Current State

9AM and 6PM Weekdays on 90.5 FM | noon on AM870

Mid-Michigan's news destination for the informed, the caring and the curious. News and issues, arts and attitudes, and the personalities that make the heart of Michigan beat.

Also be sure to visit Current State Weekend with host Emanuele Berry, where she features Current State reports from throughout the week, plus timely segments focused on arts and culture.

@KARCurrentState

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:59 pm
Tue September 10, 2013

Great Lakes Week conference stresses lake level, watershed access

One of the topics under discussion at the Great Lakes Conference was that of Waukesha, Wisconsin, a city outside of the Great Lakes basin that says they need water diverted from the lakes because their wells are contaminated by radium.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

    

Organizations from across the Great Lakes region are converging in Milwaukee for Great Lakes Week. Great Lakes journalist and commentator Gary Wilson is at this year’s conference. Wilson says two of the major issues are low lake levels and water divergence.

 

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:57 pm
Tue September 10, 2013

Michigan business spokesman shares fears on ACA

 

Michigan business owners continue efforts to understand their responsibilities ahead of the launch of the Federal Affordable Care Act.  A few weeks ago, Current State spoke with Rob Fowler, CEO of the Small Business Association of Michigan, who talked about the challenges business owners are facing.  He said many of his members are struggling.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:48 pm
Tue September 10, 2013

Remembering the American victory at the Battle of Lake Erie

A huge boat building effort was made in Detroit before the Battle of Lake Erie, according to MSU historian Roger Rosentreter.
Credit dartmouth.edu

 

For the United States, the War of 1812 took a turn for the better on this date 200 years ago. American naval forces defeated the British in The Battle of Lake Erie. The victory secured the lake and ensured that Michigan and Ohio would remain the sovereign territory of the U.S.A.

Current State’s Scott Pohl talked with MSU historian Roger Rosentreter about the Battle of Lake Erie.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:48 pm
Mon September 9, 2013

Current State #154 | September 9, 2013

Today on Current State: a discussion on civility versus academic freedom in the wake of the removal of MSU professor William Penn; the impact of the sequester on academic research funding; "Welcome to Flint" shows the beauty and tragedy of Flint in photos and Current Sports host Al Martin talks about the MSU Spartans' dull offense.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:47 pm
Mon September 9, 2013

MSU professor stresses importance of due process in Penn affair

The John A. Hannah Administration Building at Michigan State University.
Credit WKAR File Photo

Highly controversial comments made recently by a Michigan State University professor continue to be a topic of discussion both locally and beyond.  

Last week, creative writing professor William Penn sparked an intense backlash after a video surfaced of him suggesting Republicans had “raped the country” and included many closet racists.  A student attending the lecture told MLive.com that Penn also denigrated Christians and athletes.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:46 pm
Mon September 9, 2013

Photographers capture the beauty and the misery of Flint

Juan Madrid

Flint: the most violent city in the nation, a failed city, an urban wasteland.  These are the headlines that have defined Flint, but they don’t tell the whole story.

“Welcome to Flint,” is a collaborative project by photographers Juan Madrid and Brett Carlsen.

The two New York-based artists travel on and off to Michigan, trying to capture the city of Flint. Current State’s Emanuele Berry spoke to the pair about their project.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:46 pm
Mon September 9, 2013

Evidence of sequestration effects appears in MSU research labs

Recent reports indicate federal spending cuts are forcing some U.S. researchers to consider moving their projects overseas.
Credit WKAR File Photo

Last March, the federal government enacted an $85 billion spending cut known as the "sequester."  It's taken some time to assess the effects of these cuts, but as the federal fiscal year comes to a close on September 30, new budgets are reflecting spending decreases.

The cuts are having an effect on scientific research.  Reports have documented laboratory closings and layoffs, and one significant study showed one-fifth of U.S. scientists have contemplated moving overseas because of the decline in funding.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:45 pm
Mon September 9, 2013

MSU offense struggles to get going against South Florida

The season is still young, but so far, the Spartan defense is outperforming its offense when it comes to putting points on the scoreboard.
Credit WKAR File Photo

The Michigan State University Spartans clinched a 21 to 6 victory over the University of South Florida in East Lansing Saturday.  The MSU offense scored only one drive in the game; the rest of the scoring was handled by the defensive squad.  Mark Bashore talks with Current Sports host Al Martin about the game, which saw three different MSU quarterbacks turn in lackluster performances.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:44 pm
Fri September 6, 2013

Current State #153 | September 6, 2013

Today on Current State: China expert Tom Watkins on Gov. Rick Snyder's investment trip to Asia; Edgewood Village opens a new "network center;" author Gordon Young on his book "Teardown: Memoir of a Vanishing City;" a Dearborn Heights fast food restaurant bucks the minimum wage trend and a preview of the fall film season.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:43 pm
Fri September 6, 2013

China expert analyzes Snyder's foreign investment mission

Gov. Rick Snyder is on a nine-day foreign investment mission to China and Japan.
Credit Flickr/fritzmb

According to Governor Rick Snyder’s office, in 2012 Michigan companies exported 22 percent more goods and materials to China than during the previous year.  Chinese foreign investment reached $1 billion.

