Geoffrey Riley

News Director | Jefferson Exchange Host

Geoffrey Riley began practicing journalism in the State of Jefferson nearly three decades ago, as a reporter and anchor for a Medford TV station. It was about the same time that he began listening to Jefferson Public Radio, and thought he might one day work there. He was right.

Geoff came to JPR as a backup host on The Jefferson Exchange in late 2000, and he assumed the full-time host job at the beginning of 2010. The two hours of the Exchange allow him to join our listeners in exploring issues both large and small, local and global. In addition to hosting The Exchange, Geoff oversees JPR’s news department as its News Director.

Geoff is a New York native, with stints in broadcast news in Missouri, Alabama, and Wisconsin before his arrival in Oregon. He is a graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism.

aboldpeace.com

The level of American military spending comes up a lot, because it IS a lot; more than any other country.  Let's turn our focus to military spending in another country: Costa Rica. 

There's very little, because Costa Rica disbanded its permanent military decades ago, in favor of spending the money on improving the quality of life. 

The situation is summed up in the documentary film "A Bold Peace," produced by Matthew Eddy and Michael Dreiling. 

It's not just the Internet that encourages anonymous commenting... even The Exchange only requires first names from people who call and email. 

So this VENTSday, let's talk about the effects of anonymous venting. 

Our other topic: what circumstances (example: felony conviction) should cost a person her/his right to vote?  

Listeners take stage on our weekly VENTSday segment, a chance to vent on a couple of topics in the news--by phone, by email, or through our online survey. We provide the topics, you provide the opinions. 

No expertise necessary; just opinions and the ability to express them in a radio-friendly way. We post our weekly survey on one or both of the topics in advance.

Basic Books

Guns have certainly been a part of American society since the very beginning; just the existence of the Second Amendment is proof of that. 

But there's a debate to be had about the relative importance of guns over the last two centuries. 

Historian Pamela Haag argues that guns became more important to people through effective marketing campaigns. 

She focuses on the Winchester Repeating Arms Company, maker of many famous guns, in her book The Gunning of America

sbjforgovernor.org

It's quite the flock running for Oregon governor this year. 

Kate Brown is the incumbent by appointment, which almost makes it an open seat.  15 candidates in all signed up in the Democratic, Republican, and Independent Party of Oregon primaries. 

Stephen Johnson, home care worker and former real estate agent, runs against Brown in the Democratic primary. 

skylakes.org

A big city hospital and a small town version will team up to train doctors in Oregon. 

Oregon Health & Sciences University in Portland and Sky Lakes Medical Center in Klamath falls plan a joint venture on the Sky Lakes Campus. 

It will strengthen health care in the Klamath Basin and skills training for physicians planning to go into family practice. 

Zoey/http://www.livetiny365.com/

Did McMansions cause a backlash, or what?  Just a few years after small families bought extra-large houses to fit people and stuff, the real estate market crashed. 

That's not the only reason tiny houses appear to be catching on; they've been out there for a while now. 

And there is something charming about the idea of a small and simple and even portable life. 

Andrew Duncan designs and builds tiny houses at Southern Oregon Tiny Homes and Andrew Morrison does the same at Tiny House Build

Keller & Keller/adamdanforth.com

Adam Danforth's books are not for everyone; vegetarians in particular will likely take a pass. 

But he knows animals and how to cut them into meat. 

He studied slaughtering and butchering at college, and is now a James Beard Award winner for his books on the subject

budpierce.com

The last time Oregon elected a Republican governor was in 1982. 

Bud Pierce is one of seven Republicans determined to break that streak. 

Pierce is a physician, an oncologist practicing in the Salem area, and he is sharply critical of incumbent governor Kate Brown. 

The Siskiyou

The tribulations of the journalism business are well documented, and affect outlets big and small. 

The student newspaper The Siskiyou at Southern Oregon University already gave up its print version several years ago. 

Now its staffers and faculty guide are trying to save it from extinction as an online-only publication. 

SOU is pulling its official support, but leaving the door open for a student-funded Siskiyou; a gofundme campaign has been set up for stopgap support. 

revbilly.com

"Reverend Billy" in some people's minds should be followed by "Graham." 

