Terrence McNally podcast
"I believe we can do better and I want to find out how."
Free Forum Q&A: MINDFULNESS JON KABAT-ZINN WHEREVER YOU GO, THERE YOU ARE; COMING TO OUR SENSES: HEALING OURSELVES AND THE WORLD THROUGH MINDFULNESS TRUDY GOODMAN founder, InsightLA in Santa Monica
May 21, 2015 10:59 PM PDT
Originally aired September 2010
You startle awake to a rude alarm clock. Nothing you'd rather do than sleep a bit more. Coffee gets you going enough to make it out the door. On your morning commute you zone out, oblivious to radio reports of weather disasters or war casualties. At work, juggling your cell phone, landline, and email, you speak to countless faceless people without leaving your desk. You grab lunch over a pile of paperwork. Driving home, you look up to notice what must have been a beautiful sunset. At day's end, you're back where you started.
JON KABAT-ZINN says the answer may be "living life moment by moment as if it really mattered." He believes that by practicing mindfulness, we can literally and metaphorically come to our senses - as individuals and as a society. And there's growing scientific evidence to back him up. TRUDY GOODMAN has done a lot to make that practice accessible here in LA, with the InsightLA center in Santa Monica.DISRUPTIVE: SYNTHETIC BIOLOGY Pamela Silver & George Church
May 17, 2015 10:15 PM PDT
I’m excited to offer the first episode of DISRUPTIVE, my new monthly podcast series produced with Harvard’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering. The mission of the Wyss Institute is to: Transform healthcare, industry, and the environment by emulating the way nature builds, with a focus on technology development and its translation into products and therapies that will have an impact on the world in which we live. Their work is disruptive not only in terms of science but also in how they stretch the usual boundaries of academia.
In this inaugural episode, Wyss core faculty members Pamela Silver and George Church explain how, with today’s technology breakthroughs, modifications to an organism’s genome can be conducted more cheaply, efficiently, and effectively than ever before. Researchers are programming microbes to treat wastewater, generate electricity, manufacture jet fuel, create hemoglobin, and fabricate new drugs. What sounds like science fiction to most of us might be a reality in our lifetimes: the ability to build diagnostic tools that live within our bodies, find ways to eradicate malaria from mosquito lines, or possibly even make genetic improvements in humans that are passed down to future generations. Silver and Church discuss both the high-impact benefits of their work as well as their commitment to the prevention of unintended consequences in this new age of genetic engineering.Free Forum Q&A - MARCIA COYLE Chief DC Correspondent, The National Law Journal Supreme Court Correspondent, PBS News Hour THE ROBERTS COURT: Struggle for the Constitution
May 15, 2015 01:13 PM PDT
Originally aired July 2013
O'Connor had been a much more moderate conservative than Alito has proven to be. The center of the court shifted to the right, which may matter little in decisions with large majorities - more than 50% of cases each term are decided unanimously or by 8-1 or 7-2 votes -- but can be crucial in decisions decide 5-4.
MARCIA COYLE has chosen to focus her book THE ROBERTS COURT: The Struggle for the Constitution on four such 5-4 decisions - Citizens United on campaign finance; District of Columbia v Heller on gun control; on race in school choice; and on the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act.Free Forum Q&A - SYSTEMS THINKING (1) FRITJOF CAPRA, author of several books including The Tao of Physics; The Turning Point & (2) NORA BATESON, director AN ECOLOGY OF MIND doc re her late father, Gregory Bateson
May 07, 2015 01:12 AM PDT
(1) FRITJOF CAPRA - Originally aired April 2009
First. I speak with FRITJOF CAPRA, who wrote a book in 1981 that greatly influenced my view not only of science, medicine, agriculture, energy, and even politics - it influenced my view of reality. That book was THE TURNING POINT, and its message is as profound and revolutionary today. "We live today in a globally interconnected world, in which biological, psychological, social, and environmental phenomena are all interdependent. To describe this world appropriately we need an ecological perspective which the Cartesian world view does not offer. What we need, then, is a new 'paradigm' - a new vision of reality; a fundamental change in our thoughts, perceptions, and values." Capra wrote those words in its preface.
"The major problems in the world are the result of the difference between how nature works and the way people think." Those are the words of the late Gregory Bateson - and I couldn't agree more.Free Forum Q&A - JOHN WARNER One of the founders of Green Chemistry Can we have progress without pollution?
