Political Interviews --


Dr. Ken Alibek

Soviet Germ Warfare

Bio-Hazard: The Chilling Story of the Largest Covert Biological Weapons Program in the World -- Told From Inside by the Man Who Ran it

Biological warfare is the use of weapons that cause death by disease.  The largest and most sophisticated biological weapons program in the world, which cultivated and stockpiled anthrax virus, brucellosis, the plague and genetically altered strains of small pox, employed more than 6000 people at over 100 facilities in the former Soviet Union.  For 15 years, ending in 1992, Dr. Ken Alibek, a doctor of medicine and a Ph.D. in microbiology, was the scientific leader of Bio-Preparat, the civilian branch of that secret biological weapons program, masquerading as a pharmaceutical company.  In 1992, Dr. Alibek defected to the United States.  Several years later, he wrote “Bio-Hazard,” a book detailing the development of biological weapons, the horrors of his former life and why he chose to defect.  This is a two-part program with Dr. Ken Alibek, recorded in 1999.

Dr. Ken Alibek recommends "Prevent," by Richard Preston & "Vector," by Robin Cook.

Originally Broadcast: May 11, 1999 & May 18, 1999

Click here to begin listening to Part One.

Click here to begin listening to Part Two.


Dr. Elizabeth Allen

Changes in Segregation Since 1952

In May 1954, the United States Supreme Court, unanimously declared, ”segregation in public education is a denial of the equal protection of the law.”  This is a two-part discussion about the aftermath of that decision.  Our guest is Dr. Elizabeth Allen, a Professor of Nursing at the University of Michigan.  As a high school student, Dr. Allen was one of the first African-American students to integrate West Virginia high schools in 1957.

Dr. Elizabeth Allen recommends "The Price of Loyalty," by David Suskind with former US Secretary of Treasury Paul O'Neil.

Originally Broadcast: May 4, 2004 & May 18, 2004

Click here to begin listening to Part One.

Click here to begin listening to Part Two.


Tom Allman

The Sheriff and Marijuana

Marijuana, some say, is on the lips of many people here in Mendocino County, California, and likely many other places throughout the world, to some with pleasure and to others with distaste.  Nonetheless it doesn’t seem that marijuana will go away.  Not withstanding federal laws prohibiting use and possession of marijuana, the people of the state of California adopted the Compassionate Use Act in 1996 and in November 2000, the voters of Mendocino County approved a resolution by a vote of 58% to 42% to decriminalize the personal use of marijuana.  In this edition of Radio Curious we visit with Tom Allman the Sheriff of Mendocino County to discuss the enforcement of the many conflicting marijuana laws.  Estimates of the value of the crop produced in Mendocino County vary from five to ten billion dollars.  We began when I asked the Sheriff to comment on this estimate.

Tom Allman recommends "The Hunt For Red October," by Tom Clancy.

Originally Broadcast: June 19, 2007

Click here to begin listening.


Dr. Richard Alston

The Economics of Party Politics

After the Democratic National Convention and the Republican National Convention in 1992, Richard M. Alston, who was then chairman of the Economics Department at Webber State University in Ogden, Utah, sent a political survey to the delegates to that convention.  This survey concerned the perceptions of convention delegates regarding economic issues in the United States.  As a delegate to the Democratic National Convention I was sent one his surveys, and decided to ask Professor Alston for an interview.  In our interview we discussed the survey and what information he hoped to ascertain with it as well as the role of economists in academic institutions in America. This program was originally broadcast in November of 1992, when Radio Curious was called Government, Politics and Ideas.

Originally Broadcast: November 30, 1992

Click here to begin listening.


Bruce Anderson

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.

Bruce Anderson recommends books by Rebecca Solnit.

Originally Broadcast: July 17, 2007

Click here to begin listening.


Steven Antler and Keith Faulder

A Lawsuit To Be District Attorney

After District Attorney Norm Vroman died in September 2006 after his name could not removed from the ballot, Keith Faulder, the interim DA appointed by the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors, sued Mendocino County seeking to void the November 8, 2006 general election for DA and to require that a special election be held.  Former Deputy District Attorney Meredith Lintott received the most votes in the June primary election and was also on the November 2006  ballot along with Vroman.  The California Court of Appeals upheld Faulder's claim which Lintott and the County appealed to the California Supreme Court.  This edition of Radio Curious discusses the history and status of this unique case in interviews with Faulder and Steve Antler, Lintott's attorney.

Keith Faulder recommends "Theodore Rex," by Edmund Morris.

Steven Antler recommends "October 1964," by David Halberstram.

Originally Broadcast: November 29, 2006

Click here to begin listening.


Bettina Aptheker

The Personal is the Political

Tapestries of Life: Women's Work, Women's Consciousness, and the Meaning of Daily Experience

Political intimacy is closely related to personal intimacy, just as social change is related to personal change.   In 1997 Bettina Aptheker, the author of Tapestries of Life: Women’s Work, Women’s Consciousness, and the Meaning of Daily Experience, was a professor of women’s studies at the University of California at Santa Cruz, and a person who is clear and open about identifying herself as a lesbian.  When we spoke in February of 1997, we explored the relationship of personal intimacy and political intimacy.

Bettina Aptheker recommends "Ceremony," by Leslie Marmon Philco.

Originally Broadcast: February 17, 1997

Click here to begin listening.


John Arquilla

Networks and Netwars

The war that the United States has invoked in what is often called the "War On Terror" is unusual in many ways. One of those ways is that this war is being fought against a network that is spread out in many unsuspecting and obscure places.  It is not being fought as many wars have been in the past, directly against another county.  Dr. John Arquilla, is a professor of defense analysis and co-director of the justify on Terrorism at the Naval Post-Graduate School in Monterey, California.  In this program we talk with Professor Arquilla about the fighting tactics employed by networks as opposed to countries, the threats they pose, and some of the war tactics used against these networks.

John Arquilla recommends "Kim," by Rudyard Kipling.

Originally Broadcast: June 21, 2005

Click here to begin listening.


Anthony Arthur

Changing America: Upton Sinclair Style

Radical Innocent: Upton Sinclair

Since I was young I have been intrigued by the work of Upton Sinclair.   I remember, as a boy hearing about Sinclair’s books and efforts to change the world.  A close friend of my family was the writer for Sinclair’s campaign newspaper when he ran for governor of California in 1934 and, although that was long before I was born, the stories rolled during his later visits.  Sinclair is perhaps best know for “The Jungle,” published in 1906 which openly revealed the inhumane conditions of the Chicago stockyards and how the meatpacking industry operated, resulting in the passage of the pure food and drug laws within months after publication of “The Jungle.” "Radical Innocent: Upton Sinclair,” is a biography written by retired professor Anthony Arthur, released in June 2006, 100 years after the publication “The Jungle,” and tells the story of Upton Sinclair’s life and work.  Arthur weaves the strands of Sinclair’s contentious public career and his often-troubled private life, which Sinclair at times willingly revealed, into a compelling personal narrative. Anthony Arthur rates integrity as Sinclair’s greatest strength, and claims his eloquence in writing and speech along with his reputation for selflessness as the basis of a ground swell of support for Sinclair and his ideas.  When I spoke with Anthony Arthur at the end of August 2006 from his home near Los Angeles, California, Professor Arthur began by describing what attracted him to study and write about Upton Sinclair.                    

Anthony Arthur recommends “Seven Pillars of Wisdom: A Triumph,” by T.E. Lawrence.

Originally Broadcast: September 6, 2006

Click here to begin listening.


Alan Axelrod

FDR as a Leader

Nothing to Fear, Lessons in Leadership from FDR

Alan Axelrod is a writer who has studied the cultural and business dimensions of America.  “Nothing to Fear, Lessons in Leadership from FDR,” by Axelrod, focuses on FDR’s unique leadership style and what an effective leader is able to do.  We spoke about FDR’s leadership skills in the first part of our discussion and then addressed the leadership style and effectiveness of President George W. Bush.

Alan Axelrod recommends "The Life of PT Barnum," by PT Barnum.

Originally Broadcast: June 3, 2003

Click here to begin listening.


Christina Baldwin

Creating Community through Stories

Storycatcher: Making Sense of Our Lives though the Power and Practice of Story

Story, the heart of language. Story moves us to love and hate and can motivate us to change the whole course of our life. Story can lift us beyond the borders of our individuality to imagine realities of other people, times and places, to empathize with other beings, and to extend our supposing far into the universe. Storytelling, both oral and written is the foundation of being human. In this edition of Radio Curious we visit with Christina Baldwin, author of "Storycatcher: Making Sense of Our Lives though the Power and Practice of Story." This is being done in Ukiah, California, with the idea of capturing "what is the story of Ukiah," as a part of "what is the story of Mendocino County, California," to be used in the development of the Ukiah Area Plan that is now under consideration by the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors.

Christina Baldwin recommends "Turning To One Another: Simple Conversations to Restore Our Hope for the Future," by Margaret J. Wheatley.

Originally Broadcast: April 17, 2006

Click here to begin listening.


Phil Baldwin

Peace and Freedom Candidate for Congress, 1992

Our guest in this program was the 1992 Peace and Freedom Party candidate for the 1st Congressional District in California, Phil Baldwin.  We spoke about the differences between the Peace and Freedom Party and the Democratic and Republican parties.  Particularly of interest in this discussion are the differences between Mr. Baldwin and the final victor of the 1992 election, former Democrat Dan Hamburg.

Originally Broadcast: December 16, 1991

Click here to begin listening.


Benjamin Barber

Don't Buy It!

Consumed: How Markets Corrupt Children, Infantilize Adults, and Swallow Citizens Whole

When we purchase and consume what we believe is necessary for our individual lives, do we obtain what we need or do we end up with what the forces of 21st century capitalism tell us we need?  In this edition of Radio Curious we visit with Benjamin Barber, author of “Consumed, How Markets Corrupt Children, Infantilize Adults, and Swallow Citizens Whole.”  The concepts of dumbing down the consumer and the development of brand devotion in the early years of a person’s life are, among many other considerations, explored in this book.  I spoke with Benjamin Barber from his home in New York City in early April 2007 and began our conversation by asking him to discuss how consumers are infantilized and targeted in way that there will never be enough shoppers.

Benjamin Barber recommends “The March,” by E.L. Doctorow..

Originally Broadcast: April 11, 2007

Click here to begin listening.


