Skip to main content

tv   In Depth  CSPAN  October 17, 2015 12:38am-1:53am EDT

12:38 am
i moved here starting at the eighth-grade when dick and land and we all met each other at the school year. we would all go to the same parties and they never dated until they were seniors because everybody call mingled with everybody else. not like it is today. they were very popular of ♪ ♪
12:39 am
♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
12:40 am
♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ >> host: lynne chaney, we are showing influences in your life. we talked about margaret scheidler. another is richard himmelfarb. who is she? >> guest: an amazing intellectual who i have been interested in the taurean
12:41 am
period. she is much more insightful than i think i've ever been about while we condemn as morality of the victorian period with this underway. how was important and what we gain when they move away and what we lose. he's been a wonderful writer on the enlightenment in america. she resigned the national and i'm up for humanities council when i was there. you could just count on her to be incredibly perceptive about whatever the subject at hand was. burchard as i call her miss mary to crystal and her husband as bill kristol of the weekly standard. it is a family that has made the
12:42 am
intellectual life seem so energizing and reporting. >> host: when you were second lady did you maintain an office? >> guest: yes, but i didn't go down very much. this trouble to get secret service agent and a couple of cars. >> host: this text for you. can mrs. cheney comment on the role of think tanks and contemporary politics? >> guest: well, they are different. aei is even different since i've been there. i suppose there was more influenced -- more attention paid to the humanities. i think it has evolved so the issues that are front and center are those that are front and center on capitol hill and in the white house. it has become a much more
12:43 am
dynamic and energize placed as the evolution has occurred and we have a great leader right now. a fellow named arthur brooks. >> host: this text goes on to say what in your opinion would madison and the other founders think of the think tanks? >> guest: they would probably want to be in one. >> host: 202. a little over an hour left. author and scholar, lynne chaney. (202)748-8201 for the mountain and pacific time zone. several other ways to get ahold of a city can get through phone lines. e-mail or a twitter handle. you can make a comment there. and finally, text a message
12:44 am
(202)465-6842. lynne chaney is the author of 13 books. six or seven of those are for children. a couple novels for the most recent bestseller and james madison and michael is in ft. pearce, florida. hi, michael. >> caller: good afternoon. mrs. cheney come i first want to let you know i have some fond memories -- memories. i have the opportunity to travel all over the rockies. so you have a beautiful postcard >> guest: it is beautiful. >> caller: my question has to do with the political environment today and why conservatives seem to have such difficult the in communicating their message to the average individual. they do very well singing in
12:45 am
front of the choir but depending upon the audience it doesn't seem to get through relevant. >> host: michael, are you conservative? >> guest: they'll actually made a conscious effort to maintain my independence. it hasn't kept parties from contact amy for support but i'm a registered independent. >> host: in your view what would be a good message for conservatives? >> guest: the benefits of a conservative sort of government in a place like east st. louis take a message to where it is needed. you know, speaking to the american enterprise institute, you're going to have a very nice reception is a conservative. conservatives need to get out and get their message to people who need it most.
12:46 am
>> host: who i have heard recently talking about this in a very informed wastelands previous was the chairman of the republican party. i heard him go on at some length about the necessity for outreach. you don't make phone calls trying to get those. you go when men say they are and the fellow failings you have with people who are working hard and making their way up. arthur brooks has also spoken about this very well in his book, the conservative heart. when you're a conservative you find yourself saying no a lot. we don't want obamacare in what you have to do is explain why it is often really gas.
12:47 am
no, we don't want to raise taxes because yes we want to support people who are working their way and do understand the importance of free enterprise. we don't often get our message across while, but those are a couple of people who have been contemplating the subject sensibly. >> host: text from 10 tidbit come i'm sorry, facebook comment. i'm a teacher who shares your america book every year. what advice do you have for your second grade writer? what did you like to read in elementary school and here is one of the children's books. >> guest: one assam member clearly was about my dog and the dog was named heidi and i got lots of praise for this essay from my teacher. one breakfast a home and having
12:48 am
the teacher find what is good in that as well as pointing out where you could do better. there aren't a lot of stories in american history that would be good subjects. one of the books i wrote for children is called when washington crossed the delaware and it is such a great story because it's enclosed. washington after this long retreat decides to go on the offense and does this heroic thing crossing the delaware, capturing a thousand haitians, taking them back and then he goes to princeton. this is the kind of a story. the glorious end of the story followed doubt and difficulty leading up to it. so i think there are stories like that they have to tell the
12:49 am
children first. maybe you can ask them, what was heroic about what washington did? >> guest: here is the inside of america, the children's book from madison i guess you could say. what is the difference between writing for children. how did you change your style? >> guest: you can't write for long sentences and you have to be thoughtful about your vocabulary. i have to tell you that is wonderful discipline. when you move through that, there's also this great feeling of freedom because it doesn't matter if i was sometimes prayer for lifelong. i've compared this to writing haiku. you have to condense so much in such a little space. you have to make it accurate and
12:50 am
that is important for children and it has to be understandable and still enjoyable. i was lucky with this book and a couple others who have a wonderful illustrator who brings such joy to the process. >> host: here is her picture. she's also a dancer. >> guest: just, she is. she has now written a series called fiancé nancy that is so wild and popular i don't know if i'll ever get to go straight again for me. >> host: another caller. >> caller: hi, i just want to say mrs. cheney in such a great admirer of the research you put into your book will be fascinating if you could write a continuation to blue skies, no fences if you could describe
12:51 am
