tv Charlie Rose Bloomberg August 4, 2015 9:00pm-10:01pm EDT
>> from our studios in new york city, this is charlie rose. al: ben carson is a neurosurgeon who has authored books. one of the books was made into a television program about his life. earlier this year, he announced his candidacy for president of the united states. critics anded by admirers is that he has no experience.
they disagree on whether it is a credential or liability. we are pleased to welcome dr. benjamin carson to the table. thank you. al hunt: we know you are a great surgeon. you operated on our son. america has not elected a president with no political experience. why would ben carson be different? thecarson: if you look at political experience of everyone in congress today, al: it comes out to under 9000 years. yet, where has that gotten us? it is possible to gain experience. this country rose from nowhere to the pinnacle of the world quickly. al hunt: we have had presidents with political experience.
reagan, bush, roosevelt. dr. carson: you can get experience from lots of different areas. al hunt: would it be different if you wanted to hire a baltimore ravens coach with no football background or take a smart person with no medical background and say, we are going to have you do brain surgery. it requires an enormous amount of knowledge to become a neurosurgeon. it is not the kind of knowledge that you acquire in a year, two years, three years, four years, or even five years. that is not true of politics. a lot of people want to believe it is true. in fact, it is not true. there are people who have been in politics for decades and you never see them coming up with any solutions.
al hunt: it is an asset, is what you are saying. dr. carson: what we need are problem solvers who have the ability to surround themselves with political experience. if you go to washington, d.c., and you open up the engine, the immediate response is to shut it back down because it is so complex and intricate. i do not want to spend 15 years learning the intricacies of the system. what i want to do is concentrate on the way it is supposed to be . how does the constitution says it is supposed to work? i can get people who know the intricacies of the engine. al hunt: you have been doing this for more than a year. what have you learned about yourself and america that you did not know a couple of years ago? i learned about
america is that there are a lot of people who are frightened. they are very unhappy about the direction and they feel they are losing the country. a lot of people have even given up. i have learned about myself that cannot do what i want to do, which is sit back and relax. al hunt: you are never going to sit back and relax. dr. carson: my wife was planning on it. my wife said that after a decade of 16 hour days, i finally get my husband back. knowing what could potentially happen to the next generation, it would be impossible to relax. al hunt: in the early stages, you made a number of gaffes. you said that being gay was a choice and you paralleled obamacare to slavery, even some parallels to the nazis.
.ou have pretty much ended that is that because of something you have learned or do you have tough handlers? dr. carson: i learned that when you use certain terms and phrases people cannot hear , anything beyond that. for instance, take the "nazi" comment. my point was that most of the people in germany did not believe in what hitler was doing. did they open their mouths? no. did they say anything? did they try to stop it? they did not. therefore you can have good , intentions and, if you do not do something, you may as well sit down. al hunt: it was interpreted that we were moving the same way as nazi germany did. dr. carson: of course not.
my point, if people listen to what you are saying, have a different take away and they will not if you use certain phrases. al hunt: donald trump dominates everything these days and has pulled ahead. up until him, you were the only other genuine outsider non-politician. for those who want that, why ben carson instead of donald trump? what do you offer that he does not offer? dr. carson: uh, that will be something that i think should be defined by the voters coming up. al hunt: make the case. dr. carson: the case i will make is that i have spent a great deal of time solving complex problems, problems that no one has ever been able to solve before. it is not necessarily because i'm the smartest person who ever existed. it is because you know how to put together the right kinds of resources to solve complex problems. al hunt: couldn't you say the same thing about holding hotels and golf courses?
dr. carson: let me continue. al hunt: i'm sorry. dr. carson: there are few who will be on the stage to have spent more times in corporate boardrooms than i have. i have figured out how to make things run efficiently in this country and internationally. i'm not aware of anyone who has put together a nonprofit that, as you know, nine out of 10 of them fail, but as you know ours has succeeded and won major national awards that are only given to one organization. that requires a lot of organizational skill and know-how.
