tv C-SPAN Weekend CSPAN January 17, 2011 2:00am-6:00am EST
people. when mr. obama was disrespected at the last time of the union when the man said he was lying, he isn't lying. he isn't giving health care to no illegals. host: well, that point of true also goes to issue of democrats and republicans sitting together side by side, which is something that seems to be gaining steam. to that point and to his point about everyone lying, john. caller: h guest: well, let me address the first thing first. i've been to several states of the union and over the last 20 years, it's kind of devolved into a competition about who can stand up or sit do you know the first and really taken away from the discussion of the president's giving. and i think that one of the best things about having the members interspersed is kind of i think will cut do you know on
this cheer leading competition that happens. i think that -- i don't think that politicians lie. i think that they put the best gloss on their side soft story. and i do think that with 30-second commercials they hammer home on those. i think they distort on both sides and i think that's the nature of the political campaigns. and i agree with the caller that we need to truthfully face the problems that are hitting this country, especially when it comes to spending because we scompli cannot afford to spend the way we have without revenue and no one wants to raise taxes and the government is too big and spends tooch. so i think that's the kind of discussion. and facing the truth is important. guest: as long as we have that discussion with an honest and open way and acknowledge that some of the cuts that we're going to make will have a real impact on real lives. just going back to what john was saying about state and local governments.
i agree. my mother used to be a labor negotiator and many local governments are just crushed under their obligations for pensions. at the same time, i feel like what we always seem to forget when we're having that conversation is that many of those deals were put together so that in lieu of cost of living increases or other types, that others in the private sector were getting, public sector employees, this was kind of the trade-off. so if we're now going to say pensions are the problem, let's also remember that people did give something up to get to that point. and again, if we're going to make cuts, it's going to have an impact. and one of the opportunities that president obama has, part of why he was so effective as a campaigner, is we don't have to buy into this either/or rhetoric of it's the end of the world, it's the best thing since sliced bread. wait, how do we fwigyur out the right decision for now. >> let me put a couple numbers
on the table. the number of residential home foreclosures. in 2008 it was 1.12 million. only one state had a budget shortfall, michigan. in 10 to 1048 states. and finally the budget deficit in 2007 was $101 billion year to year. >> well, it's extraordinary. we are in one sense all to blame for the housing bubble that occurred. and it's the government had a role. i think the private marketplace had a role. i think consumers had a role. and we are just dealing with that bubble. i mean, this is what's happened to us post collapse of the bubble is very typical of what happened back with the tuleyip bubble back in the 16th century. this is what happens.
people get hurt. state governments get hurt. the federal government gets hurt. and we have to climb our way out of it. and we're not out of it yet. that's why the foreclosures are still fairly high. too many people are filing foreclosures. guest: i think john is right too. on some level we all know we have to make cuts as long as it doesn't impact me. so as long as it's not my kids' school or my neighborhood. again, we're at a place where we have to have a very honest frank discussion about the kinds of cuts that need to be made and what those impacts are going to be. host: our next call, good morning. caller: good morning. well, i am a young person, if you could say that. i'm 20 years old and i am a student of arizona state university. i am also a recent transplant of louisville, kentucky. and just the state of politics
these days seems to be very concerning to both me and my demographic. i've been here for a few months, and last saturday i was at work when the shootings happened, and it was extremely disturbing to everyone. everyone was so worried. there were natives from the reservation, they were worried about how it would reflect upon them. there were hispanics who were scared that it was the mexican mafia that might be behind it and might inspire, if you want to say, a race war. and when it turned out to be a mentally disturbed young man it was almost a relief because arizona is a tinder box right now and it is a very disturbing place to be. you can say all the things you want to say about mitch or the
south or kentucky but honestly, it has no comparison to the state of politics here right now in arizona where peoe are just worried about the next little thing could set off something much larger. host: karen. guest: well, i think the caller is right. we can say that obviously the young man last week who was engaged in the sheeting clearly had long-term mental illness that seems like for a variety of reasons was not caught at points where it should have been and could have been. that being said, i think many of us were very concerned that some of the rhetoric that we heard in arizona particularly around some immigration and some of the other. and i think that's one of the things we have to be accountable for. if we take an issue and demagogue it and turn it into immigration reform is one we tend to do it the most where we
deemize or scape gothe one group of people and play on people's fears that's the kind of climate we have. i thought it was interesting to note that daniel hernandez is a naturalized citizen. i would say i'm glad he is in the united states of america, i'm glad he is a naturalized citizen. but i would say there are wonderful people trying to become united states citizens. so let's have a real conversation on that issue. host: we'll go to jim next, louisiana, with john and karen. good morning. caller: good morning. i got a question about this civility stuff. it seems like all of a sudden it's everybody should be hand in hand and if these republicans fall for this thing that's the democrats want to sift together, the only reason
they want to sit together is because they don't have as many representatives as the republicans. now, they didn't want this when they were in the majority because they had more people. guest: well, this morning jim called it a kumbaya moment and has put together some discussions. attorney general eric holder would be joined by darrell issa who has called obama one of the most corrupt administrations. also sonya society my or and elena kagen would sit between jeff sessions and to keep things lively, michelle backman who wants people armed and dangerous to fight the energy bill should sit with senator john kerry an energy bill author and mitch mcconnell would probably want to be near al franken who made funny faces during a debate.
guest: where you sit does not change or should it where you stand on the issues. i think republicans are commited to their agenda which is mostly going to be getting us to be fiscally responsible again and create jobs in the private sector. and i think that the caller -- both callers make an important point. we have been as a country under great economic stress. this has impacted a lot of people in a lot of different ways in many parts of suburbia you see foreclosed homes all over the place. these homes were the embodiment of the american dream and now people, it has become a nightmare. so we shouldn't under estimate how impassioned people feel when their livelihoods have been snuffed out. and i think we do face, especially the 20-year-old who just called, they face even more stark choices in the future.
the debt we are putting on these kids, and also the how hard we make it for them to get into college and how expensive college is. all of these things add up. and the reason we need to have civil debate from washington is because washington needs to be a leader in providing civil debate in the rest of the country. but that doesn't mask the effect that people in the rest of the country are hurting and need some direction. guest: if i could add to that by saying we ought to have civil debate, personally i don't think we should go to some kind of knee jerk reaction the other direction a pc movement. i think it's important that weaf vigorous discussion and debate. we can disagree. john and i do it all the time. but there's a way that we can have that conversation and disagree that's constructive and that flushes out the issues rather than name calling or
making it pirnl. that's where when we talk about the civility, that's where it goes over the edge. where we talk about -- and again scape goating groups of people. that's where it goes over the edge. but certainly that's not to say both sides should not vigorously defend and present their sides of the argument. host: one of our viewers say this point. guest: that's a danger that comes in when washington gets too cozy and don't reflect the views of the people back home. it becomes a party insider party versus the outsiders which is the rest of the country. and the whole issue with the banking industry, really the tarp was centered by president bush continued by president obama. it was essential to making sure that people, the banking industry would stay open without a banking industry
functioning you really do have complete anarchy in the country. that being said it was extraordinarily unpopular for democrats and republicans who voted for this thing. and that's that view irmakes an important point, which is both parties have to reflect the values of their constituents and not just cut deals without understanding where their voters are coming from. host: roger, independent line. caller: first, i'd like to say that there was a strong point where they say that it's a person's actions. republicans and democrats sitting side by side at the state of the unian address means nothing because for them to sit next to each other thinks exactly the same. i don't like the way you think, i don't like the way you think. i don't like you and you don't like me.
me shaking hands for five minutes, smiling next to you two hours and acting like something has changed for one day isn't anything except what the american people have come to realize, that come to think of as politicians just lie. we look at obama and i'm an african american man. so i'm giving him cudos as far as being the first african american president. but when he was standing up there talking about this is too big to fail, this is too big to fail, he was at the same time saying that you're too small to matter. you're too small to matter. because i'm willing to give these people this money so we can stop systemic breakdown that the country and blah blah when the actual matter is that the economy is based on the small businessman, not the big
corporate banking system. you know? so when you go out of your way to save people who aren't starving to begin with and allow people who are starving to change the score, then all the back slapping and yeah we're in it together now because this crucial thing happened in the country. host: i'm going to stop you there. you've put a lot of things on the table. guest: i think what roger is expressing the views of a lot of people who are probably looking at this idea of ok they're going to sit together but what does that really mean. and again, i think it's meant to be a gesture. again, it does not mean that there are not very strong disagreements. but if we can keep those focused on the issues and not make them personal, i think that's important. and i think that's what people are trying to do.
i hope it works. after 9/11 we had about a good three to four months of real compassion for one another in a way that we hadn't seen in a long time and then it began to dissipate. and i would hope this could be a moment that we check ourselves and begin to bring it back. and the point john made. it's not just the economic trauma that americans have been suffering under but you can't underestimate the psychological impact of war. we have been at war for a very long time. and i think the combination of all those things i have to believe it's been draining on the american people for a very long time. host: there's an e-mail from one of our viewers. guest: probably in the period between 1995 and 2000 when they
were doing real conflict with president clinton and they really offered budgets that cut spending to the bone. and i think what happened is you had a surplus. and what happens when you get a surplus is people spend more money. and the other thing that happened, and karen makes an important point about the impact of the war. we tend to forget about, unfortunately, about the real sacrifice of a fairly small percentage of our country and the daily sacrifice of the families an the troops that go and are fighting the wars for us. there needs to be a sense oofer shared sacrifice about that war and i think we are under the daily stress of the terrorists and that is that we walk through t.s.a. and we walk through the worries about the caller earlier said the shooting in arizona. we weren't sure if that was a
terrorist act. so these are the kind of stresses that build up with people. it's not surprising that there be a breakout of incivility on occasion. host: let me turn to politics. in the national review. guest: i was always maintain i don't think his ry election is in jepty. i think he is doing what's right for the country. one thing i will say about polling. i saw this with bush and i
think we see this with obama. when your favorability ratings are high and people like you, sort of honest and trust worthyness, to me, tend to be the most important numbers because if people like you they're more willing to say well even if i disagree with you i'm going to give you a chance and see what you can do. i do think that people appreciate the fact that obama may not have always used all of the tools of the presidency in terms of the theet ricks but i think is trying to do the right thing. guest: you have to give the president, he's a favorite right now in the next reelection. republicans have to come up with a candidate that can be plausible and credible. and they have a lot out there but they have to go through that process. host: we hear mitt romney is likely to announce in april, rick santorum was in new hampshire last weekend and tim
paultenty is out with a new book. guest: i think romney and paul enty are the top two most credible candidates. karen's point, the president is in one sense very lucky that he has republicans in congress because not only are they a foil but they also drag the president closer to the middle and have more responsible policies. we saw this with bill clinton. he was on the ropes in 93 and 94, and then the republicans took over the congress and the country improved economically because of it. so we'll see what happens. i do think that for the president, the most troubling thing for him is the unemployment rate is still persistently high. and while his ratings are high, that's why he is is the favorite right now, he's got to be worried about that because
unemployment and under employment is not a healthy economy. host: jim saying mitt mandate romney question mark not a chance. and that sentiment is strong. guest: no question. the reason i say romney is one of the favorites is because he came in second place last time. but the health care debate is something that he has got to deal with because people are saying that the obama care is just a bigger version of romney care and that's not good for mitt romney. guest: it's been interesting to watch mitt romney trying to walk away from what he did in massachusetts because there are many similarities between what romney did in massachusetts and the affordable health care act. so i think that will sbernl a presidential issue. i do feel i ought to come back around on something that john said. president clinton and the republicans in congress worked together but i would not say
that it was the republicans who dragged him into fiscal responsibility. guest: i would. guest: i know you would. but i think you've got to give president clinton some credit. again it was a democratic president who left the country with a surbluss and a republican president who spent that money. and one of the things i personally find very disconcerting with the way that john boehner is approaching the budget is he's bragging about going from paying to cut go. now the way he's redone them, you don't have to account for lost revenue for things that get cut. so in terms of repealing the affordable health care act, if you believe, as many do including the cbo that's going to reduce the deficit, there don't even have to according to the budget account for where are we going to make up the rest of that money. that's not exactly responsible
budgeting. host: our guests karen and john. back to your calls. democrat's line. good morning. caller: yes. when you were pushing the tax cuts, you were saying that it was to create jobs. but yet, you had them forp ten years and two years prior to that. how many jobs did you create with tax cuts for the very
wealthy? host: the bush era tax cuts. did they create jobs or only add to the deficit? guest: unemployment during the bush years was about 5.3%. so it was actually, they did create jobs. they created jobs in very difficult circumstances after 9/11 we had a tremendous shock to the economy, unemployment that didn't nt go up to 10%. unemployment stayed fairly constant. the fact of the matter is that if you give more money to job creators, more jobs will be created. and if you raise taxes on job creators, they're going to create less jobs. it's just a truth, an economic truth. so i do think that the bush tax cuts, which were successful, which is why democrats cut them off. democrats were in control of
the congress and they didn't repeal the bush tax cuts like they said they were going to do, the president didn't repeal the tax cuts. they've actually kept them going. so yes, guest: come on, john. again, in order to -- guest: because they're worried that job increases -- >> guest: it wasn't just that president obama said let's continue the bush tax cuts. furl, we had a pretty vigorous discussion about if we do this then here are some other things, including as you mentioned earlier, let's make college very affordable. college is very important. making sure that we have a workforce that is prepared for 21st century jobs, something that president obama has talked about again and again. so making those investments now i think he is right to talk about. let's also remember that when president obama came into office we were losing, what,
700,000 jobs a month or something crazy like this and now we're actually, granted, not to the degree that we need to, we are creating jobs. so i'm not sure you can draw the direct correlation between bush tax cuts and job creation. i think we had a lot of problems that we're now digging ourselves out of. host: if you're listening on c-span radio, our guests, john, and karen. there was a moment at the white house briefing in case you missed it i wanted to share it with you. it was a russian reporter asking about the president's speech in tuscon and the shooting that took place. >> this is america. the democracy is the freedom of speech, the freedom of assembly. and many people outside would also say, and the quote/unquote freedom to react in a violent
way is also america. how do you respond? >> what's the last part? >> the quote/unquote freedom of the deranged mind to react violently to them, it is also american. >> i would disagree vehemently with that. there's nothing in the values of our country, there's nothing on the many laws on our books that would provide for somebody to impune and impede on the very freedoms that you begin with by exercising the actions that that individual took on that day. that is not american. host: the question, do americans have too many freedoms? guest: coming from a russian talking about a violent society, russia is a mob oksy.
if you're a journalist, you're lucky to be alive. if you make money and criticize putin you're going to be put in the ghouling a. americans have a lot of freedoms. russia, you're lucky if you speak out if you're going to li the next day. guest: be careful john. host: karen. guest: you know, it's a tough question because, it's interesting that the shooting happened the week after we had the reading of the constitution, which i think is an opportunity to go back and reflect on the rights and privileges that we have in america, which i am very grateful for, i know we all are. and our democracy, we are constantly trying to make it better. and i believe that with our second amendment rights there have got to be ways that we can protect that right but then ensure that people like mr. love anywhere don't get any weapons in their hands.
and i think that's a part of making our democracy a more perfect union. host: she calls herself the jazz chick. guest: o you know, can't say. it's an incredible hon tor have been mentioned to be on the short list. it's one of the most incredible jobs in the world. and we'll just have to see what happens. host: if asked. guest: would i serve? host: my question is, what would you bring to the job? and in today's 24/7 sbrit driven news cycle how would you approach the position? guest: i guess i would try to approach it with a sense of humor, because again it's a very tough job and i think you can't take it personal and you've got to do the best you can to be as forth right and forth coming with answers as you can be.
