Here and Now on KBIA 2

Weekdays Noon to 2pm

Here! Now! Imperative: not to be avoided: necessary. In a typical week, the show will cover not only all the big news stories, but also the stories behind the stories, or some of the less crucial but equally intriguing things happening in the world.

Click here to enter the Here and Now website.

Despite intense lobbying by human rights groups, Amnesty International has voted to support the decriminalization of the sex trade.

The group says the policy is based on the idea that sex between consenting adults should not be subject to state interference. They believe it is the best way to protect sex workers and will help make their lives safer.

We sit down with Jim McGuinn, host of the show “Teenage Kicks” on Minnesota Public Radio’s music station The Current. He brings us some sounds from the 1970s, 80s and 90s.

Music From The Segment

The Undertones, “Teenage Kicks”

[Youtube]

Gas prices are low, but are they low enough?

Oil is down to a six-year low of $43 per barrel, so why aren’t gas prices dirt cheap? And how will these prices translate to the airline industry?

Marilyn Geewax, NPR’s senior business editor, speaks with Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson about where gas prices are going.

The War Comes Home For Baby Boomer Veterans

Aug 11, 2015

The Vietnam War ended decades ago. Veterans from that conflict are now in their 60’s, and starting to retire. And with retirement, for some, there’s a troubling realization that they have deep wounds from the war that have never healed because they’ve never been dealt with.

Phoenix, Arizona, has been called the world’s least sustainable city. But the city is on a mission to change that in at least one area: garbage.

City leaders have set a goal of reducing the amount of trash sent to city landfills by 40 percent over the next five years. And they also hope to become leaders in waste innovation.

Phoenix city manager Ed Zuercher talks with Here & Now’s Robin Young about changing the ways of waste.

China devalued its currency on Tuesday, surprising global investors and worrying economists. The move was the most significant devaluation to the yuan since 1994 and the Chinese currency proceeded to drop nearly two percent in trading against the U.S. dollar.

Gregory Maguire is known for re-imagining classic tales, for example in his “Wicked Years” books he put his spin on L. Frank Baum’s “The Wizard of Oz.” For “Egg and Spoon” he explores pre-revolutionary Russia, incorporating magical figures from tales he read in his childhood.

What's Showing In Iowa And New Hampshire?

Aug 10, 2015

With six months left until the Iowa caucuses, urgency is starting to creep up on candidates for both parties to gain ground. In today’s political world, that means a flurry of political ads.

Here & Now’s media analyst John Carroll talks with Robin Young about the ads the candidates have released for the early primary states, and what they show about their respective strategies going forward.

[Youtube]

Utilities and residents along Colorado’s Animas River and New Mexico’s San Juan River are scrambling to find alternative water sources following an accidental mine spill over the weekend.

A cleanup crew supervised by the Environmental Protection Agency last week inadvertently leaked 3 million gallons of orange-colored toxic wastewater into the Animas, which runs into the San Juan. The crew was trying to treat water inside an abandoned gold mine when the accident occurred.

'The Blob' Takes Over The West Coast

Aug 7, 2015

Since 2013, a patch of unusually warm water known as “the blob” has been spreading across the Pacific Ocean right off the U.S. coast, causing problems both at sea and on land.

The increased temperatures in typically temperate climates like Puget Sound and the Gulf of Alaska have made it hard for cold-water species to thrive, leading to an increase in toxic algal blooms – unwelcome changes that have made Washington shut down multiple fishing industries.

About 120 people a day are dying from unintentional drug overdoses, according the Federal Drug Enforcement Administration.

An increase in prescriptions for painkillers, like Oxycontin, is one reason. Another is that when opioids aren’t available, people often turn to heroin because it is cheaper, stronger any easier to obtain these days.

The problem appears worse in some communities, but it’s not often clear why.

U.S. Employers Add 215,000 Jobs In July

Aug 7, 2015

Today’s jobs report from the Department of Labor showed the American economy added 215,000 jobs in July. The unemployment rate held steady at 5.3 percent. Here & Now’s Peter O’Dowd looks at the details of the report with Mike Regan of Bloomberg News.

Actress and businesswoman Jessica Alba is defending the sunscreen made by her company, after months of complaints from customers on social media, who said it did not protect them from sunburns.

In a letter on The Honest Company’s website, Alba and her co-founder write that they use the sunscreen on their own children, and that it has gone through extensive testing. They also write that they will “do what it takes to make it right,” inviting people to call their customer service number.

The top 10 Republican presidential candidates will meet on one stage tonight for the first debate of the primary season. But those are not all of the candidates – just the ones who ranked highest in political polls.

But in the age of mobile phones and no more robocalls on landlines, is polling as consistent as it once was? Andrew Smith, director of the University of New Hampshire’s Survey Center, speaks with Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson about the changing political polling.

On August 6, 1965, President Lyndon Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act, which made restrictions on access to the ballot box illegal. Those restrictions, such as literacy tests and poll taxes, had been in place since the end of the Civil War.

The new law led to more African-Americans voting and being elected, but some say its legacy is jeopardized today.

A new Arizona law went into effect in July that allows people to get blood tests at the lab without a doctor’s orders.

