Ross Files with Dave Ross

Broadcast legend Dave Ross, winner of multiple Edward R. Murrow Awards for excellence in journalism, talks to the people and policy makers affecting your world. Now, you can listen to the full conversation - raw and uncut. Hear Dave Ross on Seattle’s Morning News weekdays at 6am on KIRO Radio 97.3 FM.
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Ross Files with Dave Ross



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Jun 30, 2016

Even a grad with good grades might be entering the world without enough EMOTIONAL intelligence. Marc Brackett, the head of the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence, tells us about some of his research.

Jun 29, 2016

In my experience, gun shop owners take gun control very seriously.

And it occurred to me they were an underutilized resource in the ongoing gun debate and one of the best defenses in keeping firearms out of the hands of people like the Orlando shooter, Omar Mateen.

I talked about this last week in one of my commentaries, I asked why there wasn't a database allowing gun shop owners to share information about sketchy customers so one shop doesn’t sell a weapon to somebody who was already turned away by a shop down the street.

Seth Banks is a computer programmer from California. He heard my commentary and got to work.

Six days later was complete, so I called him up to talk about it.

Jun 27, 2016

The shooting at Orlando's Pulse nightclub had a number of effects on the rest of the world, including a spike in gun sales.

But it wasn't only guns. 

Defense Distributed makes a kit that allows anybody with $1,500 to manufacture the lower receiver of an AR-15, the part of the gun with the trigger and magazine. And they can do this without having to register the weapon with the Federal Government.

Sales of the Ghost Gunner kit almost doubled the day after the killings in Orlando, and had nearly tripled just two days later.

Cody Wilson is the founder of Managing Director of Defense Distributed and my guest on today's Ross File Podcast.

Jun 23, 2016

You've heard of the NIMBYs but what about YIMBYs? Laura Bernstein is a housing activist with the YIMBY movement, who just held a conference in Colorado. She discusses the affordable housing issue in Seattle and how the city should manage growth and deal with urban density and transit.

Jun 10, 2016

The Washington state Democratic convention is this weekend, which should be interesting. 

Even though in the Democratic primary a large majority went for Hillary Clinton, in the caucuses, a big majority went for Bernie Sanders. 

My guest today is state Rep. Noel Frame. She is a Bernie supporter and the likely chair of this weekends convention in Tacoma.

Jun 8, 2016

If you find yourself feeling less sympathetic towards others, you might look at what kinds of medicine you're taking. 

New research from Ohio State University finds the painkiller acetaminophen might be doing more than numbing your pain, they might also dull your empathy. 

Seattle native Baldwin Way co-authored the study and is my guest. 

Jun 7, 2016


Whom to marry. 

It's one of the most important decisions you'll make, and yet you're not going to choose correctly if you are looking for a "perfect" match. 

That person simply doesn't exist.

At least that's what Alain de Botton wrote in his piece "Why You'll Marry the Wrong Person" for The New York Times. 

His article was one of the most read stories and created quite the buzz, so I called him up to talk about it.

De Botton's new book, "The Course of Love," comes out June 14.

He will be at the Seattle Public Library June 22nd at 7 PM. 

Jun 6, 2016

I've been interviewing candidates for Washington state Superintendent of Public Instruction.

It's an important job, especially as legislators get ready to spend between $8-10 billion more per year on education to comply with the McCleary decision. 

Among the candidates is Ron Higgins, who has taught both here in Washington state as well as California. 

As you will hear, Higgins campaign is focused on a few key issues, some of which differ from his competition. 

Jun 3, 2016
This year, we don’t just vote for Governor, we also vote for Superintendent of Public Instruction, the chief public schools officer of the state. 
There are a number of candidates running.
There is a huge issue facing the state, of course, in terms of funding schools. By most estimates, it’s going to be at least 8-billion dollars a year.
And today, we’re talking to candidate KumRoon Maksirisombat or as he likes to be called - Mr. Mak. He is a teacher at Chief Sealth International High School.
Mr. Mak, who ran for this position back in 2004, says his big issue is wasteful spending of tax-payer dollars with regards to how curriculum is funded and in perks provided to administrators. 
May 31, 2016

Danni Askini is the Executive Director of the Gender Justice League, which is Washington states only Transgender rights organization. 

Askini recently dropped her candidacy for the 43rd legislative district to work full-time on defeating Initiative No. 1515, which would among other things require that public schools restrict access to bathrooms based on an individual’s sex at birth.

She joined me in studio to tell her story and explain her opposition to I-1515. 

May 30, 2016

As part of my election coverage, I'm speaking with the candidates for Washington state Superintendent of Public Instruction, to replace Randy Dorn who is not seeking re-election. 

This week's candidate is David Spring.   

Mr. Spring is an a expert on taxes, member of Opt Out Washington (as well as a number of other education-related groups) and the leader for Washington for Bernie Sanders. 

We spoke about his plan to fund public education, what he'd do about high stakes testing, how much he'd pay teachers, and he makes the boldest campaign promise of the season.


May 27, 2016

Technology is advancing at a rapid pace which shows no signs of slowing down. In his new book "The Great Acceleration: How the World is Getting Faster, Faster," author Robert Colvile explores how this rapid pace of growth might benefit us both physically and mentally.

