History

Jack Barsky: Undercover KGB Agent in America

Former Soviet KGB undercover spy Jack Barsky joins Tim to tell his story, and his long journey from Soviet Cold War operative to American citizen. Jack spent ten years in America as an undercover agent for the Soviet Union at the height of the Cold War. He’s the author of a book called, “Deep Under Cover: My Secret Life & Tangled Allegiances as a KGB Spy in America.” And he’s the subject of the podcast called The Agent.

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Encore: Nadine Strossen – Free Speech Over Censorship

Nadine Strossen joins Tim to talk about how to fight “hate speech” or harmful speech without censorship. She’s a best-selling author and a Professor of Constitutional Law at New York Law School. She’s also the first woman national President of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).  In this episode, she talks about private company censorship, the challenges, some solutions and all of it as addressed in her book “Hate: Why we should resist it with free speech, not censorship. This episode was first released April 12, 2021.

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The ‘Silk Road’ Story: Busting the Dark Web

Former FBI Cyber Special Agent Chris Tarbell joins Tim to talk about cyber crime and some of his most groundbreaking cases, including the Silk Road that centered on crypto currency and drug trafficking. And  they talk about the take-down of the “Anonymous” hacktivist collective. Chris’s specialty is cyber investigations. He was the lead investigator on some of the more notorious cyber security crime cases in recent memory.

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Seven Voices: Your Favorite Holiday Memories

This week is Hanukkah and Christmas. We’re in the peak of the American holiday season, which started at Thanksgiving. So, it is with this in mind that I thought I’d take to the streets of Pittsburgh once again and talk to people about their holiday memories. That’s what this special holiday edition of the Shaping Opinion podcast is about.

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Encore: Remembering the Sears Wish Book

Writer, editor, producer and actor Jason Liebig joins Tim to talk about the Sears Wishbook. Jason is the creator of a website called WishbookWeb.com, which has archived complete, high-quality scans of Sears Wishbooks and other holiday catalogues going back to 1933. In this episode, we talk about a holiday tradition sure to bring a smile to your face.  This episode was first released on December 10, 2018.

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Martin Dugard: Taking Berlin

New York Times bestselling author Martin Dugard joins Tim to talk about his newest book called “Taking Berlin: The Bloody Race to Defeat the Third Reich.” It’s the story of the Allies’ campaign across Europe during World War II as seen through the eyes of five key figures. This book is part of the “Taking” trilogy on World War II, and follows Martin’s work with Bill O’Reilly on the popular “Killing” series of books.

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Encore: The Story Behind Those 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. This encore episode was originally released November 30, 2020.

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James R. Fitzgerald: Hunting the Unabomber

Former FBI profiler James R. Fitzgerald joins Tim to talk about his key role in cracking one of the most notorious serial killer cases in American history – the Unabomber.  James was involved in the pioneering of something called forensic linguistics. The FBI used this profiling approach to identify and capture one of the most notorious serial killers in American history, Ted Kaczynski, otherwise known as the Unabomber.

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Aaron Mackey: Swiping Your Privacy

Attorney Aaron Mackey joins Tim to talk about how intelligence agencies, law enforcement and private companies are buying your data as part of larger surveillance operations. Is this against the spirit of the Fourth Amendment rights to privacy?  Aaron works for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, or the EFF. The foundation is the leading nonprofit organization defending civil liberties in the digital world. It champions user privacy, free expression, and innovation. In this episode, Aaron talks about your privacy. How much you have, who’s invading it, how they’re doing it. And most importantly, what they’re doing with your personal information.

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Worth Parker: Escape from Afghanistan

U.S. Marine veteran Worth Parker joins Tim to talk about an unprecedented story that centers on the shadow evacuation of Afghanistan in 2021. The operation was conducted by veterans and others from throughout all of the U.S. military branches to evacuate civilians caught in the chaos of the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan.  Worth is a retired United States Marine turned writer, who tells us about his role in what we’ve dubbed, “Escape from Afghanistan.”

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Larry Csonka: A Football Story

Football legend Larry Csonka joins Tim to talk about his life and what football has done for his life. Larry’s a former fullback with the Miami Dolphins and the New York Giants. He was a Super Bowl MVP. He’s an NFL Hall of Famer and a College Football Hall of Famer. He’s a two-time Super Bowl Champion – a cornerstone of the NFL’s only undefeated team – with the Miami Dolphins. And he’s the author of a new book called, “Larry Csonka: Head On: A Memoir.”

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Andrew Bustamante: Inside the World of Covert Intelligence

Former covert CIA intelligence officer and U.S. Air Force combat veteran Andrew Bustamante joins Tim to talk about his life as a CIA operative, the lessons he’s learned, and we get some insights into the world of the CIA. Today, Andrew is a Fortune 10 corporate advisor, and he’s the man behind the EveryDay Spy self-improvement program, and the host of the EveryDay Espionage podcast.

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John Abramson: Behind the Curtain at Big Pharma

Author, doctor and college professor John Abramson joins Tim to talk about his book called, “Sickening: How Big Pharma Broke American Health Care and How We can Repair It.” John has been on the faculty of Harvard Medical School for over 25 years, and prior to that spent many years in private practice. In this episode, John about America’s healthcare system, which often traces its roots to how drugs are approved for use and marketed to both doctors and consumers.

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Josh Chin: The Emerging Surveillance State

Wall Street Journal Deputy Bureau Chief for China and author Josh Chin joins Tim to talk about his new book he co-authored with fellow WSJ journalist Liza Lin. It’s called “Surveillance State: Inside China’s Quest to Launch a New Era of Social Control.” Josh tells about how China has led the way into a new era of mass surveillance on a scale the world has never seen. And it’s not limited to China.

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Eight Voices: Where Were You on 9/11?

In this episode we hear from eight people who talked with Tim to answer the question, “Where were you on 9/11?” But the real focus of this episode is on you, your experience with 9/11.  Just as importantly, even if you were too young to remember or weren’t even born yet, this episode is all about why 9/11 still matters to this day, even if you don’t realize it.

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