Retake Conversations

A relatively new feature of Retake Our Democracy is that since April 25, 2020 we record both audio and visual of our KSFR radio show that airs every Saturday from 8:30 – 9:00 am. These Zoom Conversations will be posted each Saturday after the radio show airs. These interviews often exceed what is aired live, so even those who heard the show live will enjoy listening to the full Zoom Conversations.

April 17, 2021 Retake Conversation with Mariel Nanasi, New Energy Economy Executive Director. We discussed Community Solar, Local Choice Energy, the Green Amendment and other energy/environment bills and how and why the legislature has such a difficult time passing any bills that challenge the utility or gas and oil industries. But for my money, the best part of the interview began at 30M03S once we were off the air with KSFR. Mariel outlined all that is at stake with the proposed Avangrid acquisition of PNM. You won’t have heard or seen this anywhere else and it really points to the critical importance of achieving energy independence and energy democracy. Listen up!

Saturday, April 10, Retake Conversation with Paul & Roxanne. We recapped the Roundhouse session, describing the big wins, the painful losses and the factors behind the scenes that created impediments to passing more progressive legislation, particularly in relation to issues that challenge any and all industries with inordinate influence in the Roundhouse, including from banking, insurance, gas and oil and the utility industries.

Saturday, April 3, Retake Conversation with Sally Rodgers, founder of Conservation Voters New Mexico and Lifelong Roundhouse Advocate. Sally and I talked Roundhouse session 2021 with Sally reflecting back on how it compared to past sessions going back to her first in 1968. Her insights into how the legislature really operates and the most effective advocacy strategies one could employ were most instructive. A very important conversation.

Saturday, March 27, Retake Conversation with Viki Harrison, Common Cause National (formerly Executive Director at Common Cause, NM. Viki now holds a position on the national team. But she has remained tethered to NM politics, especially during the legislative sessions. She always speaks candidly, never mincing words or sidestepping what is really in play. The Zoom video recording of the show will be posted on Saturday, in case you miss it live.

Retake Conversation on March 20. We didn’t do a show this week due to exhaustion. Instead we replayed the interview with Phillip Shepherd, the first zoom-based interview we did, way back on April 25. I can’t think of a better show to re-air on the heels of a seemingly unending series of high-pressure election primaries, state and national elections, the Georgia special election and then the legislative session. Philip is a delightful interview with very interesting observations on COVID, climate change, capitalism, and how the predominance of our historic efforts to manage and manipulate nature have led us to where we are today. If this sounds like something you’d like to check out, just scroll to the bottom of the page.

March 13 Retake Conversation with YUCCA Youth Advocates Castille Aguilar and Artemisio Romero y Carver two members of the youth advocacy group YUCCA. If you want to hear some authentic youth voices, this is a very interesting interview. Recorded on February 24, it only aired on March 13 due to technical glitches at KSFR. It is worth the wait.

March 6 Retake Conversation with Former Senator Dede Feldman . Dede has become a pal of Retake and our conversation was very illuminating. If you want to understand how the legislature works, you can do no better than picking up a copy of her book, The NM State Senate: Boots, Suits and Citizens, but to get a preview of her understanding of the NM State Legislature, check out this interview.

February 27 Retake Conversation with Mary Feldblum, Director of Health Security for New Mexicans Campaign. We discussed why the Health Security Act is so important to New Mexico and addressed some of the concerns raised by some legislators. Please share this with your legislators.

Retake Conversation with Mariel Nanasi, Director of New Energy Economy. We discussed her advocacy for SB 155, a bill that would amend the badly flawed Energy Transition Act, SB 83 Local Choice Energy, a game changing bill that would allow local jurisdictions to choose their own energy futures. She also offered her views on why NEE and Sierra Club, CVNM and other more mainstream enviro organizations wind up in conflict.

Retake Conversation with Angela Merkert, Director of Alliance For Local Economic Prosperity who is leading the charge to get the legislature to pass a bill to create a State Public Bank.

February 7, 2021. Conversation with Maya van Rossum, founder of The Green Amendment for the Generations. This is an important conversation as van Rossum responded to the specific questions and concerns about SJR-3 the Environmental Rights Act. This is most informative, as van Rossum concisely responds to each concern.

