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HELAINE OLEN joins Jonathan Zarov for the 8 O’ Clock Buzz on Friday, January 25, 2013. She is the author of Pound Foolish: Exposing the Dark Side of the Personal Finance Industry, which will be published by Penguin’s Portfolio imprint on January 2, 2013. “THE odds are good that you haven’t yet given up on your New Year’s resolutions and that one of them is to swear off those expensive cappuccinos and save money for your old age. That’s a typical suggestion from finance gurus, who say we can add thousands of dollars annually to our nest eggs by eliminating such wasteful spending. But deciding to take your lunch to work or to cancel your cable television won’t help nearly as much as you’d think. For all the attention we pay to overspending, we struggle with our personal finances not because we spend too much money on small luxuries but because salaries have stagnated at the same time as the costs of nonluxuries have gone up. Even as the average household net worth plunged by almost 40 percent between 2007 and 2010, the cost of everything from health care to housing has risen for decades at rates well beyond that of inflation. Almost half of us are living paycheck to paycheck, barely able to save a penny. In fact, it’s long been known that the majority of bankruptcies result from health issues, job losses and fractured families, something no amount of cutting back can protect against. One of the main reasons we need to borrow money is college loans. Our collective student loan debt is more than $1 trillion, a sum greater than both our credit card debt and our auto loans. The student loan debt problem is basic: college tuitions have increased at more than quadruple the rate of inflation since the 1980s. If you’re a parent, good luck saving for that expense. It’s a primary reason students who borrow money (some two-thirds of all undergraduates) now graduate with an average of $26,600 of debt. That, in turn, will make it harder for the next generation to save. Those who do manage to save still cannot save as much as they need. According to the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, the average baby boomer had $42,000 in his retirement account in 2010. That won’t go far toward meeting an average couple’s future health care costs: $240,000. And while financial planners often advise older people ….read article »
Nico Segal, a member of the up-and-coming hip-hop/pop/blues fusion band thing, spoke with Jonathan Zarov by phone this morning to talk a little bit about the going-ons of his band, Kids These Days. They will be playing at FRNZ fest this Saturday at High Noon Saloon. Watch a music video from the group here, and listen to the interview below.read article »
Amelia Royko Maurer spoke with Tony Castaneda today about the tragic events surrounding Paulie Heenan. Paulie Heenan was shot to death by a Madison police officer on Baldwin Street in early November of 2012. Maurer, a musician, worked closely with Heenan in the recording studio. She described Heenan as having maternal instincts in the studio. Heenan aided musicians through the recording process not just as a studio engineer but also as a caring adult. The two soon developed a strong friendship and later Maurer let Heenan stay at her apartment for some time. He was supposed to be staying at her apartment the night he had been shot. The police report states that on the night of the shooting Heenan was dropped off outside Maurer’s apartment. He accidentally walked into the wrong home. The neighbor was home and tried to help Heenan by walking Heenan towards Maurer’s apartment. Meanwhile, an upstairs neighbor, unsure of the extent of the situation, called the police. According to the report and additionally a reenactment video, in the course of the walk home, Heenan became incompliant, pushing the neighbor. The police arrived to the scene and found the two struggling. An officer rushed towards the two with his gun drawn. The neighbor broke free and Heenan focused his attention on the officer. It is unclear whether Heenan knew they were officers. He was intoxicated, it was nighttime and the officer did not announce himself as police. A second officer approached the scene. When Heenan noticed the second officer he began to lower himself to the ground. He was shot and killed as he did so. In the interview Maurer talks about some critical discrepancies between the officers account and the neighbors account of the event. The tragic event has sparked intense debate on police procedures and has put into question the officers competence. Stephanie Rearick, a community activist, musician, and part owner of Mother Fools Coffee Shop on Williams Street, was also interviewed today. She has been helping out with a community meeting which will attempt to cover a lot of the major topics and questions the Madison community might have about the event. The community meeting takes place Tuesday, January 29th, 2013, from 6:30 to 9:30pm at Bethany Evangelical Free Church. Paulie Heenan’s obituaryread article »
