Boston Public Radio

11am to 2pm Weekdays and 9pm to 10pm Monday Wednesday Thursdays
Jim Braude, Margery Eagan

Join hosts Jim Braude and Margery Eagan on Boston Public Radio, for smart local conversation with leaders and thinkers shaping Boston.

To share your opinion, email bpr@wgbh.org or call 877-301-8970.

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
10:47 am
Mon December 22, 2014

BPR Rewind: A Governor, A President, And An Economist

This week on BPR, we're revisiting some of our favorite conversations from throughout the year.
Credit Wikimedia
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Boston Public Radio Podcast
12:28 pm
Sat December 20, 2014

BPR News Quiz: Year in Review

Cavendish mini fruitcakes
Credit Cavendish Fruitcakes

For our year in review edition of our Friday news quiz we get into the holiday spirit by way of  a seasonal staple: the fruitcake.

Andrew Leven and Mary Ormrod, the  duo behind Cavendish Fruitcakes, challenged each other over the year's news. 

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
3:53 pm
Fri December 19, 2014

Mayor Walsh Assures Olympics Skeptics That 'Every Community Will Have Say'

Mayor Walsh joined Jim Braude and Margery Eagan in Studio 3.
Credit Patricia Alvarado / WGBH News

Should Boston host the Olympic Games in 2024, communities will have say in the location of venues before any plans are finalized, said Mayor Marty Walsh on Boston Public Radio Friday. Walsh was joined by Boston Police Commissioner William Evans for his monthly "Ask the Mayor" segment with Jim Braude and Margery Eagan. 

"I can say this: before any venue is finalized, every community will have say in what goes where," Walsh promised.

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
1:56 pm
Fri December 19, 2014

BPR: From Courtrooms to Fruitcakes

Jim and Margery disagree about whether Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's trial should take place in Boston, but they are in total agreement that the court should permit cameras.
Credit Margaret Small / AP
  • Jim and Margery are outraged that, even in 2014, cameras aren't allowed in federal court rooms. We see what you think. 
  • The Brothers Flaherty: Peter, Chip, and Mike join us to discuss North Korea, the film Selma, and Jeb Bush's 2016 presidential explorations.
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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
3:20 pm
Thu December 18, 2014

BPR Hosts Deval Patrick, Barack Obama, And A Deviled Egg Off

Barack Obama joins Jim, Margery, and Governor Deval Patrick to congratulate him on 8 years of service to Massachusetts.
Credit Pete Souza
  • Sony has pulled the film "The Interview" from release. Yesterday we asked you if you'd still see it, today we find out what you think of Sony's decision not to let you. 
  • Heather Goldstone weighs in on Lima's climate summit and recent research trying to pin down just how unusual extreme events (like Hurricane Sandy and the California drought) really are. [31:06]
  • Governor Deval Patrick stops by Studio 3 for the last time.
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Boston Public Radio
12:55 pm
Thu December 18, 2014

'Governor, This Is Barack Obama, Formerly Of Somerville.'

Gov. Deval Patrick took a surprise call from President Barack Obama on Boston Public Radio.
Credit Patricia Alvarado / WGBH News

Update, 10:33 a.m., Dec. 18, 2014: Scroll to the bottom of the page to watch Gov. Patrick react to President Obama's call.

For the past eight years, Deval Patrick has joined Jim Braude and Margery Eagan on the radio each month to field calls from listeners. On Thursday, he joined the hosts of Boston Public Radio for the final time as governor of Massachusetts. A special guest called in ...

Barack Obama: "Hello?"

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
4:55 pm
Wed December 17, 2014

Normalizing Relations With Cuba Is A Smart Move, But That Doesn't Mean Congress Will Like It

Havana, Cuba.
Credit Anton Novoselov / Flickr Creative Commons

President Obama made a surprise announcement this morning: after over fifty years of frostiness, the U.S. will be re-establishing a diplomatic relationship with Cuba. In Havana, many Cubans celebrated the news, calling normalization "a shot of oxygen, a wish come true." To homeland security expert Juliette Kayyem, it's a sign that sanity has taken over at long last.

