Previously on Forum

company sign in front of google headquarters

The violent rally in Charlottesville increased attention to organized racism and has pushed some tech companies including GoDaddy and Google to sever business ties with hate groups. But defenders of online free speech, including the Electronic Frontier Foundation, urge caution in ostracizing political groups, saying it’s a slippery slope toward policing online speech and that companies dealing with internet infrastructure must remain neutral.  We’ll look at the debate over how businesses should respond to clients whose views they renounce and what moral obligations, if any, businesses have.

Hannah Kuchler, tech reporter, Financial Times
Cindy Cohn, executive director, Electronic Frontier Foundation
Jonathan Vick, associate director for cyberhate response, Anti-Defamation League

A Ford GoBike is displayed at the Ford booth at CES 2017 at the Las Vegas Convention Center on January 5, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

If it seems like the Bay Area suddenly has a plethora of bike sharing options, it’s because it does. Several companies such as Ford GoBike, LimeBike and Spin are each looking to make a mark in the region’s bike-friendly culture. Ford GoBike, which utilizes docking stations where bikes are parked between uses, plans to expand its existing 700-bike program to 7000 bikes. Other cities like South San Francisco and Mountain View have made deals with stationless bike sharing companies, which allow riders more flexibility but risk bikes being left in random spots. Both types of companies have faced pushback: In San Francisco’s Mission District, the neighborhood council banned a GoBike station from 24th Street and bikes have been vandalized throughout the Bay Area. San Francisco, which like other cities has a controversial exclusivity contract with GoBike, has yet to approve permit requests for several stationless bike share companies. In this segment we’ll take a look at how the bike share turf wars are helping and hurting the Bay Area.

Dan Brekke, editor and reporter, KQED News

Emily Stapleton, general manager, Ford GoBike

More Information:
Bike Sharing Battles: Startups Pioneering a New Breed of Bike Borrowing Fight for Market Share (Mercury News)

A SMART train engine drives on tracks.

The Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit, or SMART Train, will begin full passenger service Friday morning, nine years after voters approved a sales tax to fund the project. The 10-stop train will carry commuters between the Sonoma County Airport in Santa Rosa and downtown San Rafael for fares ranging from $3.50 to $11.50. Plans to enlarge the 43-mile line are already underway and include a 2.1-mile extension from San Rafael to the Larkspur Landing ferry terminal. We discuss what’s in store for SMART train riders and the system’s impact on the North Bay. And we would like to hear from you — do you plan on using the SMART train? Why or why not? If you’ve taken a trial ride with SMART train, what did you think?

Farhad Mansourian, general manager, Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit (SMART)
Dan Brekke, editor and reporter, KQED News

U.S. President Donald Trump delivers remarks on Americas military involvement in Afghanistan at the Fort Myer military base on August 21, 2017 in Arlington, Virginia. Trump was expected to announce a modest increase in troop levels in Afghanistan, the result of a growing concern by the Pentagon over setbacks on the battlefield for the Afghan military against Taliban and al-Qaeda forces. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

From Steve Bannon’s departure to President Trump’s Monday evening announcement about the war in Afghanistan, there’s a lot of news coming out of Washington. And things haven’t been quiet in Sacramento either: With the state legislature back in session, California’s GOP Assembly leader Chad Mayes is facing a bid to oust him after he supported Democratic climate legislation. In this hour of Forum, we discuss the latest political news, from Sacramento to D.C.

Callum Borchers,
politics and media reporter, the Washington Post
Marisa Lagos, reporter, KQED’s California Politics and Government Desk
Jon Fasman, Washington correspondent, The Economist

Related Links:

If you compulsively refresh your news feeds, check your Facebook likes or maintain Snapstreaks, it’s probably not your fault. According to design ethicist Tristan Harris, today’s smartphones and apps are deliberately designed to interrupt your thoughts, redirect your attention and keep you scrolling for as long as possible. Harris joins Forum to talk about how a handful of tech companies are steering the thoughts of billions, and how consumers can liberate themselves from their phones.

Tristan Harris,
design thinker; co-founder, Time Well Spent

Jared Huffman represents California's 2nd district.

As part of Forum’s series featuring Bay Area members of Congress, Jared Huffman, who represents California’s 2nd district along the northern coast, joins us in-studio to discuss his legislative priorities, the latest news from Washington and what’s next for the Affordable Care Act. We’ll also hear about the former environmental lawyer’s legislative proposals involving climate regulation and public land protections.

