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Stateside
5:30 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Mike Duggan decides not to appeal in court, drops out of mayor's race

Mike Duggan

An interview with Detroit Free Press editorial writer Nancy Kaffer.

It's official: one of the front-runners in Detroit mayor's race has bowed out, undone by a basic timing error.

Mike Duggan announced that he will not appeal a court ruling that tossed him off the primary ballot because he'd turned in campaign signatures two weeks before what would have been the one year mark of his residency in Detroit. The city charter requires candidates to have lived in the city for a full year.

Detroit Free Press editorial writer Nancy Kaffer joined us today in the studio.

Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
5:28 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Pinpointing the first Michiganders

Bill Lovis is a professor and curator of anthropology at MSU.
http://anthropology.msu.edu/

An interview with Bill Lovis, a professor and curator of anthropology at Michigan State University.

We live in a complex world of technology, of instant communication with just about any spot in the world.

So it is all too easy for us to lose track of our roots, our history.

Who were the first people to call Michigan "home" and what can we learn from those first Michiganders?

Bill Lovis is a professor and curator of anthropology at Michigan State University.

“They came from the South,” Bill said of the first state inhabitants.

Around 12,000 years ago, Michigan was under ice, with several lobes of glaciers covering the state. As the ice receded and melted, people moved up into the state and the Great Lakes began to form.

It was still several thousands of years before Michigan’s terrain began to resemble what it is today. Glaciers left the land very cold, barren, and wet, and it took a long time for forestation to begin. The earliest inhabitants were families who moved across this landscape going from resource to resource.

While these early settlers maybe seem very distant to modern Michiganders, they still touch our lives today.

“Anyone who has a corncob with their braut in the summer is being impacted by Native American society,” said Bill. “The food crops are exceptionally important contributions to the world economy.”

Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
5:24 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

How the Farm Bill impacts all of us

Professor David Schweikhardt
http://www.aec.msu.edu

An interview with David Schweikhardt, a professor in the Michigan State University Department of Agriculture, Food and Resource Economics.

Its official title is the "Senate Agriculture Reform, Food, and Jobs Act," but feel free to call it "The 2013 Farm Bill." It was passed last week by the Senate on the wings of strong bipartisan support by a vote of 66-27.

This nearly $1 trillion bill has been over a year and a half in the making. Not only does it slash $24 billion from agriculture programs, but it makes substantial changes in the way the federal government spends on efforts like the federal food assistance program.

To get a sense of what's in the Senate farm bill and how it matters to each of us, we turned to David Schweikhardt. He's a Professor in the Michigan State University Department of Agriculture, Food and Resource Economics, and he joined us in the studio today.

Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
5:23 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Stabenow addresses concerns surrounding the Farm Bill

Stabenow says Michigan can still benefit from the auto industry
Office of Senator Stabenow

An interview with Michigan Democratic Senator Debbie Stabenow.

The Farm Bill would cut the funding to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, by more than $4 billion over the next 10 years. And the House version of the bill has about five times as many cuts.

Michigan Democratic Senator Debbie Stabenow is the head of the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee, and the champion of the Farm Bill.

The Senator joined us today to discuss some of the concerns surrounding this bill.

Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
5:21 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Farm Bill cuts food stamp funding by over $4 billion

1.7 million people in Michigan receive federal food assistance.
Brandon Shigeta Google images

An interview with Terri Stangl, the executive director of the Center for Civil Justice in Flint.

Even as more Americans than ever before rely on food stamps, the Farm Bill just passed by the Senate would cut the funding to SNAP by more than $4 billion over the next 10 years.

The House version of the bill includes $20 billion in cuts.

Nationwide, more than 47 million people receive federal food assistance and 1.7 million in Michigan. So, we wondered what these possible cuts mean to them.

Terri Stangl is the executive director of the Center for Civil Justice in Flint, and she joined us today to discuss the issue.

Listen to the full interview above.

