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Current Episode - July 9, 2014

With Rick and David Nazar joining the new Studio SoCaL show, they look back on SoCaL Insider's 10 years. They recall the big stories, controversies, scandals, trends and lighter moments, too. They revisit conversations with pols, pundits, celebrities and more.


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Previous Episode - July 2, 2014

Businessman Paul Musco, a poor kid from Rhode Island who became a leading SoCal philanthropist, discusses capitalism, politics and income inequality. And the Consider This panel examines World Cup fever in the Southland, the continuing strife over illegal immigration, and big-ticket plans for LAX light rail and a Burbank bullet train.


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Archived Episode - June 25, 2014

He warned about the OC bankruptcy and public employee-pension debt. Now OC supervisor John Moorlach tells Rick why he's leaving politics. David Nazar talks to Erin Brockovich and a water official about the controversy over California's new drinking-water restrictions on chromium-6.


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Archived Episode - June 18, 2014

Costa Mesa Mayor Jim Righeimer discusses his lawsuit against the city's police union for allegedly trying to frame him on a bogus DUI charge, and his city's path-breaking ordinance that opens up employee contract negotiations to public scrutiny. The Consider This panel discusses President Obama's UC Irvine commencement speech, problems in the OC and LA fire departments and the legacy of Tony Gwynn.


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Archived Episode - June 11, 2014

In a case that's being compared with the landmark Brown v. Board of Education, an LA judge has sided with education reformers against the state of California and its teacher unions and declared teacher protection laws unconstitutional. David Nazar reports, and Rick analyses this blockbuster ruling with former state Senate Majoriity Leader Gloria Romero, MundoFox 22 reporter Anabel Munoz and Watchdog.org editor Will Swaim.


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Archived Episode - May 28, 2014

David Nazar reports on Los Angeles Unified School District's new program to deal with the shocking problem of 13,0000 homeless students. Feature Story News' Lindsey Mastis reports on the controversy over Hatzolah, an all-volunteer Jewish ambulance company, which is fighting the city's fire department on who should transport patients to the hospital. And Voice of OC reporter Adam Elmahrek offers a unique perspective on the Middle East cauldron: His dad is a Palestinian Muslim and his mom is an Israeli Jew.


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Archived Episode - May 21, 2014

Torrance Mayor Frank Scotto responds to critics who say his city should have done more to stop Toyota from moving its headquarters to Texas and blasts what he says is California's anti-business policies. The Consider This panel talks about the hung jury in the trial of a Beaumont cop, a campaign imbroglio involving the Riverside County DA and controversy over a pedestrian bridge in downtown L.A.


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Archived Episode - May 14, 2014

Toyota is moving its U.S. headquarters and 3,000 jobs from Torrance to Texas. Rick's panel – BizFed's Tracy Rafter, LA Business Journal's Howard Fine and OC Register's Joseph Perkins – discusses why the carmaker is leaving, and as well as the war of words between Texas' and California's governors. And state official Jonathan Kaji says Torrance should have done more to keep Toyota.


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Archived Episode - May 7, 2014

Surf, sun and "clean" air. That's Newport Beach. But the AQMD says a metal finishing company is polluting the air of one Newport Beach neighborhood. The company insists its not the culprit. David Nazar reports. And Rick's Consider This panel discusses labor strife in Orange County that pits the supervisors against county lawyers and deputies, and two Costa Mesa council members against the police union they allege tried to frame them.


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Archived Episode - April 30, 2014

David Nazar interviews schoolteacher Monica Ratliff, upset winner in last year's election and now swing vote on the fractious LA Unified school board. Is she for reform or the status quo? Then Rick and David discuss how Ratliff might impact the big problems facing LA Unified, where a third of students fail to graduate.


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Archived Episode - April 23, 2014

Filmmaker Phillip Rodriguez's "Ruben Salazar: Man in the Middle" separates the man from the myth and reexamines the circumstances of his death. Rick talks to Rodriguez about Salazar, his historical impact and how the status of Latinos in the Southland, and their fight for rights, has changed in the 44 years since his death. Rick and Rodriguez will be joined by MundoFox 22 reporter Anabel Munoz and "Ask a Mexican" columnist Gustavo Arellano of OC Weekly.


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Archived Episode - April 16, 2014

LA power broker Mickey Kantor talks to Rick about his Los Angeles 2020 Commission's withering report on the city's economy and government. Does the commission have the answers, and will anyone listen? David Nazar reports on the uproar over an Irvine councilman's proposal to "befriend" a Vietnamese city. And Rick interviews Antiques Roadshow host Mark Walberg.


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Archived Episode - April 9, 2014

LA cops are under fire for tampering with audio monitors on their patrol cars. And LA Mayor Garcetti makes a pitch to lure the post-Letterman "Late Show " from New York to SoCal. Rick discusses these topics with Joe Hicks of Community Advocates Inc. and Jack Humphreville of CityWatch. David Nazar repots on "trash talk" over LA's new policy for picking up waste at apartments and businesses: Is it smart policy or political cronyism?


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Archived Episode - April 2, 2014

Rick's panel discusses the wide-open, big-bucks, celebrity-endorsing race for a powerful seat on the LA County Board of Supervisors; the hardline stance by LA and other area cities against e-cigarettes; and a 21-year-old kid's sale of his virtual-reality company to Facebook for $2 billion. David Nazar reports on the earthquake that has rattled the Southland.


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Archived Episode - March 26, 2014

President Obama is coming under attack from one of his most loyal constituencies, Latino groups, who are assailing the president for a record level of deportations. David Nazar reports. Rick's panel tackles immigration, the healthcare signup deadline, prostitution and a plan to "run the bulls" in Temecula.