i've always felt like as a press secretary or communications director there's really sort of a dance between reporters and what we do. reporters are trying to get a story, we're trying to either help you with your story and sometimes get our own story out in how you negotiate that. sometimes it all comes together beautifully and sometimes not. but i think if you approach it that way it becomes less personal. and you're better able to sort of understand what people are trying to write and what you are also trying to get out there. host: in the interest of full disclosure with mike as white house press secretary we supported the idea of having cameras televise the briefings in their entirety. it began with george as the clinton press secretary. marlin would have the first five to ten minutes on camera and then off camera. is it helpful or hurtful to have cameras in the white house briefing room cover the entire briefing? guest: it's a very interesting question. and i think that the media
reporters, television reporters want that. they feel it's unfair to them if you give the bulk of the actual facts off the record. you know, i hope karen gets the job. i think you would be terrific at it. guest: thanks. guest: it's a high honor to work for a president in that kind of position. you know, you really do want to work the room before you're in front of the cameras to find out what's going to happen and u also want to be i think in that job as truthful as possible. you are truthful. and i think you are a sales man or sales person for the president in that job and that's the most important thing. but you also have to be a salesperson for the press inside the administration. and that puts you in a difficult spot. it's kind of, when i was press
zobet the speaker, it's the same type of thing although at a much higher level. you know, i think that the reason why you want to have it only for the first five minutes is that you want that to be your message, but it's awfully unfair to part of the journalism field that is trying to make news. and i think that the best way to handle it in my view is to make sure that you have gotten all the facts on background before you go before the camera and then let the briefing commence as it does. guest: i also think that given we flive a 24 hour news cycle which we have cable which has need for zpwr video you have to have some sensitivity, whether or not is it about how much you do briefings on camera versus how much you just make sure people are getting the information or the access that they need. one thing that john said that i
want to pick up on though i feel like in these positions that we have, the most important thing we have is our credibility. so i think we always want to make sure that you are conducting yourself in a way, no matter who you work for where you can feel good at the end of the day that you are credible, did the best you can kind of person. host: michael curry said in the past, press secretaries need to tell the truth slowly. guest: sometimes when you get in the back and forth, i've had that advice given before, you can slow do you know. because there's a tendency to want to rapid fire give the answers back. it's true. sometimes you want to think it through not because you're not being truthful but because you want to be thoughtful how you say certain things. sometimes out of civility and sometimes out of a need to ensure that you're kind of giving the full picture. host: he was in a the difficult spot there because that was in
conjunction with the monica lewinsky thing and i think there's a temperature thing to all of this. but as karen said, you're -- the president can only use you if you're credible. once you lose your credibility they might as well fire you right away. host: two anniversary this week and this is from susan eisenhower who is the grand daughter of dwight d. eisenhower. it was 50 years ago that he gave his fair well address. but as she pointed out in h.r. piece this morning, it may be remembered for those lines but also we cannot mortgage the material assets of our grand chinch without risking the loss also of their political and spiritual heritage. he was speaking 50 years ago to my generation and yet we have not heeded the advice of long term planning for our country's future. guest: i've written about this, about how great a president eisenhower was. he did a couple things that
everyone knows about, but he also left a huge, a surplus for president kennedy and he in this speech he really talked about being responsible, and responsible governance. and i think if we think of anything over the last 50 years it is that we've kind of lost that heritage of real responsible governance. and that means making very difficult tough choices. i am disappointed you got through. the other anniversary i want to share with you is the 50th anniversary of john kennedy's swearg in. there's a piece in vanity fair about the inaugural ceremony. but there's also a moment they highlight. at night, looking out over the mall convinced that he would be back. guest: we have heard that before.
guest: someone wrote about how kennedy's folks actually broke into nixon's papers and that's what inspired nixon to do the water gate burglary. history is a fast nating thing. and the images of these huge characters like john kennedy and dithe eisenhower and richard nixon. everyone should read up on those because they all made interesting choices and they all confronted conflicts. guest: we should mention there's obviously tomorrow we celebrate the birth of dr. martin ludeser king, another great figure in american history. and it's interesting that as we talk about nixon i'm going to have to put an aside here. but certainly these were great men with big vision. and i think we need that right now.
and i think that's part of why people were drawn to president obama. and i hope it's part of why working with the republican congress we can actually accomplish some good responsible things. because if you go back to the message of eisenhower, he was actually taking on everybody a little bit and saying we're all accountable an we're all responsible. and we've all got to share the pain. and i hope that is the tone and tenor of the discussion going forward. with keeping in mind the goals of president kennedy and obviously dr. king. host: the previous caller did not get the memo apparently. but there was a piece in the "washington post," the memorial that will soon be dedicated. guest: it's a great troibt a great man and it's an honor that we celebrate. and a lot of people tomorrow will be participating in the service projects as their way to honor martin luther king.
and again, i think if you look at each of these men an their vision and what delave tributed to our society and our >> tomorrow, on washington journal, a preview of the house agenda with michael lewis -- mike lilli,. then a look at the current economic situation with jon shure. after that, heather peeler on the in al qaeda of service. -- on the morning the king day of service. -- on the martin luther king day of service. tomorrow, on hes bosch on c- span, attorney general eric holder of a per breakfast -- at
a prayer breakfast. that is at 7:00 a.m. eastern here on c-span. >> i believe the best way to carry on dr. king's is to carry on with community service. on the anniversary of martin luther king junior's birth, there are hundreds of programs on mlk. fund a program, watch it, clip it and share it. >> it is time to upload your videoca for your studentsm competition. the deadline is this thursday, so get your video to c-span. of this year's topic is washington d.c. from violence. -- through my lens. for details, goc, studentsam.org. now, a look at job growth in 2011. this is about 35 minutes.
continues. host: we want to wellharry holzer. we want to focus on the jobs picture. this is a map from time magazine looking at the job recovery gap. in the darker areas like texas, the recovery is stronger but in states like ohio, iowa, south dakota, wyoming, pa., and york, is among the weakest. where are the jobs? guest: you can talk about the geography of which locations have had more rapid job growth and we can talk about what sectors of the economy. in terms of geography, it has been uneven. places like ohio and michigan got hit hardest by the loss of manufacturing jobs. those areas have been slower to recover. places that t hit hardest by the housing bubble bursting like places on the coast, florida,
nevada those places have high unemployment. in terms of sectors of the economy, you have seen growth in various place at the high-end of professional services and in the low-end in retail trade and hospitality, we have seen some bounce back in manufacturing. it remains quite small and of course hlth care and elder care has been the one sector that has been strong throughout the entire downturn for host: one of the hardest-hit states continues to be michigan. budget cuts are coming. in 2007, michigan was the only state that faced a budget shortfall. in 2011, 48 states are facing budget shortfalls. for a state like michigan which is trying to get itself out of this, it has been a pattern over the last three-five years at blogger because the auto industry. guest: that's right. this is a classic problem for
states. state budgets are very cyclical. that means that when the ecomy deteriorates, state revenues fall and their expenditures rise grid on like the federal government, states can't borrow and they have lost forcing them to balance the budget. that ps them under budgetary pressure. it is something that makes it harder to recover from the economy. doing things like cutting expenditures to balance the budget then restrikes demands for goods and services further. it becomes a bit of a cycle. host: why is this recession different from previous ones guest:? bid is more severe and as more persistent. this recession was brought on first of all by a housing bauble that hearst and then that burst spread to the financial markets
through the securitization of many mortgages. it spread throughout the financial system. historically, we know that whenever you have a recession created by the bursting of a financial bubble, they are often more severe and it takes longer because businesses and households have a lot of debt on their balance sheets that have to work through. they cannot turn to the kind of spending to help stimulate the economy. it is not unusual in that sense that this kind of recession caused by a bubble would be severe but tech as a long time to recover from current ho. host: you can take a look at the job rebound and a lack of what it would be a robust recovery. where are the middle class jobs? where are the jobs that if the middle class is the underpinning of the u.s. economy, of who is hiring those individuals? how can you get enough to raise
a family, own a home, on a card? guest: you can find those jobs spread throughout the economy. some economists have recently argued that the middle of the job market is completely collapsing are disappearing. i don't think that is true. you see those middle-class jobs and all kinds of places. many of those jobsre in health care at the level of licensed practical nurse or lab technici or x-ray technician. you see them in construction and manufacturing, two sectors that got hit hard but they will bounce back to some extent. you see them throughout the service sector, legal services, protective services, installation maintenance and repair jobs for mechanical systems. they are spread throughout the economy and some of them have started to bnce back and others will take more time host: our guest is a professor at georgetown university and the author of a bo.
there is a piece in time magazine and his point is that the manufacturing jobs are being shipped overseas and they are not coming back. guest: that is true for some of the manufacturing jobs but not all bad. we've gained back about 150,000 of the manufacturing jobs lost. that is a small fraction of the over 2 million that we lost. that is true for manufacturing. some thunder -- some manufacturing remains here. the more specialized manufacturing in many cases likely will remain here. there are many other sectors where jobs will not be shipped overseas or replaced by technology. many kinds of service jobs and health care jobs and retail trade and professional services and even construction which will come back. that particular interpretation applies to some parts of manufacturing but not all that and certainly not the entire economy. host: you sound optimistic.
guest: i am in between. i think it will be a long, hard recover. job growth will be pretty slow. it might take as five years or more to dig our way out of this deep all that we have gotten ourselves into. we have lost over 8 million jobs in this downturn and every year, about 1 million extra people potentially join the labour force. we are about 11 million jobs in the whole right now. we will haveo create three or 4 million jobs to zero absorb the extra population. i am not overly optimistic about the speed of the recovery but i am more optimistic that once we ultimately get there, we can and will continue to create good jobs. i think policy can help that process briefly want to encourage good jobs and make sure that workers have the education and skills needed to fill those jobs. host: another companion story in
usa today is that people are less mobile and they are not moving because there are not as many jobs guest:. some analysts s that is partly because of the housing problem. people are under water on their home mortgages and that makes them less likely to sell their home and no to where new opportunities to exist. that creates another structural impediment to getting people to where the jobs are. i don't think it is insurmountable over the long run. host: manassas, va., airline for republicans, good morning. caller: i wanted to ask about the health-care part of best. it seems that most small businesses are sitting there were about how much it will cost. i wanted to know your opinion of that. guest: i think there has been a lot of discussion recently about the impact of the very large health care bill.
some folks on the republican side of the i'll have labeled it a job-kille first of all, really small businesses with 50 employees or less are exempt from the requirements the bill provides for health care. many firms above 50 either already provide that care or they will have several options if they don't. for instance, the requirement to provide health care does not apply to employees working less than 30 hours. some of them can opt out completely if they pay a relatively modest fine per worker. there might be impacts on full- time jobs but in other ways, the bill might create more jobs either in the health-care sector or if it is successful in reducing the cost of health care over time, i think that would be a positive and that might offset some of the effects on jobs.
i don't view this as a large job-killer as it has been described by republicans in this debate. host: there's a story in usa today about the job outlook f 2011. the unemployment rate which is 9.7%, iseen 9.3% = - expected to drop to 8.7% with employees at about 100,000 jobs per not -- per month. guest: that's correct. different forecasts imply different amount of job growth. with new people entering the labour force all the time, we need 125,000 jobs or so to break-even. that is to absorb the new people entering the labour force. the amount of job growth above 150,000 will start to bring down the unemployment rate.
that particular projection for 183,000 per month generates a little bit of net growth above population growth but not enough to move the unemployment rate quickly. that prediction will be a little bit under 9% sounds all right to me host:. south plainfield, new jersey, good morning. caller: i want to say the ho mr.lzer does not have a clue as to what is happening in the health-care field. i have been a nurse for 40 years. the first thing the state has do is close 19 hospitals. they are laid off nurses and you cannot get into a school to become a nurse. when you get out, there are no jobs. they have done away with a licensed practical nurses. our health-care growth is only at the bottom. nurses' aides, home health aides, they called and technicians but they are people off the streets that they train for these jobs and these people
were making minimum wages and if they work for 40 years, they make $20 per hour. that is not a middle class jobs. health care is not the growth in this state. guest: i have to respectful disagree. healthcare h bn growing over the last three years. it is so different than any other sector of the onomy. what she did described as budgetary pressure. the cuts in publicl financed parts of health care and some other places, of course in a down turnhis state, you will see some decline and pressure. she accately points out where it has occurred. over the long term, assuming some bounce back in the economy, there is no queion that employment will grow. it is the most reliable sector for growth over time. based on all the projections. i believe that growth will
occur in the lower-paying jobs as she described also in the middle-paying jobs and i and as well. if there has been a flattening out and limiting of demand as some of those sectors, that will occur during a severe downturn. that is not what the long-term projection suggests perry host: independent line, you are next caller:. long-term projections sounds like a country that will be looking for theealth-care industry to take off and that is not a bright future for america. my question is on the housing bubble. where can the government find the resources to buy all these houses during the welfare program? after owning all the houses, isn't that what the housing bubble is all about, house is not being managed properly? can you enlighten me how the
welfare program plays into the housing bobbled guest:? ? guest: if you're talking about what we traditionally call welfare which is cash assistance to low-income people, that program has been dramatically scaled back in the last 15 years so it has almost nothing to do with this problem. the housing bubble occurred because of a combination of money flowing in from overseas and the federal reserve kept interest rates low for a long time and that caused a lot of demand to be channeled into the housing industry. there were a certain set of policies. that encouraged more people to own homes and that played into the subprime mortgage process. that bubble took on its own momentum for many reasons. i cannot see pinning it on what we call welfare programs. host: our guest is the author of
the book, "where are all the job -- good jobs? going" we are joined from palm desert, california. caller: it is not a big mystery and collapse never gets it. it is high union demand that drive jobs overseas. you cannot invest in a business and make money with the high union demands that get worse and worse. that is always supported by the left. they just drive the companies where they can make money. people will not invest if they cannot make money. the right to work idea is good and it is about time the left woke up on many things. thank you. guest: i'm afraid that's another area where i will he to respectfully disagree. only 7% of private-sector workers in america are unionized. it has been droing for 55 years.
to the extent that jobs a moving overseas to china and elsewhere, very frequently, is mostly non-union jobs that are being eliminated. partly this new technology and reducing the cost of bringing imports into the country. it is also the development of the chinese economy and the growth of their technological sophistication and manufacturing and this enormous wage gap. if there was no unions and the guide states, labor costs would still be much higher in the u.s. than china and thi process would still occur. i don't think it's fair to pin this on the unions. one might have other reasons to agree or disagree. peing this problem on them i think is misplaced host. host: looking at job gwth this year and projected for next year, only 8.5% of the newly created jobs will be for those
who have less than a high-school education. 38% of the new jobs in the next year or two will be those who have a bachelor's degree or higher. we were talking the last half hour about the education difference between the u.s. and china with american students. gut: i think that is an important issue. your numbers indicate that if you consider high-school or less, we consider that these days the lower end because that involves no post-secondary education. that level of jobs will continue to contribute about 1/3 of jobs. a little over that will be in the high end. that leaves a big chunk in the ddle requiring some kind of secondary education or training. it might be at a community college or elsewhere. in general, americans are not getting the levels and quality of education that they need to
sustain a lot of the good job growth over time. even if we can find jobs for these people over time and we will, they will be very good- ying jobs. we need to make sure that the education and training is relevant for the kind of jobs we create. i think that is high on the priority list of hos. host: the atlantic magazine has charts and graphs on job growth poverty in the u.s., the number of people in poverty increased from 37.3 million to 43.5 million. the most recent figure is from 2009 and food stp recipients are up in florida, nevada, and new york almost 60% in florida, 63% in nevada, and 30% in new york state our live for democrats is next, good morning para caller.