Judi Bari

Conversation with an Earth First! Leader

Until the mid-1990s, the Redwood Industry dominated much of North Coast economy.  In the mid-1990s, due to a number of circumstances particularly involving Pacific Lumber Company and Charles Hurwitz, industry advocates collided with environmentalists in a final hurrah.  Few figures among the environmentalists carry as much name-recognition and power as did Judi Bari.  In this program, recorded in March of 1995 at the height of the conflict, Judi Bari and I discussed the position of Earth First!

Judi Bari recommends "J. Edgar Hoover," by Kurt Gentry.

Originally Broadcast: March 27, 1995

Click here to begin listening.


Annie Barnes

Racism in America

Everyday Racism: A Book For All Americans

Racism has too long been a part of the American experience.  The Civil War and the Constitutional amendments that followed, the Supreme Court decisions ordering the desegregation of schools, and the Civil Rights movements did not end racism in America.  Annie S. Barnes, holds a Ph.D. in Social Anthropology from the University of Virginia and is a retired Professor of Sociology and Anthropology at Norfolk State University in Virginia.  She is the author of “Everyday Racism, A Book for All Americans,” a book based on the racist experiences suffered by 146 black college students.  Professor Barnes describes effects of racism on black people and what black people and white people can do to combat it.

Annie Barnes recommends "Driving While Black," by Kenneth Meeks.

Originally Broadcast: February 27, 2001

Click here to begin listening.


P.T. Barnum & Doug Mishler

The Something of Humbug

PT Barnum, sometimes known as the Prince of Humbug, was born in Connecticut in 1810.  In many ways, he personified the American character that Frenchman Alexis De Tocqueville described in his book, “Democracy in America.”  Barnum delighted in making money and telling the truth, as he saw it.  Some truths were told in the political arena, where he was twice a member of the Connecticut legislature and, in the interim, Mayor of Bridgeport, Connecticut.  Some of his truths were lies when they were told to other people, like the history of some of his circus performers.  Other truths were told in his newspapers.  PT Barnum, ‘PT’ as he liked to be called, was best known as the creator of the ‘Best Show On Earth,’ the Barnum and Bailey Circus.  I spoke with PT Barnum, personified by Doug Missler, in the studios of Radio Curious in July of 1996 when this program was originally broadcast.

P.T. Barnum recommends "My Toils and Struggles," the autobiography of PT Barnum. Doug Mishler recommends "The Culture of Complaint," by Robert Hughes.

Originally Broadcast: July 24, 1996

Click here to begin listening.


Yael Berda

Israeli Human Rights Attorney

Yael Berda is a young Israeli lawyer, born in New York and raised in Jerusalem.  At the age of 14, she became involved in a struggle to free her parents from debtors’ prison and the experience changed her life.  She has since become a leader of a non-violent movement for reconciliation and understanding among the Israel and Palestinian populations.

Yael Berda recommends "Fields of Protest," by Roca Ray.

Originally Broadcast: November 30, 2004

Click here to begin listening.


Blanche Boyd

Self-Styled Outlaw Lesbians

Terminal Velocity

The concept of memoir versus fiction leads many authors to transform their personal experiences and life to fiction.  Blanche Boyd is a native of South Carolina and a Professor of Literature at Connecticut College.  She is also the author of the book entitled, “Terminal Velocity.”  This is a book about a group of self-styled lesbian outlaws in the 1970s.  We discussed the relationship of memoir and fiction, and how it applies to her work.

Blanche Boyd recommends "Cathedral" & "To the Waterfall," both by Raymond Carver.

Originally Broadcast: August 19, 1997

Click here to begin listening.


William Boyer

The Rights of Our Children

America's Future: Transition into the 21st Century

William Boyer, a Professor Emeritus and the former Chairman of the Department of Educational Foundations at the University of Hawaii, is the author of a book called “America’s Future: Transition into the 21st Century.”  In this program, we discussed the rights of future generations, how to protect those rights, what they are, and what right we have to determine the rights of future generations.  This program was originally broadcast in March of 1993, when Radio Curious was called Government, Politics and Ideas.

Originally Broadcast: March 30, 1993

Click here to begin listening.


Dr. Seyom Brown

Clinton's Foreign Policy

New Forces, Old Forces and the Future of World Politics

The relationship of the US to Russia and the other members of the former Soviet Union is a major issue in the world today.  The Clinton administration claimed one of its best foreign policy achievements was the way it handled the Russian situation and the disbanding of the former Soviet Union.  Dr. Seyom Brown has, for the past 40 years, studied that relationship, as a foreign policy analyst, advisor and author.  He is currently a Professor of International Relations and the former Chairman of the Department of Politics at Brandeis University, near Boston, MA.  Our discussion about Clinton’s foreign policy resulted in this two-part program.

Originally Broadcast: August 28, 1995 & September 11, 1995

Click here to begin listening to Part One.

Click here to begin listening to Part Two.


Lester R. Brown

The Earth and Economy in Crisis

Plan B: Rescuing a Planet Under Stress and a Civilization in Trouble

Our earth is in big trouble.  The environment and our economy are in crisis.  Essentially, we have created a bubble economy in which we are over-consuming the earth’s natural resources.  In this program, we will visit with Lester R. Brown, the author of “Plan B: Rescuing a Planet Under Stress and a Civilization in Trouble.”  Lester Brown is the president of the Earth Policy Institute, a nonprofit interdisciplinary research organization based in Washington DC.

Originally Broadcast: October 7, 2003

Click here to begin listening.


President Jimmy Carter

Life After the Presidency

The Virtues of Aging

Considering the alternatives, growing older is really not all that bad.  The frame of mind that we develop and carry with us as we age controls much of how we feel and behave.  James Earl Carter Jr., more often known as Jimmy Carter, the 39th President of the US, is the author of a book called, “The Virtues of Aging.”  President Carter’s book covers issues from Social Security and medical expenses to the importance of staying active and involved.  I spoke with President Jimmy Carter by phone, in the fall of 1998, and I asked him what prompted him to write the book.

President Jimmy Carter recommends "The Age Wave: How the Most Important Trend of Our Time Can Change Your Future," by Ken Dychtwald.

Originally Broadcast: December 4, 1998

Click here to begin listening.


Gordon Chang

How Will China Survive?

The Coming Collapse of China

Approximately 20% of the world’s population lives in the People’s Republic of China.  According to Chinese-American lawyer Gordon G. Chang, China appears from the outside to be politically stable and economically strong.  Chang, however, argues that China is in social, cultural, economic and political turmoil.  He claims that China’s pending entry into the World Trade Organization will trigger social and political collapse.  Gordon Chang has lived and worked in China for almost 20 years, most recently in Shanghai.  He is the author of a new book entitled “The Coming Collapse of China.”

Gordon Chang recommends "The Tipping Point," by Malcolm Gladwell.

Originally Broadcast: September 11, 2001

Click here to begin listening.


Alston Chase

Who is Ted Kaczynski?

Harvard and the Unabomber: The Education of an American Terrorist

"Harvard and the Unabomber:  The Education of an American Terrorist” is a book by Alston Chase, former Chair of the Philosophy Department at Macalester University in Minnesota.  After studying the life and experiences of Theodore Kaczynski, who came to be known as the Unabomber, Chase characterizes him as product of the post World War II angst.  Our discussion on Kaczynski continued through two parts.

Alston Chase recommends "Pity of War," by Nile Furgeson.

Originally Broadcast: July 1, 2003 & July 8, 2003

Click here to begin listening to Part One.

Click here to begin listening to Part Two.


Da Chen

Life in China Under Mao

Colors of the Mountain

The Chinese Cultural Revolution of the 1960s, led by Mao Zedong, imposed a major change to the nation where one in every four people in the world live.  Da Chen was born in 1962 in southern China to a once wealthy family, by that time despised for its capitalist past.  At the age of 23, after graduating with top honors and serving as an assistant professor at the Beijing Language Institute, Da Chen came to America with $30 and a bamboo flute.   He won a full scholarship to Columbia University Law School, and later settled in the Hudson River Valley.  His book, “Colors of the Mountain,” tells the story of his childhood, his life and experiences.

Da Chen recommends "The God of Small Things," by Arundhati Roy.

Originally Broadcast: July 18, 2000

Click here to begin listening.


Terrence Cheng

Two Chinese Brothers

Sons of Heaven

In June of 1989, in Tienamin Square, in the justify of Beijing, China, one of the largest student protests ever to occur in that country took place.  The “Sons of Heaven,” by Terrence Cheng, is a novel about three major players in this drama, Deng Xiao Ping, the leader of China at the time, and two brothers, one a soldier in the Red Army in Teinamin Square at the time, and the other the man who stood in front of the tanks.

Terrence Cheng recommends "Ghost Written," by David Mitchell.

Originally Broadcast: August 1, 2002

Cick here to begin listening.


David Corn

Does President Bush Lie?

The Lies of George W. Bush, Mastering the Politics of Deception

According to David Corn, the author of “The Lies of George W. Bush, Mastering the Politics of Deception,” all American Presidents have lied, but George W. Bush has relentlessly abused the truth.  Corn, the Washington editor of The Nation, offers a scathing indictment of Bush, as he reveals and examines the deceptions at the heart of the Bush presidency.

David Corn recommends "Roscoe," by William Kennedy & "All the King's Men," by Robert Penn Warren.

Originally Broadcast: November 25, 2003

Click here to begin listening.


Paul Coverdale

Peace Corps Priorities, 1991

This program’s guest is Paul Coverdale, at the time the Director of the Peace Corps, appointed by the first President Bush.  He later became a Senator from Georgia.  Our discussion concerned the nature of the Peace Corps and Coverdale’s role as the agency’s director.

Originally Broadcast: August 19, 1991

Click here to begin listening.


Susan Crane

Blood on a Nuclear Submarine

Civil disobedience often precedes most social or political change.  The American political tradition has deep roots in civil disobedience.  The Boston Tea Party, the Underground Railroad of the Civil War period, the Suffrage Movement, the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s, and the Vietnam War protests are well known examples.  Symbolic destruction of the tools of war is an act of civil disobedience currently carried out by religious and faith based war protesters.   Susan Crane, once a Peace Corps volunteer and a former Ukiah teacher, hammered on a nuclear submarine in Maine and then poured blood on it.  As a result, she was sentenced to two years in federal prison.  I met with her in the studios of Radio Curious at the end of February 1999, the day after she was released from prison.

Susan Crane recommends The Bible.