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Archived Episode - March 12, 2014

Rick hosts a debate between former California Majority Leader Gloria Romero and Reagan Duncan of the California Teachers Association over Vergara v. California, a historic court challenge to teacher tenure and job protections. David Nazar reports on a "gun battle" between the Brady Campaign and Orange County Sheriff Sandra Hutchens over her decision to issue more concealed weapon permits.


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Archived Episode - March 5, 2014

Is it time to reform LA government? Rick discusses this, as well as victims' rights and anti-gay discrimination laws, with UC Irvine Law Dean Erwin Chemerinsky. David Nazar reports on the non-polluting fuel-cell car. Could it revolutionize the auto industry?


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Archived Episode - February 26, 2014

Political pundit George Will talks to Rick about Jerry Brown, immigration and the bullet train. Paul Audley of Film L.A. tells Rick why California's film industry needs more tax breaks to combat runaway production and David Nazar reports on the steps officials are taking to deal with the state's devastating drought


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Archived Episode - February 19, 2014

David Nazar reports on the troubles plaguing Irvine's Great Park and the controversy over a forensic audit of how $200 million was spent. Rick talks to KPPC political reporter Frank Stoltze about the legacy — for good and bad -- of LA Sheriff Lee Baca


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Archived Episode - February 12, 2014

LA comedians Ben Gleib and Steve Hofstetter provide their off-beat views on CVS' decision to ban tobacco products, the Super Bowl commercials and Obamacare. And David Nazar updates the case of a Beaumont cop going on trial for shooting a woman in the face with a pepper-spray gun.


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Archived Episode - February 5, 2014

Are Orange County public employees being unreasonable to seek raises, or are they being made scapegoats? Rick discusses with union rep Jennifer Muir and the OC Register's Brian Calle. And LA Unified School Supt. John Deasy tells David Nazar why he sides with families challenging California's teacher job protections.


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Archived Episode - January 29, 2014

With California hit by its worst drought on record, David Nazar talks to water experts with very different ideas about how we should react, the MWD's Jeffrey Kightlinger and TreePeople's Andy Lipkis. And Rick talks to Frank Mickadeit about why he gave up his popular OC Register column to become a lawyer.


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Archived Episode - January 22, 2014

Tom Campbell—former California finance director, former Silicon Valley Congressman, former UC Berkeley business dean and current Chapman University law dean—talks to Rick about what's right, and what's wrong, with Gov. Jerry Brown's new budget. And David Nazar reports on opponents of the governor's plan to build more jails.


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Archived Episode - January 15, 2014

Rick talks to Voice of OC's Norberto Santana about the acquittal of cops charged in the beating death of homeless man Kelly Thomas. Was justice served? And LA Weekly's Hillel Aron discusses a withering blue-ribbon report on LA's economic future. And 20 years after Northridge, is Southern California better prepared for the next earthquake? David Nazar reports.


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Archived Episode - January 8, 2014

Rick talks with MundoFox 22's Anabel Munoz and PBS SoCaL's David Nazar about the resignation of LA County Sheriff Lee Baca, the failure of Latinos to sign up for Obamacare, California's new eased immigration laws, Anaheim's deal to let voters decide if they want to change the way they elect council members and the controversy over restoring a cross to the LA County seal.


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Archived Episode - December 18, 2013

Rick interviews former LA Sheriff's Commander Bob Olmsted, the man who blew the whistle on inmate beatings and corruption in the LA County Jail. How high up will the FBI investigation go? David Nazar reports on the controversy over a proposed power plant near Angel Stadium. And the year's top stories and 2014 predictions from political consultant John Thomas and Lindsey Mastis of Feature Story News.


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Archived Episode - December 11, 2013

The recovery takes hold, sort of. Rick discusses winners and losers with Chapman U economist Essie Adibi, California Labor Federation President Connie Leyva and Employers Group President Mark Wilbur. David Nazar talks to black entrepreneurs who say they still face decades-old hurdles to starting businesses.


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Archived Episode - December 4, 2013

He wasn't flashy, but voters loved him. Former California Gov. George Deukmejian talks to Rick about how he turned around California, how politics has changed for the worse and why current governor Jerry Brown is doing okay -- this time around.


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Archived Episode - November 20, 2013

State Sen. Ed Hernandez, D-West Covina, who is also a doctor, tells Rick why despite its rollout woes, the Affordable Care Act is good for California. He also comments in the corruption probe against his neighborhing senator Ron Calderon. David Nazar reports on a legal setback for an Orange County anti-gang injunction that could cost taxpayers $3 million.


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Archived Episode - November 13, 2013

Frank Stoltze of public radio station KPCC, Lindsey Mastis of Feature Story News and PBS SoCaL's David Nazar examine a slew of political corruption cases that have rocked the Southland, including an Inland Empire politician caught taking a $2.3 million bribe. Rick's panel also discusses Gov. Jerry Brown's rising popularity and L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti's "Great Street" initiative.


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Archived Episode - November 6, 2013

Rick looks at the challenges facing higher education with Tim White, chancellor of the world's biggest college system, Californa State University. OC Register education writer Scott Martindale tells Rick how technology is transforming coursework: What's a MOOC? And David Nazar goes to Cal State Northridge to find out what students like – and don't like – about their college education. What do they think of their job prospects and the cost of college?