caller: i was going to answer the question by saying that china and india are where the drugs are. these are poor countries with cheaper labor. i am sure there government does not get paid what people in our government gets paid. guest: i think you are right. the cost of labor in places like china and india is much ler than the united states. that is why some jobs drift over there. there are other reasons f other jobs to stay here. construction jobs, retail trade jobs, all kinds of professional services are not going to move overseas. they have to be where the customers are. technology and the internet have made it easier to shift some jobs overseas but many businesses require skills that american workers have. there's also a positive side to
the international trade. we export a lot of goods and services as well. we would not want to have a system that cuts off international trade because that would hurt our exports as well as our imports. those imports provide benefits to american consumers. american consumers like buying good products at below was priced as poible. millions of americans shop i stores that rely heavily on the chinese imports. that is because they are lower in cost and price and that saves the american consumer a lot of money. it is a complicated equation. it hurts american workers in to help them more to get them back on their feet and find new work jobs. it is a more complicated thing and we generate a lot of benefits as well as costs from our trade system. host: u.s. universities are graduates m and far moreba's than engineers. guest: if the mba's can't find
jobs, enrollees will start switching to other schools. in general, it would be helpful if we could get more americans studying engineering and science and math and competing more effectively in those fields. host: our guest is a professor of public policy at georgetown university. caller: i have a few points to make. if we elimina the waste, fraud, and abuse in the country, how many less people will we need in this country? how many more willose their jobs? what about military cuts? how much of our economy is dependent on the military and how many willose their jobs if we cut it? the idea of a living wage and a 40-hour workweek, is that socialism? i went to night school in the
1950's. i am long in the two. there will work to an korean veterans there. going to school to use of their benefits because they were getting subsistence benefits at the same time. even though you're educating people, they were not really interested that much and being educated. you are paying people to go to school and maybe that is what you have to do now to get them into engineering. guest: the caller made some interesting points. i think the evidence shows that the gi bill after world war two was a positive. in terms of lifting the education levels in the u.s. economy. i would like to see us provide more support to people. we do that already to a large extent, but providing the kinds of -- financial support that people need is one of several
different tools that might help us get more people the education they need for the future economy and the good-payi jobs barrett host. host: our next call is from fairfax, virginia. caller: there is a 20% cost difference between a typical landed imports from china verses what we can make it for here. please check out this reference. it is called outsourcing cost index. the national association of manufacturing has a similar estimate. all we would need to do is to have a 15% tax cut or credit and i would target it at manufacturing because we cannot do across the board. it is too expensive. a corporate-only cut would not expect the past record companies. thank you very much. guest: if that number is correct, it probably masks a
wide range of numbers that average out to 20%. there are some areas where the cost differential is more substantial. 20% is not even a small number. it leaves incentives for many companies to outsource. providing an across-the-board tax credit aed at manufacturing alone to offset that would probably be very expensive. i am not sure that that is the best way to invest our scarce resources. if in fact some of those products are produced more efficiently overseas, it is inevitable some things will go ther we have to generate areas at home wheree can compete more efficitly and effectively and we do that already in many, many sectors. many jobs are not goingverseas but there are other ways in which we can improve our productivity to try to maintain our ability to compete rather than this large across-the-board tax credit which might be expensive.
host: according to the labor department, 15 million americans are currently out of work and many more are under-employed a guest: if you count the under- employed, you are talking about 60% - 70% -- 16 percent a - 17%. host: from salt lake city, independent line, good morning. caller: i'm a first-time caller. i had a question about tax cuts creating jobs and that is why we need to continue the tax cuts bridge is there truth to that? guest: all else equal, if you did nothing else but cut taxes, that would help create jobs. it is not a very efficient tool for creating jobs. a lot of the tax cut money is not spent.
tax cuts create jobs only of people spend the money. it is a fairly effective way to stimulate demand. tax cuts for high-income people, most of that money does not g spent. out andon't go and run end their tax break if they make over two other $50,000. the question is where these tax cuts will come from. we are already running deficits and they are projected to become more 3 if you have to cut government spending to finance the tax cut, what kind of spending are we cutting? in some cases, that direct spending is a more effective way of creating jobs depending what you are spending on. politicians love to talk about cutting taxes. the light talking about what spending has to be made to accomplish those tax cuts. tax cuts should be part of a
stimulating the economy. the recently negotiated tax cuts by the obama administration with the senate and house republicans will stimulate some growth over the next year or two. i thi it was a very expensive way of getting back growth and generating those jobs. i think there are more eat fish and ways of doing it. -- i think there are more efficient ways of doing it. host: r next call is from detroit which is often called ground zero for the unemployment rate in this country, good morning. caller: 10 people who have been out of the system and have not had jobs be put back to work to rebuild homes or repair homes with the intention to get some
kind of break? guest: i think what you are suggesting is a different route. that is direct government spending on job creation. he talks about spending on houses and that is mostly a private sector activity. there are all kinds of direct spending on in building infrastructure, repairing roads and bridges that are in such bad disrepair in the united states. there are other ways where direct government spending can put people back to work. i personally think we should have done more public service employment in the stimulus bill passed in 2009. dollar for dollar, that is probably a more efficient way of generating jobs. you get larger bank for the block from job creation than tax cuts. host: the tax cuts and a 2% reduction in social security
payment, will lead generate more jobs? guest: it will generate some increase in demand. host: more so than the stimulus to guest:? ? guest: lower to middle-income people tend to spend more out of those tax cuts than higher income people it was not necessarily a bad thing to do. it was expense of the way they did it. there might have been more efficient ways of getting the same job growth hosth. host: good morning, republican law caller: our real problem is we need an industrial policy. our companies have been wise enough to go to china. they can't afford health care. health care and the unions are killing business. it hurts the unions.
they have to have a change in policy. congress are scapegoats. they are scapegoats for the lobbyists. nobody will go against health care. they pay off everybody. when a company brings 10,000 jobs back to the united states, the cost of health care will break them there has to be an industrial policy. we cannot continue with our eyes closed. guest: he raises the cost of health care as something that kills jobs. there is a little bit of truth to that. in many other countries, health care is paid for by the government. private empyers don't have to bear the burden. in this country, the way we have structured health care, it creates some burden but remember, it is a little bit of a false claim because most studies show that in the end, workers are paying for that
health care. health benefits are coming out of work for wages. in that case, they are the ones bearing the cost, not the employer. that is not really a huge contributor of jobs going overseas. the other point about the need for industrial policy depends on what you mean by that. we had this debate back in the 1980's and some economists were concerned about if the government can pick winners and losers. if that is what you're talking about, we have a right to be skeptical. we are talking about a general set of policies on how we can improve our export base and how we can make our manufacturing sector more productive and competitive. that suggestion makes more sense. whinney to pay attention to those issues. host: right now, the system is not set up to be truly fair and the government protects its bodies and punishes its enemies.
fair or unfair? guest: i am not sure i understand fully. host: i think they are talking about the bell out. guest: the issue of bailouts is a complicated issue. as muc as we hated doing it as much is it was terrible to reward the people because this problem, the bail out of the financial sector was necessary to keep the entire economy from collapsing. i think it did that relatively successfully. we were on the cliff of falling into a second great depression. the bail out and the federal reserve policy presented -- prevented that from happening. keeping the automobile companies of blood under a series of conditions and forcing them to become more efficient turned out to be a good policy choice. we cannot do that across the board. we cannot do that on every sector. in the end, it has to pick and choose. politics is part of the way
those choices get made but there are other reasons. host: catonsville, maryland, good morning. caller: we are attacking the branches of this evil and i will call people to what the root is. i will tell people to read "the new world order." the internatnal bankers that have taken over america turned it from a country in 1912 manufactured more than any other country on earth combined into a country now that is not a sovereign nation like china because its foreign policy is beholden to banks. banks are controlled by the rothschilds and the media is controlled by the subsidiaries of these two interests. guest: there are several comments in there that i will not touch prayed i know that the country is controlled by international bankers. there is a lot of good that came
out of our financial system. it helped to spread capital investments more efficiently for our economy and for economies around the world. things did get out of hand and things got sloppy. i think there is a need to generate a new generation of financial regulations which the regulations bill that was passed and signed by the president starts to do. the reason we have lost manufacturing jobs is not because of the financial industry and the banking industry taking over. it is a natural progression wher countries move on to service says. this has always been true. wonder did years ago, we gave up agricultural jobs. and now we are in a different stage of development. we are giving of manufacturing jobs. other places do that more efficiently. we have moved more onto services that we provide more
efficiently. that is always the root of this. a lot of that is good for american consumers and companies. putting the whole thing in terms of conspiracy, i think it is misplaced although the financial instry did make a lot of errors that contributed to the financial bubble that ultimately burst and hurt the economy. i think they should be held more accountable and more responsible in futur
i'm the director of foreign policy studies here. it's my distinct pleasure to open today's proceedings. i want to begin by thanking my colleague, charles ecabe, for his hard work in helping to pull this event together. also to our marketing department to help promote it and to our conference department for what they do behind the scenes to make it run so successfully. i should also thank the construction crews who i'm told are about to stop their rat a tat tat for a little while. of course, thank all of you who are watching online at c-span, who are watching on cato.org. for those of you in the auditorium, i want to ask that you please turn off your phones. silent isn't good enough, because it does interfere with our sound system. to please turn off your phones and silence any other noise-making tnoise-make ing devices you might have out of courtesy to attendees here.
as a courtesy to our attendees, make room here in the auditorium. we have had an overwhelm ing response to this event. we're expecting a completely full crowd and also a number of people will be watching on television set outside of this room and i'm sure they'd like to join us all here in person. so if you have a space next to you, slide every toward the wall or invite someone to sit down next to you. on january 17th, 1961, president dwight david eisenhower delivered one of the most famous speeches of his storied career. the full text of the speech is available in the handout that you all should have received. those of you who are watching online or on c-span can access the speech via the internet. we have a link to the speech. in this address, eisenhower warned the american people of the burdens imposed by a large and seemingly permanent military establishment. something that the nation had
managed to avoid for most of its history. in one of the most frequently quoted lines from that famous speech, he charged his countrymen to be on guard against a military industrial complex acquiring unwarranted influence in the halls of power. eisenhower called on an alert and knowledgeable citizenry to balance the need for effective defense against the nation's peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together. for decades, scholars have suggested ways to restrain the military industrial complex and to limit its effect on civil military relations, the economy and our political system. by any objective measure, efforts to control the expnansin of the military industrial complex have failed. in inflation adjusted terms, americans will spend more than twice as much on national security in 2011 than they did in eisenhower's last year in
office and without a nuclear armed adversary to justify those costs. so today we explore why these spending patterns have persisted for 50 years and what, if anything, can be done to effect meaningful change. ourspeak er today, it's my distinct pl distinct pleasure to welcome her to the cato institute, mrs. eisenhower. her complete bio as with all the other speakers are in the packet that we passed out. i call attention in particular to her long and distinguished career as a commentator on national security policy and also energy policy. she is perceptive and outspoken observer, occasional critic of u.s. policy. it's a pleasure to welcome her back to cato. susan?
>> chris, thank you very much for that nice introduction. what a pleasure it is to be back at the cato institute. we have a wonderful panel here to discuss one of the important aspects of dwight d. eisenhower's farewell address. i have worked in the national security field a long time, myself, so i'm going to be an interested consumer in the panel's deliberations here today, but i think my function really in getting this event started is to say something about the man who gave the speech in the times in which he lived. again, scholars have examined this speech in great detail over the years. certain things about the speech have now become known that weren't before. it's one of those amazing stories about how to be careful with what's in your garage. it turns out that the son of the speechwriter, malcom moose, was
moving the lawn mower to a different part of the garage and discovered five boxes left from his father's life. his wife said it's time to clean it up and get it out and discovered in these five boxes were malcom moose's notes about the crafting of the farewell address. this collection was given to the eisenhower library. many of those documents were just recently released. we know eisenhower had been planning to give this speech for a long time. it was not the afterthought many historians had suspected. it was a very deliberate speech that eisenhower was planning to give. he played a writ call role in the crafting of this. as a matter of fact, malcolm moose later told my father the president was the architect, we were simply the carpenters. and you know, for anybody who knows the way eisenhower wrote, you can hear his phraseology throughout this speech. in any case, it is a reflection of an eight-year career.
to me, i think the fascinating thing is the farewell address is really a bookend to the first major speech he gave of his presidency which was called "a chance for peace." this was given in 1953 just after the death of joseph stollen. in any case these two speeches most important of which we are marking on the 17th of january really underscore the transformational times in which dwight eisenhower served as president. i think one of the reasons we're here today to discuss its relevance is there is a contemporary resonance to this speech because we are, today, also living in transformational times. these transformational times are actually in some ways no that different except that i think it would be fair to say that the united states is not in as strong a position as it was in 1953. after all, in 1953 though money was constrained and the united states was the world's largest
cred creditor nation and we were really the country that emerged from world war ii as preeminent globally, today we have many rapid changes in technology as they did back in the 1950s. the united states, today, is changing its position on the world stage. either voluntarily or involuntarily, but we feel that those changes are under way. again, today we have economic constraints the way we did in the 1950s as i just mentioned, but at a slightly disadvantaged situation. and we have changing views of threat assessments. that's exactly up lly one of ts of these bookend speeches of the eisenhower era. we have a set of changing world values, how eisenhower observes this. as he gives his speech. and frankly, there's also a very radical changing way in which we communicate. back in the 1950s, television
was the new technology. every president from eisenhower onward had to master the usage of this new medium. today, of course, we speak a lot about the internet and of course the blogosphere which has really changed so many things. so to take ourselves back to 1953 for a minute, that was an extraordinary year. it was a game changer many in m ways because of the death of joseph stollen. then in august of 1953, the bomb was tested by the soviet union which broke the u.s. monopoly on this fearsome weapon. it's rather interesting that eisenhower despite these important changes was really willing, able and politically courageous enough to link this defense spending with domestic spending. i would challenge any political leader today to try to draw
equivalences eisenhower did in his chance for speech. he said, quote, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children, the cost of one heavy bomber is this. a modern brick school in more than 30 cities. it is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population. we pay for a single fighter with a half a million bushels of wheat. we pay for a single destroyer with new homes that would have housed more than 8,000 people. this is not a way of life at all in any true sense. under the threat -- under the cloud of threatening war, it is humanity hanging from across. well, if this isn't relevant from a contemporary point of view, i don't know what is, as we have seen extraordinary figures of what the defense security complex, we can call it that today, is spending.
since 2001, these expenditures have risen by 119%, and of course, discussion about how we're going to reign in costs are on our agenda today. let me just close by saying something about transformational times and then an observation about transformational leadership. i believe dwight eisenhower was a transformational leader. this guy had guts. you see reference to it in his farewell address. the original film is "all business all the time." it's spoken in a very somber, very serious way. he did have political courage. we could go into that if the seminar today were on dwight eisenhower, which it is not, but i would point to any number of decisions including the handling of the suez crisis just before
the election of his second term. this was something that was so potentially controversial that he figured that he might even not be elected for taking a decision like that but was prepared. we need to only mention, of course, the imposition of federal troops in little rock in 1957. these were tough decisions by somebody who i believe in his own frame of reference would say that he was putting america first. one of the critical parts of the farewell address is his references to bipartisanship. it is rather amazing with the democratic congress that this republican president manage to get 80% of his legislative agenda through congress and manage despite the rampup during the cold war of military spending, managed to balance the budget three times in eight years which was the cold war record. in any case, we, today, will
mark this speech that raises a number of very important and intriguing issues like the military industrial complex. also i would say the scientific technological elite which is another idea that eisenhower advances. but there are certain parts of this speech that i like because of this changing environment in which he was addressing the public. he was worried about a changing american values. americans by 1961 were newly prosperous. there was a new television culture that was emerging. americans were increasingly bitten by the desire for good life. and eisenhower worried about these values. he linked, in this speech, as he did many times during his presidency, defense spending or defense posture with our economic health and what he
called a third pillar which was he referred to as spiritual. in fact, i think i would interpret that as our moral authority. in any case in his speech, and i just mentioned one wonderful example, he was worried about how america would project itself as it emerged as the global leader. imagine how useful it would have been after 9/11 if we'd had a president say, quote, any failure traceable to arrogance or lack of comprehension or readiness to sacrifice would inflict upon us grievous hurt both home and abroad. that tells us how we should think about who we are in these changing times. as a member of the eisenhower family, it's deeply gratifying that perhaps among his biggest legacies are these two speeches that i mentioned.
the fact that an idea and a set of ideas that he advanced 50 years ago could still serve as a platform for debate today is, indeed, a wonderful thing. i'd like to just say, i knew my grandfather very well. i knew this even as a kid. he was playing for the long game. how many times in his speeches does he mention his grandchildren? and of course, i'm one of them. but we're all one of them. we are the grandchildren of that generation. eisenhower was playing the long game so much that i discovered to my great distress that he put a time capsule in his house in getties bur gettysburg. it's buried in one of the walls and to my distress it's not to be opened until 2056 which means that i'm long gone. doesn't seem fair, does it? this is so eisenhower. to be talking to generations still to come. only in this timeframe it's not 50 years, it will be 100.