Originally Broadcast: March 9, 1999

Click here to begin listening.


Catherine Crier

Are Lawyers Really That Bad?

The Case Against Lawyers

The control and influence lawyers have in American society has grown enormously in the past 75 years.  The influence was foreseen in the 1830s by Alexis de Tocqueville and described in his book, “Democracy in America.”  Catherine Crier discusses and critiques this influence in her book, “The Case Against Lawyers.”  Crier, herself a former lawyer, district attorney, and judge is now a commentator on Court TV,

Catherine Crier recommends "Pigs at the Trough," by Arianna Huffington & "The Rule of Lawyers," by Walter Olson.

Originally Broadcast: March 18, 2003

Click here to begin listening.


John Darnton

Who is Charles Darwin?

The Darwin Conspiracy

Who was Charles Darwin and what led him to describe what we now call “the theory of evolution?”  These curious questions are ones that I have been following since I was about ten years old.  In 1978 I had the good fortune of visiting the Galapagos Islands, 600 miles west of Ecuador in the Pacific Ocean.  Charles Darwin visited the Galapagos Island in 1831 for month as part of a five-year voyage around the world.  There he saw birds and animals that helped him formulate some of his ideas about evolution he published “The Origin of the Species,” 22 years later in 1853.  And the world has not been the same since.  Now, at a time when concepts of evolution and natural selection are attacked certain from theological and political perspectives, a novel called  “The Darwin Conspiracy,” has been written by John Darnton, a writer and editor for the New York Times.  “The Darwin Conspiracy,” although fiction, is said by John Darton to be 90% accurate, and covers Darwin’s life and thinking before and after the publication of “The Origin of the Species.”  I spoke with John Darton from his home in New York City at the end of October 2005.  He began by describing who Charles Darwin was, in his time and place. 

  John Darnton recommends "Snow," by Orhan Pamuk.

Originally Broadcast: November 29, 2005

Click here to begin listening.


Kenneth C. Davis

Independence, Where Does It Come From?

Don't Know Much About History, Everything you Need to Know About American History But Never Learned

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. --That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, -- That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security." These words may sound radical today, but in fact come from the Declaration of Independence drafted in 1776. In this edition of Radio Curious, broadcast during Independence Week of 2005 we talk with Kenneth C. Davis, author of "Don't Know Much about History," and review some of the issues of 1776 from our perspective now. This interview was recorded on July 2, 2005 with Kenneth C. Davis from his home in southern Vermont. He began by commenting on the role religion played the declaration of the Independence.

Kenneth C. Davis recommends “Diane Arbus, A Biography” by Patricia Bosworth.

Originally Broadcast: July 5, 2005

Click here to begin listening.


Richard Dooling

Is it Safe to Say … ?

Blue Streak: Swearing, Free Speech and Sexual Harassment

Certain words, said at the wrong time or place, may get a person into a heap of trouble.  The laws surrounding freedom of speech do not permit us, for example, to shout out “fire” in a theater or advocate the immediate and violent overthrow of the government.  There are also limits on the time and place where a person can use swear words or language with sexual innuendos or suggestions.  Richard Dooling, an attorney and writer living in Nebraska, joined us in June of 1997 to talk about his book, entitled, “Blue Streak: Swearing, Free Speech and Sexual Harassment.”

Richard Dooling recommends "Emotional Brain," by Joseph La Due.

Originally Broadcast: June 4, 1997

Click here to begin listening.


Daniel Ellsberg

The Pentagon Papers

Few moments in American history have held the tension of the early 1970s.  The nation was fundamentally divided between the jaded counter-culture and Nixon’s ‘silent majority,’ a rupture particularly connected to the still-escalating Vietnam War.  The release to the public of the Pentagon Papers by Daniel Ellsberg in 1971 focused national attention on US foreign policy and on our right as individual citizens to freedom of the press.

Daniel Ellsberg recommends "Our War," by David Harris.

Originally Broadcast: March 19, 1997

Click here to begin listening.


Eve Ensler

Meet the Author of the Vagina Monologues

The Vagina Monologues

The Vagina Monologues, created and produced by Eve Ensler, tell the stories of women, their relationships, feelings, and, in some cases, abuse.  In this edition of Radio Curious, we spoke with Eve Ensler about the origin of the the Vagina Monologues and the film, “Until the Violence Ends.”

Eve Ensler recommends "Bush in Babylon," by Tariq Ali.

Originally Broadcast: January 27, 2004

Click here to begin listening.


Dr. Ron Epstein

Genetically Modified Food

Genetically engineered food products are an issue that concerns many.  In more recent years, Mendocino County has gone so far as to pass a resolution legally prohibiting their growth in the county.  My guest in this program, recorded in the late summer of 1995, is Ron Epstein, a philosophy professor at both the Buddhist University in Talmage, CA and San Francisco State University.  He has given considerable consideration to the problems of genetic engineering of the plants and vegetables that we eat.

Dr. Ron Epstein recommends "Algeny," by Jeremy Rifkin.

Originally Broadcast: September 18, 1995

Click here to begin listening.


Dr. Ron Epstein

Genetically Modified Food, Part Two

Not so long ago in human history, wars were fought with sticks, slings and rocks.  Now, with the ability to modify the DNA of disease causing organisms, war is very different.  Evidence is appearing that genetically engineered war has, in fact, been used in our world.  With this program, Radio Curious will begin a series of discussions on environmental and social effects of genetically engineered war.  This program’s guest is Dr. Ron Epstein, a research professor at the Institute of World Religions in Berkeley, California, and a lecturer in the Philosophy Department at San Francisco State University in San Francisco, California.  We discussed the scientific and ethical dangers of genetic engineering.

Dr. Ron Epstein recommends "The Cobra Event," by Richard Preston & "Biotech Century," by Jeremy Rifkin.

Originally Broadcast: September 4, 1998

Clck here to begin listening.


Rep. Sam Farr (D)

A Visit with Congressman Sam Farr, July 2002

Sam Farr is a member of Congress from Carmel, California, representing the central coast of California, as well as a former Peace Corps Volunteer, having served in Columbia from 1964 to 1966.  He is one of a few former Peace Corps Volunteers to serve in Congress.  At the time of the celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Peace Corps, in late June, 2002, Congressman Farr and Senator Dodd of Connecticut introduced legislation to increase the size of the Peace Corps.

Rep. Sam Farr (D) recommends "Coast Redwoods, a Natural and Cultural History," by Sam Liden.

Originally Broadcast: July 16, 2002

Click here to begin listening.


Rep. Sam Farr (D)

A Visit with Congressman Sam Farr, June 2003

This interview’s guest was my old law school friend, Congressman Sam Farr, who represents Monterey and Santa Cruz counties.  In this interview, we discussed the USA Patriot Act, the Freedom to Read Act of 2003, and the influence that the Democrats, the minority party, have in both houses of Congress.

Rep. Sam Farr (D) recommends .

Originally Broadcast: June 10, 2003

Click here to begin listening.


Rep. Sam Farr (D)

A Visit with Congressman Sam Farr, April 2004

This edition’s guest was Rep. Sam Farr (D-CA).  We spoke about the access that the Democrats as the minority party have to the microphone in Congress.  We also discussed the 9/11 Commission and its investigation, the Patriot Act, the then upcoming Democratic and Republican National conventions, and the election of 2004.

Rep. Sam Farr (D) recommends "Two Americas," by Stanley Greenberg.

Originally Broadcast: April 13, 2004

Click here to begin listening.


Rep. Sam Farr (D)

A Visit with Congressman Sam Farr, July 2004

Rep. Sam Farr (D-CA), who has appeared on the program several times before, discussed the elections of 2004.

Rep. Sam Farr (D) recommends "Sarge: The Life and Times of Sargent Shriver," by Scott Strossel.

Originally Broadcast: July 20, 2004

Click here to begin listening.


Mark Feeney

Nixon at the Movies

Nixon at the Movies, A Book About Belief

Richard Nixon, and the movies he watched while he was president...  On his third night in office, January 22, 1969 Nixon saw The Shoes of the Fisherman in the White House movie theater.  From then until August 1973, when he resigned the presidency Nixon watched over 500 movies in the White House, at Camp David, and other places he frequented.  This is an average of 2½ movies per week during his presidency.  The book, Nixon at the Movies, A Book About Belief, by Boston Globe journalist Mark Feeney examines the role movies played in forming Nixon’s character and career, and the role Nixon played in the development of American film.  Ronald Reagan may have been the first movie star president, but Feeney argues that Nixon was the first true cinematic president.   In this program, recorded in January 2005, Mark Feeney begins by commenting on the effect that the 500 plus movies that Nixon watched had on him and his presidency.

Mark Feeney recommends "The Whole Equation," by David Thompson.

Originally Broadcast: February 22, 2005

Click here to begin listening.


Charles Ferguson

Will This War Ever End?

The Endless War

“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.

Charles Ferguson recommends "The Lives of Others," a movie about life in East German under the communist regiem.

Originally Broadcast: July 25, 2007

Click here to begin listening.


Mel Fiske

Radical Reporter

Radical: A Memoir of Wars, Communists & Work

Political philosophy and one’s education, both formal and informal, can lead a person on unimagined paths that are woven into stories in that person’s life.  The book, “Radical: A Memoir of Wars, Communists & Work,” was written by Mel Fiske, our guest in this edition of Radio Curious.  Mel was radicalized after a 15,000 mile journey across America during the Depression.  That trip opened his eyes to a life he never knew existed growing up in New York City.

Mel Fiske recommends “Bayou Farewell,” by Mike Tidwell.

Originally Broadcast: January 17, 2006

Click here to begin listening.


Terry Francke

The People's Right to Know

Legal Notebook: How to Keep Open Meetings Open and Public Meetings Public

The right of the public to know how our government acts is basic to our American system of democracy.  Most states and the federal government have enacted laws requiring public meetings to be open, with minimal secrecy provisions.  There are also laws guaranteeing access to public records kept and maintained by the government.  The California First Amendment Coalition recently published a book called, “Legal Notebook: How to Keep Open Meetings Open and Public Meetings Public.”  Terry Francke is an attorney who is the general counsel for the California First Amendment Coalition and author of this book.

Terry Francke recommends "Who Killed Homer?  The Demise of Classical Education and the Recovery of Greek Wisdom," by Victor Davis Hanson & John Heath.

Originally Broadcast: October 16, 1998

Click here to begin listening.