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Archived Episode - October 30, 2013

Rick examines the rollout of the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare, with MemorialCare Health System CEO Barry Arbuckle and UCLA health policy expert Dylan Roby. Who are the winners and losers under this historic (and controversial) law? Are the uninsured signing up? What about young people? Why has California had fewer website glitches than most other states? And David Nazar visits a community clinic in Pasadena that is embracing Obamacare.


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Archived Episode - October 23, 2013

Rick and Dave update stories they've been following: the San Bernardino bankruptcy, LA Unified's iPad rollout, a proposed Cypress truck depot and the LA Dodgers. Musick Jail Fight: David Nazar reports on the state's controversial “realignment” program to reduce prison over-crowding. And a longtime GOP councilman quits, accusing fellow Republicans of being influenced by outside interests. The departed council member, Peter Herzog, debates Jon Fleischman of FlashReport.


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Archived Episode - October 16, 2013

Rick interviews Harry Markopolos, the money manager who tried for years to warn the SEC, bankers and reporters that Bernie Madoff was a fraud. Why wouldn't they listen? Have regulators learned their lesson? David Nazar reports on a clash between the ACLU and the OC supervisors over how to treat the homeless. And Rick continues the discussion of homelessness with Jim Palmer of the OC Rescue Mission


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Archived Episode - October 9, 2013

MundoFox 22's Anabel Munoz, comedian Steve Hofstetter and PBS SoCal's David Nazar discuss the fiascos surrounding the rollout of LA Unified's $1 billion iPad program, the new state law granting driver licenses to undocumented immigrants and a hate-speech dispute in Anaheim. And Brandman University social sciences professor Michael Moodian looks back at the recall of Gov. Gray Davis.


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Archived Episode - October 2, 2013

Mayor Tom Tait and Councilmember Kris Murray debate the issues deeply dividing their city - and pitting Tait against the rest of the council. Is the city giving away the store to keep the Angels? And author Martin Brower talks about the model masterplanned community -- the Irvine Ranch - and also about being Jewish in southern California.


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Archived Episode - September 25, 2013

A special "energy" edition looks at the controversy over "fracking" and examines California's energy future. David Nazar reports on a showdown between city officials and an oil company in Culver City. And environmentalist Debbie Cook and energy industry rep Dave Quast debate whether California can cash in on the energy boom and still protect health, safety and the environment.


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Archived Episode - September 18, 2013

The California legislature passes bills on immigration, prison over-crowding and the minimum wage, but backs off on more taxes and regulations. Freshman Assemblywoman Sharon Quirk-Silva tells Rick why. And David Nazar reports on a controversial proposal to put a trucking and warehouse complex on the former Cypress Golf Club. Will this boost the city's economy or add to traffic and noise? Did the city and a developer pull a "bait and switch" on voters?


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Archived Episode - September 11, 2013

He's been the mayor of America's second largest city for two months now. He's made appointments and taken on a powerful union, so how's it going for Eric Garcetti? Reporter David Nazar talks to the mayor about how he plans to govern LA and his ideas for creating jobs and improving schools. And Rick and David discuss what's ahead for Garcetti and Los Angeles.


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Archived Episode - September 4, 2013

Rick discusses the economy with Tracy Rafter of the LA Business Federation and Jerry Sullivan of the OC Business Journal. Housing prices are up, unemployment is down, the Bay Area is booming. But how's the recovery affecting "Southern" California? Is the media focus on a Jerry Brown miracle more hype than substance? And fast food workers protest for a $15-an-hour minimum wage – will this help or hurt the working poor?


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Archived Episode - August 28, 2013

On this "science edition," Rick interviews Congressman Dana Rohrabacher, vice chair of the House Science Committee, about his case against global warming and his ideas for space travel and nuclear energy. He discusses his hard-line on immigration, too. And David Nazar reports on the latest projects at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.


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Archived Episode - August 21, 2013

Has NASA become an also-ran in the space race? David Nazar interviews NASA's top man, Charles Bolden, about the agency's present and future. Rick talks to OC Weekly's Gustavo Arellano and political consultant John Thomas about a judge's temporary halt of the California bullet train project, calls for LA Sheriff Lee Baca to step aside and the OC Register's eyebrow-raising moves in Long Beach and Anaheim.


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Archived Episode - August 14, 2013

Santa Ana is paying its new city manager more than $500,000 a year, but is he worth it? The latest state bill to promote "green" energy by spreading the cost of solar panels could have many ratepayers seeing "red." LA's former mayor is headed to Harvard. Are the Dodgers headed to the World Series? Rick discusses these stories with the L.A. Business Journal's Charles Crumpley, Feature Story News' Lindsey Mastis and PBS SoCaL's David Nazar.


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Archived Episode - July 31, 2013

A federal task force's probe of OC government corruption, the continuing debate over immigration, a showdown between new LA Mayor Eric Garcetti and the DWP, and an upset in a race for LA City Council. Rick examines all of these stories with KPCC's Frank Stoltze, MundoFox 22's Anabel Munoz and PBS SoCal's David Nazar.


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Archived Episode - July 24, 2013

David Nazar gets community leader Marqueece Harris-Dawson's reaction to the George Zimmerman verdict in the Trayvon Martin slaying. And Nazar reports on the divide in Anaheim over a call to change the way the city elects its council members. Journalist Will Swaim joins Rick to discuss the Detroit bankruptcy: Is Los Angeles also in danger?


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Archived Episode - July 17, 2013

Retired fighter pilot Jim Smith, the U.S. ambassador to Saudi Arabia, talks about America's "unloved" ally, and how the Arab Spring is impacting the desert kingdom. Retired judge Jim Gray tells Rick about the new drive to legalize pot in California. And David Nazar reports on the AQMD's controversial decision to regulate beach fire pits. Is this about public health or a few coastal homeowners driving visitors off the beach?