Such numbers make clear why Governor Snyder on Wednesday left for China and Japan on a nine-day investment mission. This is the governor’s third trip to Asia since taking office, illustrating his commitment to bringing more direct foreign investment into the state.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:42 pm
Fri September 6, 2013

Historic housing complex adds new 'network center'

Edgewood Village in East Lansing was founded more than 40 years ago to offer amenities not normally associated with public housing. Now, the facility is opening a new 'network center.'
Credit Courtesy Greater Lansing Housing Coalition

One of the Lansing area’s most historic and vital housing communities continues to evolve and grow, more than 40 years after it was conceived.

East Lansing’s Edgewood Village is the site of 135 apartments and townhouses for low and moderate-income residents, the physically impaired and the elderly.  It includes common areas, a computer lab---amenities and other services not often associated with low-income, publicly funded housing.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:42 pm
Fri September 6, 2013

'Teardown' author reflects on his work after Detroit bankruptcy

Gordon Young is the author of 'Teardown: Memoir of a Vanishing City.'
Credit WKAR File Photo

Back in June, we heard from author Gordon Young. His book about Flint, called “Teardown: Memoir of a Vanishing City,” had just been published. Gordon Young is back in East Lansing today to do a Brown Bag presentation for Our Daily Work, Our Daily Lives,  a multi-faceted project run by the Michigan Traditional Arts program at the MSU Museum, and by MSU’s School of Labor and Industrial Relations.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:41 pm
Fri September 6, 2013

'Moo Cluck Moo' bucks wage trend at $12 per hour

'Moo Cluck Moo' in Dearborn Heights starts its employees at $12 per hour. It's not precisely a living wage, but significantly higher than Michigan's minimum wage, which is $7.40 per hour.
Credit WKAR File Photo

Last week, thousands of fast food restaurant employees across the country walked out of their kitchens and into the streets to demand a living wage. They were demanding their companies pay them $15 per hour...well above the national average.  There were protests in several Michigan cities, including Detroit, Flint and Lansing.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:41 pm
Fri September 6, 2013

Fall films are a mix of flair and fizzle

Current State's Emanuele Berry chats with MLive film critic John Serba about this fall's movie crop.
Credit Flickr/Joe & Jeanette Archie

From tales of slavery to adventures in outer space, this year’s crop of fall films runs the gamut.  Current State’s Emanuele Berry chats with MLive.com entertainment reporter and film critic John Serba about the upcoming film season.  They started with a film neither is excited to see: a dance flick entitled “Battle of the Year.”

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:33 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

Current State #152 | September 5, 2013

Today on Current State: campaign helps Michigan residents understand Affordable Care Act; Detroit princess of 1800's; Michigan LGBT laws; and new exhibits at the Broad Art Museum.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:32 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

Campaign helps Michigan residents navigate Affordable Care Act

Erin Knott, State Director for Enroll America, said that their mission is to educate people, provide them with resources and then get them to commit to seriously looking into Affordable Care Act plans when they are available on October 1st.
Credit Wikimedia commons

Though the Michigan Senate may have delayed the expansion of Medicaid until likely the spring, the fast approaching date of October 1st still looms large. That’s when the new health insurance marketplaces, one of the key components of the Affordable Care Act, will open for enrollment.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:30 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

Detroit born princess considered Kim Kardashian of the 1800’s

Clara Ward was the daughter of Eber Ward, the first millionaire in Detroit.
Wikimedia Commons

Actress Grace Kelly was not the first American princess. In the late 19th century, young American heiresses exchanged their wealth for titles, marrying into the European elite. One such heiress was Clara Ward, who was born in Detroit in 1873. She married a Belgian Prince, becoming Princesse de Caraman-Chimay, but Clara’s story is no traditional fairy tale.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:29 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

Michigan advocates assess LGBT landscape

The city of East Lansing is considering the establishment of a domestic partnership registry to more formally acknowledge gay and lesbian couples.
Credit Wikimedia commons

Last week, the Internal Revenue Service announced that for taxation purposes, it would recognize all legally married couples, gay and straight.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:26 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

Hope Gangloff's portraits featured in Broad Art Museum

Alison Gass of the Broad Art Museum says the Gangloff works are kicking off a three-part series of exhibitions tying new works with others from the collection of the former Kresge Art Museum.
Credit Hope Gangloff

The Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University will open four new exhibitions this month, with artist Hope Gangloff launching the first on Friday.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:48 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Current State #151 | September 4, 2013

Today on Current State: Medicaid expansion in Michigan; Niowave redesigns controversial building; the impact of Ariel Castro's death on his victims; Public Poetry Announcement; aging out of foster care; and the Wharton Center's upcoming season. 

