“Barriers to Seeking Help as Perceived by Abused Elder Women” with Dr. Frederick Newman

Dr. Frederick Newman is Professor Emeritus of Health Policy and Management. at Robert Stempel College of Public Health at Florida International University.  He will describe his study of 447 abused elder women in south Florida and their perception of barriers to seeking help. He will also discuss the implications for public health policy.

For those interested in reading the more formal – academic version of this presentation, see the attached reprinted from the Journal of Elder Abuse and Neglect: 2013_Newman_Seff_Beaularier_Domestic Abuse Against Elder Women


Exploring The Intersection Between Science And Shamanism with Claude Poncelet, Ph.D.

Claude Poncelet is a practitioner of both physics and shamanism. He does not see a divide between these disciplines. It’s his experience that there is a spiritual dimension to reality and it is not inconsistent with the scientific view of reality. He explains that both traditions are looking at the same reality but through different windows. He takes us on a journey from our cosmic ancestors, the big bang, and shamanism to corporate boardrooms, spirit allies, cancer treatments, and the sacredness of all life. He points out that “Cosmology tells us that we all come from the same source, from the same Big Bang and we are all connected.” We’ve known the truth of this on a spiritual level and Poncelet adds, “What’s very exciting is science is saying it’s also true at a physical level. Quantum mechanics has shown us that every particle in the universe is interconnected with the other particle. It’s exciting to see that science and shamanism are coming together and telling us the same thing.” (hosted by Justine Willis Toms)


Claude Poncelet, Ph.D. is a physicist specializing in nuclear physics, astrophysics and cosmology who has been a professor at the university level. Dr. Poncelet served as Chief Staff Liaison on President Clinton’s council on sustainable development. For more than 25 years, along with his wife, Noelle, he’s taught shamanism in Europe and North America. He volunteers for the Pachamama Alliance and has led trips to the Ecuadorian Amazon for the alliance. He lives in the San Francisco Bay area.

He’s the author of:

To learn more about the work of Claude Poncelet go to www.shamanwithin.net.

Topics explored in this dialogue include:

  • How an astrophysicist came in touch with Shamanism
  • What is shamanism
  • How to find the sacredness in all life including our computers, our cars, and other technology
  • What is a basic shamanic journey
  • How we are cooperating and collaborating with our spirit allies
  • How his shamanic practices have helped him with his cancer treatments
  • How he brings his shamanic practices into corporate meetings with “word doctoring”
  • What is the scientific story of the creation of the universe

Host: Justine Willis Toms                     Interview Date: 9/5/2014                  Program Number: 3523

The Windless Calm Of Tea with James Norwood Pratt

Tea is a miracle of vegetation that not only benefits our health but enhances our mood. It is understood to be liquid sunshine, a beverage distilled from the energy of the sun and has been part of human culture for 6000 years. Tea can mellow us out or energize and exhilarate us, and many Americans are abandoning soft drinks and becoming tea drinkers. Pratt educates us, “In all of nature tea is the only plant that combines the chemicals that wake us up, stimulate us, caffeine principally, with chemical constituents that also soothe and calm us. Nothing else in all of nature does both of these things at the same time.”  There are many families of teas including black tea, green tea, white (oolong) tea, Jasmine & Floral tea, and herbals. And, depending on how the tea leaf is processed, you get radically different teas. Let yourself be amazed by the history of tea, how it is harvested, the best way to brew it, and how it lubricates many social activities. (hosted by Phil Cousineau)


For more than thirty years James Norwood Pratt has been a presence on the international tea scene, becoming Honorary Director of America’s first traditional Chinese tea house and International Juror of India’s first-ever tea competition and a force for excellence as educator and authority on tea and tea lore. He has been described by Chinese tea connoisseurs as the apostle of tea to the round eyes and by other commentators as a tea angel or America’s tea sage.

James Norwood Pratt’s books include:

To learn more about James Norwood Pratt go to www.jamesnorwoodpratt.com.