al hunt: it is hard to see the donald in the operating room. he is your friend. do you agree with him? guest: most of the things, i would say there is harmony. this is a marathon. it is not a sprint. over the course of time, people will hear the solutions for various things. not just myself and donald trump, but the entire gamut. they get to know who we truly are, i think people will make the right decisions. al hunt: we will get to those solutions. you have been forthright about criticizing democrats for political correctness and playing the race card on occasion. you have been critical on that. dr. carson: not just democrats. anybody. al hunt: donald trump started a demonstrably false charge that barack obama was not born in
america. it is impossible to imagine him doing that against a white politician. does that bother you? i don't know that it was in racial towns. -- tones. that of all, let me put out on the table that i don't believe that barack obama was born someone else. al hunt: it has been proven that he wasn't. dr. carson: right. i can understand that somebody who specifically blocks a lot of his records would cause somebody to become suspicious. i do understand that. it wasn't something that just came out of the blue. al hunt: you don't think that was loony like 9/11 truthers? ,dr. carson: here's my point. why if you are running for the president of the united states,
why would you go through such s to hide such important parts of your history? al hunt: i don't think he really did. guest: who did then? al hunt: i don't think i have ever heard anyone raise the question of john kerry being born in america. dr. carson: let me tell you why i bring up particular issue up. having spent many years in academia, when somebody goes to columbia university, that is a big jump. it would be informative to find out how that occurred. when you hide something like that, it makes people suspicious. al hunt: i am not sure what was hidden. let's move on to those issues you were talking about. we will start with the economy.
you propose a 10% cut in spending across the board other than defense. is that basically it? dr. carson: whether it is 10% or another percentage, it has to be across the board. the reason we have such difficulty getting things cut in washington is because everybody has a pet project. al hunt: cutting social security 10%? dr. carson: i would cut all programs or parts that support that program. let me tell you about social security. the way it is working right now, as you know, we will run out of money in the late 2020s. we need to do something to stabilize it. now, when we put that program into place, the average age of death was 63. and now, we are approaching 80.
al hunt: would you raise the age and cut benefits? guest: i would offer people the ability to opt out of the check. that would be done in lieu of a tax credit. now only certain people would be , able to take advantage of that. there is 20% who could take advantage of that and that would alleviate a lot of the strain on the program and give you the possibility of enacting gradual raises for people under the age of 55. over that age, i think we probably should not touch it. al hunt: would you cut medical research? nih? guest: when i say cutting everything across the board, this is what i mean. there is no other way to get it done. al hunt: not defense, right? dr. carson: what i would do with
defense is you have to bring defense back to the appropriate level. you must recognize that the current administration has cut $1 trillion out of defense. al hunt: when you say they are going to build ,f-35s, there's going to be a new long range bomber, all of those are sacrosanct? you might cut some of them and not cut others? dr. carson: let me put this into perspective. the navy, the vessels, they are at the smallest level. in a recent testimony on capitol hill, the commandant of the marine corps said that half of the non-deployed units are not combat-ready. when you look at our air force,
it is in dismal shape. you look at the nuclear arsenal , it is archaic. you look at what vladimir putin is doing with the russian arsenal and what the chinese are doing. they are building new aircraft carriers. they are trying to dominate space now. when you stop and think about -- al hunt: you would increase spending for space? dr. carson: when you think about the world we are living in and the hostilities that are directed towards of -- of us we , can stick our head in the sand and say, "everything will be ok." or, we can look around and recognize that, if we do not get defense right, nothing else will matter. al hunt: let me ask other questions on the tax side. you said that you favor a flat tax between 10%-15%.
dr. carson: a proportional tax. i like using 10%. it is easy to do the math. everybody pays. to get rid of all the deductions and loopholes. those are the things that make the system unfair. al hunt: no charitable right offs? dr. carson: people say that all charity will go away. is that really true? when we enacted the tax, were people not charitable? of course they were. they will continue to be. al hunt: would you do away with
the earned income tax credit for the working poor? dr. carson: i would get rid of all of them. when you have them, people migrate to them and they manipulate things to take advantage of them. we can find better ways to take care of people. when we're talking about poor people, for whom i have compassion, i recognize that they would appreciate more than a pat on the head, fixing the economy and giving them a ladder for them to climb up and become part of the fabric of the success of this nation. al hunt: one thing that we do not know about dr. carson is who he would turn to for economic advice. what former or top economic official would president carson turn to for advice? i like art laffer. i have had good conversations with him. i talked to university professors of economics, whose
names i will release when i have permission to do so. not only that, i have had a number of interactions with people in the business world, having spent 18 years on the kellogg board. al hunt: anyone strike your fancy? dr. carson: you look at someone like jim senegal, one of the founders of cosco. even though on a number of political things, we do not necessarily agree in terms of , business and economics, he is a genius. al hunt: how about donald trump? do you put him in the carson cabinet? dr. carson: there is no one who is running that i would not consider as being helpful. al hunt: let me ask you about
national security and foreign policy. who would be the officials that you would really turn to for advice on national security and foreign policy? dr. carson: again, until i get permission to release -- the one i have is general dees. he has a an enormous amount of experience. i have talked to a number of , many of them whom you know, as well as people in the cia and experts in foreign affairs. i think everyone will be delightfully surprised during the debates when we get to foreign affairs. al hunt: starting on thursday. what is the greatest national security threat facing america? dr. carson: we have so many.
