tv Washington Journal CSPAN December 28, 2013 7:00am-10:01am EST
examiner journalist philip klein. "washington journal" is next. ♪ unemploymentgency insurance, immediately cutting off jobless benefits for 1.3 million workers that have been unemployed for longer than 26 weeks. if the sudden change starts an intense battle when lawmakers return to washington in january. resident obama has called on congress to act swiftly on the temporary extension of etiquette -- of benefits. isrop in unemployment rate -- morning,ng news this
federal judge rules this week that the national security agency program that collect the records of millions of americans of phone calls is lawful. says it does not violate america's privacy rights. it is december 28, the morning and welcome to "washington journal." our topic to kick things off is the end of that extended unemployment benefits. will congress renew them when lawmakers return in january? we want to hear from you. for republicans, the number is 202-585-3881. 585-3880.rats, 202- you can also find us online a on twitter -- find us online on twitter, @cspanwj. and e-mail, we're at journal@c- span.org.
the hill -- is a reporter from "the hill." down for us, how do we get to the end of the benefits. what gets us to the brink the echo -- the brink? every pretty probably remember the fiscal cliff bill from the holidays of last year. who had been out of work for at least six months or more had gotten a nut or extension to the end of this year. congress needed to go ahead and .eauthorize this program advocates want another year and they fail to do it before they left for the holidays. a report states that senator jack reed of rhode island announced thursday he he willounce its --
reduce a three-month extension. and that she will introduce a three-month extension. he will introduce a three- month extension. with: he is backing it up senator reid. we haven't heard much from any republicans outside of a couple who said they oppose it. say theybeginning to want to have these benefits paid for. they're costing about $26 billion per year. they are ok with the dam as long as the cost is covered. speaker john boehner said before the holidays that he would consider a plan from the white house from democrats but never saw one that he thought would be -- he a strong extension
said before hand he did not see anything he put before the house. he will have to see if they can get a short-term extension done with the get back. the number we are hearing is 1.3 billion -- 1.3 million, the people of -- the number of people who will lose benefits today. guest: people end up going into that long -- that long-term area. most states do provide 26 weeks of benefits. most states have cut that down to 19 weeks. people who were out of work for six months certainly could have trouble still finding jobs into the new year. it could be up to in other two or 3 million people next year. granted we are seeing some are improvements in the labor market. we are seeing some people who are losing their jobs now are getting back to the job market a
little back -- a little faster. there is certainly a cycle that has not changed at all during the downturn and the subsequent recovery that people who have been out of work long-term are struggling to find jobs. that is 37% of the unemployed. level,s maintained that somewhere between 37 and 40% for the past few years. it is definitely a tough hurdle for these folks to scale. we keep hearing this talk about just how crowded the legislative calendar is for lawmakers when they return in january. how likely is it that extending these benefits even temporarily will be a priority of lawmakers. harry reid said it is his first order of business when they return, which is why we are seeing a lot of activity over the holidays. they kind of set this up for when they return in about a week and a half.
whether we see enough support for it that is another story. they would like the benefits to be retroactive. people will not have to go without this lifetime -- this lifeline for longer than a week or two. are you hearing from president obama? what has he said on this issue? guest: he is a firm backer. hawaii andcation in did phone senator heller and senator jack reed, who were kind of leading the charge on this bill, and talked to them about important -- how important he thinks it is. they are backing this three months authorization to get the ball rolling a little bit in hopes of being able to talk about this issue a little bit
more, maybe talk about how to offset the cost of it. it will cost about $6 billion for three months. certainly a major push happening right now. host: thank you so much for joining us. to talk about this debate over unemployment benefits, the liberal group "americans united for change" put out an ad tying this aggression will -- to these benefits. [video clip] >> republicans in congress made sure of that, but getting billions in taxpayer giveaways. stripped 1.3 million americans of jobless benefits to the folks who want work but cannot find a job. to the 1.3 million americans losing benefits, merry christmas. of it is wrong to leave more than a million americans behind.
you can e-mail us at journal@c- span.org. our first call comes from chattanooga, tennessee. john is on the line for democrats. caller: how are you doing? i am all in favor of getting these benefits out there. what peopleemember are having these problems in the first place, and that is because of wall street a couple of years wrecking the economy. now that republicans who are up wall street are trying to filibuster people from getting benefits and the families, it is not right, it is not moral.
