Thompson, Mike — October 2007 Interview

Mike Thompson represents the First Congressional District of California, including the North Coast and Mendocino County, the home of Radio Curious, in the United States House of Representatives. In this interview recorded in his Washington, D.C. office on October 11, 2007, we discuss the war, its funding, medicare, marijuana and children’s health insurance. The House of Representatives was not able to overturn the president’s veto of the children’s health insurance program in a vote that occurred after this interview.  This program was originally broadcast October 24, 2007.

Mike Thompson recommends “Blackwater: The Rise of the World’s Most Powerful Mercenary Army,” by Jeremy Scahill.

Click here to begin listening.

Wattenburger, Jim — Who Should Control Rural Growth, Corporations or Citizens?

Should a shopping mall and a large residential development occur adjacent to the city of Ukiah, California? The city and many people fear this development will result in the loss of a unique, rural small town in northern California.  Mendocino County Supervisor Jim Wattenburger discusses his position in support of these projects, and about the legalization of marijuana in two programs recorded September 23, 2007, and the broadcast September 26, and October 3, 2007.

Jim Wattenburger recommends “Undaunted Courage,” by Stephen A. Ambrose.


Click here to begin listening to part one.

Click here to begin listening to part two.

Flatow, Ira — Science Changes

The chance to interview another interviewer is an opportunity I like to take. A chance came on September 4, 2007, when I was able to visit with Ira Flatow, the host of “Science Friday,” a part of Talk of the Nation, on NPR. We talked about some ideas and concepts he raises in his new book, “Present at the Future: From Evolution to Nanotechnology, Candid and Controversial Conversations on Science and Nature.”  I think that after thirty-five years as a science journalist, Ira Flatow has seen enough to know unexpected changes are in order. He refers to that at the close of the introduction to his book and writes,

“After watching science do its thing for a while, you realize knowledge is really a moving target. What we know today will probably be wrong tomorrow. And science is that tool for discovery. When science tells us something, chances are that it will tell us something different a few years from now.”

And that’s where Ira Flatow and I began our conversation, which was originally broadcast September 5, 2007.

His website is and the book he recommends is “The World Without Us,” by Alan Weisman.

Click here to begin listening.

Shoemaker, Richard & Vogel, Barry Esq. — Citizen Effort to Combat Big Box Takeover of a Small, Rural Community

Contrary to the five to zero decision by the Ukiah City Council reccomending a No Vote, Medocino County Supervisor Jim Wattenburger, whoes district solely comprises the City of Ukiah, voted yes creating a board majority to further investigate the development of a major shopping center adjacent to Ukiah, a small, tranquil, rural community.  In this conversation Richard Shoemaker, a former member of the Board of Supervisors from the Ukiah district, and attorney and veteran board watcher Barry Vogel (host and producer of Radio Curious) discuss the unusual anomalies of this event.  This program was originally broadcast on August 22, 2007.

The book Richard Shoemaker recommends is “Ripples From the Zambezi,” by Ernesto Sirolli.  Barry Vogel recommends “Big Box Swindle,” by Stacy Mitchell.

Click here to begin listening.

Borden, Carl — Potential Problems Of Employment Of Illegal Aliens

In this edition we discuss the “No Match” rule established by the Bush administration on August 10th, 2007. If a person is employed and the employer sends in the employment payment records with a social security number that doesn’t match the name on the social security number according to the Social Security Administration, A “No Match” letter will be sent to the employer that says “fix it.”  To discuss this problem and the possible effects it has in California, we visited with Attorney Carl Borden, an associate counsel for the California Farm Bureau Federation, in his offices in Sacramento, California on August 20th, 2007.

The book recommended by Carl Borden is “Overcoming The Fear (of Death)” by David Cole Gordon

Click here to begin listening

John Pinches — All Politics are Local Including Marijuana

The concept that all politics are local is shown in this interview with Mendocino County Supervisor John Pinches in our August 7, 2007 interview on growing, use and “legalization” of marijuana.

Click here to begin listening.

Ferguson, Charles — Will This War Ever End?

“The Endless War,” a movie released in late July 2007, written, directed and produced by Charles Ferguson, depicts the blunders and ill-prepared manner in which the United States initiated and carried out the war against Iraq. This full-length feature film juxtaposes the statements and actions of the Washington leadership of the war, which at the outset failed to include President Bush – the Commander-in-Chief, with the leadership’s actions and grievous consequences that followed.  Charles Ferguson holds a Ph.D. in political science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has extensive experience in foreign policy analysis, and lives and works in the San Francisco Bay area. When I spoke with him on July 20, 2007 we began with his explanation how the war and the occupation of Iraq were shaped by an extremely small group of people In Washington D.C., with limited foreign policy and post war occupation experience.

The film he recommends is “The Lives of Others,” a story about East Germany under the community regime.


Click here to begin listening.


Rosin, Hanna — God’s Harvard

Since 2000, ambitious young evangelicals have made their way to Patrick Henry College, a small Christian school near Washington, D.C. Most of them are home schoolers whose idealism and discipline put the average American teenager to shame. At “God’s Harvard” they are groomed to become tomorrow’s elite, dispatched to the front lines of politics, entertainment and science to “take back a godless nation.” Hanna Rosin, author of “God’s Harvard: A Christian College on a Mission to Save America,” visits the nerve center of the evangelical movement and describes who they are, their background, goals and desires.

The book Hanna Rosin recommends is “The Golden Compass,” by Philip Pullman.

Click here to begin listening

Anderson, Bruce — The Reporter Interviewed

The Anderson Valley Advertiser is an iconoclastic newspaper originating weekly from Boonville, Mendocino County, California, edited and published by Bruce Anderson, whose name is merely coincidental with the name of the Anderson Valley. The masthead of the AVA, as it is sometimes called, says, “Newspapers should have no friends,” and “Fan the Flames of Discontent.” After a three-year hiatus, beginning when Anderson sold the AVA and attempted to establish a newspaper elsewhere, he repurchased the AVA and returned to Boonville on July 1, 2007 to write again. We met in the studios of Radio Curious on July 13, 2007 and talked about why he left Mendocino County, what he did while he was gone, how he reckons with the aggravated relationships he created with some people in years past, and what the readers can expect now that he again buys ink by the barrel.


The books Bruce Anderson recommends are those by Rebecca Solnit.


 Click here to begin listening.


Marshall, Joseph III — The End of a Nation: the Lakota Tribe

Independence unfortunately comes and goes, frequently under the guise of independence for other people. And independence is today’s topic. In this two-part Radio Curious interview, recorded on June 29, and broadcasted on July 4 and July 11, 2007, we visit the concept of independence as seen from the Lakota point of view. The Lakota nation was made up of the largest known group of North American native people and encompassed a large portion of the northern plains in what is now Montana, Wyoming, North and South Dakota. Our guest is Joseph M. Marshall, III, author if “The Day The World Ended at Little Bighorn, a Lakota History.” Growing up on the Rosebud Sioux Indian Reservation, where his first language was Lakota, Marshall is a historian, storyteller and author whose work shares the history of his people. I spoke with Joseph Marshall when he visited San Francisco, California. We began our discussion when I asked him to describe what turned out to be the largest and last gathering of the Lakota people when they met at Little Bighorn in July of 1876.

The books Joseph Marshall recommends are “The World We Used to Live in: Remembering the Powers of the Medicine Men,” by Vine Deloria and”The Snow Walker,” by Farley Mowat.

Click here to begin listening to part one.

Click here to begin listening to part two.