, on dayut it this way one of a carson administration, i would be looking to do everything that we can to quickly shore up the military , and i am concerned about jihadists here and abroad. in the longer term, i am more concerned about vladimir putin and the chinese. i think there are multiple threats. we also have to look at the fact that our grid is vulnerable and old. all it would take is an explosion of a nuclear weapon in the atmosphere. we do not have the backup systems necessary to protect us. al hunt: lindsey graham says that he would send 10,000 ground troops to take on isis.
you said you would be opening sending ground troops. does that sound sufficient? too few? what is the carson doctrine? dr. carson: the carson doctrine is understanding why we need ground troops. the jihadists want to establish a caliphate. it requires land. they have acquired half of iraq and one third of syria. they are getting footholds in tunisia, nigeria, and other parts of the world. this is a reason why they are victorious and they are able to attract people. we need to stop that perception. in order to stop that, we have to be able to take the land from them. what kind of force would that require? dr. carson: what kind of force would that require?
i would do that in consultation with the generals. i think it is relatively foolish for me to throw a number out. al hunt: some people might say we need 50,000. dr. carson: you could. when you take the appropriate leadership role, the coalitions we talk about will begin to come. people like to get on a bandwagon when it is winning. when we are hanging back, they are not going out there. al hunt: if putin invaded ukraine, what would a carson response be? dr. carson: i think he is already responsible for a couple of things. bear in mind that ukraine was a nuclear state and they abandoned
the nuclear arsenal because we said that we would protect them. now, we have had eastern ukraine invaded. have we protected them? no, we have not. we will not even give them offensive weapons. i would support them with offensive weapons and other things. al hunt: do you mean american forces? dr. carson: if necessary. we have to be people of our word. everybody else is looking at what we are doing with israel and ukraine. if our friends cannot count on us, how do we develop friends? you get more of what you pay attention to. right now we seem to pay more attention to our enemies and we seem to get more of them. al hunt: you are a man of deep faith and you have then since you were teenager. do you believe that god called upon you to be president?
dr. carson: let me put it to you this way -- i have sought wisdom and i prayed a lot about it because it was not something i was gung ho to do. i said, lord, if you want me to do this, open the doors. i'm not going to push them open. all the pundits and experts said, a neil fight, someone who has no connections -- it's impossible, don't even think about it, and yet, the doors have opened. youid, lord, as long as open those doors, i will walk through them. if you close them, i will sit down. al hunt: safe travels. thank you for joining us. dr. carson: thank you. always wonderful to be with you. al hunt: we will be back in just a moment. ♪
in this scene, the character encounters problems with the internet company. >> he did not fix it. >> do you have the repair number? >> i do have it. >> it is not coming up. i will get you another one. ready? a as in apropos. s as in shame. l as in llama. o as in orifice. i will send you to tear to. tier 2. ever is, because what happening here is not working. >> hello, how may i provide excellent service? >> you can fix the internet. >> let me apologize for the
problems you have been experiencing. i'm going to help you. my name is jeff. >> really? what is your real name? >> jeffrey. i think we know what is happening. >> would you restart the modem? >> i have done that already. that is not the issue. how can i trust you if you are lying about who you are? schedule ang to specialist to come to your home tomorrow. is there anything else, sir. >> yeah. >> you are full of --, jeff. >> what a -- hole. marc: i have not seen that in a while. that is funny. charlie: do you think about that as an actor, comedian, or a journalist?
