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tv   Book TV  CSPAN  January 22, 2011 11:00am-12:00pm EST

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unacceptable. and one of the reasons why i'm doing this immigration, why i'm here on this panel is that i think someone has to speak for the american people, and i don't think the congress is doing a good job. and our elected officials, and then people in academia that might share my views are too intimidated to speak. [applause] ..
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and the reasons for it and that advances the conversation. that is not what happens in politics and understandably so but this could be a conversation. what do you think? let me take up the specific issues you were talking about. seems to me that -- i don't want -- elsewhere on have endorsed the position the senator has taken but for this gun rescission i try to set that aside. i am not saying here that it is the equal claims of people or all-around world. what i am saying for these purposes, because most people don't agree with that. that is another argument. i'm happy to have that argument and be on your side but let star where most american people are. which is they think we give priority is to americans.
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these people are americans. that is who they are. they are americans. and you keep constructing it as the they're not americans because of the way the law works. we know the law doesn't always work right. the law is not always fair and you keep bringing up the case of african-americans. a group we ought to their lot of attention to but historically if you look at one of the things that happen, african-americans suffer legal discrimination and one of the common justifications for that is we have to take care of the poor whites. it was an identification of who belongs. the white belongs to we will keep the african-americans marginalized and excluded, segregated. that was wrong. we all agree now, no one defends that today but it seems to me that is the exact parallel we're facing here. people who are members of
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society who live here proposal that mr. with a very specific case. are you in favor of the dream act or opposed to it? >> i have a position that is more humane than yours. my position is the dream act the way it is framed right now is very elitist because it says that it is for high school graduates that either go to college or go into the military. you have one group risking may be getting an f in class and the other risking their lives and if they make it back alive they might get citizenship. i find that very problematic. if we want to deal with people in that situation, we should deal with maybe 24 and younger and it should be the whole class. >> i agree. >> i don't know why people think this is a great deal. it is a great deal instead of going to college but what about the ones that are not going to be admitted to college because
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they dropped out of high school or the ones that are conscientious objectors. they don't want to serve in the military. i don't think that has been worked out and until that is worked out, the dream act sounds great, needs more thought. >> i want to hear something about vote world court. he didn't want to make the argument that they have things but would that be your argument? it doesn't go far enough rather than going too far? >> in other contexts i argue it is going too far but an interesting assumption for the discussion here, that states do have the right to control their own borders and what happens once illegal immigrants in what punitive measures they are allowed to take here. that particular line of argument, i have a bit of a
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problem because once you make this concession in the way you just framed it earlier that states control their borders, you can also say later that membership of social states they have to put up with. there will be tensions later on that you're generating because basically you are setting up a system where those people who are successfully evaded law enforcement eventually become members that makes me think that something else needs to be said here because i'm sympathetic to the position that we should grant amnesty to illegal immigrants but the perspective we should be taking is not that membership is a social factor people can generate themselves but really that we have to think about immigration policy not as a privilege that countries may
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or may not grant or suit particular countries's interests but we have to think about that from a global standpoint so there is a global justice standpoint from which immigration policies need to be assessed. i have tried to develop an understanding of justice that conceptualizes obligations we have in terms of what i call grounds of justice. particular context we are sharing and within which particular obligation that arise so shared membership of the state is one of them. i like the starting point. because we share a state we have particular obligations to each other. but other contexts in which we are moving, other grounds that have different principles of justice which are woven together to generate an overall theory of global justice. one is the global trading system. and interactive context that comes up with its own principles
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of justice. one other one where my theory is strange but something where one can do interesting philosophical things with very concrete policy. humanity as a whole has collective ownership to this planet. we together own this planet in a sense that is perfectly compatible with environmental values and similar things in a sensible policy but humanity as a whole has a responsibility for this planet. in light of that call for a lot more would have to be said in a meaningful way but in light of that it is not acceptable for any group of people to say now we are here, these of the borders and we can't do with them whatever we like. the immigration policy is something that is good the humanity as a whole that is
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subject to international agreement and international law making rather than purely a national quality. that leads me to that argument in support of the proposal that proceeds somewhat differently from the ownership standpoint. a parallel to something we know from property law which would have this idea of adverse possession which happens if some people move into a house or using uncertain cap that technically is don't buy them. belongs to somebody else. they do this openly and the official voters know about it. it happens eventually if you're the lead in a better and decide to complain about that you have lost your claim because he should have done this before and you didn't. and something similar is happening with illegal immigration's of course we have some enforcement large parts of the american economy in the south and west function around
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the presence of illegal immigrants. they're coming in to the agricultural sector. they come every year. as a society, we are quite okay with that. we are not protesting this. we are welcoming it as much as the economy depends on it. it is an adverse position that has taken hold here. we have lost the right to complain about that and this stage so to those already here we should say the obligation generating points, not that they made it a social practice here but we created a situation where they felt they belong to our economy and this is why we should be granting them amnesty. >> you had a series of questions. >> i will respond briefly to both.
