No longer on air.

The Conversation covers current events in politics, public affairs, culture and science. Host Ross Reynolds opens the phone for listeners to participate in spirited discussions on the issues of the day. 

Twitter: KUOWRoss | Facebook: KUOWRoss

To find stories by The Conversation older than October 15, 2012, go to and select "The Conversation" from the show dropdown menu in the search function.

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12:20 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

Venture Capitalists Nick Hanauer And Richard Barton

Richard Barton (left) and Nick Hanauer aren't afraid of risks.
LinkedIn profile photos

Ross Reynolds interviews two prominent Seattle investors about business and politics.  Nick Hanauer was the first non-family investor in Amazon.  He’s currently a venture capitalist with Second Avenue Partners and a major Democratic donor and activist involved with a variety of causes.  Richard Barton is a former Microsoft executive and the founder of the travel website Expedia and the real estate site Zillow.  He also supports a number of philanthropic causes, in part through the Barton Family Foundation.  

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12:10 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

Senator Patty Murray On The Fiscal Cliff

Senator Patty Murray speaking at Bellevue Community College, October 2012.
US Department of Labor Flickr

In the other Washington, lawmakers are still trying to reach a deal to avoid the "fiscal cliff," a series of sharp tax increases and spending cuts taking effect January 1. House Speaker John Boehner and President Obama spoke on the phone yesterday, a day after the president offered to reduce his initial demand for $1.6 trillion in higher tax revenue over a decade to $1.4 trillion.

Obama wants much of the revenue to come from raising tax rates on the wealthy. House Speaker John Boehner has accused the White House of stalling the negotiations. Central to a final settlement is Washington’s senior senator, Patty Murray. Ross Reynolds speaks with Senator Patty Murray about the looming fiscal cliff.

Author Interview
12:02 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

Nassim Nicholas Taleb On "Antifragile"

Cover of 'Antifragile' by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

How do we deal with uncertainty and chaos? Ross Reynolds sits down with Nassim Nicholas Taleb and explores the concept of "Antifragile" and what can be gained from disorder. 

10:05 am
Wed December 12, 2012

I Can't Believe It's Pot Butter

Yesterday on The Conversation with Ross Reynolds we heard from local chefs about how to incorporate marijuana into your cooking. James Beard Award-winning local chef Maria Hines told Ross how she likes to use cannabis-infused butter.

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12:40 pm
Tue December 11, 2012

Cooking With Cannabis: Stirring The Pot

Boiling "budder" (marijuana butter) to make candy.
Sioen Roux Flickr

Marijuana is now legal in Washington state. How do you cook with it? Ross Reynolds interviews the James Beard Award-winner and Top Chef Masters contestant Maria Hines, former Top Chef contestant Laurent Quenioux, edibles maker Justin Branstad, and other special guests.

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12:20 pm
Tue December 11, 2012

Please Remove Your Shoes And Jacket - The 411 On Airport Screening

How was your last trip through airport security?
Credit Flickr/25kim

Last year more than 32 million passengers passed through Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, and as this holiday season gears up we will see a bump in travel as people fly to see friends and family. So, more than 10 years after 9/11 how safe are our airports, what is the latest with the TSA. Ross Reynolds talks with Errol Southers, the associate director at the Center for Risk and Economic Analysis of Terrorism Events and a professor at the University of Southern California about the ins and outs of airport security.

Home Safety
12:10 pm
Tue December 11, 2012

Don't Be Alarmed! Carbon Monoxide Detectors Required

A new state law will go into effect January 1st requiring households in Washington to be equipped with carbon monoxide detectors. Who actually needs to buy one? If you need one, where can you get it? Ross Reynolds talks with Seattle Fire Department’s education specialist Dana Catts.

11:56 am
Mon December 10, 2012

State Auditor Brian Sonntag: An Exit Interview

State Auditor Brian Sonntag’s performance audits have pointed out how government agencies could save money and avoid fraud. Sonntag leaves office next month and he sits down with Ross Reynolds for a discussion about what he was and wasn't able to accomplish as the Washington state auditor.

Clean Water
11:54 am
Mon December 10, 2012

Eric Stowe Strives To Make A Splash In China With Clean Water

Splash installed a water system so these students at Dung Liet Primary School in Vietnam could have access to affordable, clean water.
Eric Stowe Splash

Eric Stowe’s Seattle-based nonprofit Splash works to provide clean water to children in China and the developing world. Ross Reynolds talks with Eric Stowe about how he got involved in clean water and the struggles he faces in his work .

Washington State Budget
12:16 pm
Fri December 7, 2012

What The Fiscal Cliff Means For Washington State

A fiscal cliff diver.

"We're building a budget assuming everybody works their problems out in the best interest of the nation." That's how Stan Marshburn, outgoing director of Washington State's Office of Financial Management is planning for the fiscal cliff.

He says we're likely to suffer either way. If we go over the cliff, we can expect 50 percent cut to state military spending. To avoid the cliff, federal lawmakers might agree to reduce Medicaid spending -- another precious source of federal money.

Marshburn tells Ross his biggest concern is consumer confidence, since Washington gets so much of its money from sales tax.  He says reduced consumer spending could impact Washington's economy 10 times more than the actual fiscal cliff itself.

Listener Call-In
12:02 pm
Fri December 7, 2012

Marijuana Is Legal In Washington: Do You Plan On Sparking Up?

Flickr Photo/prensa4 (CC-BY-NC-ND)

It’s now legal to possess marijuana in Washington state. What’s that mean for you? Ross Reynolds tries to shed light on the logistics of the law and hears from listeners.

Bird Watching
11:59 am
Fri December 7, 2012

What Are Snowy Owls Doing In Seattle?

Snowy owls are back! Several of the arctic birds have been spotted around the region recently, including in Seattle and Everett. It's typical for snowy owls to arrive in the US every three or four winters, but last year the number of the birds erupted.
Pat Gaines Flickr

Coming up on The Conversation, December 7 at noon.

December 14 kicks of the annual Audubon Christmas Bird Count and volunteers that have dubbed themselves as the Binocular Brigade are hoping to see some rare species. Here in Seattle there have been reports of snowy owl sightings. What is this large white owl doing here in Washington? Ross Reynolds talks with Seattle Audubon Conservation Director Matt Mega.

11:56 am
Thu December 6, 2012

Same-Sex Marriage Is Legal In Washington - Are You Getting Married Now?

A display of wedding cake toppers featuring same-sex couples.
Credit Flickr/Archie McPhee Seattle


As of 12:00 a.m. this morning, same-sex marriage is legal in Washington state. Ross Reynolds hears from listeners who have decided to marry now that they can.

11:47 am
Thu December 6, 2012

King County Metro General Manager Kevin Desmond On Rapid Ride And More

On September 29, King County Metro ended the Ride Free Area in downtown Seattle. A 2010 study conducted by Metro estimated that of the 8 million riders boarding buses each year almost 35 percent did not have a pass or transfer. This was costing the agency $2 million annually. In the last few months, what changes have you seen in revenues and ridership since the end of the Free Ride Area? Ross Reynolds talks with King County Metro General Manager Kevin Desmond about these changes and more.

Same-Sex Marriage
9:42 am
Thu December 6, 2012

Dan Savage On Marriage

Dan Savage speaking at Western University, March 2012.
Flickr/Better Than Bacon

Dan Savage is a sex columnist, author, advocate and more.  He is behind the It Gets Better project, an archive of hopeful videos aimed at troubled gay youth, and the author of "The Commitment: Love, Sex, Marriage and My Family." Savage talks to Ross Reynolds about marriage and what he plans to do now that same-sex marriage is legal in Washington state.

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