Politics & Culture
5:04 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Stateside for Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

The U.S. Senate has passed its 2013 Farm Bill, a huge piece of legislation - totaling almost a trillion dollars. We'll found out just what's in the bill, and why, as Michigan Democratic Senator Debbie Stabenow likes to say, "Michigan is written into its every page."

And, we got an update on the Detroit mayoral race after one of the front-runners got kicked off the ballot.

First on the show, we continue our look at the Great Lakes. Yesterday, we talked about the state's "blue" economy, using our water resources to create jobs and boost industry here in Michigan.

So, today, let's turn to some encouraging news about our lakes from the Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition. They've just released an interactive map that pinpoints success stories across the region, efforts to restore the lakes with projects funded by the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.

To get an idea of what these success stories are and the challenges to the lakes that still remain, we turned to Andy Buchsbaum, the director of the National Wildlife Federation's regional Great Lakes Office.

Stateside
5:06 pm
Tue June 18, 2013

To help Michigan's economy, we need to start 'thinking blue'

The Great Lakes from space.
NASA

An interview with John Austin, the director of the Michigan Economic Center.

The term "economy" is used constantly in news stories or opinion pieces about Michigan, its trials and tribulations, its budding recovery.

But John Austin would like to get us all thinking about the "blue economy," the one that is based on the Great Lakes and water-related industry.

John is the director of the Michigan Economic Center, which is affiliated with the Prima Civitas Foundation, and he joined us in the studio today.

Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
5:05 pm
Tue June 18, 2013

New book tracks the Midwest economy from boom to bust

Author Edward McClelland
edwardmcclelland.com

An interview with author Edward McClelland.

If you've grown up in Michigan---or elsewhere in the Midwest, you don't need us to tell you there's been an unbelievable shift in the lifestyle, the economy, the job expectations from, say, your parents' or grandparents' day to what we face in 2013.

Here in the Great Lakes, we've gone from the "Arsenal of Democracy" during World War II to the center of manufacturing, especially of automobiles, to present day, where many of those once-booming factories are empty and rotting away or falling to the wrecker's ball.

Writer Edward McClelland grew up in Lansing, where once upon a time a kid could go from a high school graduation ceremony right into a GM plant, make a great living thanks to contracts won by the UAW, and go right up to retirement. As we all know here in Michigan, those days are gone forever.

Edward McClelland's new book digs into what happened to the industrial midsection of America, including Michigan. It's called "Nothin' But Blue Skies: the Heyday, Hard Times, and Hopes Of America's Industrial Heartland."

Edward McClelland joined us here in the studio.

Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
5:04 pm
Tue June 18, 2013

Why do we still care about finding Jimmy Hoffa?

WEWS-TV YouTube

An interview with Jack Lessenberry.

Here we go again.

The backhoe has been working away in a Michigan field surrounded by news trucks, satellite trucks and the breathless attention of local, national, and even overseas reporters.

It's yet another search for Jimmy Hoffa.

Federal agents revived the hunt for the remains of the Teamster president this week, bringing heavy excavation equipment to a field in Oakland Township, north of Detroit.

This time, the tip comes from an aging reputed Mafia captain.

Mr. Hoffa was supposed to be meeting with a New Jersey teamsters boss and a Detroit Mafia boss when he vanished in the summer of 1975 from a Detroit-area restaurant.

So 38 years later, why does anyone still care about where Jimmy Hoffa's body is buried? 

Michigan Radio’s political analyst Jack Lessenberry joined us today in the studio.

Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
5:02 pm
Tue June 18, 2013

New project helps visually impaired individuals through birdsong

The Kirtland's warbler primarily nests in just a few counties in Michigan. The bird's population has been steadily increasing over the last 30 years in Michigan due to intense management practices.
USFWS Midwest

And interview with Donna Posont, the director of Opportunities Unlimited for the Blind.

Helping blind children and adults connect with nature: that's Donna Posont’s mission.

She's the director of a group called Opportunities Unlimited for the Blind and one of their projects is called Michigan Birdbrains. The project involves teaching blind individuals how to identify birdcalls, and then taking them out on nature walks to find the birds. Not only does this help participants gain confidence, but it also promotes environmental consciousness. 

