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Fine Particles, Fine Art, Fine Food

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

On today’s show: industrial hygienist Monona Rossol talks about the dangers of dust and how we can protect ourselves! Gabrielle Selz on her new memoir about growing up in the art world with her father, Peter Selz, who was the chief curator of painting and sculpture at MoMA. Bronx-born Salsa icon Willie Colón talks about his career as a singer, trombonist, composer, producer, actor and director, as well as a civil rights, community, political and health activist. Chef and author Rozanne Gold shares her ideas for making the most of summer fruits and vegetables with simple three-ingredient recipes!

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Salsa Icon Willie Colón

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

He's not just a singer, trombonist, composer, producer, actor and director, he's also a civil rights, community, political and health activist.

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Adventures at the Extremes of Human Flight

Monday, August 11, 2014

Humans are pushing the limits in the air—from skydiving to BASE jumping to wingsuit flying.

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Dark Money in Politics: How Much Is There and Where Does It Come From?

Monday, August 11, 2014

So far this year the amount of money spent by outside groups on political advertising for House races has skyrocketed. Ian Vandewalker reveals that the vast majority of this spending has come from dark money sources—which do not reveal some, or all, of their original funders—and that large amounts are coming from single-candidate super PACs, which can offer big donors a way of evading federal contribution limits. Vandewalker wrote a study for the Brennan Center for Justice called “Dark Money Groups Dominate Independent Spending in House Toss-Up Races,” published July 30, 2014.

 

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What Would a Tenement Museum Look Like in 2064?

Monday, August 11, 2014

If a tenement museum were to open in 50 years in New York City, what would it look like and what it would say about the politics of housing for immigrants?

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Dark Money in Politics

Monday, August 11, 2014

On today’s show, we’ll find out how dark money groups, like Super PACs—which don’t have to reveal their funders—have come to dominate independent spending in House political races. And we’ll learn about the latest advances in human flight: from skydiving to BASE jumping to wingsuit flying! Damian Fowler tells the story of a devastating plane crash that pitted one family against a multibillion-dollar insurance company. Annie Polland of the Lower East Side Tenement Museum, talks about the history, future, and politics of housing for the poor.

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After a Fatal Plane Crash, a David-vs-Goliath Legal Battle

Monday, August 11, 2014

After a plane crash killed his wife and badly injured his two daughters, Toby Pearson was thrust into a David-vs-Goliath legal confrontation with a multi-billion dollar insurance company.

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Jo Nesbø, Master of the Crime Thriller

Friday, August 08, 2014

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John Lithgow Wrestles with Rage, Revenge, Raccoons as King Lear

Friday, August 08, 2014

The actor discusses playing the tragic king in The Public Theater’s Shakespeare in the Park production.

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How to Contain and Control the Ebola Outbreak

Friday, August 08, 2014

West Africa is in the midst of the largest Ebola outbreak ever recorded. For this week's Please Explain, an infectious disease expert talks about where it comes from, how it spreads, and how it can be contained.

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Crime, Suffering, Tragedy and John Lithgow

Friday, August 08, 2014

New Yorker staff writer Nicholas Schmidle looks into whether the Chicago police coerced witnesses into implicating a man for a murder he didn’t commit. John Lithgow talks about playing King Lear in the Public Theater’s Shakespeare in the Park production. Jo Nesbø talks about his latest crime thriller, The Son. Plus, this week’s Please Explain is all about the ebola virus and other infectious disease outbreaks, and how they’re treated, contained, and brought under control.

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Did Chicago Police Coerce Witnesses?

Friday, August 08, 2014

New Yorker staff writer Nicholas Schmidle looks into whether the Chicago police coerced witnesses into implicating a man for a murder he didn’t commit.

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A Complicated One-Night Stand

Thursday, August 07, 2014

Julia Stiles and James Wirt discuss their roles in Scott Organ’s play “Phoenix.” They play Sue and Bruce, who meet after an uncharacteristic one-night-stand. Sue never wants to see him again, but Bruce feels compelled to join her in Phoenix. Both are forced to consider a whole new world of possibility, though not one free of difficulty and loss. “Phoenix” is playing at the Cherry Lane Theater through August 23.