Benjamin Franklin

Ralph Archbold

Visit with Benjamin Franklin

This conversation with Benjamin Franklin, as portrayed by Ralph Archibald who shares a birthday with Benjamin Franklin, was recorded in the summer of 1994 in two parts.  The first was recorded on a walk to where Benjamin Franklin lived and worked, and the second was recorded at the City Tavern, both Philadelphia landmarks in Franklin’s life and now.  Benjamin Franklin is, perhaps, the most noteworthy and animated of the Founding Fathers.  His contributions to science, common sense, and, most importantly, this nation of ours set him apart from most other figures in American history.

Originally Broadcast: July 18, 1994 and July 25, 1994

Click here to begin listening to part one.

Click here to begin listening to part two.


Estelle Freedman

The History of Feminism

No Turning Back — The History of Feminism and the Future of Women

Estelle B. Freedman, a Professor of History at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California, specializing in feminism, is the author of “No Turning Back—The History of Feminism and the Future of Women.”   She addresses many of the issues in her book in this edition of Radio Curious.

Estelle Freedman recommends "The Blind Assassin," by Margaret Atwood & "The Vagina Monologues," by Eve Ensler.

Originally Broadcast: April 2, 2002

Click here to begin listening.


Nestle J. Frobish

Fair Play For Frogs, Part 1

Frogs play an important role in ecology of the world and are their occasional demise is sometimes noted as an impending ecological disaster. In 1961, a newly elected member of the California State Assembly, Jerome R. Waldie, introduced a bill that read in full, “frogs may be taken using slingshot.”  Little did he know that this bill would plague him through out his political career in the California Legislature, in the United States Congress, and as a candidate for governor of California.  Our guest is Nestle J. Frobish, the Chair-Creature of the World Wide Fair Play for Frogs Committee, an organization founded in Berkeley, California soon after what became to be known as the “frog murder bill.”   “Fair Play for Frogs, The Waldie – Frobish Papers,” the collected correspondence between Nestle J. Frobish and former Congressman Jerome R. Waldie was published as political spoof in 1977. Around that time some misinformed people, including Congressman Waldie accused me of being Nestle J. Frobish, something I am not now, nor ever have been.   I spoke with Nestle J. Frobish by phone while he was lurking near a pond at Frog Central in northern Vermont on May 21, 2007, so this rather preposterous story could be told.  Jerome Waldie is also a guest and his interview may be found on this web-site.

Nestle J. Frobish recommends "State of Denial" by Bob Woodward.

Originally Broadcast: May 21, 2007

Click here to begin listening.


Mike Frost

You Can't Hide

Spy World: Inside the Canadian and American Intelligence Establishments

The fact that governments spy on each other is no secret. The fact that they also collect data about lives of millions of innocent citizens worldewide may be unknown to many people.  Mike Frost, the author of “Spy World: Inside the Canadian and American Intelligence Establishments,” worked as a spy for over 30 years.  Mike traveled worldwide, setting up devices to intercept what were thought to be secret international communications.  Mike Frost has since retired as a spy and has many thoughts and considerations about his former job.  Our discussion led to a two-part program, originally broadcast in April of 1999.

Mike Frost recommends the movie, October Sky.

Originally Broadcast: April 6, 1999 & April 13, 1999

Click here to begin listening to Part One.

Click here to begin listening to Part Two.


Deborah Koons Garcia

The Future of Food

The director of, The Future of Food

“The Future of Food,” a film written and produced by Deborah Koons Garcia, discusses our food’s conflicting relationship with both mass agri-business and local agriculture.  Our discussion was conducted in the context of the passage of Mendocino County’s Measure H, banning growth of GMOs in the county.

Deborah Koons Garcia recommends "Women's Diaries fo the Westward Journey," edited by Lillian Schlissel.

Originally Broadcast: April 25, 2004

Click here to begin listening.


Kristen Gardiner

Report on Lori Berenson

Lori Berenson is a 35-year-old woman from New York who has been in prison in Peru since 1996 for allegedly conspiring with Peruvian revolutionaries, known as MRTA, (Movimiento Revoluncionario Tupac Amaru).  Lori Berenson was twice convicted in Peru, first by judges who shrouded themselves in hoods, and then again in a slightly more open proceeding.  Her second trial still lacked adequate due process rights, as unanimously determined by the Costa Rica based Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.  However, in a subsequent decision on appeal, handed down in December 2004, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, also based in Costa Rica, affirmed Lori’s 20-year prison sentence.  In this program, Kristen Gardner, a friend and supporter of Lori Berenson since they first met at students in Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1983, discusses Lori, the person she is, and her case.

Kristen Gardiner recommends "Hope in the Dark," by Rebecca Solnit.

Originally Broadcast: January 25, 2005

Click here to begin listening.


Leonard Garment

Crazy Rhythm: My Journey from Brooklyn, Jazz, and Wall Street to Nixon’s White House, Watergate, and Beyond…,

Some people’s memories of President Richard Nixon are negative due to his role in escalating the Vietnam War, the student demonstrations at Kent State University, and Nixon’s ultimate downfall in Watergate.  But who was the man?  And how could another individual get close to him?  “Crazy Rhythm: My Journey from Brooklyn, Jazz, and Wall Street to Nixon’s White House, Watergate, and Beyond…,” is a story written by a complex person very close to Richard Nixon.  Attorney Leonard Garment was born to immigrant Jewish parents in New York in 1924.  Playing music, especially saxophone jazz, he grew up in Brooklyn.  As a good student and, with what he describes, “an ambition to run things,” Garment finished law school in his early twenties and began working for a major Wall Street law firm.  Even though at times he characterized himself as a liberal Democrat, Garment became a close friend and law partner with Richard Nixon and later became the attorney for, and the counsel to, President Richard Nixon, during the time Nixon was embroiled in the throws of Watergate.  This interview was originally broadcast in May of 1997.

Leonard Garment recommends “American Pastoral,” by Philip Roth.

Originally Broadcast: May 16, 1997

Click here to begin listening.


Wavy Gravy

You've Got to be Kidding …

Radio Curious is a program of interviews with those we wonder about.  I’ve often wondered about Woodstock of 1969.  I’ve often wondered how it got going and what its ramifications were.  Why does the recollection make some people puke?  So, I thought I’d ask Wavy Gravy, a man with insight on the subject far beyond most other people.  We discussed Woodstock and other stories in July of 2000.

Wavy Gravy recommends "The Laughing Sutra," Mark Salzman & "Angela's Ashes," by Frank McCourt.

Originally Broadcast: July 25, 2000

Click here to begin listening.


Horace Greeley & David Fenimore

Go West, Young Man, Go West!

Newspapers were the primary means of mass communication in 19th Century America.  They not only told the news, but they pervaded social and political ideas of the times.  Horace Greeley was one of the most colorful and outspoken newspapermen of his day.  “Read and judge yourself,” was a slogan of his, almost as well known in his lifetime as his slogan, “Go west, young man, go west,” is known now.  I spoke with Horace Greeley through the personage of Chautauqua scholar David Fenimore during the 1996 Democracy in America Chautauqua series that visited Ukiah, CA.

Horace Greeley recommends "Democracy in America," by Alexis de Tocqueville. David Fenimore recommends "Breaking News: How the Media Undermine American Democracy," by James Fallows & "Who Will Tell the People?" by William Greider.

Originally Broadcast: February 26, 1997

Click here to begin listening.


Dr. David Ray Griffin

Was this a Cause of the 9/11 Attacks?

The New Pearl Harbor: Disturbing Questions about the Bush Administration and 9/11

The forces behind the disasters of September 11, 2001 are said to be unclear and undefined, notwithstanding the Official Report of the 9/11 Commission.  David Ray Griffin, a Professor Emeritus from the Claremont School of Theology, and the author of “The New Pearl Harbor: Disturbing Questions about the Bush Administration and 9/11,” casts doubt on the official version, as well as the role of the Bush Administration.  In a two-part interview, we discussed these issues.

Dr. David Ray Griffin recommends "Cover Up," by Paul Lance & "The Terror Timeline, Year by Year, Day by Day, Minute by Minute: A Comprehensive Chronicle of the Road to 9/11 and America's Response," by Paul Thompson.

Originally Broadcast: October 5, 2004 & October 12, 2004

Click here to begin listening to Part One.

Click here to begin listening to Part Two.


Paul R. Griffin

Sowing the Seeds of Racism

Seeds of Racism in the Soul of America

Racism, as a part of the American religious culture, can be traced to the religious concepts of some of the earliest European settlers in North America.  Professor Paul R. Griffin explores these roots in his book, “Seeds of Racism in the Soul of America,” linking the concepts in the Puritan belief system to long lasting racist effects.  He argues that racism is itself a religion in the United States and is closely related to America Christianity.  He claims that efforts to erase racism have failed because they have concentrated on its visible manifestations rather than its ideological character.

Paul R. Griffin recommends "The Rage of the Privileged Class," by Ellis Cose.

Originally Broadcast: March 1, 2001

Click here to begin listening.


Richard Grossman

Corporate Responsibility

In this program, we discussed the influence that the 1,000 largest corporations in the world have on the American society and culture as well as worldwide society and culture.  Richard Grossman is the Director of the Program on Corporations, Law, and Democracy, based in Cambridge, MA.  When I spoke with Richard Grossman by phone from his home in Provincetown, MA, I began by asking what, in his opinion, these corporations are doing that they should not do.

Richard Grossman recommends books by Alexander Mikeljohn.

Originally Broadcast: March 27, 1996

Click here to begin listening.


Gregory Hartley

Maryann Karinch

Reading Body Language

I Can Read You Like a Book

Have you ever wondered what some body movements mean when people hear certain words or see certain images?  Many of these body movements are involuntary reactions inherent to the individual or culturally based. “I Can Read You Like A Book:  How to Spot the Messages and Emotions People are Really Sending with their Body Language,” a book by Gregory Hartley and Maryann Karinch, described methods of understanding what people really mean and how to gain insight to their background by watching their physical behavior.  Hartley, a former Army interrogator details how to review with an open mind what you see, evaluate to know what is relevant, analyze to identify involuntary versus involuntary movements and then decide or draw a conclusion based on what you observe.

Gregory Hartley recommends “Without Conscience:  The Disturbing World of the Psychopaths Among Us,” by Dr. Robert D. Hare..

Originally Broadcast: April 4, 2007

Click here to begin listening.