On January 24, 2013, Mark Thomas, a volunteer for the Workers Rights Center, spoke with Tony Castaneda about the organization and why it has something to celebrate. The Workers Rights Center is celebrating their 10th anniversary as an organization. “The Workers Right Center assists workers with problems on the job,” said Thomas, who is staying very active in the organization now that he is recently retired. “Discrimination, OSHA complaints, wage theft.” Those are issues WRC has confronted over the last ten years.read article »
Kerry Schumann, Executive Director of Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters spoke with Jan Miyasaki by phone this morning. She was at the State Capitol an hour before a public hearing about the controversial open pit mining bill. The bill was introduced last week on Wednesday, January 16th. “Basically the bill exempts the iron mining industry from our environmental protection [laws]. Things that protect our drinking water, lakes and streams…that every other person, individual or company in the state has to follow, the iron mining industry doesn’t have to follow that.” Schumann said in today’s interview. “This bill is allowing mining companies to dump toxic waste into sensitive wetlands”, said Schumann. The Wisconsin League of Conversation Voters is a non-profit group that is focused on public health and the environment. “We do that by advocating for strong environmental policies in the state Capitol …by electing pro-conservation champions and by connecting citizens from all over the state to what’s happening in the Capitol everyday.” Schumann said, sounding calm and collected moments before the hearing. Schumann told WORT that there were hundreds of concerned citizens from all over Wisconsin descending on the capitol today to confront the fast-tracked bill. Listen to the interview:read article »
Gerda Lerner, a UW-Madison professor in the History department passed away earlier this month. In honor of her great life Jan Miyasaki plays a small excerpt from an interview with Gerda in 2009. Gerda Lerner set the foundation for women’s history at a time when people in her field were told that Women’s studies, along with African American Studies, were just fads. The academic response to women’s history was a defensive one, claiming that the field already had one history- the history of the human race. She also met an argument against women’s studies as a career path. Many believed that women’s history would never find a place in academia. Yet Gerda Lerner persisted. Gerda described her work as a necessary piece of her activism. If you would like to learn more about Gerda Lerner, her political autobiography, Fireweed, covers her early life in Vienna, Austria, through her time in Madison. Gerda Lerner died on Wednesday, January 2nd, 2013. She was 92 years old. Listen to the entire interview here:read article »
John Gramling, The editor and chief of the Capital City Hues came by the studio today to talk with Jan Miyasaki about the presidential Inauguration. John was in attendance and talks about the experience of being at the event and also reflects on the event as a historic moment. The Capital City Hues is a bi-weekly, multicultural news source. Listen to the interview below.read article »
Milele Chikasa Anana came by the studio today to talk with Aaron Perry about the presidential inauguration yesterday. She had the opportunity of being at the inauguration and has some interesting insight of the ceremony. “There is something powerful about being present at an historic occasion” Milele said about the events of yesterday. Listen to her interview below. Milele Chikasa Anana is the publisher and owner of UMOJA magazine. UMOJA magazine is a monthly publication featuring positive news stories about African Americans.read article »
Celi Dean, Reggie Anderson and Victor Peacock, contributors to the film, Boys Cry, a film about the challenges of bullying, spoke with Aaron Perry over the phone today about the film. See a preview for the film here. Listen to the interview here:read article »
On January 21st, 2013, Dane Varese, The Outreach Director with the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign braved the freezing temperatures (it’s 1 degrees outside) to talk to WORT about Citizens United and what it means for campaigns to come. Citizens United is a 2010 Supreme Court decision that says it would be an infringement on the first amendment to restrict campaign contributions from corporations and unions. What does that mean? It means that money in the possession of corporations and unions can now be donated to a campaign in any amount. Former US senator from Wisconsin, Russ Feingold, commented on Citizens United in a September interview with the Harvard Business Review last year, “The idea of corporate money, money that corporations get when you buy toothpaste or detergent, being used directly in campaigns didn’t exist. And frankly, nobody even seemed to say it was a possibility until this bizarre decision in 2010 in Citizens United. And that is the change.” Now when you buy something at a convenience store you might indirectly be helping to fund a campaign you do not wish to fund. Listen to the interview here:read article »