Joseph Cooper

Host Topical Currents

WLRN Radio's Joseph Cooper says producing and hosting Topical Currents is the most rewarding experience of his long radio career, which began at the University of Missouri School of Journalism in the 1970s.

"It's now an obsession, but I never thought talk radio would be in my future. The wide, wide range of topics, research and reading keeps me hustling all week," he says. "It's similar to a daily newspaper column because, essentially, we write an essay to frame each show before conducting the interviews and taking calls and then it all starts over again for the next day's program."

Topical Currents is put together by a small production team, which includes producer Richard Ives and technical director Bonnie Berman. Syndicated food and dining columnist Linda Gassenheimer frequents the program, as well as a handful of expert regular contributors and regional reporters.

Topical Currents is a sub-tropical blend of regional issues and politics, local profiles, author interviews, "At Your Service" programs, South Florida history and any topic listeners might banter about around the proverbial "water cooler." It was first broadcast in January 1999.

Cooper is often asked to name his "favorite" interview subject.

"Hmmmm," he says with the hint of a smile. "Not necessarily the celebrities or famous authors but the one I've just done. Well usually.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Tue June 25, 2013

Is It The End Of Unpaid Internships?

Donna Ballman
http://twitter.com/EmployeeAtty

06/25/13 - Tuesday's Topical Currents is an “At Your Service” edition with contributor Donna Ballman.  She specializes in employment law and employee rights.  Many teens are now working summer part-time jobs.  Most are woefully unaware of employment regulations.  There are different rules about unpaid internships, as well. Also news about pre-employment medical exams. Donna Ballman is the author of STAND UP FOR YOURSELF WITHOUT GETTING FIRED: Resolve Workplace Crises Before You Quit or Get Axed. That’s Topical Currents Tuesday at 1pm on WLRN-HD1 rebroadcast at 7pm on WLRN-HD2 and audio on-demand after the live program.  
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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Mon June 24, 2013

The Cost of American Militarism

National Insecurity: The Cost of American Militarism
http://www.ciponline.org/research/publications/category/book

06/24/13 - Monday’s  Topical Currents is with former CIA analyst and National War College Professor Melvin Goodman.  He’s written National Insecurity:  The Cost of American Militarism.  Goodman offers an insider’s critique of the U.S. military economy from Eisenhower’s 1961 farewell “military-industrial complex” warning to Obama’s expansion of the military’s power.

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Food and Dining
1:30 pm
Thu June 20, 2013

Mango Madness at Fairchild Gardens Mango Festival

Bonnie Berman and Linda Gassenheimer
Paul Leary

06/20/13 - 1:30 -Syndicated food columnist Linda Gassenheimer, Special wine correspondent Fred Tasker and WLRN hosts Joseph Cooper and Bonnie Berman interview Dr. Richard Campbell, Director of the Tropical Fruit Program at Fairchild Tropical Gardens.  It's Mango Madness and the Fairchild Gardens Mango Festival. Learn how to grow, pick and use our native crop of ripe juicy mangoes.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Thu June 20, 2013

Surviving What You Think You Can’t

Augusten Burroughs
twitter.com/augusten

06/20/13 - Thursday’s  Topical Currents begins with Augusten Burroughs, who’s written the best-seller THIS IS HOW:  Surviving What You Think You Can’t.  There aren’t any quick fixes, but somehow, we get by.  And more.  South Florida’s mango season is in full swing.

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Ariel Gonzalez
2:54 pm
Tue June 18, 2013

Journey From A Life Of Privilege To The Slums of Russia

Debra Dean
David Hiller via www.DebraDean.com

06/18/13 - In the second half of the program, literary contributor Ariel Gonzalez speaks with FIU Professor Debra Dean about her new novel, THE MIRRORED WORLD.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Tue June 18, 2013

The Possibilities Of Changing The World

John-Paul Flintoffa with his book, "How to Change the World"
http://www.flintoff.org/

06/18/3 - Tuesday’s Topical Currents looks at the possibilities of changing the world.  We’ll speak with journalist, broadcaster and author John-Paul Flintoff about his book, HOW TO CHANGE THE WORLDWe all want to live in a better world, but sometimes it feels that we lack the ability to make a difference.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Mon June 17, 2013

A Guide to the Logistics of Death

When Someone Dies: A Guide to the Logistics of Death
http://whensomeonedies.net/

06/17/13 - Monday’s  Topical Currents addresses the bleak responsibilities of dealing with the death of a loved one. We’ll speak with attorney Scott Taylor Smith about his book, WHEN SOMEONE DIES:  The Practical Guide to the Logistics of Death. Smith was pained by the unexpected passing of his mother . . .