Dr. Dolores Hayden

From City to Suburb

Building Suburbia: Green Fields and Urban Growth, 1820 to 2000

The development and the expansion of homes, where they are and why they came to be in the places they are, are issues of particular importance to Dolores Hayden, Professor of Architecture and Urbanism and American Studies at Yale University.  Her book, “Building Suburbia: Green Fields and Urban Growth, 1820 to 2000,” explores the design and development of the suburbs and suburbia’s relevance in American history.

Dr. Dolores Hayden recommends "A Consumer's Republic," by Liz Cohen.

Originally Broadcast: November 21, 2003

Click here to begin listening.


Arianna Huffington

Corporate Greed

Pigs at the Trough, How Corporate Greed and Political Corruption Are Undermining America

Arianna Huffington, a political columnist and commentator with a conservative background, is the author of “Pigs at the Trough, How Corporate Greed and Political Corruption Are Undermining America.”  Her book discusses alliances between corporate executive officers, politicians, lobbyists and bankers in disregard for office and factory workers.

Arianna Huffington recommends "Wealth and Commonwealth, Why America Should Tax Accumulated Fortunes," by Chuck Collins.

Originally Broadcast: February 18, 2003

Click here to begin listening.


Swanee Hunt

Women Waging Peace

This Was Not Our War: Bosnian Women Reclaiming the Peace

Women Waging Peace is a global policy-oriented initiative working to integrate women into the peace process.  Swanee Hunt, a former United States Ambassador to the Austria, founded it.  Swanee Hunt is also the author of “This Was Not Our War; Bosnian Women Reclaiming the Peace.”  She interviewed twenty-six Bosnian women who are reconstructing their society in the years following the devastating war in their country.  These women describe what it was like living in a vibrant multicultural community that suddenly imploded in an onslaught of violence.  They relate the chaos; the atrocities, the rapes of neighbors and friends, their efforts to care for children and elderly parents and to find food and clean drinking water.  This interview with Ambassador Swanee Hunt was recorded from her home near Boston, Massachusetts in February 2005.

Swanee Hunt recommends "The Courage To Be," by Paul Tillich.

Originally Broadcast: February 15, 2005

Click here to begin listening.


Thomas Jefferson & C. Jenkinson

The Author of the Declaration of Independence

Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States of America, stands as one of the lead political theorists of American history.  His ward republican theory required an agrarian population, a government originating in the individual household, and a consistently questioning and rebellious public.  My guest in this edition of Radio Curious is Mr. Jefferson, personified by Clay Jenkinson.  We discussed what has gone wrong in the US since Mr. Jefferson was President and addressed some of his concepts of what are necessary for a democracy.

Thomas Jefferson recommends "The History of the Peloponnesian War," by Thuclydides. C. Jenkinson recommends "In the Absence of the Sacred," by Jerry Mander.

Originally Broadcast: May 21, 1994

Click here to begin listening.


Sister Jane Kelly

Errant Priests

Taught to Believe the Unbelievable: A New Vision of Hope for Church and Society

Sister Jane Kelly has been a nun for over 55 years and for several years has tried to have a priest in her parish taken out of the ministry for child molestation and thievery.  She is also the author of a book entitled, “Taught to Believe the Unbelievable: A New Vision of Hope for Church and Society,” which discusses the current crisis of sexual and fiscal abuse as an incredible opportunity for the Church.

Originally Broadcast: June 10, 2002

Click here to begin listening.


Randall Kennedy

Can You Say This Word?

Nigger: The Strange Career of a Troublesome Word

Few words in the English language have caused so much pain, hurt and emotion as the N-word.  Randall Kennedy, a professor of Law at Harvard University, has written a book to chronicle the history of this word and to diffuse and neutralize it.  His book is sub-titled, “The Strange Career of a Troublesome Word.”

Randall Kennedy recommends "The Negro in the American Revolution," by Benjamin Quarles.

Originally Broadcast: March 19, 2002

Click here to begin listening.


Randall Kennedy

Black and White

Interracial Intimacies: Sex, Marriage, Identity, and Adoption

“Interracial Intimacies: Sex, Marriage, Identity, and Adoption,” is a book written by Randall Kennedy, a Harvard University Law School Professor.  He takes an in-depth look at the issue of black and white relationships set against the ever-changing social mores and laws of this country.

Randall Kennedy recommends "The Biography of Walter White," by Robert Janken.

Originally Broadcast: April 15, 2003

Click here to begin listening.


Dr. David Kiersey

What is my Personality?

Presidential Temperaments & Please Understand Me

My guest in this program was Dr. David Kiersey, the author of a book called “Presidential Temperament.”  Dr. Kiersey took the Meyers-Briggs Temperament inventories and developed what has come to be known as the Kiersey Temperament Sorter.  In so doing, he has established and identified several different types of character and temperament of people.  In his book, “Please Understand Me,” the reader may use the Kiersey Temperament Sorter to get an idea of his or her personality and temperament traits.  With his history and experience, Kiersey has examined the people who have become a President of the US and set out his analysis in “Presidential Temperaments.”  In this program, originally broadcast in November of 1993 when Radio Curious was called Government, Politics and Ideas, we’ll be talking about the book and some of the temperaments of the various Presidents.

Dr. David Kiersey recommends "Killer Angels," by Michael Shaara & The Hornblower Series, by Horatio Hormblower.

Originally Broadcast: November 19, 1993

Click here to begin listening.


M. Wayne Knight

Rural American Artist in Cambodia

Wayne Knight, an artist based in Mendocino County, California with over 40 years of experience, traveled very little before he found himself in Phnom Phen, Cambodia in 1995 and 1996.  He spent just under a year there, looking, seeing, and painting scenes that previously were beyond his imagination.  Wayne Knight also worked with the Cambodian Defenders’ Project in developing computer access to their legal resources in Cambodia.  His experience verified his security and, in many ways, enhanced his continuing growth as an artist.  Other programs you may enjoy are with Daniel Ellsberg discussing the Pentagon Papers and Vietman, and with Linda Kremer, Esq., a Marin County, California, public defender who took a leave of absence to direct the Cambodian Defenders Project.  They both may be found on this website.

Wayne Knight recommends “Living My Life,” by Emma Goldman.

Originally Broadcast: April 2, 1997

Click here to begin listening.


Niilo Koponen, Ph.D.

North To Alaska

People who crave space, freedom, adventure, and opportunities have long been attracted to Alaska.  In June of 1996 I spoke with Niilo Kopanan, the son of Finnish immigrants who grew up in New York City and moved to a mountain ridge near Fairbanks, Alaska in 1952.  At that time, land there was still open for homesteading.  He located his 160 acres and filed a homestead on the ridge where he still lives.  After several years there, in the mid 1950s, he returned to the lower 48 states to earn a Ph.D.  Yet the magnet of Alaska pulled him back where he became a university professor and a member of the Alaska legislature, and he’s been there ever since.

Niilo Koponen, Ph.D. recommends “The life story of Elizabeth Morgan” by Ernest Morgan.

Originally Broadcast: June 18, 1996

Click here to begin listening.


Linda Kremer

The Legal Defense of Jailed Cambodians

Attorney Linda Kremer, a Public Defender in Marin County, California, worked for thirteen months in Phnom Phen, Cambodia, in 1996 and 1997 as Director of the Cambodian Defenders’ Project.  The Cambodian Defenders’ Project recruits and trains Khmer men and women to serve as Public Defenders in the criminal courts of Cambodia.  Cambodian law requires that no person be detained in excess of 48 hours without being charged with a crime or be held without trial from longer than six months.  In practice, these rights are rarely honored.  Without legal defense, those is prison are powerless to request compliance. Other programs you may enjoy are with Daniel Ellsberg discussing the Pentagon Papers and Vietman, and with Wayne Knight, a Mendocino County artist who was also associated with the Cambodian Defenders Project. They both may be found on this website.

Linda Kremer recommends “Spontaneous Healing” & “Natural Healing,” both by Andrew While.

Originally Broadcast: March 26, 1997

Click here to begin listening.


Sam La Budde

Getting Dolphins Out of Tuna Nets

My guest in this program is Sam La Budde, a catalyst, if not the catalyst, in getting dolphins out of tuna nets.  He has been an activist with the Earth Island Institute and a number of other organizations.  In this conversation, we discussed the history of the dolphins, endangered species in Taiwan, and a potential economic boycott of redwood lumber.  This program was originally broadcast in September of 1992, when Radio Curious was called Government, Politics and Ideas.

Originally Broadcast: September 14, 1992

Click here to begin listening.


Dr. Gerda Lerner

The Foremother of Women's History

Fireweed: A Political Autobiography

The history of women has existed as long as humans have, but it was not until the last half of the 20th Century that women’s history received academic attention.  Professor Gerda Lerner is a pioneer of the study of women’s history and a founder of the movement to study and record the history of women.  She has placed particular emphasis on the differences among women due to class, race and sexual orientation.

Originally Broadcast: October 1, 2002

Click here to begin listening.


Professor Kristen Leslie

Strident Evanglical Themes at the U.S. Air Force Academy  

The series on evangelical Christianity at the United States Air Force Academy continues with Kristen Leslie, a professor of Pastoral Care and Counseling at the Yale University Divinity School.  Professor Leslie was invited to the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado to meet with the Academy chaplains and provide training in the counseling of female cadets who were victims of sexual assaults that had occurred at the Academy.  In the course of her visits in 2004 and 2005, Professor Leslie and the group of graduate students from the Yale Divinity School who accompanied her observed what she called “strident evangelical themes” at the Academy.  Professor Leslie testified before the Subcommittee on Military Personnel of the U.S. House of Representatives' Committee on Armed Services on June 28, 2005, at the Congressional hearing entitled “Religious Climate at the U.S. Air Force Academy,” and reported her observations of her visit that included:  the hanging of a banner containing an overtly Christian message by the football coach in the team locker room, an Air Force Academy commander leading a “challenge and response” cheer about Jesus in front of a group of cadets of mixed faith, distribution of flyers advertising religious events in the cadet dining hall and over the public address system, failure of the Air Force Academy to consider the religious practices of cadets of minority faiths when setting the cadet schedule, and public expressions of faith by senior staff and faculty members, in some cases in inappropriate venues such as classrooms.  Interviews with MeLinda Morton, the Air Force Academy Chaplain who resigned the end of July 2005, and Attorney Mikey Wienstein, a 1977 graduate of the Air Force Academy, both of whom are outspoken critics of the inaction on the part of the Air Force Academy leadership may be found here on the Radio Curious website.  The Harvard University Committee on the Study of Religion has a detailed report, with abundant links to other articles on this issue that may be found at www.pluralism.org.  Information about Professor Leslie’s testimony before Congress may be found at www.yale.edu/divinity/press.

