The Jefferson Exchange

News & Information: Mon-Fri • 8am-10am | 8pm-10pm

JPR's live interactive program devoted to current events and news makers from around the region and beyond. Participate at:  800-838-3760.  Email:   Check us out on Facebook and Twitter.  Find the News & Information station list here.

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The Kind Of Light You CAN'T See

Aug 25, 2017

Let's talk about light.  You know, flip the switch and the room gets brighter? 

But light is a much broader category than what we can perceive with our eyes.  And science writer Bob Berman reminds us about all the kinds of light we can't see in his book Zapped: From Infrared to X-rays, the Curious History of Invisible Light

Elayna Yussen/Oregon Public Broadcasting

A year or so of buildup, and two hours--tops--of the event in the sky. 

So it is with a total solar eclipse like the one that passed over Oregon this week.  State and travel authorities expected a million people to visit from elsewhere, all to watch the sky go dark for about two minutes. 

San Francisco Early Music Society

It's not a viola, but it's not a cello, either. 

The Viola da Gamba is a stringed instrument that looks like both of the above, but rests between the knees. 

You notice the singer, the actor, the barista, and the guy at the checkout counter, among others. 

But there are plenty of people who make the world work who you never hear about.  As long as things are working well, anyway.  These are the people David Zweig calls "invisibles." 

Amanda Peacher/OPB

For many months leading up to the eclipse, Oregon's State Parks, especially those in the path of totality, were scrambling to meet the demand from campers and eclipse watchers.

The state expected a million people to visit for the event, though not all of them would stay in the parks. 

What kind of conditions are the state's public parks in now that the eclipse is over?

HIV Alliance Promotes Use Of Naloxone

Aug 23, 2017
Mark Oniffrey, CC BY-SA 4.0,

The HIV Alliance in Eugene puts a lot of time and effort into curbing the chances of people getting HIV infections. 

The alliance already offers needle exchanges, so intravenous drug users do not risk infection by using dirty needles. 

Now it also offers doses of Naloxone, the drug that can bring people back from an overdose of Heroin or opioids. 

The efforts included giving instructions in the use of Naloxone at the recent Douglas County Fair. 

How To Handle Rapid Change

Aug 23, 2017
Felix Burton, CC BY 2.0,

You've heard it before: the only thing certain in life is change.  But doesn't it seem sometimes like the world changes faster all the time? 

It can be daunting to keep up. 

But some people do it better than others, and those are the people Sharon Weil talked to for her book ChangeAbility: How Artists, Activists, and Awakeners Navigate Change

25 leading change-makers were interviewed for the book. 

Update On A Brisk Fire Season

Aug 22, 2017
National Interagency Fire Center

So much for thinking that an abnormally wet year would mean an abnormally quiet fire season. 

Even the slowly creeping fires of mid-July have become the roaring infernos (see Chetco Bar) of late August. 


To make the case that an animal needs protection under the Endangered Species Act, you have to prove that you seek to protect a distinct population of the animal. 

And recent research appears to prove a distinction between Spring Chinook and Fall Chinook salmon native to the Klamath River. 

Which may strengthen the case for protecting the troubled spring run under the ESA. 

The Karuk Tribe recently filed notice of intent to request such protection for the fish. 

Public Domain/Wikimedia

It would be nice if we could take a pill or get an injection to either cure or protect us from Alzheimer's disease. 

The prospect of having our brains essentially drain away is a grim one. 

Dr. Dale Bredeson, an MD, offers some hope. 

He's set up a treatment protocol, and he explains it in his book The End of Alzheimer’s: The First Program to Prevent and Reverse Cognitive Decline. 


The flow of children into foster care ebbs and flows, and it is flowing now, in a big way. 

The number of children who have entered the foster care system in Douglas County alone has increased from 41 children in 2013 to 204 children so far this year.

That’s a 398 percent increase, according to data released this year from the Oregon Department of Human Services.

Ken Lund, CC BY-SA 2.0,

Time to take off the glasses and tell us YOUR story of the American Eclipse

Did you travel far enough to see the total eclipse?  Did you stay closer to home and still enjoy the sliver of daylight left? 

We want to hear your stories of the big event. 

So we throw open the phone lines for some of the many impressions formed by this once-in-a-lifetime event. 

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Arguments in favor of protecting this stream or that forest tend to come down to ecological significance or some other scientific reason. 

Robert Leonard Reid--mountaineer, musician, mathematician, and writer--likes the concept of protecting things because of their beauty. 

He explores the concept further in the 19 essays of Because It Is So Beautiful: Unraveling the Mystique of the American West.

Public Domain/Wikimedia

Maybe "umbraphiles" can lay claim to multiple solar eclipses, but the rest of us wait most of a lifetime to see something like a total eclipse. 

And here it is... the "American Eclipse," with a path of totality from the Oregon Coast to Charleston, South Carolina. 

The Exchange takes a hiatus to allow live coverage of the eclipse. 

The BBC will provide that coverage from 8 AM to 11 AM on the News & Information Service of JPR. 


The idea of outdoor recreation differs widely from person to person. 

Where one person may enjoy zooming through the forest on a motorcycle, another would much prefer being able to hike to a place where no human sounds can be heard.  Call that "quiet recreation," because the term is catching on. 

And so is the practice, as measured by an ECONorthwest study funded by Pew Charitable Trusts


Society seems to have gained a new appreciation for bees.  Mostly for their work as pollinators... but can we pause for a moment and say thanks for the honey? 

Honey and all the things that can be made from it--including the alcoholic drink mead--will be celebrated this weekend at the Oregon Honey Festival in Ashland. 

The mind may boggle at the variety of eats and drinks that honey can lead to. 


Exhibition games are already underway in the NFL, and college football is just days away now. 

Don't ask Steve Almond to watch a game with you.  He loves football, but hates what it does to the people who play it and the society that celebrates it. 

We thrill at great catches and long runs, but overlook the toll on brains and bodies.  As Almond puts it, "we want the bacon, but we don't want to see the slaughterhouse." 

United States Fish and Wildlife Service

Legal marijuana puts states in some strange positions. 

Under state law, adults can use marijuana for either recreational or medical purposes. 

Either way, it's still illegal under federal law. 

And people can abuse it, so the Oregon Health Authority still maintains a marijuana use prevention program.  OHA is also taking its youth program, Stay True to You, statewide after a pilot project.

The two major political parties have lost a bunch of ground in recent decades. 

The people who self-identify as "independent" far outnumber the people who identify as either Democrat or Republican.  But nearly all major political figures are party members. 

That is precisely the situation the Centrist Project wants to change.  The projects wants to get independent candidates elected at all levels of government, but especially the U.S. Senate... because electing a handful of independents would deny either party a majority. 

Invisibilia 4/4

Aug 16, 2017

We ask children all the time what they want to be when they grow up. 

The answers can be fascinating, and speak to the larger issue of the realities that we believe are within our reach. 

"Invisibilia" Episode 4 (season 3) explores the issue of the versions of ourselves we see for the future.