April 29, 2015 10:59 PM PDT
(Originally aired November 2010)
According to Scientific American, "Experts guesstimate that about 50,000 chemicals are used in U.S. consumer products and industrial processes. Why the uncertainty? The 1976 Toxic Substances Control Act does not require chemicals to be registered or proven safe before use. Because the Environmental Protection Agency must show, after the fact, that a substance is dangerous, it has managed to require testing of only about 300 substances that have been in circulation for decades. It has restricted applications of five." The harmful side effects of chemicals have long been tolerated in the US as a price of progress and profits.
J0HN WARNER and Paul Anastas are the founders of green chemistry and co-authors of Green Chemistry: Theory and Practice. In the book, they establish 12 guiding principles for chemists, concepts like preventing waste by incorporating as much of the materials used into the final product, and choosing the least complicated reaction. Warner left a lucrative job at Polaroid to found the nation's first doctoral program in green chemistry. In 2007, to go beyond teaching, he founded Warner Babcock Institute for Green Chemistry, an innovation incubator, in Wilmington, Mass.
Green chemists use all the tools and training of traditional chemistry, but instead of ending up with toxins that must be treated and contained after the fact, they aim to create industrial processes that avert hazard problems altogether. The catch phrase is "benign by design".Free Forum Q7A - (1) BEN SKINNER, A CRIME SO MONSTROUS: Face to Face with Modern Day Slavery & (2) GABOR MATE M.D. IN THE REALM OF HUNGRY GHOSTS: Close Encounters With Addiction
April 23, 2015 04:41 PM PDT
Ben Skinner(Originally aired April 2009)
These interviews pursue a world that just might work. That pursuit, however, demands looking honestly at the darker aspects of human behavior, and this week's interviews deal with slavery and addiction. In both cases, my guests draw on years of personal experience to frame their analyses and their proposed solutions.
April 17, 2015 12:41 PM PDT
When you pick up a newspaper, do you reach first for the sports section? When you sit down in front of a television, do you look first for ESPN or today's hottest game? Does your mood revolve not just around whether the world is better off today but whether the team you root for won or lost?
I love sports. Playing sports, I've probably had more peak moments in which my ego was dissolved and I was able to merge body, mind, and spirit in the pursuit of a goal in full collaboration with others than doing anything else. Sports have always served as a bridge among strangers as well as friends - whether the ability to show up at a basketball court anywhere in the world and join a game within minutes or to strike up a conversation with anyone anywhere regardless of race, class, faith, or nationality. How many fathers and sons have had sports in common when all else seems strained or broken between them?
All of which has a streak of purity about it. But what about professional sports? This week's guest DAVE ZIRIN fills a fairly unique role in our culture. He takes sports seriously enough to be the first sports editor in the 150 year existence of The Nation magazine. He has for years in books, columns, and commentaries examined both the politics of sports as well as the intersection of the two.
I've left my overzealous interest in sports out of the studio for years, but this week -- a couple of weeks after the Super Bowl, not long after Lance Armstrong finally admits to doping, and a few hours before the NBA All Star game - I break that barrier. Dave Zirin and I will talk about specific events and athletes, but we'll also examine the role sports plays in our individual lives and in society.Free Forum Q&A - (1) TEMPLE GRANDIN, one of the most accomplished adults with autism, designer of livestock handling facilities, author, ANIMALS MAKE US HUMAN (2) WALTER ISAACSON, head of the Aspen Institute, author, EINSTEIN: HIS LIFE AND UNIV
April 08, 2015 08:55 PM PDT
TEMPLE GRANDIN - Originally aired January 2010
Two extraordinary minds: Interviews about a couple of individuals who, though slow learners as children, grew up to do amazing things.
Einstein discovered, merely by thinking about it, that the universe was not as it seemed. His contributions changed the way we conceive of reality. A new biography makes the point that his scientific imagination sprang from his rebellious questioning of authority - a testament to the connection between creativity and freedom. In addition to his scientific genius, he was also noted for his social conscience Besides campaigning for a ban on nuclear weaponry, he denounced McCarthyism and pleaded for an end to bigotry and racism.Free Forum Q&A - TIM RYAN Congressman, author, A MINDFUL NATION: How a Simple Practice Can Help Us Reduce Stress, Improve Performance, Recapture American Spirit & WINIFRED GALLAGHER RAPT: Attention and the Focused Life
April 01, 2015 11:08 PM PDT
TIM RYAN - Originally aired August 2012
"My experience is what I agree to attend to." -- William James
This week we focus on mindful attention - hailed by ancient spiritual traditions and modern neuroscience alike as one of the keys to the quality of our lives.
