Leaked: The Internet must go!

Hey! Are you on the internet right now? Of course you are! Then you should definitely check out this amazing video about what the internet companies are planning. This move could hurt both consumers and content creators--but of course would be a huge windfall for internet providers.

How weathly are Americans?

The disparity in wealth between the richest one percent of Americans and the bottom 80 percent has grown exponentially over the last thirty years — but the video, posted by user politizane and relying on data from a popular Mother Jones post, focuses on the difference between the ideal disparity that Americans would like to see and the reality.

Tax the Rich

So long! It's been fun.

Dear listeners,

In July 2011 I started a new job teaching Italian at Kansas State University. In some ways this was a return to my roots, as I taught English as a Foreign Language for 17 years in Italy. Now I am teaching English speakers Italian. I've come full circle.

This coming full circle also means the end of an attempt on my part to start a new career in my 50s. Sadly, as much as I tried to bring community radio to Manhattan, I was not successful. So I have decided to dedicate my energy and time to my first love, being an educator.

The archive of my shows will remain active - there's a lot of great content in the shows. So I hope you continue to listen and enjoy them.

Once again thank you for your support and encouragement over the five years the show was on the air. I know many feel that my program needs to be on the air and I agree with you that a diversity of voices is sorely lacking in the local media. But alas, it is not I who will bring that diversity. It will have to be someone else.

Christopher E. Renner

22 July 2011

The Christian Patriarchy Movement

Community bridge opens this week with Kathy Cook, Executive Director of Kansas Families for Education, discussing the upcoming Save Our Schools Rally that will take place at the Capitol building in Topeka on July 30th beginning at 11:00 am. The rally is part of a national effort to put the public back in public education! A national rally will take place in Washington DC at the same time.

Then Community Bridge welcomes Kathryn Joyce, author of "Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement," published by Beacon Press in 2009, for a discussion of the movement, how it saddles women with a life of submission and near-constant pregnancies, and a look at evangelical Christians new campaign to adopt children from around the world in order to spread its ideology.

Addition Links/Resources:

The website for the Save or Schools Rally.

Save Our School rally on Facebook.

Read Kathryn Joyce' s article on the patriarchy movement on Alternet

Read Kathryn Joyce on Quiverfull for Babble.com

Read an article based on the book in Mother Jones

Read Kathryn Joyce' s article on the Quiverfull movement on Newsweek.com

Read Kathryn Joyce' s Salon.com feature on a former Quiverfull adherent and how she left the movement

Read Kathryn Joyce an essay by Kathryn Joyce on Killing the Buddha.

Read an interview with Kathryn Joyce on BuzzFlash

July 21: Global Warming - What every person needs to know

In the second hour, Charles Rice, distinguished K-State Professor of Soil Microbiology and President, Soil Science Society of America, joins us for a discussion of what science knows about global climate change - and it isn’t what the corporate media is saying! Contrary to what the US media and the New York Times in particular has been saying, there is not disagreement in the scientific community on this topic. Global warming is happening and it could drastically alter life as we know it. Rice also gives a report on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) meeting preparing for the 5th Assessment Report which took place this past week in South Korea.

Additional Links/Resources:

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

Help Fight Climate Change - The Nature Conservancy

The Basics of Global Warming - Environmental Defense Fund

Climate Change - the Environmental Protection Agency

What is Global Warming - The National Geographic Society

Global Warming - National Resources Defense Council

The Heat Is On: The Climate Crisis, The Cover-up, The Prescription, by Ross Gelbspan

The Heat is On website.

16 July 2011

What's Causing the Flooding on Wildcat Creek?

Community Bridge opens this week with representatives from the Wildcat Creek Watershed Council to discuss the recent flooring in west Manhattan, the impact development is having on the watershed and what alternatives exist. Joining for the discussion in studio will be Rod Harms, Commissioner Rich Jankovich and Eric Bernard.

Additional Links/Resources:

Wildcat Creek Watershed Council webpage.

Rising Waters: Flooding nearly reaches 500-year storm levels, Rachel Spicer, K-State Collegian, June 8, 2011.

Quick Flooding Prompts Evacuations in Manhattan, John Milburn, Associated Press, printed in the Lawrence Journal World, June 2, 2011.

Manhattan and Riley County plan for future flooding, Lindsey Elloit, KTKA News (Channel 49), June 16, 2001.

