Bruce Robinson

Radio News Director & On Air Host

Bruce Robinson is KRCB-FM News Director and host of Flashback, heard Fridays at 7pm. Bruce can be reached at (707) 584-2012, or email bruce_robinson@krcb.org

Ways to Connect

  

It’s true:  Big Brother IS watching us. And listening, and reading our emails and more, while we are making it easier for our data to be captured and sold.

The ever-expanding corporate and governmental intrusion into private personal communications and activities should be of concern to everyone, contends cyber security analyst Bill Blunden. It’s not whether or not one has something to hide, but a matter of protecting vital Constitutional rights.

Bodega Bay’s beleaguered salmon fishery will get a boost from the release of thousands of smolts there this spring. But the fishermen will have to wait another two years for the fish to grow, mature and return before they can be caught.

In the past five years, one Bay Area city has placed a soda tax measure before its voters, passed a strong rent control measure, and rejected a big-money city council campaign from its biggest employer. And no, it wasn’t Berkeley.

The notable misstep by the Richmond Progressive Alliance, says writer Steve Early, was their backing of a hotly contested soda tax on the city’s ballot in 2012, a defeat that took down their two candidates as well.

Some of the young people who most need mental health services have been conditioned to avoid them. A new youth-led initiative hopes to use peer outreach to overcome that.

This new collaboration, says VOICES Director Amber Twitchell, is especially timely, as the need for these services continues to mount.

VOICES—an acronym for the organization’s founding name  “Voice Our Independent Choices for Emancipation Support” –is more than 10 years old now. In that time it has welcomed and served hundreds of transition youth, and Twitchell says most of them have stayed in touch.

California’s major public institutions would be required to weigh greenhouse gas emissions into their budget analyses when purchasing materials for large infrastructure projects, under a proposed new bill unveiled this week.

Ann Hancock, Executive Director of the Center for Climate Protection in Santa Rosa, Was cheered by the proposed legislation's approach, and its intent to include transportation costs in the assessments to be required.

Once prolific in San Francisco Bay, but now scarce, Olympia oysters are getting some human help in building new reefs—and helping their benefactors, too.

Linda Hutner, Executive Director of The Wild Oyster Project in San Francisco, says this area is following in the footsteps of other like-minded efforts elsewhere.

A call to radically rethink how homeless services are structured and provided locally found a generally receptive audience in Santa Rosa this week.  Now the challenge is to implement those ideas.

The Homeless Solutions Summit was well attended by a full spectrum of people concerned about homelessness in Sonoma County. Jennielynn Holmes of Catholic Charities says she thinks the event will mobilize changes.

To cure homelessness, give priority to the most challenging individuals. That radical rethinking of the issue served as the starting point for the two-day Summit on Homeless Solutions that began Monday  in Santa Rosa.

 Using a triage process--similar to that employed in a hospital's emergency room-- to determine who among the homeless is in the greatest need may seem like a resource-intensive approach.  And in some ways it is. But in the big picture, says Iain De Jong, it is also surprisingly cost-effective.

George Lakoff is a founder of the science of cognitive linguistics—how language functions within our brains. Understanding that led him to predict the election of Donald Trump last summer—and now to offer ideas on how to process and debate what the new president says.

Hardly anyone is entirely conservative or progressive in their worldview, Lakoff says, but repeated exposure to messages of one type of the other can and does shift the balance within individuals over time.

The fatal shooting of 13 year old Andy Lopez was shocking and polarizing. But documentary filmmaker Ron Rogers is more interested in what has happened in the neighborhood afterward.

When an editor comes on board to help complete the “Andy” film project, producer Ron Rogers says he or she will have plenty to work with.

Fifteen years ago, the idea of a free, digital encyclopedia, compiled and edited almost entirely by volunteers, and available at no cost to everyone, seemed like an idealistic fantasy. Today, Wikipedia offers millions of articles in hundreds of languages, and continues to grow every day. And it is easier than you might think to contribute to that growth.

Although tens of thousands of editors have added to Wikipedia, some are far more prolific than others. By his own reckoning, Winsdor’s John Broughton is among the more active contributors.

Bruce Robinson, KRCB

The thousands of marchers who filled the streets of downtown Santa Rosa early Saturday afternoon were there in common cause—but for a multitude of individual reasons.

Historian Kevin Starr, known for his 8-volume chronicle of the state of California, died last weekend. One of his last books was a short but comprehensive history of the Golden Gate Bridge, which he discussed in this archival North Bay Report from the summer of 2010.

As a native San Franciscan, Kevin Starr spent most of his life within sight of the Golden Gate Bridge, and saw it from just about every possible perspective, even from below while swimming beneath the span. But there is one vantage point he never tried.

Surrounded by thousands of years of native history, the burned out ruins of a 196os commune in northern Marin County have yielded an unexpected glimpse into the details of “hippie” life  from that era.

While the extensive and varied collection of damaged vinyl records was perhaps the most interesting thing he found in the wreckage of the Burdell Mansion, State Parks archeologist Breck Parkman says there were some other things that were more surprising.