Topics explored in this dialogue include:

  • Why is tea both exhilarating and comforting
  • What is the best way to buy tea being assured it is fair trade and organic
  • What is the history of tea
  • What is the Camellia sinensis plant
  • What is the dark side of tea history
  • What are the social benefits of tea
  • What is the proper way to make tea

Host: Phil Cousineau                    Interview Date: 8/4/2014               Program Number: 3516

The Healing Power Of Writing Your Memoir with Brenda Peterson

Writing a memoir is not just for established writers and celebrities, as we might expect. Memoir writing can be a way of leaving a legacy for generations and imparting wisdom from real life experiences. It can also be a tool for gaining a better understanding of one’s self. Brenda Peterson teaches that writing a memoir can reveal who we are and can answer the question: “What is the story you are telling yourself about yourself to yourself?” A memoir has a narrative arc, a plot which is “the evolution of the soul through any experience or through time.” Peterson believes that a good memoir will incorporate all of the senses. The memoirist should bring to the surface as much depth of experience as possible to create a meaningful and compelling story. And, she adds, a little levity can change everything. A memoir doesn’t necessarily have to be all about the writer, but inevitably, the writer is the narrator and main character. One of the first things Peterson teaches is the chapter on ‘’Showing up, creating a character of the self.” She often uses playful exercises to draw out the inner critic and to encourage epiphany. Writing a memoir requires reflection, emotion and patience. Memoirs take time, she acknowledges, and becoming an apprentice to the craft is important. She uses an exercise to help spark the process that might be referred to as the “one scene” method. Peterson believes that everyone has a story to tell, “So do it now.” (hosted by Justine Willis Toms)


Brenda Peterson is a novelist, nature writer, and writing teacher. Her work has appeared in The New York TimesChicago Tribune, and O: The Oprah Magazine.

Brenda Peterson’s books include:

To learn more about the work of Brenda Peterson go to www.brendapetersonbooks.com.

Topics explored in this dialogue include:

  • What is a memoir
  • What are some of the compelling reasons to write a memoir
  • What story are you telling yourself about yourself
  • Is there one scene that sums up your story
  • Why a memoir does not have to be chronological
  • What are some ways to jump in and begin your memoir
  • How to turn your inner critic into your protector

Host: Justine Willis Toms                       Interview Date: 9/11/2014                     Program Number: 3520

Four Keys For Thriving In Chaotic Times with Justine Willis Toms

Consciousness is changing for the better. Along with this leap in consciousness there is some amount of chaos. Justine Willis Toms presents four keys to finding and maintaining our true compass, our true direction in the midst of this great turning. She compares this time to that of a caterpillar inside the cocoon where it liquefies as imaginal cells begin to coalesce, soon to emerge as a butterfly. She suggests that “Each one of us are part of that collection of imaginal cells. We are the imaginal cells of the evolving human consciousness.” This is why we must not isolate ourselves. The first key is to get out into the corridors and rub shoulders with life. The second key is to stay curious because it is an antidote to fear. The third key is to remain optimistic because optimism is an antidote to worry. It is not a Pollyanna kind of optimism but a groundedness that keeps us from despair. Keeping this positive attitude helps us to remain in the game even though we may not know the outcome. As they say in AA, “don’t quit before the miracle happens.” And the fourth key is to gather with a circle of friends of the heart, people who support you in your fullness. Join Justine and be infected by her enthusiasm in this dynamic presentation. (hosted by Justine Willis Toms)


Since 1973 Justine Willis Toms, Ph.D. (hon) has been exploring personal, social, and spiritual transformation through her work as an electronic journalist, editor, and writer. She is Cofounder, Executive Director, and host of New Dimensions Radio. She is a founding convener of the Millionth Circle Initiative and has been actively involved in circle work since 1980 including being a founding member of a mixed circle of men and women who have been meeting regularly since 1980. She has been meeting in a circle of women for over thirty years. She serves on the board of World Prayers (www.worldprayers.org) and Women’s Perspective (www.womensperspective.org). In June 2004, she was one of thirty people in the world invited to participate in the Synthesis Dialogues with His Holiness the Dalai Lama. She was inducted into the Broadcasters Hall of Fame in 2011.

