Here and Now

  • Hosted by Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson

Here & Now offers a distinctive mix of hard news and rich conversation featuring interesting players from across the spectrum of arts and culture, business, technology, science and politics.

LOWER LAKE, Calif — Firefighters aided by lower temperatures and higher humidity have made progress corralling a wildfire threatening thousands of homes in Northern California.

California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection Capt. Don Camp says containment of the fire in the Lower Lake area north of San Francisco was at 12 percent Monday morning after being stuck at 5 percent for days.

The fire — the largest in California — grew extensively over the weekend and measured 93 square miles by early Monday.

This fall, some high school seniors will have it easier in the college application process. George Washington University, one of the nation’s top private schools, is the latest school to make the SATs and ACTs optional for admission.

NPR’s Claudio Sanchez talks with Here & Now‘s Robin Young and explains that the school hopes the move will help recruit and enroll more high-achieving students who don’t do well on tests.

A new automotive survey from the research organization IHS says that the the average car on the road is 11.5 years old. But automotive sales numbers for July are higher than estimates and some car makers are beating their sales from last year.

Is the auto industry contradicting itself?

Here & Now’s Peter O’Dowd speaks with Paul Eisenstein, publisher of The Detroit Bureau, an online automotive publication to talk about the aging U.S. automobile.

When wildfires break out and hundreds of responding firefighters need to be equipped and fed, their bosses order from a special warehouse.

There are 16 regional wildfire supply storehouses operated by the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management and partner states.

Tom Banse of Here & Now contributor Northwest News Network got a tour of what you might call the Amazon.com for wildfire fighting in Boise, Idaho.

Garden-Inspired Cooking With Kathy Gunst

Jul 29, 2015

Here & Now resident chef Kathy Gunst gets much of the fresh produce she enjoys in the summer from her garden in southern Maine.

As she told host Jeremy Hobson, keeping a garden “is hours and hours” of work that she and her husband put in year-round. But “for me to come out in the morning and pick raspberries off my vine and pull together a lettuce for my lunch and know exactly what was in the soil, that it’s completely organic, that no one has sprayed it – the food just tastes so good.”

Microsoft Quietly Launches Windows 10

Jul 29, 2015

Microsoft is launching Windows 10 today without the usual midnight sales parties and marketing campaigns.

The company is hoping that users are happier with Windows 10, after Windows 8 was widely criticized when it was released in 2012. Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson takes a look at what Windows 10 means for Microsoft with CNN’s Maggie Lake.

Australia’s decision to kill 2 million feral cats is the latest event in a battle among cat lovers, bird lovers and even celebrities over cats and their impact on wildlife. Feral cats roam in solitude, but issues surrounding the treatment of homeless cats is tangled in both pet owner and non-pet owners’ lives.

Since 1875, the town of Superior, Arizona, has relied on copper mining to drive its economy. That reliance has come at a cost though, as many of Superior’s residents have lived through several cycles of mines opening and closing. But town officials are now hoping to put an end to that cycle. Carrie Jung from Here & Now contributor KJZZ reports.

The Benefits Of State-Of-The-Art Airports

Jul 28, 2015

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and Vice President Joe Biden unveiled a $4 billion plan yesterday to completely rebuild LaGuardia Airport.

Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson speaks with Mitchell Moss about the role airports play in a region’s economy, and why it matters to have a state-of-the-art airport in a city. Moss is director of the Rudin Center for Transportation and Policy Management at NYU.

China Stocks See Biggest Drop Since 2007

Jul 27, 2015

Stocks in China slid dramatically today and yesterday, with the Shanghai Composite Index ending down 8.5 percent. The drops come after huge gains in the markets earlier this summer, and amid fears that the government is going to stop taking certain actions to prop up the market. Jill Schlesinger of CBS News joins Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson with details.

Historical movements, wars and disasters around the globe have created signature sounds in music. Think freedom songs like “We Shall Overcome” or even Prince’s “Baltimore.” California is in its fourth year of drought and songs about a drying state are now emerging. From Here & Now’s contributing station Valley Public Radio, Ezra David Romero reports.

According to psychiatry professor and author John Ratey, something as simple as a walk can improve both physical and mental well being. Ratey is co-author of the book “Go Wild: Free Your Mind from the Afflictions of Civilization.” Last year, he and Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson went for a walk near the Charles River in Boston. Today we revisit that conversation.

As the United States and Cuba slowly resume diplomatic relations, one of the biggest question marks has been what effect these changes will have on the people of Cuba.

The reopening of the barriers between the two countries offers new opportunities for improvement in the quality of life for Cubans, promising major growth in Cuban tourism and more freedom for the transfer of remittances – money sent from the U.S. that goes directly to people in Cuba.

U.S. Takes Home Gold... In Math

Jul 24, 2015

On July 5, Americans around the country rejoiced when the women’s World Cup team brought home the gold medal, beating out 23 teams for soccer’s greatest prize.

At the same time, in Chiang Mai, Thailand, another American team was competing for victory. But instead of taking on 23 teams, this team took on participants from 103 other countries. And they won.

Chefs working with the Food Innovation Center at Oregon State University have been experimenting with a patented, fast-growing new form of a seaweed called dulse, which has for centuries been harvested in the wild and used in northern European cuisine.