thank you. >> thank you. now, let many introduce my first panel today. one short programming note which you probably noticed. professor andrew was forced to withdraw from the program late yesterday because of the bad weather in boston. he sends his regrets. andy has one of the feature essays in this month's "atlantic monthly." i recommend it highly. the good news, bad news is depending on your perspective, andy prepared his remarks and i get to read them. i will not do this service. i'm going to try my best to deliver a few passages from andy's remarks then i will introduce our other speakers today. title of his essay is "who's
army?" the interaction of civilians and soldiers takes place in two distinct and different domains. on the one hand is the relationship between senior military officer s and senior civilian officials. on the other hand is the relationship between the armed forces of the united states and american society as a whole. call this civil military relations for the rest of us, fakie i taking place. a well known principle is set to exercise a governing influence, civil wrol implemented by the congress and executive. the principle of civilian control by no means guarantees effective policy. it however serves against the danger posed by military dictatorship. students of civil military relations see the control as foundational. in the realm, another well known
principle once exercised a governing influence. this was the conviction that national defense qualifies as a collective responsibility, citizenship and military service being inextricably linked to one another. andy continues, truth to tell, in the actual implementation of these principles, americans have always played fast and loose, whether in the elite domain, the reality of civil military relations has seldom conformed to the theory. he goes on later, the vast apparatus of the national security state affirmed and institutionalized the exalted role senior military officers had come to play. in the 1950s and 1960s when presidents ventured into the white house rose garden to make a national security announcements, they took care to have the joint chiefs of staff with ribbons lined up behind them. the message was clear, look, i have consulted the chiefs, they
concur, therefore, my decision deserves to be treated with respect. the officer corps' ultimate responsibility and loyalty to the constitution remained in tact was beyond question. yet the implausibility made all manner of schenn thhenanigans impermissible. -- his innocence remains in tact and he's free to do as he pleases. this describes the way the principle of civilian control actually works in washington. politics is a blood sport. the making of national security policy is nothing if not political with blood and treasure, power and access, ego and ambition on the line. so senior officers learned how to lobby, aly with strange bedfellows, manipulate the nemea
and play off the congress against the white house. that's how you get things done in washington. later andy writes, the ideal civilian control stands in relation to actually existing civil military relations as the ideal of the common good stands in relation to actual existing politics. it represents an aspiration rather than a fact. it will never define reality. responsibility for this unhappy circumstance does not lie with one side or the other but with both. to insist senior officers and senior civilians should find a way to work in harmony recalls rodney king's appeal during the 1992 los angeles riots, can't we all just get along? any such expectation of human behavior in politics lies in the face of the record of history as with the poor, the competition for power will be ever with us. now, when generals overreach, they should have their hand slapped. when ignorant or arrogant
civilians ignore military advisers and thereby commit costly blunders, they should be called to account. inside the beltway, civil military conflict is not a problem to be solved. it is a situation to be managed. elite civil military relations require constant policing. whenever evidence of inappropriate conduct leading to defective policy becomes evident, folks like me rush to write op-peds decrying the latest civil military crisis, in quotes. this is necessary and honorable work, once critics raise the ruckus, the internal self-correction kicks in. it's the same thing when people get up in arms about potholes or lousy service at the bureau of motor vehicles. to quiet complaints and preserve status and prerogatives the people in charge respond. corrective action might tepid tend to be partial or cosmetic. andy concludes, that's the boast
best we can hope for. this periodic awareness of dysfunction in civil military relations distracts attention from the significant problem of dysfunction in the realm of civil military relations for the rest of us. he closes on a note that many of you will be familiar with from his past writings. pertaining to civilian responsibilities as part of the whole. rather than harmonizing military policy with political values, the all-volunteer force seemingly accomplished something much trickier. it reconciled american culture, adversed to the idea of corrective civil -- political elites in washington that exercising global leadership required the availability of large forces ready for instant action. the creation of a new class of
warrior professionals made everyone happy. those residing outside the beltway could live their lives unbothered by the prospect of being summoned before the local draft board. somewhere around 2004 or 2005 americans began awakening to the real implications of having deep sixed the citizen soldier. if americans don't like the way the army is used, they need to reclaim it. this can only happen by resuscitating the tradition of the citizen soldier. i have no expectation this will happen any time soon, he writes. indeed, i judge the likelihood of essentially nil, the entire national security establishment remains wedded to the all-volunteer force and anything that could increase popular influence on policy. worst, our civil culture continues to have a low tolerance for anything that's collective obligation. the only people willing to consider a military obligation tend to be too old to serve. yet on one point i am quite
certain. as long as the tradition of the citizen soldier remains, reversing the militarization will remain a pipe dream. the halls will resound with calls for peace but war is likely to remain a permanent condition. in washington people will wring hands over the unseem bli state of conditions between elites as brass hats and politicians maneuver against the other for advantage. that's their problem. the problem for the rest of us is a far greater one. grasping the implications for our democracy, moral as well as political, of sending the few to engage in endless war while the many stand by, passive, mute and whether they like it or not, deeply complicit. those, again, are the words of andrew, who due to the storm in boston was not able to join us. i hope i did a service in rendering his remarks. the good news for the rest of us is that our other three speakers
managed to get here through the rain, sleet and gloom of night. i'm going to introduce them very briefly. again, their bios are in the package. they're going to speak in the order they're listed here on the sheet. our first speaker today is major general charles dunlap, retired major general in the u.s. air force, distinguished legal scholar. i've gotten to know charlie a little bit over the last few months. we are both members of the warlord loop and enjoy exchanging ideas there. he is a legal scholar. he also is a distinguished strategic thinker and has written about this topic we discussed today. that is the state of civil military relations. the first thing i ever read by charlie many years ago was an article entitled "observations on the military coup of 2012." our second speaker is larry
core. he began with a stint in the u.s. navy on active duty then retire retired after a number of years in the reserve. i've known larry over the years and on a personal note he and i had a chance to travel a bit. he's one of most impressive story tellers i've ever encountered and he'll regale us today in stories. our third speaker, lawrence wilkerson, a retired colonel in the army after a distinguished 31-year career, several of those spent as an assistant to general colin powell as noted in his bio as well as an assistant to ambassador richard hos on the policy planning staff. colonel wilkerson now teaches and has commented extensively on national security policy and again the state of civil military relations. with that, join me in welcoming general dunlap. [ applause ] >> thank you very much, chris.
>> could you speak from the podium, please? >> okay. >> thank you. >> that does go up if you need to adjust that. >> chris, thank you very much for those kind words. i'd like to thank the cato institute for sponsoring this very, very important symposium. and, ma'am, it is an honor to have heard your remarks. can i differ with you on one point? you said the remnant of the speech has -- the entire speech still has contemporary value. i think it's one of these things we ought to make every kid, if we can make any kid do anything, read as they're growing up because it has so much relevance to society today. i know we're going to have another panel later this morning that's really going to focus on the industrial complex portion of the speech, and we're focusing kind of on the military side.
but just as a scene setter, let's remind ourselves of the differences between 1961 and 2011. specifically with respect to the department of defense budget. as you know, or as you may know, in 1961 it consumed almost twice as much as the gross domestic product as it does today. i think it's 9.6% versus 4.7%. my colleague will certainly correct me on this. in addition it consumed 49% of the discretionary budget, and today it consumes a smaller portion. but probably even more important was the relative size of the armed forces. the active duty armed forces in 1961 was about 2.4 million as opposed to 1.4 million. so we have a million less americans serving from a much larger population base. but as professor basovich,
believe me, it's tough to follow him, he's one of the great intellects in the area of civil military relations. as he pointed out, i think the most significant thing is the rise of the all-volunteer force. allow me to differ with my colleague, professor basovich, a little bit here, is that i don't think that the psychology of the typical person in the active duty, full-time active duty military today is really the elite professional. many people in the armed forces, and this is a problem from time to time, do conceive of themselves as citizen soldiers, even those who aren't in the guard. they conceive of themselves as the classic yoman farmer who goes to serve in the military and will eventually leave the military to go on and do something else with their life. and for that reason they have a very strong sense of their rights and privileges as americans. and this shapes the american
military in ways that, perhaps, other armed forces aren't shaped. and i also think that probably one of the most significant influences on civil military relations, particularly as we look forward, is the kind of wars we've been fighting for the last decade. as you know, we've been fighting essentially a counterinsurgency type of conflict. and what our policy has been, what our strategy has been, it's one where supposedly we win hearts and minds by doing principally nonmilitary task. we have grown a whole generation of officers and enlisted personnel in our military who have been told by the department of defense that stability operations, in other words, learning how to run civilian institutions, governments, schools, enterprises, is on a par with combat operations. so in other words, their mindset
is very different. they're not focused on what president eisenhower would have thought is fighting the external threat. this has lots of implications. when you send a young man or young woman to a remote location and you tell them virtually to be the mayor or send a lieutenant colonel to a remote location and tell them to virtually be the governor of that area, they take on that mission with the energy that you would want people in the armed forces to take on. but it leaves them with a different idea of what their role is. now, we ask them to come back to the united states and completely abandon that kind of mindset. and i think that that's going to be very difficult. and just as one canary in the mine, i would invite you to read the article written by a marine lieutenant colonel, published in official u.s. government publication, "joint force
quarterly" this fall, wherein he opines that military officers have the responsibility to disobey lawful orders if it conflicts with their moral view of the world or as a way of offsetting unwise policies. as chris pointed out, almost 20 years ago i did write an article called "the origins of american military coup 2012. "as i go back and read it now, i'm thinking i'm not a very smart person but i'm disturbed by what i read. here's the central issue that we have. what is the appropriate role of the armed forces in policymak g policymaking, understanding that you really can't do anything in the defense area that doesn't, you know, involve policy. and to what extent should the expertise and how should that expertise be expressed? lets me address one of the
things that andy raised. the role of retired generals. as a retired general i have some interest in what this should be. it is kind of ironic, here we have president eisenhower who was a retired general who became rather involved in politics and policymaking. but since that time, since 1961, a number of things have been put in place that really do limit the role of retired generals. especially in relationship with the industrial complex. recently we saw secretary gates implement some rules that will make it very difficult for retired military officers to be mentors to active duty. i think this is quite unfortunate. there was a perception that retired generals are making all this money and it is, i think
i'm well compensated as a retired general. i will tell you, on the day i retired i made less than a brand new lawyer who never practiced a day at a top washington law firm. i, believe me, i'm very happy with the compensation and i'm very grateful because i came into the military with $200. i left with $201. i'm very happy with it. i'm very well compensated. it does give you a perspective. it's a tragedy to me, i think as we talk about what we're facing, we're spending $2 billion a week in afghanistan. we're not buying airplanes and ships and things like that. in fact, another one of the changes is we're really down to about six major defense contractors. i worry that we're not going to have the competition that we once had that made our weaponry the best in the world.
we are who we are, not because of our military, per se, but because of the capitalistic system which provides the kind of creativity and innovation which allowed our troops in the field to have the best equipment and the most modern equipment. i think that that is in jeopardy today. but returning now to the role of retired generals, much has been put in place and there's been much criticism of retired generals getting involved in politics and endorsing. i personally think that's a little unseemly for a retired general to endorse a candidate. it's one thing to run for office. it's another thing to wind up behind the candidate. but on the other hand, i'm not as worried about it as some people are. i think that the american public pretty much knows the difference between an active duty officer and retired officer, because if they didn't, i think we'd be talking about president clark and some other people. and i don't think it has all that much impact on the average
person. even though the polls over and over show the respect that military officers have. at the same time, i would rather have for benefit of a democracy, i would rather have retired generals speaking out in public than meeting behind closed doors, among themselves, and talking quietly to different people in organizations. you know, general jack king, and you know, he did -- he was one of the principle moving forces behind the counterinsurgency strategy, but he did that all behind the scenes. if you read bob woodward's book, general casey, of the army, was not happy about that. we have to reconcile, how can we
exploit the expertise and do it in the right way so that the understandable tensions are accommodated? finally, i would like to make one other observation that concerns me. the nature of today's threats is such that the military is becoming more and more involved in domestic security. i would suggest to you that there aren't very many models where you take the armed forces and use them for internal security, and that's been a good thing for democracy. some of these threats, in particular the sybra threat, we're seeing the attempt to leverage the capabilities to help protect their to midwedome systems. i think we need to be very, very cautious about this and ensure there is oversight, that there are firewalls between the
domestic law enforcement role and the national security role to make sure that we don't have any kind of a -- and the reason i say this is because the armed forces are the most trusted institution in american history. i'm not sure i'm 100% comfortable with that honestly. is it a good thing the armed forces are more trusted than the supreme court? is it a good thing the armed forces is more trusted than the ko congress? is that a good thing? be that as it may, that popularity underpins the success of the all-volunteer force. in other words, people are willing to send their sons and daughters to join an organization which is perceived as so trusted and so respected. if the armed forces becomes involved in domestic security in a way in which it is perceived
that they're invading the privacy and rights of the average american, that could upend the admiration that the a armed forces needs from the general public in order to sustain itself to have the best and brightest continue to volunteer and serve. i do want to get to your questions. i'm going to cut my remarks right there. and i very much look forward to it. and thank you again. [ applause ] >> thank you, chris, very much for inviting me and having this. it's a great privilege to be on the panel with people like andy basovich and even with only with his words and with general dunlap and colonel wilkerson. i've always admired their work. larry speaking out about how the bush administration got us into that mess in iraq. i remember general dunlap writing an op-ped in "the new
york times" about hey, we ought to stop and think whether we want to go whole hog with counterinsurgency. we have other things we need to worry about. in looking at eisenhower's speech, a couple of things are important to keep in mind. you have to remember that president eisenhower in a sense last control of his defense budget after sputnik. what happened was, those of you who were alive at the time, i happened to be, was a sense of panic. you had this committee come in and talk about all this horrible stuff and what the soviets were doing. eisenhower was criticized for being soft on defense if you can imagine that and basically the budget began to go up and it continued under kennedy. i think that was obviously a concern. in his original draft of the speech, he said military
congressional complex. the reason he didn't do that, he was supposed to give the speech in front of congress which did not happen. he gave it before the american public. so in effect that word would have been in there had he known, you know, what the venue is. and i think obviously that's important. he also mentioned, this is relevant to what general dunlap said, he was also concerned about military officers going to work for defense companies. so in other words, a lot of the issues that are still there are, you know, are relevant. you know, if you go back and read the gaither committee, it was followed by groups like team "b," for example, and this year with the defense review came out, they brought a bunch of people in and talked about, you know, we have to spend more on defense and, of course, if you've been following the papers lately, the chinese are coming now. okay, you know, they just got -- you know, it always amazes me. the chinese are building planes. so are we.
chinese are building missiles. so are we. we're going to tell them they can't. every time i see one of these things about what the other side is doing, about how this could be to some intended consequence. reminds me of a story i heard recently when i went to the middle east. it seems this ederly couple who have been marriedy eied many ye. to say the least, the passion had gone out of the romance. they decided to go to the holy land. while they were there, the man passed away. somebody came to the woman and said, look, you can have your husband buried here for $50. she said, how much will it cost to bring it back home? guy said, $5,000. she thought for a couple seconds, said, i want to take him back home. guy said, doesn't make any sense, why are you doing this? she said, you know, i heard y r years ago a fellow was buried here and after three days i rose again and i don't want to take a
chance. all right, well obviously, you know, anything could happen, but i think it -- i think this is what president eisenhower was warning us about. i want to take a little bit of issue with what general dunlap said, because in preparation for my speech today i read this series of articles in the "boston globe" by brian bender. he talked about the fact that 80% to 90% of the retired generals, the last three and four stars are working at defense companies or doing consulting for defense companies, but worse than that, then they get put on boards by the pentagon to evaluate what we should be doing. i do think it is something we need to be concerned about. now, eisenhower also was concerned that other people following him, obviously, would not have the military stature that he had to argue with the generals. and eisenhower used a wonderful term when the military would go behind his back and play games.