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Archived Episode - July 11, 2013

San Bernardino officials are fighting for their political lives as their city goes bankrupt. They're involved with one of the nation's largest municipal recall efforts ever. Do neighbors finally have the courage and the signatures to tell city leaders they're not going to take it anymore? Or is the council getting thrown under the bus for a situation it did not create? Guest host David Nazar discusses these questions and more with his panel: Ryan Hagen and Jessica Keating with the San Bernardino Sun, and Orange County Supervisor, John Moorlach.


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Archived Episode - June 19, 2013

Rick talks to KPCC's Frank Stoltze and OC Weekly's Gustavo Arellano about the San Onofre nuclear plant closing and the FBI's corruption probe of LA politics. And one of the most popular game-show hosts of all time, Monty Hall, sits down with David Nazar to discuss "Let's Make a Deal" and more.




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Archived Episode - June 12, 2013

Legendary math genius Ed Thorp, who devised systems that beat Las Vegas and Wall Street alike, talks to Rick about gambling, investing and why things go bust -- and why he thinks more financial collapses lie ahead. And Orange County Sheriff Sandra Hutchens sounds off to David Nazar about AB 109, the state's new prisoner realignment program.


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Archived Episode - June 5, 2013

Antonio Villaraigosa recounts his eight years as LA mayor, raps the teachers union for opposing reforms at LAUSD, discusses his family life, comments on his successor and talks about much more in an interview with David Nazar. And David and Rick assess Villaraigosa's legacy.


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Archived Episode - May 29, 2013

In this special "Education" edition of SoCalInsider Rick and two of the leaders in the education debate - former State Senator Gloria Romero, and Dean Vogel, President of the Teacher's Association - examine the state of California's K-12 classrooms and how to make them better. But before that, a discussion about bridging the "Achievement Gap" in our schools. David Nazar reports on a symposium by education stakeholders that deals with what they regard as one of today's most pressing civil-rights issues - the improvement of our schools.


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Archived Episode - May 22, 2013

One of LA's top business and civic leaders, City National Bank CEO Russell Goldsmith, tells Rick what he would like to see Los Angeles Mayor-elect Eric Garcetti do to boost the city's economy and create jobs. LA Unifed school board vice president Tamar Galatzan talks to David Nazar about what can be done to improve inner-city schools.


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Archived Episode - May 15, 2013

Rob Eshman of the Jewish Journal, Lindsey Mastis of Feature Story News and Hillel Aron of LA Weekly discuss LA's heated mayoral campaign. Atttack ads and millions spent aside, where do Wendy Greuel and Eric Garcetti stand on the big issues? The panelists also examine a key race for control of the LA Unified School baord and asses the legacy of Antonio Villaraigosa.


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Archived Episode - May 8, 2013

What will California Democrat lawmakers do with their new super-majorities? Where will new tax dollars go? Rick finds out from State Senate President Darrell Steinberg. And water districts send water through your tap, but are they also flushing dollars down the drain? David Nazar reports on an agency under fire and panelists Laer Pearce and Conner Everts debate whether California should consolidate hundreds of little agencies.


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Archived Episode - May 1, 2013

The blame games and name-calling never end in Washington, D.C. Is there anything Congress and the president can – or will – agree on? Two SoCal representatives, Democrat Loretta Sanchez and Republican John Campbell, talk with Rick. And David Nazr reports on a city in turmoil, bankrupt San Bernardino.


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Archived Episode - April 17, 2013

Game shows, talk shows, serials and more, Orson Bean is one of the most familiar faces in the history of television. Rick interviews the ageless entertainer. And the Southland goes on alert after the Boston bombings. Panelists Debbie Cook, Brian Calle and David Nazar discuss safety in the Southland, Jerry Brown's trade mission to China and more.


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Archived Episode - April 10, 2013

President Obama's comments about California's AG and a man stuck on a Disneyland ride are fodder for comedian Ben Gleib. One of the escapees who inspired the movie "Argo" separates historical fact from Hollywood fiction. And reporters Anabel Munoz and David Nazar discuss the Chris Dorner reward controversy, another lawsuit against Walmart and the AQMD's plan to ban beach fire pits.


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Archived Episode - April 3, 2013

Bill Clinton, Magic Johnson, Barack Obama (sort of) ... Panelists analyze the rush of big-name endorsements in the LA mayor's race, as well as discuss the "The Tonight Show's" move to New York. Is SoCal losing its entertainment mojo? David Nazar reports on more fallout over cops' use of force in Anaheim - the ACLU calls for a civilian review board. And author Amity Shlaes discusses her new book, "Coolidge."



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Archived Episode - March 27, 2013

World famous Pastor Rick Warren talks about Easter, the gay marriage debate, the new pope and his role in the hit TV miniseries, "The Bible." And David Nazar reports on a Los Angeles turf war between developers and low-income housing advocates.


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Archived Episode - March 20, 2013

Downtown LA's top dealmaker quits, throwing into doubt the ambitious plans for a football stadium and new convention center. Is it time to give up on the NFL? Sports agent Leigh Steinberg and journalists Will Swaim and David Nazar debate that story as well as the AQMD's move to ban beach fire pits along the coast. And Nazar reports on an environmental battle in Huntington Beach over a plan to turn ocean water into drinking water.