marc: comedy is all i wanted to do and i still feel that i am a standup comic. i know that a lot of success and attention came from talking to people. i am still wary of calling because i donalist not see that i do that. charlie rose: it is not that you don't believe you have those qualities. it is that you believe you are a comedian. marc: when i interview or talk to people, it is my understanding -- you are a journalist. charlie rose: no, i am a comedian. marc: you came up as a journalist and i thought it would be wrong to assume that. you talk about being selfless and objective. there are certain tenets of journalism i never learned and never followed. charlie rose: i was not trained as a journalist, and i know a
lot of journalist who would trained as journalist are not question and answer people. it is different competency. marc: for me it was driven by , emotional need. i first got labeled as a journalist when i interviewed carlos mencia and i did not ask the right questions and he sort of steamrolled me. i had to do a second interview because the one i got was not -- so i had to go back. i had i had to do a more interrogative and conscious questioning. charlie rose: driven by curiosity. marc: by that, and also to make sure that we talked about the issue. it is rare that there are issues to be talked about with my guess. charlie rose: the president. that was an exception? marc: yes there were things that
, had to be addressed and i was not looking for a political interview. charlie: what were you looking for? marc: i was given the opportunity and the white house reached out. charlie rose: what did they say? marc: they talked to my producer, brandon mcdonald. they said, we are thinking about doing something. it was not clear. you are on the radar and some of us here like the show. i do not know what is going to happen we are just saying, "hi." , it was great that someone listened in the white house. we stayed entire and then it became clear that something was going to happen and i said, i , can do this. i was honored. then it came down to, it's happening. brenda said that he wanted to come to the garage. i was like, that is ridiculous. they said that he wanted the
experience of that. so what i was concerned with most is connecting with him. i knew that i could not do a softball interview. i knew it had to be somewhat in-depth, but i was hoping to find who he was or is as a person in a genuine way. that is sort of what i ended up doing. it was a little bit trickier. charlie rose: what is the difference between a hardball and softball interview? i think people use those terms and ill fitting. marc: i think that we live in a clickbait culture. i don't do that. i am respectful. for me, i don't know what hardball is. for me, it is a question that i know i have to ask and it is uncomfortable and how do i engage after that?
charlie rose: what question would you ask the president that you would call hardball because it might be uncomfortable? politicians, you can ask one and they will answer what ever they like. i asked him very directly in my own sort of framing about what i saw as a problem with politics. i am not a wonky guy. i did politics, but i was more reactionary than research. i said that there was a part of the presidency that was middle-management. what i was trying to discuss is sort of corporate occupation of the government and who does he work for. i think he got that, but he did not address it directly. i was nervous to as that question because i thought it would be insulting and away. i think that he got it and did
not address where i wanted to go with it. again when you have one hour , with the guy and you know that he will take some time if he wants to to answer a question, i had to get a lot of stuff in. the bigger issue with obama is that, i am sitting at home and i read his first book. that's the kind of prep i did for this president is to read the book he wrote before he was president. it was an exploration of his identity, racially, and who he is. charlie rose: it was about his father. marc: i get home from hawaii and we had promoted the show. my producer flew out to los angeles to met with the secret service and got that stuff going. and then the horrible thing in , charleston happened. we were sitting there and i thought he would have to stay and deal with this. we accepted that.
what are we going to do? he is the president. we waited it out, and the next morning, they said he was coming. it was not clear if he was coming to my house. i thought it was heavy. then, the white house said he would come. so, we had to address that. there was going to be three days before we put the interview out and he would be addressing it. it was the right thing to do. charlie: absolutely. marc: i knew that we had to address the supreme court stuff and charleston. it was an incredible change of tone. these guys are professionals, you know that. when he comes into my driveway, was tinted with -- tented
with snipers on my neighbor's roof. i had to ask them if we could do that. my neighbor was retired and he was thrilled. he was like, "are you kidding?" charlie rose: secret service for a day. marc: he walks in. it was an overwhelming moment. you stay focused. it was solitary. there was no distraction. my garage is cluttered for a reason. there were 15-20 secret service people around and all i could think about was that i had to connect with barack obama. the point being is that when he came up i could tell that there , were a lot of people coming up the driveway and you see the president go, "hey, marc." he pats me on the back and is like, we are going to have a good time, right? i am like, i don't know. some bad things happened in the last couple of days.
