Talk of Alaska

Tuesdays at 10 a.m. (LIVE) repeating at 8 p.m.This is Alaska’s only statewide call-in forum for discussing the issues impacting life on the Last Frontier. Politics, science, culture and current events are covered by hosts from the Alaska Public Media news team along with guests and callers.

Women started the idea as a protest, but a march in Washington DC planned for the day after the presidential inauguration has grown into something much larger. Now it’s being called a march for human rights and raising awareness of a broad range of concerns from affordable housing to health care to immigration. Listen Now

Yes, suicide rates appear to have gone up in 2015, but there are solutions. We’ll talk to researchers who have been working with communities in the YK Delta for 20 years developing prevention programs based on Yup’ik values instead of Western systems and about the effectiveness of some Western systems. We’ll also delve into both historical trauma and historical resiliency – what makes our communities and people stronger. Listen Now

In late January, scientists gather at the Hotel Captain Cook in Anchorage to share the latest information on such things as seabird die-offs, the monitoring system for ocean acidification, the spread of pathogens in a warming climate, and shrinking sea ice. All of this is changing fast, and we'll have a preview of this year's Alaska Marine Science Symposium on science on the next Talk of Alaska.
Talk of Alaska by Alaska Public Media

We’re at the end of 2016. It was a year of legislative fights over the budget, taxes, the permanent fund and what the fiscal future path for Alaska should look like. It was also a year when Alaska tribes were given a path to put land into trust, and the residents of Barrow voted to change its name. A 7.1 earthquake shook up Southcentral residents and a lot of other big things happened. We’ll discuss them and look ahead to 2017. Listen Now
Vintage holiday decor.

It's that time of year again - the days will soon be getting longer, holiday celebrations to bring in another year are beginning, and on Tuesday a great big radio greeting card goes out across the entire vast expanse of Alaska. It's the annual two-hour holiday greetings edition of Talk of Alaska. Listen Now

Working to make community streets safer for pedestrians, bicycle riders and public transit users can revitalize neighborhoods, boost the economy and help residents get more exercise. It also keeps the air cleaner. These ideas are increasingly being built into long range traffic and community design plans and it’s not just a concept for warm climate cities. We’ll discuss new ways of designing transportation plans for trails and roads. Listen Now

A little-known district court judge in Detroit shapes the protection of civil rights for a nation. A young man and his mother journey through gender transition. On the next Talk of Alaska we'll discuss two documentaries featured in the Anchorage International Film Festival - Walk with Me: The Trials of Damon J. Keith and Real Boy. Listen Now

Last year the legislature passed a far-reaching omnibus criminal justice reform bill – SB 91. It was based on recommendations from the Criminal Justice Reform Commission and developed to both save money and reduce recidivism. It’s based on data from similar initiatives around the country. Opponents says it’s soft on crime and lets people off too easily. But political arguments aside – what does this 128-page tomb actually do? What’s already happening and what’s yet to come? That’s the topic on Talk of Alaska. Listen now

Facing Addiction in America: The Surgeon General’s Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health is a massive report looking at the $500 billion impact to the United States from alcohol and drug addiction. The Surgeon General’s office wants this report to help educate citizens and build a deeper understanding about addiction much as earlier reports on tobacco, AIDS and mental illness sought to do in the '60s, '80s and '90s.

Alcohol can be a fun addition to a gathering, but it can also be disastrous if not used responsibly. Alaska has a difficult relationship with alcohol and the holiday season can be tough for people trying to stay sober or limit their intake. Listen Now

A new book by former public radio GM for KOTZ and KSKA, Dr. Alex Hills, tells the story of the early days of telecommunications in rural Alaska. What it took to connect the villages and who was doing the work. The book is called Finding Alaska’s Village: And Connecting Them and author Alex Hills will be on hand to discuss it. Listen Now

Lisa Murkowski has been one of Alaska’s U.S. Senators since she was appointed to the position in 2002. She’s a veteran of both state and national politics and is running for retention for the third time. She will be the final candidate on Talk of Alaska for this election cycle. Listen Now

Ray Metcalfe is in the mix of candidates vying for incumbent Lisa Murkowski’s U.S. Senate seat. He’s spent years working to draw attention to political corruption within state government. He worked in the legislature as a Republican and now he’s running as a Democrat, but has told the state party, he doesn’t want their help. Listen Now

Six years ago Joe Miller won the primary for U.S. Senate as a Republican but lost the general election. He's running now as a Libertarian. Why is the Fairbanks attorney running for Senate under another party? What would he focus on if Alaskans vote to send him to Congress? We'll ask when Libertarian candidate Joe Miller is our guest on the next Talk of Alaska. Listen Now

Steve Lindbeck is running against Don Young for Alaska’s lone U.S. House position. Lindbeck is a first time candidate. He's worked for non-profits for decades including as General Manager of Alaska Public Media. We’ll find out what he would work to achieve if Alaskans decide to send him to Washington. Listen Now

Margaret Stock is running as an Independent for U.S. Senate. The first time candidate says she will promote a strong national defense and support military veterans. She’s also pro-choice. She is the first in a series of candidates we’ll feature on TOA over the next few weeks. Listen Now

Learning from the past helps inform the future. Clive Thomas’s new book on policy, people and the institutions that helped create the political structure of Alaska is an exhaustive examination of topics such as the state’s constitution and how it differs from others, being an owner state, the politics of lobbying, the federal relationship, transportation, economic realities, state courts and a wide range of political issues. I do mean wide range. The book is more than 1200 pages and weighs 5 pounds! Listen Now
wooden mask

Yupik carver Drew Michael and painter Elizabeth Ellis created 5 foot tall masks in an exhibit called ‘Aggravated Organisms’ to represent the 10 most prevalent diseases impacting Alaskans. After 3 years of touring the masks to Alaska communities across the state and a showing in Seattle, Michael has decided to end the educational journey of these masks through the traditional method of burning. The ceremony will be held on the lawn of the Anchorage museum. At the same time, Michael plans to put out a statewide call to promote healing through community cohesiveness and mutual support. Listen now
Palmer Jr. Middle School 7th grader, Shania Sommer, 12, announced the amount of the 2015 Permanent Fund Dividend. (Photo by Josh Edge, APRN - Anchorage)

What was the original intent of the Alaska Permanent Fund? A rainy day savings account for Government funding after oil was depleted or a fund to pay citizens a dividend and subsidize programs? What happens if the fund is drawn down to help shore up budget shortfalls? We’ll discuss a UAF course designed to answer these questions with former state government officials who were there during the early days.

Alaska's immigrant population is growing at a faster rate than almost any other place in the nation, and most of the people who arrive in the state are of working age. Immigrants are starting new businesses, paying taxes, and helping build our local economies. On the next Talk of Alaska we'll talk about the contributions of foreign-born Alaskans and the challenges they face when starting a life here. Listen Now