"The Cold War is over," she said.  

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
4:20 pm
Wed December 17, 2014

Medical Ethicist: Doctors Should Talk To Patients About Guns

Medical ethicist Art Caplan said guns have become a public health issue doctors should ask patients about.
Credit https://www.flickr.com/photos/auraelius/ / Flickr

It's been more than two years since the horrific shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. Since that time, community leaders have debated ways to keep guns off the streets, and lawmakers have pursued sweeping gun control legislation. President Obama went so far as to pass 23 executive orders regarding guns in the US. By and large, very little changed.

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
3:21 pm
Wed December 17, 2014

BPR: Cuba, Computer Hacks, and Christmas Movies

The Sony hacks have turned dangerous. What do you think is the best approach to new threats?
Credit Frederic J. Brown / Getty Images via NPR

  • It's entirely possible that the two front-runners in 2016 could be a Bush and a Clinton. Does America need to move beyond political dynasties?
  • Brian McGrory discusses the Globe's relationship with Boston.com vis-à-vis their recent reporting errors and the fact that the Globe's staff still hasn't seen any financial information from the 2024 Olympic Bid team. [29:10]
  • Juliette Kayyem discusses gun control after Sandy Hook, Obama's new Cuba policy, and the implications of the Sony hackers. Then we talk to you to see what you think about the decision to cancel "The Interview's" New York premier. [53:00] >>Read more here.
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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
4:07 pm
Tue December 16, 2014

Did The Spending Bill Just Lay The Groundwork For Another Financial Crisis?

Is Wall Street pulling America back down the path toward a financial crisis?
Credit Sjoerd van Oosten / Flickr Creative Commons

The $1.1 trillion spending package passed by Congress this week is, so far, mostly getting attention for preserving salty school lunches and coining a jaunty new pastry-inspired political portmanteau, "CRomnibus" (that's continuing resolution and omnibus, for those in the know.) But Harvard historian Nancy

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
1:58 pm
Tue December 16, 2014

Brian O'Donovan's Favorite Holiday Shows

The Christmas Revels at intermission. A Celtic Sojourn host Brian O'Donovan recommended The Christmas Revels as one of the great holiday shows in the Boston area.
Credit https://www.flickr.com/photos/folkbird/ / Flickr

A Celtic Sojourn host Brian O'Donovan joined Boston Public Radio for his monthly music segment. O'Donovan talked about the Boston Music Awards, which were held Sunday, as well as "participatory" holiday shows he'd recommend music fans go to.

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
8:50 am
Tue December 16, 2014

All Revved Up: Protestors And Police Get Testy, And The 'Pope Watch' Continues

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh questioned whether protestors in Boston were willing to take action for change. Protests have erupted over grand jury decisions in Ferguson, Missouri, and in New York City.
Credit Howard Powell / WGBH News

The Reverends Irene Monroe and Emmett G. Price III joined Boston Public Radio for their Monday segment "All Revved Up." Monroe and Price talked about protests in Boston and other US cities in reaction to grand jury decisions in New York and Ferguson, Missouri. The two also offered another installment of "Pope Watch," where they assigned a rating — from zero to five — to Pope Francis based on his latest actions and statements.

The Rev. Irene Monroe is a syndicated religion columnist for Huffington Post and Bay Windows. Rev. Emmett G. Price III is a professor of music at Northeastern University, and the author of The Black Church and Hip Hop Culture.

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
5:17 pm
Mon December 15, 2014

Sydney Siege Could Have 'Everything, Or Nothing' To Do With Islamist Extremism

A hostage runs into the arms of police in Sydney, Australia on Monday.
Credit Rob Griffith / AP via NPR

All of Australia and the world held its breath this morning as police stormed a chocolate shop with at least ten hostages imprisoned inside. Twelve hours after the siege began, three people were injured and three—including the gunman—were dead.  