Donna Posont joined us today to discuss the project further.

Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
5:01 pm
Tue June 18, 2013

Diver discovers a 97-year-old message in a bottle

A message in a bottle.
Flickr

An interview with Dave Leander, a diver and owner of Great Lakes Divecenter.

In 2013, if you want to let the world know you're someplace having a good time, you might whip out your smartphone and tweet it or post a check-in or status update on Facebook.

97 years ago, you might write a message, roll it up, tuck it in a bottle and toss it into the St. Clair River.

That's what a couple of young Detroiters did when they were having fun one summer's day at Tashmoo. That was a very popular amusement part on Harsen's Island on the northern end of Lake St. Clair.

And why do we know about this message in a bottle? Because Dave Leander found the bottle as he was diving in the St. Clair River.

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Politics & Culture
4:59 pm
Tue June 18, 2013

Stateside for Tuesday, June 18th, 2013

It wouldn't be summer without a search for Jimmy Hoffa. We spoke with Michigan Radio's Jack Lessenberry about why we're still fascinated by the Hoffa disappearance all these years later.

And, we talked about the huge economic changes to mid-America with the author of the new book, "Nothin' But Blue Skies: the Heyday, Hard Times, and Hopes of America's Industrial Heartland."

And, Donna Posont, the director of Opportunities Unlimited for the Blind, joined us to discuss her group’s new project, Michigan Birdbrains.

Also, a diver found a bottle containing a message from nearly 100 years ago at the bottom of the St. Clair River. He joined us to talk about his discovery.

First on the show, the term “economy” is used constantly in news stories or opinion pieces about Michigan, its trials and tribulations, its budding recovery.

But John Austin would like to get us all thinking about the "blue economy," the one that is based on the Great Lakes and water-related industry.

John is the director of the Michigan Economic Center, which is affiliated with the Prima Civitas Foundation, and he joined us in the studio today.

Stateside
5:40 pm
Mon June 17, 2013

Michigan's Department of Human Services cracks down on high truancy rates

O.k., o.k., we know this one is empty, but some high school students in the Detroit Public Schools say their classroom are far from empty.
User Motown31 Creative Commons

A report from Jake Neher.

With school out for the summer, state officials are already looking for ways to get more students to show up for classes in the fall. The state Department of Human Services wants to expand pilot programs that put more social workers in schools with high truancy rates.

At the same time, DHS has a new statewide policy that threatens to take away welfare benefits from families with kids who persistently miss school.

But, critics say that still means too few families are getting the support they need to avoid losing their cash assistance.

Michigan Public Radio's Jake Neher gave us the full report.

Stateside
5:39 pm
Mon June 17, 2013

Is it 'brain drain' or is it wanderlust?

Several Michigan college graduates will take their talents outside of the state.

An interview with writer John Schneider.

Let's turn our attentions to college students, or, more specifically, college graduates.

There has been much talk and hand-wringing about the so-called "brain drain," young people earning a degree at a Michigan college or university and then hitting the road. Heading out of Michigan and taking their talents to places like LA, Chicago, Boston, or New York.

Is that "brain drain" the fault of Michigan's depressed-and-slowly-recovering economy? Or might it just be the age-old truth that young people want to spread their wings?

Writer John Schneider mused upon these questions in a column in this week's Bridge Magazine. It's title "Children's departure is part of the cycle of life."

He joins us today to discuss the issue.

Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
5:38 pm
Mon June 17, 2013

Online subscription TV could be the way of the future

Dr. Amanda Lotz

An interview with Amanda Lotz, a professor of communications at the University of Michigan.

It was 2007 when Amanda Lotz of the University of Michigan wrote a book entitled "The Television Will Be Revolutionized." The professor of communication studies predicted that eventually TV will move from the broadcast network format we grew up with to an online subscription format.