Photos of the June 2, 2011, flooding on Wildcat Creek from NBC Action News.

15 July 2011

Exposing the American Legislative Exchange Council

In our second hour, Christopher Renner connects with journalist Beau Hodai for a discussion of the American Legislative Exchange Council. What Is ALEC? They meet in secret. They write our laws. And they want to silence the American people.

On March 15th, University of Wisconsin Professor Bill Cronon posted a study guide on his blog on the history and actions of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). He asked: What is behind the “sudden and impressively well-organized” wave of right-wing legislation targeting workers, students, women, immigrants, and the environment in state legislatures? He found that all roads led to ALEC.

ALEC is a conservative think-tank run by right-wing politicians and corporate and financial interests within the banking industry, the pharmaceutical industry, the big oil and gas industries, and others. They are aligned to many right-wing and conservative interests, including the election-manipulating Koch Industries. ALEC is funded by the Koch brothers to promote an agenda that curbs individual liberties, attacks unions, the social safety net and seeks to insure that corporations pay no taxes, but benefit from all sorts of tax-payer dollars in return. Much of the legislation passed in the during the 2011 Kansas Legislative session was ALEC inspired, including cuts to public education, the "administrative reforms" Governor Brownback has imposed on the state, and Kris Kobach's Voter ID bill.

Additional Links/Resources:

ALEC Exposed, website - a project of the Center for Media and Democracy.

Publicopoly Exposed: How ALEC, the Koch brothers and their corporate allies plan to privatize government, Beau Hodai, In These Times, August 2011.

Corporate Con Game: How the private prison industry helped shape Arizona’s anti-immigrant law, Beau Hodai, In These Times, June 19, 2010.

ALEC Exposed, John Nicholas, The Nation, July 12, 2011. 

ALEC Exposed: The Koch Connection, Lisa Graves, The Nation, July 12, 2011.

ALEC Bills in Wisconsin, Mary Bottari, PR Watch, July 14, 2011.

The Latest Threat to Health Care, Andres Grimes, MS Magazine Blog, July 15, 2011.

ALEC Exposed: State Legislative Bills Drafted by Secretive Corporate-Lawmaker Coalition, Democracy Now!, July 15, 2011.

Billy Bragg website.

ACTION ALERT: Stop ALEC's end run around the law

From Common Cause:
The American Legislative Exchange Council is a secretive front group of hundreds of corporations that are investing millions of dollars a year to write business-friendly legislation at the expense of the middle class.

ALEC has drafted more than 800 model bills for state legislators, including efforts to privatize everything from schools to prisons, to weaken workers' rights, and to make it more difficult for citizens to vote. They even wrote a resolution in support of the horrendous Citizens United decision, which opened the floodgates for corporate money in our elections.

Worse, they are lobbying in state capitals across the country, all while claiming to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that they are a charitable organization. That means that their corporate backers can take a tax deduction by giving money to ALEC to – guess what? – push for more tax breaks and less regulation for their companies!

Under the law, charities are allowed to lobby, up to certain limits, and they must disclose what they spend on that lobbying work. ALEC's annual filings state that they have engaged in zero lobbying activity.

Tell the IRS to launch an immediate investigation into whether ALEC is committing tax fraud. 

08 July 2011

The Flint Hills Discovery Center

During our first hour this week we take up the Flint Hills Discovery Center with its executive director, Bob Workman. The Flint Hills Discovery Center celebrates the importance of the tallgrass prairie, through a presentation of its geology, biology and cultural history. With 7,000 square feet of dynamic permanent exhibits, visitors will learn the importance of this rare eco-system and its rich biological diversity. Visitors will also learn how the first Native peoples lived here in harmony with nature for 13,000 years, and how Euro-Americans adopted grazing as the principle economy of the Flint Hills that has essentially saved it. Workman discusses the architecture of the building, its green features, and what the Center will offer the people of Manhattan and the state of Kansas.

Additional Links/Resources:

Kansas - Flint Hills: tourism resource site.

Flint Hills map and resources - Kansas Geological Survey resource site.

Flint Hills Scenic Byway is the gateway to the tallgrass prairie. It offers travelers an unchanged view of the grasslands of the Great Plains. Explore historic sites, quaint towns, and scenic vistas as you discover where the West truly begins.

