Monday, July 8, 2013

AirTalk for Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Contact: Producers Joel Patterson, Jasmin Tuffaha, Fiona Ng, Jerry Gorin



Tuesday, July 9, 2013

11:06 –11:20



11:20 -11:40

Topic:  Why flying phobias persist despite soaring airline safety records: The dramatic images of Saturday's Asiana Airlines' crash stir fears of flying, but the sober statistics of plane crashes tell a different story. According to a notable scholar from MIT, the chance of dying in an airplane disaster in the U.S. is 1 in 14 million. Travelling abroad? World-wide, 2012 was the safest year for commercial air travel since 1945. Put another way, MIT’s Arnold Barnett says flying has become so reliable that you could fly every day for 123,000 years before being in a fatal crash. So why are people still afraid of flying? Some are so scared that careers get derailed, vacations never got off the ground, and far-away loved ones get fed up with one-way visits. UCLA psychologist Emanuel Maidenberg joins AirTalk to explain the causes of and cures for aerophobia.

Guest:  Emanuel Maidenberg, PhD, Psychologist with the UCLA Health System; he specializes in anxiety disorders




Topic: Single dad households on the rise:

The number of American households headed by a single father has significantly grown in the last five decades, according to a recent study by the Pew Research Center. Single fathers have risen nine-fold from 300,000 in 1960s to over 2.6 million in 2011. Nearly 8% of households are now headed by a single dad. Back in 1960 single dads made up just 14% of all single parents, now that number is 25%--nearly a quarter. Single fathers have an average income of $40,000, much higher than the average $26,000 for single mother households. The study also shows the change in the public perception of the role of fathers. An opinion survey also conducted by Pew found that providing values as well as emotional support are now considered important roles for fathers, not just bringing in income.

There are several factors that may have contributed to this dramatic increase. Out-of-wedlock births are now more common, single parenting is more acceptable, and courts over the years have been more likely to award custody to a father, all of these factors may  have impacted the rise.

Do you think this study reflects a change in how fatherhood is viewed? How has the role of fatherhood changed? Do you think there is a stigma with being a single mom that single dad’s don’t face?

Guest:  Christopher Brown, Executive Vice President ,


Guest: Gretchen Livingston, Senior Researcher, Pew Research  


12:06 – 12:20

Topic: Proposed law aims to increase parental rights of sperm donors

A new bill proposed by California State Senator Jerry Hill aims to increase parental rights to sperm donors. Under current state law, someone who donates sperm through a sperm bank and does not marry the woman who conceives is not considered the child’s natural father unless the couple explicitly agrees to it beforehand. But a case involving A-list Hollywood actor Jason Patric has gotten Senator Hill and others to consider some changes to the law. In Patric’s case, the actor donated sperm to an ex-girlfriend in 2009 and now wishes to gain partial custody of the child. While Patric claims that the couple agreed to raise the child together and that he has a loving relationship with his 3-year-old son, his ex-girlfriend Danielle Schreiber claims that they agreed that Patric would not raise the child. Under provisions written into the new bill, a person in Patric’s case would be eligible for more parental rights by proving to the court that he openly acknowledges the child as his own and receives the child into his home. Senator Hill argues that someone cultivating a parental relationship with a child deserves some rights. But opponents to the law, including Schreiber’s attorney, say that changing the law will only encourage mothers to keep children even more distant from their biological fathers in fear of losing custody. Others like the California National Organization for Women maintain that changing the law would unfairly reward male sperm donors while infringing on the rights of the mother. The proposed bill seems to be a sort of equivalent to common-law parenting. Is it fair and can it work?

Guest:  Jerry Hill (TENTATIVE), State Senator representing the 13th District

Guest:  Patricia Bellasalma (TENTATIVE), President of the California National Organization for Women


12:20 – 12:40

Topic: How to lower people’s sugar consumption? Try regulating it like alcohol.

Yep. That’s exactly what pediatric endocrinologist Robert Lustig at the University of California, San Francisco suggested in an interview at this year’s Aspen Ideas Festival. Lustiq argues that sugar satisfies the four criteria used to determine whether a substance, like alcohol, should be regulated. 1. Ubiquity: how easily can it be found. 2. Toxicity: that consumption in a large amount leads to chronic health problems. 3. Addictiveness: the more we eat it, the more we want it. 4. It has a negative impact on society.

Should we consider regulating sugar? What are the benefits and the drawbacks? What would regulations even look like?

Guest:  Robert Lustig (LUHS-tig), MD, a pediatric endocrinologist at the University of California, San Francisco.


Guest:Keith Ayoob (A-yoob), Associate Professor of Pediatrics at Albert Einstein College of Medicine



12:40 – 1:00

Topic: Do open-plan offices decrease productivity?: Employers are constantly struggling to figure out how to make employees happy, increase workplace productivity, and save on costs. More and more companies have looked for solutions in workplace design strategies, and according to the International Management Facility Association, 70 percent of U.S. employees now work in open-plan offices. One of the main advantages to an open-plan design is that it cuts down building costs and increases the use of space. Rather than cramming workers in tiny walled offices, an open-plan utilizes the same area in a less constricting and claustrophobic way. Proponents also say that in a digital age, an open-plan office allows for more face-to-face collaboration, encourages creativity and increases employee satisfaction through social connections. A 1996 research study by the University of Southern California found that a collaborative environment actually increased productivity by over 400 percent. With statistics like that, it’s no surprise Facebook is planning a Frank Gehry-designed 100,000 square feet open-plan office in New York. However, a new study by design firm Gensler shows that open-plan offices are actually decreasing productivity. Their “2013 U.S. Workplace Survey” found that three out of four workers are “struggling to work effectively” because of difficulty focusing, resulting in longer hours to complete tasks. According to a statement by Gensler’s co-Chief Executive Officer Diane Hoskins, “Analysis of findings from our 2013 study confirms that employees who can effectively focus are 57% more able to collaborate, 88% more able to learn, and 42% more able to socialize in their workplace than their peers who are unable to focus. They are more satisfied with their jobs, more satisfied with their workplaces, and see themselves as higher performing.” Do you work in an open-plan office? Do you have trouble focusing? What’s the balance between collaboration and personal space? Is productivity actually decreasing? How important is workplace design? What works and what doesn’t? What would you like to change?

Guest: Janet Pogue, Principal in Gensler’s Workplace Practice; leader of Gensler’s “2013 U.S. Workplace Survey”




Warm regards,

Jasmin Tuffaha    office: 626.583.5162 

Producer, “AirTalk with Larry Mantle” 


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