Well, if you are one of the many fans of the series "Arrested Development," you are celebrating the resurrection of the wildly popular series which began on Fox and was canceled by Fox, and has now been revived by Netflix in online subscription format.

Amanda Lotz, University of Michigan professor of communications studies, joined us today in the studio.

Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
5:36 pm
Mon June 17, 2013

Grand Rapids and DC musicians team up to release a new album

Phil Stancil and Matt Warn
Facebook

An interview with Phil Stancil and Matt Warn.

Midnight Faces is a music duo consisting of Phil Stancil - he's been playing around Grand Rapids since he was in grade school - and Matt Warn - a product of the Philadelphia music scene who now lives in Washington DC.

The pair has been able to work around that distance between Grand Rapids and D.C. to come up with their debut full-length album and gear up to play dates in the U.S. and possibly Japan.

Phil Stancil and Matt Warn joined us from Grand Rapids.

Their website is midnightfaces.com and their album "Fornication" will be released June 18th. 

Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
5:35 pm
Mon June 17, 2013

Taking a look at Michigan's worst examples of government spending

Crain's Detroit Business writer Bill Shea
Twitter

An interview with Crain's Detroit Business writer Bill Shea.

Wayne County Executive Robert Ficano has hit the pause button on the project to build a new Wayne County jail in downtown Detroit.

The reason?

The still-unfinished 2,000-bed jail could cost up to $91 million over its $220 million budget. So the county is now considering cutting its considerable losses and leasing a former state prison on Mound Road on Detroit's East Side.

Crain's Detroit Business writer Bill Shea got us thinking about this sorry episode in government spending, and the word "boondoggle" came to mind.

His story in Crain's is headlined "Many dollars, little sense: Projects that seemed like good ideas at the time," and he joined us today in the studio.

Listen to the full interview above.

Stateside
5:33 pm
Mon June 17, 2013

Campaign to bring the 2014 X-Games to Detroit

Flickr

An interview with Kevin Krease and Garret Koehler.

Bring the X-Games for 2014 to Detroit.

That's what an impassioned pair of Detroit boosters is saying to ESPN.

They've launched an all-out campaign to get the sports network to choose the Motor City over three other contenders for the summer 2014 X-Games, which are ESPN's extreme sports answer to the Olympics.

Kevin Krease and Garret Koehler are the ones responsible for this bid to win over ESPN.

The two joined us in the studio to talk about their campaign.

Listen to the full interview above.

Politics & Culture
5:30 pm
Mon June 17, 2013

Stateside for Monday, June 17th, 2013

On today's show: Boondoggles.

We took a look back at some of Michigan's sorriest episodes in government spending.

And, we spoke with the members of the duo Midnight Faces, a Grand Rapids band taking a new approach to music from the '80's.

And, Dr. Amanda Lotz joined us in the studio to discuss the future of television now that services such as Netflix have become increasingly popular.

Also, a campaign has started to bring the summer 2014 X-Games to Detroit. We spoke with the guys responsible for starting the campaign about why they think Detroit should be chosen to host the event.

First on the show, with school out for the summer, state officials are already looking for ways to get more students to show up for classes in the fall. The state Department of Human Services wants to expand pilot programs that put more social workers in schools with high truancy rates.

At the same time, DHS has a new statewide policy that threatens to take away welfare benefits from families with kids who persistently miss school.

But, critics say that still means too few families are getting the support they need to avoid losing their cash assistance.

Michigan Public Radio's Jake Neher gave us the full report.

Stateside
5:21 pm
Thu June 13, 2013

New art exhibit explores Michigan's design history

The Cranbrook Art Museum
cranbrookart.edu

Close your eyes for a moment and think about America in 1962. What images come to mind?

Chances are, those images, whether furniture, architecture, or cars, have roots right here in Michigan.

A major exhibition that's begun at the Cranbrook Art Museum in Bloomfield Hills explores Michigan's major role in what America looked like in the mid-20th Century. And much of that design is linked to Cranbrook. It's called "Modern Michigan: Design that Shaped America."

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