A Public Affair


John Quinlan

John Quinlan


Carousel Bayrd

Carousel Bayrd


Karma Chavez and Tim Hansel

Karma Chavez & Tim Hansel


Allen Ruff

Allen Ruff


Esty Dinur

Esty Dinur

A Public Affair is WORT‘s daily hour-long talk program. It aims to engage listeners in a conversation on social, cultural, and political issues of importance. The guests range from local activists and scholars to notable national and international figures.

Join the conversation!

Listeners may call in and ask questions of the guests. Callers are asked to pose a question relevant to the subject at hand and refrain from calling more than once per week. You can join us on social media as well!

For booking questions

Please contact Molly Stentz at (608) 256-2001 or newsflash@wort-fm.org.


Autonomous Solidarity Organization

01/14/13 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

aso On Monday January 14th, host John Quinlan spoke with a panel of representatives about their organization, the Autonomous Solidarity Organization. He interviewed outgoing president Bill Fetty, current president Damon Terrell, and Vice President and Chair Brel Hutton-Opkalaeke.

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Listening to the Land

01/11/13 1:21 PM | A Public Affair

Listen to the land On Friday January 11th, host Esty Dinur spoke with the renowned environmentalist and author Derrick Jensen.

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01/10/13 1:00 PM | A Public Affair

Rozoff, Rick1 Allen interviewed Rick Rozoff from “Stop NATO.com.” They discussed how, according to Rozoff, NATO has exacerbated conflicts around the world through select and ultimately detrimental intervention.

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Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)

01/8/13 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

stopviolenceagainstwomen On Tuesday January 8th, Cynthia Lin spoke with a panel of guests regarding the Violence Against Women Act. She interviewed Tony Gilbart from WI Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Cecilia Gilhouse of UNIDOS Against Violence, and Kabzuag Vaj of Freedom Inc.

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Gay Press, Gay Power

01/7/13 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

GayPressGayPower_COVER-color On Monday January 7th, host John Quinlan spoke with Tracy Baim and Patrick Farabaugh who discussed the role of the LGBT press in America in advancing LGBT rights.

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Getting Past Capitalism

01/4/13 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

kaufman.jpg On Friday January fourth, host Esty Dinur spoke with author Cynthia Kaufman about her book, “Getting Past Capitalism: History, Vision, Hope.” Kaufman is the director of the Institute of Community and Civic Engagement at De Anza College as well as a teacher of Philosophy. She has written the book, “Ideas for Action: Relevant Theory for Radical Change” (South End Press 2003). She is a lifelong activist, having been involved with Central America Solidarity work, union organizing, work against police abuse, housing rights, and most recently work to prevent destruction of the climate. “Getting Past Capitalism begins with a critique of the impacts of capitalism on human society and the environment. It looks in new ways at what capitalism is and at how it is reproduced. That investigation opens the door to fresh ways of looking at how to challenge it. Getting Past Capitalism looks at some fundamental questions about how capitalism comes to look like a system that is unbeatable, and how people come to have desires that work to reinforce capitalism. The book uses this analysis to develop ideas about how to challenge capitalism. It argues that rather than looking for the fulcrum point in a system that will make it able to be overthrown, we should try to understand what kinds of practices open more spaces for stopping the reproduction of capitalist processes, and what kinds of structures need to be developed to make capitalism a less important part of our world. The book includes a critique of capitalism and presentation of alternatives to capitalism, many of which already exist. It explores strategies for developing and strengthening those alternatives.” – Lexington Books, 2012             Read more about the book: http://faculty.deanza.edu/kaufmancynthia/stories/storyReader$112     Read more about Cynthia Kaufman: http://faculty.deanza.edu/kaufmancynthia/     Listen to the entire interview:

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Silica Sand Mining in Wisconsin

01/3/13 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

sand On Thursday January 3rd, host Allen Ruff took on the controversial issue plaguing Wisconsin of silica (frac) sand mining here in Wisconsin. He spoke with a panel of four guests: Steve Faulkner, author of the book “Water Walk: a Passage of Ghosts,” Linda Three Crows Meadowlark, a Native American rights activist and environmentalist, Edie Ehlert, Vice Chair of the Crawford Stewardship Project in Crawford County WI, and Jim Tittle, director of the film “The Price of Sand.” On the website for his film, Jim Tittle describes his project: “We’re making a documentary about the frac sand mining boom in Minnesota and Wisconsin. Due to a rapid increase in demand, pure silica sand has become a valuable commodity, and mines are opening here at a rapid rate. The silica used in hydraulic fracturing (aka : “fracking”), has other uses– glass manufacturing and toothpaste, for instance — and a few established mines have been in operation here for decades. But now, new companies have arrived, and land with accessible silica deposits is selling for high prices. In addition to a bonanza for a few lucky landowners, the new mines promise jobs and economic stimulus for the small towns and rural areas nearby. A year ago, an oil company bought a tract of land in near my mother’s house, in rural Goodhue County, Minnesota. The prospect of an open pit mine led to the formation of an opposition group, a series of public meetings, and a temporary county moratorium on frac sand mining… Good people are on both sides of the issue, and sometimes the facts aren’t obvious. “The Price of Sand” will be a candid documentary about what the frac sand industry is doing in this region. We’ll talk to local people and we’ll also dig for information, interviewing experts and officials.”   Learn more about “The Price of Sand:” http://thepriceofsand.com/   Learn more about the Crawford Stewardship Project: http://crawfordstewardshipproject.org/   Listen to the entire program:  

