Essential Pittsburgh

    • Watergate 40 Years Later

      Sunday will mark the 40th anniversary of the break-in at the Watergate office complex in Washington, D.C. The resulting cover-up and scandal eventually led to Richard Nixon’s resignation more than two years later, and ramifications in politics and society that affect us still today. Gregg Ramshaw was part of the investigative team for the Chicago Today and Chicago Tribune newspapers while the scandal unfolded. He joins us to talk about his recollections about the Watergate scandal.

    • Could Watergate Happen Today?

      If Watergate happened today, would we be able to cover it? Or do the plight of newspapers, scaled back budgets for investigative journalism, and a naïve faith in the web mean that stories like that simply can’t be done anymore? Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, the Washington Post reporters who broke the Watergate story, stirred up that discussion recently on a panel in Washington, D.C. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette writer Mark Roth and Ellyn Angelotti from the Poynter Institute join us to discuss the issue.

    • Root Shock

      In gardening, “root shock” is the traumatic stress a plant goes through when it is uprooted. Psychiatrist Mindy Fullilove points out how the same thing happens to people displaced from their emotional ecosystem, whether by natural disaster, development-induced displacement, war, or gentrification. In her book, Dr. Fullilove uses the example of the Hill District to illustrate how this happens. Dr. Fullilove uses Pittsburgh to illustrate positive changes in neighborhoods, too. She will be giving a lecture on Monday, June 18, at the August Wilson Center. We talk to her about her ideas on urban renewal, and how Pittsburgh has exemplified both some of the best and some of the worst it has to offer.

    • Unemployment Compensation Reform

      On Tuesday, Governor Tom Corbett signed the Unemployment Compensation Reform Bill into law. We’ll talk to Antonio Lodico, co-chair of the Mon Valley Unemployed Committee, who says the bill an unfair and “unconscionable.” We’ll also talk to Ron Miller and John Bear, two state representatives who support the legislation.

    • Igniting the Promise

      This spring, hundreds of Pennsylvania college students graduated from four-year colleges with the help of the Pittsburgh Promise. This week the Pittsburgh Promise holds one of its biggest fundraisers at Stage AE on the North Side, called “Igniting the Promise.” Saleem Ghubril, executive director of the Pittsburgh Promise, returns to Essential Pittsburgh to talk about the event and the Pittsburgh Promise.

    • Tim Murphy

      Congressman Tim Murphy (R-PA 18) represents the South Hills in the U.S. House of Representatives. He’s also a practicing psychologist whose work with veterans is informed by accounts of heroism on the battlefield.

    • East Liberty Farmers’ Market

      The East Liberty Farmers’ Market’s customers and vendors are as unique as the ingredients that are for sale. Many of the customers, have been buying at the local farmers markets for decades. This week you’ll hear the unique tastes of East Liberty’s market goers.

    • Let Freedom Drink?

      According to the website, Pennsylvanians demand libation liberation! Pennsylvania is one of only two states (Utah being the other) with a government-run monopoly on liquor sales. We’ll look at what the privatization of liquor stores in Pennsylvania could mean for the state’s economy with Jay Ostrich, director of public affairs for the Commonwealth Foundation, and hear a statement from Jay Wiederhold, president of the PA Beer Alliance.

    • FDA Reform

      Earlier this month, the U.S. House and Senate passed bipartisan legislation that would avoid drug shortages by requiring pharmaceutical companies to notify the FDA when a shortage might be developing. We talk to Senator Bob Casey about the legislation and what it means.

    • Privatization of Public Transit

      We continue yesterday’s discussion of the ramifications of House Bill 10 with Marty Marks, the Director of Communications for the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 85. Are PAT bus drivers overcompensated? Is privatization exactly what we need to keep mass transit viable in Allegheny County? The conversation continues.

    • LGBT Health

      In many respects, LGBT people face the same health concerns as anyone else, but in some cases, they face greater risk for problems such as breast cancer, HIV, hepatitis, and stress-related conditions. The University of Pittsburgh’s Center for LGBT Health Research in the Graduate School of Public Health focuses on these issues. Dr. Ronald Stall joins us to talk about the center and the unique health issues that face the LGBT community.

    • PAT Bus on Carson Street

      Privatizing Public Transit

      Last Tuesday, House Bill 10 passed the Senate, and now awaits Governor Corbett’s signature. The bill would mean that the Public Utility Commission, not the Port Authority, would review applications to provide bus service in Allegheny County. House Majority Leader Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny), who sponsored the bill, said it will end the Port Authority’s “monopoly.” We talk to State Representative Mark Mustio (R-Allegheny) about what privatized bus routes may mean for mass transit in Allegheny County.

    • Merrell Oyster_The Race

      Merrell Oyster_The Race is an urban hybrid adventure, sending teams of 3-6 racers out on a mystery course around the city. Oyster is the longest-running “urban adventure race” in the U.S., now in its ninth season. The Pittsburgh race takes place on Saturday. We talk to event director Emily Salberg and Jen Parco, who ran in last year’s race.