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Shaping Opinion


People, events and things that have shaped the way we think.

People, events and things that have shaped the way we think.


Pittsburgh, PA


People, events and things that have shaped the way we think.




The Business of Death

Ed Michael Reggie joins Tim to talk about the business of death, or more to the point, how the funeral business makes its money and what you can do about it. Ed is the creator of a new website designed to take the mystery out of funeral planning and make the whole process less painful. The site is called If you’ve ever had to plan a funeral, you already know it’s a perfect storm of emotion,...


What They Won’t Tell You About Socialism

Economist, professor and author Paul Rubin joins Tim to talk about the impact of socialism on the future, particularly among young people who tend to be the most supportive of it, but who stand to lose the most because of it. This is the focus of his new book called, “A Student’s Guide to Socialism: How it will trash your lives.” If you want to see where socialism has been tried and failed, you don’t have to look...


Monty Alexander: Gifted

Jazz great Monty Alexander joins Tim to end 2020 and look ahead to a New Year. In this episode Monty talks about his own life, career, holiday traditions, and some interesting experiences with the likes of Frank Sinatra, Miles Davis, Tony Bennett and many others. Ultimately, he talks about his gift and the act of giving. In this episode, we have a relaxed conversation with a man who’s enjoyed nothing less than a dream career in jazz....


A Mall Santa Story

Santa Butch from Montana is a mall Santa and has been one for most of the past 20 years. He joins Tim to tell what it’s like to actually be Santa in the eyes of a child, and some of the stories from his years as spreading holiday cheer as Santa Claus. There’s a good chance you’ve done this. As a child, you went with your mom or dad to a department store or a shopping mall to see Santa Claus. In the typical routine, one...


A Christmas Special featuring Jonathan Butler

International recording artist Jonathan Butler joins Tim to talk about Christmas and how despite all of the adversity he’s faced in his life, his story is one of hope, of inspiration, and of happiness. Jonathan is an accomplished jazz creator and performer who gained fame in pop music, R&B, jazz and worship music. In this episode, Jonathan recalls his own holiday memories and how he taps spirituality in his own music....


Sharyl Attkisson: Focusing on “The Narrative”

Sharyl Attkisson joins Tim to talk about her latest book and the current state of the news media in society. Her book, “Slanted: How the news media taught us to love censorship and hate journalism,” centers on that dynamic called “The Narrative,” which appears to drive so much news coverage we see today. Sharyl talks of her many years as a network reporter and the way the media covers news today. Sharyl Attkisson has...


Tammy Haddix: Creating Hallmark Keepsakes

Hallmark artist and creator Tammy Haddix joins Tim to talk about one of America’s more lasting holiday traditions, our holiday ornaments and decorating the Christmas tree. Tammy tells her own story as a member of the Hallmark Keepsake Ornament Studio, as a mother and a wife, and how all of that comes to play when she helps make the holidays that much more special for Americans across the country. The...


The Mayflower

New York Times best-selling author Nathaniel Philbrick joins Tim to talk about the story behind those pilgrims and the Mayflower in a way that covers much more than that first Thanksgiving. Nathaniel has authored many best sellers, but the one we’ll focus on in this episode is must-reading for anyone who wants to get the full story of Thanksgiving’s origins in America. The book is called simply, “Mayflower.” This episode marks the 400th anniversary of that world-changing voyage....


John Beasley: A Jazz Renaissance Man

Jazz Renaissance man John Beasley joins Tim to talk about his multifaceted career and life in jazz music. He’s a jazz pianist, a composer, an arranger, a music director and a producer. And chances are you’ve heard some of his work through film, TV or commercials. In this episode, John talks about his a one-of-a-kind music lineage and how he balances his many music loves. John Beasley was born in...


Paula Pedene: A VA Whistleblower Story

PR veteran and whistleblower Paula Pedene joins Tim to tell her story of what it’s like to blow the whistle on government waste and other improper practices, including manipulation of VA Hospital waitlists that may have cost patients their lives. When Paula became aware of it all, she spoke up, paid the price and now has a story to tell about what it’s like to be a whistleblower. The federal government...


