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.

Listen on:

  • Apple Podcasts
  • Podbean App
  • Spotify
  • TuneIn + Alexa
  • iHeartRadio


2 days ago

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!

Thursday Dec 22, 2022

Last summer, I traveled to Great Bend, Kansas and spent three days reporting on Industrial Hemp.  You can find in 2 podcast from mid year.  The Baldwin family has been growing the crop since 2017 and holding this conference each year to explain how they support growers who want to sign a contract with them to deliver the crop the following fall.
Melissa Nelson-Baldwin remains their spokesperson and a leader in the agronomics of this new, old, crop.  She talks of getting rid of the "marijuana" stigma as they focus strictly on showing growers how they can grow and profit from Industrial Hemp.  
We discuss the issues facing hemp farming.  We talk of the future and the areas to be addressed at the conference.
Kan-Equip Conference Facility (IH dealership)
10 am until 2 pm
January 14, 2023
Southbend Industrial Hemp dot com

Thursday Dec 15, 2022

Dan plays two songs and talks about his determination to write country music. He brings a lot of guitar skill to the table and a family history that is rock solid.
We swap stories but they all tie together.
He has written a song called: "Sara Gets A Second Chance"  It is about waiting for an organ transplant.  Very moving.  It just takes one miracle.
To download the song:

Thursday Dec 08, 2022

In 1981, Mike Smith founded a private weather forecasting service that soon became computer based in its single location forecast distribution.  He enjoyed strong popularity as a television meteorologist beginning in the 1970's at Channel 4 in Oklahoma City, then Wichita, Kansas, St. Louis and back to Wichita where he started Weatherdata.  
Smith testified, as an expert witness, in a trial following the crash of United Flight 191 at DFW Airport in the 1980's.  The plane flew through a small thunderstorm that produced a strong downburst and pushed the airplane into the ground.  His accounting of the events explaining what happened, and who was at fault, is vivid. 
He also wrote a book on weather warnings and the science of meteorology as it developed during his career.  An excellent read but even better when this animated and excited man tells you what still gets him going every day.  Smith pays tribute to Dr Ted Fujita, calling him the smartest meteorological scientist ever born and crediting Fujita with developing the science of forensic meteorology.
I spoke with Mike Smith in an earlier podcast, with this one focusing on the bureaucratic battles within government agencies and between private sector meteorologists and public sector employees.

Monday Nov 28, 2022

The Saturday Morning Farmers Market in downtown Des Moines, Iowa is unbelievable.  Twenty Five Thousand People stroll through the blocks and blocks of vendors who are selling everything from fresh produce to baked goods to breakfast burritos, to art and specialties.  Musicians are on every corner and the atmosphere is stimulating and soothing all at once.
Kelly Foss was the Executive Director of the market for twenty years.  She and I became friends near the beginning of her tenure and she tells me the progress that has been made over the two decades since.  We also speak of some of the unforgettable people who were at the market each week.
Ranked in the top ten farmers markets in the nation.  

Friday Nov 18, 2022

Dennis Schneider and his son were unloading a bin that had clumps of corn that would only come out if someone went in with a shovel and broke the crust.  
Dennis had a "master plan" to use his cell phone to call son if he got in trouble.  His son was in control of the large auger outside.  When Dennis slid down into the corn, he couldn't call before he was trapped to his neck.
His rescue took anxious hours as he struggled to breathe.   Schneider tells his story because he says God told him to do so.  
Ben Nuelle interviewed Schneider in 2015 but the risk of grain entrapment continues today.

Copyright 2022 All rights reserved.

Podcast Powered By Podbean

Version: 20221013