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tv   Washington Journal  CSPAN  May 1, 2012 7:00am-10:00am EDT

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william mccants joins us. and a discussion on the effectiveness of so-called federal green energy process. and later, "time" magazine national security correspondent mark thompson on access to mental health care by u.s. veterans. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012] [captioned by the national captioning institute --www.ncicap.org--] host: good morning and welcome to "washington journal" on this tuesday, may 1, 2012. it's the first anniversary of the killing of osama bin laden at his compound in pakistan. secretary of state hillary clinton and tim geithner are on their way to beijing are on their way to discuss u.s.-china relations. our question for you this morning is about the minimum wage.
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nationally, it's $7.25. do you think it's high enough? and what about your state? here are the numbers to call -- host: you can find us on twitter, facebook or website. the minimum or more? the minimum wage in most states is $7:25. -- 7:25. many are higher considering raising the mini camps. you can see the map. massachusetts is at 8 dollar. connecticut, $8.25.
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district of columbia, $8.25. out west, more in the $7.50 range including new mexico. you see the west coast, california is at $8. it's a debate, reports steven greenhouse as the nation's economy slowly recovers and income equality emerges. lawmakers are --
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host: let's go to houston, texas. brenda is a democratic caller. hi, brenda. caller: thank you for taking my call. it definitely should be raised. come on now. $7.25 an hour? libby, do me a favor. would you make sure you point out the republican callers? i'm just curious as to how they feel about the minimum wage, especially since their leaders are the one who is vote against it. thank you for taking my call. host: jerry is up next. columbus line. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. i want to see a living wage like civilized countries like switzerland and the netherlands both have and i wish c-span would do a program on a living wage. this $7.25 in ours is ridiculous and i've been retired for over
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20 years but i started working for 25 cents an hour at a bakery and that was the minimum wage in 1938. thank you very much and have a wonderful day. host: hey, jerry what, do you think would be a living wage? caller: i let the economists figure that out because like i say, i really don't know what a living wage should be. that's why i wish c-span would get out from behind that counter and do a program on living wage. what would it be? have a wonderful day. host: tina is a republican in alexandria, virginia. good morning. caller: good morning. actually, i called because i think it's a ridiculous question quite frankly. it's obvious that the minimum wage should be raised. and actually it should be $25 an hour. host: ok. caller: the cost of living is
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ridiculously expensive to live here. so why won't they pay minimum wage of at least $25 an hoyer? host: all right. we're looking at statistics from department of labor showing us some of the minimum wages at states that are callers are calling from -- let's hear from nashville, tennessee, where pam is a democratic caller. caller: it should definitely be raised. the people who complain the most about people who don't pay taxes because they're too poor to pay taxes or they're living on government assistance are the same people who say the minimum wage should not be raised. host: and what do you make of that, pam? caller: it's just ironic. host: let's look at what some of the states are facing. small business owners are upset about a plan to raise the minimum wage in new york state claiming they cannot afford
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increased pay. small business owners from across the state are voicing their upset over a plan to raise the minimum wage. the new york state legislature is eyeing a measure to increase it by $150 -- 125. sheldon silver says --
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host: jimmy is an independent caller in atlanta, georgia. what do you think? caller: well, yeah, it's really kind of a ridiculous question because every price in america and in the world is always raising, always going up and except for the wages of those people that have to buy those goods and services and people that can make a decision could change the wages or raise the wages, they're always getting raises. congress and the representatives for the america -- they're always getting raises. they're always voting on wages raised for themselves and they're always in the hundreds of thousands of dollars and they always get a lot of benefits basically so they can live better and easier and cheaper and the people who work, we the people of the united states -- host: jimmy -- caller: we don't get the same
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benefits or tax breaks. host: the minimum wage in your state is $5.15 an hour. that's lower than the federal rate. do you have friends who make minimum wage? what's your experience? caller: well, i'm an independent owner. i own my own small business myself, but i have been, you know, at the point of minimum wage and, you know, minimum wage keeps you poor. you make enough money to go to work, come home and go to work. in new york city, $50,000 is a -- $50,000 a year is not a lot of money. that's a lot of money in other places but that's not a lot here. people are making $12,000, $16,000 and live in new york city? it's a no-brainer. the cost of living in life should be given to we the people. host: let's look at the department of labor statistics. it says you can look at any
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state here and see which states are below the federal minimum wage which are higher. where federal and state law differ, the higher rate does apply. you can see green states have a higher rate than the federal level. red state s have a lower minimum wage than the federal level. and georgia has one of those. the "new york times" had an on sed on -- ed on new york on $15,000 a year. imagine trying to survive in new york city on less than $15,000 a year. that's what person making a minimum wage earns for a full-time job. it's time to do something about it. at legislative hearings across the state, new yorkers have talked about how they struggle to survive on the minimum pay. a woman routinely waits until after 5:00 p.m. to buy end-of-day bread for our family. a waiter survives on his
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restaurants' leftovers and a woman juggles two full-time minimum wage jobs for a 70-hour workweek. adam in pennsylvania, republican caller. hi there. caller: i feel really bad for the working poor. it's really difficult to get by but i don't'how raising the minimum wage here is going to help that much. first of all, all these small businesses, coffee shops, different gas stations, things like that, you know, how are they going to survive if they have to pay a quote-unquote living wage if what the one caller say? $25 an hour? you would only see megacorporations left. you pretty much kill a lot of small businesses in the country. it is a higher cost of living.
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many people that make $15,000 a year don't live in manhattan. you know, there are obviously people making minimum wage there and it's horrible, but, you know, it's the economy that has to improve. i don't really see adding and making things that much better. oh, now you made $18,000 a year. you know, you have to go out there and work and learn a trade. learn something that's going to make some money. and educate yourself. host: we're looking at the pennsylvania minimum wage rate there at $7.25 an hour. we read a moment ago a piece in the "new york times" an op-ed saying the minimum wage should be raised. here's a little bit pushback of that --
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host: next up is henry, a
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democratic caller in mccaul creek, mississippi. hi, henry. caller: good morning. how are you? host: good, thanks. how are you? caller: i'm fine. i really, really think that they should have a living wage for each state. some states are poorer than some. some have more income than others. it's a struggle for poor people every day. to get up there and go to work. some have to spend a third of their money going to work for gasoline, for food, every day. it's really a struggle. i think this nation should be better than this. i just believe that people should have -- people should have every opportunity in this nation, this is the richest country in the world, to go to work and take care of their family. most people want to work, but if you're working for $7.50 an hour
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and got a mortgage and a car note, then you don't have any money. you're just working for nothing. and it's really a shame that american people, the people that run this country would allow poor people to not have enough to live on. we work all our lives to try to make this a better country and but the people who are running the country, they don't want to help the poor people. they want it all and don't want to help. not at all. and that just don't make no sense to me. host: here's a tweet from bill. he writes people are desperate for jobs. over 21 million are unemployed, worried about the wage base later and get people back to work. tom an independent caller in florida. hi, tom. caller: how are you doing? host: good, thanks. how are you? caller: first of all, i'm ok. i want people to get over it.
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but it's going to effect -- how many people go down to those dollar stores and spend a dollar to go get all those little things? you see how much harder that is going to be? host: ok. here's dr. dunk on twitter. raising wages affects the costs of goods. you raise the minimum wage to $20, get ready for bread costing $10 a loaf and milk costing $20 a gallon. lauren in elk grove, illinois. caller: good morning. thanks for c-span. i've heard some really ridiculous comments. some good ones too. the people that realize the minimum wage raising it too high is going to increase inflation. it really doesn't help the poor. and i'm not sure what it should be. in fact, i'm not sure that -- you know, the market should really bear the costs.
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where you live in the country, if the minimum wage is, you know, $7.25 in one state and california or new york, you can't live on that. the companies there are going to have to hire at higher rate. i've lived in texas. i've lived in illinois. i've lived in california. and the minimum wage really should be just that. when people call it a living wage, they're distorting the fact. minimum wage was supposed to be an entry level position where people, young people, and even, you know, people in their midlife that are entering the workforce, you know, mothers in the old days have to raise children and want to go in the workforce that, was supposed to be a way for people who couldn't go to college. they couldn't get training on the job. for example, you can go to like a mcdonald's. i'll use that as an example can. to work as minimum wage. while you're there, you can learn about how to deal with the
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public. you can learn about finance with money. you can learn about inventory control. you can learn about organization. you can learn about so many things. and then take those skills and move up the ladder. what's what the minimum wage was supposed to be for not a living wage. it was supposed to be an entry level second income in a family, what have you to gain skills but yet, we have the government who wants to spend $50 billion a year for a training program for people when they should be getting their training via the minimum wage which is an entry level, a stepping stone to get into the economy and learn so many valuable skills that they can actually move up and take those skills and make higher living wages. host: lawrence, your state of illinois has higher minimum wage than the federal level. it's at $8.25. what do you think about that? caller: well, i'm moving as soon as possible. i can't afford the taxes anymore over here. my wife is a minority. we've been married 26 years.
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she's hispanic and black, actually, and she came here and she worked for the minimum wage and was able to gain skills. she actually went through college and now as he degree and we're getting out of illinois. host: let's look at another facebook comment. william says no. the minimum wage shouldn't be raised. the last raising of the minimum wage put lots of small businesses out of business. and six people clicked that they liked williams' comment on the facebook page. tim is in palm desert, california, democrats line. california also a state with the higher minimum wage than at the federal level. it's up at $8. what do you think about that, tim? caller: well, i think it should be higher nationwide. republicans just refuse to understand that business cannot sell its goods and services to people who are so desperately
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underpaid because of reagan somics -- rakics -- reagan somics -- reaganomics. you can't logically expect to sell much to people who are struggling on flex shop wages. for these giant corporations to pay a living wage. thank you. host: here's a story from the liberal website. think progress. candidate romney supports raising minimum wage with inflation. gingrich pushes back. this is from january --
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host: you can see that clip on think progress' website. it says romney's support for indexing contrasts with republican-led efforts to weaken minimum wage lazarus in states such as maine, ohio, florida, and missouri.