Her  books include:

To find out more about the work of Justine Willis Toms go to www.newdimensions.org.

Topics explored in this dialogue include:

  • How the caterpillar becomes a butterfly
  • How we are part of the collection of “imaginal cells” of the new consciousness
  • Why we must not isolate in these threshold times
  • How curiosity can be an antidote to fear
  • Why we must keep working for what is right and good while holding the future loosely
  • How optimism can be an antidote to worry
  • Why we should go on a media fast
  • What is the metaphor of the “Chinese Bamboo”
  • How circles of “Friends of the Heart” help us to bring forth our inner genius

Host: Justine Willis Toms                   Interview Date: 6/29/2014                          Program Number: 3522

Wisdom For A Global Tribe with Alan Briskin

In an uprising of collective wisdom in 2008, the American electorate upended the political paradigm to elect a President who stood for hope, change, and the ideals of a progressive agenda. Is there a way to identify the principles which allowed that process to unfold, and apply them to further the social change inherent in those ideals? Alan Briskin believes there is, and he has a deep reverence for the wisdom that can emerge when individuals come together for a common purpose, even—or especially—when those individuals bring divergent viewpoints to the table. He sees it as a key to the evolution of a new way of relating to one another, as we face the imminent crises of our time, and most importantly, when we must work together in service to those who are not of our own tribe. He explains, “The collective wisdom suggests that we become mindful of our own behavior in groups, and that groups are the unit by which we can create change. So notions of suspending our uncertainty, notions of respect for others, for being patient with the dissonance we may feel with those we disagree with, become disciplines and practices of collective wisdom.” His subtle but powerful message offers a blueprint for how we can create working relationships that optimize our ability to act wisely and effectively, “so that our children and grandchildren have a place that is inhabitable.” (hosted by Michael Toms)


Alan Briskin is a pioneer in the field of organizational learning and cofounder of the Collective Wisdom Initiative.

His books include:

To learn more about the work of Alan Briskin go to www.ThePowerOfCollectiveWisdom.com.

Topics explored in this dialogue include:

  • How you can use both science and mystery in the service of wisdom
  • What practices your group can use to create the conditions for wisdom to arise
  • Why disagreement within a group can be the catalyst for deeper wisdom
  • How you can discern the impact of your decisions on generations to come
  • Why community is important in these times

Host: Michael Toms               Interview Date: 2/5/2010               Program Number: 3342

“The Gifts of The Magi” & “The Nutcracker And The Mouse King”

On this week’s edition of Arts Magazine, Kristen Sullivan (Director) and Ginger Birch (Della) from the Summit Theatre will join us and talk about their holiday production The Gifts Of The Magi.

Then, Jennifer Owen (Artistic Director) of the Owen/Cox Dance Group will be with us. Owen/Cox is presenting their holiday classic The Nutcracker And The Mouse King.

Tune in for all this, plus a brand-new installment of Russ SimmonsFreeze Frame!

Professor Salaita’s Academic Freedom Case Gains Traction and American Psychological Association Independent Investigation Of Ties With Bush Administration Torturers

Academic Freedom Case Gains Traction

Since the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Board of Trustees rejected Professor Steven Salaita s candidacy for a tenured faculty appointment to the American Indian studies program, Salaita has been giving presentations about his case and the importance of academic freedom. Initially we reported here on Law and Disorder that Professor Salaita was un-hired from the American Indian Studies program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign because of his statements on social media criticizing Israel s conduct of military operations in Gaza. Emails within the University revealed under Freedom of Information Act Requests show that it was outside pressure from donors that influenced the University of Illinois Chancellor s decision to dehire Salaita.

