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The Sound of Ideas

The Sound of Ideas: Archive by Date

September 2008

David Giffels Goes All The Way Home

Posted September 1, 2008
Topics: Arts and Culture, Other, Housing/Real Estate, Parenting/Child Care

Guys with masters degrees in creative writing don't typically live in mansions. Unless, of course, the mansion is falling down and sells for just 65-thousand dollars, and the guy with the degree is David Giffels. Twelve years ago, Giffels and his wife moved their growing family into a crumbling relic and began to kick out the raccoons and the wisteria in the attic. The Beacon Journal columnist tells the story--part This Old House, very little Father Knows Best, very enjoyably written--in his new book All the Way Home: Building a Family in a Falling Down House. Monday morning at 9 o'clock, we bring you a special Labor Day rebroadcast of our conversation with David Giffels.

Swing State 2008: The Republican Convention

Posted September 2, 2008
Topics: Government/Politics

John McCain's selection of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as his running mate was, by all counts, a game changer. And in the days since, each bit of new information about the Republican running mate has seemed to change the game even more. On our program, we'll provide analysis of the McCain-Palin ticket and the challenges facing Republicans as they begin a truncated convention in the Twin Cities. Join us Tuesday morning at 9 a.m.

Tremont: A Neighborhood’s Story Of Change & Sustainability

Posted September 3, 2008
Topics: Arts and Culture, Economy, Other, Community/Human Interest, Courts/Crime - Fire/Law Enforcement, Ethics/Religion, Housing/Real Estate, Immigration

Many people tend to think of Tremont as a place of trendy restaurants, she-she bars or a place of high-profile crime. But it's home to thousands of long-time residents who are fiercely proud of living there. On Wednesday, September 3rd, the Sound of Ideas® will broadcast live from the front porch of St. Augustine's rectory on W. 14th. We'll talk with church leaders, residents and business owners to find out, what's it like to live in the Tremont neighborhood? How has the community handled the recent arson of Cleveland City Councilman Joe Cimperman's home, and what does the region have to learn from the Tremont experience? We'll also find out why, as many residents say, they have such a strong feeling of "belonging?" Tremont, a community, on The Sound of Ideas®.

The Weekly Reporters’ Roundtable

Posted September 4, 2008
Topics: Economy, Regional Economy/Business - Analysis and Trends, Government/Politics

This week, a school shooting leaves an east side suburb unhurt but uneasy; Democratic party insiders begin narrowing the field of possible replacements for Stephanie Tubbs Jones; and an appeals court says the state's business tax cannot be applied to grocery stores or to take-out food. On our program, we'll talk about those stories and get an Alaskan perspective on what Ohioans should know about Vice-presidential hopeful Sarah Palin.

McCain’s Acceptance Speech Emphasizes Maverick Record

Posted September 5, 2008
Topics: Government/Politics

Campaign aides hoped Senator John McCain's acceptance speech at the Republican convention Thursday night would get him back on message and sell the Republican brand, maverick style. With the Republican "experience" argument somewhat dampened by the selection of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as his running mate, McCain is re-emphasizing his renegade Republican past and the reformer image of Palin. Friday morning on The Sound of Ideas it's the Republican hour; we’ll asses McCain's convention performance and how well he makes the case for his election as President. We also want to hear how the message and the choice of Palin resonates with you. Where is this presidential contest headed now? Call in and share at 9 on 90.3.

Stefan Fatsis’ Few Seconds of Panic

Posted September 8, 2008
Topics: Other, Community/Human Interest, Miscellaneous

Author Stefan Fatsis lived the sports fan's dream: suiting up in the NFL, playing among the world's best athletes in training camp. In A Few Seconds of Panic, the sportswriter describes not only his own journey of pulling off a modern day George Plimpton imitation but also of the inner workings of the modern-day NFL. As the regular season begins, Fatsis will be our guest Monday morning at 9 a.m.

Newt Gingrich Issues Bipartisan Call

Posted September 9, 2008
Topics: Economy, Education, Environment, Government/Politics, Health

Fourteen years ago he was the architect of the Republican Revolution and the Contract with America. Today Newt Gingrich calls himself a champion of bipartisanship. Before the former Speaker of the House addresses an audience at Oberlin College later this month, he joins us to talk about the political season and his current reform efforts focused on energy, health care and education. Also, a November ballot issue will ask Ohio voters to ratify recent payday lending restrictions. We'll hear from both sides of that debate. You're invited to join both conversations Tuesday morning at 9 a.m.

The Fate of the 11th Congressional District

Posted September 10, 2008
Topics: Government/Politics

This Thursday, Democratic party insiders will vote to name a replacement for the late Stephanie Tubbs Jones' on the the November ballot. It's a process, however, that so far has been marked by closed door meetings and backroom dealings. On the Sound of Ideas® we'll talk with party leaders and others in the 11th Congressional District about the process to find a replacement for Tubbs Jones and try to get a handle on what the candidates vying for the job would do if chosen. The Democratic Party's nominee faces only token Republican opposition in the November general election, so this week's executive committee decision will likely identify the district's next representative in Congress. Join the conversation Wednesday morning at nine on 90.3.