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i was delighted that we are finding common ground. i agree with what carol swain said about the dream act. it is too restrictive. to clarify what we are doing here, we don't get to make the laws. we are citizens. we speak about what we think the law should be. we are in agreement. there should be an expandedy that gives legal status to all of those with extended periods, and -- >> it is problematic and of the test. >> tell us what you do think. [talking over each other] >> wait a minute. wait a minute. by the way i have a comprehensive immigration plan that is truly comprehensive for the record. the dream act, to we have pushed
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and sounds so beautiful, the american dream and how could you be opposed to it, blandest is ending is people as old as 35 and the person has to be a high-school graduate and they have to either go to college or go into the military. to me those things are not comparable and there is an elite bias for the kid that goes to college and so many people that are not going to get into college. and the kid that goes into the military they are risking their lives. we are exploiting those people that go into the military under this plan. i think immigration needs to be reformed and the american people have to decide what is the best plan but i have a comprehensive immigration plan and if any group deserves amnesty if any group deserves amnesty it would be the young people, not the parents that brought them here and there would be a cut off,
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maybe 24 and below. >> here's what puzzles me in this conversation. i don't understand why you reiterated this point which i agreed with. [talking over each other] >> here's what i'm trying to understand. let me see if i understand correctly because i'm looking for where we can agree and where we disagree we disagree. if i understand what you are saying, you don't want it to be restricted to -- you think it is discriminatory to creates these incentives to go into the military. you don't want to be restricted to keep going to college. >> i said it has an illegal bias. >> agree with that. i think it -- the reason i said the dream act is it seems like the only politically viable fanged that is out there but i don't want to work for the moment in this conversation about what is politically viable. i'm just interested in what would be right and what i think
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would be right -- let's just take the 24. i think it would be great. if we come to agreement so somebody on the right and somebody on the left, that all the kids 24 or younger to spend some period of time 12 years of their lives in the united states, that they should be given access to legal status without regard to whether they're in high school going to the military or college, that would be great. that would be a step -- >> what they're trying to do now is peel off that piece. i have a comprehensive immigration plan that i have been working on and in my plan there would be one component of. i am against mass amnesty but if there's any group that merits amnesty it would be those children brought here by their parents, a certain cut off, one
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time deal and if we truly reform immigration, calling comprehensive immigration reform that we release reformat in a comprehensive way i don't think the problem keeps doing that. i am in favor of addressing that as part of a larger package but not peeling that often dealing with this separately the way the congress wants to do right now. >> i will say very briefly -- >> i don't doubt that you have a serious, thoughtful, detailed, comprehensive immigration plan. what puzzles me is the best part of the difficulty has assure you know, a lot of people agree with your comprehensive detail immigration plan. some wilson won't. >> i will bring some people on
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the other side with me. >> will be interesting. maybe i will be wrong. it wouldn't surprise me. these things have been widely discussed. it wouldn't surprise me if a lot of people saw your comprehensive immigration plan have xenophon's and difficulties and there were not willing to sign on tour. >> i am willing to grant amnesty to the children that were brought here illegally by their parents. under certain age and it would be for the whole class. when be there you go to college or harvard or the military and risk your life. >> i get that and i am for that. i just think if we could find the areas where we agree -- so don't day. i won't repeat that. let me just say something
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briefly. >> one thing i meant to say on that too. i see your point that we are admitting more immigrants and neglecting the disadvantaged. what is important in an age of increasing political and economic interconnectedness is we do understand justice as a global project. and if we are applying that to domestic politics we have to reform domestic politics different and simultaneously. it is a very liberal position to say there has to be a genuinely fair opportunity in the american education system. the american education system is a disgrace. the left-wing people are saying improving american education system, massively regional resources into the american education system but at the same time adopt more open-minded
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immigration proposals because that has to be done so all of this is done simultaneously as well as climate policy. we cannot use failures of the level of domestic social policy to refuse obligations to the rest of the world. >> first of all conservatives have been a very involved in trying to improve education for african-americans in the heritage foundation's and other groups expendable lot of resources and studies and if you look at the data in washington d.c. and places were you have the majority of african-americans they like voucher programs and catholic schools do an excellent job educating in the city of minorities. so it is not true that conservatives are not concerned about education. [inaudible] >> it is the left wing position, not it right wing position.