your phd years devoted to motherhood and also behind the scenes of her political life. is that something you would consider? >> guest: jazz, but i want to be a lot older first. you can be franker as you get older. i don't want to tell tales right now. maybe when i'm 90. but thank you for that suggestion. there's a lot of things i would love to say that i would have to be tactful. >> host: have you kept a diary? >> guest: no. i wish i had. as someone who is close to a public figure, it would be a mistake. we could get subpoenaed. >> host: are we losing information with e-mail with some of the ways we communicate today? >> guest: washington papers are the ones that knocked me
12:52 am
over because he had a lot of people helping him right. there are many people. you know every day for washington was doing during the revolution. every day. i'm sure there are exceptions but mostly not. i don't think we will no doubt about president obama for president bush or anyone who has lived as far back to the 20th century. >> host: in your husband's book coming he writes about driving across country after surveying the secretary surveying the secretary of defense and delivering his papers. he delivered quite a bit of material to the university of wyoming in a u-haul. did you accompany him? >> guest: now, do i look crazy? dick likes to drive. he loves the way the various
12:53 am
aspects and he loves going across nebraska which can take you forever. she just loves it. he wanted to take a drive. he also needed to get the car out there. >> host: you did not participate in the driving? >> guest: i flew. it would be nice to have them all in one place. >> host: next call comes from the weeds in bozeman, montana. you are on booktv. quote >> caller: hello, mrs. cheney. it's quite an honor to speak to you. i'm going to be a celebrity at our dinner party tonight. everyone will be so jealous attack to one of the cheney members. without your daughter and her
12:54 am
son -- and in your husband. the reason i called this i didn't know you had written so many children's books and my sister and i are in a mission to get better history lesson. my question is simple. what are the age groups for being able to read it and secondly to read it to themselves. >> guest: i've had my own experience reading it to 4-year-old grandchildren and by the time they are six. the illustrations and that's a wonderful reason to read it with them because you can talk about the illustration. i mentioned a minute ago the book i wrote about washington crossing the delaware from an
12:55 am
other one called we the people about the constitution. the pictures are so wonderful. here is madison, benjamin frank lindh. while they could read books themselves by the time they are six or seven, i also think the x variants of rating them to a young person for a clinch road is very, very rich and enriching for both parties involved. >> host: dear mrs. cheney, what is your next children book in your next nonfiction memoir going to be. let's bring it back to the conversation. this is from tom in tampa. >> guest: you know, i don't know when i'm going to ride it but i sure would like to. these books are so gratifying because you go do a book signing with little kids and thompson died who want them to know about
12:56 am
history. i look forward to doing that. i've got a couple titles in mind that i don't want to give them away. i am interested in the work of in the worker junior presidents as is a book for adults. there's so many great personal stories. not only great accomplishment, amazing, schmidt, but just so many great stories i would like to tell. >> host: we interviewed david macauley yesterday at a book festival and a caller asked him where he got his boys in the senate put it it on the shelf for two weeks and then i go back and see if it stands up and if it bores me. >> guest: i have also heard david mccullough reads his books aloud to his wife. i think that's a great idea. britain and prose is so important. there is a copy of the declaration of independence as these marks on it.
12:57 am
as you scan poetry to see how the river marks. another way to do it is read it out loud and you hear it working. .. >> caller: yes, thank you. hi, ms. cheney. >> guest: hi. >> caller: i just want to ask do you think that barack obama a should be impeached?
12:58 am
>> guest: well, no. no. i think he's been a disastrous president in many ways, but i don't see high crimes and misdemeanors. i just see taking the country in the wrong direction. >> host: jill is in woodburn, oregon. jill? >> caller: hello, mrs. cheney. it's an honor to speak to you. i want to ask you when did you first decide that you were going to become a writer? and did you have a mentor, and was it difficult to find a publisher when you wrote your first book? and then just a real quick comment about -- i'm actually born and raised in colorado springs, and i wanted to ask you what was your experience like at colorado college? thank you. >> guest: gosh, that's a lot of questions. >> caller: jill, where'd you go to college? >> guest: i went to college in bend, oregon. >> guest: thank you for what you
12:59 am
do. let's start with the last first. my experience at colorado college was terrific. my two daughters went there, my son-in-law went there, i have a grandchild there. it's, you know, peter and i were talking about small liberal arts colleges, and it's just my cup of tea, you know? where you can get to know the professors. now at colorado college there's this thing called the brock plan where you -- block plan where you study one class three weeks in total depth and nothing else. and that works very well. so for me, that was terrific. i honestly -- and this doesn't sound like a very inspiring answer, but as i said before, i became a writer when i couldn't get a job teaching. and, you know, you don't know how these great disappointments in life are going to turn around and be a great blessing. but for me that was certainly the case. getting published, i think, is harder now than it has ever been. partly because the publishing industry isn't quite as robust as it once was, but there's a
1:00 am
lot of self-publishing going on which i find very interesting. and, you know, people find ways to set up web sites and promote their own books and sell their own books. so in a way while the publishing industry itself is not as robust as it once was, there are these other entry points that i think are very promising. >> host: your james madison was reviewed far and wide, liberal, conservative. it got pretty high marks right across the board. do you care about the reviews? >> guest: oh, yeah. i mean, i wish i didn't -- [laughter] but sure, i do. especially when you've spent five years on something. you know, you'd like to have a little ratification, a little hint that maybe it wasn't five years wasted. >> host: next call for lynne cheney comes from dorothy in kentucky, i think that's ur langer, kentucky. >> caller: hi. hello, ms. cheney, it's a
1:01 am
privilege to talk to you. >> guest: hi. >> caller: my concern is freedom of religion. you know, the separation of church and state has gone way too far, if you ask me. the state is trying to take freedom of religion and god out of our public, and my problem is with this ms. davis in kentucky being jailed and because of her belief, isn't that the state impeding the religion of the american people? >> guest: you know, there are many people who look at it that way, and i understand that. i guess i also think, though, that ms. davis is a public servant, and in that role has to uphold the law. i mean, it's a very difficult problem.
