RadioWest Podcasts

Weekdays Live at 9:00 a.m. Mountain / Rebroadcast at 7:00 p.m. Mountain

Conversations and stories that explore the way the world works.

Hosted by Doug Fabrizio, KUER's award-winning program features conversations with authors, politicians, artists and others. KUER 90.1  (9 a.m. and 7 p.m.); Streaming at radiowest.org

Kelsie Moore / KUER

Tuesday, Utah reporter Rod Decker is our guest. Decker just retired after 37 years at Utah CBS affiliate KUTV Channel 2, and he’s got a lot of stories to tell. Decker is known for his unique delivery and for jumping head-long into a story, whether it meant antics to get the viewers’ attention or blunt questions to get a politician’s answer. We’ll discuss his observations on Utah politics and culture, how serving in Vietnam made him skeptical of liberals, and the fact he doesn’t watch TV.

Robert Gehrke

For almost a century, the citizens of Wellsville, Utah, have held an annual spectacle called the “Sham Battle.” It’s an historical reënactment, with white people costumed as Native American Indians attacking Mormon settlers. But the 19th-century battle it purports to depict isn’t the full story, which, of course, is much more complicated. Monday, we’re talking about the Wellsville Sham Battle and the long history in this country of white people dressing up and acting like Indians.

Turf War

Sep 15, 2017

It's no secret that Americans love their lawns. In fact, grass is the largest crop in the United States. But as water becomes more scarce and chemical treatments more toxic, an anti-lawn movement has sprouted. Some are questioning whether we should keep our finely-manicured grass or plant gardens instead. Friday, Doug talks lawns with The New Yorker's Elizabeth Kolbert about her article "Turf War," and Ted Steinberg, author of American Green: The Obsessive Quest for the Perfect Lawn. (Rebroadcast)

How did we end up here? How did America get to this post-truth moment, where the line blurs between reality and illusion? In a new book, radio host and author Kurt Andersen lays out a timeline for how we lost our collective mind. And really, it’s nothing new. America, Andersen says, has always been a country of true believers, wishful dreamers, hucksters and suckers, and we’ve always been uniquely susceptible to fantasy. Andersen joins us Wednesday to explore the 500-year history of a country going haywire.

Israeli choreographer Ohad Naharin is one of the dance world’s most important figures. He can be demanding and intimidating, but professional dancers have pushed beyond their personal limits to express his unique movement language. It’s called “gaga.” Naharin says it’s about listening to the body before telling it what to do. Wednesday, we continue our series on documentary film with a profile of Naharin’s life and work. Director Tomer Heymann joins us to tell the fascinating story of an artistic genius.

We all want to make good health decisions, but every day a new study comes out that seems to change the game. Fat’s bad for you; then it’s good. Count calories. Don’t. Add in all the marketing and news media, and it’s hard to tell the good stuff from the snake oil. James Hamblin is a doctor-turned-journalist, and in his writing for The Atlantic magazine he wades through the noise to find the signal. He joins us Tuesday to help us better understand how to listen to and take care of our bodies.

Public domain

The swastika. Few symbols, few words even, evoke such visceral reactions in the Western world. It stands for genocide and hatred. But it wasn’t always that way. For centuries it symbolized good fortune, success, and well-being. It held deep religious and spiritual meaning for people around the world. Graphic designer Steven Heller has long been fascinated by the swastika, and he joins us Monday to discuss its power and history. Can it ever be seen in its original context again?

A.O. Scott is a long-time film critic for the New York Times, so it may seem strange that he’s now questioning the value of his work ... what the point of criticism actually is. Scott has written a book arguing that critical thinking informs almost every aspect of artistic creation, of civil action, and of our interactions with each other. In that way, he says, we’re all critics. Scott joins us for a discussion about art, pleasure, beauty, truth, and of course criticism. (Rebroadcast)

Thursday, we’re talking about the relationship between the police and the public. Last week, Alex Wubbel’s arrest video went viral. She’s, of course, the nurse that wouldn’t allow Salt Lake Police Detective Jeff Payne to draw blood from an unconscious patient without a warrant. The video showed what many saw as unreasonable escalation on Payne’s part. We’re using this as a jumping off point to explore how power and authority are wielded by American police, and what that means for those they are called to protect. 

iGen

Sep 6, 2017
Anthony Kelly via CC/Flickr, http://bit.ly/2xMGmgU

Five years ago, psychologist Jean Twenge noticed that teenagers were acting differently than the Millenial generation that preceded them. They were more depressed, and more suicidal. They sought less independence from their parents, hung out less with friends, and were less interested in sex. All these behaviors coincide with a pivotal cultural moment: 2012 was the first year a majority of Americans owned smartphones. Twenge joins us Wednesday to explain what she’s learned about today’s super-connected kids.

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