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>> i disagree with that. there was something else you said was interesting too, about how we ought to save the planet. i am a christian and so my views are influenced by the judeo-christian bible and i believe there are distinct nation states for a reason. is okay for people to migrate but once they come to a person's country they have to abide by those laws and rules that are established and if they're not going to of a vision be willing to suffer the consequences. when someone like miguel sanchez decides to break into my country, that is fine but if he gets caught he should be willing to suffer whatever penalties are imposed for people who make that decision. so there's nothing wrong with nation states. i don't want borders he raced the nine asian and other countries.
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i am just saying the global argument about the movement of goods and services and people, borders are necessary. countries are different and if you don't like this country you can move to another country. you can skip all around the globe until you find a country like and i want to keep it that way and i don't think we should lower the standards further of the most tolerable americans just to achieve some type of utopian goals for people who think man consol man's problems. most of the problems we have now are because of man failing to solve man's problems. >> i was going to change the subject of little. it may not be appropriate. let me open it up to the audience. one of these things on the floor is a less philosophical the sophisticated analysis of that story. there are two ways of thinking
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of this. your colleague at the kennedy school, his argument is the american immigration policy as it exists -- the united states loses as a consequence of not having workers it needs on the low skill end. or the consequence we have a bunch of immigrants will be -- legal or illegal are insufficiently educated or able to take advantage of job opportunities to compete. defending countries lose because the people who would like to migrate around the world and businesses are important part of the country's's economies and individuals who want to migrate lose. this is about the dissolution of natural borders. i don't know if you would argue with that but the idea of having
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a highly restrictive emigration policy may be even more restrictive than the high end than the low end is a proposition that doesn't make sense from an economic perspective for the country or the people. you can agree or disagree but language in which for political purposes it might be important to get on the table. another way of making the same sort of argument, the argument of a congressman from california, one of his elegant little tables from his book in which the question is who is going to buy your house if you are a californian and you want to retire in 2020. his argument is most people who want to sell their house in 2020 are disproportionately elderly whites because they want to move to florida and most people who will be available who are possible buyers are going to be
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non-white and disproportionately immigrant especially true in california. and we are setting ourselves up as a society for not having a population to by our house to pay for social security or health care or anything else. it seems to me in parallel with, not instead of the justice based or write space argument regardless of where you come on one side or the other and also on the floor, a much more pragmatic, who is going to buy your house kind of argument, i just want to get that on the floor. >> we have 20 minutes left. unlike to open up to questions from the audience. if you would just go and question, not comments most of the time, comments posing as
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questions. >> this question -- can you hear me? this question is for joe. from my reaction to your talk, will there be some sort of tension between granting a state a right and -- and granting amnesty. and i wonder if you think we should end code is in our law some sort of amnesty policy. the legal process will grant legal status. if you managed to live here, we will grant legal status. there will be an incentive, if they think they can manage it. i wonder what your response was.