January 30, 2021. Conversation with Roxanne and Paul focused on developments in the first ten days of the legislative session.

January 23, 2021. Conversation with Roxanne and Paul outlined Retake Our Democracy’s 2021 Legislative Strategy and the 20 Transformational Bills we support.

January 16, 2021 Conversation with Rep. Roger Montoya. Rep. Montoya is a new legislator from HD 40. Montoya was a recipient of the International CNN Heroes Award for his work with youth. He is passionate about improving infrastructure in rural and tribal New Mexico, as well as reforming the juvenile justice system. He is a strong progressive voice and the interview is well worth your time.

January 9, 2021. Retake Conversation with Margaret Brown Vega and Nathan Craig, two members of a NM-based coalition, People Over Private Prisons and advocate for HB 40, a bill that would prohibit the state from entering into new contacts for private prisons and prohibiting renewal of existing private prison contracts. The discussion lays out the history of private prisons in NM, how poorly they care for prisoners and how much more expensive it is to privatize the prison business. HB 40 is one of Retake’s Priority Bills for the 2021 session.

Saturday, January 2, Retake Conversation: Paul Gibson & Roxanne Barber discuss the silver linings in a very dark 2020 and look ahead to what we face in 2021.

Saturday, December 26, Retake Conversation with Sireesha Manne, Executive Director of the NM Center on Law and Poverty. A powerful conversation where we learned the critical role played by the the Center in advocating and litigating for expanded early childhood education, climate justice, predatory lending limits and other issues. What was special about the interview was how Sireesha continually framed these issues in a lens of systemic racism.

Saturday, December 19, 2020, Retake Conversation with Rep. Derrick Lente and Indigenous Activists Conroy Chino and Jasmine Yeppa, A most compelling interview that extended for almost 60 minutes, as we spoke about the impact of Covid on indigenous communities, the lack of infrastructure in those communities and the impact of both of these factors upon young people in school and in their lives outside school.

Saturday, December 5 Retake Conversation with NM State Senator Mimi Stewart. This was a very interesting interview, as Senator Stewart was very candid about her life history, her years in the Roundhouse, her priorities for the 2021 Legislative Session, her role as Pro-Tem and the process she is using to select committee chairs and her views on several of our bills. Most informative interview.

Retake Conversation, On KSFR 101.1 FM: Roxanne Barber and Paul Gibson Outline the 2021 Retake Legislative Strategy and the 15 Transformational Bills We Plan to Support. Roxanne and I bantered about how Retake developed its 2021 legislative strategy and the list of bills we will be supporting, as well as talking about the change in the Senate that should make bills passage far easier in that chamber. I sure look ornery. YouTube picks the pictures.

November 21, 2020. Retake Conversation with Virginia Nocochea, Executive Director from NM Environmental Law Center and Eric Jantz and long-time staff attorney at NMELC. We focused on different manifestations of environmental justice from the permitting of asphalt plants adjacent to communities of color, the lack of sufficient public health and testing infrastructure in low-income and tribal communities, and the sprawling Santolina development outside ABQ. This was a great conversation centered on communities of color in NM.

November 14, 2020. Retake Conversation with Miguel Acosta, Co-Director, Earth Care. A tremendous conversation as Miguel is as astute as it gets in identifying systemic racism and climate or economic injustices. We spoke about plans for expanding an asphalt plant next to low-income housing in the southside, as well as the obelisk and the cities failed response. What’s more, we spoke about something I knew nothing about, evidence of systemic racism and lack of transparency in NM state Covid testing. Shocking.

November 7. 2020. Retake Conversation with Eric Griego, Working Families Party as we breakdown the 2020 election. Caveat. The recording was completed on Wednesday morning, so forgive us if we didn’t completely foresee what has transpired. But we do talk about the NM legislative races and what that portends for 2021.

10.17.2020. Retake Conversation with Kristina Fisher and Fred Nathan from Think New Mexico. Kristina Fisher and Fred Nathan joined me in a brisk conversation covering the proposed Constitutional Amendment 1, which Think NM vigorously opposes. But we spent most of our time discussing the disgraceful predatory lending industry in NM and what we can do about it in the 2021 legislative session. In 2019, the legislature passed a bill that capped predatory lending rates at 175%. We can do better than that. Find out why this is such an important issue and what is planned for 2021.