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
4:04 pm
Mon December 15, 2014

BPR: Frustrated Politicians, Faulty Prenatal Testing, and Faux Christmas Trees

When it comes to Christmas trees, which kind of symbol do you prefer — real or artificial?
Credit Joern Haufe / Getty Images via NPR
  • Charlie Sennott discusses the hostage situation in Australia, recent attacks in Kabul, and continues his analysis of the Senate Torture report.
  • Joanna Weiss and Jack Sullivan check in about city, state, and national politics-- covering everything from Charlie Baker's latest appointment, and the city's bid for the 2024 Olympics.
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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
4:44 pm
Fri December 12, 2014

Journalist Mark Leibovich On Getting Politicians To Let Their Hair Down And Speak Their Minds

Mark Leibovich is the author of Citizens of the Green Room: Profiles in Courage and Self-Delusion.
Credit twitter.com/markleibovich

In an age where every word, every move, and every lapel pin in politics is carefully chosen and then ripped apart in the rock tumbler that is the 24 hour news cycle, journalist Mark Leibovich has managed—against all odds—to get remarkably candid portraits of some of the biggest names in Washington.

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
4:18 pm
Fri December 12, 2014

The BPR Holiday Concert Roundtable

Boston Public Radio convened its musical panelists for a holiday-themed BPR concert roundtable.
Credit https://www.flickr.com/photos/carbonated/ / Flickr

Boston Public Radio once again convened its panel of musical experts to highlight the best Boston-area concerts, from today to well past the holidays. The BPR concert roundtable included WGBH's Edgar B. Herwick III, the man behind the Curiosity Desk; Rob Hochschild, director of communications at Berklee College; and Brian McCreath, on-air host at WCRB, and producer of the Boston Symphony Orchestra radio broadcast.

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
2:09 pm
Fri December 12, 2014

BPR: Peter, Paul, and Margery

The billboard sponsored by American Atheists near the entrance to the Lincoln Tunnel in North Bergen, N.J.
Credit Seth Wenig / AP via NPR

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
3:42 pm
Thu December 11, 2014

Former MBTA Chief: Officials Have Known About Long Island Bridge Problems For Years

Rich Davey, at right, shakes hands with Governor Deval Patrick outside the MBTA Operations Control Center in March 2010.
Credit Deval Patrick / Flickr Creative Commons

What has former Massachusetts Secretary of Transportation Rich Davey been up to since leaving office in October? We got his thoughts on everything from hosting the Olympics in Boston in 2024 to why it's so difficult to fund infrastructure improvement projects in the United States today.

Highlights from the interview include:

On the difficulty of funding infrastructure problems

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
3:12 pm
Thu December 11, 2014

BPR: Harvard Law School Protests, Rich Davey's Exit Interview, Guitarist Tom Rush

Students at Harvard Law School are petitioning the school to delay final exams. The students argue that recent protesting over emotional grand jury decisions have taken up a lot of their time.
Credit https://www.flickr.com/photos/nkcphoto/ / Flickr

  • Harvard Law students are requesting a delay of final exams due to students' involvement in recent protests. The students -- some of whom were protesting Ferguson and New York grand jury verdicts -- argue the school should take students' civic obligations into consideration. Jim and Margery talked to callers about it.
  • Kara Miller joined Jim and Margery to talk about a new wave of at-home tests. We may soon test for things like colon and prostate cancer without setting foot in a doctor's office. Miller is the host of Innovation Hub. (35:00)
  • Michael Mone is a lawyer for Ali Hussain Shaabaan, a Guantanamo prisoner who was transferred this week from Gitmo to Uruguay. He talked about the process of obtaining the release for his client, as well as what may be in store for those remaining in Guantanamo. (53:12)
  • Former Massachusetts Secretary of State Rich Davey joined Jim and Margery for an exit interview. Davey stepped down from his post at the end of October. (1:14:35)
  • Singer-songwriter Tom Rush stopped by Studio Three to talk about his life and career, his collaborations with artists like Emmylou Harris, and what it's like to gig around Boston. He also played a couple songs. (1:37:11)
  • Is it cool to re-gift? Jim and Margery asked listeners about holiday protocol.
  • Can rock 'n' roll be a religion? Could the Dungeons & Dragons dungeon master's guide be a religious text? Ethan Gilsdorf, Christopher Robichaud, and Peter Bebergal -- three diehard rock and D&D fans -- joined the show to talk about it. (2:07:38)
BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
4:06 pm
Wed December 10, 2014