Professor Kristen Leslie recommends "Ex Libris: Confessions of a Common Reader," by Ann Fadiman.

Originally Broadcast: August 30, 2005

Click here to begin listening.


Abraham Lincoln & James Getty

The 16th President

In 1995, James A. Getty, who appears in public as Abraham Lincoln, visited Ukiah, California and joined us in the studios of Radio Curious.  In talking with President Lincoln about his life, the events of his time and about his presidency, the conversation focused upon the economics of the mid-19th century.  I asked Mr. Lincoln to give us his opinion about the effect that Eli Whitney’s cotton gin had on the spread of slavery.

Abraham Lincoln and James Getty recommend "Malice Toward None," by Steven Oats.

Originally Broadcast: March 7, 1996

Click here to begin listening.


Paul M. Lisnik

Juries: Fair or Corruptible

The Hidden Jury, and Other Tactics Lawyers Use to Win

What happens when a guilty person is acquitted of crime?  Or worse, when an innocent person is convicted of a crime?  This injustice can sometimes be prevented with the help of jury consultants, people who assist lawyers in picking juries in all types of trials, not just criminal trials. Paul Lisnik, the author of “The Hidden Jury and Other Tactics Lawyers Use to Win” is an attorney, jury consultant and journalist, who advised and assisted in the O.J. Simpson other trials.  He debunks the myth that juries are fair and impartial; that if someone commits a crime, they get convicted; that only guilty people are ultimately put to death; and that only the wealthy or famous can afford a trial consultant.  In this interview recorded in March 2005 Paul Lisnik begin with his interpretation of the jury system.

  Paul M. Lisnik recommends “Bush World, Enter At Your Own Risk” by Marueen Doud.

Originally Broadcast: June 28, 2005

Click here to begin listening.


Gregorio Luke

Mexican Culture in the United States

The governments of most countries in the world send an ambassador to other countries to talk about and promote what their country is like and carry on political affairs between the two countries.  These ambassadors often have assistants that are called “cultural attaches”.  They present the culture, the folklore and the history from the country where they’re from and the country where they are.  In this program from the archives of Radio Curious, recorded in 1997, we visit with Gregorio Luke, who then was the counsel for cultural affairs for Mexico.  He spent 8 ½ years in Washington DC, and at the time this program was recorded he had been working at the Mexican Consulate in Los Angeles for eighteen months.

Gregorio Luke recommends "The Letters of Vincent Van Gogh," by Vincent Van Gogh.

Originally Broadcast: November 7, 1997

Click here to begin listening.


George Mann & Julius Margolin

Union Folk Songs

Julius Margolin and George Mann, two men separated in age by almost 46 years, are what might be called traveling troubadours.  They carry the message of working people in song and spirit, bringing a wealth of union history wherever they go.

George Mann recommends "Bury my Heart at Wounded Knee," by Dee Brown. Julain Margolin recommends books authored by Michael Moore.

Originally Broadcast: May 6, 2003

Click here to begin listening.


Joseph Marshall III

The End of a Nation: the Lakota Tribe

The Day the World Ended at Little Bighorn; a Lakota History

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 an 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.

Joseph Marshall III recommends "The World We Used to Live in: Remembering the Powers of the Medicine Men," by Vine Deloria.

Originally Broadcast: July 4, 2007 and July 11, 2007

Click here to begin listening to Part One.

Click here to begin listening to Part Two.


Glenn McGourty

The Slow Food Movement

How can we assure ourselves that the food we eat is safe, nutritious and energy-efficient?  If we are what we eat, we ought to know what we will become.  That may be the concept underlying what is coming to be known as the slow food movement.  Glenn McGourty is the wine growing and plant science advisor for the University of California Cooperative Extension for Lake and Mendocino Counties in Northern California.

Glenn McGourty recommends "The Origins and Ancient History of Wine," by Patrick McGovern.

Originally Broadcast: January 4, 2005

Click here to begin listening.


Edmund Morris

Who was Ronald Reagan?  One Opinion

Dutch, A Memoir of Ronald Reagan

A President of the United States is frequently a biographer’s subject who usually acts with second-hand information and without explicit authority from the President, himself.  In 1985, Edmund Morris, who was born in Kenya and educated in South Africa, was authorized and appointed by Ronald Reagan to be the official biographer for the 40th President of the United States.  Morris, who characterizes Reagan as a man difficult to truly know, had unprecedented access to President Reagan both in and out of the White House.  He met regularly with Reagan and reviewed Reagan’s daily handwritten White House journal as well as Reagan’s earlier writings.  Morris’ 1999 book, entitled “Dutch, A Memoir of Ronald Reagan,” is narrated by a fictional character, quite uncommon in most biographical interpretations, and tells the story of President Reagan.

Edmund Morris recommends "Guard of Honor" by James Gould Cozzens.

Originally Broadcast: November 30, 1999

Click here to begin listening.


Rev. MeLinda Morton

Evangelical Proselytization at the United States Air Force Academy

This program with MeLinda Morton, a Lutheran minister who resigned from active duty as a chaplain at the United States Air Force Academy effective July 31, 2005, continues our series on evangelical proselytization within the United States Air Force and at the United States Air Force Academy in Coloradio Springs, Colorado.  This interview was recorded on August 19, 2005, and begins with Rev. Morton describing her duties as a pastoral chaplain to the cadets at the Air Force Academy and the issues that led up to her resignation. If you are interested in this topic, please listen to interview with Mikey Weinstein, an Air Force Academy graduate and a former attorney in the Reagan White House.

Rev. MeLinda Morton recommends “No Future, Queer Theory and the Death Drive,” by Lee Edelman.

Originally Broadcast: August 23, 2005

Click here to begin listening.


 Mother Jones & Ronnie Gilbert

The Most Dangerous Woman in America

Mary Harris Jones, Mother Jones, was born in 1830.  She lived a quiet, non-public life until she was approximately 47 years old and then, for almost the next fifty years, she was a fiery union organizer, strike leader, and fighter for safe and humane working conditions, the eight hour day, and child labor laws.  Around the turn of the century, she was called the most dangerous woman in America.  Her legacy has lived on in the form of a magazine that bears the name, Mother Jones; and in the form of a one-woman play about her life, produced, acted and written by singer and songwriter Ronnie Gilbert.

 Mother Jones recommends any books by Leo Tolstoy. Ronnie Gilbert recommends "Hawaii," by James Mechiner.

Originally Broadcast: March 12, 1997

Click here to begin listening.


John Muir & Lee Stetson

An Early American Conservationist

The Wild Muir

One of the greatest early conservationists of America was a Scottish immigrant named John Muir who, as a young boy, went first to Wisconsin and then later, as a young man in the 1860s, moved onward to California.  A friend of President Theodore Roosevelt, he successfully sought to preserve the spectacular Yosemite Valley and the Sierra Nevada range; it was joy in his lifetime. Yet the loss of the equally spectacular Hetch Hetch Valley to a dam to provide water for San Francisco was his greatest sorrow.  John Muir founded the Sierra Club and he has been credited with founding the National Park System in the United States.  In this program I spoke with John Muir in the person of Lee Stetson.

John Muir recommends "Sixty Miles from Contentment," by M.H. Dunlop.

Originally Broadcast: October 20, 1995

Click here to begin listening.


Maria Stewart

Sandra Kamusukiri

A Visit With a Free Black Women - Boston 1840

Maria W. Stewart, as characterized by professor and scholar Sandra Kamusakiri, was a free black woman who lived in Boston, MA, from the 1820s to the early 1840s.  She was the first American born woman to lecture in public on political themes and likely the first African-American to speak out in defense of women’s rights.  A forerunner to Frederick Douglass and Sojourner Truth, she was intensely religious and regarded as outspoken and controversial during her time. For more than a century, Maria W. Stewart’s life contributions remained obscured, illustrating the double pressures of racism and sexism on the lives African-American women.  I met with Mariah W. Stewart in the person of Professor Sandra Kamusukiri during the 1996 Democracy in America Chautauqua, held in Ukiah, California.

Maria Stewart recommends "The Fair Sketches of Women," by John Adams and "The Bible."

Originally Broadcast: November 27, 1996

Click here to begin listening.


Bernard Offen

Surviving the Holocaust

My Hometown Concentration Camp

Bernard Offen, age 72, survived five Nazi concentration camps in Poland during World War Two, when he was a young teenager. He now leads tours of these concentration camps and tells his story in this interview.

Bernard Offen recommends "My Hometown Concentration Camp," by Bernard Offen.

Originally Broadcast: May 3, 2005

Click here to begin listening.


David Osborn

The Papal Conclave

The Last Pope

It is no secret that the papal conclave met April 18, 2005 to elect the head of one of the world’s few remaining imperial monarchies.  However, those participating in the conclave and those assisting the Cardinal’s who will elect the next pope are sworn to secrecy regarding all the events within this historic gathering.  In this edition of Radio Curious, we visit with papal scholar David Osborn, the author of “the Last Pope” who we interviewed in June 2004.  “The Last Pope” is a novel about the lives and the papal competition of two Cardinals of the Catholic Church, after the death of a conservative and long tenured Pope.  In this interview David Osborn discusses the process and some of the politics of electing the successor to Pope John Paul II.  When I spoke with David Osborn from his home in Connecticut, I asked him about what he believed would occur just prior to the opening of the conclave on April 18, 2005.

David Osborn recommends "Remembrance of Things Past,"  by Marcel Proust.

Originally Broadcast: April 19, 2005

Click here to begin listening.


David Osborn

Papal Politics & The Election of a New Pope

The Last Pope

“The Last Pope,” by David Osborn, takes us inside the world of the Vatican and the American branch of the Catholic Church.  Fictional relationships between the conservative and reform branches of the Catholic Church are revealed in a novel that combines character from both groups.

David Osborn recommends "Naked," by David Sedaris, "Blindness," by Jose Saramago, "Bel Canto," by Ann Patchett & "Remembrance of Things Past," by Marcel Proust.

Originally Broadcast: June 8, 2004

Click here to begin listening.