1:02 am
but, you know, you can't have policemen, for example, refusing to arrest people or arrest them because -- it would be more fitting to say not arrest them because of their gender or their race or their sexual orientation. so i find the fact that she's working for the state problem mat you can. problematic. it's a different matter in private life, i think. but i think ms. davis has to uphold the law, or she's always free to find another job. and i'm sorry you and i, i don't think, agree on that. >> host: what did james madison, what were his views on religion? >> guest: views on religion. well, he never said. i think he was most likely something like a unitarian. he thought that religion was very important to public life because it turned people toward
1:03 am
the good rather than the bad. but he mostly, his most underlying important belief is that each of us ought to be free to worship as we wish. now, you know, i'm not sure that this case is the same as that. we're all free to worship as we wish, but if we're in the pay, in the employ of the state, don't we have to enforce the law of the state? that's -- this is all very complicated. >> host: how did you pick the charities that the proceeds from your children's books go to? >> guest: oh, well -- >> host: i know there's some educational endowment funds there. >> guest: yes. it seems to me to put some of the money into causes that support children was very important, and i think also causes that support the armed forces. that was very important during a time that -- and it still is very important. so i have to say it wasn't as
1:04 am
systematized as it should have been, but i felt so grateful that i could do that. >> host: and i think it was reported about eight million, at least $8 million -- >> guest: no, that's a different pot of money. >> host: isn't that the money -- oh, was that from -- that's a different pot of money? >> guest: well, okay. about a million dollars of the children's books -- >> host: right. >> guest: -- went to charity. but when dick became vice president, he had been the ceo of halliburton, and he had these things called unvested options which basically are promises that in the future you're going to get options which are worth some money. so unvested options, promises in the future. there was nothing illegal about keeping them, because, you know, they were already a done deal. they were already baked in. but he thought, and i agreed, that it wasn't as clean as it should be. and so we set up a plan whereby
1:05 am
the unvested options got donated to charity. and there was i'm not sure of the number, and or -- seven and or eight million dollars. a lot of that money went to george washington hospital where dick's life has been saved many times, a lot to the university of wyoming, some to an organization in the district of columbia that helps put kids who are not in good schools into better situations, and so that, i think those were the main contributions. >> host: vicki is in meridian, mississippi. hi, vicki. >> caller: hello. >> guest: hi, vicki. >> caller: hey. i'd first like to thank c-span for booktv. it's a wonderful window for so many people. and mrs. cheney, your family for all your public service. my question is during your research of james madison, was
1:06 am
there anything that surprised you? that you weren't expecting to find? >> guest: well, i certainly didn't know at the outset that he had epilepsy, and i am now convinced he did. i always knew that dolley madison would be fun to write about, but i was surprised at how much fun she was to write about. when you're, when you write books, you're always trying to give people images, you know, so they can see it as well as just understand it intellectually. and dolley has some great images. one of my favorites, you know, is a pink velvet dress with lots of gold chains involved and a high white turban with peacock feathers coming out. she was already taller than james, but the time you add the turban and the peacock feathers, she must have been a foot and a half taller than he was. this is just a delight and to be able to convey to people. so those are the two things i would say, james' illness and
1:07 am
dolley madison's wonderful dramatic self. >> host: stephen in charlotte, north carolina, e-mail. what does lynne cheney think of the decision to change hamilton's $10 bill? which woman should be on a bill and which bill? he this thinks jackson -- he thinks jackson should be replaced on the 20. >> guest: that's interesting, because i've had that same thought, why hamilton? you know, he contributed so much to the economic system that we have in this country. also i just, not so long ago i saw the play "hamilton" in new york which is, oh, it's quite wonderful. why hamilton? i don't want to replace hamilton. now, like the person who e-mailed, i'm not that great a fan of jackson, but i'm also not sure what we're doing here. i'm not sure what we're doing about changing the name of the mountain range from mount mckinley to denali. people were already using both names. why do we have to break these
1:08 am
connections with the past? we are more moral in some ways than our predecessors were in virginia in those days, but they had many things to contribute that we don't have. so i'm just not a fan of this. >> host: kate is in austin, texas. kate, you're on with author and scholar lynne cheney. please go ahead. >> caller: hi, good afternoon, and thank you for this wonderful show. i'm a big fan of dolley madison, and i'm wondering, mrs. cheney, if during your research do you ever come across any evidence, for example letters, that dolley and -- influenced james' political ideas on the form our government should take or on the bill of rights? >> guest: ing no. she wasn't abigail who was quite clear in her letter to john that you shouldn't forget the women
1:09 am
as you form the new nation. now, they did pretty much forget women as they formed it anyway, but abigail was out there pushing her point of view. dolley's influence was maybe as great but more subtle. one of my favorite dolley stories is, you know, you know the story a little bit, how she's in the white house, and the british are coming during the war of 1812, so she saves the george washington portrait. but you look at the letter that dolley wrote, it went over three days. and it just seems such an unlikely thing, that you're writing a letter over three days while you're running away from the white house, and getting someone to cut george washington out of the frame of the painting. it almost -- she writes it as though she's writing it at the time, but i really think she wrote it after. she understood the importance of telling the story right. and so she told it really, really right. it was a different kind of influence. it wasn't a political one, i think.