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Illegal People

01/2/13 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

Mixtec Migrant Farm Workers in Taft On Wednesday January 2nd, host Karma Chavez spoke with author, journalist, and photographer David Bacon about his work regrading NAFTA and immigration. For the last twenty years David Bacon, through his work as a writer and photojournalist, has researched the relationship between the global economy, labor, and migration. In his book “Illegal People” published in 2009, he exposes the failures of our national policy produces which lead to increasing displacement, migration, immigration raids, and an increasingly divided and polarized society. pushing for an overhaul in how we think, debate, and legislate about and around immigration, Bacon promotes focus on human rights in this age of globalization. He is also author of the book “The Children of NAFTA” which discusses labor wars on the U.S./Mexico Border.   Read more about David Bacon: http://dbacon.igc.org/   Read more about the book “Illegal People:” http://www.amazon.com/Illegal-People-Globalization-Criminalizes-Immigrants/dp/0807042307   Read more about the book “The Children of NAFTA:” http://www.ucpress.edu/book.php?isbn=9780520244726   Listen to the entire interview:

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Hopes for the New Year

01/1/13 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

Freedom Inc On this special New Year’s Day edition of A Public Affair, we heard from Madison youth who shared their thoughts and hopes for the upcoming year. Cynthia Lin spoke with members of the youth led Madison based organization Freedom Inc. She was joined in the studio with Jaunita and Tasha from Freedom Inc.’s youth council and Quita Adams, one of Freedom inc.’s organizing coordinators.   According to their website, “Freedom, Inc is a grassroots organization with a vision of creating and building a world we want to live in. Starting as the Asian Freedom Project in 2000, it created youth-led collective learning groups to organize and mobilize on issues that affected their daily lives. In 2003, Freedom, Inc became an official non-profit organization. Since then, our work has grown to include people from other communities. Our mission is to engage low- to no-income communities of color to end violence against women folks, gender non-conforming folks, and young folks, which bring about deep social, political, cultural, and economic change. We organize around the root causes of violence, creating new definitions and solutions, and empowering all community members as agents of change to inspire and restore power of those most affected. We do this through leadership development and community organizing, in ways that are language-gender-generation and culture-specific to women, gender non-conforming, and youth, in African American and Southeast Asian families.” Read more about Freedom Inc.:  http://aboutfreedominc.com/ Listen to the entire show:

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Subversives: The FBI’s War on Student Radicals, and Reagan’s Rise to Power

12/31/12 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA On Monday December 31st, Norm Stockwell, subbing for John Quinlan, spoke with author and freelance journalist Seth Rosenfeld. Rosenfeld is “author of the best-selling book Subversives: The FBI’s War on Student Radicals, and Reagan’s Rise to Power, published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Subversives traces the FBI’s secret involvement with three iconic figures at Berkeley during the 1960s: the ambitious neophyte politician Ronald Reagan, the fierce but fragile radical Mario Savio, and the liberal University of California president Clark Kerr. Through these converging narratives, Rosenfeld tells a dramatic and disturbing story of FBI surveillance, illegal break-ins, infiltration, planted news stories, poison-pen letters and secret detention lists. He reveals how the FBI’s covert operations — led by Reagan’s friend J. Edgar Hoover — helped ignite an era of student protest, undermine the Democrats, and benefit Reagan personally and politically. At the same time, he vividly evokes the life of Berkeley in the early sixties — and shows how the university community became a battleground in an epic struggle between the government and free citizens.”   Read more about Rosenfeld: http://www.sethrosenfeld.com/index.html         Listen to the entire interview:

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A Public Affair
A Public Affair
News & Culture
Weekdays @ Noon
John Quinlan, Carousel Bayrd, Tim Hansel, Karma Chavez, Allen Ruff, & Esty Dinur
A Public Affair is WORT's daily hour-long talk program. It aims to engage listeners in a conversation on social, cultural, and political issues of importance. The guests range from local activists and scholars to notable national and international figures.

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