Frank Pacino

Life in the Marine Corps

When recruiters from the Armed Forces of the United States seek out volunteers, they often portray military life to be a great adventure.  They talk of schooling, travel and excitement.  Sometimes that is not the case.  In this edition of Radio Curious, we visit Sgt. Frank Pacino, who spent his early life in Covelo, California and then moved to Ukiah, California.  Frank Pacino was recruited into the Marine Corps in early 2001 and is now a Sergeant.  He was one of the first troops to go into Iraq in 2002, where he spent approximately six months.  He was returned to Iraq in 2004 for a year.

Frank Pacino recommends "Bush At War," by Bob Woodward.

Originally Broadcast: May 17, 2005

Click here to begin listening.


Pio Pico & Roberto Garza

Meet the Last Mexican Governor of California

In this program, we are going to go back into California history about 150 years, and visit with the last Mexican governor of California, Pio Pico.  Pio Pico was born at the San Gabriel Mission in 1801, of Spanish, Italian, Indian and African ancestry.  Both as a politician and as an entrepreneur, he espoused the views of many native-born Californarios over distant seats of government.  As the last Mexican governor of California, he presided over the secularization of the missions, and turned over their vast land holdings to private hands.  Although he fled California during the American takeover, Pio Pico returned to build the first major hotel in Los Angeles.  Later, he served on the Los Angeles City Council.  I met with Pio Pico in the person of Roberto Garza in February of 1998.

Pio Pico recommends "Pio Pico, A Historical Narrative," by Pio Pico. Roberto Graza recommends "Pio Pico Miscellany," by Martin Cole & "Decline of the Californios," by Leonard Pitt.

Originally Broadcast: February 27, 1998

Click here to begin listening.


John Pinches

All Politics is Local Including Marijuana

The concept that all politics is 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.


Originally Broadcast: August 7, 2007

Click here to begin listening.


Neil Proto

Law As A Tool For Social Change

To A High Court: The Tumult and Choices that Led to United States v. SCRAP

Law a tool for social change is the subject of this edition of Radio Curious, and it’s also reason why I decided to be an attorney.  Neil Proto, now a veteran Washington D.C. attorney, was a law student in the early 1970s in Washington D.C. and one of several law students in a group called SCRAP (Student’s Challenging Regulatory Agency Procedures) which sued the Interstate Commerce Commission of the United States and the nation’s railroads for what they believed was a violation of the NEPA, the National Environmental Protection Act.   The regulations, which they successfully challenged, discouraged the movement of materials that could be recycled and encouraged the movement of raw materials.  The Federal court issued an injunction, ordered an environmental impact report be prepared and in the end the regulations were overturned.  The story is told in Neil Proto’s book, “To A High Court: The Tumult and Choices that Led to United States v. SCRAP.”  For the past 35 years, Neil Proto has been practicing and teaching law in the Nation’s capital.   In this conversation, recorded in early February, 2006, we discuss the SCRPA lawsuit, importance of citizen involvement in the use of the law as a tool for social change and how court rulings in recent decades have made this involvement more difficult.

  Neil Proto recommends “The Prince of Our Disorder:  The Life of T.E. Lawrence,” by John E. Mack..

Originally Broadcast: February 14, 2006

Click here to begin listening.


Charles Reich

A Non-Marxist View of Material Capitalism

The Greening of America & Opposing the System

The market economy often seems to have many inherent problems.  Indeed, a Marxist historical view presupposes that the fundamental contradictions of capitalism will inevitably lead to socialism.  Far from this extreme, Charles Reich, author of “The Greening of America” and, more recently, “Opposing the System,” believes that individuals must be nonetheless confronted with these contradictions and the human conditions created by material capitalism.

Charles Reich recommends "The Poetry of Colleridge," by Charles R. Woodring.

Originally Broadcast: November 4, 1996

Click here to begin listening.


Robert Reich

Liberals v. Neo-Cons

Reason, Why Liberals Will Win the Battle for America

Looking back at the history of our nation, certain political trends can show swings from one political view to another.  In an election year, we often take a political position in favor of how we each think our government ought to be run.  Robert B. Reich, a former Secretary of Labor under the first Clinton administration and now a professor at Brandeis University and the University of California at Berkeley, is the author of “Reason, Why Liberals Will Win the Battle for America.”

Originally Broadcast: July 13, 2004

Click here to begin listening.


Elana Rozenman

Jewish, Muslim & Christian Understanding

In June, 2002 I overheard an American woman now living in Israel passionately describe her belief that teaching children to be suicide bombers is the worst form of child abuse imaginable. I invited Elana Radley Rosenman, an organizer of the Women’s Interfaith Encounter, a group of Muslim, Christian and Jewish women who meet regularly in Jerusalem, to be our guest on this edition of Radio Curious.

Elana Rozenman recommends "Yet a Stranger: Why Black Americans Still Don't Feel at Home," Debra Mathis.

Originally Broadcast: July 23, 2002

Click here to begin listening.


Jeff Ruch

How to be a Whistleblower

The Art of Anonymous Activism:  Serving the Public While Surviving Public Service

“The Art of Anonymous Activism:  Serving the Public While Surviving Public Service” is a short book published by three public interest organizations based in Washington DC: POGO, the Project on Government Oversight (www.pogo.org), GAP, the Government Accountability Project (www.whistleblower.org), and PEER, Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (www.peer.org).  Jeff Ruch is the executive director of PEER and the book’s co-editor.

Originally Broadcast: January 20, 2003

Click here to begin listening.


Domingo Sarmiento & Daniel Lewis

An Argentine President

Domingo Sarmiento, a teacher and later President of the Republic of Argentina, spent several years traveling in Europe and the United States in the mid-19th Century.  He spent six weeks in the US in the fall of 1847 and later published his account of this visit, selectively interpreting what he saw and experienced to conform to his ideas.  In this archive edition of Radio Curious, I visit with Domingo Sarmiento in the person of Professor Daniel Lewis, a scholar-presenter in the 1996 Democracy in America Chautauqua.  I met with Domingo Sarmiento during a break in the Chautauqua programming in Ukiah, California, and asked him what he saw the future of the American Union to be, from his perspective in 1843.

Domingo Sarmiento recommends any book by James Fenimore Cooper. Daniel Lewis recommends "The Invention of Argentina," by Nicolas Shumway.

Originally Broadcast: July 27, 1996

Click here to begin listening.


Eric Schlosser

Do You Really Want to Eat That?

Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal

Eric Schlosser, the author of “Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal,” writes that it is not only what is served for human consumption that plagues the country, but the art of mass marketing to children – through organized promotions and ads in school buses, hallways and even bathroom stalls – that has serious side effects in society.

Eric Schlosser recommends "New Jack," by Ted Conover.

Originally Broadcast: August 1, 2002

Click here to begin listening.


Juliet Schor

Selling (to) Our Children

Born To Buy: The Commercialized Child and the New Consumer Culture

In the past 50 years, the advent of television as a medium for advertising has had significant effects on the buying habits of everyone, and especially on children.  MRI scans on the brain, and the development of neuro-marketing are used to determine more receptive ways to market a myriad of products to all of us.  Studies that follow the behavior of children show that the more involved a child is in the consumer culture, the more likelihood that the child will be depressed, be more anxious, have frequent headaches and/or stomach aches.  And, the most heavily advertised products are more likely to be addictive to the users of those products.  “Born to Buy: The Commercialized Child and New Consumer Culture” by Professor Juliet Schor, of Boston College, presents a detailed discussion of these changes in the commercialized market place that is brought into almost every home and school.

Juliet Schor recommends "For Her Own Good," by Barbara Ehreneich and Diedre English.

Originally Broadcast: December 14, 2004

Click here to begin listening.


Pete Seeger

Thoughts from a Troubador:  An Interview with Pete Seeger

This archive edition of Radio Curious was originally recorded and broadcast in January of 1992 when Radio Curious was called “Government, Politics and Ideas.” Our guest is Pete Seeger, a folk musician and a very special person in the lives of many people around the world.  He brings songs of hope, peace, justice and equality wherever he goes. He was an inspiration to me when I first learned to play the 5-string banjo and when I took lessons from him, in what seems both long and ago and, just yesterday. We began our conversation when I asked him what he meant when he said “the world is in a state of uncertainty.”

Originally Broadcast: January 20, 1992

Click here to begin listening.


Richard Shoemaker

Barry Vogel, Esq.

Citizen Effort to Combat Big Box Takeover of a Small, Rural Community.

Contrary to the five to zero decision of the Ukiah City Council recommending a No Vote, Mendocino County Supervisor Jim Wattenburger, whose 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.

Richard Shoemaker recommends "Ripples From the Zambezi," Ernesto Sirolli.

Barry Vogel recommends "Big Box Swindle," Stacy Mitchell.

Originally Broadcast: August 22, 2007

Click here to begin listening.


Socrates & Ron Gross

Socrates of Athens, in Conversation

Socrates' Way: Seven Masterkeys to Using Your Mind to the Utmost

Socrates of Athens, who lived before the Common Era, is respected as one of the greatest independent thinkers of all time.  Socrates himself refused to be recognized as a teacher.  Instead, Plato, his well-known student and reporter of Socrates’ dialogues, tells us he asked to be seen as a “midwife of ideas.”  Socrates’ passion to achieve self-understanding, and the proper ways to live, continues to be studied and emulated to this day.

 Socrates recommends "The Trojan Women," by Euripides. Ron Gross recommends "The Clouds," by Aristophanes.

Originally Broadcast: January 13, 2003

Click here to begin listening.


Tim Stoen

Litigation to Save Old Growth Redwoods

The California law prohibiting unfair business practices is the basis for the 2003 lawsuit brought against the Pacific Lumber Company by the People of the State of California.  This case was brought when the Humboldt County, California, District Attorney alleged that Pacific Lumber provided inaccurate information to the California Department of Forestry as the basis for a timber harvest plan which would preserve certain old growth redwood trees in “The Headwaters” forest.  Tim Stoen is the Assistant District Attorney in Humboldt County and the lead attorney representing the People of the State of California in this case.

Tim Stoen recommends "John Adams and the American Revolution" & "The Lion and the Throne," by Catherine Drinker Bowen.

Originally Broadcast: September 23, 2003

Click here to begin listening.