Professor Salaita:

My Dad grew up in Jordan, my Mom in Nicaragua. I grew up in West Virginia.
I got my undergraduate and Master’s degree from a small regional college in south west Virginia called Radford University and I got my PhD in Native American Studies from the University of Oklahoma.
My interest in Native American studies developed from a Native American novel course I took in college. It generated a profound interest in the histories of settlement and dispossession in North America which struck me as similar in important ways to the forms of dispossession that Palestinians have suffered in the Middle East.
I submitted my application in October of 2012. I was offered the job in September of 2013. Signed the contract of October of 2013.
The contract was countersigned by university officials and it was made formal. At that point it was announced that I had accepted the job.
The process was nearly 2 years long from submission of the application to the signing of the contract.
Any search process in the humanities or social sciences starts with a search committee of 4-6 people. They’ll look over a candidate’s cover letter. They’ll examine a candidate’s scholarship and they’ll examine that scholarship in detail.
Once the search committee has made its selection it has to go to other committees throughout the university. A committee composed of representatives from the college. In my case the college of liberal arts and sciences.
Because I was coming in with tenure I also had to be vetted by external referees, anywhere from 4 to 6. They basically read all of my scholarship. I had to send them all of my books, all of my scholarly articles, my teaching dossier.
Given the statements that Israeli leaders have made, “mowing the lawn in Gaza”, “putting the people in Gaza on a diet” and their long standing discourse about demographic threats and a surplus of Palestinians . . . its hard not to think about those statements and debates when Israel carpet bombs an area twice the size of Washington DC land area that’s also home to 1.8 million people – you can’t help but think its a sort of violence informed by something worse than mere military strategy.
A right-wing website run by (nominally) Tucker Carlson, the bow-tied gentleman formerly of Crossfire. He’s like he came out of a Republican lab. He wears a bow-tie his name is Tucker.
His website the Daily Caller, ended up publishing a standard right wing hit piece. We’ve seen them all. Salaita, his tweets are horrible, blah, blah, blah, and by the way he’s going to start a job at the University of Illinois.
Then the local rag in Urbana Champaign, the News Gazette picked up on the Daily Caller story and the controversy gained steam. The next thing I know I’m receiving an unceremonious termination letter from the chancellor.
She said she didn’t expect trustee approval so there was no need to show up.
They called me uncivil then it morphed into anti-semitic.
Uncivil – - It’s a term that’s deeply rooted in colonial violence, that always implies something sinister without ever having to explain its intent or its meaning.
It’s a wonderful term for shutting down debate. The entire southern hemisphere was colonized based on notions that they were uncivilized.
The support has been phenomenal. Sixteen departments at the University of Illinois have voted no confidence in the chancellor and the board of trustees.
I’ve also received support from the Center For Constitutional Rights, the Modern Language Association, a number of trade unions have passed resolutions condemning the university’s decision and demanding my reinstatement.
The impulse seems to shut down the debate or discussion before it even begins.
First of all we feel that its a matter of great import to the public interest that the university administration has arbitrarily taken an action that has had negative consequences for the reputation of the university and its ability to function normally.
As you know the university is undergoing a boycott. It’s normal functions are being disrupted.
Support Steven Salaita

Guest ” Professor Steven Salaita, former associate professor of English at Virginia Tech. He is the author of six books and writes frequently about Arab Americans, Palestine, Indigenous Peoples, and decolonization. His current book project is entitled Images of Arabs and Muslims in the Age of Obama.Steven grew up in Bluefield, Virginia, to a mother from Nicaragua (by way of Palestine) and a father from Madaba, Jordan. Books by Salaita


Independent Investigation of APA Ties with Torturers Under Bush Administration

The nation s largest organization of psychologists is set to conduct an independent review into whether it colluded with or supported the government s use of torture in the interrogation of prisoners during the Bush administration. In 2011 we reported on health professionals being front and center and complicit in the US policy of torture. The torturers relied heavily on medical opinion. Medical professionals provided sanitizing and rationalization for the infamous torture memos. During water boarding procedures, a doctor would be present. Psychologists were directly involved in the supervision, design and execution of torture at US military and intelligence facilities. This is a violation of state laws and professional ethics. These health professionals that were involved with torture still hold their professional licenses to practice.