he was prepared to have a lighthearted and slightly candid conversation. within a few minutes, after he becausee a narcissist there is artwork of people -- that people have done of me. i brought that up and i am not sure that he knew that we were going to do this. charlie: or expected it from you? marc: exactly. out of that came a focused and -- charlie rose: human response. guest: it was a powerful statement about race and a powerful condemnation of guns in how they are not regulated in this country. he said that the nra has a strong hold on congress that will probably not be shaken. there was real stuff there. charlie: it was exactly the
place to go. you knew exactly what to ask him. what is going on in this country? it is one incident after another. this one is atrocious because it happened at a place of warship -- of worship and it happened with young people losing their lives. it is not the first or the last incident. it continues to happen. marc: that's right. i think he was very straight about that. he said that this does not happen in other places. charlie rose: i think you can do it because you are real. it is not like, "i am out to get you." i am out to understand. marc: he said some beautiful stuff about fearlessness and interesting stuff about the nature of democracy. i think that was in retrospect
the most interesting thing about my experience with him. i did feel a real person and that he was a thoughtful guy. almost more thoughtful than you would expect. he did not strike me like some presidents where you like, "i would like to have a beer with this guy." i imagine if you went to a party and saw obama you would be like, "what is this guy thinking about?" he has a lot of things on his mind. he said the reason i am doing this is to get people interested in politics. charlie rose: get people interested in my politics. marc: i think he is discouraged with the distance. whether you are on the right or the left, after a first term and well into into the second term, you detach from the president and he is a guy who makes speeches. the left decided that they were disappointed and the right is the right. i think that he felt
respect to other countries, all of that. he believes it in conversations with iran. he sent people to see if the iranians would want to have a conversation to get somewhere. they got somewhere. he believes in dialogue. he also thinks about, why is it that we can't have more dialogue? he said that he cannot talk about certain things because they get so polarized. if we talk about income inequality, people say it is class warfare. it is not class warfare. we are talking about issues that we need to talk about. i think he believes in that. he reaches out to people like you because -- marc: i'm going to let him talk. charlie rose: and because you are wise enough to have a real conversation. you are not trying to score off of the president.
you are trying to get him to think out loud. marc: right. i think that what he said in the interview about the echo chamber and the reason dialogue has diminished is because it becomes about class warfare and there is no dialogue. it was interesting in his use of the n-word to make a point about using that in relation to progress in racial relations in the country. later in the interview, he talked about the echo chamber in a diminishing force and it happened exactly with that soundbite. charlie rose: i had thought about that. that was the soundbite. you could walk out of there and no what the lede was. marc: right. that was all they took out of it. not the meat. that there has been progress but you cannot base it on trivial things.
charlie rose: you said, all i wanted to do was to connect with the guy and then, as the days go on, "i am talking with the freaking president. the president was at my house!" marc: it was unbelievable. i cannot believe it. there is secret service all over. i am waiting and playing guitar and secret service says they will give me a heads up when he is five minutes away. the plan was that he was going take a -- the carpool, what is it called? all the cars. yeah. so, the motorcade. the motorcade.
marc: right. thank god! he is going to take the motorcade from beverly hills and fly to pasadena, park in the rose bowl parking lot. they were going to give me the heads up. we had five sets of headphones running into the garage and outside. we are standing on the deck and you see the osprey and the secret service guy is like, "he is coming." i don't need a heads up. that is his vehicle. it was pretty exciting. the neighborhood was quiet. there was not a car parked. people had lined the street under a weird tent. charlie rose: what is the aftermath of all this? do you hear from the president? marc: we talk every day.
charlie rose: he had john stewart to the white house. marc: i wish i could tell you that he texts me. it is like, "enough already!" his relationship -- he left his to-go cup. this is the fundamental difference between me and jon. he has an outlet that is constantly in the dialogue and the daily show is an institution, and he had that relationship with the president. me, this guy leaves a cup and i am like, how do i frame this? i have a glass dome with the president's cup and his napkin. charlie rose: you can look at it
but not touch it. marc: that's right. that is what i got. it is a profound honor to sit with a sitting president. there was no restrictions on me. there was no pre-interview or management. charlie rose: you had time. i did 45 minutes with him and they called and said, what are you doing on sunday? i went down and we had this conversation. he could only do 45 minutes because he was flying off to a recital of one of his kids. the point is, that is a lengthy interview for this president. and, it is those times that you really hope you can get to see the guy. more so than you do -- marc: did you feel like you did? charlie rose: i did. marc: when you have been doing this long enough, it is like, "was that really him?" it was weird. he put me at ease fairly quickly.