1:10 am
>> host: although he had long regarded an army, in particular as dangerous in a republic, he now realized that military strength was essential to the nation's security. from "james madison." >> guest: you know, during the revolution when the revolution got started, it was widely believed that an army was a monster, you know? you maybe needed to gather a few militia together, maybe even a lot of them to fight this war, but you didn't want an army because they could turn on a free people and make a tyranny of what had been an independent land. so it took a long time during the revolution for congress to even come around to the idea that, you know, maybe we ought to enlist them for three years. but first it was like six months and a year. so let's enlist people for three years. and the whole notion that a standing army was evil lasted in american consciousness for quite
1:11 am
a while. madison, faced with the war of 1812, certainly saw the need for a standing army. he also, he had never wanted us to build ships. thank goodness for john adams who managed to i think it was six frigates that he managed to get authorized. there's a wonderful book called "six frigates" by ian toll. ian toll is the author. you know, those ships, the constitution, these ships kept american hope alive when the war of 1812 wasn't going well. >> host: we haven't talked about john adams and james madison's relationship. if any. >> guest: not much. not much. >> host: why? how did they miss each other? [laughter] >> guest: you know, adams was the interloper. he was the second president. and otherwise the virginians would be in charge. what relationship there was was
1:12 am
pretty hostile, because adams signed the alien and sedition acts, and madison -- who was a great champion of freedom of expression -- suddenly found himself in a country where, you know, the president said, you know, you start talking ill against this country, you start talking ill against the alliances we have, well, we'll put you in jail like we did that newspaper publisher and this newspaper publisher. so that, that was a great shock to both madison and jefferson when that happened. >> host: when you look at james madison, you look at the executive branch today, the powers, what kind of powers would james madison have as compared to today? >> guest: very small. i mean, today it's grown so amazingly. i mean, you know, executive orders, executive agreements, i think jefferson is even on record as having said, you know,
1:13 am
when we've got some business to do, we can't always have a full treaty and the full vote and all that's involved. so that started very early. but i cannot imagine that something like the agreement with iran wouldn't have been properly regarded as a treaty. >> host: larry is in las vegas. larry, we've got about 30 minutes left with our guest, lynne cheney. >> guest: good morning, mrs. cheney. it's a pleasure to ask you a question. number one, how do you think the people that framed the constitution and our laws feel about when they were in their later life? and also what do you think they thought about, would think about potus, the supreme court and the congress today? >> guest: i didn't quite get the first part. >> host: yeah, larry, could you repeat? >> caller: this their later life -- in their later life, the framers of the constitution and everything, how do you think they felt in their later life?
1:14 am
do you think they felt they had achieved success? >> guest: yes, i think so. there was this whole tradition. it was around the country but especially in virginia, you know, the ideal outcome of life was fame. and that didn't mean being famous, it meant being honored by posterity. it was regarded as a kind of immortality. and if you had done something grand, and the grandest thing you could do would be to be a founder of the nation, then you would be remembered by posterity. so i think they all understood at the end of their lives that they had, they had achieved that. it's an interesting question to think, you know, what if i could have james madison for my house guest, you know? and drive him around downtown d.c. i just, i think it would just be shock, just complete shock at the size this whole thing has achieved. now, it had to be a lot bigger.
1:15 am
you know, the country's a lot bigger. but i still think they'd, you know, have to be taken to a bar and have a good, stiff drink, you know, after having seen the gargantuan that we've created. >> host: the president was modest when he spoke to congress for the last time in december. he spoke of his pride that the american people have reached in safety and success their 40th year as an independent nation and that for nearly an entire generation they have had experience of their present constitution. he did not mention his role in creating the constitution. instead, attributing it to the citizens of the united states. >> guest: that's really nice, isn't it? >> host: that's from your book, "james madison: a life reconsidered." >> guest: and i think they also understood that they had created something so innate. it hadn't been seen under the sun, a great republic.
1:16 am
and they had seen -- because they'd been through the french revolution -- they had seen how this can go awry. you know, revolutions don't always end well. revolutions don't always end up in republics. so i think, you know, yes, modesty was considered a great virtue. that was one of the things that madison learned from reading "the spectator." modesty was really important. but inside i think they just must have burst with pride and happiness at what they had created. >> host: once you finish your manuscript, how many pages did you have? what happens to it? when do you see it again? how often do you work with an editor? >> guest: well, you get several chances, you know? the editor will read it first and send it back, and then, you know, you rework -- if you think you need to -- parts that he or she has pointed to. if you think you need to. i mean, it's usually a back and forth. and then it goes this again. you might get it back again.
1:17 am
and pretty soon you get it back in a way that is in print, but you can still make some changes. and then you get it back again in a way that it's more firmly locked in print, and if you make changes, it better not change the lines. you know, you still want -- i don't know what it is, 23 lines on the page. so if you're going to make an addition or subtraction, it better fit, because other the index will have to be changed. the index drives a hot at the end. they prepare the index, and it says this is on page 323, and if you do a lot of changing, it won't be. you know, it goes back and forth quite a lot. it took nearly a year, i think. now, this isn't the case with all books. >> host: did you turn in more than 400 pages of manuscript? >> guest: is that only how long the book is? >> host: i think it's about 400, is what i want to say. i'm looking at the soft copy here. about 435.
1:18 am
>> guest: okay. that's -- you know, i'm sure that is not very far off what i turned in. i do a lot, a lot of rewriting, but not at that point. >> host: diane, mission viejo, california. hi, diane. >> caller: hi, mrs. cheney. it's such a pleasure to talk to you. >> guest: my pleasure. >> caller: this is a funny story, but my maiden claim is cheney, but it's c-h-a -- >> guest: ah, so no question about how to say that one. >> caller: no. i'm so looking forward also to reading your husband and liz's book, but i also wanted to ask you i have a 4-year-old granddaughter, and which book of yours for chirp would be more -- for children would be more appropriate for her age level? >> guest: oh. well, i'm not sure it's age level, but whenever i'm going to give a first children's book to a girl, i give "a is for abigail."