Bob Mintzer: Big Band Jazz

Jazz great Bob Mintzer joins Tim to talk about his career in jazz, his body of work, his life in music. Bob is one of the world’s leading jazz saxophonists. He’s classically trained, but a self-taught jazz artist, who talks about the music and how the current pandemic is setting the stage for what’s next. Bob Mintzer is a saxophonist, he’s a woodwind specialist, he’s a composer and arranger, and he’s a music...


Sgt. Leroy Petry: A Medal of Honor Story

U.S. Medal of Honor awardee Sgt. Leroy Petry joins Tim to tell his Medal of Honor story, from a life and death battle in Afghanistan to the very definition of the word, “honor.” Sgt. Petry is a retired U.S. Army Ranger who is one of the few to receive the military’s highest honor, and one of the very few medal recipients who have survived to tell their own story. In April of 1862, a group of Union...


At the Intersection of Religion & Politics

Political science professor Dr. Michael Coulter joins Tim to talk about the challenges we face at the intersection of religion and politics. Michael is the chair of the Political Science and Humanities Department at Grove City College in Pennsylvania. In this episode we explore the current environment for civility and respect when it comes discussing religion and politics. It’s an election year, and people...


The Story Behind the Electoral College

Author and Electoral College expert Tara Ross joins Tim to tell the story behind the Electoral College, how it governs elections and why it is still needed. Tara’s latest book is entitled, “Why We Need the Electoral College.” It’s happened five times. Five times a candidate won the presidency even though he did not win the popular vote. He won the presidency because he won the Electoral College. If you’re...


Cal Thomas: The Fall of Empires, the Future of US

Best-selling Author and syndicated columnist Cal Thomas joins Tim to talk about the rise and fall of empires and super powers and what history can tell us about America’s future. Cal recently released a book called, “America’s Expiration Date: The fall of empires and superpowers, and the future of the United States.” Could you ever imagine a world where the United States is not one of its super powers? That’s...


Kurt Elling: A Jazz Singer for Our Time

Influential jazz vocalist Kurt Elling joins Tim to talk about his life in jazz music and the unique role the vocalist plays, along with his multifaceted career in theatre and as one of jazz music’s poets. Kurt Elling is a Grammy award winning jazz vocalist. He’s been described by numerous jazz critics as one of the most influential male jazz vocalists over the past 25 years. The New York Times even described Kurt as...


FATIMA: The Miracle of the Sun

Veteran Hollywood producer Rose Ganguzza joins Tim to talk about her latest project. The picture is called, Fatima. In this episode, Rose tells the story at the center of her most recent film, Fatima, and the creative process for bringing that story to today’s audiences and making it relevant and relatable, all while working to overcome a pandemic in the process. Lucia Santos and her cousins Jacinta and Francisco Marto...


The ‘Lost Colony’ of Roanoke Island is Found

Historian and author Scott Dawson joins Tim to talk about his team’s discovery of what actually happened to the Lost Colony of Roanoke Island on the Outer Banks. He has spent the past 11 years working with a team of archaeologists, historians, botanists and geologists to try to uncover the truth behind the story of the Lost Colony. It was August of 1590, and Englishman John White was about to return to the Roanoke...


September 11: An NYPD Story

Retired NYPD detective Chris O’Connor joins Tim to tell his story of September 11, 2001 at the World Trade Center in New York. Chris was within walking distance from the World Trade Center when the first plane hit. We talk with Chris about his story and the story of many first responders who continue to live with the after-effects of 9/11. It’s September 11th, 2001 in one of the busiest cities in the world on a...


Susan B. Anthony’s Legacy

Cassandra Peltier joins Tim to tell the story of the legacy left by Susan B. Anthony in the form of the 19th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which guaranteed the right to vote for women. America is celebrating 100 years since the 1920 passage of that amendment. Cassandra is the Executive Director of the Susan B. Anthony Birthplace Museum in Adams, Massachusetts. Millions of Americans will cast a ballot to vote...