• News/Talk
  • Music
  • Entertainment

Hour 1

  • An absentee voter ballot

    Ignorant Voters

    You might be busy this weekend getting ready for election day. Poring over voter guides, fact-checking candidate claims, getting informed. If you're doing any of those things, however, you are different than most Americans. Here are some scary statistics: Only two out of five Americans can name the three branches of the federal government. Only one in seven can find Iraq on a map. A majority don't know the name of their Congressional representative.

  • This Weekend in 1968

    This Weekend in 1968: Political Ads

    Robert Kennedy reaches to the crowd in 1968

    Lately if you walk anywhere near a TV, you'll see lots of campaign ads. Everyone's vowing to make things better around here. A lot of what you're hearing this time around in 2008 might seem really novel. But this weekend on our series about 1968, we'll hear how much of what is old becomes new again. Here's a review of more than 80 political ads over the past 40 years. Judge for yourself what's changed and what hasn't.

  • Music Bridge:
    Doctor Honoris Causa
    Artist: Elephant9
    CD: Dodovoodoo (Rune Grammofon)
  • Inside the Mind of a Torturer

    Sergeant Gray

    The U.S. military now admits to hundreds of reported cases of detainee abuse in Iraq and Afghanistan. Torture violates international law, and the long-term effects on its victims are well-documented. But what about those doing the torture? A new documentary from American RadioWorks examines the psychological burden on soldiers who commit these cruel acts. "What Killed Sergeant Gray?" looks into the death of one U.S. Army tanker stationed in Iraq in 2003-2004. His story illuminates the heavy burden soldiers can carry after participating in detainee abuse.

  • Music Bridge:
    Artist: The Alps
    CD: III (Type)
  • Conversations with America

    Conversations with America: Lindsey O'Connor

    Lindsey O'Connor

    You'll head into a voting booth soon, if you haven't already voted from home, and declare who you think would lead the country most effectively. You'll take a leap of faith, you might say. This fall, we've been asking people to bring us their take on what's important to them as they prepare to cast their vote. We're calling it Conversations with America. Our essay today comes from Colorado author Lindsey O'Connor.

  • Music Bridge:
    Fourteen Drawings
    Artist: Helios
    CD: Caesura (Type)
  • The Science of Fall Colors

    Maple leaves in mid-color change.

    If you're in a part of the country dominated by coniferous trees, with needles instead of leaves, this time of year is just about getting colder. But if your landscape features deciduous trees, it is technicolor outside. But why do the leaves change color? What's actually happening in that tree? We're gonna get all public radio educational.

  • Music Bridge:
    Artist: Steven Bernstein
    CD: Diaspora Suite (Tzadik)
  • Mission: Garage

    Kevin Felici's Garage

    Got some chores this weekend? Raking leaves? Washing the car? Maybe the most dreaded chore of all - are you bracing yourself? Cleaning out the garage. It's the worst, isn't it? Well, for some people, it's not. There is a type of American for whom the garage is so much more than a place to store junk or cars. For the last four years, Kevin Felici has been working nights and weekends in a quest for the perfect garage.

  • Music Bridge:
    Joe's Garage
    Artist: Frank Zappa
    CD: Joe's Garage (Rykodisc)
  • ETHEL's TruckStop

    Cornelius Dufallo

    New York City has plenty of options for musical entertainment this weekend. Sometimes if can get overwhelming. Do you want to hear a string quartet? Or folk music? If you happen to go over to the Brooklyn Academy of Music, however, you don't have to decide. There's a performance there called "ETHEL's TruckStop: The Beginning" at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Reporter Jeff Lunden tells us about it.

Hour 2

  • An Ohio voter during early voting in Toledo, Ohio.

    Ohio Undecideds

    Two weeks from Tuesday voters go to the polls. Election Day. We never thought we'd get there when this campaign started way back in, like, 1840. Obama and McCain are hitting the battleground states hard. Over the last few elections, Ohio seems to be perpetually held up as one of the most important and swingiest of swing states. Mhari Saito from WCPN in Cleveland has been talking with voters around the state for months now.

  • Race and Forgiveness

    Gwen Gipson

    Members of Macomb County's Renaissance Unity church faced the legacy of racism eight years ago. Out of the blue, their white, female minister asked whites to apologize to blacks in a forgiveness ceremony. The church has had several ministers since then. But church members say they'll never forget the impact of that moment.

  • Music Bridge:
    Lullaby From The Westcoast Sleepers
    Artist: Max Richter
    CD: 24 Postcards in Full Colour (Fat Cat)
  • Good News, Bad News, No News

    Debate Sparring, Gas Prices, and Chihuahua Fever

    Rusco and Angel of "Beverly Hills Chihuahua"

    Our panel of non-experts weigh in on this week's news events in a parlor game to gauge what kind of week America had. Joining us on this week's panel are: Kerry Howley, contributing editor to Reason Magazine; Ken Silverstein, Washington Editor for Harper's Magazine and author of "Turkmeniscam"; and Luke Burbank, Seattle host of the radio show "Too Beautiful To Live."

  • Music Bridge:
    How To Adjust People
    Artist: Jonas Reinhardt
    CD: Jonas Reinhardt (Kranky)
  • America's Infrastructure: The Alaskan Way Viaduct

    Seattle's Alaskan Way Viaduct

    In the coming months, we'll be looking at the state of America's infrastructure. Many listeners drew our attention to the Alaskan Way Viaduct in Seattle. The viaduct is a traffic artery a couple of miles long, and its dual levels were built 55 years ago. This weekend, it's closed and under inspection. We check in with the Washington State Department of Transportation.

  • Music Bridge:
    You Set My Face on Fire
    Artist: Global Goon
    CD: Family Glue (Audio Dregs)
  • Curse of the Super-Villain


    Never has the world been so primed for takeover, what with the global economy teetering and all. But do any of our super-villains really want to inherit such a mess? We speak with Dr. Cruelty, one of the leading super-villains in the world about his situation. Certainly he wants to take over the world--what bad guy wouldn't?--but is this really a mess he wants to oversee?

  • My Campaign

    Charlie Schroeder senior year

    At the beginning of the presidential campaign season, both McCain and Obama vowed that neither man was going to run a negative campaign. But as Election Day approaches, both campaigns have taken a more combative turn. At last week's debate, the candidates explained that the negative ads were the result of a "tough" campaign. Weekend America's Charlie Schroeder understands a tough campaign. It takes him right back to high school.

  • Forgotten Letters

    Fifth Grade Teacher Kathy Burns Rosen in 1970

    This weekend, the 1970 fifth grade class at Sunset Elementary School in Bellevue, Wash., will be having a reunion. What's brought them back together after 38 years is an old class assignment. Teacher Kathy Burns Rosen assigned her students to write a letter describing what they thought would be the most important thing to happen in the 70s or 80s. They self-addressed the envelopes.

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