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host: robert is an independent in orlando, florida. caller: they need to find a way to attach it to the cost of living. and start now. you know, the minimum wage and it should be a state by state basis. that's my opinion. host: story from "the new york post" this morning. the council defies mike, meaning mayor bloomberg passes a living wage. it would boost pay of projects receiving city suburgatory decides that the bill is a jobs killer. bloomberg has vowed to veto the bill, raising minimum pay for eligible developments to $10 an hour with benefits and $11.50 without. but the council gives it enough
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support for an override vote. an drew, republican, in los angeles. what's it like in l.a., andrew? caller: i think the gentleman in illinois made a very, very clear point. looking at term like minimum wage. it opens up a can of worms. i think it's about what are we doing with the people in our country that are making this minimum wage? maybe we should call it learning wage. like the gentleman said from illinois, they should be spending their time learning and trying to advance themselves. my participates came to this country in russia in the early
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1970's. minimum wage would have been like a dream to them. they wouldn't think about that. they started advancing their family through education and hard work. that's the focus. i mean, a number is a number. what are people going to do with the number once they have it? host: mark, a democratic from l.a. caller: hi. i just have -- i want to go and express my concern here. here in los angeles, the cost of living is extremely high and minimum wage is not cutting it for everybody here. and another thing i want to mention is that it's out of control spending and when this spending continues in washington and unemployment continues to be above 8%, then there's no possible way that the federal minimum wage and the state minimum wage can be raised. so i think those three things needs to be taken care of before, you know, minimum wage can go up. and that's all i have to say.
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host: let's hear from rockville, maryland. peter, an independent. caller: good morning. thank you for c-span. host: good morning. caller: this might be useful to explore the idea of going with many minimum wages, not just one, but dozens or thousands of minimum wages. like the military does. based on the job that's being done and index to county. the county cost of living. the benefit here would be that there would finally be nothing for unions to do. a union these days only asks for more money. if there's a minimum wage index and county and to job type. businesses would have more incentive to stay in the u.s.a. and not go overseas because of the extraordinarily high payroll. host: should states decide that? caller: that should be part of the equation, yes. host: ok.
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sally, republican. grays harbor, countity. washington state. caller: good morning. it's 4:00 over here on the west coast. host: yes. caller: i'm a fiscal conservative. when i started working at the age of 13, minimum wage in iowa was $3.50. but now we have high minimum wage out here in washington state. our government live like queens and queens. -- kings and queens. they have all these freebies. the cars that cost a fortune. and i don't know how we're going to turn this country because they will not even have a budget. they will not -- you know the majority of americans feel like we're going in the wrong direction. the majority of americans. and raising the minimum wage is
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like throwing crumbs to people. our legislatures are -- they act like kings and queens. i don't know what else to say. but i don't think that raising the minimum wage is going to help. we need to cut the spending like one person i heard suggested but they're not going to do it. host: sally, washington state has the highest minimum wage rate in the country, over $9. caller: and it doesn't help because our gas out here is $4.19. we live in large states. we drive long ways so when the truckers, they have to make their money. everything's gone up. my p.u.d. bill has gone up. my electric -- my, you know, everything has gone up. i'm not kidding. it's horrible. we have like seven hike raises and they're going to -- soon, i won't even have a home. i'm a gold star mother. i've given my son.
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he's died for our country. everything's go -- i don't see things getting better. i really don't. i feel like america is dying. it's dying. our credit rating has gone down. our money doesn't purchase what it should. i don't see things getting better. i'm sorry. and then i've always said that the recession, it never stops here. there's places in the united states that didn't get better. and it's getting worse. i feel like we're sliding into a depression or double-dip recession, whatever you want to call it. but i don't see good things happen for our country. it's even getting worse globally. host: well, sally, i'm sorry for your loss. thanks for sharing your story and opinion. let's look at what the foundry has to say. conservative policy news blog from the heritage foundation. now here's a conservative take. it asks should the minimum wage be raised? the editors at bloomberg thinks so they maintain that low wage
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jobs are expanding and the hike would boost the economy. hiking the minimum wage remains a bad idea. it says the percentage of michael kim m.v.p. jobs has declined. just over 5% of all hourly paid workers in the u.s. make the minimum wage which is a smaller percentage than 1979. the foundry's david wine burger says raising the minimum wage sounds compassionate. thinking a second time shows it would hurt the very workers its supporters want to help. host: st. louis, missouri,
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anthony in our democrats line. good morning. anthony, are you with us? caller: hello. host: hi. you're on the air. caller: hello. my name is anthony. and i started working in 1968. i was born in 1955. the minimum wage was $1.65 an hour. and i decided to accept that wage. i was asked what did i want to make at $5 and they told me to start counting from one to 100. and then they told me that a human being was only worth $1,000. so for the united states, they have everything and -- so in the year 2047, i'll be probably 80 something years old and i'll still be getting a wage of $15
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an hour. my father is 80 and he's still working and he makes $7 an hour. host: we have a comment on twitter. republicans advocating against raising the minimum wage if you don't raise minimum wage, how can you afford goods and services? in warren, michigan, ed, independent line. hi, ed. caller: good morning, c-span. enjoy the program. a lot of good points have already been made but i think economically, the way him minimum has been pretty much debunked, but it's important if you think of minimum wage. if you think of wage as a price then i think the argument becomes clearer. you know, we did try price controls in this country before and they don't work. if you think of wage as a price,
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it's a minimum price for something. why should a minimum price be put on anything? if an employer could pay somebody $5 and somebody gains advantage at $5, why surmount that be allowed? if you tell somebody they have to pay a minimum at something, you put the margin of employers out of a position to hire somebody. a minimum price for something is not good. if somebody told you had to pay a minimum price for a car, and you say it's not worth that to me, but the government said hey, that's what they're allowed to charge, i mean, people wouldn't be ok with that. i don't understand why people think minimum wage laws do anything but bad things. host: let's look at a couple of other news in the news. british lawmakers says rupert measure duck is unfit to lead his global media empire --
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"the washington post" has his story. white house acknowledges drone strikes. the obama administration formerly acknowledged for the first time its use of drone strikes against terrorism suspects lifting but not removing the shroud of secrecy that surrounds the use of targeting killing operations overseas. saying president obama had instructed aides to be more open about the controversial issue. white house counter-terrorism advisor john brennan offered the most extensive outline yet that officials had for years refused to discuss even as evidence of its lethal toll mounted in such countries as yemen and pakistan. and a story right next door, bin laden worried about his al qaeda
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image. we see this story in the "washington post" looking at osama bin laden, what his thoughts and concerns were in the months leading up to his death we'll talk more about al qaeda and one year later after osama bin laden's death in just a little bit. obama and romney debate the raid. republican says triumph being used as a political weapon. this story about whether or not the death of osama bin laden should be brought up in candidate debates and forums and ads and the like. this one ties to romney in 2008. helped fuel an equity firm that his family profitted from a month after mitt romney ended his bid for the republican nomination in february of 2008. his eldest son met with a beef company executive who had been a major campaign donor over a posh dinner the meeting was not about politics. instead, the son who had been a senior adviser to his for a and mr. wick presented the executive
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with the business proposition to invest in a private equity fund they were starting and it talks about how successful the private equity fund has been and traces that. that's in the "new york times." and you can see images this in the washington times today looking at an ironworker on top of one world trade center. it's now at 1,250 feet. it top the empire state billion as new york's highest skyscraper yesterday as it continues being built. an ethics classes for the secret services. johns hopkins university has a course following the colombian scandal. they will take part to be overseen by professors, a response to the widening prostitution scandal that started in colombia.
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the training which pass -- past participants cover asrangue of practical and theoretical ethics comes as the secret service works to address allegations that its agents hired prostitutes in colombia. president obama has a new campaign slogan. you can see this morning in the "new york post" -- caller: part of my
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responsibility was to manage a group of craftsmen to mechanics to manage the maintenance of the facility of the property. and i found that minimum wage had nothing to do with reality. minimum wage is something for a young high school graduate or less to go out in the market and expect to get as a minimum wage. i think on one hand, it keeps the companies honest where they have to pay at least something. but on the other hand, it's not meant for anybody with 10 years experience and -- well, 10 years of experience and a family of
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four. it was never meant to be that way. and i don't know why we're making it that way, but there's no free lunch in america. it's a capitalist society. you are paid for what you produce. the more you produce, the more you're paid and that's it. if you are not skilled, if you're not experienced, then you can expect the least pay. and that's not the same as if you have the most experience and the most education and the most training that you're going to become a millionaire. but it doesn't work that way. it's a capitalist society. it takes chances. sometimes you win, sometimes you lose but you've got to show up and play the game. thank you very much for c-span. host: let's look at a comment from twitter from joe. is it better to be employed at $7 or unemployed at $8 an hour?