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Archived Episode - March 13, 2013

You may not know his name but you sure know his face - Hollywood "tough guy" Robert Davi. He talks to Rick about his new gig singing Sinatra and about what it's like being a political conservative in liberal Tinseltown. And only one in five L.A. voters chose the mayoral finalists and voted down a tax hike. Are the voters apathetic or disgusted? Reporters Anabel Munoz (MundoFox 22), Frank Stoltze (KPCC) and David Nazar (PBS SoCal) weigh in.


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Archived Episode - March 6, 2013

Just what is an assault weapon? The debate over gun violence rages in the Southland. Some push for stricter controls as gun shop owners report a surge in sales. A Muslim woman sues the OC sheriff for confiscating her hijab. And Riverside DA Paul Zellerbach talks about the Chris Dorner manhunt, prosecuting a cop who maimed a woman with his pepper-spray gun, and a program that helps military veterans who run afoul of the law.


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Archived Episode - February 28, 2013

It's been more than a year since the state launched a program to reduce prison overcrowding by releasing some inmates to county jails. Is it working, or leading to an increase in crime? Former Los Angeles County D-A Steve Cooley and UC Irvine criminologist Charis Kubrin debate. And David Nazar interviews the "outsider" running for LA Mayor, Kevin James.




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Archived Episode - February 14, 2013

President Obama says he wants it and now many Republicans say they want it, too. So will immigration reform happen? Rick talks with GOP activist Teresa Hernandez and OC Weekly Editor Gustavo Arellano. And David Nazar interviews LA mayoral candidates Wendy Greuel and Jan Perry.


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Archived Episode - February 7, 2013

Rick hosts a debate among the four candidates in the heated race for Los Angeles city attorney. Incumbent Carmen Trutanich and leading challenger Mike Feuer lock horns over gun violence. Challengers Greg Smith and Noell Weiss also weigh in, as the panel debates issues ranging from medical marijuana to early prisoner release to the proper role of the legal advisor for SoCal's biggest city.



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Archived Episode - January 31, 2013

Aaron Kushner and Eric Spitz tell Rick why they're betting big on the OC Register – and why they'd also like to buy the LA Times. David Nazar talks with Eric Garcetti, first in a series of interviews with LA mayoral hopefuls. And David reports on protests that are being dubbed the "Santa Ana Spring."


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Archived Episode - January 24, 2013

Larry Agran's 12-year control of the Irvine City Council has ended and the new regime is cleaning house at the controversial Great Park. In an exclusive interview with David Nazar, Agran responds to his critics. And political consultant John Thomas and KPCC political writer Frank Stoltze talk with Rick about what lies ahead for LA's outgoing Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, and they dissect the city's contentious mayor's race.


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Archived Episode - January 17, 2013

It's red carpet-time in Hollywood. What's the state of the film industry? Do violent movies such as Oscar-nominated "Django" contribute to a culture of violence? Rick talks with L.A. Times movie writer Glenn Whipp and producer Travis Knox ("Bucket List," "Hairspray.") David Nazar updates a tragic police shooting in Beaumont, the Chinatown Walmart controversy and L.A's ballot showdown over marijuana.


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Archived Episode - January 10, 2013

It's the 50th anniversary of Alfred Hitchcock's classic thriller, "The Birds." The star of the film, Tippi Hedren, discusses the movie, Hitch's destructive obsession with her, and her life's work saving lions and tigers. And hip comedian Ben Gleib talks about the funny side of fiscal cliffs, debt ceilings and other political issues.


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Archived Episode - December 20, 2012

L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's decision to join the bipartisan Fix the Debt campaign has sparked more than 20,000 petitions calling on him to step down. The organizer of the protest tells Rick why she thinks the mayor has fallen in with the wrong crowd. Counties across the region are spending billions on transportation projects. So why are we still stuck in traffic? Rick talks with LA Deputy Mayor Borja Leon. David Nazar reports on another tax targeting "the rich" – this time in Newport Beach, of all places.


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Archived Episode - December 13, 2012

Downtown L-A is coming alive: New buildings, new attractions, new people. Even the trolley car is returning. But is the city still making it too hard for many businesses to jump in? David Nazar reports. And Rick interviews two developers - Tom Gilmore and Randy Fifield -- who are helping to reshape the skyline.



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Archived Episode - December 6, 2012

The recession hasn't ended for many of the working poor, struggling to keep their homes or just pay their bills. David Nazar reports on the dangers of payday loans and what one group is doing to keep homeowners out of foreclosure. And "Flip This House" star Rudy Martinez, UC Irvine social ecology professor Maria Rendon and Reason Foundation analyst Adam Summers discuss social mobility and achieving the American Dream.


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Archived Episode - November 29, 2012

He's a poet, black belt and now "king" of "Little Saigon." Meet Westminster Mayor-elect Tri Ta, America's first Vietnamese elected mayor. Why did former Mayor LA Richard Riordan back down from a ballot fight over pension costs? KPCC political reporter Frank Stoltze analyzes this and other issues. And public employees in Costa Mesa score a victory, but can the city afford it? David Nazar reports.


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Archived Episode - November 22, 2012

Democrats have won super majorities in both houses of the California Legislature. What will they do with their new powers? Raise taxes? Increase spending? Two of SoCal's newly elected Assembly members – Cristina Garcia of Bell Garden and Sharon Quirk-Silva of Fullerton -- answer those questions and more. And in Los Angeles they're "always" working to get out the vote. David Nazar reports on the latest efforts of LA City Votes as the city gears up for a contentious election next March.


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Archived Episode - November 15, 2012

Like a lot of voters, they're for fiscal restraint, social liberalism and stopping the wars. So why did they get just one percent of the vote? Rick interviews Libertarian Party vice presidential candidate Jim Gray. Also, should the federal government be spending millions to try to lower LA's high student dropout rate? And why are activists and residents against luxury homes in Orange County's Trabuco Canyon? David Nazar has both reports.


