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Bob Graham's Call to Service
Former Florida Sen. Bob Graham, chair, Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism, testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Dec. 11, 2008, before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. (AP)

Former Senator Bob Graham of Florida testifies on Capitol Hill on Dec. 11, 2008. (AP)

Here’s a paradox. We hear a lot these days about populism. But as former Senator and Florida Governor Bob Graham points out, real participation in politics — especially by young Americans, and especially in local politics — remains dismally low.

Graham cites a lot of reasons. Civics courses, if they’re taught at all, are boring. Our media and political parties aren’t doing enough. And the only way to learn how to participate, he says, is to try it out for yourself.

So he’s written a how-to guide. This hour, On Point: Senator Bob Graham and his “owner’s manual” for American democracy.

You can join the conversation. Are you involved in your town hall meetings, or did you throw your hands up long ago? How much do you know about how your local, state and federal governments work?

You can join the conversation. What’s your story of friendship through the years? Tell us what you think — here on this page, on Twitter, and on Facebook.

Guests:

Joining us from Miami, Florida, is former Senator Bob Graham. He represented Florida as a Democrat in the U.S. Senate from 1987 to 2005 and was governor of Florida from 1979 to 1987. He’s now chairman of the Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism and also chairs the Graham Center for Public Service at the University of Florida. His new book is “America, The Owner’s Manual: Making Government Work For You.”

Joining us from Leesburg, Virginia, is Lori Waters, member of the Board of Supervisors for Loudoun County, VA, representing the Broad Run District. She is also former executive director of the Eagle Forum, a conservative interest group founded by Phyllis Schlafly in 1967.

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ONPOINT
TODAY
Dec 18, 2014
This handout photo from the Twitter account of Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz. shows Alan Gross arriving at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014. The US and Cuba have agreed to re-establish diplomatic relations and open economic and travel ties, marking a historic shift in U.S. policy toward the communist island after a half-century of enmity dating back to the Cold War, American officials said Wednesday. (AP)

Following months of secret talks the US will restore full diplomatic relations with Cuba after more than fifty years.

Dec 18, 2014
A poster for the movie "The Interview" is carried away by a worker after being pulled from a display case at a Carmike Cinemas movie theater, Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP)

A big Sony hack gets weirder and wider. And Hollywood and Homeland Security are on edge.

RECENT
SHOWS
Dec 17, 2014
Germany's Andre Schuerrle, left, celebrates scoring his side's 6th goal as Brazil's goalkeeper Julio Cesar reacts during the World Cup semifinal soccer match between Brazil and Germany at the Mineirao Stadium in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Tuesday, July 8, 2014.  Germany went on to win the World Cup championship later that month. (AP)

From the Sochi Olympics and Ray Rice to Lebron’s return to Cleveland, we’ll unpack a big year in sports.

 
Dec 17, 2014
Relatives of a victim of a Taliban attack in a school, mourn over her lifeless body at a hospital in Peshawar, Pakistan, Tuesday, Dec. 16, 2014. Taliban gunmen stormed a military-run school in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar on Tuesday, killing and wounding scores, officials said, in the highest-profile militant attack to hit the troubled region in months. (AP)

The Taliban take responsibility for killing more than 100 Pakistani schoolchildren. We ask why there, why now.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
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Friday, Dec 12, 2014

On listener engagement, the meeting of trans-Atlantic royalty and the elusive origins of the chicken. (We promise this feed hasn’t been taken over the BBC…yet)

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Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014

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