2017 Solar Eclipse Point of Totality Part 2-Podcast 658

Seeing a complete solar eclipse at the point of greatest totality is a peak experience. Getting there might be a challenge. But it’s worth it. I take you all the way through it in 2017 Solar Eclipse Point of Totality Part 2-Podcast 658.

Path To The Eclipse

We start about 40 miles south of Chicago, Illinois. Taking Illinois 1 all the way down to US 45. Then onto the Shawnee National Forest. Our target is a place called Makanda. This is the location for the longest point of totality for the solar eclipse of 2017. This is a town very close to the southern border of the Land Of Lincoln.

Little Town At The Edge Of Illinois

Lots of talk about about Carbondale, Illinois as the point of totality. Truth is, the longest period of totality at a little more than 2 minutes occurs in Makanda, a little town about twenty miles south of Carbondale. During Part 1 of the eclipse podcasts we talked with some locals and spectators. In 2017 Solar Eclipse Point of Totality Part 2-Podcast 658 we experience it.

A Peak Experience

With all the media these days it seems like people want to experience everything through media. I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to actually go to an event and experience it in person. In 2017 Solar Eclipse Point of Totality Part 2-Podcast 658.

Eclipse energy is a real thing

On the trip and at the event we saw people struggling with pre eclipse issues. We were pushing so hard to get everything perfect it made for a very stressful trip. At one point my friend Steve said, “We’re in the path of totality now, so it really doesn’t matter where we see it”. Twenty minutes later we found the perfect spot.

Hope To See Everyone Again

Especially relevant is the real feeling of camaraderie we experienced with all the people in this little town, who came to experience the total eclipse of the sun. I think it’s fair to say we all want to come back in 2024 for the next total solar eclipse. In April of 2024 the path of totality runs through Makanda, again. In 2017 Solar Eclipse Point of Totality Part 2-Podcast 658.

Sponsored by Brush Studio in The West End Saint Louis Park Minnesota

2017 Solar Eclipse Point of Totality Part 2-Podcast 658

 

 

 

Podcast 585-Goodbye 2016

Bob Davis Podcasts Radio Show Number 59.

In Podcast 585-Goodbye 2016 Guest Andrew Davis and I have a father and son discussion of some of the big takeaways from 2016 and a look ahead to 2017. This isn’t one of those big stories of the year countdowns that populate the media at the end of every year. Just some thoughts about the year from both of us. What we have seen and what we thought was significant.

Of course in the United States, the big story of the year was Election 2016. Father and son talk about the winners and losers this year and how to stay informed going into 2017. The biggest loser of 2016 was traditional broadcast and cable television news and what is generally referred to as the mainstream media. This year though, you could add broadcast talk radio to the list. The biggest offense for these outlets was the penchant for predicting the future, picking a winner and endorsing a candidate.

From the media perspective the biggest winner was social media and You Tube. According to a recent study by Pew, more people got their news from social media and You Tube than ever before. This is a tectonic shift away from broadcast radio news and news delivered over traditional sources like broadcast television and cable television. This shift has provoked efforts to control what news and links people see and hear on social media sources.

In Podcast 585-Goodbye 2016, the biggest surprise in 2016, for traditional media and politics in 2016 was Trump’s Electoral Victory. For political elites inside the beltway and those who believed what old line traditional media told them, the emergence of Donald J. Trump in the primaries, his nomination as the Republican presidential candidate and his electoral victory was a shock. The biggest factor in politics in 2016 were the misconceptions fostered by terrible reporting and analysis.

Late in the election season the Clinton campaign and the White House introduced the idea that the Russians somehow ‘hacked’ the US election. While a convenient explanation for bereft democrats, even at this late date proof of a Russian Interference is lacking. Moreover, proof the alleged Russian intervention resulted in actually effecting the outcome of the election is even more elusive. Father and son disagree on this topic. This disagreement that carried over from the radio show to intense discussions with friends well into the evening.

With change back on the front burner in 2017 our discussion turns to how to get good information. There will be a need to evaluate the performance of the Trump administration and arguments against its initiatives. With so called fake news, opinion journalism rather than good investigative journalism, having good sources is more important that ever.

Once you have goos sources, you also need context. Good sources include source materials such as reports, think tank studies, documents, and live video. Context comes from reading history, source documents, non fiction books on various topics and your interests. Both of us caution against pop culture books which are nothing more than the same type of rehashing and alarmist coverage you see in social media, cable news and talk radio. They are designed to persuade, rather than inform. Certainly one can say think tanks have biases, which are usually fairly obvious, but reliance on source material from different parts of the spectrum and academic interests gives you the background and context to understand the biases without being manipulated.

Finally, the big issues in 2017 to watch will be the Trump Team’s transition, foreign policy issues including the South China Sea, ISIS, Europe, Russia and China, foreign trade, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Israel’s role in US foreign policy, United States Economic policy. Politically what the 115th congress does and how it does what it does will be significant stories in 2017. Supporters of the new President will be hard pressed almost from day one to defend his actions, and the opposition is treading through brand new territory. Both sides will need objective facts.