Reporters’ Roundtable

Posted September 11, 2008
Topics: Economy, Education, Government/Politics, Other, Courts/Crime - Fire/Law Enforcement, Housing/Real Estate

This week Summit County officials indict 19 on mortgage fraud charges; the ongoing federal probe into corruption in Cuyahoga County spurs changes in the Parma School District. Also, this month's release of school report cards have many wondering if some districts are cooking the books. Thursday morning at 9, join us for a conversation about those and other stories, plus, we'll talk with the director of a new documentary that made LeBron James cry.

Why We Hate Customer Service

Posted September 12, 2008
Topics: Arts and Culture, Economy, Other, Miscellaneous

Think customer service is bad now? Just wait. It’s about to get worse. In fact, some companies are “firing” customers who complain a lot. Customer service has gone the way of beehives and Burma Shave signs. Getting complainers out the door or off the line fast is the new business mantra. Resolving the complaint is often secondary at best. Customer Service, how bad is it, why and how do we fix it? Image courtesy

Swing State 2008: The Future of Education

Posted September 15, 2008
Topics: Education, Government/Politics

Barack Obama wants to double charter school funding and dramatically change how teachers are paid. John McCain's education mantra is all about more choice, which is to say, he supports expanding voucher programs and online education opportunities, among other reforms. In conjunction with the Monday evening broadcast of Where We Stand: America’s Schools in the 21st Century (WVIZ/PBS, 10 p.m.), we'll examine the positions of both presidential candidates and ask, which policies would be better for Ohio schools? Join the conversation Monday morning at 9 a.m.

Bank Failures and the New New Economy

Posted September 16, 2008
Topics: Economy, Facing the Mortgage Crisis, Regional Economy/Business - Analysis and Trends, Regional Economy/Business - News

Lehman Brothers' files for Chapter 11, Merrill Lynch is sold to Bank of America, AIG is said to be on the brink--this past weekend marks perhaps the biggest financial shakeup in 70 years. Analysts are using phrases like "tectonic shift," "outsized industry deleveraging" and "fire sales," but it's not really clear what it all means. On our program, we'll help you get a handle on what's happening to Wall Street's giants and what impact it might have on our day to day lives. Join us Tuesday morning at nine on 90.3.

Candidates’ Forum: LaTourette v. O’Neill

Posted September 17, 2008
Topics: Economy, Education, Government/Politics, Other, Courts/Crime - Fire/Law Enforcement, Energy, Housing/Real Estate, Immigration

Seven-term Republican Congressman Steven LaTourette is running for re-election in Ohio's 14th district: He blames Democrats for standing in the way of solutions to the growing energy crisis. His opponent is Bill O'Neill, former appeals court judge who in 2006 ran unsuccessfully for state Supreme Court without accepting campaign donations. Wednesday morning at 9, both join us for a candidates' forum. We'll talk about the economy, energy, trade, and have them answer your questions, too.

Weekly Reporters’ Roundtable

Posted September 18, 2008
Topics: Government/Politics, Other, Courts/Crime - Fire/Law Enforcement, Miscellaneous

With winds close to 80 miles per hour, Hurricane Ike took down trees and power lines across the state. Ohioans are still assessing the damage. Also this week, as Cuyahoga County holds public hearings on the Med Mart and Convention center, new questions emerge about the deal: why are officials handing over negotiations on what taxpayers will pay for the land to a Chicago firm, and why does the price tag for the project keep changing? On our weekly reporters' roundtable, we'll talk about those stories, plus we'll get analysis of who is to blame for the problems in Cleveland's housing court. Join us Thursday morning at 9:00.

Rules of the Road: Bicycles vs. Cars

Posted September 19, 2008
Topics: Environment, Health, Other, Community/Human Interest, Transportation

An experienced and dedicated biking enthusiast was killed when his bike was hit by an SUV in Geauga County last month. Miles Coburn’s death sent out shock waves in the cycling community and renewed calls for more bike paths and safety. While cyclists want cars to be more careful, motorists complain that too many bike riders don’t follow the law or slow traffic to a crawl. Do people on bikes share the same rights and responsibilities as people in cars? Who rules the road, and how can we make it safer for everybody on the next Sound of Ideas®.

What Kids Need to Succeed

Posted September 22, 2008
Topics: Education, Other, Parenting/Child Care

Parenting guru Judy Galbraith says children need more than just love to succeed. They need experience helping others and connecting with adults apart from their parents, and about 38 other things. There's one local district--Orange City Schools--that's trying to put all 40 ideas into practice. On our program, we're joined by school leaders and the author of What Kids Need to Succeed. We'll talk about whether schools and parents from the suburbs to our cities can realistically provide everything. Join us Monday morning at 9 a.m.