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Food and Dining
1:30 pm
Thu June 13, 2013

The Perfect Steak for Father's Day

Chef Jose Mendin
https://www.facebook.com/ChefJoseMendin

06/13/13 - Syndicated food columnist Linda Gassenheimer, Special wine correspondent Fred Tasker and WLRN hosts Joseph Cooper and Bonnie Berman interview PB Steak Chef, Jose Mendin.  Sunday is Father’s Day - we have tips for cooking the perfect steak for Dad on his day - what are the best cuts and what to serve with the steak.  

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Thu June 13, 2013

Ponce de Leon’s 500th Florida Anniversary

“Viva Florida 500”
https://www.facebook.com/VivaFlorida500

06/13/13 - Thursday's Topical Currents begins with info about the “Viva Florida 500” program.  It commemorates the arrival of Spanish explorer Ponce de Leon in 1513.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Wed June 12, 2013

Constitutional Myths: What We Get Wrong and How to Get it Right

Constitutional Myths
http://www.rayraphael.com/

06/12/13 Wednesday's Topical Currents is with Humboldt State University Senior Research Fellow Ray Raphael.  A prolific author, Raphael’s latest work is CONSTITUTIONAL MYTHS:  What We Get Wrong and How to Get It RightOne myth is that the Founding Fathers wanted limited government.  Instead, they created a republic, rather than a democracy. Another is the Bill of Rights.  It was initially opposed by each state delegation. Learn more on Topical Currents at 1pm on WLRN-HD1 rebroadcast at 7pm on WLRN-HD2 and audio on-demand after the live program.  

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Tue June 11, 2013

Comprehensive Governmental Protections For Consumers, Workers, and the Environment

Freedom to Harm
yalepress.yale.edu

06/11/13 - Tuesday's Topical Currents looks at federal regulatory and state civil justice systems with University of Texas Administrative Law professor Thomas McGarity. He’s written FREEDOM TO HARM:  The Lasting Legacy of the Laissez Faire RevivalMcGarity contends there’s been a return to the political economy which dominated the American Gilded Age Society. He points to weakened environmental laws and looser bank safety policies. That’s Topical Currents at 1pm on WLRN-HD1 rebroadcast at 7pm on WLRN-HD2 and audio on-demand after the live program.  
Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

South Florida Summer Gardening Tips

Stan DeFreitas "Mr. Greenthumb"
https://www.facebook.com/AskMrGreenthumb

06/10/13 - Monday’s Topical Currents is “At Your Service” . . . about gardening and landscaping. We’ll visit with Florida’s “Mr.

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Food and Dining
1:30 pm
Thu June 6, 2013

Hurricane Food Tips

Jan Norris
https://twitter.com/JanNorrisdotcom

06/06/13 - At 1:30, Syndicated food columnist Linda Gassenheimer, Special wine correspondent Fred Tasker and WLRN hosts Joseph Cooper and Bonnie Berman interview Jan Norris, publisher Food and Florida Online.  Hurricane season is here,  Jan gives tips on what to have on hand, how to prepare the fridge and freezer before a storm; how to store foods once power is out and how to tell if foods are OK to

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Thu June 6, 2013

Surviving Armed Robbery, Suicide, Financial Ruin, a Life-threatening Accident and a Brain Tumor

Darah Zeledon
http://www.booksandbooks.com/event/darah-zeledon

06/06/13 - Thursday's Topical Currents begins with the trials and tribulations of Darah Zeledon. Few have experienced such adversity:  armed robbery, a suicide, financial ruin, a life-threatening accident and a brain tumor during pregnancy.  She’s written about it in GIRL WITH THE CROOKED SMILE.  

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

The Reluctant Republican: My Fight for the Moderate Majority

The Reluctant Republican
http://thereluctantrepublican.net/

06/05/13 - Wednesday's Topical Currents is with lifelong moderate Republican attorney Barbara Olschner. After a 28-year legal career, she decided to run for a U.S. Congressional seat in the ultra-conservative Florida panhandle. She was swamped by tea party attacks, branded as an elitist, and finished dead last. In her book, THE RELUCTANT REPUBLICAN, she details the harrowing experience. That’s Topical CurrentsWednesday at 1pm on WLRN-HD1 rebroadcast at 7pm on WLRN-HD2 and audio on-demand after the live program. 

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