he called it legalized insubordinati insubordination. i remember testifying before the senate. i supported clinton's attempt to drop the ban on gays in the military. i accused the generals at that time and the admirals of legalized insubordination. senator mccain got all upset. i said, that was ieisenhower's term, not my term. people didn't realize that. but it's worse than that. i think andy basovich made a, you know, a point. we don't have that many people who go into the service, so it's not just a question of whether you're a general or admiral or done all these things or you're in congress or you're working in a civilian job in the pentagon or in the other agencagencies. if you don't have any military experience you're afraid to challenge them. richard cowen had a wonderful op-ped article in the "washington post" recently and
talked about the fact this is just like a -- people are afraid to challenge it. it's very challenging. look when general petraeus testifies. look at their medals. look at eisenhower, bradley, one or two things. it's very interesting. nobody knows what those medals are. chris mentioned i was on active duty. we used to day say live in '65, alive in '75. you get them all. and get up there and people say, oh my goodness, they were probably at the battle of the bulge these people or something like that. very few of -- i mean, for example, general petraeus doesn't get his combat action badge until he goes into iraq as a two star general. okay? admiral mullen served on a destroyer off the coast of, you know, vietnam. okay? this -- these were not the band of brothers, you know, for example, or anything like that, but people then, you know, they don't want to challenge them.
now, chris mentioned about my stories. i'm going to tell you a couple i think are relevant to what we're talking about. as many of you know, i had the privilege of working in the reagan administration as assistant secretary of defense and trying to deal with a lot of issues that are still with us. you know, military pay and benefits and things like that. so i was talking one day at a meeting. i said, you know, the military retirement system is killing us, going to have to do something about it. and i thinks you know, too many good people are leaving after 20 years and getting half pay. can't we kind of cut that down then give them an insensitive to stay until 30? anyway, we're at this meeting and this admiral said to me, he said, if you do that the volunteer military will end, nobody will join. i said, admiral, give me a break. i said, when i came into the service, you know, 22, you don't think you're going to be 30, let alone 40 or 50. he said, oh, you were in the service?
yeah. what did you do. >> i was a naval flight officer. he said, why didn't you say something? i said, it has nothing to do with what we're talking about here. he says, well, i would have paid attention to some of the bs you've been putting out. okay, i think, see, that's what happens. again, richard cowen made a wonderful point. if you've been in the service, you realize military people are great people. not all of them are. they make mistakes. and again, let me give you another example of, you know, how it's important to be able to challenge them. not only was i in the navy, i taught at the navy college. i made a lot of changes in the navy budget. admiral came down to see me and. you made all these changes in the budget. i said, my job is your budget has to support the president's strategy and it's not. and he said, you know, that's the problem. i said what do you mean? the president has the wrong
strategy. well, no, that is i think important and i think that's what happens. people don't want to stand up against this priesthood now and it is a problem. there's something else and again general dunlap mentioned it. more and more military people are becoming involved in military campaigns because the candidates are looking for them to put the good housekeeping seal of approval on them. and i think we have to be very careful about that. it started when president clinton had a lot of problems, you know, before he ran about his military service and lack thereof and all this, people were concerned and so admiral crowell, former chairman of the joint chiefs of staff endorsed them and i know admiral crowell. and stayed at his house and remember him from my days at the navy war college but then he got the job of ambassador to the court of st. james. i said that's wrong. and then about a week later i ended up in a dinner sitting
next to him, okay, but that i think we have to be careful of and when bush and cheney were there, you know, at the republican convention, it looked like, you know, a meeting of the west point alumni association, with all the people up there endorses him and even president obama, they were looking, in fact, i worked on the pain and people would say do you know any generals we can get to endorse us because they were worried? it's politically cute among the democrats who are worried about being soft on defense. when you go back and look at it it was the democrats who got us into vietnam. eisenhower wouldn't have gone that. at least from what we know. they increase defense, you know, defense spending. clinton actually spent more on defense than former -- the first president bush had projected on -- in other words, they're very, very concerned about that. the other thing that i think is important is how the military
have learned to manipulate the media. in bob woodward's book they talk about the fact they were discussing about whether we ought to add 30,000 more troops to go to afghanistan and according to bob, well, general petraeus was leaking the stuff to "the washington post." now, in my view, that's the worst -- that's sort of a double worst -- first of all, you shouldn't be doing that but, number two, to do it anonymously, okay, to me, that's even -- even worse and then, of course, he gets called out on it and said well i won't do it again. the question is why would he do it in the first place? okay, and again, general petraeus, still very upset about me. i almost fell off my chair in 2004 right before the election. about a month before i opened up the paper and i read this op-ed by general petraeus that says, a, how well the training is going in iraq and, b, how well the war is going and first of
all i thought that is not true. if you read that we would have won the war in 2005 but why is a general writing right before an election? okay, was it his idea? was it the administration's idea and leads me to something else, i think if i ever go back in the government i want to say no admirals on the sunday morning talk shows. that's not your job because you're in a no-win position. you go back and read what jenniers and pace said about iraq, it looked like it was going much better than it was. now, let me conclude with this. i think we can handle a dilemma created as people talked about about the all-volunteer force and some of andy's points by going back to something that i got personally involved in and that was keeping draft registration for the president.
bill, you may have been at the meeting. you know, we had to make that decision because president reagan had campaigned against it because carter had brought it back after the soviets invaded in afghanistan. and my job was to bring this to the president's attention because we had to make a decision if we didn't, it would expire automatically. and in doing that, the point we made, i made, i still believe and the military made it, as well, the all-volunteer force is a peacetime military. and one of the arguments i made to the president was even if you don't -- you know, think that you ought to call up people that's necessary from at least from a military -- if you get into a prolonged conflict you have a moral responsibility because we're telling people if you volunteer and you spend one year in a combat zone you're going to get at least two years at hoe, one to rest and
recuperate and another to get ready to come back. i don't know what persuaded him but he did keep it. where i think the uniform has fallen down here, they should have insisted when we went into iraq, okay, you can be for or against, i happen to be against it but the president wanted it, the congress supported it. they said, okay, you want to go into iraq, activate the selective service system because that would have done two things, one, not only would it have relieved the pressure on the men and women. what we've done is criminal sending them on back-to-back-to-back deployments and it would have got americans to ask a lot more questions. it's them over there. they can go and unless you volunteer it doesn't really impact you. that's what we need to do. we need to ask more questions about why we do this and finish from a quote from richard cohen's op-ed where he said, you know, the thing about war is too
important to, you know, to leave to the generals, it's also too horrible to leave it to them alone. we should be involved. thank you very much. [ applause ] >> okay. i want to thank the cato institute also for having me here today and identify myself with remarks of dr. bacevich who i hope i'll see tonight if he makes it out of boston. i want to come at this -- also i want to say it's good to see susan eisenhower again. i think i saw you at the screening of "why we fight." i use the cross of iron speech and farewell address as part of the backbone of my seminars on national security decision-making. they are so clear about what the tension is between what michael hogan has called in his book a cross of iron, the national
security state which is clearly what we've become and the welfare state which is not a pe score tiff in the sense that we hand out to money for not working. it's the description of a democratic federal republic that takes care of its people with telecommunications and health care and education and good transportation and good energy sources, good jobs and so forth. that's what hogan means by welfare state. that's what eisenhower meant by the american way of life. so this tension between the national security state and the welfare state is with us big time and out of that comes in my experience a unique aspect of this civil military business that i'd like to talk about because i think i bring somewhat unique credentials to this having spent 31 years in the combat arms and also four years in its diplomatic or foreign policy equivalent on the other side, the state department and i
spent them there at the state department at foggy bottom under a man like george schulz before him wanted not only to do foreign policy but wanted to resuscitate the foreign service and those others who work in the trenches in the state department, even including foreign service nationals, those are the people who serve us in our country team, embassies and consulates around the world who come from those countries. so let's look at it from that perspective because it sheds some light and put over here for a moment the other aspect of our foreign policy which is awesome and that's our economic might. and eisenhower certainly understood that too. that's in pretty much disarray right now. none of us know how that's going to come out. not the greatest nobel prize-winning economist in the world knows how we'll right the ship of state with regard to our economic and financial situation. but let's put that aside for a minute and let's talk about the two other instruments of national power that are daily
involved in the pursuit of our foreign policy. that's diplomacy and the military. the unbalance there is so stark that i think if eisenhower were alive today, he'd make a speech about it. it is so stark that as he pointed out in his article in "the atlantic" and was stunned to see that the budget is up to an awesome 48 billion according to andy's article. when i was left it was 28 billion and we had to fight tooth and neal and it was only because of palace bona fides we were able to obtain an additional battalion. that's three-quarters of a trillion for the defense department and about 40 billion for the state department today. it was joked he lost more money in a year than powell got. he was right. check the records. almost any year the defense department can't find through its audit process somewhere
between $20 billion and $40 billion. an incredible imbalance when you understand that money is power. people are also power, resources, 19 bring grades in my army alone, one brigade in the foreign service. our greatest achievement at the state department was to go before our budget committees and appropriators and madeleine can do it. i need $3 billion or $4 billion and i need to hire people. we hired 117 new service officers. they were all consumed in kabul and baghdad. so we're back to zero. you have no educational float. you have people working around the clock all the time. what are some of the other indications of the imbalance there? the military has in-theater assets. i know. i served in them. they have the world divided up into fiefdoms. if you read dana priest's fine
article in "the washington post" about the proconsuls, that's exactly what they are. they are proconsuls. when the four-star navy admiral from st. pak which is my vivid experience, when he goes to japan he is seen by the prime minister because he's trailing in his wake, tactical fighter squad drawns and fighter divisions. when another one goes he's carrying a briefcase and he's lucky if he is lucky to see the head of the american division. that is an imbalance that puts the military out in front of foreign policy, one of the house committee on foreign relations recently had a title committed is our foreign policy military terrorized? you get it is. >> ease of use is also part of the problem that creates this dichotomy or this imbalance of power. why is it easy to use?
it is easy for some of the points pointed out before. it's professional. it's a legionaires. it can go almost anywhere the president wants it to go. the latest attempt to curtail their power was an abdication of the congress to declare war. the congress essentially said, okay, we give up. you can use it but you got to report periodically and every president has although he's protested and, of course, richard nixon vetoed and passed it over his veto. little did he know it was an abdication by the congress, it has certainly proven that way but every president has conformed to its requirements usual by by stealth in the dark of the night delivering the ports to the congress. no president wants to be seen in any way inhibited in the initiation of hostilities. that ought to tell somebody something. it goes on. the state department does not have a domestic constituency.
let's just check what the defense department adds. it has the defense industrial base. it has bases and facilities. it has the reserve component, national guard and reserve and the families of the legions, it has conservatives. it has the american people. it has the congress and it has private security contractors and i could go on and on. what does the state department have? it has no domestic constituency. the state department's constituency is the international public for the american people. but that does not resonate with anybody enough that it could constitute a political or what i would call a domestic constituency that would fight for the state department. we have a tendency since the 1947 national security act and can you look at the presidents from truman on and see how this begins to build and build and build and gets to the point of nixon where nixon is calling the people at the state department
commie pinko dogs. another institutional creation of the 1947 national security act, the security council so you have ambassadors from other countries. you have ministers of foreign affairs from other countries regardless of who they are, china, japan, whatever, they come to the country. they know who to go see. they don't see their counterpart but the desk officer or director director of the nsc in the white house because that's where foreign policy is run. that's a little different with each president but the tendency and trend to consolidate it there is certainly prevalent and as george marshall said when he was advising truman with regard to that 26, july, 1947 signing of the 1947 national security act i fear, mr. president, we've militarized the process. the decision-making process is what he referred to. if you get it in the white house and it isn't transparent enough
that not just the american people were cut out but the rest of the bureaucracy is cut out, and the pre-eminent institute within that instrument, within that bureaucracy is the dod, guess what? guess whose influence will be prepo prepondant? >> i saw this happen. he knew i was the only member of his policy planning taff that had military experience. good pick, i went over and met general casey at the time j-5 on the time and we set him up. we met three times and then donald rumsfeld ordered them stopped. he didn't want the state department interfering with the defense department's business or having anything to do with what the defense department was formulating. we even had a conversation, the military officer and myself and we decided we'd meet in crystal city off the patch, so to speak
then he got selected for brigade command and got fearful whether or not he was caught by the secretary or one of his mignons what he was doing, he would still go to command. i said we understand and we topped the talks so no coordination and defense at the strategic level. the policy planning staff being the only strategic element at the state department. this imbalance is an imbalance of two of the most critical instruments. the one diplomacy should be the leading strumentd. it should be the instrument that's out there all the time. it should be the instrument that is most coveted by your leadership. it should be one that is most exquisite. it should be the instrument that does most of america's heavy lifting along with its economic power. it doesn't. the defense department does. that is the greatest and starkest imbalance of power within the civil military relationship that i know of.
[ applause ] thank you all very much. all right. so we have time for questions and answers. well, definitely question, hopefully answers. we have a very large crowd as you can see. i'd like to entertain as many as possible. we have the jeopardy rule. you must frame your question in the form of a question. no speeches, please, so if you are your question is to a particular panelist please indicate that also. also indicate your name and affiliation. right here. >> my name is jordan. two brief questions on topics not been raised. one is the virtually every survey shows that the political registration of members of the armed forces is more and more republican than it once was close to an even split between
democrats, republicans and independents. so this is my first question i want to raise about how this affects things and also when the draft registration was passed under carter only men were required to register. so i wonder if we face the possibility of going back to the draft, is there any rational reason why young women should not also register, as well? >> good questions, both. >> go ahead, charlie. >> i'd like to take a stab at both. number one, i think there is a statute that is supposed to preclude surveying the military for their political affiliation. i don't have that on the tip of my tongue but i think that's a good thing. we should not be trying to discern the political affiliations of the armed forces. but you raise another interesting question. my colleague and just for the record i only work for duke
university. i'm not a defense contract -- well, god, they probably are a defense contractor somewhere so i probably work for one, but my colleague from unc, dick cone often talks about how officers shouldn't vote and interestingly enough general ordierno and petraeus announced they did not vote. sounds like an apolitical statement, doesn't it? who does -- if people in the armed forces follow that, does that have a partisan effect based on your comment? is that a partisan act by publicly announcing, encouraging people not to vote? and to what extent is it a good thing in a democracy for the armed forces to alienate -- be alienated from the fundamental act of a democracy which is to vote? and i'd ask you to put that in the context of i guess there's a lot of hate about generals in this room, but, you know,
they're not all bad people. i would suggest. but i also think, you know, in a democracy how much do you want them to feel that they are not part of it, that they -- should we fear the silence of the generals? should we have them only in the quiet back rooms? i don't think so. i would rather have them out in the sunshine. i'd rather have them on the talk shows. people are pretty confident to confront generals so i'm not so concerned about the ability of the democracy to deal with it and your second point -- >> draft information for women. >> number one, draft is not going to happen. and will not happy in the country. the military would be profoundly against it simply because it is such a technical force now and having people who don't want to do the things that you need them
to do but i'm absolutely astonished for all of the discussion of don't ask, don't tell and all the pontification of how we need to have equality and access and fairness, no one virtually is talking about the inequality that women suffer today in the armed forces. why on earth should every job not be open to them? now let me tell you i'm not a feminist. i'm not talking about gender norming standards and everything else just -- hey, make the test whatever you want it to be but if you can pass that test you ought to be able to do that so this idea that somehow our military today can't handle h e having women in combat, i would say that they haven't seen what combat is today because we have had women in combat.
they've been wounded and killed. one of my young j.a.g.s was severely wounded after she came and briefed me in iraq. by an ied, so that is something i don't think -- if we ever did have a draft certainly, but i think that we need to address the inequality that women suffer today in the armed forces. it sends all the wrong messages to young people. >> let me comment -- it was a court challenge to that when we put draft registration about women not and the courts basically said that, congress had the power to exclude them. i don't think it would hold up anymore because basically women can -- i mean even though there are certain legal things they can basically do everything. there is a report coming out that congress did set up a group about dropping the final restrictions on women, you know, in combat. i agree with general dunlap, decide what women should do and what the jobs are and just let people compete for them.
