Better Than Nuthin

Ken Root is at it again! He is unpredictable and biased against both sides. He interviews fascinating people and tells some pretty good stories. BTN is drawn from Ken’s early life on an Oklahoma farm, his fifty years in broadcasting and enchanting people he’s met and kept as friends.

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Saturday May 20, 2023

Russ Green was an Iowa kid who made his way to the top of the Ag Equipment Industry.  Upon Retirement, he didn't slow down.  He turned his attention to helping the youth and young professionals develop themselves and their businesses.
A fascinating speaker and a sincere leader.  He's still the kind of person I'd like to see in charge of corporate America.
A half hour that will inspire 4-H members and retired farmers.

Sunday May 14, 2023

Gene Millard has observed many years as a farmer.  He has keen powers of observation and even greater ability to explain and express how a farm in NW Missouri should operate.  
We talk technology that has become very complex and we talk human emotions that are just like they always have been.
He explains the reality of why he put up three wind towers on his farm:  "Just another crop." is the short summary.  But, of course, there is more.
A delightful half hour with a determined, intellectual and analytical farmer who still has passion for how he, and his family, farm the land.

Thursday Apr 27, 2023

April 27, 2023
The Mississippi River is near the crest of a historic flood.  All along the river, homes are flooded including their septic systems and wells.
Patti Ruff is the Clayton County, Iowa Sanitarian.  She is quite familiar with the impact of high water on wells and septic systems.  
The interview runs about ten minutes.   Very informative if you are worried about your water when you return to the islands. 
Ken Root

Friday Apr 14, 2023

George is a lawyer and a historian but he loves radio.  A great news voice of WHO for years.
We talk of the early days and then we jump to the characters who influenced the business.  KMA plays prominently along with WNAX.  
I couldn't resist leading him into WKRP and how it seemed like a documentary to those of us in the business.

Thursday Apr 06, 2023

Doug Spyrison is wealth of knowledge about AM Radios going back to the 1920's.  He explains designs, tube count, tube rarity and the progress of development through the 1960's when transistors revolutionized electronics.  
He also describes what will be sold at the Iowa Antique Radio and Historical Society Club Auction (IARCHS) at 10 am on May 6 in Anamosa, Iowa.  I've been to the event and it is a great learning experience but you have to keep your hands in your pockets or you will buy something.
The website for the auction is
Email for information is  

Thursday Mar 23, 2023

The Kansas City Southern Railroad will merge with the Canadian Pacific Railroad.  They are the smallest two members of the Class 1 Railroad Club.  Steenhoek, in his position with the Soy Transportation Alliance, sorts out the reasons the merger was allowed and the first Mexico to Canada ownership of a single railroad.

Thursday Mar 16, 2023

Rich Keller is a quiet, mild mannered, retired public relations professional.  But in the last few years, he has been posting on Facebook that his solo vacations have been in strange places.  
Mexico, Central and South America seem to lure him but he stays in sections of cities that most of us consider unsafe.  "No," say Rich, as he describes the kind and colorful people he has met.  "I don't speak Spanish but I get along just fine."  
This conversation is delightful as we go through his recent "adventures" within old and beautiful cities that most tourists will never visit.

Monday Mar 06, 2023

In 1999, AgriTalk devoted a program to the status of tobacco farming in the face of a multi-state settlement with cigarette companies to pay for health related damages caused by smoking.  
Tobacco farmers were going to lose much of their market in places where tobacco had been grown (legally) for four hundred years.  The total Master Settlement Agreement was over 200 billion dollars but growers feared none of that would come to them to assist in moving their farming away from the profitable tobacco crops they grew every year.
Note:  I have a posting of the original program from 1999 on my podcast series: "AgriTalk: the Root Years"  It has growers, callers and Mr. Graham Boyd, Executive Director of the North Carolina Tobacco Growers Association,  He is a guest on both shows.

Tuesday Feb 21, 2023

Should U.S. farmers look at land investment in Africa?  
That was the premise of a two week trip to look at land in South Africa, Mozambique and Zambia.  My travel companions were Maurice Clark, an investor and business partner of Steve Bruere, President of The People's Company.  Also Michael McClean, videographer.   We were escorted by Susan Payne and Koos DeKlerk, from Britain and South Africa who were working with a corporation that bought and sold farmland worldwide.
Our take on the countries and the farms.  Maurice recommended against proceeding with relationship.  We wish Koos and Susan well in their lives.

Friday Jan 27, 2023

Major car companies have announced that they will not put AM radios in their electric Vehicles (EV's).  The stated reason is electrical interference. 
My guests beg to differ.  Brian Winnikens is owner of WRDN in Durand, Wisconsin and Gene Millard was manager of KFEQ in St Joseph, Missouri.  Both stations are AM.  Their arguments are about past value and future threat.  Millard is somewhat resigned to his fate, Winnikens is not.  He gives a call to action to keep AM and FM radio FREE!

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