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up next is carol -- rather, barbara in st. louis, missouri, on our independent line. we've got a couple of st. louis callers on line. go ahead, barbara. caller: yes. i would like to comment on the way it is in missouri here. i really believe that the minimum wage should be more of a living wage because what happens is companies will hire you in at whatever rate they're required to hire you in. it's not based on your experience. it's based upon a lot of times, your needs. it's based upon many different issues, but not necessarily on your training or what you can produce. so we find that there are a lot of families that are forced to live on a minimum wage because the company doesn't have to pay you any more than they do and it's not always your education. women in this country. you know, women in this country
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on an average make 77 cents for every dollar that a man makes. so it's not a case of the employers being willing to deal with their employees on anything that's considered a fair plain. wal-mart is an excellent example of that. wal-mart will hire you in at whatever rate the lowest rate that they have to hire you in and it had gotten so bad before wal-mart went to court that they would literally hiring in people at the minimum wage knowing they couldn't live on it and then giving them information where they could go and apply for food stamps. they could go and apply for medical assistance. the government, and the government would be picking that up. so this is a wonderful country. there's no better place, but the truth of the matter is corporate america, even from the neighborhood store up into large
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conglomerates do not deal on a ethical fair basis with their employees. you have nuts who makes millions of dollars a year because they know how to work the system. and you have well educated people who are women or they are black or they are well educated but they'll never make that extra 34 or 37 cents over the 77 cents that women make. host: let's look at a tweet. e.p.w.v. law says raising the minimum wage raises consumer cost making minimum wage employees just as poor, relatively as before. we have another st. louis caller now. carol, democrats line. hi there. caller: hi. i'm calling and i hope i can get my point. when they say the employers have a problem and they'll raise the pay as it goes along, this does not work. this is why unions were formed
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originally. the employers is going to get everything he can get -- employer is going to get everything he can get. that is why we don't have employers that carry health assurance. -- insurance. they don't have to. they won't. and if you don't have a union that forces these employers to compensate the workers, what in the world are we coming to? the raises won't come. you started $7.25. giving you $8 is a big raise and you should work another 10 years years for that is. host: let's go to mike. caller: the federal minimum wage is a terribly bad idea. people talking about a living wage. the living wage in san francisco is different than in victorville, california, let alone someplace else in the country. so to have a minimum wage and living wage does not make sense.
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and at the same time, if you follow the logic of the people that are carpeting for this minimum wage, why don't we raise it to, i don't know, $40,000 a year and then everyone would be middle class or if we raise it to million a year and we would be part of the 1%. it doesn't make sense. if the state wants to have a minimum wage, that's a state issue and it may or may not make sense. the idea of a living wage is a social responsibility of an employer. and finally, you know, i've had high school -- my sons got jobs in this area and they all started below the -- or above the minimum wage, i'm sorry. and they got raises after for showing up to work and doing their jobs well. they got raises over time. so the idea that the man is keeping people down at the minimum wage is salacious. it's an entry level wage and if you show up for work and you do your job well, you are more than
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likely, almost certainly going to be offered a pay raise or you'll be eligible for a higher paying job somewhere else based on your experience. so at federal minimum wage just is a wrong idea. host: all right. our caller mentioned the occupied wall street movement. let's take a look at what's going on on this may 1. reuters reports occupy wall street vows a day of demonstration in new york and across the u.s. in a crucial test of its staying power after emerging as a movement against corporate greed and economic inequality. the 99% populist movement which began as a 24-hour encampment in lower manhattan last fall and spread to cities across the country will join organized labor for a day of may 1 protest in what is called a day without the 99%. dozens of actions are planned across the country though some skepticism over how many will
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turn out. the event was first billed as a general strike but organized labor declined to sign on to that call. a couple of other stories in the news. callers talked about wage disparities between men and women. this from the "washington times." president obama pays a few women big bucks. the record versus bush's is mixed. top white house aide earn more than their male counterparts. a reversal from the george w. bush administration. they earn 4% more than the top male employees under mr. obama compared with the deficit of 12% under mr. bush. his record at the white house on closing the gender pay gap is mixed in a broader survey of the 121 white house employee who is were paid elise $100,000, 47 are
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women and 74 are men. that's better than in 2003, the third year of the bush administration. speculation about the vice-presidential field. who wants to be a veep, asks "u.s.a. today." romney's vetting gives voters a rare view of the tryouts. and it has list of folks who might be on the short list. i'll flip this page over. auditions could spotlight some strengths and weaknesses early. chris christie, nicky haley, bob mcdonald of virginia, marco rubio and paul ryan. the "wall street journal" says insiders are backing rob portman for a v.p. slot. this is reported by janet hook. it says the senator of ohio is the unpalin of the republican party and is being considered. other stories related to the v.p. slot. governor christie is opened to a pitch. he said that mitt romney is a
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convincing guy who might be able to persuade him to join the g.o.p. tifpkt he was asked by some high schoolers in his state and the opinion section of the "wall street journal" says anyone but condi. former secretary of state condoleezza rice. talks about her like scommood power. what she may go on to do next and whether or not she might end up being someone on the ticket. thanks for all your calls. let's get to one more on the topic of minimum wage. silver springs, maryland, gregory on our independent line. should the minimum wage be increased? caller: yes. no. well, yes and no. first, i like to start all the way back 25 minutes ago. there was a gentleman from l.a. he spoke very clearly about the idea that, you know, you -- his parents came from russia and they had the determineology to get a higher education and make more money than the minimum
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wage. the answer isn't really in my opinion in raising the minimum wage and as another gentleman pointed out while i was waiting that you pay for what you produce. well, here's my counterpoint and point to all of this is that we should raise the amount of money we pay teachers all across america so that we make education the priority for people that want to make money. and it's kind of like a self-encircling like non-vicious circle where you spiral upwards. and you end up with people who want to teach more people and people end up with more education and then we can lift ourselves out of this rut. host: ok. we'll leave it there. coming up next on "washington journal," william mccants from the center for naval analyst ease will discuss his new piece
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on foreign affairs magazine looking at the years since osama bin laden's death. and elona schor joins us at the administration claims that the energy policy is helping the economy. yesterday, president obama met with the japanese prime minister and while they were having a briefing with the press, the president talked about the chinese dissident who sought asylum with the'ems. here's an article at the "new york times." obama presses china on human rights trying to strike a balance there. let's listen to what he had to say. we'll be right back. >> president obama, could you confirm whether the blind chinese dissident is under u.s. protection in beijing? and how do you see that situation being resolved? and prime minister noda, how likely do you think it is that north korea will carry out a third nuclear test?
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how would japan respond to such a test and what would you like the u.s. do to respond? >> obviously, i'm aware of the press reports on the situation in china, but i'm not going to make a statement on the issue. what i would like to emphasize is that every time we meet with china, the issue of human rights comes up. it is our belief that not only is that the right thing to do because it comports with our principles and our belief in freedom and humans, but -- human rights but also because we think china would be stronger. as it opens up and liberalizes its own system. we want china to be strong and prosperous. and we're very pleased with all the areas of cooperation that we've been able to engage in.
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but we also believe that that relationship will be that much stronger and china will be that much more prosperous and strong as you see improvements on human rights issues in that country. i know it wasn't directed to me but i'll just make a quick statement around north korea. this was a topic of discussion between myself and prime minister noda. our consultation throughout the failed missile launch was i think reflective of how important our alliance is, not just to our two countries but to the region as a whole. and what i try to do since i came in office to make sure that north koreans understand that the old pattern of provocation that then gets attention and somehow insists on the world
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purchasing good behavior from them, that that pattern is broken. >> "washington journal" continues. host: will mccants is a contributor to foreign affairs. he has piece out today looking at al qaeda's challenge, what happened in the -- what's happened in the year since the killing of osama bin laden. how strong is the al qaeda threat? guest: that's difficult to evaluate. i mean, it depends on what your measurements are. on the one hand, there are places in the world where the message still resonates quite strongly such as in syria and are lot of al qaeda supporters are flooding to get involved in the fight. in yemen and somalia, things are also going moderately well for them, particularly in yemen. they've been able to take some villages. in somalia, the shabab joined al
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qaeda several weeks ago. so now al qaeda also controls territory in somalia. in some parts of the world, al qaeda is doing quite good. but there are other downsides to the year for them. i mean, the iran spring really took them by surprises. it took all of us by surprise. but one of the consequences of the iran spring is that particularly in egypt, you have very conservative muslim who is are getting involved in electoral politics which for al qaeda is a -- host: "the washington post" has a piece looking at the last months of oops' life. what documents and videos and things are showing and it says that he fretted about missing a huge potential marketing opportunity looking to reshape politics in the middle east. how has the iran spring change the power of al qaeda?
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guest: for bin laden, his focus has been on violence and using vines to -- violence to spark revolution. the iran spring took bin laden by surprise and he didn't have the revolutionary tool kit to deal with it. in contrast to his deputy who in the past has called for peaceful demonstrations in addition to violence. so he is much better suited to deal with the consequences of the iran spring. host: let's take a look at john brennan speaking yesterday to the white house. this is talking about the state of al qaeda. >> al qaeda is losing badly and bin laden knew it at the time of his death. and documents we seized, he confessed to disaster after disaster. he even urged his leaders to three the -- freestyle the tribal regions and go away from places with photographry and bombardment. it is harder than ever for al
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qaeda corps and pakistan to plan and execute large scale against our homeland. today, it is increasingly clear that compared to 9/11, the core of al qaeda is a shadow of itself. al qaeda is left with a handful of leaders and operatives and with continued pressure is on the path to its destruction. and for the first time since this fight began, we can envision a world in which the al qaeda corps is simply no longer relevant. host: you reflect on what mr. brennan is saying? guest: yeah, he's right. we could see a world where al qaeda corps are no longer realty. how strong will their affiliates be? particularly in yemen where they've gained a lot of ground? the fact that bin laden fretted about the fortunes of his organization, one is encouraging to the united states and its ally who is have been fighting
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al qaeda, but on the other hand shows that al qaeda is a learning organization. it's just -- it's not a robot walking on a single path but it is learning from its mistakes and i think you see this -- the evidence of this learning in yemen. the last time al qaeda tried its hands at state building in iraq, it was a disaster. it was very brutal in its implementation of islamic law. it didn't play very well with its sunni allies. al qaeda and the arabian peninsula is going about things very differently. they're very careful to at least give the appearance of helping its inhabitants, providing basic service like electricity and running water and they seem to be playing very well with the locals on the ground. you know, whether they be criminal elements or tribes. they don't seem to be trying to push themselves on to the people in yemen.