Kayyem: History Will Judge Dick Cheney For Supporting Torture

Graffiti depicts a Guantanamo Bay detainee wearing an orange jumpsuit, hooded.
Credit Walt Jabsco / Flickr Creative Commons

Yesterday's Senate Intelligence Committee report on the usage of torture by the C.I.A. after September 11 brought 500 pages worth of painful truth into the light. But to homeland security expert Juliette Kayyem, confronting the truth head-on is the only way the agency—and the country—can change its policies for the better.

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
3:30 pm
Wed December 10, 2014

Ask The Ethicist: Capital Punishment And Mental Illness

Texas inmate Scott Panetti was sentenced to die for shooting and killing two people. Last week, the state's Attorney General's office granted a stay due to Panetti's documented mental illness.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Scott Louis Panetti is a death row inmate in a Texas prison. Last week, a judge granted a stay of execution because Panetti — who once represented himself in a trial, and called Jesus Christ and the Pope as witnesses — has a history of mental illness.

Panetti was convicted of killing Joe and Amanda Alvarado. Under Texas law, he was sentenced to die by lethal injection. The court determined Panetti's schizophrenia to be no impediment in terms of mental acumen. Last Wednesday, Panetti's attorney Gregory Wiercioch successfully petitioned to reverse the decision — citing the Eighth Amendment's protection against cruel and unusual punishment — and the execution order was suspended.

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
4:34 pm
Tue December 9, 2014

Snark, Sarcasm And Ill Will: Why We've Stopped Being Civil

Harvard Business School historian Nancy Koehn talked about civility. What is it, and have we lost it amidst our era of snark?
Credit https://www.flickr.com/photos/patrickdown/ / Flickr

Sixty-five percent of Americans polled in a new study said incivility has reached a "crisis level" in 2014. Not only that, the younger the respondent's age, the more likely he or she was to anticipate an incivility in the next 24 hours.

What happened to the days when we were all so civil? What does it mean to be civil?

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
4:23 pm
Tue December 9, 2014

BPR: The Royals, Rudeness, And The Red Tent Author

The White House said the president was looking forward to "thanking The Duke of Cambridge for the hospitality shown to him by the Royal Family during the President's recent visits to the United Kingdom."
Credit Jacquelyn Martin / AP via NPR
  • John King joins us to unpack national politics, including  Cromnibus, the GOP's outrage over the 'Bridgegate' investigation, and Hilary Clinton's lecture circuit.
  • The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are stateside, and visiting with dignitaries from Beyonce to Barack Obama.
BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
4:14 pm
Tue December 9, 2014

Rep. Jim McGovern: Torture Stained U.S. Human Rights Record And Didn't Accomplish Anything

Jim McGovern, shown here in Washington D.C., in 2013.
Credit Lance Cheung/U.S. Department of Agriculture / Flickr Creative Commons

Congressman Jim McGovern of Massachusetts' 2nd district joined Jim Braude and Margery Eagan on Boston Public Radio to discuss today's release of the Senate Intelligence Committee's Torture Report. The report asserts that the C.I.A. kept both congressional oversight committees and President Bush in the dark about the harsh interrogation methods it used after September 11, 2001.

