KQED's live call-in program presents wide-ranging discussions of local, state, national and international issues, as well as in-depth interviews.
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Journalist and author Barbara Ehrenreich was trained as a scientist and is a long-time atheist. But in recent years she's been grappling to understand a mystical experience she had as a teenager. The author of the bestseller "Nickel and Dimed" joins us to talk about her new book, "Living With a Wild God: A Nonbeliever's Search for the Truth about Everything."
One in every five women will be sexually assaulted while in college, but less than 5 percent will report the assault to law enforcement, according to the U.S. Justice Department. Several national efforts are in the works to address the issue: a White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault delivers its recommendations this week, the U.S. Department of Education launched an investigation into claims that UC Berkeley mishandled reports of campus sexual assaults and congresswoman Jackie Speier plans to introduce legislation to strengthen sexual assault laws.
In 1997, UCSF neurologist Stanley Prusiner won the Nobel Prize for his discovery of infectious proteins called "prions" that cause mad cow disease. That revelation has led to an increased understanding of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and ALS. We talk with Stanley Prusiner about the future of brain disease research and his new book, "Madness and Memory: The Discovery of Prions -- A New Biological Principle of Disease."
With 2013 the driest year on record in California and 2014 looking like it might be even drier, farmers are struggling with shrinking yields and possibly up to a half-million acres taken out of production. This is expected to drive up prices for many foods such as fruits, nuts and dairy products. We'll discuss rough times for California's farming community.
In January, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee unveiled what he called his "affordability agenda," including a proposed hike in the minimum wage and construction of more low-cost housing. But he also urged San Franciscans not to take the city's economic recovery for granted. "There is not a city on the planet that would refuse to trade places with our robust economic condition right now," he said. Still, some critics say the mayor has been too slow to address the city's housing shortage and rapidly rising cost of living, and that he is too cozy with the tech industry. Mayor Lee joins us to discuss the economy, the future of MUNI, the city college accreditation crisis, State Senator Leland Yee's corruption case and other issues.
Robert Gates's career gives him a unique vantage point. He's the only U.S. defense secretary in history to serve under consecutive presidents from opposing parties. His memoir "Duty" created a stir when it was released in January for its perceived criticism of President Obama's handling of the war in Afghanistan. We'll talk to Gates about the book, as well as the Ukraine crisis and other pressing foreign policy challenges.
Officials from Ukraine, the United States, the European Union and Russia have taken the first steps toward a pact aimed at de-escalating tensions between Ukraine and pro-Russian separatists. But separatist leaders have given no indication they will sign the deal, and continue to call for the removal of the government in Kiev. We look at the latest news from the region, and examine what this means for the rest of the world.