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so it's just one piece of evidence that yeah, al qaeda does lament its setbacks but it also learns from them. host: the "washington times" has a piece and it looks at terrorism after bin laden a year after the killing. several islamist groups loosely allied with al qaeda continued terror activities in northern africa and the middle east. you mentioned of course yemen. how closely linked and tide are they? what you described is sort of like the hydra. you cut off the head and another one grows. how connected are hay? how much communication is happening between these groups that we see spread out in this region? >> i think it would depend on group to group. they all communicate to some extent with al qaeda central. the intergroup communication is a little bit fuzzy. i would imagine the group in somalia and yem reason communicating with each other. i don't know about the al qaeda or the one in north africa.
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it's hard to say and perhaps we'll get some more insight when the bin laden documents are released later this week. host: will mccants, founder and blogger of jihad. if you want to join the conversation, here are the numbers to call -- if you're outside the united states, it's 202-628-0184. let's hear from britney, democratic caller in kentwood, louisiana. good morning. caller: good morning. how are you? host: good. caller: listen. i feel very concerned as an american. not just as being frightened, just been concerned only. i know and feel that there is al qaeda cells out there somewhere. the only thing i want to say is if this country is going to make
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venturing off for al qaeda, we really need to be ready if we're going to be ready as we were last time. the last time was one thing. but with this new al qaeda leader being so much of what he is and so ruthless as he is, i would not be surprised that there would be other counterships in the future. thank you so much. guest: yeah. i think al qaeda is still a threat and it will remain a threat to the united states but its ability to conduct operations in this country is greatly diminished. there has not been a major attack in this country since 9/11. there have been attempts, particularly the plane that was -- the -- they tried to bring down in detroit in 2009 which could have led to a high casualty count, but still, these attacks haven't happened. i think and it's indicative of
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how difficult al qaeda has found ed in attacking the united states that it's had to turn to calling on individuals to take up the mantle. it's no longer able to get operatives into this country. that's not to say they wait a moment recapture the capability again, but it's going to take some time. and i think it's also important to say that if we are struck again and struck in a severe way , we have to be careful not to overreact. i mean, i think over this past 10 years, we've seen that invading and occupying very large countries, muslim majority countries can lead to an even worse problem because you have -- it's a great propaganda boom for militant organizations. they're able to draw more recruits and more resources.
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i think we have to retool the way we go about counter-terrorism or it'll lead to a larger problem. host: a year ago in foreign policy f.p., there was a piece, osama bin laden is dead but how much does it matter? you can call the death of osama bin laden a gaping hole. has it lived up to your expectation? has that gaping hole been a case? guest: still a guest: i think so. they lost their founder, and bin laden has been replaced by a man whose track record has been very poor. he ran his organization into the ground, and it was one of the reasons he had to join al qaeda formally. he had wasted his core organization's resources. i do not think his -- the
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prospects for al qaeda central are good under the leadership of ayman al-zawahiri. that is not to say that other organizations will not thrive and represent a danger to the united states, but i think it will be rocky for al qaeda central. host: joyce. arkansas. republican. caller: good morning. i would like to ask, i have listened to quite a bit of news, and everything, and i especially listen to can start and everything, and i am wondering if our government is aware of the things happening in
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these arab countries to the christians? there are some in some places where they cannot even pray in their houses because if they find out they are killed. this is going on in the world today, and the news stations do not talk about this. i am wondering why. guest: i am not sure why the media does not cover it. certainly, our government is aware, and it is worrisome, and the fact that conservative islamic governments are coming into power means more than likely minority christian organizations will see their rights curtailed. this is something the united states government should be raising, but they have to balance that against national security interests which will
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oftentimes trump human rights concerns. host: olivia, birmingham, alabama. democratic caller. caller: this is a very intelligent young man you have on this morning, and i appreciate the conversation. it is very balanced. that is what we need in america. to carry them the president's about certain -- to pare down the president about certain things -- the president has information that we would never have. i do not believe in criticizing president bush because i do not know what information he had. we need to stop tearing our
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president down. al qaida is trying to take out america. they're not trying to take down the democrats, the republicans, or the independence. they are trying to kick down america. bin laden had a deep hatred for the president of the united states, president obama, and once you have him killed. we need to speak together on this issue. guest: it was surprising to me when i worked in government and was looking at the intelligence, how different the conversation was inside of government and outside of government. of course, the public does not have a lot of access to the information resources, and with good reason, and with some of
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the things the public rightly criticizes based on information they have, are probably things they would see it differently if they saw the big picture. host: jimmy excedrin twitter -- guest: some elements, certainly, but it is difficult to say. in libya, we have not seen evidence of a direct connection with al qaida. some power players in libya were in al qaida's orbit, but did not have direct ties, and their adopted forms of government that are at odds with al qaeda's agenda. in syria, i have read reports that they have some link with revolutionaries, which is to be expected because they have
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capable fighters able to pass around bomb-making skills, but the death of those connections are impossible to say -- depth of those connections are impossible to save from open sources. host: michigan. good morning. caller: lately, officials said we are not fighting al qaida. we are prompting them -- propping them up in egypt and yemen. "the new york times" said the fbi was behind every terrorist attack that was thwarted in america. i am in michigan, so i know everything about the christmas day plane.
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the guy in oregon, the fbi set him up, and he became a fall guy. i want to know if he knows about these contradictions. guest: by -- i do know that we are not friends with al qaida, and local law-enforcement works very hard to prevent anyone associated with the organization or aspires to be with your position from attacking this country. the current and previous administrations have been focused on destroying the organization. it is true that in the middle east there are many people that sound like al qaida in their theology, and sound like that in
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some respects in their policies, as long as these people are against the kind of attacks of the al qaeda and are for a pluralistic political system, they should be counted as friends, not enemies. host: talk about what is happening domestically. what do you see as the threat from internal efforts, whether they are americans or people able to come into the country? guest: i did not think the threat is that great. the fbi has done an excellent job of monitoring elements in the united states better support of of al qaeda. some people will get through, but we have not seen them able to have a large scale attack.
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some nots will always sign up, but i have been surprised that we have not seen more attacks over the last 10 years. i think it goes to the skill of local law enforcement and the fbi, and it goes to show that the muslims living in this country, who many people are suspicious of, it deserves credit for turning their back on al qaeda's caused. host: a story in "the new york times ." host: california. independent. caller: bill, i would like to take the caller from michigan's
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question one step further what evidence do we really have that osama bin laden was involved with 9/11, and furthermore what evidence do we have that the fairy tale about him being killed last year -- what evidence do we have to support that when numerous military people like oliver north has said that he died several years before that? guest: i cannot speak to the latter question. they never showed us a picture. some would be suspicious. i trust the government in that respect. regarding osama bin laden's responsibility for 9/11, he claimed it repeated the after the fact, so i take him at his
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word. host: bin laden," papers show fears for al qaeda's future. he pondered changing the name of his network. what are you looking forward to reading and learning from these documents? guest: i am looking forward to seeing how bin laden functioned as a manager. this is a person who had a lot of time on his hands and there is nothing worse than a board boss because he gets in everyone's business. the leaks we have seen suggest he was not just worried above where the organization was going strategically, but he was also thinking about what somalia should be planting for their crops. i think we will see someone who
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was involved in every facet of the organization. it will be difficult, i imagine, to figure out the extent to which people in the field, his field commanders were listening to him. just because somebody is giving new orders it does not mean they were being. out. it will be a challenge. -- they were carrying them out. it will be a challenge. not all of the documents will be released. i imagine we will get a couple of dozen. it will be hard to get a false sense of his role. host: "the washington post" points out that because he had no internet connection, documents were hand-delivered. you're talking about this feedback. how does the boss find out the work was executed? guest: right.
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how is he keeping up with current events? host: a former counter-terrorism official is quoted in "the washington post" -- he was not a recluse, the ceo of a global terrorist organization. guest: certainly. he was not a recluse. this is part of a larger debate about how much bin laden was involved in the organization. i think you'll see these debates resurrected. because there are not that many documents, everyone's theory will be confirmed. host: william mccants is a senior fellow with george washington university's homeland security institute, and is an
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analyst for the chance for of naval analysis. florida. benito. good morning. caller: i hear these scenarios about al qaida, but can we worry about the war debt? the everyy about clinton rich the hillary clinton war and her feminist -- the hillary clinton were, and her feminist radicals, which put laws in that case men out of their house. host: benito thinks we are off the topic, and this is from twitter.