Congressman Adam Schiff poses for a portrait.

Southern California Congressman Adam Schiff joins Forum to discuss the fallout over President Trump’s response to last weekend’s violence in Charlottesville and talk about the latest news out of Capitol Hill. We’ll also ask the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee about the ongoing investigation into ties between the Trump campaign and Russia.

Adam Schiff,
Congressman representing California’s 28th District

A small group of white nationalists, neo-Nazis and members of the 'alt-right' face off with Virginia State Police in front of the statue of General Robert E. Lee after the 'Unite the Right' rally was declared an unlawful gathering August 12, 2017 in Charlottesville, Virginia. After clashes with anti-fascist protesters and police the rally was declared an unlawful gathering and people were forced out of Emancipation Park, where a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee is slated to be removed

The far right-wing group Patriot Prayer hopes to stage a rally at San Francisco’s Crissy Field on August 26, an event that is expected to draw armed sympathizers and white supremacists. Fearing violence, state and city lawmakers have called on on the National Park Service to rescind the group’s permit. We discuss how San Francisco and other cities are preparing for rallies by far right wing and white nationalist groups, and how citizens, civil rights groups and counterprosters are planning to respond.

Seth Brysk,
central pacific regional director, Anti-Defamation League
Jim Dudley, retired deputy chief of patrol, San Francisco Police Department; co-host of “Policing Matters” podcast
John Sepulvado, host, The California Report
Karissa Lewis, executive director, Center for Third World Organizing; member of the BlackOUT Collective and Black Lives Matter

Diamond Jim poses in front of a car.

When Pendarvis Harshaw was growing up in Oakland, he and his friends looked up to the “OGs” – the older black men known as “original gangstas.” He started asking them, “What advice do you have for young black men like me?”  Harshaw would walk up to anyone who caught his eye – domino players, businessmen, shoe shiners – and get their advice on everything from women to education. Harshaw gathered all that wisdom in a website and book, “OG Told Me.” Harshaw joins us in the studio to talk about the project and share what he learned.

Pendarvis “Pen” Harshaw,
journalist; author, “OG Told Me”

More Information:
OG Told Me

ingredients on a wooden table

Chef Daniel Patterson and perfumer Mandy Aftel join us to talk about “The Art of Flavor,” their new book that explains how ingredients can be manipulated to create tastes that are greater than the sum of their parts. The book outlines four basic rules that drive flavor and “seven dials” that can be tweaked for fine-tuning. From roasted carrots with curry and lime to chocolate pots de creme with ginger and rose-cardamom, Patterson and Aftel share their secrets to enhancing flavor and creating new dishes.


Mandy Aftel, perfumer and owner of Aftelier Perfumes; co-author, “The Art of Flavor”; author, “Fragrant: The Secret Life of Scent”

Daniel Patterson, chef and owner, Coi; co-author of “The Art of Flavor”

An exterior of the state capitol is shown on January 5, 2006 in Sacramento, California.

With democratic supermajorities in both wings of the state legislature, California has strengthened its role as a leader in progressive policy, pushing back against the Trump administration on issues like immigration and climate change. But a hotly-contested election for the chair of California’s Democratic Party has led to infighting between longtime California democrats and a more progressive, Bernie Sanders-influenced wing. In this hour of Forum, we look at divisions within the state’s Democratic Party and explore how it might reflect a schism at the national level.

Marisa Lagos,
reporter, KQED’s California Politics and Government Desk
Katie Merrill, partner, BaughmanMerrill
Christine Pelosi, chair, California Democratic Party Women’s Caucus

The New York Times reports that the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, Scott Pruitt, has been taking “extraordinary measures to conceal his actions” as he quietly works to roll back Obama-era regulations. According to EPA employees who requested anonymity, Pruitt’s team asked employees not to keep records of changes they were ordered to make on a water quality rule and have removed over 1,900 agency webpages on items like climate change. The New York Times’ Eric Lipton joins us to discuss his reporting and the current state of the EPA.


Eric Lipton, reporter, The New York Times

Scott Pruitt Is Carrying Out His E.P.A. Agenda in Secret, Critics Say (New York Times)

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