he planted himself inside of the environment. he looked around. he took it in. he commented on it. and then, it was like, ok, he is in the room. he is not thinking about the next thing. he is here. charlie rose: where does it go from here? marc: where it goes is, after all is said and done, i do a specific type of show and i get back to business. i was asked by -- one person asked me this question as a journalist, and i wish that i could remember his name. he said, do you interview candidates now? i interviewed the president. i'm not going to talk to candidates. i'm not going to get involved in politics again. are you crazy? charlie rose: if they get elected, they can call me. marc: that's right. or, if they were once
president. charlie rose: i mean, tell me more about where you take they are and what makes them give people who might not have had access to the mainstream a chance to be part of the national dialogue, so much so that the president wants to talk to you. is it the freedom to be your own boss? marc: for me, my podcast was born out of a certain desperation. i had done a little radio and was doing comedy and it was not , happening. the medium existed and it was not popular. it had been around for a wild. -- for a while. i asked the guy who produced my radio if we could figure out how to do this and he said, "sure." we just committed to a schedule, monday and thursday, that we would honor no matter what. he had done some radio and i had done a little stop we knew that .
we knew that we needed to have the regularity. so, i think that what ultimately happened over interviews was -- who knows what makes someone compelling in that format? a lot of people can do radio, and anyone can do a podcast. why does it take off? guests, the way i did it, and the medium was growing well i -- while i was in it. i helped the medium and it became visible because of the guests that i had and the way that i was doing it. what is happening, in terms of a paradigm shifting from terrestrial radio and more people seeking this out to , listen on your own time schedule and build a relationship with these talents who are in this medium -- like anything else, there are thousands of people doing this. who is going to transcend? i don't know. that is an open marketplace. charlie: it is. when you hear it, you know there
is some x factor. it makes it distinctive, different, and compelling. marc: i'm glad i have it. i do not know what it is. charlie rose: you are who you are. marc: you can't have a system, because i'm doing some speaking now. you want to be encouraging and preface it with, "that is not going to work out." it was a mixture of desperation and talent, and a certain amount of skill. charlie rose: the other thing about it is that everybody in the world thinks, "i would like to do that and i could do it well." i can talk. marc: give me the mike, i am ready to go. charlie rose: and then, seven
minutes in, they are wondering where to go from here. marc: i had an interview where he was waiting for questions. it was rough for me. it was harry dean stanton. i had gone to his home. i don't think he knew me or the show. it was set up to a publicist. i had watched a documentary on him. charlie: he is an iconic actor. marc: a great actor. he had been through a lot of hollywood history. i watch this documentary, and they could barely get him to talk. the arrogance of me, i was like, "i will get him." charlie: and? marc: it was tough. he was doing a crossword and smoking. charlie rose: did he know it was tough?
marc: of course not. charlie: he was depending on you. marc: i made the mistake where i felt that i had to somehow explain myself. i had a hard time and did not get through. i learned a big lesson that day. i did it and included the filmmaker of the documentary on the broadcast. people said to me that he sounds like my grandpa. what did you expect from him? what you think he is going to give you? charlie rose: i don't think clint eastwood would be different. marc: that's right. he is an interesting and mysterious guy. he is a kind of buddhist dude. he said that he did not remember movies he was in. i think i might have put him off a little bit. charlie rose: when he was at this table, he was smoking. marc: how did you do?
if the yen is to gain global status. plus, build it and they will come. he urges india to raise spending. they will invested infrastructure is there. let us know what you do get today's top stories by following us on twitter. we saw a bit of a retreat, but they don't agree now, david. the worst, let's hope is behind us. things did start a little slower wasn't asite i guess robust this morning. if you things to note, we continue to follow this big story that the imf is considering pushing back that decision whether to include the fdr.