In the first half, I'll be joined by Ohio Congressman TIM RYAN, who offers a radical solution to the stresses and problems that face Americans today -- radical in its original meaning of having to do with roots of things. He has written a book, A MINDFUL NATION: How a Simple Practice Can Help Us Reduce Stress, Improve Performance, and Recapture the American Spirit. Ryan has a daily practice of mindful meditation and now he's advocating that the spread of similar practices could help heal us, not just as individuals but as a nation. And his book is filled with examples of how mindfulness is already being successfully applied in education, healthcare, even the military.
Here's one big tip based on neuroscience: GALLAGHER recommends starting your workday concentrating on your most important task for 90 minutes. At that point, your brain may need a break But don't let yourself get distracted by anything else during that first hour and a half, because it can take the brain 20 minutes to reboot after an interruption.Free Forum Q&A - (1) GEORGE McGOVERN: A Politician of Principle Senator, 1972 Democratic Presidential Candidate (2) ANDREW BACEVICH, THE LIMITS OF POWER: The End of American Exceptionalism
March 26, 2015 09:34 PM PDT
(1) GEORGE McGOVERN
As Congress debates a new budget this week, I read the following headline, "Defense hawks in U.S. Congress move to boost military budgets." It's worth noting that the US spends more on "defense" than the next 9 countries combined. So this week I offer you interviews with two men whose military service contributed to their cautious view of America's armed adventures - longtime Senator and 1972 Democratic presidential candidate, George McGovern and retired Army colonel Andrew Bacevich, who is now the first George McGovern Fellow at Columbia University.
in The Limits of Power, I believe Andrew Basevich pulls things together in ways that I hadn't seen before. Things like our politics of personality, the rise of the imperial presidency, and our national culture of consumption and how all of those link to our military adventures. I say each week that I'm looking for pieces of the puzzle, and I believe today's guest is pulling some of them together in ways that make our problems clearer and change more possible.
Features conversations with people who offer pieces of the puzzle of “a world that just might work” -- provocative approaches to business, environment, health, science, politics, media and culture. Guests have included Ken Burns, Deborah Tannen, Andrew Weil, Jeremy Rifkin, Arianna Huffington, Roger Ebert, Bill Joy, Alvin Toffler, Paul Krugman, Bill Maher, and Norman Lear.
TERRENCE McNALLY, journalist and radio host, is also a consultant, speaker, writer, and coach to public agencies, foundations, non-profits, and responsible corporations. Terrenceâ€™s radio show Free Forum (KPFK 90.7fm, Los Angeles, streaming and podcasting at kpfk.org, in print at AlterNet.org) features conversations with people who offer pieces of the puzzle of â€œa world that just might workâ€ -- provocative approaches to business, environment, health, science, politics, media and culture. Guests have included Ken Burns, Deborah Tannen, Andrew Weil, Jeremy Rifkin, Arianna Huffington, Roger Ebert, Bill Joy, Alvin Toffler, Paul Krugman, Bill Maher, and Norman Lear. McNally speaks on strategic communications and the power of storytelling, as well as on issues of social responsibility and sustainable development. Speaking and training clients include American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, CERES, Friends Of The Earth, Glaxo Smith Kline (Patient Advocates), Greenpeace USA, Intel, The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, MacArthur Foundation, Herman Miller, NASA, NASD Investor Education Foundation, Nemours Foundation, US Climate Action Network, US Department of Agriculture, and Volunteers Of America. His organizational work encourages and focuses communication, creativity, and cooperation; resolves conflicts; clarifies and aligns vision, mission and objectives; and develops plans for effective action. Consulting clients include the Environmental Protection Agency, Union of Concerned Scientists, Natural Resources Defense Council, Redefining Progress, Business for Social Responsibility, Global Green USA, Rhino Records, and Interface Flooring. A graduate of Harvard, where he won its highest academic award, he has also worked as a writer, producer, and director of documentaries ("Buckminster Fuller - World Man, World Game", BBCâ€™s 1992 Earth Summit special "Greenbucksâ€.) He co-wrote and produced Julie Brown's "Goddess In Progress", voted #4 mini-album of 1985 in the Village Voice National Music Critics Poll. Having acted in over a hundred films and television shows, McNally co-wrote and co-produced the musical comedy feature "Earth Girls Are Easy". Called by Time Magazine "the freshest thing to come out of the space program since Tangâ€, it is now being developed as a Broadway musical. Co-author with Hyla Cass MD of Kava: Nature's Answer to Stress, Anxiety, and Insomnia, Terrence is an annual participant at the Conference on World Affairs, a member of the Television Academy of Arts & Sciences, and has served on the boards of Earth Communications Office, Show Coalition, and Education 1st.
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