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>> there is a tension but one of the analogies i used, respecting property laws, statutes of limitation the. it is often the case in moral matters the personal my argument is there's a tension. there are better and worse ways to manage that tension. the assumption that states do not take the global models. i argue against it. people wind up talking past one another. they have different backgrounds
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assumptions. in conversations is helpful -- i am not sure i agree with everything, coming to some area of agreement and you might want to come back and reexamine the starting point. it is a question of having the discussion in stages. this particular topic it is sherri clear that the vast majority of people not only in the united states but in canada and europe and around the world. as a philosopher there are good reasons to question that. even given that constrained people become members overtime. that is why we started with this story. i want to start at the other end. do you think margaret brennan
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should be deported? [inaudible] >> i am completely persuaded. to people who were in regular immigrants. i wonder what we should do practically. will be an code in the law and amnesty policy? >> that is my proposal and it is not just hypothetical. the french had such a law that worked perfectly well that established a few live there for seven years without authorization your given legal status. as a practical matter you say wait a minute, we worry about getting too many people and this is an invitation, it seems to me the focus has to be on employers sanctions.
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you remove the incentive for people to work. we accept the premise you get to control these things. the focus should be on the employer's. serious regulation of employer sanctions. maybe another technique that needs to be used is id cards. various of these things -- there are tensions among these things. people object to employer sanctions wind up being used in a discriminatory way. that is a relevant moral consideration. it is often the case that whatever policy we adopt there will be objections which are good objections. there are trade offs and compromises. i don't think this is fundamentally different from any other set of trade offs and compromises. we find some middle ground.
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>> the so-called moral case is based more on an article of faith of your own personal beliefs dressed up with a couple anecdotes. i very much agree with carol swain's practical approach to immigration. the majority of the american public do as well as residents of massachusetts. they don't feel the immigration laws are being adequately enforced. they feel they are taking jobs away from american workers. >> your question? >> the question is in your boston review article you said the crux of your argument is social membership does not depend on official permission. but isn't there a moral case to be made that the majority of people in a society don't feel illegal aliens are a social
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members of that society and there is a moral basis than for excluding them? >> i am sure you are right. more people agree with you that with me. i am trying to persuade them otherwise. maybe i will have some block. the problem with the argument you just made about democratic legitimacy because the law should a majority say who belongs? the exclusion of african-americans from citizenship certainly has the support of the majority of white americans in our history and we don't think that was acceptably. the exclusion of chinese from citizenship has the support of the majority of americans. we don't think that was acceptable. my precise argument is you can't -- everybody recognizes majorities are not always right.
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i am not saying -- a majority to be persuaded. the majority says these people belong and doesn't prove they don't belong. that is what i am advocating. i am trying to persuade my fellow citizens to change the law. >> microphone. we got it. go ahead. just want to get -- >> the preamble to the constitution talks about providing for the common defense. the bigger issue when you look -- the state of the economy and projections for the u.s. if america wanted to that it could
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afford to a crease the welfare rolls because they show up by 40%, illegal and a grant households or some type of program. not just the fact the we have millions of people in the country at the time of a terrorism threat that we don't know who they are or what their goals are. is not clear we can afford to provide for them. we do have to make some hard decisions. i know for myself and many people i know we give money to missions and causes and if they all come here, we allow them to come here, i don't see how that
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benefits anyone. >> you made several points. you made this several times but the law is to law any return to that as a basic principle. he returned again and again to the crowding out affect. the question i want to pose to you, a slightly earlier period, we go back to the period of oriental exclusion it was impossible for many folks to come in with the legal status. there were arguments being made at that time on the affects of immigration on irish immigrants and others who were here illegally. would you adhere to your position that the law is the law and respect for the law takes first principle or would you look back on an earlier period and whig will just a bit?