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host: is this still relevant? should we still be focused on this? guest: to the extent that the death of bin laden was important, yes, we should still focus on this. i would like to see the day that people like me who focus any -- who focused on al qaida are irrelevant, but that is not the case, when people can produce a photo-up picture of new york city, even l -- and people freaked out. there is that level of anxiety about al qaida's ability to bring about another attack. it is media-worthy. host: pennsylvania. welcome. caller: mr. william mccants, are
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you familiar with "the lives of global g hyde -- the lives of global g hyde? guest: i am. caller: we supported the bosnian president to issue a passport to a osama bin laden in 1992, where osama bin laden visited and at least three different occasions. this was an explosive book exposing what was happening in bosnia. why did not get more attention from the media? on the cover it shows the
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streets. guest: it is an interesting book, but often this academic work is not remarked on in the media, and it is covering a topic that is not exactly current. i would like to go to the larger point, and that is the effect of these wars and al qaida's capabilities and the capabilities of other islamic militant groups. a friend of mine is looking at the effects of these conflicts in the middle east, and it is striking that with each of these conflicts, militant groups that get involved game more capabilities. their networks get larger. their ability to carry out operations gets better. that is one of my worries with
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the arab spring and some of the conflicts that have followed those revolutions, but with the support of al qaeda into those countries, what new capabilities will they generate and how will that affect american security? host: saint petersburg, florida. jim. independent line. caller: i think we have to realize that you can not change something that has been going on for thousands of years. people have their beliefs and they're willing to die and kill for them. we also have to realize this is a world in and of itself where people are people. it would almost be a blessing if we were attacked from the outside source, outside of all world. maybe we would you night and
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realize we have limited resources -- unite, and realize we have limited resources, but unbelievable opportunities to grow with each other. people have been dying for these causes for years, and we cannot intimidate them or change them. people say we have not been attacked for such a long time, but the bottom line is before 9/11 we really were not attacked at all. the fact that we've gone 10 or 12 years, this is not significant. people will die for their causes. they will wait for the right time, and they will do it again. host: we will leave it there and get a response from william mccants. guest: you will always find some that will sign up for a cause, not saying that they are irrational, but you always find
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extremists. the question is how many people will sign up? if they have other venues for venting their extremism, will they walk away from violence? i think they will. you will not deter everybody, but i think a lot of the problem, particularly with al qaida is that you have many regimes in the middle east that are quite repressive, but do not allow people a voice in the government, and you have had a series of conflicts that also gives military is a place to meet the military a place to train -- the military a place to train with one another. we've seen a transition to democratic governments, and i think with that he will see a lessening of this violence. host: from cnn today --
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host: the story goes on to say that the plots included seizing cruise ships and carrying out attacks. what do you make of this? then also, the level of encryption where these documents were found? guest: al qaeda it is sophisticated and it has used these messages in the past to pass messages to operatives. as far as targeting cruise
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ships, it is hard to think of a target al qaida has not targeted. it runs the gamut. the fact they would look at cruise ships is not surprising. host: kevin, boston. democrat line. caller: right now, in america, how hard you think it is for interest to attack when it is so easy for any american to get a weapon on the street. to attack somebody on a public train -- i get on the train every morning. there are a lot of people. i get nervous sometimes. guest: that is a good point. i have often wondered the same thing, just someone with a
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handgun going into a crowd. two reasons. there is not a lot of interest in supporting al qaida in that way. not that many people want to carry out violence on behalf of al qaida in this country, and there seems to be a real fetish in the global movement that supports al qaeda for explosives. there might be cultural reasons related to the movement that they prefer explosives over handguns, but i have also been surprised we have not seen more of it. host: our guest william mccants as a piece in "foreign affairs" today, and it is an update from a story of a couple of months ago.
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guest: it is a mixed bag. it is one of their favorite metaphors for evaluating the fruits of their jihad, and if they look at yemen, the could be moderately pleased in what they hope to achieve in the absence of a government in the southern part of the country. in somalia, i think they can be pleased they have been able to bring a large insurgent group into the fold, but they're losing ground there. they could be pleased that their message resonates with parts of the resistance in syria, but just as its message resonated with parts of the resistance in libya it does not mean the message will always resonate. it is telling that militants have walked away from al
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qaeda's model of government and are embracing the parliamentary system. host: eric, ashburton, virginia. independent line. caller: a caller from michigan broad of good points about contradictions. we are concerned with al qaeda- linked groups in somalia, yemen, and other countries like that. how can the president assured the american people that the group's we are supporting in syria and we were supporting in libya are not linked to al qaida? when the story of osama bin laden's killing came out, it was unraveling weeks after it was reported. first there was an armed resistance, then there was no armed resistance. first there was a woman used as a shield, then there was no woman used as a shield.
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there are conflicting stories. guest: on the first point about how the united states assures they are not working with bad actors, they have to develop good intelligence on the ground. it is always a concern when you are operating in these murky environment, as you do have to worry about whether or not you are supporting bad elements. it requires good intelligence. to the point above the story on ravelling regarding bin laden's death, what you had was a lot of excitement among senior administration officials jostling one another to be the first to tell the story, and them not being patient enough to wait and, with an official narrative. in the next few -- and waits to come out with an official narrative. in the next few days, you will
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see documents that explain in detail what happened. host: democrat. new jersey. good morning. caller: the first thing i want to ask about is iran. i just finished reading a book called "king of the south," and it states that iran has its hand in everything, trying to influence the forms of government in syria, libya, and even kenya, to make sure things go their way. we should concentrate on them, and this other stuff would go away. guest: i think iran is a
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challenging foreign policy issue for the united states, and they are trying to exert influence in the region. they exert much more influence in syria, which has been their allies for a number of years. they exert far less in egypt or libya, but it is a nation state with its own interests in the region and we should not be surprised. host: john kerry altoona, pennsylvania. -- john, altoona, pennsylvania. are you with us, john? caller: hi. my question is, as far as coming up on the anniversary, with bin laden being right underneath pakistan's military base, what they have to say about not knowing he was there? guest: it is a head-scratcher.
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it would be the equivalent of living not too far from the west point in new york, on our own military academy. it raises questions about pakistan's involvement with al qaeda, and similar groups, but of course pakistan is pursuing its own interests as well, and knowing the united states will not be in afghanistan forever, and it is planning for the long term in its constants -- constant struggle with india, so it has aligned itself with folks that we of considered bad actors, and perhaps al qaida among them, though it is hard to say from open source material. i did not think it is irrational from the viewpoint of pakistan. host: what are you most watching over the next couple of months? how do you pay attention to the chatter?
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what warning signs are of concern to you? guest: i am looking to see how things develop in yemen in particular. al qaida is trying something new in the southern part of yemen, and i am looking to see how it develops and resonates with the global moment that supports al qaida. host: william mccants, analyst for the chapter for naval analysis. -- center for naval analysis. you can read his peace in "foreign affairs." thank you for joining us. coming up next, elana schor of "environment and energy daily call call on the obama administration's energy issues, and then later mark thompson of "time magazine" joins us. first this news update from c- span radio. >> more on the death of osama
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bin laden from the former national counter-terrorism head, saying the al qaeda leader wanted to see president obama and general david petraeus assassinated. he said the terrorist leader dreamed of another large scale, 9/11-type attack. he was in the war room with president obama and others as they monitored the execution. a report says agents will get the ethics training from johns hopkins university following the secret service scandal in colombia. 100 agents will take part in two days of training. it was previously scheduled for 20 agents. meanwhile, an independent government investigating team is
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launching its own review of the secret service prostitution scandal the inspector general -- scandal. the inspector general's office informed the prosecution that they are stepping in after having received calls from congress, and in a statement the ranking republican member on the homeland security committee says she is pleased with the latest announcement. those are some of the latest headlines and c-span radio. >> between 1971 and 1973, president richard nixon secretly recorded thousands of phone calls and meetings. >> i have been in conversations, but do not give them the big one. >> every saturday on c-span radial hear more of the nixon tapes -- c-span radio, hear more
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of the nixon tapes. this week, conversations with gerald ford, ronald reagan, and george h. w. bush. >> i have seemed to have earned a certain place where people will listen to me, and i have always. about the country, and "the greatest -- . about the country, and "the greatest generation gave me the opportunity. i thought i not -- and not off to squander that, and should step up as a journalist, but also as a father and grandfather, that if i see things that i should try to write this dialogue. >> in "the time of our lives" tom brokaw urges americans to
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redefine the american dream. sunday, your questions for the former anchor of the nbc nightly news. sunday, noon eastern, on c-span 's "booktv." >> "washington journal" continues. host: elana schor is a reporter with "environment and energy daily." a series of speeches link the obama administration's environmental policy with the economy. [video clip] >> the president wants to move into a new era. some of you may have seen earlier this week president obama was on "late night with
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jimmy fallon. he was asked if there was one thing you could make happen that would change the world by snapping your fingers what would it be, and the president's answer was in short clean energy. he said we must invest in the clean energy sources of tomorrow. he mentioned solar and wind. he talked about supporting electric cars and new sources of energy. he said we need to do those things because it will help us to deal with climate change and it is good for our economy. host: elana schor, talk to us about this strategy the obama administration is taking? guest: in a way, this as going
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-- this has been going on offense, as the republican administration has blamed the energy agenda for what has happened to consumers. this is the administration saying we've created jobs with stimulus money, and we intend to review fuel efficiency standards, we stand by what we have done, and we want to talk about it. otherwise, they are on defense. politically, it is a good choice. host: as we mentioned thinks the president is eager to see in advance, electric cars, things like that, what has the stimulus done in some of these programs? guest: electric cars got quite a bit of money in the initial wave of grants. most of those headed time horizon, and because the stimulus became law in 2009, that money has largely gone
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through the system, which turns out to be a good thing for the administration because once republicans took over the house, they put the brakes on some of these things. host: what about biofuels next administrator jackson talks about biofuel? guest: the administration is prioritizing biofuel. a lot of support for ethanol expired at the end of last year. the administration is focusing on more plant-based biofuel, which we have a mandate for to be produced, but there is nowhere to make it. the administration wants to make sure we meet targets by building
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a real plants. host: elana schor is a reporter with "environment and energy daily." if you would like to join the conversation about the obama administration's porsche that their energy policy is boosting the economy, here is the -- here are the numbers to call. a chill this is a story that you wrote -- host: this is a story that you wrote -- host: tell us what they're doing, what is their agenda?
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guest: this is a canny move meant by the group because solyndra has become a household name, the group has gotten -- that had a guarantee from the administration, and later went bankrupt. republicans have spent more than a year looking for improprieties, and have not found smoking guns, but they did find which was fairly embarrassing, was serious warning signs appeared as the investigation peters out, what americans for prosperity is trying to do is point out that many other organizations had similar fishyness going on. some of the examples they cite are questionably truthful in the
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traditional use of the phrase. that could haunt americans for prosperity, but it does create a sense of suspicion. it called let's look at two of these -- host: let's take a look at two of these ads. [video clip] washington promised to create american jobs if we passed their stimulus, but that is not what happened. billions of energy -- money spent on green energy went to foreign countries. the obama administration admitted the truth. $1.2 billion went to a solar company building a plant in mexico. >> on tax day, ask yourself how exactly does president obama spend your tax dollars? billions of dollars in green energy companies like solyndra that went bankrupt, sent jobs
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overseas, or risky from the start. we have heard that a federal agency spent on a lavish conference. criminal charges are expected. in an ironic twist, the head of the agency could not make it to las vegas because she had meetings planned at solyndra, a different kind of gamble. guest: the second one that based -- is based on a report that is the iranians. -- erroneous. the head was not at solyndra. the first and uses language effectively and cleverly. $1.20 billion went to mexico. they are separate projects. but $1.2 billion went to a
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california plant, but the same company is building a plant in mexico. host: haymarket, virginia. steve, republican. caller: the first thing the democrats should have done is repeal the laws of physics. they have run into them in a hard way. green will not -- green energy will not be effected until we creative power grid which means we need more oil. there is an organization that can take high-level nuclear waste, about the size of a grapefruit and produce nuclear power next to hospitals that will produce enough electricity for 25,000 homes for 20 years.