Flint Hills Nature Trail is a 117 mile rail-trail in northeast Kansas. It crosses 7 counties along its east-west course.

Protect the Flint Hills is a 501(c) 3 nonprofit organization dedicated to providing information and education about issues that affect the Flint Hills of Kansas, the last expanse of tallgrass prairie on the continent.

National Geographic Photo Gallery: The Splendor of the Grass.

Konza Prairie

Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve

Beattie Linestone

The Future of Water in Kansas

For our second hour, Chris Cardinal, Legislative Director for the Kansas Sierra Club, joins us for a discussion of water policy for the state of Kansas as well as discussing some strategies people who are concerned about the environment can employ given the actual political reality.

Additional Links/Resources:

Kansas water policy must transition from development to management, by Doug Rich, High Plains/Midwest Ag Journal, 2010.

Perspectives on Sustainable Development of Water Resources in Kansas, by Marios Sophocleous, editor, Kansas Geological Survey, 1998.

The Future of Water - Podcast from American Public Media.
Water on earth may be more scarce than you may think. Charles Fishman, author of "The Big Thirst," talks about what people should do to help secure the world's water future.

Vision: The Declaration of the Rights of Mother Earth Is Our Roadmap to a Liveable Future, by Nnimmo Bassey, AlterNet, June 6, 2011.

Gas Drilling Companies Hold Data Needed by Researchers to Assess Risk to Water Quality, by Abrahm Lustgarten, ProPublica,May 17, 2011.

Federal Budget Deal Slashes Key Community Water Funds, by Judith Lewis Mernit, High Country News (via AlterNet), May 12, 2011.

Privatization Has Failed to Deliver Safe, Affordable Water for All -- Here's a Better Idea, by Mthandeki Nhlapo and Peter Waldorff and Susan George, AlterNET, April 28, 2011.

03 July 2011

Discovering Queer American History

Community Bridge celebrates the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots this week with Michael Bronski, Senior Lecturer, Women's and Gender Studies Program at Dartmouth College for a discussion of the his newly released book A Queer History of the United States.

Related Links:

A Queer History of the United States - ordering info from Beacon Press.

How Gays Helped Make and Remake America, Johann Hari, Slate Magazine, May 23, 2011.

The Gay Bar: Can It Survive?, June Thomas, Slate Magazine, July 1, 2011.

Gay Heroes - website dedicated to educating about famous LGBT people throughout history.

People with a History - online guide to lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans history. 

GLBT Historical Society

What is the People's Budget?

For the second hour Stephanie Mott, Executive Director of the Kansas Statewide Transgender Education Project (K-STEP), joins host Christopher Renner for a discussion of transgenderism and to show support for transgender Kansans and their families. Mott kicks off a state-wide tour at 7:30 am Friday morning at the Bluestem Bistro to raise awareness of K-STEP and transgenderism in the state.

Community Bridge closes out with Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting's Peter Hart for a discussion of the People's Budget. This week Sen. Bernie Sanders challenged President Obama - and over 50,000 people co-signed his letter to the President - to stand with the poor of our nation and demand that the Republicans raise taxes on the wealthy. People's Budget was put forward by the co-chairs of the 80-member Congressional Progressive Caucus. Their plan is humane, responsible, and most of all sensible, reflecting the true values of the American people and the real needs of the floundering economy. Unlike Paul Ryan's almost absurdly vicious attack on the poor and working class, the People's Budget would close the deficit by raising taxes on the rich, taming health care costs (including a public option), and ending the military spending on wars and wasteful weapons systems.

Additional Links:

The People's Budget - Congressional Progressive Caucus.

CHART: As Services For Main Street Are Gutted, Richest Pay Lowest Taxes In A Generation

People’s Budget offers sound alternative to Ryan’s draconian plan, Economic Policy Institute, April 13, 2011.

The People's Budget, Jeffery Sachs, the Huffington Post, April 8, 2011.

Progressive Caucus Budget: The Only Honest Plan on the Table, Tim Dickinson, Rolling Stone, April 28, 2011.

The Only Responsible Budget in Town, Michael Tomasky, The Guardian UK, April21, 2011.

Wonkbook: A Congress problem, not a deficit problem, Erza Klein, The Washington Post, June 23, 2001.

The Truth About the Economy
Robert Reich connects the dots on the economy, in less than 2 minutes and 15 seconds. Who knew he could draw!?!