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>> what i think about that earlier period applies some to today. agents were brought in to undercut the newly freed slaves. there is some data to suggest that. it disadvantaged or whites and newly freed slaves. some of that was motivated by racism against blackss. also legal, hispanic and poor whites, and it goes back to the time the chinese were brought to
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america. i stand by my statement. >> you actually argue -- [talking over each other] >> to emigration laws. i am sorry if it resulted in exclusion of the chinese. anytime african-americans have been poised, if you look at affirmative action, 1965, became -- by 1970 there were five groups covered that did not have the same history as black americans and they undercut the position of blacks. no reason why foreign born immigrants should be eligible for affirmative-action programs, and they benefited the most. >> back to the earlier period,
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you and or specifically -- >> the chinese were brought here to undercut african-americans. >> you look exclusively on that period and endorse racist exclusion criteria. because of the adverse effects on a party that was suffering -- >> they were brought here for racist reasons. >> chinese immigrants, in california just about zero blacks in california for the nineteenth century and the first half of the 20th-century but chinese laborers were brought to work through contracts labor, not necessarily voluntarily but the different segments of the country -- [talking over each other] >> african-americans in the nineteenth century were entirely in the south and chinese immigrants were entirely on the west coast and a tiny bit in the
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northeast. a different segment of the country. [talking over each other] >> maybe these studies are studies that you would say are not credible that have argued the chinese brought in to undercut the position of newly freed slaves. >> that people working in san francisco were affecting people in alabama. it is not the case. >> i will let you be the expert on that so i will withdraw. >> a different point about the question of bringing in labor's to undercut. [talking over each other] >> am i wrong about affirmative action? >> i am with you on that one. [talking over each other] >> this would be for joe. i would like more detail in
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policy mechanisms than you would suggest. to approach immigration. very unbiased. south of the border and as we have seen that we have no respect -- kind of a barbarian. being bitten -- i want to know how long i will be staying here. thank you for your a device. >> i am at a loss.
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[talking over each other] >> the conflict facing these emigrants facing economic conditions. i knew people who used to work -- i know why they come here. they don't find a job in mexico. which solution do you proposers in those countries? so we don't send them. would be another solution. >> actually when one looks at the long term solution to this issue, in the european union there are open borders. people think they are all alike. these are countries that fought world wars against each other not long ago and hated each other and now anyone who can travel anywhere is no big deal.
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all the anxiety generated by immigration is a reflection of global economic qualities that are the driving pressure. if those were resolved if i knew how to solve inequality i wouldn't be writing books as an academic. there are a lot of arguments about the best way to address that issue and what works and what doesn't. i don't claim to have any expertise on that but that clearly in some ultimate sense, the problem disappears once the economic differences -- the problem largely disappears once the vast economic differences -- there can be significant differences the doesn't create the same -- you were right to raise this issue. it is unfortunate that there is this offhanded reference to
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terrorism and welfare. [talking over each other] >> i look at the data and it seems it is deeply misleading and highly contested. if you were serious about that, we are going to grant amnesty and have this provision you don't have access to economic support presumably that you don't contribute to or have access to welfare. >> we don't do that in america. we take care of people who are disadvantaged. >> not true. congress passed a law that restricted access, it was a bad law but they passed a law. after your comprehensive immigration reform, not my ideal but i would be perfectly happy with an amnesty that limits access to welfare. that would be a good political compromise. i will give you that -- >> there is no databmic
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'rictd are strains on the educational do you think they shouldn't get an education? [talking over each other] >> you introduce the dream act but the thing is if we -- 12 to eighteen million illegal aliens
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we don't know how many are here that it is going to create on resources that are limited. american children go to hungry. [talking over each other] >> and economic hypothesis about the economic consequences of amnesty. >> a social welfare program. [talking over each other] >> if that were the only concern -- [talking over each other] >> amnesties tend to be get more amnesties. it is only going to encourage more people to come illegally. [talking over each other] >> we do have the resources to tackle these problems for 1% of the american population that has gained massively over the last 30 years and keeps gaining every
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year even in economic crisis. >> i don't see them -- >> okay. please join me in thanking our panelists for a quite provocative -- [applause] >> for more information about joseph carens's book "immigrants and the right to stay" visit bostonreview.net/books. >> we are the national press club talking to mark halperin and john heilemann about best seller "game change: obama and the clintons, mccain and palin, and the race of a lifetime". is there another book in the works for the two of you? >> we are working on a sequel as we say and hollywood. hbo is making a movie about this one and we are working on a book about the next presidential campaign. >> will there be in the paperback edition any update? >> the paperback just came out and we have a new after word