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this has been proven. all we have to do is make it more palatable for the public. guest: well, you have a point about smart grid. the obama administration has acknowledged that a lot of spending and green power cannot reduce rates and have a nationwide effect until the grade is modified, and we are talking about hundreds of billions of dollars that needs to be spent, and relatively the obama administration just inches towards that goal. in the current environment, it is not likely they will have much more money for that. host: democratic caller. rick, ohio. caller: i want to know if anyone found out about the sweetheart deal that dick cheney in the oil companies made when they were in
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office and tell the american people got screwed? it could do you want to elaborate? -- host: do you want to elaborate? except we lost rich. guest: there was great reporting done on that. it is nothing that was operative in the second term of the bush administration. host: ray, independent color. i think we lost rate. -- caller. i think we lost him. minnesota. caller: what was thought of , and how long will the take before we get to
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running out of oil and needing these alternative energies and it is not there? i think the republicans need to wake up. guest: it is interesting that you mentioned how soon we will run out of oil because that has become a major political debate. the president has given speeches that saying the united states supports only 2% of the world's known reserves, and any kind of calculation can be viewed in many different ways. republicans say that is a gross distortion of the fact, as they count known and recoverable reserves a lot of what we know as unconventional fuel the needs to be extracted with high-tech methods, and they say the number is more than quadruple what the president says it is. there does not seem to be
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bipartisan agreement on how much oil we have. host: bill. utah. independent line. caller: i would like to just make a common -- a comment. we have a serious problem with alternative energy that the administration has not addressed, and that is the grid. the electrical grid will not handle the alternative energy. what needs to be done is the development of a smart grid. within the last year, pacific elektra has shut down wind farm twice because the grid will not handle the energy that is produced by wind farms and also the hydroelectric energy.
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host: the elana schor? guest: he is bringing out the same smart grid point i made to a caller earlier. one solution gaining momentum is a grid that mixes natural gas what alternative technology, with power plants in the works that will allow natural gas to kick in and keep power going when the weather changes and produced a dependable base load. baby steps, as i mentioned the smart credit is a long way off. host: elana schor is a reporter for "environment and energy daily," when we are talking about the obama administration's message that energy policy is spurring the economy. our guest says the obama administration is going on the
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offense at this point. as you watch congress in their home districts and in washington, who is winning the message war? who is taking advantage of gasoline prices, which we do see going down a little bit now, and other consumer issues to get the message across on which side has the solution for energy and economic policy issues? guest: it is tough to tell right now, and that is why energy will be policy-wise, the most important issue. voters trust mitt romney more on the economy, but barack obama gets a lot of trust on national security, but energy seems to me that-and-neck. -- neck-and-neck. president obama is trying to sell the we are reaching record production in oil, and in
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congress, his ideas are stalled, and that hurts the administration that they cannot push through and accomplishment. host: jim garde republican. cincinnati, ohio. caller: higher understand that when the government -- i understand that when the government makes loans to companies like solyndra, it just happens by coincidence that investors are good buddies of president obama. i'm wondering how secretary steven chu can get around the law and how he can not be prosecuted and held accountable? guest: you cut to the heart of the republican investigation. in the energy policy after 2005
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there is legislation that would put taxpayers first in line to be repaid. solyndra's loan, according to documents that republicans have dug up, was structured to allow others to jump ahead in line, and that has been said to be necessary because in new money would not be available if they could not leap ahead of taxpayers. we still do not know whether and how much any of these stakeholders will be repaid because the solyndra bankruptcy is still in court, secretary steven chu did not break the letter of a lot. he might have broken the. to of the law, and as a result of this -- the spirit of the law, and as a result we might see a dentist to change this law again. -- an impetus to change this law again.
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host: tell us about the story, and how significant it is that he is stepping down? guest: this is significant, because the regional administrator handles the bulk of oil in texas. these remarks are couple of years old. this is a stark illustration of what we see as regulatory overreach. host: what did he say that would sell inflammatory? guest: it sounds like he is talking about all oil and gas companies. what he is talking about is the lawbreaking ones, we want to make them the public spectacle
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of punishing them. when it is put that way, it is tough to object to punishing bad apples, but the use of the religious language caused a firestorm, and the epa has enough political firestorm set the moment. it is a signal that the obama administration does not want more heat on this agency. host: bob, independent, miami, florida. caller: if we drill for oil in the united states, more oil that we produce here, why does everything -- everyone think we will reduce the price of gasoline when the company's plans billions to get it, and they will sell it on the open market at the market price? the more we drove, it will not
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change the price of oil -- drilled, it will not change the price of oil. guest: that is a great point, and a lot of economists agree with you, claiming that republicans porsche to drill more here will the necessarily reduce the price of oil. that is a new ones to look that is both -- that is frankly lost because both parties have no interest in convincing the public that congress can help with guess prices, but the truth is closer to what the caller said, oil price is set in the global market. drilling has economic benefit, but it is not guaranteed to have much of any effect on short-term gas prices at all. a nonpartisan organization said if we extend drilling to the extent republicans want, it
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would result in a 3 cent decrease by 2020. host: donald. dallas, texas. independent line. caller: good morning. i would like to ask and point out that every time obama goes, and desks to hear from we the people, the top question has been ignored by the president and continues to be ignored we get -- with regard to the energy debate, and that is why are we not using cannabis as a fuel source next -- source? that could make us energy independent. host: the caller talks about using cannabis. what about alternative fuels like that?
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is anyone considering that? guest: i did not believe so. that is not a major part of the discussion. we have not reckoned with a lot of libertarians but once you legalize it, so it is said not a high priority issue. host: houston, texas. caller: everyone complains about the payments from the government to the oil companies, but they failed to tell everyone that sometimes it costs oil companies hundreds of millions of dollars just to get a permit, and sometimes they can take off to 10 years to get, and no one talks about the cost to oil companies. in texas, waste management runs
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their trucks on the same guest they get from trash they picked up. this country has a problem with trash. why are we not taking our trash and making more methane gas? guest: that is a great question. methane-powered vehicles are in the mix for heavy-duty fleets, like the trucks you referred to, but probably what is ahead of that is natural gas because it is so cheap in the country, below the benchmark of two dollars per cubic foot. your point about permanence is well taken. a lot of oil companies have been making headway in may -- convincing lawmakers that this web of permits need to be more effectively managed so they're
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not stuck in a bureaucratic hell, when they're trying to explore, but with a divided government, it is not likely we will see major reform this year. host: with republicans, democrats, debating natural gas, who are the leaders you are watching when it comes to exploring for natural gas? guest: i think it person to watch is bob casey, the senior democratic senator from pennsylvania. he is up for reelection, but he is not run as strong, and he has some speed to step ahead, because it is where a lot of hydraulic fracturing it is helping. casey said he plans to introduce legislation that would create state-based programs for natural gas vehicles.
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why it is a good and potentially game changing id -- idea is because there is a backlash about doing this federal budget federally, because they could turn to the next big energy subsidy, and it makes them hypocritical. republicans are somewhat split, and the federalist approach to let states create these cars could be a winner. host: has he taken heat politically because of the controversy- fracking has caused in part of his state? guest: he has walked that line effectively. he has not come out and say that hydraulic fracturing is great. it is creating a lot of jobs.
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host: elana schor is a reporter with "environment and energy daily," and focuses on policies in energy and press the gas. in her past, she reported on congress. let's get to mike, germantown, maryland. caller: thank you for the opportunity to speak. the caller sapporo my thunder. -- stole my thunder. hemp is the number one energy source, but it is illegal to grow. guest: there you go. there is clearly strong, grassroot support, but unfortunately there is a lot of organizing yet to be done in washington to create a groundswell of support for
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discussing this, but that is no reason why not to keep trying. host: saint louis. democratic caller. caller: the cost you $100,000 on up. if you make $50,000, for geget it. he deals in the quality that he puts out. businesses could do better if they go by quantity. you can have both. you have to be willing to do it. guest: the price of electric cars has been a tool for the opposition, and that is somewhat
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the case. as more companies get support, the more of a market and the higher the gasoline prices go, the cheaper there will eventually get. host: we have a comment on twitter. delta to land their own oil refinery. it would allow it to reduce their fuel expenses. guest: this is a fascinating story and this is a political story. this goes back to pennsylvania. senator casey and the republicans were pleading for buyers to come forward. two refineries are about to
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close. "we cannot make any money on this because of the epa. the new regulations have forced us to put them on the marke t." there are two more refineries that still need buyers. host: wayne is up next. caller: we cannot live without oil and gas. we'll never be able to live without oil and gas. obama wants to destroy the industry because of electric cars. you run out of energy. what would you do for electricity? i would not want to drive one of
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them. it is ridiculous what obama and the epa are doing. i hope obama doesn't get reelected. host: it has been over a year since the bp blowout. how're things going? caller: oil and gas have been here for years. we have a town called oil city. drilling is the most important thing going on. obama stopped jobs. he stopped people from working. this is nothing but a joke. the american people have stopped buying it. that's all i have to say.