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Archived Episode - November 7, 2012

President Obama and the Democratic Party win big while California Gov. Jerry Brown gets his $6 billion dollar tax increase and a bullet-proof Democratic Legislature. But after many months of campaigns, attack ads, debates and unprecedented spending, has anything really changed? Can the nation and state avoid going over the fiscal cliff? Does the GOP have a future in California? Joining Rick are USC political expert Dan Schnur, Democratic Santa Ana Assemblyman Jose Solorio and OC GOP Chairman Scott Baugh.


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Archived Episode - October 31, 2012

The presidential race in CA might be a foregone conclusion – Obama - and same for the U.S. Senate – Feinstein – but move down the ballot and a lot is up for grabs: A tax hike that the governor says is vital for schools and other services, races that could tip the balance of power in Washington DC and Sacramento and propositions on everything from union power and the death penalty to car insurance and food labeling. These issues and more are examined by journalists Hillel Aron, LA Weekly; Frank Stoltz, public radio KPCC; and Brian Calle, OC Register.


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Archived Episode - October 24, 2012

Guarding against terrorism -- it isn't easy and it isn't cheap. Does LA's new $60 million federal grant do enough to keep us safe? David Nazar reports. Mitt Romney wants to cut federal funding to public television—and Rick agrees! PBS SoCal President Mel Rogers begs to differ. They debate. And Nick Gerda of Voice of OC has the latest on the athletic supplier slush fund scandal – it has spread from high school coaches to a football league for police officers.


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Archived Episode - October 17, 2012

Californian voters are deciding the fate of two tax measures, Props 30 and 38. Does either – or neither – deserve to win? The issues are debated by California Teachers Association official Michael Stone with Yes on 30, PTA official Patty Scripter of Yes on 38 and Flash Report publisher Jon Fleischman, who opposes both measures. David Nazar reports on a showdown at Irvine's Great Park between the developer and some city leaders.


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Archived Episode - October 17, 2012

Is the "Stop Special Interest Money Now" initiative what California needs to rein in unions and crony capitalists? Or is it just a GOP ploy to weaken the labor movement and the Democratic Party? Michael Capaldi of "Yes on 32" and John Mumma of "No on 32" debate. David Nazar interviews embattled L.A. Sheriff Lee Baca, who responds to critics of his jails and his leadership.


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Archived Episode - September 27, 2012

The law comes down on lawmen as more than 40 L.A. County probation officers are arrested in a sweeping probe. David Nazar reports on the crackdown. State tax official Michelle Steel explains why she voted against the state collecting sales tax from Internet retailers. Long Beach Councilman Gary DeLong discusses his run for Congress. State rail official Tom Umberg rounds out the panel.


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Archived Episode - September 20, 2012

Examining Islam in Southern California and beyond. David Nazar reports on a judge's dismissal of some, but not all, of a lawsuit against the FBI for spying on Southland mosques. And Edina Lekovic of the Muslim Public Affairs Council in Los Angeles, UCI history professor Mark Levine and constitutional lawyer and sharia law critic Karen Lugo debate security vs. freedom. Why did a low-budget video produced in the Southland spark deadly anti-American violence overseas?


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Archived Episode - September 13, 2012

UC Irvine's law school has joined with environmentalist in bid to stop the Cadiz water project in the Mohave Desert. David Nazar reports on the latest salvo in this long-running battle. And panelists Jack Humphreville of CityWatch, developer Michael Ray and WatchDog's Will Swaim debate L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's You Tube moment at the Democratic National Convention, who is LA's top athlete and other issues.



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Archived Episode - September 6, 2012

Radio host Kevin James tells Rick about his bid for L.A. mayor next year, and is joined by entrepreneur Martha Daniel and OC Register business columnist Jon Lansner to debate the new state tax on on-line sales and California's competitiveness (or lack of it.) And David Nazar reports on a SoCal group's fight against African genocide.


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Archived Episode - August 30, 2012

Labor relations hit a new low in Costa Mesa as a councilman undergoes a sobriety test that he claims was a union setup. Jim Righeimer and his wife Lene describe the bizarre incident – and why they want a criminal investigation. OC Supervisor-elect Todd Spitzer and PBS SoCal's David Nazar discuss whether the Obama campaign should reimburse Newport Beach for police services, and whether any of the declared candidates are ready to be L.A.'s next mayor.


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Archived Episode - August 23, 2012

A drug war is raging in L.A. over marijuana. Why is the city trying to snuff out pot shops? Another downer: A report says more California cities are going broke. But TV is on a high -- it's Emmy season! David Nazar reports on the medical marijuana battle. Rick interviews TV Guide bureau chief Michael Schneider, OC Business Journal Editor Jerry Sullivan and Costa Mesa Councilman Jim Righeimer.


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Archived Episode - August 16, 2012

Reporter Lindsey Mastis follows an L-A undercover cop as he arrests desperate young prostitutes. Should voters approve Prop 35, harsher penalties for human traffickers? L-A councilman Joe Buscaino talks about San Pedro's massive port expansion. Is it enough to keep SoCal globally competitive? And a different view of the coast from Malibu's controversial councilman Skylar Peak.


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Archived Episode - August 9, 2012

Beverly Hills councilmember John Mirisch discuss his city's efforts to stop a subway line under Beverly Hills High School. Tustin councilmember Deborah Gavello and OC Register columnist Brian Calle join the panel to debate mass transit, as well as big severance payments for public workers. David Nazar reports on Prop 34, a ballot issue to abolish California's death penalty.