1:19 am
it's just a perfect gift for a little girl. what's her name? >> host: diane, you still with us? >> caller: yes. >> host: what's her name? >> caller: her name is bella. >> guest: then you buy a is for abigail, and inside the page you say, and b is for bela. and she will love it her whole life. >> caller: yeah, because she can spell her name real well. thank you so much. it's a joy to have this program. >> host: that's diane in mission viejo, and next up is david in cape coral, florida. wow. cape coral, florida billion. hi, david, sorry about that. >> caller: hi. hi, mrs. cheney. >> guest: hi. >> caller: i just called to express, i always wanted to tell somebody how grateful we were that your husband's willing to take on the job as vice vice president at the time he did and when, you know, he really had no expectation of going on to run for president or anything like
1:20 am
that and was so secure. we really appreciated that. >> guest: well, that's so nice. i'll pass that along. i'm sure he'll be happy to hear that. >> host: he is out on -- david, did you want to add something else? >> caller: well, no. just that irene and i just got back from wyoming. we visited -- >> guest: oh! >> caller: it's very interesting how close and personal the political life there seems compared to other places. >> guest: that's a really good observation. everybody knows everybody. it's like someone once likened wyoming to a sort of small town with very long streets, you know? a whole state is lined up. so we all know each other. >> host: 202 is the area code, 748-8200 in the east and central time zones, 8201 if you live in the mountain and pacific time zones. we're going to put up some other addresses, including a text address, 202-465-6842.
1:21 am
go ahead and send those texts to lynne cheney. she is the author of 13 books. we want to show you the covers of those 13 books. the first two were novels, "executive privilege" came out in 1979. mrs. cheney, when you sat down and you saw a copy of that, you kind of laughed, because you had forgotten about that book. [laughter] >> guest: people often ask me how many books i'd written, so this morning i thought you would, and i was trying to total them up, and i don't know the number i came up with, but i didn't count "executive privilege." so thank you. >> host: sisters in 1981, another novel. tyrannical machines, 1990. telling the truth: why our culture and our country have stopped making sense and what we can do about it, 1996. kings of the kill written with her husband, 1996, it's about power and personality in the
1:22 am
house of representatives. america: a patriotic primer, her first children's book, 2002. a is for abigail, 2003. when washington crossed the delaware: a winter time story for young patriots, 2004. a time for freedom, 2005. our 50 statements, another children's book, a family adventure across america, 2006. and then her memoir, "blue skies, no fences: a hem worry of childhood and family," 2007. 2008 another children's book. her newest book, "james madison: a life reconsidered," came out in 2014 to very good reviews, and it also became a bestseller. did you do a book tour? >> guest: oh, yes. >> host: did you enjoy the book tour? >> guest: well, more than i might have because dick went along. he was -- he used to joke he was my arm candy. you know, wives go along on
1:23 am
everything and, you know, smile nice at the crowds, but dick came along. and so instead of giving speeches, which i find, you know, i can give a good speech, but it's just a little bit stressful. instead of speeches, dick interviewed me. and so everybody loved it. i loved it because i could just answer questions and not have to stand up and give a speech, and i think he enjoyed it too. and audiences, for sure did. >> host: and, in fact, booktv covered you out at the reagan or nixon library with the two of you sitting and doing that conversation when the book first came out. >> guest: yeah. >> host: was it like campaigning? >> guest: a little. but, you know, you're not so worried about saying something that, you know, is going to cause a big bruhaha on the nightly news. so it's more relaxing than campaigning. when we campaigned, i didn't get to talk very much. so this was a little more enjoyable than that since i got to talk a little bit as well.
1:24 am
>> host: well, i remember the '04 campaign you did some town meetings where you interviewed the vice president. maybe not interviewed -- >> guest: no, that's probably right. i got to ask questions. but this time i got to answer them, so -- >> host: why is speechmaking stressful for you? >> guest: well, not that it's -- i think it's stressful for everybody. you know? you have to try to entertain people by talking straight at them for a long time. and having been an audience member in a lot of speeches, that's just inherently boring, you know? you don't -- people always like the question and answer after better than they do the speech. so, you know, i think they just enjoy this interview format more too. it's a little easy -- it's more surprising, you know? you never quite know what's going to happen. dick will ask me a question like what's the best thing about me? [laughter] you know, i actually have never asked that, but some surprising
1:25 am
questions. i just think the entertainment value is achieved without so much work. >> host: marty, trenton, new jersey. hi, marty, you're on with lynne cheney. >> caller: ms. cheney, i saw your list of books, and among them was david hackett fisher's -- [inaudible] and that's also one of my very favorites. and, in fact, i taught an immigration course for quite a few years, and i used that as one of the texts. >> guest: oh, great. >> caller: and i also teach new jersey history, and david hackett fisher has also wrote "washington's crossing." >> guest: exactly. >> caller: i assume you've read that as you wrote your own book on washington. >> guest: yes. >> host: crossing the delaware. marty, why did you teach albion seed as the one of the books you taught? >> guest: it's a good introductory book to the whole
1:26 am
problem of immigration. he poses a scenario where four groups of people, the puritans, the quakers, the virginians and the irish, scotch-irish formed the basis for the mores of america. >> guest: yep. >> caller: but his accounts of those communities are absolutely priceless. he really is quite a good historian and a very good writer. and there's that and, of course, there's the washington's crossing. there's perhaps half a dozen or so accounts of washington crossing the delaware. i think of all of them fisher's is the latest and the best. he's a great admirer of washington. he brings out some of the superb qualities that washington had.