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The Government's Guidelines for Labeling You a Terrorist

Thursday, August 07, 2014

Roughly 680,000 people are currently listed in the U.S. government’s Terrorist Screening Database. But according to documents obtained by The Intercept, more than 40 percent of those people have "no recognized terrorist group affiliation.” The documents also reveal that the Obama Administration has overseen an unprecedented expansion of the terrorist screening system. Jeremy Scahill discusses the scope of the watch-list and the “elastic” ways people often end up on it. He's the author of the articles “Watch Commander: Barack Obama’s Secret Terrorist-Tracking System, by the Numbers” and "Blacklisted: The Secret Government Rulebook for Labeling You a Terrorist."

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Depressed Dogs, Anxious Cats

Thursday, August 07, 2014

Like humans, animals can become depressed and anxious and can suffer from OCD and PTSD. Laurel Braitman explores the topic of mental health, therapy, and recovery in the animal kingdom. Her new book Animal Madness: How Anxious Dogs, Compulsive Parrots, and Elephants in Recovery Help Us Understand Ourselves explains how and why animal minds go awry and the ways their disorders resemble our own.

 

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Everyday Interactions Foster Debate, Compromise and Healthier Communities

Thursday, August 07, 2014

Routines that once put doctors and lawyers in touch with grocers and plumbers—casual, everyday interactions that encouraged debate and compromise—have changed dramatically over the last 50 years. Marc J. Dunkelman argues that the disappearance of these community interactions are to blame America's economic troubles and political gridlock. Social media and technology make it seem like we’re more connected than ever, but they’re no substitute for human connections within our neighborhoods and communities. In his book The Vanishing Neighbor: The Transformation of American Community Dunkelman looks at this shift in American life, and shows how incidental interactions have built local communities and fostered healthy debate for centuries.

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Vanishing Neighbors, Diagnosing Pets, and a Reemerging Disease

Thursday, August 07, 2014

On today’s show, Marc Dunkelman argues that we've become less aware of what's happening in the lives of people from different economic backgrounds, education levels, or age groups, and this disconnect lies at the heart of America's economic troubles and political gridlock. Laurel Braitman explores mental health issues, therapy, and recovery in the animal kingdom. Julia Stiles and  James Wirt discuss their roles in the play “Phoenix.” And we’ll find out about an outbreak of bubonic plague in Madagascar.

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The Black Plague Returns

Thursday, August 07, 2014

Madagascar reports the more instances of the black plague—yes that black plague—than any other place on the planet. And although the disease is easily treatable with antibiotics, plague still kills people in Madagascar. A 2013 outbreak sickened 600 people and caused more than 90 deaths. Vice senior editor Benjamin Shapiro traveled to the country to investigate the shocking persistence of this disease and why little is being done about it. His article is  "The Hot Zone."

 

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Michael Johnson was Sexually Reckless, But Is He a Criminal?

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Buzzfeed contributor Steven Thrasher tells the story of how a college wrestler in Missouri named Michael Johnson—whose online name was Tiger Mandingo—was charged for “recklessly infect[ing] another with HIV,” a felony. Thrasher’s article “How College Wrestling Star "Tiger Mandingo" Became An HIV Scapegoat” appeared on Buzzfeed in July 7. 

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Just The Two Of Us: The Creative Power of Pairing Up

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Famous creative duos—like John Lennon and Paul McCartney, Marie and Pierre Curie, Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak—usually have a special chemistry. Joshua Wolf Shenk looks at how creative intimacy unfolds, and examines new scientific research into the foundations of creativity. In his book Powers of Two: Finding the Essence of Innovation in Creative Pairs, he reveals how pairs begin to talk, think, and even look like each other; how the most successful creative partners thrive on conflict; and why some duos flame out while others endure.

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