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Jefferson Exchange | October 20, 2014 | 8:00
10:10 am
Mon October 20, 2014

New Excitement Over Old Caves

Evidence of human habitation from 14 millenia ago. What kind of evidence? Uh, better listen...

In a world that applauds the latest and greatest, it's refreshing to see a big celebration over some decidedly old information: humans living in south central Oregon more than 14,000 years ago. 

They left a few bits of evidence of their existence in the Paisley Caves. 

And those caves have now been added to a list of the country's most important places. 

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Jefferson Exchange | October 20, 2014 | 8:30
10:10 am
Mon October 20, 2014

Ashland Heads For A Bag Ban

California recently passed a statewide ban on plastic bags, but Oregon still handles the issue on a city-by-city basis. 

And Ashland is joining the list of cities banning single-use bags, effective November 6th. 

Stores and shoppers are already practicing for life after the ban. 

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Food Fight
5:33 pm
Fri October 17, 2014

Measure 92: Labeling Genetically Engineered Foods in Oregon

Credit Wikimedia Commons

Last spring, voters in two southern Oregon counties passed measures to ban the cultivation of genetically engineered crops.  Now, Oregon voters statewide are being asked to approve a measure to require genetically engineered foods to be labeled.

As with the similar, unsuccessful ballot measures in Washington and California, lots of out-of-state money is flooding into the campaigns on both sides.

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Jefferson Exchange | October 17, 2014 | 8:00
10:10 am
Fri October 17, 2014

RVTD Asks For Tax Money

Credit Nicholas Blah/Flickr

A federal grant allowed the Rogue Valley Transportation District to add bus service in the evenings and on Saturdays to its schedule. 

But grants expire, and now it's time for another funding source. 

So RVTD is asking voters to approve a five-year property tax levy so the additional service can continue. 

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California Burning series
7:15 am
Fri October 17, 2014

Past Forest Mismanagement Helps Spawn Megafires

The 2013 Rim Fire burned more than 257,000 areas in the Sierra Nevada region.
Credit Inciweb.org

More frequent and dangerous wildfires like last year's Rim Fire may be inevitable for California. How a fire behaves depends largely on how we manage our forests and lands.

But experts argue that poor decision-making led to forests choked with trees and homes built too close to the threat. In the conclusion of our series “California Burning,” Capital Public Radio reporter Amy Quinton looks at what may be needed to make our forests less prone to megafires in the future.

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Noon Friday, News & Information
5:06 pm
Thu October 16, 2014

Four Minor Party Governor Candidates Debate, Oct. 17 at Noon

Credit M.O. Stevens/Wikimedia

The two major political parties tend to hog the spotlight in political campaign season. 

And the contentious race for Oregon Governor has only further focused attention on Democrat John Kitzhaber and Republican Dennis Richardson.

But there are four minor-party candidates for governor as well, and they will get a chance to explain their policy positions in a debate on JPR on Friday, October 17th at Noon.

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Jefferson Exchange | October 16, 2014 | 8:00
10:10 am
Thu October 16, 2014

SOU Puts Time Pressure On Scholarship Campaign

People seem to respond well to deadline pressure, so why not provide some for a fundraising campaign? 

That's the thinking at the Southern Oregon University Foundation.

SOUF is mounting a 100-hour campaign for the SOU scholarship... in this case, SOU stands for "Supporting Opportunities for Undergraduates." 

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Jefferson Exchange | October 16, 2014 | 8:30
10:10 am
Thu October 16, 2014

Kevin Talbert Mounts Indy Campaign For Commissioner

Credit Talbert campaign

Not a single Democrat signed up to run for the two open seats for Jackson County Commissioner in this year's primaries. 

But the Republicans will not run unopposed after all. 

A Democrat got on the ballot by write-in in Commissioner Position 1, and Kevin Talbert is on the ballot for Position 3 as an Independent (with a capital I, the party; Kevin points out that he's still a registered Democrat). 

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Jefferson Exchange | October 16, 2014 | 9:00
10:10 am
Thu October 16, 2014

Oregonians Share More Than They Think

Credit Pearblossomparade.org

Our country is deeply divided politically, and Oregon is just like any other state.  Or is it? 

When you ask people around the state about the values they hold dear, the answers are often similar, despite factors like political party. 

The Oregon Values Project discovered this in its most recent once-a-decade assessment of values among the state's citizens. 

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California Burning series
7:21 am
Thu October 16, 2014

Hiking Through The Illilouette: The Ideal Forest

Illilouette Ridge in Yosemite National Park
Credit Noondueler/SummitPost.org

A Sierra Nevada forest untouched by humans isn’t shady and dense. It actually looks more like a park, with meadows and trees black and scarred from lightning strikes. As part of our series “California Burning,” Capital Public Radio reporter Amy Quinton hiked deep into Yosemite Park to discover more about the composition of forests before humans starting suppressing fire.

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Jefferson Exchange | October 15, 2014 | 8:00
10:10 am
Wed October 15, 2014

"Two Talking Wolves" Sit And Stay A Bit

The "Talking Wolves" of the title are actually humans. Gray wolves are somewhat fuzzier.
Credit Oregon State University

Take a journalist who covers conservation issues and pair him up with a wildlife biologist who specializes in species recovery, and what do you call the duo? 