1:27 am
this doesn't come out in the book, but for example, ms. cheney talked about the fear of a standing army. well, that's why they formed the society of since gnat discuss. i mean, washington could have been king. he could have been anything. and he gave up his control of the army and went back to mount vernon. that's perhaps his finest hour, i don't know. but, you know, these are things that fisher brings out. that's all i wanted to say. >> guest: i enjoyed albion sea because it was at the time i was writing "blue skies, no fences," in which there's some genealogy. and i became interested not only in my own forebearers, but in dick's. as a result of that we figured out that dick had -- one cheney came with puritans. but another cheney came with the roilists -- royalists into maryland. and there are so many wonderful
1:28 am
documents about the cheney that came into maryland, but you just see how one family line became so different from the other, because there's hardly a more different contrast, greater contrast than between the new englanders and the virginians, the marylanders. this ancestor had come because of religious oppression. you know, the puritans were being discriminated against. this ancestor came because of the civil war in england. he was a royalist. and oliver cromwell was making life for the royalists difficult can. so i loved the book in that context. and, yes, when washington crossing the delaware came out, david hackett fisher's book, dick was vice president at the time, and so we were fortunate enough to have him come for dinner and talk about his book. he does a great job of that too. >> host: and you have a family
1:29 am
tree here -- >> guest: yes. >> host: -- in "blue skies," your family tree at least. in the acknowledgments of this book, you thank i think it's the mormon church, their genealogical records and some other laces that -- are those hard to navigate? >> guest: you know, it's easier than ever now on the internet because so many people are navigating things. i was trying to, you know, discover the identity of a young woman, her last name, in fact, was brown. but i found, you know, a great record of her in the french family records because one of her ancestors had been named french. one of my maternal ancestors was a woman named katura vaughn who was recruited in wales by brigham young and the people. so she came over as a mormon. it's just a heroic life. you know, she landed in louisiana. therecholera on the boat, her hd
1:30 am
died, her baby died. she went up the mississippi and the missouri to council bluffs which was a stepping-off place to cross, you know, the whole west to get to utah. and, boy, they were just tough people. and i just loved knowing her story, and i certainly got a lot of the information from the mormon archives. >> host: this is i think my favorite quote in the book, and i think it was written in your yearbook. lynne, you have a wonderful personality, you're very pretty, and you're awfully intelligent. most girls are either pretty and dumb or smart and plain. [laughter] you have a rare combination of both. >> guest: or dick. dick cheney wrote that, of course, but he's evolved. >> host: and here's a picture of lynne and dick cheney at their high school graduation, and that's your mother in the background. >> guest: yes. i remember that picture. she's trying to keep the light
1:31 am
from coming through the door to the living room, so she's up there kind of holding it back. >> host: rita, daytona beach, florida. please go ahead. >> caller: yes, good afternoon, mrs. cheney. >> guest: good afternoon. >> caller: my mom, my mom passed away over 30 years ago, and she suffered from epilepsy, as did james madison. she was a very intelligent woman, and she also was a lover of history. she believed, as i do, that truth in government was very important, and for those interested in truth regarding the issue of iraq, i suggest they go online at center for public which documents over 900 lies told by the bush/cheney administration. >> guest: i'm not going to go on that, because it sounds like propaganda. but i just will say that i think president bush and my husband did a fine and honorable job,
1:32 am
and i'll further point out that when they left office -- because of president bush's courage in pushing forward a surge -- iraq was a stable place, which it is not today. >> host: i want to go back to your mother,. [applause] cheney, because you write about her -- mrs. cheney, because you write about her quite a bit. having her teeth pulled, it turned out, wasn't the answer. she was still sad and tired from the moment she got up in the morning. finally one doctor suggested that she wasn't sick, it was her nerves, a diagnosis that she decided was maybe right. she needed to be busier to quit thinking about herself so much, and so she got a job. >> guest: well, you know, women didn't work very much in the '50s. unless you had to, but if you could afford not to, you stayed home. she was just the whole issue of health. i mean, i look at a lot of 18th century health issues and think, gosh, if modern medicine would have been there, this would have been so different. i think it's the same with my
1:33 am
mother. but when she got her job, it was as secretary to the police chief. and a few years later she became a deputy sheriff. and she was so proud of her badge. when she would come back to see us in washington, d.c., she kind of carried it and showed it to people. partly because it was so unbelievable. here was a woman, and she was a deputy sheriff in casper, wyoming. i also think she provided a model for me. it's good to be busy in your life. it is good. and if you find work that is rewarding, you're very lucky. >> host: did she go to college? >> guest: no. >> host: did she finish high school? >> guest: yes. but my grandmother, her mother, came to wyoming with my grandfather to work -- my grandfather was going to work in the salt creek oilfields which is about 60 miles from casper. and through long, hard winters, i mean, they were very poor, my grandmother raised five children in a tent with wooden sides. i know. i mean, you think of these women
1:34 am
like vaughn, like this grandmother, i could, you know, go on, these women were so strong. >> host: eleanor in texas. eleanor, what's the name of your town in texas? >> guest: it's wax hatch chi, texas. >> host: thank you, ma'am. where is that? >> caller: it's south of dallas. >> host: all right. go ahead and ask your question or make your comment, ma'am. >> caller: okay. my comment is this. i'm so full of gratitude to vice president cheney and lynne cheney, his wife, the second lady. they were unbeatable during that time when everyone was so shaken
1:35 am
up by the 9/11 attack. >> guest: well, that's, that is just so kind of you that you're making me a little bit weepy. but thank you for those thoughts, and i will certainly pass them on to dick. >> host: even though you've been out of office for quite a while, do you still have any official commitments or official roles? do you get invited to certain things? >> guest: well, in wyoming where lots of our friends show up in august, you know, we go out a lot. and that's just fun. you know, these are people we've known for such a long time, and some of them don't want to do the winter in wyoming anymore, but that's great. and when we're back here, we have trends. but, you know, it's not official really. >> host: do you -- you're out there eight months. do you spend the winters in wyoming? >> guest: it varies. oh, of course. we were there all of january and february this year. i will tell you it's not as easy