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host: that was two years ago that it happened. what has been the political ramifications for members of congress and for the obama administration? guest: the sentiment that wayne has been expressing -- it has been two years. the moratorium is still having political repercussions. people are upset that the moratorium continues to reverberate and to push oil companies out of business where they might be opening wells. the obama administration said we needed to have that moratorium. when you crunch the numbers, the increases in production are having -- are happening on
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private land. the political debate is so fiery. host: chris in naples, florida. caller: my father was an executive for esso before it was exxon mobile. when the crisis came in the thousandshey capped and thousands of oil-producing sources across louisiana, texas, oklahoma, and other oil- producing states. they could buy the opec oil for cheaper and sit on the reserves. we still have not opened up
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these reserves, unbeknownst to the american people and the stockholders. we have a lot of loyal -- oil that is in our grounds. we don't have to drill offshore and in danger -- and endanger the environment. this is oil that nobody knows about. does anyone else know about this? familiar witht what the caller is talking about. we do have hundreds of millions of barrels which is publicly hidden in america. we have not yet to hear about
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whether the obama administration plans to release the oil from this reserve. jakarta says the administration continues to keep every option on the table -- jay carney says the administration continues to keep every option on the table. it could yet happen. host: diana in grand junction, colorado. caller: good morning. we have flex fuel. i love it. we just recently made a trip across texas and does not seem to be a lot of flex fuel stations around. will anything come up to start building more stations that
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carry flex fuel? is flex feel subsidized by the government? there is a 60-cent difference per gallon. host: tell us what it is li ke. caller: i bought a $15,000 pontiac. it is great to go over the mountains. the mileage seems about the same. it is a lot less expensive. i wish there were more stations that carried flex fuel. guest: that is great to hear that these cars are becoming more popular. it does tend to vary by state.
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i would keep an eye out for this package of tax credits called the extenders. they are very small on their own but large together. this includes credits for states to build more stations. a lot of members of congress say they will not leave town without extending the tax credits. host: tell us what flex feel uel is. guest: cars that derive more fuel efficiency. it is not necessarily less expensive. it is not an electric car. it can run on conventional gasoline and on other means. host: we have a question on
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twitter. give us a sense of the leases that are pending or being held up or that oil companies say they would like to develop this resource but they cannot. guest: there are two categories of those. you described one. there are leases but have not been drilled on. host: democrats have raised concerns and say if you want more permits, use the ones you got. guest: there are all manner of testing before installing a rig. there is no incentive to do that. the amount of oil we would extract is not worth the capital investment. democrats are forcing them to
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act on properties. that is almost a more political volatile category, the second category. host: friend from georgia -- frank from georgia, welcome. caller: i wanted to make a comment. she went on to report what he said but she said what he meant. if she had listened to what he said, it goes along with what he meant. when the romans when into the village, they took the first five men they saw and crucify them so the rest of the villagers knew that they meant business. he did not say they got the first five bad guys are the first five rebels or the first
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five people that were causing an uprising. it was the first five villagers they found. she said they meant the oil companies that had broken the law. that is not true. ers.eant the oil-producing ear host: thank you for your comment. let's take a look at "the washington post" reporting on this.
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guest: yeah. i would have to take issue with the collar'aller's reading. i am talking about noncompliant entities here. going a little further that might otherwise -- yes. he was talking about noncompliant entities. host: big oil companies -- big oil country. guest: it relates back to fracking. republicans were concerned. there is a company that is
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fracking in texas. the epa is doing more testing. the company is pushing back. this is a fracking scandal. caller: i have a question. the obama administration's credit. the truth of the matter is is that private oil drilling has increased production whereas public oil and drilling has decreased. i will take the comment off air. guest: the obama administration is saying oil and gas production is up. that is technically true.
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public federal lands is down by about 11%. state health plans where the increase is happening -- state lands is where the increases happening. the president is saying, i'm doing as much as i can. host: elana schor a reporter with "environment & energy daily" and focuses on the politics of oil and gas. thank you so much for joining us. next we'll speak with "time" magazine's mark thompson. mental health care. >> 9:15 eastern time. a new ad is targeting mitt
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romney's jobs record and finances. it accuses the governor for keeping money in foreign bank accounts. mitt romney is calling on president obama to not let the killing of osama bin laden become a politically divisive event. mr. romney went on to say that president obama can take credit for bin laden's downfall but it was disappointing for the president to try to make this a political item by suggesting he would not have ordered the raid. "i of course would have." the president suggested the former governor has waffled on whether he would have taken out bin laden. "taking me out on that basis is inappropriate.'
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mitt romney is edging closer to commitments from his former rival. newt gingrich plans to endorse mitt romney this week. newt gingrich and rick santorum want assurances that mitt romney will deliver for them. ousted leadertly plans to remain active in politics. she was ousted as party leader several years ago by a former defense minister. she is to formally submit her resignation letter today. the prime minister is expected to declare early elections soon. more violence in afghanistan. the taliban leaders were killed after they open fire on troops in the country's east.
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the soldiers killed innocent people who were unarmed. bombings inroadside borman the province. night raids are controversial in afghanistan and they now must be led by afghan forces. the use of drones was the focus yesterday. today a police chief says he has no idea why his department has two unmanned aerial vehicles capable of aerial surveillance. he learned two weeks ago about the vehicles. with anes were blockought federal grant. >> "washington journal"
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continues. host: mark thompson is the national security correspondent for "time" magazine. the department of veterans affairs has been overstating how quickly they see veterans with mental health care issues. this raises concerns about how fast they are getting appointments. guest: the problem is pretty simple. everybody is using a different yardstick. the va was measured help it would take them to see you, cannot help a patient would have to wait to get his or her first appointment. "95% of our veterans need to be seen." it was closer to half of that.
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it is a function of staffing at how the wars have changed. host: let's look at some of the stats on this. guest: right. all these numbers show the fundamental problem. we have a flood of returning tvets. world war ii -- on eie in three wounded veterans died.
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this war -- afghanistan and iraq -- eight wounded, only one died. this is basically acted like a tsunami for the v.a. and they are still trying to catch up, even though their budget has doubled. host: here are the numbers to call -- democrats -- 202-737-0001. republicans -- 202-737-0002. independents -- 202-628-0205. and a special line -- 202-628- 0184. he looked at the numbers and the numbers get to a broader point. the v.a. is perhaps not set up
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to deal with what is happening with the current climate of a veterans coming home. what are they looking for and what do they need? guest: people do not know what they need, both the patients and the doctors. the signature wound of this war is traumatic brain injuries. our military is so good that the bad guys can only fight it with suicide bombers. it takes your brain and rattles it around inside your skull. the problems it causes are not immediate apparent. come back in a year or two shares or three years and you could have cte. this is something that leads to dementia and suicide and
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depression. these are the issues that the v.a. is only now beginning to get its arms around. this is a bigger category of wound. host: there was a hearing last week looking at the inspector general report. [video clip] >> v.a. is finding ways to make the data look like they are complying. v.a. can and much do much better. last week they announced the addition of 6000 mental-health providers and an increase in staffing levels at the veterans crisis line. the hard work remains in front of us at a time when veterans are dying by suicide at alarming rate. the sooner a veteran can get it
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appointment, the more likely they are to follow through with care. we cannot afford them to lead them to discourage. we must be giving veterans there must appointment. we must be sure there are enough resources to not delay treatment because their schedules are to o full. host: she talked about new positions being created. there are a lot of vacancies. guest: as the v.a. will tell you, there is a great demand for psychiatrists and licensed social workers. there's not enough in the military or veterans world. the experts when out to four
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different v.a. posts and found there were vacancies they could not fill. there are 20,000 mental-health workers working for the v.a. there will increase that by 1900 . .hat is a big step - head of theo get a head o report. the v.a. is still playing catch- up. nearly all v.a. people do good work. host: james from georgia, republican line. caller: good morning. i am a veteran myself.
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when we go to the va.a. hospital, we have to deal with people from other countries. the v.a. are hiring more people from india and other countries. guest: that is a good point. i was in kentucky at fort campbell and her that same complaint from soldiers. america is not generating enough doctors. you get people from its east asia. that's a real concern. those folks do not have the grasp of american military culture that you might get from my native-born american. i do not know what to do about it. host: what about a mn
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american understanding american culture? guest: that person will understand gomer pyle and some of the slang. host: mark thompson runs the battle-land blog at time's website. felix is a vet. caller: yes. i'm calling in regard -- something needs to be done for the veterans coming back. i am a veteran myself. it doesn't take more than maybe 20 or 30 in one session in the group class and that's all it takes. something needs to be done in terms of the veteran.