10.10.2020 Retake Conversation with Elaine Sullivan & Melissa Pickett from the Alliance for Local Economic Prosperity, the organization advocating for establishing a state public bank in the 2021 legislative session. Find out more about how a public bank could be a key part of jumpstarting and diversifying the NM State economy.

10.3.2020. Paul & Roxanne do a duet conversation with a focus on Trump’s Covid diagnosis, the election, the debate, the water crisis in NM, and more. We had to do this at the last minute, when there was a cancellation. In the end, it turned out to be a good little conversation, tied up in 30 minutes.

9.26.2020. Maya Van Rossum is the founder and Executive Director for The Green Amendment, a legislative strategy that would afford all individuals a legal right to clean water, air and environment. Existing in Montana and Pennsylvania, the Green Amendment offers advocates and environmental lawyers a tremendous tool for forcing states to enforce regulations and to legislate stronger regulations to protect the environment. Maya has mounted a growing NM coalition, including Retake, that will be introducing legislation to put the Green Amendment on the ballot in 2023. Listen in, as Maya is also a fabulous interview.

9.19.2020 Brittney Barreras is a newcomer to politics, a young Hispanic LGBTQ woman who could have a very bright political future ahead of her….if she can beat a longtime political operative and former Bernalillo County Supervisor….the front man for the heinous Santolina development and known for preventing the county from passing a paid sick leave ordinance. We have a chance to elect someone ready to make change or someone ready to make hay….for developers and big business. Tune in to learn more about Brittney. This race has been elevated to one of our priority races.SHOW LESS

Sept 12 Retake Conversation with Dahr Jamail. Dahr Jamail is an award winning climate crisis author who penned The End of Ice, identified as one of the ten best science books in 2019 by the Smithsonian. We’ve had Dahr on the show before and he has been part of one of our first Zoominars. If you haven’t seen Dahr speak, you will want to watch this 40 minute discussion of how horridly NM is regulating the out of control gas and oil industry. We also range on to speak of still larger climate-related issues. A MUST watch video.

Retake Conversation, September 5 with Peter Smith, former GOP Lt. Governor, State Senator, and US Representative, now a member of Republicans for Trump. This is a fascinating interview. Peter is also the President of KSFR the board of directors and so he and I have co-hosted several pledge drive shows. Interestingly, he lost his re-election campaign to the US House of Representatives to Bernie Sanders, in part because Peter had announced his support for an assault weapons ban and the NRA decided to back Bernie. We talked about his reasons for supporting Biden and also reflected on the days when the GOP had principles. Very worth a listen.

Retake Conversation, August 29, 2020 with Joe Maestas, Democratic candidate for District 3 Commissioner on the Public Regulation Commission. We spoke about the Governor’s hope to eliminate elections for PRC Commissioners and have appointments done by Governor appointment. We also spoke about the role of the PRC and the root causes of the some of the challenges plaguing the Commission. Very thoughtful discussion.

Retake Conversation, August 22, 2020 with Harold Pope, Democratic candidate for the NM State Senate in district 23. This race is Retake Our Democracy’s # 2 priority, a MUST WIN race. In our 30 minute interview Harold laid his priorities and filled us in on how his life has informed his policy priorities. After 30 minutes, you will completely understand why Retake is so supportive of Harold Pope. Unfortunately, we do not have video of this interview. Youtube, the platform we use to edit and house our shows, finally noticed that we were using the Buffalo Springfield’s “For What Its Worth” as our theme music. Youtube blocked our capacity to edit the video, invoking a copyright concern. I had assumed the use was fine since I’ve been using it at KSFR for years. But KSFR has a broadcast license that allows use of snippets of songs. I do not. So in the future there will be no Buffalo Springfield to open Retake Conversations. Click here to listen in to Harold and I talk NM state politics.