1:36 am
as it was when i was younger. you know, you worry about slipping in the parking lot at the grocery store. there i go talking about the grocery store again. [laughter] gosh, it's beautiful. i've got a wonderful picture taken at christmas time of the lights are on in the house, and there's a moose in our backyard. you know, a christmas moose, i call him. he's eating our willows, of course. but that's okay. he's so beautiful. >> host: jane, chicago. go ahead, please. >> caller: hi, lynne, thank you so much. i'm enjoying this program very much. i also appreciate you and your husband's service to our country. >> guest: well, thank you. >> caller: i think you were there just as we needed you. i am so grateful that you and the bushes were there for 9/11. you helped the whole country get through that. but i wanted to know if you think we will ever get to the point where people limit their public service that they -- on
1:37 am
their own, that they don't spend whole careers like 50 years in the senate? >> guest: well, you know, there are term limits now for president at least. i think public life may be -- but this isn't answering your question. i'm thinking that people maybe don't want to go into it as much as they used to because it's become so contentious and so difficult. once you are an incumbent, though, it's not so difficult. and since these people are the ones that would have to pass term limits, i'm not sure i see it happening. it's also the case, though, that there is wisdom gained. you know, i think dick was much wiser after he'd served ten years in congress than he would have been, much more prepared to be secretary of defense. and i realize he's changing jobs, but there is wisdom that comes from experience, and i'm
1:38 am
positive that that time as secretary of defense was crucial to his being able to deal wisely with the job as vice president. so there is this other side to it. but i know what you mean. there are definitely some people who have overstayed their usefulness. >> host: time for a few more calls with our guest. jim is in jackson, ohio. jim, hi. >> caller: hello. >> guest: hi, jim. >> caller: yes, in traveling from the state of ohio to visit my family out in washington state, we've crisscrossed wyoming many times, really enjoyed it. >> guest: good. >> caller: i have a question about the book you wrote called "telling the truth." i was just wondering if you might make comments on why you wrote it and does it still have relevance today? and perhaps to put it in context in today's world. >> guest: i think it does, certainly, have relevance. it came out of my experience
1:39 am
dealing with people in the humanities who'd moved in a direction that i thought wasn't helpful. the whole direction thing, you know, there's no truth, there's no right, there's no wrong. one of my favorite responses to this idea that there's no right and wrong, there's just how you think about it and i think about it, was to say that i knew things that were wrong. slavery, for example, was wrong. now, that's a very hard assertion to challenge. but that's what this book is about. and i still think we have a lot of this happening in our colleges and in our schools. the whole idea that, well, what you thought was great when you were young really isn't so great because, you know, for example, the united states' victory in world war ii wasn't really great because we interned japanese. now, we shouldn't have done
1:40 am
that, but there was rationale for it at the time. and even recognizing that there may have been error there doesn't heene that the whole -- doesn't mean that the whole thing wasn't great. so that was the notion that i was trying to battle then. don't think i won, but i think it's still going on today and is something we need to be aware of. >> host: one would sometimes think, you write in "telling the truth" from reading today's textbooks that the founders of this country were a most singularly flawed group of men. >> guest: it's true. the best example of this is to read howard zinn's "history of the american people." that's his story. >> host: and we had an e-mail here from somebody about howard zinn, and it was about, that howard zinn focused on people as you talked about focusing on personalities and maybe that was an area where you agreed with
1:41 am
howard zinn. >> guest: i doubt there are many, to tell you the truth. [laughter] >> host: and i apologize, i'm misquoting the e-mail, but i'll look for it. next call is another jim, this one in per sillville, virginia. hi, jim. >> caller: hi, thanks. i'm sorry, i was confused with your earlier caller jim, but i just want to say i have a daughter bella too, and i'm going to get her a is for abigail. i'm just wondering if a part of ms. cheney would want to vote for hillary? and if not, would she win? [laughter] >> guest: no, i won't support mrs. clinton, but, no, i don't see myself running either. i do think it's a better world than it was when i was growing up in that we have women moving into higher positions. how many are in the senate now? i think 14. we're going to have more and more chances to vote for women, but i don't think i will ever vote for someone just because of gender. i will vote for someone whom i
1:42 am
think will make this country a secure, a more secure and better place. >> host: are you having fun watching the 2016s? >> guest: oh, gee. i mean, you know, it's terrifying and interesting, and i've never seen anything like it. >> host: here's that e-mail, just so i didn't misquote michael in fargo. i'm glad to hear your comment that the way to teach history is to focus on the people, this is what howard zinn did in his aptly-titled "people's history of the u.s.," can you offer any thoughts about mr. zinn's contributions to our country? >> guest: well, is it -- michael, did you say? i think, michael, that was a good question. [laughter] >> host: nathan's in san antonio. hi, nathan. please go ahead, just a few minutes left. >> caller: hey, how you doing? it's an honor to speak to you, mrs. cheney. >> guest: good to speak to you. >> caller: yeah, i had a question with the founding
1:43 am
fathers, and you had discussed name and legacy. what do you think of your husband's legacy as the guy who brought back torture? [laughter] d would a good children's book be be w is for waterboarding or w is for war criminal -- >> host: nathan, what do you do in san antonio? >> caller: i work. >> host: you want to tell us anything about yourself? >> caller: i grew up quaker, and i'm antiwar. maybe that's it, or maybe it's that the gloves came off after 2011 or whatever the excuse was for, and i think it's wrong. if he does go to the international criminal court, and if he does get prosecuted -- i know he can't travel in certain countries -- are you going to visit him this prison? >> host: that's nathan in san antonio.