May 19, 2016

The National Academy of Sciences released a comprehensive study that states GMO foods do not pose any human health risks to consume. Dr. Fred Gould discusses the methodology and implications of the study with Dave Ross.

May 19, 2016

DNA testing has been held up as a bulletproof evidential standard in court cases since the technology became widely available. As it turns out, there are many issues with DNA testing that have led to numerous false convictions. Writer Matthew Schaer discusses his latest article "The False Promise of DNA Testing" with Dave Ross.

May 18, 2016

In his new book, "The Big Picture" Sean Carroll explores the meaning of life, the possible existence of God, and whether anything exists beyond the natural world. Dave Ross enjoys a scintillating conversation with the renowned theoretical physicist.

May 17, 2016

Would Donald Trump's promise to rip up trade agreements protect jobs or kill them?  Trump's critics say it would mean countries like China would retaliate and we'd actually have fewer jobs.

But State Senator Doug Ericksen hears a very different message from his constituents in Whatcom County, especially the ones who turned out for that Trump rally in Lynden last week.

Senator Ericksen helped organize that rally. We discuss Trump's appeal, his tax returns, and his controversial stances.

May 13, 2016

Harriet Ryan brings us the results of her Los Angeles Times investigation on how the failed promises of OxyContin feed our national opioid epidemic

May 11, 2016

Heather Weiner is with the group Washington Won't Discriminate, opposing WA Initiative-1515. They believe repealing Washington's law allowing people to choose a bathroom based on their gender identity would lead to further harassment of transgender people, and would economic consequences for the state.

The pro-I-1515 group, Just Want Privacy, is still in the signature-gathering phase.

May 10, 2016

Kaeley Triller with the group Just Want Privacy, currently gathering signatures for WA Initiative-1515. They believe Washington's law allowing people to choose a bathroom based on their gender identity is dangerous, and should be repealed.

The anti-1515 campaign is called Washington Won't Discriminate. They believe repealing the law would encourage harassment of transgender people, and would have economic consequences for Washington state.

May 5, 2016

Do you care about the job our schools are doing for your kids?

I'll bet you do, which is why I want you to meet the candidates running for Superintendent of Public Instruction to replace Randy Dorn, who is stepping down.

Today my guest is Chris Reykdal, who currently serves in the State Legislature and is Vice-chair of the House Education Committee. 

I've previously spoken with Robin Fleming, who says what takes place outside the classroom affects what happens inside. You can find that in an early episode of the Ross Files.

May 4, 2016

In my quest, to solve the world’s problems I've been exploring the idea of a basic or guaranteed income.

GiveDirectly is a charity that gives cash directly to the extreme poor, people who live on less than a dollar a day.

GiveDirectly’s COO Ian Bassin says evidence shows programs like these work well - so well in fact that they’re going to provide a basic income to 6,000 households in Kenya for at least 10 years.

I wanted to know more, so I called him up.

Apr 28, 2016

Just last week, on April 20 there was a rally in Seattle's Central District at the intersection of 23rd and Union outside of Uncle Ike's Pot Shop.

At the center of the protest was Uncle Ike's proximity to a nearby church where kids gather, which some say violates a state law requiring pot shops to be 500 feet from places kids come together. 

I called the owner of Uncle Ike's, Ian Eisenberg to get his reaction.

I also spoke with the long time Central District resident and Seattle rapper Draze, who was a central figure in last weeks protest. If you haven't already, please listen to that episode to hear his concerns.

Apr 28, 2016

Just last week, on April 20 there was a rally in Seattle's Central District at the intersection of 23rd and Union outside of Uncle Ike's Pot Shop.

At the center of the protest was Uncle Ike's proximity to a nearby church where kids gather, which some say violates a state law requiring pot shops to be 500 feet from places kids come together. 

One of the rally's leaders was long time Central Area resident, rapper Draze. He stopped by the studio to talk about this and other changes to the neighborhood he considers home...and he performs his song, "Irony on 23rd" which addresses these issues.

I also spoke with the owner of Uncle Ikes, Ian Eisenberg. If you haven't already, please listen to that episode to hear his side of the story.

Apr 26, 2016

What do you think about the idea of an Unconditional Basic Income -- a monthly payment that everyone would get, no matter what?

“Basic income” is the idea that every man, woman, and child would receive a modest amount of money each month to cover their basic, essential needs as a right of citizenship.

And that's everybody -- billionaires, drug addicts, talk show hosts. You wouldn't even have to pass a drug test to qualify.

It's similar to the payments that Alaskans and Norwegians have been getting as their share of oil revenues. The idea is that as a shareholder in your country or state you get a dividend. Or you could look at it as a collective inheritance passed down from previous generations.

In June, Switzerland will hold a referendum on this Basic Income idea -- the proposal there is for $2500 a month for every man woman and child -- and among the experts campaigning for it is Professor Guy Standing who teaches Economics at the University of London. I Skyped him in Geneva -- and he is convinced that this is the only way Capitalist countries can do something meaningful about the growing anger over income inequality.

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