Critics say it will lead to excessive testing, and leave the customers confused trying to interpret results. But labs that offer a new menu of tests say it puts healthcare firmly in the hands of the individual.

When J. Ryan Stradal was growing up in Hastings, Minnesota, the cuisine in his house wasn’t very challenging. But when he was in high school, he began to explore the ethnic restaurants of Minneapolis and Saint Paul.

Now, Stradal brings his memories of the kitchens he grew up in, as well as his own culinary adventures, to his debut novel, “Kitchens of the Great Midwest.”

SEC To Approve Dodd-Frank Pay Gap Rules

Aug 5, 2015

It will soon be easier for millions of Americans to compare their paycheck to the CEO’s.

The Securities and Exchange Commission is slated to finalize a rule to make companies disclose the pay gap between CEOs and regular employees. It’s part of the Dodd-Frank financial reform law and it comes after years of debate on the topic.

Ali Velshi of Al Jazeera America joins Here & Now‘s Peter O’Dowd to discuss the rule, how it will work and why it took so long to finalize.

Would Natural Gas Act As A 'Bridge Fuel?'

Aug 4, 2015

President Obama’s Clean Power Plan, announced yesterday, requires the country to cut power-plant carbon dioxide emissions by about a third by 2030. The plan also requires the country to get more than a quarter of its electricity from renewable resources like solar and wind by 2030, up from 13 percent last year.

Four sitting governors are among the candidates currently running for president.

While they’re out on the campaign trail stumping and fundraising, they also have their own states to run.

Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson talks with former Virginia Gov. Douglas Wilder about the challenges of doing both things well. Gov. Wilder briefly sought the Democratic presidential nomination in 1991, while he was governor.

American Airlines is the latest to ban the transportation of big-game trophies on its flights. The industry is responding to outrage over the killing of Cecil, the popular African lion killed by an American hunter, in Zimbabwe. Delta Airlines announced its ban Monday, while Air France, KLM and Quantas issued bans last week.

Jason Bellini, from The Wall Street Journal, joins Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson to discuss.

A new automotive survey from the research organization IHS says that the the average car on the road is 11.5 years old. But automotive sales numbers for July are higher than estimates and some car makers are beating their sales from last year.

Is the auto industry contradicting itself?

Here & Now’s Peter O’Dowd speaks with Paul Eisenstein, publisher of The Detroit Bureau, an online automotive publication to talk about the aging U.S. automobile.

LOWER LAKE, Calif — Firefighters aided by lower temperatures and higher humidity have made progress corralling a wildfire threatening thousands of homes in Northern California.

California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection Capt. Don Camp says containment of the fire in the Lower Lake area north of San Francisco was at 12 percent Monday morning after being stuck at 5 percent for days.

The fire — the largest in California — grew extensively over the weekend and measured 93 square miles by early Monday.

This fall, some high school seniors will have it easier in the college application process. George Washington University, one of the nation’s top private schools, is the latest school to make the SATs and ACTs optional for admission.

NPR’s Claudio Sanchez talks with Here & Now‘s Robin Young and explains that the school hopes the move will help recruit and enroll more high-achieving students who don’t do well on tests.

When wildfires break out and hundreds of responding firefighters need to be equipped and fed, their bosses order from a special warehouse.

There are 16 regional wildfire supply storehouses operated by the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management and partner states.

Tom Banse of Here & Now contributor Northwest News Network got a tour of what you might call the Amazon.com for wildfire fighting in Boise, Idaho.

Microsoft Quietly Launches Windows 10

Jul 29, 2015

Microsoft is launching Windows 10 today without the usual midnight sales parties and marketing campaigns.

The company is hoping that users are happier with Windows 10, after Windows 8 was widely criticized when it was released in 2012. Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson takes a look at what Windows 10 means for Microsoft with CNN’s Maggie Lake.

Garden-Inspired Cooking With Kathy Gunst

Jul 29, 2015

Here & Now resident chef Kathy Gunst gets much of the fresh produce she enjoys in the summer from her garden in southern Maine.

As she told host Jeremy Hobson, keeping a garden “is hours and hours” of work that she and her husband put in year-round. But “for me to come out in the morning and pick raspberries off my vine and pull together a lettuce for my lunch and know exactly what was in the soil, that it’s completely organic, that no one has sprayed it – the food just tastes so good.”

Australia’s decision to kill 2 million feral cats is the latest event in a battle among cat lovers, bird lovers and even celebrities over cats and their impact on wildlife. Feral cats roam in solitude, but issues surrounding the treatment of homeless cats is tangled in both pet owner and non-pet owners’ lives.

Since 1875, the town of Superior, Arizona, has relied on copper mining to drive its economy. That reliance has come at a cost though, as many of Superior’s residents have lived through several cycles of mines opening and closing. But town officials are now hoping to put an end to that cycle. Carrie Jung from Here & Now contributor KJZZ reports.

The Benefits Of State-Of-The-Art Airports

Jul 28, 2015

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and Vice President Joe Biden unveiled a $4 billion plan yesterday to completely rebuild LaGuardia Airport.

Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson speaks with Mitchell Moss about the role airports play in a region’s economy, and why it matters to have a state-of-the-art airport in a city. Moss is director of the Rudin Center for Transportation and Policy Management at NYU.

Pages