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1.

Genetics and Aging

Dean Hamer, Director of the Gene Structure and Regulation Unit at the National Cancer Institute, talks about the link between genetics and aging. Dr. Hamer focuses on some of the more serious problems associated with age, in particular, Alzheimer's Disease.
Online
2015; 2011
2.

Paying Down the National Debt

Director of the National Economic Council and former Secretary of the Treasury Lawrence Summers talks about the importance of paying down the debt, particularly because the United States is, ". . . a country that chronically under saves."
Online
2015; 2011
3.

Computers and Loss of Privacy- Isaac Asimov (I, Robot)

Author Isaac Asimov talks about the potential for loss of privacy in the age of computers. His greatest fear is that information could be misused to create a kind of tyranny on a grand and frightening scale.
Online
2015; 2011
4.

Suicide and Psychiatric Disorders

Professor of psychiatry and author Kay Redfield Jamison talks about the irrefutable link between psychiatric disorders and suicide, especially among young people.
Online
2015; 2011
5.

Acid Rain: Sources and Impact

Scientist and climate change expert Michael Oppenheimer discusses the causes and impact of acid rain. Oppenheimer states that the primary sources of acid rain are emissions of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides from electric power plants. The secondary source is nitrogen oxide emissions from automobiles. When acid rain falls in lakes and streams, it often changes the existing biology and, in some cases, virtually wipes out whatever life had been present.
Online
2015; 2011
6.

Family's Struggle, a

Dr. Ed McCabe, Chief of the Mattel Children's Hospital at UCLA, talks about the challenges faced by a Colorado family in which two children were afflicted by a serious genetic disorder.
Online
2015; 2011
7.

On the Road to Leadership

Management expert William G. Ouchi talks about the need to start on the road to leadership early in one's career.
Online
2015; 2011
8.

Role of DNA, the

Dean Hamer, Director of the Gene Structure and Regulation Unit at the National Cancer Institute, talks about the role of DNA in human behavior. Dr. Hamer explains that DNA is like ". . . a blueprint that determines not only our physical bodies, but also, at least in part, our brains."
Online
2015; 2011
9.

Philosophy of Ethics (Part One), the

Philosopher Stephen Toulmin argues that neither Immanuel Kant nor Jeremy Bentham believed that there's an absolute moral formula that can be applied in all cases.
Online
2015; 2011
10.

Gene Therapy (Part Two)

Professor of Law and Medicine Alex Capron talks about the danger in assuming that if we know an individual's genetic blueprint, we know the individual. He reminds us that, as important as genetic structure may be, ultimately the individual is the product of the interaction between that blueprint and the world. He also talks about the topic of genetic manipulation, questioning where do we stop, and how far do we go in, "...adding greater capabilities, making a person perform at the highest human level or even going beyond that?"
Online
2015; 2011
11.

Scientific Realism

Philosopher Hilary Putnam calls himself a scientific realist for a number of reasons, including his contention that there's no serious difference in the reality status of scientific objects and common sense objects. Even with respect to observability, Professor Putnam states that he doesn't believe there is a fundamental difference between observing something with the aid of an instrument and observing it solely with the eye.
Online
2015; 2011
12.

Early Evidence of Continental Drift

Geophysicist and geologist Tanya Atwater points to the jig-saw puzzle fit of Africa and South America as the most obvious evidence supporting the theory of continental drift.
Online
2015; 2011
13.

Manic Depressive Experiences in College and Beyond

Professor of psychiatry and author Kay Redfield Jamison talks about the episodes of mania and depression she experienced in college, then recalls her years in graduate school as a time of relative stability. All that changed when she began teaching at UCLA. "When I joined the faculty at UCLA in the psychiatry department as a young assistant professor, I went flamingly manic, " Dr. Jamison says. "Hallucinations, delusions...completely psychotic."
Online
2015; 2011
14.

Stigma of Mental Illness, the

Dr. Andrew Leuchter, Director of Adult Psychiatry at UCLA, talks about the stigma of mental illness. The manifestations of that run the gamut from patients avoiding treatment, to insurance companies providing little or no psychotherapy benefits.
Online
2015; 2011
15.

Scientific View of Human Nature, the

Continuing his discussion of science and its limitations, philosopher Hubert Dreyfus says that science is good at figuring out facts, like the genetic code or what human beings need in order to survive. Where science falls short, Professor Dreyfus explains, is when it tries to say whether survival is a good thing, or what's worth doing and what's not. Those kinds of issues are more appropriately in the realm of culture, not science, Professor Dreyfus maintains.
Online
2015; 2011
16.

Making a Difference

Former Secretary of Labor and university professor Robert Reich talks about the satisfaction of being part of the process that alters public policy with regard to issues like minimum wage and worker safety. "There is no greater satisfaction than knowing that you have made a difference in enabling sometimes millions of people to live a better life," Secretary Reich notes.
Online
2015; 2011
17.

Humans as Rational Animals

Philosopher Daniel Dennett talks about the argument that humans are unique because we are rational. Professor Dennett points out examples of other animals which are also capable of taking actions based on rationality. The difference, he notes, is that these other species don't talk about their rationality, nor do they formulate logical proofs in their head.
Online
2015; 2011
18.

Recognizing Depression

Dr. Andrew Leuchter, Director of Adult Psychiatry at UCLA, talks about the differences between what he calls, ". . . normal ups and downs," and depression. Dr. Leuchter says that when someone is down for weeks at a time, ". . . that's when we start to think of somebody as, not just being down but, being depressed and needing treatment."
Online
2015; 2011
19.

Successful Campaigns: Image or Reality?

Former White House press secretary Mike McCurry debunks the idea that the images of candidates are manufactured by behind-the-scenes image consultants. "This is really about the qualities of the individual who's running and. . . the camera doesn't lie. . . and the American people are awfully good at picking up...who would be good at this and who wouldn't...If you try to manufacture something, the American people instantly see through it."
Online
2015; 2011
20.

Depression and the Brain

Dr. Andrew Leuchter, Director of Adult Psychiatry at UCLA, talks about brain-mapping and other techniques for looking into the brain that may predict whether a patient suffering from depression is going to benefit from a particular treatment that's being used.
Online
2015; 2011