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Archived Episode - August 2, 2012

Fatal police shootings have sparked violent protests in the city of Anaheim. David Nazar interviews Anaheim Police Chief John Welter and Latino activist Amin David. Has the city gone too far in cracking down on gangs? Are protesters exploiting a tragic situation? And Rick interviews leading L-A economist Chris Thornberg about the fragile economic recovery. Are things getting better – or worse?


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Archived Episode - July 26, 2012

What's wrong with our public schools? What can we do to make them better? We'll hear from teachers themselves. Plus, Rick is joined in this special edition of SoCal Insider by three reformers - people who are working to change education in the Southland: Former State Senator Gloria Romero (Democrats for Education Reform); Chris Bertelli, Exec. Director, College-Ready Promise; and Lisa Alva Wood, Teacher, Roosevelt High School.


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 Archived Episode - July 19, 2012

Former Mexican President Vicente Fox talks with David Nazar about the drug war and Mexico's recent contentious presidential election. Fox calls for the legalization of drugs as the best way to reduce crime and tensions. Several California cities are bankrupt – will more follow? Rick talks to mayors Tom Tait of Anaheim, James Butts of Inglewood and Richard Bloom of Santa Monica.


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Archived Episode - July 12, 2012

Obamacare has prevailed at the Supreme Court and now California is moving ahead to implement it. David Nazar visits a south L-A free clinic receiving Obamacare dollars. And Rick's panel -- MemorialCare Health System CEO Barry Arbuckle, Dr. Diana Ramos of the California Medical Association and UCLA health policy expert Dylan Roby – discuss what healthcare reform means for hospitals, doctors and consumers.


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Archived Episode - June 28, 2012

David Nazar reports on a drive to reform California's community colleges. He also reports on a council recall effort in Yorba Linda. LULAC's Tomas Gonzales, Chapman U's John Eastman and UCI's Linda Vo discuss immigration news -- the Supreme Court's Arizona ruling, Obama's "Dream Act" order and the rise of Asian immigrants.


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Archived Episode - June 21, 2012

Rodney King's short, troubled but game-changing life is examined by his attorney Milton Grimes and Black Chamber of Commerce leader Bobby McDonald. David Nazar talks with another man whose life was forever changed by the L-A riots – rioter Kiki Watson. Journalists Jack Humphreville of LA's CityWatch and Nick Gerda of Voice of OC discuss worries over the city of LA's budget deficit and worries over faulty tubes at San Onofre.


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Archived Episode - June 14, 2012

David Nazar reports on the aftermath of Fullerton's contentious recall election. Three council members were ousted, but do their replacements owe allegiance to a local businessman who funded the recall effort? And reality show-real estate agent Josh Altman, OC Register columnist Brian Calle and OC Archivist Jean Pasco discuss million-dollar homes, the Register's new owner and a spike in the crime rate.


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Archived Episode - June 7, 2012

David Nazar reports on a tragic case of police use of force in Riverside County – a woman blinded by a cop's pepper spray gun, the arresting officer indicted. And David attends a peace march to protest youth violence in Santa Ana. Orange County Supervisor John Moorlach discusses the primary elections: Did voters send a message about public employee pensions?


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Archived Episode - May 31, 2012

Jim Abbott, who pitched 10 years in the majors and threw a no-hitter in Yankee Stadium despite being born without a right hand, discusses his new autobiography. David Nazar reports on an effort to get more Hispanics to the polls. And journalist Will Swaim and former Assemblyman Tom Umberg analyze key issues in the June 5 primary.


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Archived Episode - May 17, 2012

David Nazar attends L.A. Demo Day to meet Idealab's Bill Gross and other entrepreneurs who are turning Santa Monica into "Silicon Beach." Rick follows up with OC Business Journal tech writer Chris Casacchia. And he interviews the guy behind the racy Carl's Junior hamburger commercials – and an advocate for pro-business government reforms – CKE Restaurants C-E-O Andy Puzder.


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Archived Episode - May 10, 2012

Rick interviews the Libertarian Party candidate for vice president, retired OC Superior Court Judge Jim Gray. Energy company executive Buck Johns and environmentalist/energy consultant Debbie Cook debate energy: Is our future in "green" technology or do fossil fuels remain essential to our prosperity? And David Nazar visits the L.A. MWD green energy fair.


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Archived Episode - May 3, 2012

Occupy vs. the Tea Party: Matt Ward of Occupy Los Angeles and Walter Myers III of the OC Tea Party debate. Who do their protest movements represent? What to they think about taxes, government, capitalism – and each other? David Nazar reports on Occupy's push to help the homeless in Santa Ana. And businessman Peter Ueberroth discusses California's business climate and Dodgers-Angels baseball.


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 >Archived Episode - April 26, 2012

Marking the 20th anniversary of the L.A. riots, David Nazar revisits riot scenes and interviews L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, L.A. City Councilmember Bernard Parks, Rodney King's attorney Milton Grimes, community leaders Rev. Cecil Murray, Joanne Kim and Marqueece Harris-Dawson, riot victim Maria Muniz and "Kiki" Watson, one of truck driver Reginald Denny's assailants. Rick talks with Peter Ueberroth, who headed the "Rebuild Los Angeles" task force.


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Archived Episode - April 19, 2012

Environmentalist Gary Headrick, nuclear power expert Richard McPherson and Voice of OC reporter Nicholas Gerda debate the problems at San Onofre. Are nukes a key part of our energy future or are they just too dangerous to live with? And David Nazar reports on Fountain Valley school officials' attempt to stop cyber-bullies.