those surveys -- if you look where the people come from in the volunteer source, it's not surprising, but interestingly enough in the 2008 election, again i don't know how they do these, there was a change because people were so fed up because of what bush had done to the military a lot of them were changing, but i think admiral mullen gave a speech this week telling you where the people come from and, yeah, they would do lead in lean in that direct. i think we ought to encourage them to vote and there are provisions in terms of absentee ballots and things like that. >> chris, two ink thing, jason dempsey just back from afghanistan, west point faculty, the state of our army, amazon.com, he gives you the stats for his surveys and his analysis and it's pretty balanced. people forget that the officer
corps is one thing, enlisted and nco is something else and they make up the bulk of the army. so it's pretty balanced. on the second point, casey, general casey, chief of staff of the army, is opening serious suggests about women serving in all positions. >> in the back, david aisenberg. >> david aisenberg, and three points. first, the most important line in president eisenhower's speech was always the part about the necessity of an informed and alert citizenry to restrain the influence of the -- how you define it and the citizenry is capable of being knowledgeable due to the myriad of information freely available to everybody out there who is interested in looking. they don't seem particularly alert. they seem to have largely bought into the idea that the military is the most trusted institution
and therefore they know what they're doing and we should just trust them to continue doing what they're doing and it's basically good which i think is radically wrong. how do the panelists think that could be changed if at all and secondly, what do you think president eisenhower would think of the rise of the private military and security treaty contracting we've seen in recent years. >> two very different questions. who wants to take it? either one. >> well, i think, david, on the private contractors, you would have been appalled. remember, that basically started when we went to the volunteer military because we started contracting out kp as they used to call it back then and of course we went over the line. if you look at the first gulf war one out of ten people in theater was a contractor and iraq and afghanistan is about 50/50. i would argue one of the reasons it is is because they didn't
activate the selective service people to call people up and have more active military people so that's why they relied on it. >> private contractors very simply stated allow the president of the united states to get around constitutional mandated in strength limitations on the armed forces, they allow them to go to war. >> yeah, on the first one, i think that the military is the most trusted institution because quite honestly and i'm not talking about people like myself, when you see thus young kids they really are our best and brightest and it saddens me in a way that so much of our talent has to be bled off into the military because if you think about president eisenhower's speech about every dollar spent is a theft, so forth and we can talk about intellectual capital, as well. getting back to your central issue i for one very much
believe that a civilian who has never served can educate him or herself to the point where they can confront, if you will, the military on more or less an equal plain and we're talking about on the strategic level and defense policy level. you're not going to get down to the point where you know as much as a corporal about how to drive a tank but you don't need to. that's not the big policy issue. you can and you educate yourself. part is self-education but seeing more and more universities and i would like to see it even greater have national security study, not just for people going into the foreign service and i'd be happy to comment about the foreign service if anybody asks a que question, but who will be citizens and business leaders and so forth. and not to plug duke but duke
and the law school, that's why we have a center there and you see when they first started years ago, you wouldn't see that at all. now there's i think 160 universities that have some sort of national security studies. it's a hot topic and it is possible and necessary for a democracy to educate itself. >> down here. >> i'm christine with p. sax in montgomery. i want to thank you, mr. wilkerson, for your interesting analysis. i read that there are more people in army bands than there are diplomats. and but my question for you is you talk about the lack of a constituency for the state department and the lack of a constituency for diplomacy. how can we change that?
how would you see -- i thought your analysis was very profound and i don't know how we go about making that change. >> a good question, one we deal with in seminar because i ask my students how would you change it and i've had interesting responses to that. including i'm going to help change that and they go and -- i'd say probably a third of my students will take the foreign service exam. they will probably -- about 50% of that will go on to the oral exams and maybe 50% of that will get into the foreign service. others are going into other instrumentalities of the government not the least of which is the peace corps which doesn't get much want anymore but i get the most interesting e-mails from my students who have gone into the peace corps, el salvador, mexico, incredible eye-openers for them and come back and hopefully be
policymakers so one way is through education, a long-term solution but through education. another way is to recognize, i think, this division of power, that imbalance of power. secretary clinton and gates have made headway in recognizing it and trying to do something bit but now the physical situation of this country is such that no one is going to give up a single dollar because they know they'll give up billions across the board as this physical situation gets worse and worse, which it's going to. so i'm into the sure how you do it in a fast way, given the physical situation that we have today and the fact there's not enough money to go around for everybody. the long-term solution, i think, for the american people and for those who will go into policymaking positions is education. it's opening their eyes to the fact that diplomacy is still an instrumentality that ought to be interestingly, if you studied the demise of empire and
history, you will see that one of the things that becomes atrophied as the power becomes more arrogant and more dependent on its force as its principal instrument, you get this frittering away of that power on the fringes of power, think afghanistan and iraq today for example and then you get a -- if you're smart like the british were, you get this reaction that says, wow. we do need a civil service and a foreign service that can do things for us because our power is no longer that way can do everything. and so you get a resurgence of the diplomatic instrument. i'm hoping that that will be an attribute of what's happening in the world today, that is the defusion of power, not just our power that is being diminished but others coming up in terms of our relative power, so it's a mess if you want my real appreciation of it but it has
ways it can be ameliorated and one ways i'm work on myself is education. >> let me give you a more specific 30 seconds. you need a unified national security budget age look at all the instruments together and goes up as one then the president can make the trade-off as head of time, missile defense or diplomats or whatever it might do and that will do it quickly. now, congress may or may not go along with it completely but if you send it up there you at least started the battle and gates talked a good game and said we ought to spend more on diplomacy. well, where are you going to get it from? the sky so that's what you need to do. >> and you also need to go after the congress because my party, i'm a republican. my party in some of its more right wing members takes great pride in not even owning a passport or never set foot out of the united states and doesn't want to. takes great pride in the fact it
doesn't speak any language but english. you've got to change that mind-set too. >> if i -- i've often heard that thing about the bands and foreign service and i assumed it was just a flippant remark and wasn't serious because my flip apartment remark serious back would be when they become effective at representing the united states as our military bands do maybe we'll increase the size of the foreign service. but let me say this, nobody in the military would prefer to take the lead in foreign appears. we all would rather have things resolved through diplomacy but i think it's a mistake and i do agree, we need to have a larger diplomatic core and it needs to be opened up to more than graduates of georgetown and princeton, i might add and duke, yeah, seriously, more than just the graduates of the elite
universities. but we have to understand that what gives our diplomats leverage is our military power. so the idea that we could be militarily insignificant particularly in a particular theater, for example, and have the same kind of leverage that we would hope to have i think is not very realistic. there's interconnection. >> right there and then i'll come down here. right there. >> paul sloan, retired military served both in the draft era and the volunteer. is it a possibility that the military of the all volunteer today with the civilian contractors equaling as much as they are could morph into truly a mercenary army? s>> well, that's why i think if you go to war, we kept draft registration and that's one way
to prevent it. if you just say, you know, forever we'll never draft again i think you do, you know, run that -- run that risk. particularly with your private contractors because you have virtually no control, you know and we've seen all of the stories. even the military doesn't like the private contractors i mean because if you go back and you look at what happened in fallujah where the marines had to go and fight when they really were not ready for that particular engagement. >> let's distinguish between security contractors and the vast, vast majority of contractors which are not performing security duties, the vast majority of contractors are leaning latrine, serving food, doing logistics and things like that. i totally agree that when you have contractors guarding the u.s. embassy, i remember going into the green zone.
it just shocked me that we had contractors guarding that compound. in the interperimeter. that shouldn't be. i don't think that they'll -- and a lot of them, most of them are not americans. most of the contractors we hire get subcontractors from all over the world so i don't think this is a good thing but do the american people want to pay the incremental cost to hiree ssentially security guards? what we're paying for now, what we're buy something a highly trained sophisticated infantryman that the decision has been made it's better to use that sophisticated infantryman in other tasks other than standing the important much simpler task of guarding point defense. but the rise of military contractors is troubling especially since more and more are being employed by nongovernmental organization and media and so forth so even if we
got out of the business of security contractors, i think that there would still be a market for them. >> down here. >> boday aberdeen. i have a question for the three panelists about the imbalance of power within the defense establishment which we heard about, the imbalance of power between state and defense but is there any balance of power in the pentagon between the civilian leadership and the military leadership? >> okay. good question. >> in terms of what is the proper balance. >> is there? is there an imbalance? >> well, i think it changes depending upon the personalities. i think you can -- you have secretaries of defense who are not afraid to confront the military. you have some people who don't want to confront the military.
i do worry, you know, in terms of somebody, you know -- i mean in secretary gates was in the service and he's also, you know, an ncia. he dot not seem to be afraid to confront the military. you may disagree with him but he's not afraid to confront them. it's important and doesn't necessarily have to be military service but understand the background. i see it even now, you got people there -- they want to be popular with the military and don't want to take them -- you know, take them on. and, you know, for example, we all talk about military health care and the cost for retirees. if you don't take that on -- they finally made a little bit of change this year but we haven't changed it since 1995, okay. and nobody wants to take that on because you don't want to be seen as unpopular.
people forget and bill would remember when stockman was in there, we froze military pay one year, no raise like civilians. would you try that today? let me tell you nobody would do because the men and women and all this. if you look at the military pay it's higher than it's supposed to be right now because you have an index and it's been going over it all year but, again, i think, you know, that is very, very difficult than -- i do worry about that, you know. i used to tell people working for me, if you leave here after a couple you have years and the military loves you, you haven't done your job, okay, because you've got to take the bomb. >> so quick question to all three of you. will congress pass an increase in the co-pays and fees for care? for the first time in its history every time it's been floated up congress has shot it down. >> i'm afraid so, but it's wrong. it's wrong because we're in the middle of two wars and you're
going to balance the budget on the back of 19-year-olds and 20-year-olds and 25-year-olds? if you want to cut charlie dunlap -- if you want to increase my co-pay and co-pay of every general officer, if that is somehow going to solve the budgetary problem, have at it. but don't do it on the backs of -- >> so that's the distinction, charlie. it's between active duty personnel and retirees because otherwise they don't affect the rates much the retirees either. >> i can tell you in the great keep of themes this is not a lot of money. let's start with entitlements to people who have never served. >> there is a -- >> because if -- if -- yeah, if -- if we are -- if we have to -- if we have to make a decision, i think we can do both. i don't think it is -- we may have to increase taxes or whatever, i think we can do both but we should not try to balance the budget on the backs of that
small portion of this country that served -- is either serving or has served in uniform. chiefs, we ought to look someplace else than to take away the health care for them and their family or make it more expensive or more difficult to obtain. we're the united states of america. we don't do that to people we have set in harm's way and so many have come back very different than how we sent them. >> we don't. we've done it since the revolutionary war and i will tell you something going on right now i'm following very closely as are many of my retired colleagues. if you belong to a military associations, used to be retired association, they're the lobby group for retired people, you guys know about them, i'm sure. there is actually very sophisticated orchestrated i think from the pentagon who's oshth straighting, i can't say
campaign going on to divide the veteran committee and steal from the old veterans to give to the new veterans and the rhetoric accompanying it is being put out by varous and sundry congressmen who come down on either side of the fight but that's very dangerous in my view. you divide and conquer in this way and of course the most acute ve veterans group is the ones who have the athengs are those veterans from afghanistan and iraq particularly because some of them have some really horrendous wounds due to the fact that we can now save pretty much almost anybody on the battlefield so this is a dangerous thing to be doing to start the fight within the community as to who should be the bill payer? i agree the sums are so small this shouldn't be necessary but it is necessarily apparently because it i . 1995 on so number two we've
increased the benefit, okay, if terms of you didn't have dry care for life in until 1999 so this idea that you can't touch them is nonsense. and nobody is saying you're going to balance the budget on the -- with the defense budget but it has to be part of it, okay? and the fact of the matter is, you get -- you have the same thing with police and firemen. well, how much can you, you know, pray somebody to put their life on the line? look, i'm going to give away -- when i went into the navy i got 220 a month. why did i go in? because my father said you deserve to serve your country. we didn't go in for money and say how dare -- i took a cut from being a new york city high school to go in, okay and we never said, oh, you owe us this,
no. we love this country. we owe them -- owe the country so you can't -- mullen says health costs are eating us alive. what are you going to do about it? and that's the key thing. if you were paying right now, admiral allen when he retired, head of the coast guard says i pay $19 a month, okay, for, you know, coverage? you have military people what retired have a health care plan. they don't take it because they stay on their own. that was never intended. nobody to talking about wounded veterans and the bill that gates proposed is for retirees under 65, okay? that's what he's talking aboutle now, you ask me how to do it i'd means test it and we've made changes, for example, it used to be if you served, you know, you could only get 75% of your pay regardless of how long you save. now it's 100%, we changed that. that wasn't part of the
agreement. who came in after 1986 said you'll get 46% then 50 perhaps we changed it before the war stated. you can do it. you've got to take it on because if you don't, you're not going to be able to buy some things that you may like to defend -- to defend the country but this argument -- nobody is trying to bat the budget on the backs of people but has to be part of overall. don't give me this, we're helping people who haven'tered it. you haven't earned it? you paid your social security. we use the social service surplus to go to war. that's what we did. we took that surplus, we didn't raise taxes on people. that's the big mistake. this is the first wars we have's ever gone into which we haven't raised taxes so who do we expect? this again and i'm not demeaning it. i know what it is, okay. i went and the reason i went is because my family told me, i
could have had deferments ras a teacher and all that. that's what killed the draft. we got all these politicians the last two vice presidents and the president they didn't serve, okay? that's what killed it and we let them get away with it. so this idea that somehow, you know, and i among to -- you should see the stuff they write about me. i love it when i get my thing every month with all these horrible things that these people write about, this type of thing, no, okay, so i think, you know, in terms of pay, we have a standard. employment cost index. we're way over it. that's the standard. that's the law and nobody ever said when you come into the -- you know what you promise military people when you came in, read the contract. you will be entitled to health care at a base on an availableability basis. that's what you're promised. there was no tri care. >> we got the one thing that could get the panel ifs to
disagree and get larry fired up. >> if we talk about means testing why limit it to only those who served in the armed forces. i'm not into it but if we're getting into means testing and go down that route. that takes us in a whole different direction and we immediate a new panel. >> two more questions, 10:40. go. right there. >> alex dirk with national legislation. i wanted to go back to the idea of the unified national security budget. we've heard secretary clinton and others argue that could increase the state department's stature as the budget goes through the congressional appropriations process but do you think it's also possible given the imbalance of power that already exists that could actually exacerbate the balance of power between dod and state?
thank you. >> go ahead. >> in brian stek, captain u.s. army national guard. my question is back to the all-volunteer versus draft. it seems me the reality of it regardless of the political imbalance is a socioeconomic imbalance. you do not have members of all walks of society continuing to serve in the united states military. as a result, the policies that are being put out by the politicians are now being carried on the backs of 1% and mainly a. >> reporter: affected by it. isn't, in fact, the question is, is that really good for democracy for the fact that everything that we're doing everything, everything that we're imposing is in fact not in any way shape or form whether through taxes or mutually service good for the democracy. >> you brought up the unified security budget. are you putting the kitten in the cage with the lion? okay. so that's number one because you
raised that, as well, colonel wilkerson and unified security budget? >> well, basically what you would decide can how much you want to spend on defense, diplomacy, development, okay? the decision based upon, all right, then you would be able to make trade-offs and you'd have to say do i want to buy another submarine this year or do i want to spend more -- we're not just hiring foreign service people but talking about development. you know, development of foreign aid an you would make that trade-off so that basically you could say, well, for this dollar in foreign aid i can deal with what the military says is a big claimant change. i can deal with that or deal with the scarcity or something like that. then when you send it up, yes, congress can change it but you've already made those changes and congress accepts about 90% of what you do and
what i want is get the executive branch to sit back, the president and his team and look after you make that decision and, bart, the other question, basically that's why volunteer military is a peace-time military. go back and read it, 1981 the military wrote that to president reagan. it's ray peacetime because then in war you would get, you know, to deal with the problem you want. >> senator? >> i think it's a reality -- it's a reality, and we're going to have it. we have to make military service attractive enough so that the best and brightest will continue to solve to do the things that need to be done. in terms of putting the lion with the cage that is always going to be a problem because of this factor. at the end of the day we can have battalion after battalion after battalion of diplomats but they're not going to be hunting al qaeda in the hindu kush so there's things the military has to do which requires a much bigger infrastructure so i do think there will be imbalance
but i do think it's a good idea. i support the idea but -- >> last word. you do have the problem for some of the reasons i pointed out and others that you may be letting the fox into the henhouse, but i think if you reorganize the congressional committee structure to provide better oversight of the process you would be a long way down the road to trying to stop the head or prevent that. you'd need probably a joint national security committee sat on by both members of the house who have the power by the constitution of the purse and by members of the senate who by historical precedence or a little more shall we say sagacious when it comes to long-term thought but a joint oversight committee and eliminate all the committees that have their own fief domenici fiefdoms could go a long way in preventing that. >> thank our panelists. we'll take a quick break. [ applause ]
>> welcome to the national press club. i'm a reporter for bloomberg news and president of the nation national press club. we are the leading professional organization for journalism and committed through our programming and fostering a free press. for more information about the national press club visit us at www.press.org. on behalf of our members i would like to welcome our speaker and attendees. i would like to welcome our
c-span and public radio audiences. after the speech concludes i will ask as many audience questions as time permits. first i would like to introduce our head table guests. from your right, executive strategy advisor for human iity first. a reporter for investment news and new member of the national press club. international news manager for world vision. president and c.e.o. of interaction and guest of the speaker. senior vice president of international services for the american red cross and guest of the speaker. the speaker's committee chair and organizer of the event. over the speaker for a moment. our chief public affairs officer for the american red cross. next rachael ray.
