Venezuela crisis and Senate Candidate – (Green) Neal Gale

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Protesters attends a rally against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro outside United Nations headquarters in New York, Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

What to look for on Smart Talk Tuesday, October, 2, 2018:


The country of Venezuela, situated on the northern end of South America, is a topographically diverse and resource rich nation. The capital Caracas is the nation’s center of industry, commerce, education, and tourism. In the last century, Venezuela transformed from a relatively poor farming society to a rapidly urbanizing one, made possible by the discovery and exploitation of huge petroleum reserves.

Some estimates list Venezuela as having 20% of the global oil reserves and during the 21st century they became one of the world’s largest exporters of oil. During that time, oil production also became nationalized and what was once a bright future, became plagued with corruption and mismanagment. Many problems affecting the oil industry are directly attributed to the rise and control of Hugo Chavez in the late 1990’s and exacerbated his successor Nicol├ís Maduro, who remains in power.

Today, there is widespread social upheaval, rapid and uncontrolled inflation, and a population migration into neighboring countries that is threatening to destabalize the entire region. Additionally, economic sanctions imposed by the Trump administration in the spring has created an environment primed for other nations to step in offering aid and influence. China is filling that role.

Joining Smart Talk on Tuesday to discuss the situation in Venezuela is Dr. Evan Ellis, Latin America Research Professor, U.S. Army War College Strategic Studies Institute.

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Dr. Evan Ellis

Also on Smart Talk, the Green Party Senate candidate Neal Gale from Abington Township, Montgomery County. Smart Talk has invited the candidates for the U.S. Senate, House of Representatives and governor to appear on the program so that voters can hear where they stand on the issues. The conversations are intended to allow candidates to state their positions and to provide information to voters to help them decide which candidates to support.

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Neal Gale

12th Congressional District Candidate (D) Marc Friedenberg and Lincoln Lyceum awardee

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What to look for on Smart Talk Monday October, 1, 2018:

The 2018 mid-term election is set for Tuesday, November 6. The midterms take place in the middle of President Donald Trump’s first term and many see the election as a refenrendum on Trump. Nationally, all 435 seats in the House of Representatives and 35 of the 100 seats in the Senate will be contested. Pennsylvania voters will also decide on between candidates for governor, as well as the state House of Representatives and half the state Senate.

Smart Talk has invited the candidates for the U.S. Senate, House of Representatives and governor to appear on the program so that voters can hear where they stand on the issues. The conversations are intended to allow candidates to state their positions and to provide information to voters to help them decide which candidates to support.

The first candidate is scheduled to be on Monday’s program.

Marc Friedenberg, is a Democrat, running for the U.S. House of Representatives in the 12th Congressional District. The 12th District includes Perry, Juniata, Mifflin, Snyder, and Union Counties and parts of Northumberland and Montour Counties in the WITF listening area.

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Marc Friedenberg,is a Democrat, running for the U.S. House of Representatives in the 12th Congressional District.

Also on Monday’s Smart Talk, renowned historian and author Edward Ayers joins us to discuss new book The Thin Light of Freedom: The Civil War and Emancipation in the Heart of America. The book describes the destruction of slavery through a war that divides the nation followed by a political reconstruction that established the rights of formerly enslaved people. Dr. Ayers uses Franklin County as one of the locations that show how this era in American history transpired.

Ayers, who is the 2018 Gilder Lehrman Lincoln Prize Laureate, appears at Gettysburg College’s Lincoln Lyceum Lecture Series Wednesday night at 7.

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