Here & Now

Monday - Thursday, 10:00 a.m. - noon, Friday, 10:00 a.m - 11:00 a.m. on KUOW | Monday - Thursday, noon - 1:00 p.m. on KUOW2

Here! Now! In the moment! Paddling in the middle of a fast moving stream of news and information, Here & Now is public radio's daily news magazine.

For generations, the women in writer Alice Randall‘s family, including Alice, topped two hundred pounds.

As she wrote in a 2012 New York Times Op-ed, and now in a new cookbook, being heavy was something to aspire to.

Singapore Mourns Death Of Founder

Mar 23, 2015

Singapore’s longtime leader, Lee Kuan Yew, is dead.

The country is mourning with raw emotion and a blanket of relentlessly positive coverage on its tightly scripted state television today.

The government announced that Lee, 91, died several hours before dawn at Singapore General Hospital. He was hospitalized in early February with severe pneumonia.

State TV broke away from its regular programming with a rolling hagiographic tribute to Lee’s life and achievements.

Tax season has arrived and so have some headaches, especially for people who use the do-it-yourself online filing service Turbo Tax.

The company is dealing with a surge in fraudulent filings, and last week the IRS announced it would work with state tax authorities and private companies, like Turbo Tax, to reduce fraud.

In our weekly installment, we take a look at how the news is filtering through social media.

P. Kim Bui, West Coast producer for, joins Here & Now’s Robin Young to discuss three major news stories: the mysterious death of Otis Byrd, who was found hanging from a tree in Mississippi, the arrests of opposition figures in Malaysia and the funeral of a woman who was beaten to death for allegedly burning the Qur’an in Afghanistan.

Curtain Closes On 'Kroll Show'

Mar 23, 2015

With memorable characters like Bobby Bottleservice, Ref Jeff and C-Czar, ‘Kroll Show‘ attracted a devoted following of fans on Comedy Central.

“I think the characters that I enjoy playing are the ones that I can access something truthful and real in my own life, even though they themselves are very heightened archetypes of people,” the show’s creator Nick Kroll told Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson.

This week the show ends its three-year run.

Detroit is seeing more private investment in its downtown areas. New restaurants, bars, and boutiques are opening. Some of the city’s tallest buildings are being renovated after being empty for decades.

But some residents in the neighborhoods don't see how they're benefiting from renewed investor interest in Detroit.

From the Here & Now Contributor Network, Michigan Radio’s Lester Graham reports.

Yemen On The Edge Of Civil War

Mar 23, 2015

The U.N. special envoy for Yemen says the country appears to be on the edge of a “civil war.” With the so-called Islamic State’s rising influence, as well as ongoing destabilization from Yemen’s Al-Qaeda branch and the Shiite rebel group, the Houthis, hopes for the country are growing dim.

Here & Now’s Robin Young speaks with security expert Bruce Hoffman for his take on the situation in Yemen.

'News Dissector' Danny Schechter Dies

Mar 20, 2015

Journalist, activist, music and television producer Danny Schechter died yesterday at the age of 72 of pancreatic cancer.

He was one of the early voices heard on Boston’s big rock and counter-culture radio station, WBCN in the 1970s. He was known at the time as “The News Dissector.”

Schecter became active in the anti-apartheid movement and in the 1980s, and produced an album with musician Steven Van Zandt (of the E Street Band) called “Sun City,” which became an icon of the movement against apartheid.

There are more than 300 specialty plates in Texas, paying tribute to things like wild turkeys, Dr. Pepper and the fight against terrorism.

But when one group submitted a plate design with their logo — a Confederate flag — it was rejected by Texas officials. On Monday, the constitutionality of that rejection will be considered by the Supreme Court.

At issue is whether the license plates constitute government speech or an individual’s private speech.

Local Sports Become Lucrative Market

Mar 20, 2015

If you’ve been watching March Madness, you’ve probably been watching on CBS, TNT, TBS or Tru-TV. Those networks have the TV rights to the games until 2024.

But if you’re a local sports fan, chances are you do a lot of your sports TV viewing on regional sports networks.

Those networks have become an important source of revenue for the teams whose games they broadcast, and if you pay for cable — you’re probably paying more for your regional sports network than almost any other channel.

Baghdad’s neighborhoods are home to increasing numbers of people who have fled areas controlled by the so-called Islamic State militants.

Many of those displaced come from Anbar province, west of Baghdad. They need aid, and it’s a struggle for the government and international community to get it to them, as the BBC’s Ahmed Maher reports from Baghdad.

The Week In 2016 Politics

Mar 20, 2015

This afternoon, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul hosts his first event in New Hampshire since indicating that he’ll announce his run for President in 2016.

And in Iowa, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker is under scrutiny for his handling of a controversial tweet by a staffer, who insulted Iowa politics on Twitter and has since resigned.

Federal and state authorities are investigating the hanging death of a black man in Claiborne County, Mississippi.

The investigation involves the FBI, the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division and the United States attorney’s office. The Mississippi Bureau of Investigation is also involved.

An FBI official says the cause of death has not been determined, and authorities aren’t sure if it was a homicide or a suicide.

Top leaders of the European Union emerged from a meeting with the Greek prime minister early today telling him much what they have for weeks: Come up with a reform plan if you want more money to stay solvent. And do it fast.

The EU leaders said Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras committed to providing a list of specific reforms in the coming days that would improve his country’s balance sheet. Tsipras, however, said he had not committed to “recessionary measures” that would worsen the plight of his people.

The Long Reach Of The Snowmobile

Mar 20, 2015

In recent years, snowmobiling in Vermont has been on the decline — despite an extensive system of trails that stretches the entire length of the state and into other regions of New England, even into Canada.

Warmer winters and the high cost of gasoline have been cited for the decline. But this winter, there has been plenty of snow and gas is a bit cheap compared to last year.

Reporter Jon Kalish got on a souped-up sled and lived to tell the tale.