Pros and Cons of the Bailout

Posted September 23, 2008
Topics: Economy, Facing the Mortgage Crisis, Government/Politics

Congress is mulling a proposed $700 billion bailout of the nation's mortgage lenders. Both Democrats and Republicans are calling for more oversight and protection of taxpayer investment. There's no shortage of questions about the bailout, starting with whether $700 billion will be enough. On the Sound of Ideas, we'll talk about the debate over the bailout and the strings that might be attached and get answers to your questions about our shared economic future. Plus, we talk to the BBC's Ros Atkins at the tail end of the quintessential American road trip. Join us Tuesday morning at 9 a.m.

The High Cost of Going to Court

Posted September 24, 2008

Run a stop sign in Painesville and it could set you back $95. Do the same thing in Lyndhurst and it's $130. Fines can differ from city to city, but the biggest difference is in court costs: fees that are tacked onto the fines. Court costs usually total more than the fine itself, sometimes much more and they vary wildly depending on location. A special legislative committee set up to study court costs says it's time for change. Join us for discussion on the high cost of going to court on the Sound of Ideas Wednesday at 9:00 on 90.3.

Cue the Happy Music: Marketplace’s Kai Ryssdal

Posted September 25, 2008
Topics: Economy, Facing the Mortgage Crisis, Government/Politics, Other, Community/Human Interest, Housing/Real Estate

In his job, Kai Ryssdal takes the incredibly complex business news of the day and make it understandable to the rest of us. "It's incredibly intellectually challenging," he says, "but that makes this job fun to have. If you're not having fun hosting Marketplace, you're not doing it right." Ryssdal joins us to talk about about keeping the fun in economic news during a meltdown, as well as the art of landing a jet fighter on an aircraft carrier, which is, actually, something else he knows a lot about. Also, we'll talk to the former Goodyear manager for whom proposed fair pay legislation is named.

Presidential Debate Still On--Maybe

Posted September 26, 2008
Topics: Government/Politics

As of now the presidential debate is still on whether John McCain shows up or not. Debates normally are part theater, part carnival and this year is no exception. Has McCain’s suspension of his campaign been an example of brilliant leadership… or a political stunt? What can we expect if there’s an empty chair on the stage next to Obama? If both candidates do show up, how can we get the most out of the exchange? How is our national security affected by an economy on the edge of meltdown? And what questions would you want to ask? Round One coming up on The Sound of Ideas®.

Bailout Update

Posted September 29, 2008
Topics: Economy, Facing the Mortgage Crisis, Making Change, Regional Economy/Business - Analysis and Trends, Regional Economy/Business - News, Government/Politics

Congressional leaders and the President are onboard for a bailout of Wall Street but will the House go along? The $700 billion plan finalized over the weekend is set for a vote today. It includes less money for the government to buy bad mortgages, at least initially; it contains restrictions on "golden parachutes" for executives and higher taxes for failing corporations who pay their top executives more than $500,000 a year; the Treasury will be in charge of the plan but with a bipartisan congressional commission looking over its shoulder. Still the deal faces opposition from some House Republicans and some Democrats who say the free market should not be propped up by taxpayers. Two economists from NE Ohio will help us decipher the deal and explain what it means for Main Street and ordinary Americans who are now being asked to foot the bill of the worst U.S. financial disaster since the Great Depression. Join the conversation - on The Sound of Ideas®.

Bailout Dead… For Now. Country Braces For Fallout

Posted September 30, 2008
Topics: Economy, Facing the Mortgage Crisis, Making Change, Regional Economy/Business - Analysis and Trends, Regional Economy/Business - News, Government/Politics

The House bucked the president and the economists, dismissing warnings of dire consequences if the financial bailout bill weren't passed today. A majority voted NO on the proposed $700 billion bill. Exactly how will the nation fix this mess? What should Americans be doing? Will credit freeze up as predicted? With the DOW rapidly dwindling, retirement accounts shrinking, and bills coming due, it's clear something needs to be done, but what, and by whom? On The Sound of Ideas®, we'll hook up with finance experts and lawmakers and try to get a sense of where we go from here.


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Every weekday at 9:00 AM (EST), The Sound of Ideas reports the news, explains the news, and sometimes makes news. The Cleveland Press Club awarded it “Best Radio Show” in Ohio and thousands daily find it to be an indispensable source of information about what’s most important to Northeast Ohioans.

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Funding for Ideas/Sound of Ideas comes from The George Gund Foundation, The Cleveland Foundation, Eaton, the George W. Codrington Charitable Foundation, The Robert O. and Annamae Orr Family Foundation, and the Nord Family Foundation.