Finally, we have a little fun with the millennial obsession with smart phones and the hand wringing over ‘so many’ celebrity deaths in 2016 and thank the sponsored, supporters and listeners to the Bob Davis Podcasts throughout 2016. Happy New Year. See you in 2017.

 

Podcast 451

New Years Podcast 2015 and Heartfelt Thanks. Big thank you’s to listeners, clients and people who have helped me develop the Bob Davis Podcasts along the way. As I review all the podcasts for 2015 I am a little surprised at the breadth and depth of podcasting content. It’s also interesting to note the metamorphosis I’ve gone through, starting with the News Cleanse in the summer of 2014, through to content that reflects more of what is going on in my mind just beneath the surface. The need to go deeper, both personally and on the issues, rather than to chronicle the daily outrage machine has become a hallmark of these podcasts. Add to that the new mobility enabled with Mobile Podcast Command and you have the wrinkles added to these podcasts in 2015. Its hard to believe we started 2015 back in January with Podcast 284 talking about the ‘Polar Vortex’ and end 2015 with podcast 451, which focuses on the lessons of small business, content creation and entrepreneurship. First to thank the clients of The Bob Davis Podcasts, who have become more than clients, but advisors and mentors. Then to family and friends who have provided support in so many ways including my son – who recently appeared on the podcasts with his own content creation effort – and the General Manager of the Podcasts; My Mom. Finally to the subscribers, listeners and contributors to the Bob Davis Podcasts. As I review the podcasts I hope my goal of going deeper on issues with interviews, ‘study pieces’, coverage of the 2016 election cycle that takes you inside events, New Thinking, Walk and Talk Podcasts and talk about the issues that matter to you, the audio book and new radio show, pays off on the promise of what podcasting can be. Thanks each and every one of you for supporting this effort in 2015. Here’s to us doing great things in 2016. Sponsored by X Government Trucks and Ryan Plumbing and Heating of Saint Paul.

Podcast 326

Live From The Mall of America. In the wake of shadowy threats of terror attacks at the Mall of America, a ‘courageous’ podcast live from the mall on a Monday night. (Editor’s Note: Maybe someday I will be able to embellish this story to make it sound like I braved tribal fighters, and small arms fire to bring you this podcast, but not really.) As Congress debates defunding as a protest over President Obama’s executive orders on illegal immigrants, the Department of Homeland Security begins to plan for the imminent ‘shutdown’. Except the department doesn’t really shut down. Some fifteen thousand employees – mostly in the TSA – will be ‘furloughed’. The rest of its employees and managers show up for work, though they may miss a paycheck or two. Keep in mind, federal employee benefits and pay are much higher than the private sector. So, while Dave the TSA guy may have to stay home for a few days, he has a job when this whole thing is over. But when you get laid off from that major retailer, you’re out of a job. So, pardon me for not gnashing my teeth over the DHS ‘Shutdown’. This year’s Oscar telecast may as well have been a Sunday morning talk show on MSNBC for all the posturing and political speech, not to mention its ratings. What does Hollywood do when it has a bad year? Trot out stars to make political statements, so people talk! Apparently the word is, the producers of the Oscar telecast think that since the Academy is mostly old, white and rich, they needed to spice it up. The problem is, middle America has just about had it with billionaire screen stars telling them what they ought to believe about anything. It’s becoming obvious Hollywood and Washington are out of touch. In this podcast a little about the history of Hollywood’s involvement with Washington, and its shadowy ties to the Chicago Outfit. And if the scolds telling you what to think isn’t enough, now the Federal Government wants you to switch to a plant based diet. Yep, they want to make your dad a vegetarian, and monitor his television viewing. That’s all we need. The good news is the redemption of coffee. Researchers now say the Black Gold is one of the best things for you, and you can drink a lot more than you do. Sponsored by Depot Star

Podcast 322

Cooking Asian at 2 am. These days we hear people say its impossible to cook for one, impossible to cook good nutritious food, too expensive to make healthy dinners, too late to cook, blah blah blah. All you need is a rice cooker, wok and a hot plate, and you can cook great asian food. On a freezing cold February night, join The Bob Davis Podcasts for dinner as we make a great ‘Asian’ dinner, and it takes less than thirty minutes, give or take. (Editor’s Note: Got this idea from eating at one of my favorite places in Chicago, Penny’s Noodles. I ate there so much I thought, I can make this. It took a few tries, and a lot of errors, but I figured out how to make something good. Try it out and let me know how you’ve changed the recipe, or not.) All the ingredients and steps are right here in this podcast. From the brown rice to the basil, to the lime, beef, carrots, garlic, scallions and of course lots of jalapeño peppers! And let’s not forget hot coffee. Lots. Of. Hot. Coffee. So what’s with the 2am? The Bob Davis Podcasts are nocturnal, cranking out the podcasts so they’re hot, fresh and ready for your morning commute. So, 2 in the morning here is like 2 in the afternoon for everyone else. In the time it takes to cook a pizza in the oven, you can have something a lot better if you follow these steps. Sponsored by Depot Star