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that takes into account everything that happened over the course of the last 22 months between the last election and this one. >> what was the most fascinating thing about doing this book for the two of view? >> that our original goal when we had our first conversation we had a goal about what book we wanted it to be and what we thought might succeed and executed what we wanted to do which was pretty rewarding in any aspect of life. >> had you worked together before? >> we had written not so much as a shopping list. we had a meal and a few drinks but never written to get there. there are always challenges involving partnerships but within the possible spectrum of how rewarding and enjoyable was it was off the chart. we have a great time doing it. the writing of it was shockingly much easier than either of us expected it would be. >> booktv is on twitter. follow as for regular updates on
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our programming and news on nonfiction books and authors. twitter.com/booktv. >> up next, simon winchester present the history of the atlantic ocean. this event from the 2010 miami book fair international is 40 minutes. >> good to be back on the atlantic ocean. the book was launched in australia and new zealand. for the last ten days i have been on the west coast so i am now back at the see that i claim to know a tiny bit about. when i had the idea of writing a book about the atlantic ocean, necessarily a somewhat daunting task. how be right about such a vast entity? thirty three million square miles, great antiquity and importance. the initial thought i had was i would write it as a biography
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and that was the working title, atlantic biography of the ocean. the reason for that is the atlantic had a definable moment of birth. we know when it started to be and that was about 1 ninety million years ago, which back then was just one continent in the world called pangaea surrounded by an enormous sea called pan delays the. effect in the middle and that was the beginning of the atlantic ocean. it didn't reach its current configuration until fifty million years ago. two hundred million is what it was born. also has a pretty well definable moment of death or when it will cease to be and that is in 1 seventy million years from now. is slightly eccentric to describe but basically what geological few jurists who are
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mathematicians largely based in the university of texas when they think will happen is the southern tip of south america will start moving eastward along the bottom of the atlantic and continue south of south africa and move along the indian ocean, will reach australia and south australia spinning slowly in and anti clockwise direction and move northwards until it collides with singapore. it is a very weird construct but basically when cape horn collides with singapore the atlantic will cease to be. that will be in 1 seventy million years so no need to worry about it. we will be extinct. the concept of geological time ago and will not everyone gets. i was talking to a group of ladies who lunch in kansas city a few years ago. i was talking to them -- nothing to do with the atlantic, the yellowstone volcanic complex and
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how that is going to erupt again and in this series of eruptions that lasts several hundred years, all of the northwestern american cities the additional san francisco, portland, seattle, will be covered by hundreds of feet of volcanic dust and essentially the northwest and the united states will beat host. don't worry about it because we're talking geological time, maybe two fifty-five million years when all humankind will be extinct. everyone breathed a sigh of relief except that extremely a angry lady who waved her program and a belligerent way and said even americans will be extinct? yes, they will be. i will become an american in january so i will be extinct as well. if you will have me.
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the important thing, there is a birth and death. a crucial part is the middle. the 200,000 or so years in which humankind occupies the atlantic and how do you organize that. one day i was flying across the ocean and regarded as most people do, it is an indeterminable plotting distance. look at that map in front of you. you are always just between greenland and newfoundland. when is this mass of water going to be over? to pass the time i had a book of poetry, an anthology by the foreign secretary, all the poems he loved organized according to the seven age of man from shakespeare's as you like it and it gave me the structure for the book because the world is a stage and they all have their experts at the entrances. one man plays many parts. the number of back to being
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seven ages and those seven ages, the infant in the nurse's armed than the school board creeping to school like a snail and it goes on. we have in an, school child, lover, soldier, old man and return to childhood. each one of those categories seemed to me would be amenable to corralling the information i was gathering about the ocean in a logical sentence. in the soldier chapter i could put things relating to war from the vikings to the romans to the merrimack and monitor, slavery and empires and so forth. and the chapter about poetry and architecture and music and how that developed in and around the atlantic. shakespeare who had never been to the atlantic ocean and ever sailed on a ship, the way he
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continues to do five centuries after he lived spurred a writing another book. critics seem to have been kind. this morning's miami herald, a very nice review. but no one so far has used shakespeare for writing a model of the atlantic. it seems to have paid off. what i thought i would do with relatively limited time and i have to fly to toronto, not being an american the american publishers say you don't celebrate thanksgiving so you can continue your book tour in a place where they don't celebrate its, canada. when you are happily eating your turkey i will be in st. john's newfoundland. raise a glass to me if you will. what i thought i would do is choose two stories from this gallon every of odds and ends about the atlantic.
