Think Out Loud A daily show about politics and global issues, music and sports, books and the environment — all through the perspective of the Pacific Northwest.
Think Out Loud

Think Out Loud

From Oregon Public Broadcasting

A daily show about politics and global issues, music and sports, books and the environment — all through the perspective of the Pacific Northwest.

Most Recent Episodes

A new national role for Marion County leader of nonprofit helping foster care children

Court Appointed Special Advocates is a nationwide organization that recruits and trains volunteers to help abused and neglected children navigate through the foster care system. Shaney Starr led CASA of Marion County for almost seven years, but recently joined the organization's national leadership team. She joins us now to tell us about her new role as Director of Suburban Program Growth and Development at CASA National, as well as the ongoing needs for CASA volunteers in Marion County and Oregon.

A new national role for Marion County leader of nonprofit helping foster care children

Exploring the history behind the Cayuse Five

In 1850, five Cayuse men were hanged in Oregon City for the death of a missionary — despite asserting their innocence. The University of Oregon recently hosted a class that narrowed down the burial sites of the five men, Underscore News reported. Bobbie Conner is the director of the Tamástslikt Cultural Institute. Michael Moffitt is a University of Oregon professor and designed the class. They join us with more about the men, who are frequently referred to as the Cayuse Five, and the events leading up to the incident.

Portland prepares to open two more safe rest villages

By the end of this month, Portland plans to open 60 more temporary, outdoor homes, as part of its Safe Rest Villages program, for people who are living on the streets. It's part of Commissioner Dan Ryan's plan to open six Safe Rest Villages across the city to help transition people into housing. Chariti Montez is in charge of that effort for the city. She joins us to explain what the safe rest villages will mean for the city when they are all up and running.

'Afterlives' weaves a tale of trauma and love in colonial-era East Africa

"Afterlives" is the latest novel from Abdulrazak Gurnah, a Tanzanian-born British author and winner of the 2021 Nobel Prize in Literature. The book takes place amid the backdrop of German colonialism in Tanzania during the first half of the 20th century. It revolves around three central characters whose lives entwine as Germany attempts to expand its imperialist ambitions in East Africa, brutally suppressing local uprisings while using African volunteers and mercenaries to fight against British forces during World War I. But the book also celebrates resilience as two people scarred by war and the loss of family find love and a future that transcends their intergenerational trauma. Joining us is author Abdulrazak Gurnah, Professor Emeritus of English and Postcolonial Literature at the University of Kent.

'Afterlives' weaves a tale of trauma and love in colonial-era East Africa

Cottage Grove receives federal funding to boost tourism

Cottage Grove, Oregon received an infusion of funding from the federal Economic Development Administration to grow local tourism. The city's Bohemia Foundation received a $1 million grant from the agency to improve Bohemia Park, which hosts several city events. The city was also recently awarded federal funding to revitalize its historic downtown district. We learn more about how the funding will help the city from Faye Stewart, the public works and development director for Cottage Grove and the Bohemia Foundation president.

While state data shows a decline in youth vaping, some Oregon schools are still struggling

Oregon is expected to receive about $18.8 million from a settlement with JUUL Labs. The e-cigarette company will have to pay the state over a six to 10 year period, and will be paying several other states totaling more than $438 million. This comes after a two-year investigation led by Oregon, Texas and Connecticut on the company's marketing practices that appealed to youth. But what has vape use looked like for Oregon's youth? While state data from 2020 shows a decline in use, Kris Davis, dean of students at Redmond High School, says vaping is just as prevalent as it was in the past. We'll hear from him on what vaping looks like in his school and actions they have taken. And, to get a better picture of what's happening in the state, we're joined by Tom Jeanne, deputy health officer and epidemiologist at the Oregon Public Health Division.

While state data shows a decline in youth vaping, some Oregon schools are still struggling

As interest grows in the use of mass timber, questions remain about its potential and limits

Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Commerce awarded a $41 million grant to the Oregon Mass Timber Coalition to spur the development of mass timber for use on affordable housing projects in the state. The federal dollars will also fund research into the acoustic and fire-resilience properties of mass timber at the University of Oregon and Oregon State University, which, along with the Port of Portland and several state agencies, are part of the coalition. Mass timber refers to wood products that are stacked on top of each other and pressed together to form panels or beams for use on large industrial and commercial buildings. The Portland International Airport's renovated main terminal features a nine-acre-long roof made of cross-laminated mass timber beams and panels. Mass timber is gaining in popularity in the construction industry because it is seen as being a more sustainable material than steel or concrete and can be engineered to be just as strong. But questions remain about the cost of mass timber, its long term sustainability and applications in different environments. Joining us now is George Berghorn, an assistant professor of construction management at Michigan State University, and the research director for Mass Timber@MSU.

As interest grows in the use of mass timber, questions remain about its potential and limits

Portland clown festival takes audiences beyond the red nose

What began as an idea for a circus during the early days of the pandemic has now culminated into a three-week long clown festival that kicked off at the CoHo theater in Portland last Friday. From physical comedy to interactive improv and modern dance, audiences can experience more than a dozen performances showcasing local and international clowns, and learn the basics of theatrical clowning through a class taught by veteran performers. Phil Johnson is the program director at CoHo Productions. Sascha Blocker is a Portland-based actor, director and a member of the CoHo Clown Cohort. They join us to talk about the festival and getting audiences to see there's more to clowning than just the red nose.

Poet Alex Tretbar wins award, reflects on time in Oregon criminal justice system

Alex Tretbar was living in Portland when he was arrested. The five years he spent in Oregon's prison system gave him time to refine his writing craft. Tretbar was recently awarded first prize in the PEN America Prison Writing Award in Poetry. Tretbar joins us to share his writing and his experience in Oregon's criminal justice system.

Poet Alex Tretbar wins award, reflects on time in Oregon criminal justice system

What happens to healthcare spending and use under private equity ownership

Private equity firms typically buy privately owned companies and restructure them to maximize profits for investors. Private equity has been expanding its presence in the healthcare industry in recent years, with firms buying up hospitals, nursing homes, medical practices, ambulance providers and companies specializing in medical debt collection. A new study examines how both healthcare spending and patient visits changed among private equity-acquired medical practices compared to independently owned medical practices from 2016 to 2020. The researchers found that private equity-acquired medical practices charged 20 percent more, on average, per insurance claim, and saw a nearly 40% increase in new patients compared to independently owned practices. Joining us now is Jane Zhu, a primary care physician and an assistant professor of medicine at Oregon Health & Science University, who co-authored the study published in JAMA Health Forum.

What happens to healthcare spending and use under private equity ownership