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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Food and Dining
1:30 pm
Thu December 20, 2012

Linda Gassenheimer with Chef Angelo Elia

Chef Angelo Elia
Alissa Dragun

12/20/12 - 1:30 -Syndicated food columnist Linda Gassenheimer, Special wine correspondent Fred Tasker and WLRN hosts Joseph Cooper and Bonnie Berman interview Chef Angelo Elia, the owner of Fort Lauderdale’s Casa d’Angelo.  

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Thu December 20, 2012

Body Language Expert Patti Wood

Patti Wood
http://www.snapfirstimpressions.com/

12/20/12 - Thursday's Topical Currents begins with first impressions.  Just a fraction of a second can influence a relationship . . . and those first takes tend to be remarkably accurate.  We’ll speak with expert Patti Wood, author of SNAP:  Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language & Charisma.   And more.  Linda Gassenheimer with Chef Angelo Elia, the owner of Fort Lauderdale’s Casa d’Angelo.  Also, wine columnist Fred Tasker.

Video clip of Patti Wood:

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Wed December 19, 2012

South Florida Author Les Standiford Examines the American Revolution in DESPERATE SONS.

Les Standiford
http://www.les-standiford.com/

12/19/12 -  Topical Currents is with South Florida-based author Les Standiford.  His latest work is DESPERATE SONS:  Samuel Adams, Patrick Henry, John Hancock and the Secret Bands of Radicals Who Led the Colonies to War.  The leaders of the Sons of Revolution were colonial merchants, whose businesses suffered greatly from British tax and trade structures.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Tue December 18, 2012

Conversation Transformation: Overcoming Destructive Communication Patterns

Ben E. Benjamin, Ph.D
http://www.conversationtransformation.com

12/18/12 - Tuesday's Topical Currents looks at how we can improve communication skills.  Verbal expert Dr. Ben Benjamin , co-author of CONVERSATION TRANSFORMATION, says there are red flags to notice when conversations take the wrong course.  Complaints and leading questions can start a downhill path.  And “Yes, buts” usually put another person on the defensive.  More information at www.conversationtransformation.com

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Mon December 17, 2012

Temple University Professor Joan Mellen & OUR MAN IN HAITI

Joan Mellen
http://www.temple.edu/

12/17/12 - Monday’s Topical Currents is with Temple University Professor Joan Mellen, whose latest book is OUR MAN IN HAITI:  George de Mohrenschildt & the CIA in the Nightmare Republic.  It tracks the role of the U.S. military and CIA in the internal life of Haiti, particularly during the despotic reign of Francois (Papa Doc) Duvalier.  Mellen cites ties to the U-S Mafia, drug traffic, and even the Kennedy assassination.

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Food and Dining
1:00 pm
Thu December 13, 2012

Linda Gassenheimer & Acclaimed Chef Norman Van Aken

Chef Norman Van Aken
http://www.facebook.com/ChefNormanVanAken

12/13/12 - Thursday's Topical Currents is with chef, author and syndicated columnist Linda Gassenheimer.   Guest is acclaimed Chef Norman Van Aken.  His food career began in Key West . . . before his mega-star tenure in the South Florida dining scene.  He’s written MY KEY WEST KITCHEN, along with his son, Justin Van Aken.  Also, wine columnist Fred Tasker.  *Today's program is an abbreviated fundraising edition.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

David Lawrence & The Children’s Movement of Florida; Heather Klinker & Grubstake Good Works

David Lawrence
http://childrensmovementflorida.org/

12/12/12 - Wednesday's Topical Currents begins with the Chair of the Children’s Movement of Florida, David Lawrence.  He’ll update the issues and progress of efforts to better prepare Florida kids to learn . . . and thrive.  One in four Florida high school students are dropouts.  A half-million kids have no health insurance.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Tue December 11, 2012

Cultural Competency For the Health Professional; Novelist Junot Diaz

Patti Rose, Ed.D.
http://www.as.miami.edu/africanastudies/faculty

12/11/12 - Tuesday's Topical Currents begins with University of Miami professor Dr. Patti Rose, who specializes in cultural diversity issues which face health professionals -- and interactions with patients and families.  And more.  Literary contributor Ariel Gonzalez interviews award-winning novelist Junot Diaz.  Recently awarded a sizeable “genius grant” from the MacArthur Foundation.  His latest book is a collection of themed short-stories called, THIS IS HOW YOU LOSE HER.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Mon December 10, 2012