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one utterly trivial and an important and one surprising and quite important to give you an idea of the range of things that this great ocean is. it is not this incommoding expense of distance, it is a place of marvel and fascination. the first story is from the north atlantic from a group of islands which the brits like to go to. they are 60 degrees north from shetland to iceland and there are 18 islands and they all belong to denmark and they are populated essentially by 50,000 people and can fairly be said to the vikings. the last stronghold of the
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vikings. linguistically viking kong. it is hard wired to sack and pillage and do all sorts of violent things but the frustrating thing, the islands are at war with nobody. they are big strapping chaps. the superabundance of testosterone and they clearly need to purge themselves of it and they do in this peculiar way which i will attempt to describe. topographic we 18 of them, layers of volcanic rocks, over to the east so that on the western side of these 18 islands there are very steep and high cliffs in the world, and from the summit, and angle of 30
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degrees and it bleeds on to the eastern seaboard where there are no cliffs. the cliffs are the key to this story and the islands i went to, an island in the westernmost of the pharaohs. cascading water, dotted all over, tiny patches of grass not much bigger than that table. the keys to what happens, each spring, young strong liking men came to the base of the cliffs in little boats. and his intention is to get on to the cliff which in normal circumstances would be a foolhardy thing to do.
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there are ropes suspended from the top of the cliff. there may be 20 ropes down to the seaside. so he maneuvers his boat to the bottom of one of these ropes and you can imagine what going up and down and the bottom of the cliff being slimy with seaweed. a very forbidding looking place but they are quite experienced and judge to the moment of the gap on the cliff. at a prearranged moment he jumps and get on to the bottom and grab the rope and lack a fair wind he is secure. he will bruise a bit but he is there and secure. so he makes sure he is secure and he reaches behind him into the well of the boat and reaches from it. a the bottom of the boat has dozens of baby sheets. he arrangeds this a around his
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neck and cuts -- in his shirt and a ranges it under his collar and is secure. it won't fold out. it starts climbing and climbing steadily and slowly up the rope 200 feet. a little lamb around his neck until he gets to one of these arranged pieces of grass. the grass on these cliffs is enriched with the bird that is most common on the cliffs. the bird that is most common is the puffin. puffin guano is extremely rich in nitrates. the grass that grows on these cliffs is very large and nutritious. the only problem is it is almost totally vertical. we are not talking -- he reaches
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the point where there is one of these the patches of green grass. at this point he stops and secures himself and takes it from his shoulders and plants it on the grass. he looks down and sees a hundred feet below him the seat heaving and crashing and realizes with lamb like intelligence, he can avoid falling off, according to the chaps are talk to, arranging his legs and achieving a degree of stability and the faeroese man has his hand on the outside and the other on a roll, and purging of lamb. three your five minute of encouragement, they removed his
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hand, i don't know what is focused because he says are you going to be ok? the lamb puts a little -- gingerly he removes his hand and the -- everything is okay. if you go to the fairway is islands in the summer you will see the cliffs and little green patches of grass and in the middle of all of them, tiny white dots and you will see it is a lamb. in october or november, a faeroese chap comes to his rope and goes to a patch of grass. instead of there being a lamb there is now an enormous sheep. this thing has no room to
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exercise a. it just has been clinging on to life and wolfing down this extremely rich grass and has become enormously fat. i would love to tell you this gentleman is a compassionate man but this is not the case. instead of putting his hand on the outside he put it on the inside between the mountainside with a quick -- backwards he goes and the land tumbles through space and several seconds later splashes into the ocean. he pulls it out not terribly well after this experience. and lures him into the boat and returns to when a butcher it and what they say is indisputably the tastiest lamb anywhere in the world. the story a

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