Podcast 320

The Islamic State Threat. What should the United States do about the Islamic State? As attacks, beheadings and burnings become more extreme, the west’s response seems muddled. The public discussion of the issue is emotional and often devoid of facts, lately centering on whether the Islamic State is payback for the Crusades. Last summer President Obama initiated airstrikes on the Islamic State; a group he had referred to as the ‘JV Team’ of terrorists, a remark which will go down as one of the greater mistakes of his administration. Later he called for airstrikes, promising ‘no boots on the ground’, now he is asking Congress for a new force authorization which may or may not give Obama – or the next president – authority to send troops into the region to fight the Islamic State. As the group expands into Libya, Yemen and threatens Europe, it’s time for ordinary Americans to start thinking about what the country’s response should be. Yes, this will be an election issue in 2016 because the threat will get worse before it gets better. Has anyone told you how the Islamic State differs from Al Qaeda? What are the theological underpinnings of the group and how does its theology appeal to Sunni Tribes in the region? Is this a religious conflict, or tribal? What is Iran’s role in the fight? These aren’t questions for foreign policy experts, but for ordinary Americans who are going to be voting for presidential candidates, as the 2016 race begins in less than one year. Do you know what you need to know? Or, are you ok with going into another conflict, where service men and women are going to die, without asking the important questions; Why? What are the stakes? What is the foreign policy of the United States. What should it be? How do we conduct ourselves in the world? What interests are we willing to use deadly force to protect? How might we have caused this conflict. How do we avoid this happening in the future? What have we learned as a people about these kinds of struggles, since the US first invaded Iraq in 2003. Has our Afghanistan experience taught us anything? You can listen to people scream and yell at each other on cable TV news and talk radio, or we can get down to business and discuss as many parameters of the issue as possible (Editor’s Note: Or at least the parameters I have been able to research so far). The Islamic State is a gathering storm. The current state of affairs in the Middle East is becoming a dangerous threat to the region and Europe directly, maybe the United States directly. The old World War 2 and Cold War foreign policy paradigms won’t work. Those who are ignorant of at least the broad contours of the situation are more easily manipulated in the political process. Take some time and get a little more balanced view of the situation. Sponsored by Depot Star

Podcast 316

Midweek Updates. Live from the newsroom at the Bob Davis Podcasts. Bruce Jenner allegedly kills someone and everyone is talking about Brian Williams. Go figure. NBC News still doesn’t know what to do with the news anchor who embellished stories about Iraq, and now apparently Katrina, and whether he saved puppies or not when he ‘was a fireman’. If Williams is forced to leave, NBC will have to write him a check for fifty million dollars. Williams just signed a five year contract with the network for ten million dollars a year, so he might NOT be singing ‘Don’t Cry For Me Argentina’. Alas, the news media IS crying for Williams. The New York Times says Williams is a victim of ‘false memory’, which apparently a lot of us have. The Minneapolis Star Tribune suggests this is a time for forgiveness. Why are they apologizing for Williams when real reporters – not to mention American servicemen and women – are actually dying when they cover the news, or being beheaded, or something like that. Even more sad news than the fall of a ‘hero’ television presenter is the sad story of Whitney Houston’s daughter Bobbi Kristina Brown. The Brown family says they’ll remove Bobby from life support today, February 11th, the same day her mother passed. Bobby always said when Whitney died, she lost more than her mom, she lost her best friend. Yet more sad? IRS head John Koskinen says ILLEGAL aliens will be able to receive back earned income tax credit payments for as long as they have been in the US. Millions of illegals could receive millions of dollars in payouts, financed by American Taxpayers. It seems President Obama executive memoranda which amnestied these people neglected to exempt them from such payments, so Koskinen wants to be on the ‘safe side’. Enough to make us want to remove ourselves from life support. A town in Pennsylvania is placing signs at the edge of town that say, “This is NOT a Gun free Zone”, which is driving the gun control zealots into a frenzy. One of them says the signs will mean criminals will shoot first, and that Conoy Township ‘will be like the wild west’. The town says they’ll take that bet. Minnesota Governor Dayton’s struggle with the House over huge pay raises for his commissioners has descended into a battle over whether the Governor will testify. He says he’ll meet with legislators but won’t testify. He also offered to do what he can to increase the pay of legislators! Meanwhile it appears the Republican House has a little  ‘splainin’ to do as well, since GOP operative and House employee Ben Golnick was also given a huge raise and makes over six figures. Sigh. In Michigan legislators are considering a bill which would outlaw subsidies to businesses. It seems Michigan is on the hook for 6 billion dollars in subsidies to auto companies. And you wonder why Detroit is a wasteland. Great idea, by the way. And eggs are good for you! Sponsored by Depotstar