +0000

The cost of treating back pain in the U.S. exceeds $100 billion each year -- and a good chunk of that money gets spent on worthless treatments. That's according to journalist and investigative reporter Cathryn Jakobson Ramin, who suffers from chronic back pain herself. Ramin's new book, "Crooked," pulls back the curtain on the back pain industry and provides strategies for navigating the plethora of treatment options. What questions do you have?

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Director Mira Nair Revives ‘Monsoon Wedding’ for Berkeley Rep

Fri, 19 May 2017 17:00:00 +0000

When filmmaker Mira Nair shot "Monsoon Wedding" in 2002, she didn't realize the movie about an Indian family preparing to celebrate an arranged marriage would become a cult classic. Nair has turned the film into a musical, currently playing at the Berkeley Repertory Theatre. The director, whose credits include "Mississippi Masala," "The Namesake" and Disney's "Queen of Katwe," joins us to talk about her career and her decision to re-imagine "Monsoon Wedding" for the stage.

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Techno-Sociologist Zeynep Tufekci on the ‘Power and Fragility of Networked Protest’

Fri, 19 May 2017 16:00:00 +0000

Zeynep Tufekci has been studying and participating in global social movements for more than a decade. Nowadays, she says, a tweet can unleash a global awareness campaign, and a Facebook post can mobilize millions. But, she argues, the political achievements of many modern social movements, such as Occupy, are not proportional to the energy and crowds they inspired. Tufekci, a ‘techno-sociologist’ and author of the new book “Twitter and Tear Gas,” joins us to talk about networked social movements and why some fail where others succeed.

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Justice Department Names Former FBI Director Mueller as Special Counsel for Russia Investigation

Thu, 18 May 2017 16:00:00 +0000

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein on Wednesday announced that the Department of Justice has named former FBI director Robert Mueller special counsel for its investigation into Russian election tampering. The announcement comes amid controversy over President Trump's firing of FBI director James Comey, who according to the New York Times, wrote a memo stating that Trump asked him to shut down the investigation into former National Security Advisor Mike Flynn's Russia ties. Mueller, who served as FBI chief from 2001 to 2013, is "authorized to prosecute federal crimes" arising from the Russia probe, according to the DOJ order. We bring you the latest updates and take your legal questions.

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Bill Moyers on Trump, Comey, and His New Film ‘Rikers’

Thu, 18 May 2017 17:00:00 +0000

Journalist and filmmaker Bill Moyers joins us to talk about the latest developments in Washington, including the appointment of a special counsel for the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election. We'll also hear about his new PBS documentary about Rikers Island, New York's largest prison.

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As California Moves to Early Release, U.S. Attorney General Orders Stiffer Penalties

Thu, 18 May 2017 16:30:00 +0000

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a memo last week instructing federal prosecutors to seek the maximum sentences possible. The order reverses Obama-era guidelines that limited penalties for low-level and nonviolent offenders. The federal policy change comes as California begins implementation of Proposition 57, a measure passed last fall that allows early release of those in prison for some nonviolent felonies. We'll look at how both policy changes could affect California and the ideological and practical contradictions they raise.

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President Trump Reportedly Told Ex-FBI Chief Comey to Shut Down Flynn Investigation

Wed, 17 May 2017 16:00:00 +0000

President Donald Trump pushed ex-FBI director James Comey to scrap the investigation into former National Security Advisor Mike Flynn's Russia ties, the New York Times reported Tuesday. The Times cited a memo consisting of Comey's notes from his conversation with Trump. James Chaffetz, Republican chairman of the House oversight committee, said on Tuesday he will seek copies of Comey's memos. We'll talk with UC Berkeley political scientist Thomas Mann and Washington Post reporter Matt Zapotosky about the latest news out of the White House and about whether the president may have obstructed justice.

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FCC to Take Preliminary Vote to Undo Obama’s Open Internet Order

Wed, 17 May 2017 16:30:00 +0000

Federal Communications Commission will hold a first vote Thursday on chairperson Ajit Pai's proposal to eliminate current net neutrality rules. Pai's plan would repeal 2015 regulations that give the FCC the authority to regulate Internet Service Providers (ISPs). The current regulations prevent ISPs from selectively charging tolls or slowing down service for specific websites or apps. We’ll discuss the effects of the proposed repeal on consumers, ISPs and emerging start-ups.

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Nick Bilton Investigates ‘Dread Pirate Roberts’ and the Origins of the Deep Web

Wed, 17 May 2017 17:00:00 +0000

In 2013, FBI agents arrested 29-year-old Ross Ulbricht, otherwise known as "Dread Pirate Roberts," the mastermind behind an underground website where people could buy and sell drugs, firearms and other illegal items. But how exactly did Ulbricht, an Eagle Scout from Texas, become the head of Silk Road, a multimillion dollar Deep Web marketplace? Journalist Nick Bilton set out to answer that question in his new book, "American Kingpin: The Epic Hunt for the Criminal Mastermind Behind the Silk Road." Bilton joins us to discuss his findings and the fascinating and illicit world of the Deep Web.

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Report: President Trump Leaked Highly Sensitive Intel to Russians

Tue, 16 May 2017 16:00:00 +0000

President Donald Trump revealed classified intelligence about ISIS to the Russian ambassador and foreign minister in a meeting last week, according to the Washington Post. President Trump is already facing widespread criticism for his firing of FBI Director James Comey in the midst of the bureau's investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, who was present at the meeting between Trump and the Russian officials, called the Washington Post's story "false," saying that intelligence sources and threats were not discussed. We'll bring you the latest developments.

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Robert Sapolsky Tackles Best and Worst of Human Nature in ‘Behave’

Tue, 16 May 2017 17:00:00 +0000

Why do humans behave the way we do? To answer this age-old question, Stanford University biologist Robert Sapolsky spent ten years connecting the dots between a wide range of scientific disciplines. The result is his new book "Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst," which probes into the deepest mysteries of human behavior, from xenophobia and tribalism to morality and justice.

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