1:44 am
>> guest: nathan in san antonio can't just say those things without my answering. you've heard, i know you probably heard that most important information that we got that kept us from suffering another attack after 3,000 people had been killed in the first one came from khalid sheikh mohammed. there were three people who were waterboarded, and california leak shake mohammed produced information that was absolutely vital to saving more lives. let me just say, though, that i appreciate your quaker heritage and salute your belief in peace. i just am firmly convinced that the way you get to peace is through having a strong national security defense and policy. >> host: lynne cheney is the author of 13 books, she's a scholar at the american enterprise institute, she's the former chair of the national endowment for the human the cities. the e-mail, and kate repeats something that we talked about earlier in the program, but just
1:45 am
in case people weren't listening then. mrs. cheney, dolley madison appears to have been a very highly intelligent, politically-savvy and active woman. is there any evidence that she influenced her husband's ideas and thinking about the form of our new government in creating the bill of rights, and is the story about dolley saving the white house relics when the british burned the white house true or just legend? >> guest: you know, i don't think dolley was a policy person, so i think that the answer is, no. you know, she wasn't telling james that we have to have a bill of rights. she wasn't doing that kind of thing. actually, they weren't married then. [laughter] she wasn't telling james what to do about the war of 1812. yes, the story about her saving the washington portrait is true, though it has become distorted over years. the historical evidence is that she asks someone in the white house to cut it out of the
1:46 am
frame. it was rolled up and sent off with a mr. carroll for safety. and she did say some -- save some other things. she put silver in her tote bag. so, yes, yes, that story's true, though it has been exaggerated. >> host: time for two more calls. we're going to begin with tom in hollywood, florida. tom, just a few minutes left. >> caller: thank you for taking my call. i would like to say to mrs. cheney thank you and your husband for your service. >> guest: thank you. >> caller: and a comment on the japanese internment during the second world war. >> guest: good. >> caller: i believe that the colombian government at that time was greatly compromised by activities from the japanese populace in that country. and i think roosevelt was looking at that, and that's what caused the internment. although i don't completely
1:47 am
agree that everybody should have been interned. all the japanese should have been. and they a bit overdid it. but i think that was the fear. >> guest: well, that's interesting. >> caller: and i would like to pass on to your husband thanks for standing up and speaking out about the administration as it -- and the, oh, well, the failure of what they've done to really stand up for america. >> guest: thank you. thank you, i'll pass that along. >> host: and final word is from sarah in olympia, washington. hi, sarah, you're on booktv. >> caller: thank you. mrs. cheney, i've got to read all 13 of your books. i'm a reader. [laughter] >> guest: good. >> caller: i, unfortunately, had my career cut off very early. i wanted to be a teacher. i didn't have the chance to do
1:48 am
what i wanted to there, and i'm thinking i've been very patriotic all my life. i've been active in politics on getting people elected sort of thing. what do you think about older people, i mean retired people, knowledgeable people going forward to actually volunteer to run for office? it seems to me there are many young people out there who could use our help. >> guest: i think it's great. i think it's great. i heene, ageism is -- i mean, ageism is a great social impediment just as sexism is. i think if you're fit and energetic and you want to do that, you should. i was also thinking though as you were talking that being a teacher, reading to kids in school, i mean, these -- wow, is that ever needed. especially by someone who knows a little history and wants to share it. >> host: mrs. cheney, do you have to be in good shape for a
1:49 am
presidential campaign? >> guest: oh, my, yes. i have to also say dick did it after five heart attacks. but, you know, it came at a time in his life when he was very fit. he had a bad heart, and we're so lucky now, you know, since he's left the vice presidency, he's had a heart transplant. and it's a miracle, modern medicine. you think how it's changed our world, and when i raze history, i can't help -- read history i can't help think how it could have been different. >> guest: we've got some video we want to of -- to show of you campaigning at ellis island. >> guest: oh, what a wonderful place. >> host: there you are campaigning. what's a normal day of campaigning like in the middle of a presidential -- tell me your schedule. >> guest: well, you know, you just get up and go all day. but the wonderful thing about a political campaign is that you don't do anything else. it just totally absorbs you. you just can't worry about the laundry, you know?
1:50 am
[laughter] it's total energizing and absorbing. >> host: were you handed a piece of paper with your schedule on it in the morning? >> guest: yes. i mean, i went -- i had some part -- maybe not during the campaign, but after in developing it. oh, look at those little girls, they've grown so big now. >> host: do you remember that day? >> guest: yes. >> host: or do they start to bartend? >> guest: i see those little girls, and i remember that day. >> host: lynne cheney. author, scholar, second lady for eight years and the author of these books, a couple of novels, executive privilege and sisters, '79 and '81. tyrannical machines came out in 1990 on educational practices. telling the truth, which we've talked about quite extensively today, 1996, why our culture and our country have stopped making sense and what we can do about it. kings of the hill written with her husband about house of representatives. children's books while second
1:51 am
lady, america: a patriotic primer, 2002. a is for abigail, an alma that can of amazing women, 2003. when washington crossed the delaware, a time for freedom, 2005. our 50 states, another children's book in 2006, and blue skies, no fences, her memoir, 2007. we the people, her last children's book, was in 2008. and then james madison, a bestseller, a life reconsidered, came out in 2014. lynn cheney for the last three hours has been our guest on booktv's "in depth." >> guest: went fast.
1:52 am
>> >> your watching booktv prime time with congress out with our usual weekend coverage of books and authors every weekend on c-span2 but tonight we want to show you our "in-depth" programs. this is our monthly of their program we invite one author to talk about his or her body of work the first sunday of every month it is a call-in program very interactive with your text and the bells in the info calls. tavis smiley, isaac -- walter isaacson one person rodriquez peter schweitzer


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on