Selections from the interview include:

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
9:54 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

'Out Of The Darkness, Into The Light, And Debated Anew'

Luke Somers, 33, an American photojournalist who was kidnapped more than a year ago by al-Qaida, photographs a demonstration in Yemen in 2013. Somers and a South African teacher held by al-Qaida militants in Yemen were killed Saturday during a U.S.-led rescue attempt, a raid President Obama said he ordered because of an "imminent danger" to the reporter.
Credit Hani Mohammed / AP via NPR

Four months ago, American journalist James Foley was executed by the Islamic State (IS). Two days ago, Luke Somers, another American photojournalist, was killed in a US lead kidnapping rescue operation in Yemen. That same day, six detainees at Guantanamo Bay were transferred, as refugees, to Uruguay. Tuesday, the widely anticipated 'Senate Torture Report' is expected to be released in full.

As we continue to revisit our torture policies, and address the political kidnapping of American journalists,  both practices are very much a part of our contemporary national psyche. Global Post's Charlie Sennott joined Boston Public Radio's Jim Braude and Margery Eagan for a conversation about both torture and kidnapping— which are, in many ways, two sides of the same coin.

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
4:05 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

An Exit Interview With Attorney General Martha Coakley

Attorney General Martha Coakley joined Jim Braude and Margery Eagan for an exit interview on Boston Public Radio.
Credit WGBH News

Outgoing Attorney General Martha Coakley joined Boston Public Radio for an interview before departing the Mass. Attorney General's office in January. Coakley lost a close race for governor in November to now-Governor-elect Charlie Baker. She talked about her time in the AG's office, her failed bid for the corner office, and what's next.

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
3:43 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Will There Be A Second Act For Michael Brown And Eric Garner Protestors?

Lesley University faculty and staff protested in Harvard Square last Thursday over two high-profile grand jury decisions. The protestors sought to draw attention to police and community relations.
Credit https://www.flickr.com/photos/openmediaboston/ / Flickr

The Revs. Irene Monroe and Emmett G. Price III joined Boston Public Radio Monday for another edition of "All Revved Up." Monroe and Price talked about protests over the deaths of Eric Garner and Michael Brown, and what lessons we can learn from their untimely deaths.

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BOSTON PUBLIC RADIO
10:09 am
Mon December 8, 2014

BPR: Marky Mark, Martha Coakley's Exit Interview, and Peter Pan Live

Mark Wahlberg requests a pardon.
Credit Barry Wetcher / Twentieth Century Fox via NPR

  • Charlie Sennott unpacks the effectiveness of police body cameras in a global context, and discusses the hostages killed in rescue attempt in Yemen and the Senate torture report.
  • Joan Vennochi and Peter Gelzinis take on local politics, including Mayor Walsh's latest round of firings, where politicians stand on Olympics, and a potential 'Marky Mark' pardon.
  • Then we ask you what you think about Mark Wahlberg's potential pardon.
  • Outgoing Attorney General Martha Coakley stops by for an exit interview of sorts, discussing her tenure and her thoughts for the future.
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Boston Public Radio Podcast
10:09 pm
Sun December 7, 2014

BPR News Quiz: At The Movies Edition

Credit By Pedro Simões via Wikimedia Commons

On this week's news quiz Mark Anastasio, program director for The Coolidge Corner Theatre, and Ned Hinkle, the creative director for The Brattle Theatre,  challenged each other over the week's headlines.

In addition to catching up on current events we got insight into some of their favorite films,  their take on the vitality of independent movie houses, and why it's essential to have real butter layered on your popcorn.

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Boston Public Radio Podcast
6:12 pm
Fri December 5, 2014

We're All About Eve Ensler

Actors Michael T. Weiss, Peter Porte, Kate Mulligan, Olivia Thirlby
Credit Photos by Evgenia Eliseeva, A.R.T.

The pressing issues of the day like global warming, government surveillance, and poverty are so dire that it’s hard to ask people to think about them, especially on a Friday or Saturday night. But Playwright Eve Ensler does just that in her latest play O.P.C.

O.P.C stands for Obsessive Political Correctness, which is making its world premiere at the A.R.T.

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