They chose (or somebody chose for them) "Two Talking Wolves."

Todd Wilkinson is the journalist wolf, Bob Ferris is the biologist. 

They visit the Rogue Valley to talk about their work and their concerns for the planet. 

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California Burning Series
7:26 am
Wed October 15, 2014

Megafires Fuel New Technology

Matt Sgambati demonstrates how a virtual wildfire simulator works.
Credit Andrew Nixon/ CPR


Scientists at the Desert Research Institute in Reno are developing high tech methods to fight, manage and prevent wildfires.

One of these new technologies is called virtual wildfire simulator Vfire. It requires me to don a pair of LCD glasses, a special kind of 3D glasses. I’m in a room with screens all around me, above me, and below me. With the glasses I see Kyle Canyon outside Las Vegas. It’s a box canyon with one entrance and exit. And I’m a virtual firefighter.

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US Senatorial Campaign
11:51 pm
Tue October 14, 2014

Merkley and Wehby Finally Debate

Credit OPB.org

US Senator Jeff Merkley and his Republican challenger Monica Wehby went head-to-head Tuesday on Medford TV station KOBI.  

In their only scheduled debate, both candidates sought to portray the other as extreme and out of touch with everyday Oregonians, while positioning themselves as champions of working people.

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Jefferson Exchange | October 14, 2014 | 8:00
10:10 am
Tue October 14, 2014

Spreading Effectiveness In Approaching Sexual Assault

Credit Wikimedia

Ashland, Oregon is not one of the major cities of the United States. 

But it is a leader in at least one field: the investigation of sexual assault crimes. 

The city's "You Have Options" program is drawing attention and requests for information from law enforcement all over the country. 

Now the country comes to Ashland for the 2014 Southern Oregon Sexual Assault Symposium

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Jefferson Exchange | October 14, 2014 | 9:00
10:10 am
Tue October 14, 2014

Oregon's World-Class Skeptic

Fact: NOT made of green cheese.
Credit Wikimedia

Maybe we don't talk about "flying saucers" anymore, but there are plenty of subjects that produce a spirited debate over physics versus psychology. 

That second field is the home of Dr. Ray Hyman, emeritus professor at the University of Oregon. 

Hyman is a fellow of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry, and he dedicated much of his career to studying why people believe strange things. 

So it comes as no surprise that Ashland's secular-humanist Jefferson Center invited him to speak. 

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California Burning series
7:00 am
Tue October 14, 2014

Northern Californians Prepare For Megafires

USFS research scientist Malcolm North examines a tree killed in the 2013 Rim Fire
Credit Amy Quinton/CPR

California is in the midst of one of the worst droughts in its history and has seen 1,000 more wildfires this year than last. In 2013 the largest wildfire ever in the Sierra Nevada, the Rim Fire, took two months to fully contain and seared more than 250,000 acres. Scientists warn that Californians should prepare for a future of more Rim Fires, fueled by climate change, drought, and forest mismanagement. California Burning is an examination of how Californians are coping with the increased threat, technologies being developed to fight and predict fire, and how we can make forests less prone to megafires in the future.

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Jefferson Exchange | October 13, 2014 | 8:30
10:10 am
Mon October 13, 2014

Remembering The Ongoing Needs Of Haiti

A supply drop in Haiti soon after the 2010 earthquake.
Credit Defense Department/Public Domain

The world learns about major tragedies like the Haiti earthquake of 2010… then the news media move on. 

Attention focuses on the latest disaster. 

Former Medford resident Kurt Hildebrand could not move on. 

His wife, Wilda Mondestin, is from Haiti, and they worked together on a large earthquake response through the Mennonite Central Committee

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"I think There's A Much Better Solution ..."
5:07 pm
Sun October 12, 2014

Rick Steves’ Crusade Against Marijuana Prohibition Visits Ashland

Travel author and media personality Rick Steves
Credit RickSteves.com

Travel guru Rick Steves is widely known for his guidebooks and programs on public radio and TV.

In recent years he’s also taken a high-profile stance against  marijuana prohibition.

Steves was in Ashland late last week in support of Oregon’s Measure 91, which would legalize, tax and regulate marijuana, much as Colorado and Steves’ home state of Washington have. 

Steves told JPR’s Liam Moriarty his extensive travels in Europe have shown him a smarter way of dealing with cannabis than the punitive American War on Drugs.

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Jefferson Exchange | October 10, 2014 | 8:30
10:10 am
Fri October 10, 2014

Delivering Information And Babies In Southern Oregon

Credit Wikimedia

Giving birth is as natural as… well, having a baby. 

Making connections to all the people who can help a mother give birth… that can be trickier. 

Is your family doctor the right person?  Should you find an obstetrician, a midwife, a doula? 

Southern Oregon Birth Connections is all about delivering answers to those questions (and delivering healthy babies, too). 

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Jefferson Exchange | October 9, 2014 | 8:00
10:10 am
Thu October 9, 2014

Andy Kerr In The Wilderness

Credit Oregon Wild

At one time, Andy Kerr might have been the most hated man in Oregon.  And he's fine with that. 

Kerr was instrumental in the fight to protect Northwest forests through the endangered species-listing of the northern spotted owl. 

And he's still plenty active in conservation issues, including paying tribute to the Wilderness Act in this, its 50th anniversary year. 

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