Dr. Stephen Soldz:

At this point I think we all know there was a program of torture in the Bush Administration. CIA and the DOD at Guantanamo. Less known was that psychologists were central to it.
In the CIA, they designed the torture, they were also essential to the legal protection. The Justice Department torture memos basically said that if a health professional, a psychologist or physician is there and says that the interrogation won’t cause severe and long lasting mental harm, than it isn’t torture even if it causes harm.
In other words, their presence was a get out of jail free card.
As far as we can see it was central to the Bush Administration’s plans to indemnify themselves while engaging in torture.
The American Psychological Association apparently worked with the Bush Administration to provide protection for the psychologists who were involved.
The ethics code had been changed in such a way that it allowed psychologists to disobey the ethics code and follow governmental orders.
This was actually done before 911 and passed after 911.
We have been concerned if they (APA) had been complicit in various ways. James Risen from the New York Times just published his new book Pay Any Price and one chapter in there provided direct documentary evidence that APA officials were working with the CIA and the Whitehouse to manipulate the ethics code to apparently allow psychologists to participate.
Michael Ratner: There was a committee appointed from the APA to look into the APA’s role as I recall . . . Dr Stephen Soldz: . . . to decide on whether psychologists participating in a national security interrogation was ethical – was consistent with the APA’s ethics code.
They (APA) were not directly involved as far as we know in torture, they were more involved in doing what the CIA and the Whitehouse wanted in terms of manipulating ethical understandings.
We, Amnesty and CCR have called for an independent investigation of the APA for a number of years. We’re glad the APA board has recognized the need.
They appointed a Chicago attorney who is a specialist in public corruption. We are cautiously optimistic but we have some concerns.
Its inappropriate for the APA board to appoint its own investigator of whether the APA did something wrong.
The time frame they gave of 5 months is awfully short for an investigation of this magnitude. We’re hopeful that the investigation will be wide ranging and comprehensive which is what is needed.
If the accusations in Risen’s book pan out, you have to look at his office (APA CEO) If he knew that means he approved of it. If he didn’t know that means he was incompetent.
This has been the issue that has divided the APA in the last decade.
What was most needed by the intelligence community was that it was ethical for the psychologist to participate in the interrogation.
One of the key people who was in the Bush Whitehouse at this time who is implicated is Susan Brandon who is now a top official in Obama’s high value detainee interrogation group.
If the Republicans win, torture will probably come back.
Since the Nuremburg trials where Nazi doctors were executed for conducting unethical experiments, informed consent has been the backbone of human subjects research.
Yet the APA put in this clause – - if laws or institutional regulations (that’s a very broad category institutional regulations) don’t require informed consent and psychologists don’t have to do it.
If my drug company says I don’t need informed consent . . .there’s no reason why the APA should get rid of informed consent for anything but the most trivial and harmless research.
They’ve never explained where this comes from and its still in effect.

Guest – Dr. Stephen Soldz, psychologist, psychoanalyst, and public health researcher in Boston, and was a co-author of PHR s report Experiments in Torture. He is the Director of the Center for Research, Evaluation, and Program Development at the Boston Graduate School of Psychoanalysis. He was Adjunct Assistant Professor of Psychology (Psychiatry) at Harvard Medical School, and has taught at the University of Massachusetts Boston, Boston College, and Boston University.



RE/MAX Cashes In On Israel’s Illegal Settlements – Code Pink Calls For RE/MAX Boycott Campaign
US Senate Votes Down USA Freedom Act
Michael Ratner: President Obama Doesn’t Need Legislation To Stop The NSA, He Can Simply Direct the NSA Not To Collect Meta-Data