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:47 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Medicaid expansion goes to Governor as Feds consider waivers

Gov. Rick Snyder is expected to sign legislation the Medicaid expansion bill, though it was not given immediate effect.
Credit File photo/WKAR

Governor Rick Snyder says he looks forward to signing a Medicaid expansion bill when he returns in a couple of weeks from a trade mission to Asia. In the meantime, the state will continue to negotiate with the federal government on the program.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:45 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Walnut Neighborhood residents pleased with Niowave's final agreement on pole barn

Neighbors say they're satisfied with the revised look of the Niowave building.
Credit Courtesy/C2AE

The last year has been a trying one for Lansing’s Niowave Corporation and its residential neighbors in the area north of downtown. The Lansing Economic Area Partnership has spent months forging an agreement between the company and its neighbors over how to improve the appearance of a large metal building that went up  last summer.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:45 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Public Poetry Announcement: Brenda Shaughnessy

Credit Flickr/d'emploi

Brenda Shaughnessy's "Visitor" is the featured Public Poetry Announcement read by Current State contributor Stephanie Glazier.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:44 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

MSU expert weighs impact of Ariel Castro's death on victims

Ariel Castro held his captives in this Cleveland home.
Credit Flickr/mikelynaugh

Ariel Castro, the man who was recently convicted for holding three women captive in his Cleveland home for nearly a decade, was found hanged in his cell earlier today. Prison officials are calling it a suicide.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:37 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Neighbors in Action: Teens aging out of foster care face many challenges

Our Neighbors in Action series this week looks at social work professionals who help children who age out of the foster care system. St. Vincent Catholic Charities in Lansing offers a long term residential care program for children aged five to 17.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:36 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

Highlights of new Wharton Center season include 'Book of Mormon'

'The Book of Mormon' headlines the Wharton Center Broadway schedule in June of 2014. Mark Evans stars.
Credit Wharton Center/Joan Marcus

September brings the start of the season for many activities on the MSU campus, including events at the Wharton Center for Performing Arts

Current State's Peter Whorf checks in with Wharton executive director Mike Brand for a preview of the 2013-14 lineup.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:26 pm
Tue September 3, 2013

Current State #150 | September 3, 2013

 

Today on Current State: MSU professor on the conflict in Syria; Detroit’s Water Renaissance series; Right to Work after first Labor Day; Al Jazeera America launches Detroit bureau; and the HopCat bar in East Lansing.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:24 pm
Tue September 3, 2013

Few paths forward in Syria lead to desirable outcomes

According to MSU professor Mohammed Ayoob, there is no good path forward in Syria. The situation is very complex with more than one proxy war being fought.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

 More than 100,000 people have been killed and nearly a quarter of Syria’s population has been displaced since the uprising against President Bashar al Assad began in March 2011. 

While the Obama administration up until this point has largely avoided any direct involvement in the conflict, the administration claims an August 21 chemical weapons attack that left 1400 civilians dead was the work of Assad’s forces.  Calling the use of chemical weapons “a red line," President Obama has asked for Congressional approval for a U.S. military strike.  

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:19 pm
Tue September 3, 2013

Detroit’s Water Renaissance: New shorelines, old problems on the Detroit River

The Detroit River from the Refuge Gateway. This unassuming site has been reengineered from steel and cement to a 'soft' shore.
Credit Lewis Wallace

Water attracted early settlers to Detroit and water fueled its growth. Now it’s an important asset to the city’s recovery.

Today we continue to explore Detroit’s waterfront in our series "Detroit Water Renaissance."

Last week we looked at the unearthing of Detroit streams. For the second segment, reporter Lewis Wallace examines efforts to re-engineer the Detroit River’s concrete shoreline.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:06 pm
Tue September 3, 2013

Michigan’s first Labor Day after Right to Work legislation

Michigan was the 24th state in the country to enact right to work, amid protests. Some took place in Lansing last December at the Capitol building.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Yesterday was the first Labor Day in Michigan since Right to Work legislation was signed into law.

John Beck, associate director of the School of Human Resources and Labor Relations at MSU, joined Current State to talk about organized labor, especially post-Right To Work.

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