Wesley Swearingen

Illegal FBI Break-Ins, Told By a Former Agent

FBI Secrets: An Agent's Expose

Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation have a history of illegal break-ins to homes and offices and conducting wiretaps without a search warrant.  In the years when J. Edgar Hoover was the Director of the FBI, these warrantless break-ins came to be known as “black-bag jobs”.   This archive edition of Radio Curious is a December 1995 interview with Wesley Swearingen a former FBI agent who in 1995 wrote a book called FBI Secrets: An Agent’s Expose. His book describes some of the “black-bag” warrantless searches in which he was involved, and his opinion of those activities.  He ends his book by saying that the Hoover era will continue to haunt the FBI because Hoover knowingly undermined the United States Constitution. When I spoke with Wesley Swearingen I asked him what he meant by that.

Wesley Swearingen recommends "Official and Confidential: The Secret Life of J. Edgar Hoover," by Anthony Summers.

Originally Broadcast: December 20, 1995

Click here to begin listening.


Rep. Mike Thompson (D)

Interview with Congressman Mike Thompson, February 2005

Each of the 435 members of the House of Representatives in the United States Congress represents approximately 680,000 people, and is elected every two years.  Mike Thompson is in his 4th term representing California’s 1st Congressional District that includes the northwest coast of California.  Congressman Thompson visited the studios of Radio Curious on February 22, 2005 and we discuss many topics beginning with a question posed to me earlier that day: “When will the Democrats get their act together…”

Rep. Mike Thompson (D) recommends “Don’t Think of an Elephant, Know your Values and Frame the Debate—An Essential Guide for Progressives,: by George Lakoff; “What’s the Matter With Kansas, How Conservatives Won the Heart of America,” by Thomas Hart; and “Charlie Wilson’s War: The Extraordinary Story of the Largest Covert Operation in History,” by George Crile.

Originally Broadcast: February 22, 2005

Click here to begin listening.


Rep. Mike Thompson

A Visit with Congressman Mike Thompson, November 2003

Our guest in this program is Congressman Mike Thompson, who represents Mendocino County in the House of Representatives.  He expressed his frustration with the way the Republican leadership of the House of Representatives controls the House, in the first fully Republican government in the US since 1953.

Rep. Mike Thompson recommends "Fire," by Sebastian Junger.

Originally Broadcast: November 18, 2003

Click here to begin listening.


Joshua Tickell

Biodiesel: An Oil-less Fuel

From the Fryer to the Fuel Tank: The Complete Guide to Using Vegetable Oil as an Alternative Fuel

Biodiesel, an alternative to the dwindling supply of fossil fuels, is created from processed vegetable oil and is available anywhere vegetable oil is grown or used.  Joshua Tickell is the author of “From the Fryer to the Fuel Tank: The Complete Guide to Using Vegetable Oil as an Alternative Fuel."  In this program, he shared his ideas on the topic.

Joshua Tickell recommends "Connections," by James Burke.

Originally Broadcast: July 22, 2003

Click here to begin listening.


Mike Tidwell

Destruction of Louisiana

Bayou Farewell, The Rich Life and Tragic Death of Louisiana's Cajun Coast

It is now known that the destruction to southern Louisiana that occurred as a result of hurricane Katrina in August 2005 was anticipated by some and should have been anticipated by others. In this interview recorded in April 2003, and first broadcast in February 2006, our guest Mike Tidwell, is the author of "Bayou Farewell:  The Rich Life and Tragic Death of Coastal Louisiana."  Tidwell describes how that vase marshland of coastal Louisiana, home to millions of migratory birds and the source of one-third of America’s seafood, is literally washing out to sea.  The bayou region, 6000 square miles in size, remains the fastest disappearing landmass on earth. An acre of solid ground turns to water every 20 minutes.  An area the size of Manhattan Island washes away every ten months.

Mike Tidwell recommends "Oil Notes," by Rick Bass.

Originally Broadcast: February 28, 2006

Click here to begin listening.


Sam Totten

Genocide in Darfur

Genocide is the intent to exterminate in whole or in part a specific group of people often based on nationality, ethnicity, race or religion.  For the past two years, in the Darfur region of the nation of Sudan, located in north central Africa and populated primarily by black Africans, the Sudanese government has been committing racial genocide.  Reports are that as many as 400,000 black African civilians have been murdered by the Sudanese government together with Arab rebel groups in Darfur.  Professor Sam Totten, a scholar in Genocide Studies at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, visited the Darfur area in the fall of 2004 and has been examining this present day massacre that most of the world has chosen to ignore. I spoke with Professor Totten from his home in Arkansas and asked him to explain the reasons behind the genocide.


Sam Totten recommends "Shake Hands With the Devil: the Failure of Humanity in Rwanda," by Romeo Dallaire.

Originally Broadcast: June 2, 2005

Click here to begin listening.


David Von Drehle

The Fire That Changed America

Triangle, the Fire That Changed America

Until September 11, 2001, The Triangle Shirtwaste Fire on March 25, 1911 was the deadliest workplace disaster in the history of New York City.  David Von Drehle, a political writer for the Washington Post, is the author of “Triangle, the Fire That Changed America,” a detailed examination of how one event changed the course of the 20th century politics and labor relations.

David Von Drehle recommends "Plunkitt of Tammany Hall," by William Riordan.

Originally Broadcast: September 9, 2003

Click here to begin listening.


Jerome Waldie

Fair Play For Frogs, Part 2

As a lawyer and a student of political science, I have come to appreciate the anomalies and humor of politics.  One story that fits both of those categories well is the relationship between Nestle J. Frobish, the Chair-creature of World-Wide Fair Play for Frogs Committee and his former nemesis and the former Congressional Representative from the region just east of San Francisco, California, Jerome R. Waldie.  Their dissension arose in 1961 when Waldie was a freshman member of the California State Assembly and chose to introduce what came to be known as the “Frog Murder Bill,” resulting in Frobish organizing what turned out to be a 45 year campaign to get Waldie to renounce, what Frobish called his “vestigial impurities” visited upon him as the “mad butcher of the swamp.”  Waldie finally acceded in 2006 and in this interview recorded in mid June 2007 tells us why.

Jerome Waldie recommends "It Can't Happen Here" by Sinclair Lewis.

Originally Broadcast: June 11, 2007

Click here to begin listening.


Michael Waldman

The President Speaks

My Fellow Americans, The Most Important Speeches of America’s Presidents from George Washington to George W. Bush

Michael Waldman, an expert on the Presidency, wrote or edited nearly 2000 speeches, including several of President Clinton’s State of the Union speeches.  He is also the editor of “My Fellow Americans, The Most Important Speeches of America’s Presidents from George Washington to George W. Bush.”

Michael Waldman recommends "Burr," by Gore Vidal.

Originally Broadcast: January 20, 2004

Click here to begin listening.


Jim Wattenburger

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 develoment 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 the legalization of marijuana in two programs recorded September 23, 2007.

Jim Wattenburger recommends "Undaunted Courage," by Stephen A. Ambrose.

Originally Broadcast: September 26, 2007 October 3, 2007

Click here to begin listening to Part One.

Click here to begin listening to Part Two.  


Mikey Weinstein

Evangelical Christianity and the United States Air Force Academy

There are concerns that evangelical Christianity is close to being officially sanctioned at the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado, as well as within other areas of the United States’ military forces.  In this edition of Radio Curious we visit some of these issues with Mikey Weinstein, a graduate of Air Force Academy, a businessman and former attorney in the Reagan White House.  He describes how evangelical Christianity appears to have become the standard within the United States Air Force Academy that trains future leaders of the U.S. Air Force.  At the beginning of an Air Force career each new cadet, among many other things, takes an oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States.  These cadets are led by Brig.  Gen. Johnny A Weida, the current USAF Academy Commandant of Cadets.  On the official Air Force website, under character development, Brig. Gen. Weida is quoted as saying, "Our primary emphasis is to ensure every graduate has the character, honor, integrity, sense of service and excellence required of a second lieutenant in the world's greatest Air and Space force."  On July 29, 2005, the name of Brig Gen Weida, the number two officer of the Air Force Academy, was deleted from a list of Air Force generals to be promoted, shortly before the Senate voted on those promotions.  An April 28, 2005 report by American United for Separation of Church and State accused Brig Gen Weida of proselytizing to the cadets and specifically endorsing evangelical Christianity at the Academy.  It is suggested that this may be a reason why he was not promoted. This interview with Mikey Weinstein, who worked as Assistant General Counsel in the Reagan White House Office of Administration, was recorded by telephone from his home in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on August 3, 2005. 

Mikey Weinstein recommends "The Sins of Scripture." by John Shelby Spong.

Originally Broadcast: August 9, 2005

Please click here to begin listening.


Mikey Weinstein

Update on Evangelism at the U.S. Air Force Academy

The concerns that evangelical Christianity continues to be proselytized at the United States Air Force Academy, in Colorado Springs, Colorado, have not lessened since our August 9, 2005 interview with Air Force Academy graduate Attorney Mikey Weinstein.  Mikey Weinstein, of Albuquerque, New Mexico is a former Assistant General Counsel in the Reagan White House and former General Counsel for H. Ross Perot.  In October 2005, Weinstein sued the United States Air Force in the United States District Court for the District of New Mexico, alleging violations of the Establishment clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution because of the evangelical proselytization at the Air Force Academy.  Details may be found in the first interview with Attorney Weinstein, and the subsequent interviews with Reverend MeLinda Morton and Professor Kristen Leslie at www.radiocurious.org.  In this interview, recorded on December 11, 2005, Attorney Weinstein discusses the current status of the litigation; the “Officers’ Christian Fellowship” located at many of the 702 United States Military bases in 132 different counties around the world; what he believes to be the religious efforts and goals of some evangelical Christians; and the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, a non-profit corporation he is organizing.

  Mikey Weinstein recommends “Constantine’s Sword, The Church and the Jews, A History,” by James Carroll,.

Originally Broadcast: December 13, 2005

Click here to begin listening.



An Afghan Woman's Struggle for Freedom

Zoya's Story, An Afghan Woman's Struggle for Freedom

Zoya, a member of the RAWA, the Revolutionary Association of Women of Afghanistan, tells the story of her childhood, her parents and her parents’ disappearance.  She describes the wrath that first the Russians, then the Taliban and then the Northern Alliance have brought to her country.   Along with the suffering, she describes the hope and spirit carried in the hearts of the Afghan people.

 Zoya recommends the collected speeches of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr..

Originally Broadcast: June 18, 2002

Click here to begin listening.