Researchers say their dulse, when fried, tastes like bacon. Vegans everywhere are rejoicing. Michael Morrisey, the center’s director, joins Here & Now host Jeremy Hobson to talk about the results.

Tulsa Braces For 100-Degree Weekend

Jul 23, 2015

NOAA’s National Climate Data Center reported this week that temperatures across the globe for the first six months of 2015 are the warmest on record.

While that is great for beachgoers, it also endangers millions of lives, as heat is the No. 1 weather-related killer in the United States.

One city that’s feeling the heat is Tulsa, Oklahoma, which has 100-degree temperatures forecast for the weekend.

One of the nation’s most recognizable coffee chains, Dunkin’ Donuts, is expanding in the United States and abroad.

Dunkin’ Brands announced today that it opened 80 new Dunkin’ Donuts stores in the U.S. and 154 worldwide in the second quarter. The company is making a push into the coveted West Coast market, where the competition is brutal.

A wildfire sweeping through Glacier National Park in Montana is prompting more evacuations. Officials are clearing the small community of St. Mary, at the park’s eastern entrance. The fire has burned through more than six square miles.

Another wildfire has charred six square miles in Northern California, prompting evacuations about 30 miles north of Napa. And about a thousand firefighters are continuing to battle a blaze 10 miles east of Walla Walla, Washington. It’s only about 5 percent contained.

Aurora Shooting Trial Enters Penalty Phase

Jul 22, 2015

The trial of James Holmes, found guilty of the movie theater shooting rampage in Aurora, Colorado, that killed 12 people and injured 70 others, enters the penalty phase today.

Jurors will hear testimony before deciding whether Holmes will be sentenced to death or life in prison. Megan Verlee of Colorado Public Radio joins Here & Now‘s Meghna Chakrabarti with the latest.

This weekend’s Newport Folk Festival marks the 50th anniversary of what many believe is a defining moment for American music: when Bob Dylan put down his acoustic guitar and plugged in an electric one.

The moment has been written and talked about extensively, and people are still arguing today about whether it permanently changed the definition of American folk music.

Volcker Bank Rule Takes Effect

Jul 22, 2015

Starting today, Wall Street banks have to comply with the Volcker Rule, considered one of the biggest new restriction they’ve faced in decades.

The rule bans taxpayer-insured banks from making bets on their own money, and banks fought it for years. But many have since fallen in line.

Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson takes a look at what the move will mean with Maggie Lake of CNN.

Guest

Last week, a drone delivered 24 packages of medicine and supplies to a health fair in rural Virginia. The delivery marks the first FAA-approved delivery by drone and more are in the planning stages.

This is sure to interest a Silicon Valley startup, which has teamed up with the Swiss Post and Swiss WorldCargo. Matternet and the Swiss companies are joining in testing the commercial use of logistics drones.

Old Photo Stirs Memories Of Bygone Vermont

Jul 21, 2015

Sometimes the memory of a person resurfaces in an unusual way. Earlier this year, Here & Now contributor Vermont Public Radio aired an interview with the National Geographic photographer Nathan Benn, whose photographs of Vermont in the 1970s were on display at a local exhibit.

Jet logo via Facebook

The new online shopping service Jet.com launches today, and the company is trying to take on the likes of Amazon and Walmart.

A new poll from the Spanish-language broadcaster Univision has some bad news for Republicans. Democrats once again hold a big lead among Latino voters going into the next presidential campaign.

But there are a few bright spots for Republicans. Former Florida governor Jeb Bush has made big strides in closing the gap in a hypothetical matchup against Hillary Clinton, and both Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio have Latino parents.

Snapshots Make Way To Fine Art Museum

Jul 20, 2015

Some of us have dusty boxes filled with fading family snap shots. Sift through and there’s a chance you’ll find pictures of strangers. Mystery photos can be amusing and perplexing.

Collector Peter Cohen has rescued 50,000 “found” vintage photographs, and now about 300 are on display at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. Andrea Shea of Here & Now contributor WBUR reports on Cohen’s quest to secure the snapshot’s place in history.

Greek bank branches reopened today after being closed for three weeks in an effort to prevent a collapse of its banking system. But there are still many banking restrictions in place.

Meanwhile, some of the austerity measures enacted as a condition for a new bailout are taking effect this week. For instance, today Greeks are being hit by increases in the value-added tax on goods and services.

A Redhead Roundtable

Jul 17, 2015

Yesterday, Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson spoke with Jacky Colliss Harvey about her new book “Red: A History of the Redhead.” In it, she charts the genetic, historical and cultural journey of redheads across the globe – the good and, yes, the bad.

There is now a video of the arrest of Sandra Bland, the 28-year-old black woman who was found dead in her jail cell in Waller County, Texas, on Monday. She was initially pulled over last Friday for not using her signal when she changed lanes, and arrested for “assault on a public servant.”

In the video of her arrest, recorded by a bystander, you can see police on top of Bland. She is down on the ground, and she can be heard asking officers why they are being so rough with her.

D’Army Bailey, a civil rights activist, author and judge will be buried tomorrow in Memphis. He died Sunday at age 73.

Bailey is probably best remembered as the founder of the National Civil Rights Museum at the site of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee, where Dr. Martin Luther King Junior was assassinated in 1968.

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