Retake Conversation, August 15, 2020, a solo message of hope from Paul Gibson. A message of hope that begins with reflections on how the current COVID crisis compounded by the fears invoked by a desperate President, can paralyze us….until we shift focus and pay attention to all that is emerging on both sides of the Atlantic and the consider the opportunity at hand. It is a pep talk and it just felt like the time was ripe for a pep talk. I start off kinda rocky, as when recording this in the first seconds I have to do about 4 things at once. Usually that goes smoothly, but in this Conversation I think I told you I was the host 3 times. When Roxanne and I heard it on the radio Sat morning, it made us laugh. I could edit it, but it seems strangely more authentic as is. We ain’t pros here, just volunteers like you.

Retake Conversation, August 8, 2020 with NM State Rep. Melanie Stansbury in a conversation about NM state water policy. You will be surprised to hear that the state actually does not have the legal authority to manage its own water. Huh? Find out what that is about and more.

Saturday, August 1, 2020. Retake Conversation with Greg Palast, author of the new book “How Trump Stole the 2020 Election.” Our thirty minute conversation is enough to make your hair curl, as Greg lays out the ways in which the GOP has used the last four years to tilt the scales in the coming election in ways that polling simply can’t reflect. He shies away from “predicting” a Trump win, but does point to the very real possibility of chaos on November 4 that extends for weeks and prevents some key states, run by GOP legislatures are unable or unwilling to certify the election results. This is must see and only 30 minutes.

Saturday, July 25. Retake Conversation with Karen Whitlock, Democratic candidate for the NM House of Representatives challenging Rebecca Dow (R). Get to know Karen Whitlock, Democratic candidate for the NM House of Representatives challenging Rep. Rebecca Dow in District 38. District 38 is one of Retake Our Democracy’s six priority races in the November election. Listen in and find out why we are so enthused wit Karen Whitlock. Even if you heard the interview on the radio, the recording includes an extra 20 minutes of conversation. Karen is a tremendous candidate. I was blown away with how solid and well-informed her progressive stands are. And then when you think she is challenging Republican Rebecca Dow who has a two year track record of voting no on almost every bill Retake supports.

Saturday, July 18, 2020. Retake Conversation with Dick Mason, NM League of Women Voters, and Kathleen Burke, Fair Districts New Mexico. People have been trying to pass legislation to create a state constitutional amendment for decades and it runs into a brick wall every year. What is with that? We now have the perfect opportunity to get it done: Democrats in charge of everything. Find out why that may not be the chemistry needed to get this done. Find out how gerrymandering has diminished the political power of communities of color. Find out who is pulling the strings to prevent an independent redistricting commission.

Saturday, July 11. Retake Conversation with Eric Griego. A tremendous interview on a most timely issue: the 2020 election in NM and the Nation. Eric Griego has been in the political theater for decades and as the Director of the Working Families Party of NM has, over the past four years, been the chief architect behind the transformation of the NM state legislature. Working with allies like Ole, Indivisibles statewide, Nasty Women, Taos United and Retake Our Democracy, the state legislature is a far more progressive body than it was in 2015. Find out more about what they’ve achieved and their plans for this November.

Saturday, July 4. Retake Conversation with Dr. Mary Feldblum. Dr. Feldblum began advocacy for Health Security in NM in 1993. She has doggedly studied healthcare reform and with support from allies, has continuously improved the legislation each year. In our conversation, we discuss the history of the bill’s legislative journeys, the studies that have been conducted to affirm the financial viability of the bill, and the opportunity to finally get it done in 2021. NO ONE in NM knows healthcare better and NO ONE is better able to make a very complex piece of legislation so clear and simple. The Public Bank and the Health Security Act will be our top two priorities in 2021. Check out why in this Retake Conversation.

Saturday, June 27, 8:30 – 9 am on KSFR 101.1 FM Retake Conversation with Laura Ives and Jeff Haas. Laura is the former legal director for the ACLU of NM and now is a partner at Civil Rights Law, an ABQ law firm that is representing Scott Williams, who was shot by Steven Baca. Jeff Haas is a Santa Fe attorney who represented the family of Fred Hampton, the Black Panther from Chicago who was murdered by Chicago police over in June 1969 and has made a career of representing clients in a wide range of racial and environmental justice, including representing those arrested at Standing Rock.

We discussed the June 10 peaceful protest that was disrupted when vigilante Steven Baca shot protester Scott Williams four times in the back, as ABQ failed to respond to multiple calls for protection from Baca’s having already body slammed three women to the ground. We used this event as a point of departure to discuss police violence, police department cultures, and the role unions play in protecting bad cops from being held accountable. An excellent and timely discussion.