A Life in Animation

Jan 16, 2017

Back in 1965 and 66, there was a Saturday morning kids show watched by up to 2/3s of the televisions in America. It was the Beatles Cartoons, which Australian animator Ron Campbell helped create-- among many other shows, before and since.

The Yellow Submarine film is known, among other things, for its bright palette of colors. But animator Ron Campbell says his contributions to the landmark movie were all done in basic black and white, with the colors added by others later in the process.

Staff reductions, failed computer systems, funding cuts and unpopular spending priorities have all contributed to some serious morale problems for the workers in Sonoma County’s Superior court system. They are also impeding negotiations for a new contract.

Court reporter Carlos Martinez, speaking on behalf of his co-workers, says they question the budgetary priorities of the court’s administration.

He points to a failed, costly computer service program as another misplaced priority.

Sonoma County Regional Parks

Even before the latest series of cold and wet winter storms raked the North Bay, some 1000 homeless people were living outdoors in the elements across Sonoma County. And service providers have been able to offer little more to help them as the weather worsened.

Highway 101 overpasses near downtown Santa Rosa. That has upset nearby homeowners and residents, which is understandable, says Heidi Prottas, Executive Director of the Sonoma County Task Force for the Homeless. But the homeless there have no other options.

Bruce Robinson, KRCB

Even before the November election, Donald Trump’s presidential campaign generated scores of worried conversations among the Latino workforce in Sonoma County. In a sober press conference Tuesday morning at the Graton Day Labor Center, they shared their conclusions.

Jackie Sones

Bottlenose dolphins have become increasingly frequent visitors along the north coast, as their range and numbers appear to be expanding.

The first bottlenose dolphin was spotted in San Francisco Bay more than 15 years ago, but Bill Keener of Golden Gate Cetacean Research it took them some time to begin venturing farther northward.

Marin County artist Tom Killion has spent his life applying Japanese woodcut printmaking techniques to his views the region’s landscapes. Now he has received that county’s highest honor for his works.

Tamalpais Walking--first published in 2007 and reissued as a paperback in 2013 -- is the most recent in a series of collaborations between Killion and poet Gary Snyder. Their previous joint effort was The High Sierra of California in 2002.

According to a recent study, Latinos trail other segments of the California population in understanding mental illnesses and how they can be treated. But the gap closes as they become acculturated.

Naranjo’s study interviewed 100 subjects, statewide, during the summer of 2014. She explains that her survey asked a series of questions to gauge each person’s awareness and understanding of mental illnesses and their symptoms and treatments.

A scholarship program that works specifically with undocumented students who want to attend college has added Sonoma State University to its list of partner schools in California.

Find out more about the Dream.US scholarship program on their website.

Dragonflies aren’t just old—they date back to the age of the dinosaurs—they’re strange.  Also colorful, pest-eating, non-threatening to humans, and still surprisingly unstudied.

Among all the strange and unusual things that have been learned about Dragonflies, there is one that stands out above everything else, says Kathy Biggs:  their mating practices.

All around us, there are edible plants, growing wild. The trick is knowing which ones they are, where to find them, and how best to make use of them.  On today’s North Bay Report, we hear from someone who not only knows all that, she wrote the book on it.

  For Margit Roos-Collins, foraging has been a part of her lifestyle since childhood, a sort of family tradition.

OutToProtect.org

  Police and Sherriff’s departments in California and beyond have long included gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender officers. But now those individuals are increasingly willing and able to let their presence be known, some with the help of a local writer and instructor.

  The Rolling Stones’ infamous 1969 free concert at the Altamont speedway has become mythologized as “the end of the 60s,” a symbolic counterweight to the romanticized images of peace, love and Woodstock. But a detailed new book from veteran San Francisco music writer Joel Selvin shows that the full story of the event is much more complicated.

 

   Is it possible to fight poverty and climate change at the same time? The answer is emphatically yes, and Rocky Rohwedder has examples to prove it.

  Rohwedder, who has now retired from his position at Sonoma State, found some important allies in his Ecological Handprints project. One was South African Bishop Desmond Tutu, who wrote an introduction for the book. Others included top-flight photographers who donated their images.

Thanks to the passage of Proposition 64, it is now legal to grow, possess or transport small amounts of marijuana. But the measure also can roll back the convictions of people who were jailed for doing those things before November 9th,  a process that is now getting started.

Santa Rosa attorney Joe Rogoway has discovered that in some cases, old efforts to minimize the legal consequences of past marijuana law violations have now complicated the new process of getting those old convictions undone.

History Museum of Sonoma County

As the 50th anniversary of San Francisco's “Summer of Love” approaches, a new exhibit at the Sonoma County Museum examines that how era played out in the North Bay.

The North Bay was a low-key, out-of-town "incubator" for musicians from the San Francisco scene, observes Eric Stanley, curator for the History Museum of Sonoma  County.

The process of setting up a new composting operation in Sonoma is finally taking its first steps. But in the meantime, both residents and compost users are paying significantly more.

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