edward donohue reporter for the associated press. april ryan white house correspondent and washington bureau chief for the american urban radio network. finally, a freelance journalist. today is the one-year anniversary of the earthquake that devastated haiti leaving more than one million people homeless. many haitian families still need food, shelter and sanitation. survivors are living in tent camps marked by reports of violence. debris clogs the capital of port-au-prince. haiti's conditions have sparked calls for tougher accountability of how funds are spent. today's guest has been central
to the situation. she has the largest disaster relief organization one that raised nearly a half billion dollars for haiti assistance. last week the red cross announced it has spent or signed agreements to spend $245 million on haiti recovery efforts. more than half of what it has collected. haiti is a test for the american red cross. when she took the job in 2008, mcgovern was the seventh c.e.o. in seven years hired to restore the red cross's tarnished reputation. twice named among the most powerful women in corporate america she slashed expenses to cut the debt working to regain the trust of donors who were wary of reports of plans to divert 9/11 funds to other purposes and disorganized response to hurricane katrina. then, on january 12, 2010, which
is her birthday, the deadly haiti earthquake struck. the day after the earthquake she was diagnosed with breast cancer. as she began fighting the two battles she launched the campaign to provide assistance to haiti. she is here to describe how the red cross is spending what it raised for haiti, update what it accomplished and lay out the challenges ahead. please welcome to the national press club american red cross president and c.e.o. gail mcgovern. [applause] >> thank you very much. i'm really pleased to being back at the national press club. it is quite an honor. i'm grateful for the opportunity to be able to report out to you and also to the public about our operations in haiti on this one-year anniversary.
i plan to talk about how the american red cross is putting your donated dollars to work and i will also talk about some of the challenges we are dealing with and how we plan to move forward to help haiti and its people recover. first i want to point out that even though haiti is by far the largest operation we have worked on in 2010, it certainly isn't the only disaster we have responded to and it isn't the only thing we have been focused on this year. the fact is that one in five people in the united states have been touched by the american red krcros cross. it is actually unusual for me to meet anyone that knows everything that we do. we respond to 70,000 disasters every single year and we do this as volunteers who wear pagers 24-7. this past year we dealt with
major disasters in the u.s. as well like the floods it tennessee or the tornadoes that hit the south and midwest, or the wildfires in colorado. we are also there to respond to tens of thousands of single family house fires that happen each year and probably don't even make the evening news. these seemingly "small disasters" may seem small, but if your family is impacted they are epic proportions and we are there to provide shelter, to provide food, we are there to provide comfort and hope. in addition to disaster response, we provide nearly half of the nation's blood supply. and every single one of those 10 million units were donated by a generous and selfless person who really wanted to save lives. we also work with members of the
military, veterans and families by providing support and 500,000 emergency communications every single year. that could range from delivering the news of a tragedy at home or to the video connection for a soldier who is deployed so he could teach his teenage son how to shave for the very first time. we also teach live-saving skills to about 10 million people every year. it is unusual for a month or two to go by when we are not honoring somebody who is an ordinary person who has done an extraordinary act. recently we honored a 17-year-old young man who saved his 3-year-old brother from choke being because of his red cross training. the depth and breadth of all we do continues to amaze even me and it truly is a privilege to be part of it.
18 months ago i spoke about the challenges of navigating a nonprofit through turbulent economic waters. at that time i talked about how the red cross was trying to eliminate a $209 million operating deficit over a two-year period. i'll very pleased to let you know that after a of cost cutting, consolidation and streamlining that we closed our fiscal year this past june and we did so with a modest surplus. none of these cost cutting initiatives impacted our ability to fulfill our mission and we are continually seeking ways to be efficient in order to be outstanding stewards of our donors' dollars. now for haiti. as we all know, a year ago today haiti was struck by a devastating earthquake 7.0 magnitude that killed an estimated 230,000 people and
left an additional 1.3 million people homeless. it flattened homes, destroyed much of the capital city, damaged government operations including the deaths of many civil servants. matt merrick a 36-year-old from wilkes-barre pennsylvania was head of the operations there when the earthquake struck. he and his co-workers dove under their desks when the earthquake started, and when it was over they saw light. they realized that the walls of their building had collapsed around them. matt crawled out from the wreckage and he looked across the hillside to see thousands of holes that were pancaked and he knew in an instant that many died. they spent all night bandaging
and cleaning wounds. they sent out teams to provide first aid to people that were in hard-to-reach locations and they didn't have stretchers so they dug through the rubble to find doors to carry the injured to vehicles to get them to one of the few remaining operating hospitals. my first trip to haiti was just a few days after the earthquake. the deceased were not buried and they were still in the streets. i saw people walking around the streets of port-au-prince with nothing more than just a shock and grief on their faces. the extent of the devastation, the number of injuries and smell of death were just indescribable. no someone smiled, no one laughed. no one spoke. no one even cried. people were living in makeshift tents they made from pieces of
sheet under little sticks. and if you wanted to talk to the residents in the camps, you literally had to crawl around on your hands and feet to be able to see them. these images are still very, very vivid to me today, and i suspect they will be for years to come. the experience fundamental ly changed my life. a felt the combination of heartbreak but steely determination to do whatever we possibly could to help the people of haiti recover no matter what. i have pictures of children i took during the first trip and i have them on my refrigerator and look at them every day. they help remind me of our mission and why we need to be sure that every single dollar we spend is spent wisely. what also strengthens my resolve is the incredible outpouring of generosity from the american
public. the tremendous needs of the haitian people brought out the tremendous heart in the people of our country. so so many americans reached into their hearts and wallets and even reached for their cell phones to be able to give. they did so in such tough economic times. i want each and every one of them to know that we are truly grateful for those donations and they are making a difference for the people of haiti. overall the american red cross has raised $479 million for earthquake relief and recovery efforts. these came in from millions of donors in various ways and sizes. like the million dollar gift from a fortune 500 company, the $400 that was raised by a fourth grade class in massachusetts, or the crumble d up dollar bill tht came with a note that said this is from the tooth fairy.
can you give it to the people of haiti. more than $32 million came from text messaging at just $10 a pop. this is truly a game changer in the world of fund-raising. i like to think it introduced a whole new generation to this delicious feeling of giving back probably for the very first time. but with this outpouring of support comes responsibility for accountability and transparency, and this new generation of donors wants to know how the red cross is spending their money. i learned that firsthand when i did a skype interview with that fourth grade class i talked about that raised $400. i expected the conversation to be pretty simplistic. these were 9-year-old kids. but i knew we had entered into a new era of transparency when
these kids asked me some really tough questions about exactly how their $400 was going to be spent. i provided them with a lot of details and as i told the class, the red cross is committed to wisely spending the money that our donors have entrusted to us. and whenever i make decisions i try to imagine that our donors are sitting right with me and i ask would they be happy with the way we are spending the money, would they approve, and will it help the people of haiti. personally, i welcome the new level of traeurbt seu -- transparency and i'm proud to share decisions with donors. i often ask whether we are spending the donors' dollars fast enough in haiti. three months after the earthquake we told the press and donors we estimated we would spend or will have contracts to spend $200 million in the first year following the earthquake.
the fact is to date we have provided more relief than we originally projected. i'm proud to report the american red cross has contracts to spend or have spent $245 million the first 12 months. and that is more than half of the $479 million that we collected. and if you do quick math it is a spending rate of about two-thirds of a million dollars every day. that rate is possible because of our large disaster response capacity, and we can swiftly identify partners in haiti who can also deliver massive amounts of assistance to complement our capabilities. for the next few minutes i will describe the emergency relief we provided in the first year since the earthquake. these are the kinds of services and activities that are urgently needed after a disaster. and in haiti they have literally
kept people alive. that is a point worth reemphasizing. while conditions in haiti are still extremely difficult, these relief efforts, made possible by your donations, have saved lives that otherwise would have been lost. after i describe the relief efforts i will talk about the challenges we faced, the need to be flexible, and i will also talk about the plans going forward. i will be using some of thes and figures that can be found in our one-year haiti report on our website. r redcross.org. i will talk about twhat the american red cross has done but also as a network with the other red cross societies around the world. we have categories of food, water and sanitation, emergency shelters, lively hds, health
services and disaster preparedness. i will give you a few details of each and i will start with food. after the earthquake the american red cross provided the world food program, which is part of the u.n., with $30 million funding and additional $14 million of ready-to-eat meals, which was enough to feed one million during the height of the earthquake response. this assistance was vital in a country where even prior to the earthquake 1.9 million people either went to bed hungry or were completely reliant on aid for success 10 instance. in early spring the haitian government asked aid organizations to stop distributing food. they felt it would rarely the local economy particularly local farmers. they were redirected for school meals, food for work programs and nutritional supplements for
children under five or pregnant women or nursing women. since the earthquake the global red cross network has been providing clean water to hundreds of thousands of people in port-au-prince each day. we have funded latrines to serve 265,000 people in camps. and it is important to note that before the earthquake only one in they people had access to clean potable drinking water, and less than 20% had access to latrines or toilets. the american red cross is also working to improve drainage in and around the camps. just imagine living in a home where every time there's a heavy rain you can't lie down and your children can't lie down and you have to stay up. these drainage projects keep
residents drier and put people to work. >> the third area is emergency shelters. more than one-third of the tarps and tents that were provided to the people in the tented communities came from the red cross. to put that in perspective, if you lay those tarps and tents end to end, they will go all the way from new york city to miami. of course, we are working to get people out of the tents as quickly as possible, but at least these shelters have provided earthquake survivors from protection from the blazing sun and the punishing rains. fourth, the american red cross has opinion working hard to help the haitian people get on their feet through jump starting lively hoods. we have been working with a partner in haiti and helped about many people with cash
grants. many of them were led by women and that is a particularly vulnerable group economically as you know. also, because hundreds of thousands of displaced haitians left the capital to seek refuge with friends and family in other regions, we are providing support to about 70,000 living with host families. these grants and loans made a real difference for haitians like the owner of a small food sh shop, odette minard. she lost most of her inventory in the earthquake and thanks to money from the aids she reopened the shop and once again she can provide support for her female. there are signs that more and more haitians are getting back on their feet. the u.n. tracks the population in the camps and they have determined that the number of residents has declined by more
than half a million people since the earthquake. the fifth area includes self different -- several different initiatives in the area of health. the american red cross helped fund a vaccination program. we vaccinated close to a million men, women and children against diphtheria, purr us it cyst, tetanus measles and rubella. nearly 217,000 have been treated since the earthquake. we have provided funds to keep the doors owe of the largest public hospital in port-au-prince as well as the only critical care and trauma center in all of haiti. the earthquake left thousands of haitian survivors with crushed limbs. the american red cross is helping fund the reconstruction of prosthetics and rehabilitation facilities run by the healing hands for haiti.
you can just imagine the joy a child would experience with an artificial limb that brings they will back to normalcy, whether being able to walk or kick a soccer ball again. our final set of projects in the emergency response phase is in the area of disaster preparedness for haiti. haiti is obviously a disaster prone country and in order to be ready for the rainy season and hurricane season we are working to build a culture of preparedness. the red cross prepositioned enough emergency supplies for 125,000 people and they are scattered around haiti. haitian volunteers trained by the red cross have gone into the camps to provide residents with basic disaster preparedness and response tools. they have worked with community residents to put sand bags on hi hillsides and create evacuation
routs. including setting up emergency communications. these efforts were reinforced by the innovative use of text messaging and broadcast immediate. for example, when hurricane tomas was approaching haiti in the fall, we worked with a wireless provider in haiti and sent millions of text messages throughout the country telling people the steps to prepare for the storm. these preparations have kept the loss of life to a minimum when tomas struck in november. so, hopefully that gives you a sense of our relief activities. as i said, more details are available on our website. it is very important to have a plan during disaster response but it is very important to be flexible. the cholera outbreak is an example of a new and unexpected
crisis that we had to respond to. as soon as the cholera outbreak started the red cross sprang into action. within days of the outbreak cargo planes filled with relief supplies that were paid for by the american red cross were landing in port-au-prince. the red cross network opened three cholera treatment centers and were providing funds to other centers. we were providing safe chlorinated water to more than 300,000 people in port-au-prince every day. the red cross donate d 10 millin tablets that purify water. we donated them to the haitian water authority. text messages has been part of the cholera response as well. the red cross response team has sent 3.7 million text messages with prevention techniques and
information across the country. we've also purchased and transported hundreds of thousands of prevention and treatment items like soap, oral hydration, tablets and i.v. solutions. we have shipped thousands of kotts from our cots and hundreds of american red cross trained hygiene promoters are going tent to tent in the camps of port-au-prince to explain how to stop the spread of cholera. this is really not an easy feat because this is a country where the i will literacy rate is so high you can't just drop a brochure and ask them to read. i followed a group of the volunteers and they used ingenious techniques from having a story board with illustrations
to demonstrating how you wash your hands with cholera soap and they would teach the kids the cholera song which has catchy tune and lyrics are all about how to prevent the spread of cholera. a second example is part of the relief work and this unfortunately is going to have to go into the column of challenges that we faced and it shows the need to adapt to new development and new directions. i'm speaking about the cash transfer program which you may recall from the previous report. we had successfully piloted a program where we were going to distribute $40 million to help people living in the camps. our feeling was that this would empower them to provide for their own needs rather than waiting in line for aid
distribution. however, the government of haiti asked us to stand down on this program in late october. the rationale was that the provision of cash would have more people moving into the tentededed communities -- tented communities. we were disappointed. i understand the point of view. since that time the american red cross has been working to reallocate that money into financial assistance initiatives that would be more targeted. they would include cash for work, relocation grants, school vouchers to offset tuition payments for k through 12 students. almost every student has to pay a fee to go to school in haiti because 90% of the system is private schools. our goal remains to get cash into the hands of families which will not only improve their lives but stimulate the haitian
economy. another challenge that all of you have read about is finding land to get people out of the camps and into transitional hom homes. this effort has not moved as quickly as any of us would have hoped for, for a number of reasons. first, it has been very difficult for the haitian government to determine exactly who owns the land. obviously, groups like the american red cross can't just charge in, steal land and start building. it is not our land and it is not our country. much of the available land is covered with tons of rubble that has to be removed and there isn't enough heavy equipment to do so. even if there were, the roads are so narrow that heavy equipment wouldn't have access to remove the rubble. despite the challenges the american red cross is moving ahead to provide more permanent shelters for haitians that are currently living under tarps and
tents. we are spending $48 million as part of the red cross network's overall goal to build transitional homes for 150,000 people. our partners have already completed a number of these homes in 16 different communities. the homes they have completed will be able to house 15,000 people. these are brightly colored homes, a vivid sign of progress and sign of hope. i like the fact that in many instances they are being built by the haitians that live right in the community as part of the cash for work program funded by the american red cross. so, looking ahead, the red cross plans to spend the remainder of the funds on long ir-term recovery and we plan to be in haiti until the last dollar is spent. our hope is to leave a lasting impact. the bulk of the remaining funds will be spent on permanent
housing. we plan to provide permanent homes with two approaches. one is rehabilitate existing communities inside port-au-prince. homes there have been marked with green if they are able to be habitable. they are yellow if they need repa repair, and red if they have to be demolished. it with include repairing holes that are damaged and demolishing and replacing those that are unsound. this is a street-by-street approach and allows people to return to their neighborhoods and stay close to family, friends and jobs. the second approach is a greenfield effort where we develop new communities outside of port-au-prince and we are very excited to be able to tell you about two brand-new initiatives. first, the american red cross is working closely with the united states government, state department, through the implementing arm, usaid.