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these are things that need to be addressed to congress. if the veteran is not able to get the hell, they will have problems -- if the veteran is not able to get the help, they will have problems. host: do you want to have a group class? group class is better than a one-on-one. the same scenario can be addressed from a to z. host: thank you for calling. guest: thank you for your service, felix. st is.ique each case of pt
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there wasn't enough one-on-one counseling going and to much of a push to push people into group sessions. scaring the issue makes it easier to deal with -- shairing the issues makes it easier to deal with. host: adam from arizona. caller: good morning. i have a couple of questions for you. are there a volunteer roles? does the v.a. take volunteers? is there any kind of triage? they can bring in these soldiers
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but they could help the v.a. and help with the medical needs and help leveling out what kind of treatment they need. i'm interested in the voluntary aspect. there should be more of a cry to help these men and women coming back to get real associated with our society. guest: adam, one of the great groups that has come up post 9/11 is this given ou hour. it is a nonprofit group that takes licensed mental health professionals and mary's them up with vets who need help beyond what they can get at their v.a. i encourage you to check out their website. you have to have some
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guidelines and procedures to be sure that what they do is good. give an hour is a group that is filling a gap in that regard. host: senator patty murray and scott brown of massachusetts heard from an iraq war vet. he worked in manchester, new hampshire. he wound up leaving that job and had some criticism about the culture at large. [video clip] >>the v.a. lacks the methodology about what is needed in a facility. the head of the mental health service stated the need was quantity rather than quality. she said have contact with as many veterans as we can, even if
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we are not able to help them. a growing number of veterans, far more than we can h andle. as a results, veterans fell through the crack. guest: he was denigrated by his boss for being a veteran himself. he had 14 years in the navy. the postit's like office or military. there are going to be bad apples in any institution of that size. it is very much of a numbers- driven thing as we talk about quantity as opposed to quality. they do have to see a lot of
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people and sometimes people to get the short end of the state. mental health care is very expensive. the budget is still inadequate. next. joe is i caller: do you know anything about the v.a. disability raiders? atlanta, georgia, i filed my claim. i have had back surgery. the v.a. does not recognize that. like doctors keep writing letters to them -- my doctors keep writing letters to them. guest: the v.a. does subcontract
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out to private concerns to do some of these ratings. they are very controversial. i have heard of bonuses but they tend to go on quantity, not on the nile. that would ignite a fire storm fairly. i do think that the v.a. has an immense backlog, about a million claims. we had a going diary of how long it took one person and it took over a year before his claim was adjudicated. it is a painstaking process. it does take a lot of time. host: how important is it that
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veterans can reach out when they have a problem and get help right away? we're talking 24 hours or 48 hours when the first place a call. guest: 1-800-278-talk. that is the veterans crisis number. you may not be seen by a v.a. person, maybe a local mental health expert. they were doing pretty well at that. host: 18 veterans die by suicide daily. much larger percentage than a service members among the general population at large. guest: i mean -- if we could
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figure out the suicide conundrum, it would have been figured out a long time ago. if you suffer from ptsd, you're up to more than six times more likely to take your own life. that is a real issue along with the cte issue. we need to be cognizant of the fact that the v.a. can do everything for an individual and it may not work. i did a story from a fellow from wisconsin who killed himself and his children and his wife and family dog. he had been seen 10 times by the v.a. the v.a. was working hard and
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they were devastated. there are certain mysteries of the mont that are beyond the ability of the v.a. to figure out. host: george on the democrat's line. caller: i am a veteran. i have it mental-health appointment every two and a half months. i have an annual physical. host: are you still with us? do you want those appointments 1/2 months?f mont caller: they are a maintenance check in. a problem is the fact that veterans get started on mental health care and oftentimes
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failed to keep their appointments. host: we will get a response from mark thompson. guest: that is true. it is frustrating for the professionals when folks did not show up. it is like a restaurant when reservations are made and people do not show up. that is an issue and that is troubling. i often speak to vets. some vets are more motivated to get the treatment or try to get well or to make sure they are getting all the benefits that they are due and they tend to do better than those with a more lackadaisical approach. caller: hi. my name is alan. i'm a marine corps veteran.
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i was wounded. i and a purple heart veteran -- i am a purple heart veteran. i went to work as a social worker. i have been out of the service about 40 years. i started having nightmares once in awhile. i started drinking more than i should have. one of the doctors was treating me suggested -- he noticed that i was getting depressed and stuff and you ask me, how are you doing today? so he told me i should go to this group session about
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vets. i got agitated and disappointed in the first group session. in the group sessions, i felt that a lot of its was not exactly what they went through. it was almost like a script or something. anyway, two weeks after started going to that, the counselor, the social worker beensted i needed -- i've seeing him once a week. host: has it helped/ ? guest: yes. i have been seeing and once a week for the last eight years -- caller: i have been seeing him
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once a week for the last eight years. i do not drink. sometimes i dream about the combat situations that i was in. my wife is also helpful. i wanted to comment and say that in the charleston area, the social workers to a great job. it might take a long time to figure out what is wrong with you. i was helped -- 30 years without knowing i had posttraumatic stress. i thought it was just me. host: how much are older veterans serving as role models? lot.: they help al
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this gets to the uniqueness of ptsd. some folks can thrive in that environment and other folks can't. the v.a. tries to figure out what works best for each veteran. the warrior transition units -- the folks that are really with guys londare lumped in that broke their legs. it is tough to tease out the difference. the country owes the veterans the benefit of the dow. look at some of the numbers.
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guest: the numbers are staggering. this should not be a surprise because of the way the wars are flawought. you're likely to be affected by the ied. everybody over there has some exposure in combat. it is not like it was several wars ago where there were true front lines. it is not surprising that those numbers are big. how many of those are seeds of trouble down the road? that's the trouble. we do not know -- all of our combat forces will be home from afghanistan by 2014.
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the challenge of dealing with the mental wreckage from these wars will be just be getting. host: mark. caller: our son joined the marines in october of 2001. he came back on his first tour. we went out to eat. it is heartbreaking. you realize he will never be the same. after three tours -- he had roadside bombs go off on him. he was a guy that would not hurt a flea. even now, though, he has pulled himself up by the bootstraps. imagine when they reach out for help -- you mentioned when they
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reach out for help. some of these guys never reach out for help. i do not know how that works. guest: there are ways that family members can reach out. rand did a study several years ago that said more than half of the veterans who come back with symptoms of ptsd or major depression never get help. you have the notion of a stigma, "i will never be as much of a soldier. that will hurt my career." we look at the tours that they are going through. if you have trouble, you will tend to know that after a tour or two.
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if you do three, four, five tours, you must like what you are doing. there's a sense that the folks who go back repeatedly for some reason have some protection against ptsd. the v.a. and others are trying to figure out what this subset has that the earlier subset the kid pt down with ptsd -- what separates those groups? it would be a great learning tool to say this person should not go. host: angel in new jersey. caller: i am happy you have this topic on today.
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i did two tours in iraq. i have ptsd but i did not take any treatment because i thought other guys were more important who lost legs and arms and did not take any treatment. the u.s. army has the program that is fantastic for army, that is coming out of the iraq situation. i'm going to teh v.a. and getting help. i have to give kudos to the v.a. guest: thank you for your service. were not dealts with the same way as a physical wounds. mental wounds of war are real
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wounds. it gets to what we're getting at. there is a growing realization that this is not all in your mind. it is a wounding of the mind and something that needs to be treated. if you elect not to seek help -- ptsd is a terrible wound and it is treatable and can be made better for medication, therapy, and is something i would encourage all veterans to see k out. host: we have a question on twitter.
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guest: they are flops sides to the same coin. mental health clinics were separate outposts. if you when there, everybody would know. they thought it would be smarter if it would be part of the hospital. in some ways you could say that encourages a stigma. i think it is a half step to improved recognition and treatment of how to get the soldiers and veterans the help they need. host: mark thompson from v.a. battleland blog.e it dispatches from yourself as well as other contributors. guest: we do not right for
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defense contractors or politicians. we write for troops or taxpayers. host: he is a pulitzer prize winner for public-service journalism. it was a series about a design flaw in helicopters. the problem fester for more than a decade. crashes killed more than 250 servicemen. he has been with "time" magazine. frank from new jersey. caller: i am a vietnam veteran and rated 100% for ptsd. it has been 20 years since i've been treated for it. ptsd, some of the facets of
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our survivor guilt. it seems you get caught in an area where you take back to where the good times were and you get locked into that area because it helps protect you from the bad times that you are seeing. it stunts your maturity and your growth and your ability to move forward. i was in the 101st. our motto was "drive on." you feel embarrassed that you might have this inadequacy and you do not want to reveal it because you are always told to drive on. a lot of the patients in the -- the v.a. is taking
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payments for veterans. the organizations are digging into each other's treasury. mostly it is the v.a. digging into the medicare treasury. illed.re is b taxpayer, it a doesn't make much difference which pocket the money is coming from. congratulations to you for can t win your treatment -- for continuing your treatment. some stop their treatment and that leads to some bad outcomes. it is important for the veterans
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to continue their treatment if that is what the specialist recommends. when you make an appointment at can thev.a., it is when v.a. see you next. advice i cannot make the firsttwo -- if i say i cannot make the first two appointments, the average wait is just too long. host: you dug into the problem of staffing. guest: congress has been general to active military and to veterans. since 2004, the budget was $60 billion. that rate of growth is tough to
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spend a smartly. i think the v.a. is growing as fast as it can grow and making sure those dollars are spent well. host: the v.a. breatheess a sigh of relief last week, according to this article in "the washington post." guest: that is the sequester mechanism that will come to pass on january 2, or may not come to pass on january 2. they can be exempted by order of the president. the v.a. was exempted at last week. the white house doesn't want to
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cheat the veterans or the active-duty military while we are still at war. there is a fair amount consideration to building wars from those accounts to protect them from the fact that the white house and congress cannot get their act together. host: democratic caller from florida. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. kind of a complaint, comment, and the question. i am not a vet. had some come back. they deal with all the situations where speaking of right now. the complaint is -- delays since the inception. you had less bodies coming back in the older wars. now we have more bodies coming
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back. we label the mental health issue. it is spread out outside of the vets themselves. personnel is the issue. i have a cousin that makes the effort to go there. shuttle service -- they have not called if the shuttle service is shutdown. every v.a. it's a little difference. i'm calling from orlando. where is the incentive? you talk about a state like florida. there are similar behavioral issues and you have all these
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clinics and mental health professionals everywhere. why not in the v.a.? guest: that is a good question, carlos. if you have a soldier and you have a ptsd issue, there were 100 places to go get help. it was baffling to figure out where to go. there has to be a way to streamline the process. right now there has been so much a money pumped into the v.a. and the military to deal with these issues. we need a super highway perhaps. we do not have a short menu of options like a fast-food stand for an ailing vet to get the
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help they need. it has been 10 years. you talk about the shuttle's that do not show up. there are stories like that everywhere in v.a. land. they have become white noise. everybody can point to that and say, it is terrible. this is such a huge population, 20 million people. caller: this is a great subject. i am a vet in the 1980's. i tried to commit suicide and i am bipolar. people should be commended.
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people think of a temporary problem -- this is hard to correct. are there studies on these people who go back on tours? are they hooked to adrenaline? at how that affects the chemicals on their system? you were hitting it on the education. it is hard to help some but that does not want help. people do not know that site medication takes two to four weeks to start working. there are so many medications. i like to stick with the older medications that have been approved. i take medication for m

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