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 Repeat Episode - April 12, 2012

Legendary tenor Placido Domingo sits down with Rick for a wide-ranging interview. He discusses his storied career, his "friendly" rivalry with Luciano Pavarotti, the future of opera and, at age 71, how long he plans to keep singing. He talks a little LA Lakers basketball, too.


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 Archived Episode - April 5, 2012

It's the Mojave Desert Water War. Hosting for Rick Reiff this week, reporter David Nazar examines the controversial Cadiz project that has developers, planners, and politicos square off over water in the Mojave desert. Los Angeles Business Journal reporter, Howard Fine, adds further background and analysis of the key people, companies and interests involved in this long-running pursuit of a precious resource. And in a pre-recorded interview, Rick Reiff asks ex-governor, Pete Wilson, what's wrong these days with California.


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Archived Episode - March 29, 2012

Famed economist Art Laffer says that to regain its economic mojo California should go to a flat tax and rein in its public employee unions. He's challenged by labor union rep Jennifer Muir and "Ask a Mexican" columnist Gustavo Arellano. Arellano also discusses his new book, "Taco USA: How Mexican Food Conquered America." And they all talk Dodgers baseball.


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Archived Episode - March 22, 2012

David Nazar reports on Costa Mesa sanitation commissioner who says fellow directors want to oust him for trying to save the district money. Panelists Jerry Amante, Melahat Rafiei and Charles Crumpley discuss the opposition of nearby hotels to a proposed conference center at U-C-L-A, a pricey plan to turn a Tustin blimp hangar into a park and why more grown kids are living with their parents.


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Archived Episode - March 15, 2012

Should undocumented workers be allowed to purchase legal status? GOP activist Teresa Hernandez discusses a novel immigration proposal. Unions protest a planned Walmart in Chinatown. And panelists Norberto Santana, Brian Calle and Dan Chmielewski debate pension and mountain lion controversies.




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Archived Episode - March 8, 2012

Legendary tenor Placido Domingo sits down with Rick for a wide-ranging interview. He discusses his storied career, his "friendly" rivalry with Luciano Pavarotti, the future of opera and, at age 71, how long he plans to keep singing. He talks a little LA Lakers basketball, too.


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Archived Episode - March 1, 2012

Hollywood and Silicon Valley are in a high-stakes battle over Internet piracy. Hollywood is lobbying for a clampdown, but Internet companies are urging restraint. Who's right? Punk rocker (the Vandals) Joe Escalante, entrepreneur Martha Daniel and journalist Jerry Sullivan debate that issue and more. And David Nazar reports on firings and more investigations connected to a high-school coaches' slush fund.

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Archived Episode - February 23, 2012

We're "still" digging out from the housing bust. Are we fixing the problems – or making them worse? Rick asks Nobel Prize economist Vernon Smith. David Nazar reports on Los Angeles' efforts to strengthen business ties with China. And Will Swaim and Jean Pasco discuss Obama's Southland visit and the council drive in Fullerton.


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Archived Episode - February 16, 2012

It's awards season in Hollywood. Bloomberg reporter Michael White explains the "big" business of "show" business. Former Anaheim Mayor Curt Pringle and Long Beach Vice Mayor Suja Lowenthal debate the bullet train and plastic bag bans. And David Nazar reports on the big-ticket legal battle between Orange County supervisors and retired government employees over health benefits.



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Archived Episode - February 9, 2012

Many kids in Los Angeles are skipping class and dropping out. David Nazar reports on the response of school and community officials. Are teacher unions part of the problem or the solution to reforming K-12 education? Rick moderates a debate. And Cal State Long Beach President King Alexander discusses issues facing higher education.


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Archived Episode - February 2, 2012

U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein talks about political gridlock. City National CEO Russell Goldsmith discusses jobs, housing and class warfare. And Keith Bremer, lawyer who got $2.4 million from the California Highway Patrol for a family whose daughter's car-crash death-scene photos went viral, joins Jon Fleischman and Dan Chmielewski on Consider This.




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Archived Episode - January 26, 2012

The ACLU sues the LA Sheriff over reported prisoner beatings. David Nazar talks to both sides. Jerry Brown says the California Dream lives on. Is he sounding like a leader or a lunatic? Brian Calle, Jim Flanigan and Katrina Foley debate. And Miss California, Noelle Freeman, talks about "almost" winning the Miss America contest.




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Archived Episode - January 19, 2012

Has the GOP become "irrelevant" in the Golden State? Rick asks Orange County GOP chairman Scott Baugh. David Nazar reports on a high-paid water official. A Marine vet is arrested in a grisly murder spree. Could it have been prevented? Former Assemblyman Todd Spitzer, Tustin Councilmember Deborah Gavello and Los Angeles Business Journal Editor Charles Crumpley discuss this and more.




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Archived Episode - January 12, 2012

Is it time to put the brakes on California's proposed bullet train? Project chairman Tom Umberg says "no." Congressman John Campbell discusses Washington politics. And why are crime rates falling? Thoughts from L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, UCI criminology prof George Tita and OC Weekly editor Gustavo Arellano.




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Archived Episode - January 5, 2012

California starts the year with $1 billion in budget cuts and a looming shortfall of many more billions. Is Gov. Brown doing enough to prevent a fiscal train wreck? And is the Occupy movement losing steam? Orange County Supervisor John Moorlach, LA County state legislator Martha Escutia and journalist Will Swaim debate. And David Nazar reports on a program that helps Latino kids get into college.


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View previous OC INSIDER Archived Episodes (2007-2011) >>