we are working on planned partnership to build permanent housing for people left homeless during the earthquake. under this usaid would identify and prepare at least two locations in haiti for permanent homes that would include roads, drainage and other infrastructure. the plan is that the american red cross would build the homes, including water and sanitation. we anticipate spending as much as $30 million in this planned partnership with usaid. second, the american red cross is working on a separate housing project with the inter-american development bank or i.d.b. we anticipate we will spend as much as $15 million to construct homes on land being identified by the haitian government including roads, sanitary systems, electrical services and other infrastructure. these projects are part of the $100 million we plan to invest
to provide tens of thousands of people with permanent homes. they will unfold over the next few years. so, before i take your questions, i do want to offer a perform perspective. my experience in haiti is like nothing i have ever experienced. i have made several trips since the earthquake and each time i experience every single possible emotion. deep sadness and despair, but also pride, joy and hope. unlike all americans, i really wish the pace of progress could be faster in haiti. i would like to see all a haitians living in permanent holes with robust livelihoods and have vibrant communities. instead, about 800,000 people are still living under tarps and tents while the haitian government works to sort out land other issues. this is not easy in a country
where title documents often didn't exist and the government workforce was decimated during the earthquake. while much has been done in haiti, the conditions are still very tough for the people there. i keep reminding myself that haiti was a very poor country before this devastating earthquake. more than 70% of haitians were living on $2 a day or less. only one in three had access to safe drinking water. less than half the people in haiti have electricity. the literacy rate is 45%. in many cases aid groups are not just rebuilding haiti. we are building some of the infrastructure for the very first time. and, of course, the recent events of the past few months like the cholera outbreak, hurricane tomas, civil unrest of the election results, have only
kpoup compounded the miss ary -- misery. there is also hope an progress. the determination, spirituality and positive attitude of the people that i have met in haiti are absolutely inspirational. i'm also inspired by our red cross workers on the ground who endure many of the same hardware ships to be there every day helping others under incredibly challenging circumstances and accomplished so much. i'm moved by you who entrusted us to spend your dollars wisely to best help the people of haiti and that is what we are doing. i'm personally committed to spend it in a way that will make our donors proud. thank you very much. [applause]
>> first question from the audience and do not hesitate to send them. how is the current political atmosphere affecting efforts? >> i mentioned civil unrest and that unfortunately was a real y reality. as a result, a lot of the aid operations had to stand down traerl. -- temporarily. the prime minister and president bill clinton are working in the interim haitian commission and they are still meeting, approving projects. the ones i described here were put in front of the commission and it is still moving. it is moving slowly. >> this member asks how much has the haitian government helped or
hindered your work there? >> as i said, their job is not easy. people were living in homes that had no titles. if you visited haiti and you see the rubble, it is incredible with what they have to do. the good news is they completed the work to label the yellow, green and red houses. the projects that i described are starting to manufacture forward. i'm seeing transitional shelter spring up. we are building 20 to 30 every day seven days a week. so there is progress but the haitian government has a lot of hard work to do with the decimated workforce. >> understanding that the red cross is a donor agency, what is your reaction to discussions that you hear in the new congress of cuts to foreign aid budget, accountability with relief efforts and the general
atmosphere of budget cutting and deficit cutting you see in congress? >> as the c.e.o. of the american red cross one of our seven tenets, neutrality and i want to be neutral on all things political. but we're working close with the state department, u sfrpblgt aid and they are helping us forge ahead in haiti. >> you mentioned that you had seen examples of hope and i understand pier rigs that kept you -- inspiration that helped you keep going. what is an example that gives you hope? >> there are signs of hope all over haiti. you can walk around haiti and hear hammering as transitional shelters go up. you see kids with artificial limbs that are walking for the first time since the earthquake. people look healthier in haiti. when he was there the first time there were so many injured
people. now you can see that people, the healthcare system was nonexistent before. only one in 10,000 people had access to healthcare. and there is also progress that you don't see. like the fact that a million people are few vaccinated against diseases that are widespread or water-borne illnesses were minimized in close quarters because of prevention, clean water distribution, et cetera. every time i go i am so delighted to see how much commerce is happening in the streets. it seems like there isn't an empty spot on the curb where somebody hasn't set up some sort of shop and is is selling something. i have seen people using our red cross tarps and tents. i saw a restaurant that had a table for two and it was fully booked. i saw a manicurist, a barber
shop. these are beautiful signs of progress and a testimony to the resiliency and determination of the haitian people. >> following up on the examples of healthcare and how do you take what is a relief effort, mass euimmune immunization and is in a sustainable health system? >> that is an excellent question. we are helping to keep the doors open of the two hospitals that i described. the haitian government has started paying the salaries in the university hospital, which we think is a great sign. but for the healthcare to be sustainable it has to be a government run institution. the aid will eventually run are out. we have $479 million. that sounds like a lot but it
won't keep hospitals going forever. the haitian government has begun to engage and we are working with them to transition the salaries over to the government. >> so, when a disaster occurs there is the initial burst of aid to deal with the crisis, then you have the long ir-term development aid and there is always the question of where you put resources. you had the example of food where there was an immediate rush and then the desire to push it away because of the damage to the agricultural economy. when do you make the judgments that you have left the crisis phase and are in the longer-term phase and to what extent are we in one phase and not into another in different areas? >> so, that decision varies in each and every disaster. they are all a little different. as a humanitarian, i never want to stop distributing relief. you want to keep continuing it.
but i know that if we were to do that, at the end the money would run out and we would leave and there would be nothing to show for the incredible outpouring of generosity from the american public. so, as people are leaving the tented communities, which is a sign that people are getting back on their feet, we have started to divert funds to recovery as i described with the permanent housing and also the transitional homes. it is important to do this because it is a sign of progr s progress, it is a permanent, lasting impression on the country. at the same time, we are constantly prepared for un speb unexpected disaster like the cholera outbreak or hurricane tomas. we work closely with the government of haiti, the people on the ground, our sister
society, the haitian red cross, to get a sense for when it is right to start doing recovery efforts. in the case of haiti we feel it is time to start breaking ground and start building permanent homes. one issue is how much population is concentrated in port-au-prince. you referenced greenfields plans to disperse them. you talked about building homes and infrastructure, water, drainage, et cetera. how do you create an economy for the towns? >> your observation is exactly correct. port-au-prince, before the earthquake, had a population of 2.5 million people. and they say it was a city built to accommodate 900,000. so even before the earthquake struck it was overpopulated. when you look at the blueprints that the interim commission has
worked on to figure out long-term recovery, it includes flattening port-au-prince a bit and dispersing the residents outside of the community. and there has to be an effort to provide lively hoods, jobs, et cetera. part of our recovery is to continue to support livelihoods. yesterday there was an announcement where two korean textile manufacturers are going to set up operations in haiti. and that is going to be creating 20,000 jobs. infrastructure, utilities, livelihoods, schools, community centers, all of these are required to make haiti a vibrant community. it is not just homes, which is why in the greenfields efforts we are coordinating with partners to make sure those
things are available before we start digging. and we are also making sure that our initial projects are close to port-au-prince where there are job centers and possibilities for employment. >> on the topic of pace of recovery funding, you will often hear when an effort is initially put forth that the money is being spent too quickly, the economy can't absorb it. people who don't say that will tend to say you are not spend being the money fast enough because it is being spent inefficiently because your organization can't disburse the aid. these are contradictory concepts. how does one manage the pressure and how does one know you have been spending at the proper pace? >> that is an excellent question and it is a true observation. if we don't spend it at a really rapid pace people say why are you not spending fast enough.
if we had blown through the $479 million in the first year i'm confident that people would have have said what the heck did you do with the money. you used in the question how do you deal with the pressure. the way i wake up in the morning and can look in the mirror is by saying i want to spend the money through a lens of two factors. o one, would it make our donors proud? two, will it help the people of haiti? we have resisted the urge to just dump money because you want to make sure it is spent wisely. in a number of initiatives where we're working with partners and we make sure we put out requests for applications that they will spend the money wisely, that we have the ability to audit where the funds are going. we want to make sure at the end of the day we can account for every single dime and that we don't succumb to pressure, that
we really just do the right thing. >> related to this question, according to one report donations in the wake of hurricane katrina were spent much more quickly the first year than in haiti. what is different about haiti's conditions that has organizations spending on reconstruction more slowly? >> in the u.s. during hurricane katrina -- and i ought to preface this by saying katrina was about four years before my time when i started at the american red cross. but included in our work in katrina was an enormous financial aid package where we were supplement being the work that -- supplement being the work that fema had done. we talk the outpouring of donations and gave money to the victims that were impacted. we did it with debit cards and were able to transfer the donations directly to the people there. that was one effort. the other thing is, katrina
happened in the u.s. people could get on buses and leave the city. i read somewhere that only 60% of the people returned to new orleans. they could get on buses, move in with relatives. get jobs. in a lot of ways it was easier to get relief done quickly because there wasn't that same long recovery effort. you just walk around haiti and you see that recovery has to be a huge part of our donations or else there will be nothing to show for it. so, here we are planning recovery operations and, as i said in my speech, this isn't to rebuild haiti. this is to build parts of haiti for the very first time. >> before this address i was speaking with a person in the reception remarking how the attention span for disasters can often be very short. are regrettably the fact this
one year later people are still talking about haiti can be unusual by the standards of humanitarian disasters. you have a large haitian community and nearby access to u.s. media and things that help it. but while this is happening there are other humanitarian disasters. this person questions has haiti taken the oxygen out of the room? is it harder to raise dollars for other needs and what areas other than haiti need more assistance but may be suffering from lack of attention? >> so, has haiti taken the oxygen out of the room? this disaster struck a cord with the american public like no other. the visuals on tv were horrific and much more vivid and, for whatever reason, the media went deeper into showing some really graphic images that will stay with all of us a long time.
the other thing is just the sheer number of donors, not the amount necessarily but the number of donors. i walked through the airport with my red cross pin on and a kid will come up and say i gave you $10, what are you doing with it? there are so many people that feel a vested interest and connection to haiti. the question is, has it diverted our attacks? no. we responded to 70,000 disasters last year. we delivered half the nation's blood supply and trained 10 million on life-saving skills and supported military families to the tune of 500,000 connections each year. could we use donations for that? absolutely. absolutely. there is a bit of donor fatigue because of haiti. and there are a lot of things going on in our country that the red cross is providing and we
exist because of the generosity of the american public. skwraoeurbgs r >> when i person sends money by the cell phone does the phone company get a cut? >> they didn't in haiti. they didn't take fees which is pretty amazing. another question i get on cell phones is did my kid text hundreds of dollars. i'm here to assure you that the answer is no because you could only text twice. so they were either $10 or $20 donations. we love this medium. we are constantly sending texts back to the people that donated with little status reports telling them how their money is working and what we are doing.
it is a great way to make people feel connected to the performance of haiti and american red cross. >> are you are able to harvest that for your mailing list? >> we actually sent a text that invited people to opt in by texting us their e-mail addresses. i think that we got between 5% and 10%. so we do communicate with performance now via e-mail. it is hard to send a stewardship report like the one i gave you in a text message. so, we are delighted for anyone to get on our website and give us an e-mail address because we want to keep them informed. the more we can tell donors about what we are doing, not only in haiti but throughout the american red cross, the more connected they feel and the level of transparency is
something that we welcome at the red cross. >> could you talk more about the role of the haitian community in the u.s.? >> we work with the diaspora very closely. we solicit their opinions, get their advice, ask them to volunte volunteer. when the earthquake first struck we asked creole speaking people to they staff a ship that was used for critical care. we rely on themle to -- them to help guide us. we have dedicated staff at the red cross who interact with the haitian diaspora. we do outreach in cities where there is a big population. they are vital to keeping us
informed. they all have relatives back in haiti. so they can help keep the finger on the pulse of what is going on. they are vocal. they demand transparency. that is something that we welco welcome. we keep them informed and have quite an outreach to make sure that we have a dialogue. >> you spoke about your efforts with accountability. do you see other organizations working as hard on that topic as american red cross and what are the greatest tpraeurpbt seu challenges you -- transparency challenges you see in the effort? >> are donors are demanding transparency. if there are organizations that are not providing it i assure you they will. we want to lead transparency and
for the most part we share everything we have. the biggest is when is too much too much. sometimes the facts and figures and details get a pwebit stulti everyone ng. in is a point where transparency is so overwhelming people don't really grasp it. we are happy to share the way we are spending our dollars, the way our budget looks, a lot of this is in our one-year report. but if there is press that has questions we welcome it. this is good not only for nonprofits because it keeps us on our toes and forces us to do the right thing but it is good for philanthropy. there are more that will want to donate when they understand where their dollars are going.
>> when do you expect haiti to be a functional society with permanent homes, no tents and developed civil society? >> that is a tough question. i think that i would have to have a degree in urban planning to give a realistic answer. i can tell you that in japan, after the earthquake, it took seven years to get kobe back to where it was before the earthquake, and that was one city in a country with extraordinary infrastructure and resources. as i said, haiti was such a poor country to begin with that there are people living in the tented communities that have told us that they are better off now than they were before the earthqua earthquake. so i could give the answer it will take a long time. some of the projects will take a long time.
construction takes a long time. and it is going to require a coordinated effort, it will require utilities, infrastructu infrastructure, water, sanitation. i will not give up hope that we can get there. the reason i have the hope is that when you ask the people in the tented communities what do you need, they don't say water, they don't say food or shelter, they don't say clothing. they say, "i need a job." with a society that is so eager to work, it seems to me that there is tremendous hope for haiti in the future and that as people discover how industrious the society is, i like to think that we will see job opportuniti opportunities, offshore manufacturing and the like that will help bring haiti back at a faster pace. >> what has been your most moving or powerful memory over the past year?
>> oh, my goodness. there are so many images that flew in my face when you asked that. when i went to haiti the first time, nobody smiled. nobody smiled. when i came home i couldn't smile. it was like my smile muscles were frozen. i stood in my shower and i thought, oh, my gosh, the stuff that we take for granted. the fact that i can stand here and have potable drinking water pouring down the drain without giving in a thought was so amazing to me. and on my next trip to haiti i came back and people were smiling. i have in my memory what those
smiles looked like. i saw kids that had taken pieces of sheets and cloth they were using for the tents that i talked about, they were now under tarps and tents and they had taken the cloth and were using them as kites and flying against the back tkrdrop of a b sky and squealing and giggling and were just joy on their faces was a memory that i will keep with me for a very long time. >> we are almost out of time but before the last question we have a couple of matters. first of all to remind our members tomorrow the recent former governor of minnesota will be launching his book tour at the national press club for his memoir. on january 26 this is not a luncheon but the national press
club will hold a night of solidarity with haitian journalists. proceeds from the fund-raiser are hosted by a haitian advocacy group and then on february 3, we have members only luncheon with ben bernanke. the topic is to be determined but i think we have some guesses. to present our guest the one the only the always waited for national press club mug. >> thank you, alan. >> the final question, you have spoken here before and you are speaking today on the one-year anniversary. what can you tell us on the second anniversary? >> my goodness. first of all, before i answer that question, you have no idea how much i could have vet this -- covet this cup.
i'm working on getting a set so i will be back. i hope in a year i can report that our financials are stable, that the american public is still reaching into their hearts and supporting the american red cross. that we continue to be there for people in need, and i'm almost 100% sure that i will also report that i have the best job in the entire world. thank you very much. [applause] >> thank you, gail mcgovern. this meeting of the national press club is adjourned. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2011] [captioning performed by national captioning institute]
>> added that is at 10:00 a.m. eastern on c-span. >> starting tuesday, the house takes up the repeal of the health care law. watch the debate and final vote live on c-span, and go to c- span.org to read the bill on line and continue the conversation on c-span's twitter and facebook pages. >> this week on "q&a," college students from all over the country talk about their experiences in washington, d.c. the program allows the students to meet members of congress and hear from administration officials and journalists. officials and journalists.