But that's not the Reverend Billy we plan to talk to.  THIS Reverend Billy is known to public radio audiences for his appearances on West Coast Live and other shows. 

He is the leader of the Church of Stop Shopping, a collection of singers and performers who oppose consumerism, militarism, and other isms. 

Penguin Random House

Emily Wing Smith nearly died in a car accident when she was twelve years old. 

And that turned out to be a good thing; because her post-accident health care discovered a brain tumor, a big one.  The presence of the tumor explained a lot of anomalies in her health and behavior before the accident. 

The story of the tumor and its effects and treatment is told in Smith's memoir All Better Now

makeoregongreat.com

Maybe you thought Oregon's race for governor was a quiet affair, given the presence of an incumbent, and the fact that it's just a two-year term up for a vote. 

But 15 people in three parties signed up to run, including Democrat Kate Brown, who gained the office through the resignation of her predecessor. 

We reached out to all the candidates entered in the May 17th primary. 

Cliff Thomason is one of two candidates running for the nomination of the Independent Party of Oregon. 

resiliencepermaculture.com

Most of us look at the nearby landscape and see trees and flowers and rocks. 

Tao Orion looks with eyes that see sustainability... or the lack of it. 

Orion, author of a book on invasive plants and permaculture teacher, offers a permaculture workshop as part of Earth Day/Arbor Day festivities at Southern Oregon University. 

University of California Press

Just as there are different approaches to worship by different sects of Jews, there are also different approaches to cooking and eating. 

When Jews scattered after the breakup of the historic Israel, they traveled to many lands, picking up wide varieties of foods and flavors. 

Cookbook author Joyce Goldstein collects recipes and methods in her book The New Mediterranean Jewish Table

BLM/Public Domain

The Bureau of Land Management is generally NOT in the business of managing forests in much of the country; it's usually the rangeland agency. 

But whether BLM likes it or not, it is obliged to manage federal forests in Western Oregon that were once lands granted to the Oregon and California Railroad (O&C). 

BLM recently unveiled its proposed final version of the Western Oregon Resource Management Plan, and nearly everybody with a stake in it has a problem with it. 

We examine the contents of the plan and reactions in a series of interviews, including reps from Cascadia Wildlands, Travel Oregon, The Association of O&C Counties, and the American Forest Resource Council. 

Stand Against Stigma

It gets a little easier all the time to talk about suicide... on a general statistics-and-treatment level. 

Individual cases can still be extremely tricky, because of longstanding societal stigmas about suicidal thoughts and actions. 

Shasta County's mental health apparatus swung into action against the taboos, creating "Stand Against Stigma." 

The project features a number of people putting their faces and stories forward, letting the world know of their struggles with depression and other mental illness. 

Basic Books

"Something in the way she moves..."  George Harrison had a particular person in mind when he wrote his song, but movement really makes us who we are. 

Case in point: sharks and dolphins.  One's a fish, one's a mammal, but because of where they live and how they have to move, they look very similar. 

Other astounding parallels abound in nature, and they are well-documented in biologist Matt Wilkinson's book Restless Creatures

Brian Turner via Flickr

When you get your primary ballot in hand, are there parts you just skip over, like maybe the races for judges? 

Both Oregon and California elect judges from statewide down to the local level, while other states feature many appointed judgeships. 

Is one system better than the other?  We put that question to the Brennan Center, which is committed to democracy and equal justice for all. 

womenon20s.org

Alexander Hamilton was supposed to get the axe, but now it appears Andrew Jackson will be cut from the 20-dollar bill, in favor of a woman.  Which woman? 

Tell us in this week's VENTSday, by survey or on the air. 

Our other topic is Earth Day-related: how have you changed your behavior with chemicals to be kind to the environment? 

Listeners take stage on our weekly VENTSday segment, a chance to vent on a couple of topics in the news--by phone, by email, or through our online survey. We provide the topics, you provide the opinions. Your thoughts are front and center on VENTSday.

Penguin Random House

You frequently hear voices raised in opposition to industrial agriculture. 

Now apply that modifier to another term: education.  Sir Ken Robinson, expert on creativity and education, says it's past time to change our industrial approach to pushing young people through educational factories. 

Standardized tests don't turn them on, but a chance to exercise their creativity might.  That's the case he makes in his book Creative Schools

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