Saturday, June 20, 8:30 – 9:00 am on KSFR 101.1 FM. Retake on the Radio with Greg Mello, Los Alamos Study Group.

For those of you who could use a primer on Los Alamos National Labs and their role in the nuclear arms development and plans to expand their operations, this is a great place to start. Greg and I had a great discussion of LANL’s historic role in the nuclear arms research and development and their current plants to vastly expand that work. Greg is the most knowledgeable person I know on the topic, so tune in. If you miss it, you can watch and listen to the recording that went on for 20 minutes beyond the 30 minute show. The show will appear below at 9:30″ish” Saturday morning.

June 13, 2020. Loveless Johnson III,
Co-founder NM Alliance for Justice

Timely conversation about police violence and a new statewide advocacy effort forming in NM.

May 30, 2020. Kate Noble,
President, Santa Fe Public Schools.

We spoke about the ways in which the pandemic is impacting the school district, teachers, students and families and how the district will adjust going forward. We also went deeply into issues far afield from the school district examining neoliberalism, Trump, and a better normal.

May 23, 2020. Neomi Martinez-Parra Who Is Challenging Sen. John Arthur Smith & Carrie Hamblen Challenging Sen. Mary Kay Papen

Very informative interview with two courageous challengers who have a real chance to unseat two of the most important NM State Senate DINOs. We discuss their position on a woman’s right to choose, radioactive waste, the state budget, and much more. Enjoy.

May 16, 2020. Senator Antoinette Sedillo Lopez, Retake Hero

Senator Sedillo Lopez was one of only a handful of NM State Legislators awarded “Hero / Heroine” status for her valiant introduction of a fracking moratorium bill (SB 459) and for her opposition to the Produced Water Act, being one of only two Democrats with the courage and wisdom to vote no on this bill. We spoke about her first two years as a state senator and what it is like to be a progressive voice in the far less than progressive NM State Senate. We also spoke about The Green Amendment, how the Produced Water Act could be improved, and what needs to get done between now and January if we want to pass progressive legislation. Sedillo Lopez is such a positive spirit. This interview is worth your time.

May 9, 2020. Maya Van Rossum, The Green Amendment

Maya has been advocating for states throughout the nation to implement the kind of amendment found only in Pennsylvania and Montana. And she is a wonderful combination of passionate and knowledgeable. She has initiated an effort in NM and will be having a Facebook conference with Sen. Antoinette Sedillo Lopez on May 21 at 6pm. We’ll keep you posted on that.

May 2, 2020. Cylvia Hayes

Author of “Normal Was Killing Us,” Cylvia Hayes is the former First Lady of Oregon, an author and trainer. Her article outlines how we need to rethink the rush to return to “normal,” consider how the systems that govern our lives, consign half of the US to living paycheck to paycheck and desolate the environment. She asserts there are questions to be asked and priorities to be reconsidered. Her views very much align with Retake, as this conversation illustrates.

April 25, 2020. Philip Shepherd

Our premiere audio-video show was on April 25, 2020 with Philip Shepherd. (Link to the show below.) I can’t think of a better show to launch this Retake feature, as Philip is a delightful interview with very interesting observations on COVID, climate change, capitalism, and how the predominance of our historic efforts to manage and manipulate nature have led us to where we are today.

Philip Shepherd is recognized as an international authority on embodiment. His unique techniques have been developed to transform our disconnected experience of self and world, and are based on the vision articulated in his celebrated books, New Self, New World (2010) and Radical Wholeness (Nov 2017).  He developed The Embodied Present Process (TEPP) to help people reunite the thinking of the head with the deep, present and calm intelligence of the body. Unlike the prevailing view of embodiment – which involves sitting in the head and ‘listening to your body’ – Philip’s approach helps you listen to the world through the body. What the body most deeply understands is that it belongs to the world. When our thinking is tempered by that understanding, we discover companionship in the world rather than alienation; we recognize guidance where before we saw only obstacles; and we ground ourselves in the security of being, rather than seeking to build security for ourselves with symbols of external value.  

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