Archive for Flashback Friday

A Bucket of Ice Water

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Nicole Sandler

When Homer Simpson joins in, you know you've gone viral.

Although the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has raised awareness about the disease and a lot of money, there's so much we still don't know about it - thus the need for a campaign like this one.

Homer challenged Donald Trump who actually dumped water on that thing on his head, proving that his hair really looks like that! I hope that dump also included a hefty donation!

My favorite is still this 2-year old

I'm pretty confident in guessing that most people didn't know what ALS was before this month of ice water dumping. Sadly, I knew. I knew about ALS because someone I knew and admired fought the disease and, eventually, succumbed to it.

I first met Eric Lowen in the early 1990's. He was the "Lowen" half of the duo Lowen & Navarro who wrote amazing songs and sang beautiful harmonies together. Eric was diagnosed with ALS in 2004, and lost his battle in March of 2012. 

For the past few months, I've been running interviews and performances from my music radio days on Friday mornings as a bridge to the weekend. Today, as ALS is in the news and Eric Lowen is on my mind, I reached out to my dear friend Dan Navarro and invited him to join me to talk about all of it, and share in listening to one of our in-studio sessions from December of 1999 too.

Dan Navarro has continued as a solo artist, and has worked to educate others about ALS with the goal of someday helping to eradicate this awful disease. He's also fully immersed himself (figuratively and literally) in the ALS ice bucket challenge. You can see some of his work on his Facebook page. 

It was a busy first hour of the show too. Jim Dean joined me to talk about the great work Democracy for America is doing. They've recently endorse Shenna Bellows in her race for the US Senate against Susan Collins of Maine, Mary Burke for Governor of Wisconsin (vs the evil Scott Walker), and more.

And Jason Leopold, who couldn't get to Guantanamo Bay this week through no fault of his own (damned weather gods) but has landed firmly and deservedly at Vice News, joined me to talk about his reporting on Gitmo, national security issues and the fact that his persistence in filing FOIA requests has put him squarely inside the story about Sen. Dianne Feinstein trying to delay the release of the CIA torture report. 

And with that, it's the end of the week, the month and, sadly, the summer. I'll be taking Monday off for Labor Day, but will return Tuesday to kick off the fall with GottaLaff... cuz we gotta laugh, or else we cry... and whatever else the weekend brings. Talk to you then, Radio or Not.

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Kinky Flashback Friday!

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Get your head out of the gutter. It's Kinky because today's "Flashback Friday" segment features Ray Davies of The Kinks!

I had the honor of interviewing him a few times, but today we went back to our first meeting, at Los Angeles' KSCA fm 101.9. I can't find the exact date, but it was somewhere around 1995 or 96. Ray had just published his book X-Ray: The Unauthorized Biographyand was in town for a series of shows called "20th Century Man" which wound up being the blueprint for VH1's Storyteller series!

Needless to say, that interview was one of the highlights of my career. If you listen and hear a bit of flirting going on, you're not mistaken. A few months later when Ray was back in LA, we actually went out to dinner. Nothing more, in case you were wondering. He was a perfect gentleman.

In the first hour of today's show, we looked back at some of this years' Supreme Court decisions. A great rundown of the bigger decisions rendered in 2014 is published here, courtesy of the NY Times.

We'll have to wait until Monday for the final two decisions for this term-including the Hobby Lobby case, but I'm still reeling from yesterday's unanimous decision in McCullen v. Coakley that ruled the buffer zone around abortion clinics in MA violated the First Amendment.

If you read only one article about this flawed decision, check out Jessica Mason Pieklo of RHRealityCheck's  "Don’t Tread on Grandma: The Supreme Court Reframes the Abortion-Free Speech Debate in ‘McCullen’." I can't sum up that article with a short excerpt, so please read the whole thing so you have all the facts. As Pieklo warns,

I hate to say it, but it gets worse: Next term, the Roberts Court will hear the case of Elonis v. United States, a case that questions the constitutionality of laws that criminalize online threatening speech. At the heart of Elonis is a fight over what is and is not a “true threat”—the very question also at the heart of the emerging legal challenges to targeted, individual instances of clinic and provider harassment under the Federal Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act and state-level anti-harassment and anti-stalking laws. The majority in McCullen points to these kinds of laws as proof that the Commonwealth of Massachusetts did not narrowly tailor its buffer zone law enough. If states and localities are so concerned about clinic violence, Roberts writes inMcCullen, then they should look first to these laws, which in the Court’s opinion are far better suited to address instances of violence and harassment. Of course the opinion in McCullen is silent on the looming threats to even those protections.

We couldn't let the week end without awarding one more idiot the "World's Biggest Asshole" award. No, it wasn't the Boehner for declaring that he'll sue President Obama for his executive orders; it wasn't Rush Limpballs for calling the African Americans who voted for Thad Cochran in MS's GOP senatorial primary "Uncle Toms for Thad" or for his calls for the impeachment of President Obama for "doing things that Nixon never even imagined." It wasn't even Glenn Beck for dealing with his stress about Cochran's defeat of teabagger McDaniel by shooting his gun!

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