“Members Only” Call-In

12/10/12 - Monday’s Topical Currents is our popular “Members Only” pledge program with hosts Joseph Cooper, Bonnie Berman . . . and faithful listeners.  We’ll “turn the table,” and have WLRN members give on-air testimonials, and relate public radio experiences.  When was your first financial pledge offered? How about revealing one of those riveting “driveway moments?”

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Thu December 6, 2012

Annual Holiday Kitchen Gadgets

Linda with her gadgets in the studio.
Credit Paul Leary

12/06/12 - Join us for Thursday’s Topical Currents and Linda Gassenheimer’s Annual Holiday Kitchen Gadget extravaganza with wine columnist Fred Tasker.  How about a battery-operated vacuum chip and cracker storage container?  Contents stay crisp for months.  Linda demonstrates the ultimate double-edged bread knife, as well as a unique flippable omelet pan.  Fred has gadgets for the wine devotee.

Short video behind the scenes from today's program.  

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Tue December 4, 2012

Socio-biologist Rebecca Costa Addresses Global Gridlock in The Watchman’s Rattle

The Watchman's Rattle: A Radical New Theory of Collapse
http://www.rebeccacosta.com/

12/04/12 - Tuesday's Topical Currents is with socio-biologist Rebecca Costa.  She offers a “genetic” explanation for currents events . . . emerging trends . . . and individual behavior.   Costa retired at the zenith of her Silicon Valley career to write her book, THE WATCHMAN’S RATTLE:  A Radical New Theory of Collapse.  She says the principles governing evolution cause and provide a solution for global gridlock.

 

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Mon December 3, 2012

Unaccountable: What Hospitals Won’t Tell You

Unaccountable
http://www.facebook.com/UnaccountableBook

12/03/12 - Monday’s Topical Currents is with whistle-blower surgeon and Johns Hopkins Professor Dr. Marty Makary.  He’s an international expert on patient safety, who laments the corporatized hospital culture.   25% of all hospital patients are harmed by medical mistakes.  He says these blunders are due to blind focus on the proverbial “bottom line.”  He’s written UNACCOUNTABLE:  What Hospitals Won’t Tell You.

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Food and Dining
1:30 pm
Thu November 29, 2012

Josh Schonwald, author of The Taste of Tomorrow: Dispatches from the Future of Food

The Taste of Tomorrow: Dispatches from the Future of Food
http://www.thetasteoftomorrow.com/

Syndicated food columnist Linda Gassenheimer, Special wine correspondent Fred Tasker and WLRN hosts Joseph Cooper and Bonnie Berman interview Josh Schonwald, author of The Taste of Tomorrow:  Dispatches from the Future of Food.  What will we be eating, say, in 2035: test tube meat, stem cell burgers, blue bananas? 

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Thu November 29, 2012

Naturopathic Physician Michael Murray

Michael T. Murray, N.D
http://doctormurray.com

11/29/12 - Thursday's Topical Currents begins with naturopathic physician Michael Murray author of WHAT DRUG COMPANIES WON’T TELL YOU And your Doctor Doesn’t Know.   He discusses alternative treatments for the drugs which may be in our home medicine cabinets.   Murray says headache remedies can worsen symptoms . . . and that antacids can create digestive problems.  And more.  Linda Gassenheimer with Josh Schonwald, author of The Taste of Tomorrow:  Dispatches from the Future of Food.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Wed November 28, 2012

South Florida Post-Election Issues

11/28/12 - Wednesday's Topical Currents is with regular contributor and Watchdog Report publisher Dan Ricker.  We’ll follow up with South Florida election ramifications . . . and of course, take your calls.  Is the large Miami-Dade Cuban-American vote now swinging to Democrats?  And what effect will charter-enacted County Commission term limits foretell?  We’ll also check up on post-election Broward County politics and government.   http://www.watchdogreport.net/

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