A Public Affair

Monday

John Quinlan

John Quinlan

Tuesday

Carousel Bayrd

Carousel Bayrd

Wednesday

Karma Chavez and Tim Hansel

Karma Chavez & Tim Hansel

Thursday

Allen Ruff

Allen Ruff

Friday

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.

LISTEN TO RECENT EPISODES

Power from the People: How to Organize, Finance, and Launch Local Energy Projects

11/12/12 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

greg-pahl-200 On Monday November 12th, host John Quinlan interviewed author Greg Pahl about his book released this year, “Power from the People: How to Organize, Finance, and Launch Local Energy Projects.” John Welch also contributed at the top of the hour to discuss Dane County’s innovative “bio-gas project,” essentially fueling vehicles with fuel made from garbage. This innovative project has received national and international attention, including a first place project recognition from the US Environmental Protection Agency, and international delegations visiting Madison have toured the county’s related facilities. Welch is the recycling project manager for Dane County Public Works. He is also the Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) Badger Chapter Director, as well as its International Director.   Pahl has written a plethora of articles on farming, wind power, solar energy, electric cars, biodiesel, “green” appliances, home building materials, and sustainable forestry management in publications such as The Vermont Times, Vermont Magazine, Champlain Business Journal, Vermont History, Middlebury College Magazine, and Mother Earth News. He has lived “off the grid” in a wood-heated home powered by a wind turbine and is the author of six books on sustainable living.     “More than ninety percent of the electricity we use to light our communities, and nearly all the energy we use to run our cars, heat our homes, and power our factories comes from large, centralized, highly polluting, nonrenewable sources of energy. It doesn’t have to be that way. In Power from the People, energy expert Greg Pahl explains how American communities can plan, finance, and produce their own local, renewable energy that is reliable, safe, and clean. Pahl uses examples from around the nation and the world to explore how homeowners, co-ops, nonprofits, governments, and businesses are already putting power in the hands of local communities through distributed energy programs and energy-efficiency measures. Renewable, community power is a necessary step on the path to energy security and community resilience, particularly as we face peak oil, cope with climate change, and address the need to transition to a more sustainable future.” -Chelsea Green Publishing (September 2012)   Read more about Greg Pahl at his website: http://www.gregpahl.com/   Listen to the entire interview:

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Veterans’ Issues

11/9/12 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

Veterans Day On Friday November 9th, Norm Stockwell subbing for Esty Dinur talked with a number of guests about veterans issues in tribute to Veterans’ Day on Monday. During the first part of the show, Norm spoke with Veterans for Peace member David Giffey who edited the book “Long Shadows: Veterans’ Paths to Peace.” Norm also spoke with Nick Velvet, member of Veterans for Peace and Vietnam Veterans Against the War. David Giffey’s book, “Long Shadows: Veterans’ Paths to Peace,” was “Winner of the 2008 Montaigne Medal, an award designated by the Hoffer Awards for thought-provoking titles. These are veterans with a point of view whose trajectories of belief had many different starting points, took many different paths, but in every case led to an abhorrence of war.; anti-war feeling among veterans has not been given the attention it deserves, and this volume is an attempt to correct that imbalance, writes Howard Zinn in the Foreword. Veterans speak of war and peace with a certain creditability that others lack. Having experienced war and peace more intimately than many others, their responses and thoughts reflect the life-defining or life-changing capacity of war. Long Shadows is a collection of 19 interviews with veterans who candidly discuss their paths from military involvement to peace activism. Beginning with a veteran of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade during the Spanish Civil War and ending with a veteran of the Iraq war, each tells a unique story with an individual perspective, and yet, each echos the message of the futility and destruction of war. The long shadows of war are evident in each of the interviews, with each participant hoping that his or her experience will inform others and contribute to the public discussion.” -Atwood Publishing Read more about David Giffey’s book: http://www.amazon.com/Long-Shadows-Veterans-Paths-Peace/dp/1891859641 Listen to the entire interview:

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Electoral Politics

11/8/12 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

mike_wagner On Thursday November 8th, Karma Chavez subbing for Allen Ruff interviewed Mike Wagner, Assistant Professor of Journalism at UW-Madison. He is an expert in electoral politics and discussed the election results from the perspective of his research.   Assistant Professor Wagner was the Project Director of the Congressional Elections Study (national survey conducted by the Center on Congress) in 2006. He was the Outstanding Educator of the Year in 2009 (Hazel R. McClymont Distinguished Teaching Fellow Award, 2012, at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln). He also served as moderator for the televised debate between U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-DE) and Jan Ting (R) in 2006 and co-authored the book, “Political Behavior in Midterm Elections,” with Elizabeth Theiss-Morse.   Read more about Mike Wagner: http://experts.news.wisc.edu/experts/1509       Listen to the entire interview:

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Post-Election Analysis

11/7/12 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

Tammy On Wednesday November 7th, the day after the Presidential election, News Coordinator Molly Stentz brought listeners valuable post-election analysis to help us understand the future implications of Tuesday’s election. She opened the lines up to listeners to share their questions and opinions regarding Tuesday’s national and local elections. ABC news wrote after President Obama’s win: “In a victory speech studded with the soaring rhetoric that first drew voters to him in 2008, Obama reminded the electorate what was still on his agenda — immigration reform, climate change and job creation. ‘Tonight, you voted for action not politics as usual.” he told supporters in Chicago. “You elected us to focus on your job, not ours.’ Obama told Romney supporters that ‘I have listened to you… you have made me a better president.’ He added, ‘I return to the White House more determined, more inspired than ever.’The election is a validation, if not an overwhelming mandate, in support of the president’s policies of the last four years, which included a major overhaul of the healthcare system and a drawdown of troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.”   Here in Wisconsin, Tammy Baldwin defeated Tommy Thomson. The Washington Post wrote regarding her success in the state: “Baldwin will take over for retiring Sen. Herb Kohl (D); she will be Wisconsin’s first female senator and the country’s first openly gay senator. But, she told supporters at a party in Madison, ‘I didn’t run to make history. I ran to make a difference.’ She reached out to her opponent and his supporters, promising to represent all Wisconsinites. ‘Tommy and I didn’t agree on much in this campaign but there can be no doubt that he shares my love for Wisconsin,” she said. “And even at the end of a long and sometimes bitter campaign, I’m still grateful for his service to our state.’ Baldwin’s win was part of several key ones for Senate Democrats that will help them retain their majority.”   Read more about Obama’s victory speech: http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/OTUS/president-obama-wins-reelection-promises-best/story?id=17655541#.UJwJoJHXgs4 Read more from the Washington Post regarding Tammy Baldwin’s win: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/election-2012/wp/2012/11/07/tammy-baldwin-declares-victory/ Listen to the entire show:

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Don’t Stop Thinking about the Music

11/7/12 5:05 AM | A Public Affair

Don't stop On this special Election Day episode of A Public Affair, host Cynthia Lin looked at how campaign music is employed to sway voters. Cynthia interviewed musicologist Benjamin Schoening and political scientist Eric Kasper about their book, Don’t Stop Thinking about the Music: The Politics of Songs and Musicians in Presidential Campaigns. This enthralling exploration into the power of campaign music will be featured at the Wisconsin Book Festival on Sunday, November 11th.   “In this insightful, erudite history of presidential campaign music, musicologist Benjamin Schoening and political scientist Eric Kasper explain how politicians use music in American presidential campaigns to convey a range of political messages. From Follow Washington to I Like Ike to I Got a Crush on Obama, they describe the ways that song use by and for presidential candidates has evolved, including the addition of lyrics to familiar songs, the current trend of using existing popular music to connect with voters, and the rapid change of music s relationship to presidential campaigns due to Internet sites like YouTube, JibJab, and Facebook. Readers are ultimately treated to an entertaining account of American political development through popular music and the complex, two-way relationship between music and presidential campaigns.” -Lexington Books   Read more about the Wisconsin Book Festival.   Read more about Don’t Stop Thinking about the Music.   Sample some of the music discussed: 2012 – Springsteen’s “We Take Care of Our Own“ 2012 – Kid Rock’s “Born Free“ 2008 – Stevie Wonder’s “Signed, Sealed, Delivered“ 2008 – Elvis’s “A Little Less Conversation“ 1992 – Fleetwood Mac’s “Don’t Stop“ 1992 – Patsy Cline’s “Crazy“ 1984 – Greenwood’s “God Bless the U.S.A.” 1972 – Simon & Garfunkel’s “Bridge over Troubled Water“ 1952 – “I Like Ike” (TV version commercial version) 1932 – Wardall’s “Happy Days Are Here Again” 1840 – “Tippecanoe and Tyler Too“   Listen to the show:

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Split Show: Pre-Election Coverage and Preview of the Upcoming WI Book Festival

11/5/12 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

WI book fest On Monday November 5th, host John Quinlan spoke with WORT News Coordinator Molly Stentz and Culture Editor of The Progressive Magazine Elizabeth DiNovella about President Obama’s visit to Madison during a tour of final campaign stops before Tuesday’s election. They also discussed voting and the possible outcomes of the Presidential election. In the second half of the program, John spoke to Alison Jonse Chaim and Megan Katz, Director and Managing Director of the Wisconsin Book Festival, about the upcoming events and literary festivities.     President Obama returned to our hometown Madison, Wisconsin for a final campaign rally. Bruce Springsteen joined him for a final burst of enthusiasm and a musical introduction aimed at bringing voters to the polls. Over 18,000 people attended stretching from Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. to the steps of the Capitol. Retiring Wisconsin Senator Herb Kohl and Democratic candidate Tammy Baldwin also spoke at the event.   According to the WI Book Festival Website, “The Wisconsin Book Festival is a free, five-day program of public events that takes place every Fall in downtown Madison. It is the state’s largest literary festival, drawing thousands of attendees annually. Since its inception in 2002, the Wisconsin Book Festival has been a showcase for literary talent from across the state of Wisconsin and beyond. It is a forum for people to come together and sit face to face and side by side, to talk and listen, whisper, laugh, cry, sing, sign, write notes, tell jokes, and give voice to their ideas.”       Learn more about Obama’s trip to Madison: http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-thousands-line-up-to-see-obama-in-madison-20121105,0,6384029.story Read more about the Wisconsin Book Festival: http://www.wisconsinbookfestival.org/overview Listen to the entire show:

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Hurricane Sandy

11/2/12 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

hurricane On Friday November 2nd, host Esty Dinur spoke with Dr. Wesler Lambert live from Haiti, a country devastated by the impact of hurricane Sandy. Dr. Lambert is Director of Monitoring and Evaluation for Zanmi Lasante, Partners In Health’s flagship project in Haiti. On the second half of the show, Esty spoke with University of Wisconsin Senior Researcher Chris Velden about charting the path of hurricane Sandy and the possible impact of global climate change in the creation of super storms.                                               The BBC reported on the horrific impact of Sandy in Haiti: “There are fears of food shortages after the hurricane, which hit on 24 October, damaged many crops in southern Haiti. Aid workers and officials are also on alert for an increase in cholera cases in the wake of widespread flooding. More than 50 people were killed in Haiti, which is still struggling to recover from the 2010 earthquake. Thousands of people are still living in makeshift shelters more than two years on from the devastating quake. The office of Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe made the renewed appeal for help on Sunday. There is concern that unsanitary conditions could led to an increase in cholera cases. More than 7,500 people have died in the cholera epidemic in Haiti since late 2010. Hundreds of new cases are still being registered every week.” Through speaking with Dr. Lambert and Senior Researcher Chris Velden, Esty attempted to gain a greater understanding of both the human and environmental impacts of super storm Sandy. To read more about the efforts of Partners in Health in Haiti: http://www.pih.org/pages/haiti Read more about how Chris Velden and other UW Scientists tracked hurricane Sandy’s path: http://www.news.wisc.edu/21215 Listen to the entire show:

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American Indian Heritage Month

11/1/12 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

Native American Heritage Month November is American Indian Heritage Month, and on this, the first day of November, Karma Chavez interviewed Julie Bacon, a very interesting scholar of indigenous peoples of the Americas and activist from Eugene, Oregon, who looks at environmental studies from an anti-racist, feminist, queer indigenous perspective. Originally from the state of Massachusetts, Julie Bacon has lived a nomadic life and traveled to all 48 continental US states. She eventually left the road to attend the Community College of Rhode Island, where she focused on photography and literature. She later earned my B.A. in English from Rhode Island College and my M.A. in English from Oregon State University. At the University of Oregon her primary areas of research are indigenous ecologies, cross-cultural environmental justice coalitions, and the way these subjects are covered and created through traditional and new media public discourses. Currently, she is especially interested in the experiences of “non-status”, “unrecognized”, or partially “recognized” indigenous people such as the Winnemem Wintu, Ohlone and many others who struggle for protection of traditional relationships, resources and identity. Read more about Julie Bacon: http://envs.uoregon.edu/people/doctoralstudents/ Listen to the entire interview:

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‘Islam’ Means Peace: Understanding the Muslim Principle of Nonviolence Today

10/31/12 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

Amitabh On Wednesday October 31st, John Quinlan subbing for Tonya Brito interviewed Amitabh Pal about his recent book, “‘Islam’ Means Peace: Understanding the Muslim Principle of Nonviolence Today.” Amitabh Pal is the editor of The Progressive magazine and co-editor of The Progressive Media Project. As part of his work with The Progressive, he has had the opportunity to speak with many brilliant minds including Jimmy Carter, Mikhail Gorbachev, the Dalai Lama, and Joseph Stiglitz. His work has been used in school and college textbooks and he has appeared on the BBC, C-SPAN and on several radio stations. Pal holds a master’s degree in journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a master’s degree in political science, specializing in international relations and comparative relations, from North Carolina State University. Pal will be featured at this year’s Wisconsin Book Festival (November 7-11). He will be speaking at the series “Being Muslim: Living and Learning,” on Wednesday November 7th in the Promenade Hall at the Overture Center for the Arts.  ”‘Islam’ Means Peace: Understanding the Muslim Principle of Nonviolence Today provides a rebuttal to general misperceptions about the religion by documenting its rich tradition of nonviolence. To that end, the book examines the sources of Islam—the Qur’an, the main religious text of Islam, and the Hadith, the deeds and sayings of the Prophet Muhammad. It contests the prevalent notion that Islam is built on violence in part by illuminating the role of the tolerant, mystical tradition of Sufism in Islam, while at the same time examining the misunderstood place of jihad in the religion. The book is not, however, a historical or theological treatise. Rather, it focuses on the tradition of nonviolence in modern Muslim societies. By spotlighting recent peaceful protest movements in Muslim communities, the book underscores the truly global and multicultural nature of the Islamic tradition of nonviolence. The findings here will be invaluable for Muslims and non-Muslims alike, revealing an alternative tradition both can embrace.” Read more about the book:  http://www.amazon.com/Islam-Means-Peace-Understanding-Nonviolence/dp/0313382905 Learn more about the Wisconsin Book Festival: http://www.wisconsinbookfestival.org/presenting-authors?author_id=1677 Listen to the entire show:

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“Digital Dead End: Fighting for Social Justice in the Information Age”

10/30/12 12:05 PM | A Public Affair

Digital Dead End On Tuesday October 30th, host Cynthia Lin spoke with Virginia Eubanks in the Studio about her new book, “Digital Dead End: Fighting for Social Justice in the Information Age.” Virginia Eubanks was at the Rainbow Bookstore Cooperative on Tuesday, October 30th at 6 pm to promote the paperback release of her book, Digital Dead End: Fighting for Social Justice in the Information Age, which comes out on October 19th. Digital Dead End exposes the realities of the high-tech global economy for women and families in the United States. “The idea that technology will pave the road to prosperity has been promoted through both boom and bust. Today we are told that universal broadband access, high-tech jobs, and cutting-edge science will pull us out of our current economic downturn and move us toward social and economic equality. In Digital Dead End, Virginia Eubanks argues that to believe this is to engage in a kind of magical thinking: a technological utopia will come about simply because we want it to. This vision of the miraculous power of high-tech development is driven by flawed assumptions about race, class, and gender. The realities of the information age are more complicated, particularly for poor and working-class women and families. For them, information technology can be both a tool of liberation and a means of oppression. But despite the inequities of the high-tech global economy, optimism and innovation flourished when Eubanks worked with a community of resourceful women living at her local YWCA. Eubanks describes a new approach to creating a broadly inclusive and empowering “technology for people,” popular technology, which entails shifting the focus from teaching technical skill to nurturing critical technological citizenship, building resources for learning, and fostering social movement.” – MIT Press Read more about “Digital Dead End: Fighting for Social Justice in the Information Age:” http://www.amazon.com/Digital-Dead-End-Fighting-Information/dp/026201498X Listen to the entire program:

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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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