i asked my senator to stop this filibuster just to get people basic benefits. once he gets money in the economy people can buy food and help their families. of course all the republican they should be in favor of necessities for people who are out of work through no fault of their own. our guest earlier mentioned president obama's rollout. a tweet -- senate lawmakers are proposing that temporary extension expected to hit the senate next year. our next call is from alabama on our line for independents. caller: thank you for c-span. as i woke up this morning i had
been in pretty good holiday spirits until yesterday. when i think about this economy , $15 and the billions billion have been taken out of our economy. is this a classic example of what bipartisanship is? republicans and democrats got together and the president will not supported on two occasions. [indiscernible] now they're trying to close the door. i am totally disturbed this morning of this bipartisanship
read that is why i am an independent. both of these people -- it is a shame so many americans have to be under the gun. another tweet. our next call comes from jenny in lancaster ohio on our line for republicans. how are you today? i just wanted to say -- i would think 16 months is quite a long time to get unemployment. wouldn't you think? did you have a further, you havecaller: -- did
colorado. greg is on the line for democrats. the wayif we look at the budget is set up, if we take money out of the subsidies we give corporations we could fund enough money to help people. when they show up for work in 2010 they said they were going to do a jobs bill. we are in 23rd team. -- in 2013. i don't think how they can blame democrats when republicans -- it is three years after they won the election and they haven't done nothing about jobs. -- john boehner spoke out about extending these unemployment benefits. let's listen to what he had to say. [video clip] worked all year to
get our economy will working again. when the white house called me last friday about extending unemployment benefits, i said that we would clearly consider it as long as it is paid for and as long as there are other efforts will help get our economy moving once again. i have not seen a plan that meets those standards. i was john boehner. next in maryland, georges on our line for independents. i was unemployed when i was 61. i have several college degrees. the people who have unemployment in this economic downturn are in a rough spot. -- what i seen
wall street is they are buying back shares. they are making record profits for corporate american. it is just a shame. i don't look to congress to be able to sell it. i wish everybody a happy holidays. our next call is ken in cincinnati, ohio. host a radio show here in cincinnati. i think it is a shame that the democrats are trying to reap -- trying to blame the republicans for this. to sign this tried into law. both parties signed up on this. it is just a shame. do you have folks a call into talk about this issue, what do they say to you? www.c- a lotrg a lot --caller:
of people believe the republicans are at fault. the democrats are just as bad if not worse. the republicans are doing a terrible job by allowing the democrats to brand them as the mean guy when they are just as bad on this issue and just as guilty. do you think lawmakers should extend the of employment benefits? caller: i think they will and i think you will have another fight with raising the minimum wage. the employer should be given a choice to either pay the regular taxes or a flat tax. anybody who wants to take away what they perceive to be the rich, it is just classic warfare. i think that is one of the thing that is problematic with our
country right now. also making headlines in "the washington post" -- our topic this morning, 1.3 million people to lose unemployment benefits today. our next colors and a in lakewood florida. thank you for taking my call. i am in consensus with everyone who says unemployment should be cut. the more you give the more dependent we become.
it is human nature to take, take, and take. everybody needs to make an effort and go out there and to a days hard work. why should the government give you anything? supposednment is not to support us. we are supposed to go out and -- and work. go pick strawberries, do something. too many of us are too proud to take any job that is under what we consider unfit. backed to take a step and do what our parents and great-grandparents did. don't take money. a couple of tweets coming in. you can find us on twitter.
brian jarvis tweets -- mike is on the line in alabama on our line for independents. from what i have experienced -- i have a brother and ex-wife who have been under an unemployment extension for two years. as far as jobs, i have also some of them are jobs, more for lesser whether you have a career or not. our next call comes from
los angeles. i know three people who have been on unemployment for four years. i talked to one guy, and they're open and honest about it. if they get a job that pays $800 per week, they will take it. he has been doing this gag now for years. ageist gets to the point that when you are collecting money and not doing anything, you are living off of other people talk -- other people's work. i personally like the word "slavery." it is just wrong. after six months get a job.
and life is tough sometimes. host: an e-mail. if you would like to shoot us an e-mail, we are at journal@c- span.org. next up is lower on the line for democrats. that is lara on the line for democrats ash next up is a lara on the line for democrats -0- next up is laura on our line for democrats. caller: are you going to get back into the streets like when bush was in office and we lost everything? we are going backwards.
--rybody should be looked at how they are living, how they should pay. they don't want to see these kids eat? come on. have a heart out there. cut everybody off unemployment and see how me jobs are lost. i pay my taxes every year. if i want my taxes to go to the poor and the people that don't have jobs, that is my prerogative. percent of this country has taken advantage of us and the republicans are given the tax loopholes and they are getting them right off of that they are getting off private jets. i wish i had a private jet. with just despicable republicans are doing to this country. host: a final report on sandy hook.
authorities and consent -- and connecticut released a final report -- our next call comes from kingsport tennessee. millie is on our line for independents. caller: good morning. five years of unemployment is enough. some people need to step down the ladder a little bit and stop trying to use of government
money. thank you. host: james on the line for republicans. we have so may people coming to america from other countries that they are taken all the low-level jobs. i got a step daughter in college and usually college kids can get a job working mcdonald's or landscaping in the summer. there are some and foreign people working at the low-level that there is not enough jobs -- so many form people working a low-level jobs that there is not enough jobs to go around. we need to look at everything about this immigration and unemployment.
there is not enough low-level jobs for all the americans. the 50-year-old housewife that is trying to help her husband, she cannot find a small job. siteo to a construction and it is all mexicans. the sandy hook bill, we need to put god back in schools. one point 3 million to lose unemployment benefits today. a tweet -- bill king tweets --
steve is on the line for democrats. caller: think you for c- i do not know if it is a good idea to have the talk radio show people. they are a commercial group. if we wanted to hear them, we would tune in to them. the conservatives like to bring up this term, class warfare. i wanted to ask, what exactly is class warfare if we are an equal opportunity, all men are created equal society? i will take my answer off of the air. ken is on the line for independents.
i believe there are enough individuals within the where there is a possible alternative to have each one of these people who no longer receive benefits live with wall street executives and everybody in congress. maybe congress should have three people living with them, one for nafta, one for wall street, and one for general principles, being humanitarian. host: headline from this morning's new york times. reporting out of tokyo. officials on both sides of the pacific hailed it agreement involving a marine base on oak in our. strong opposition to the deal and the prime minister's recent visit to a war shrine cast a
shadow over the diplomatic celebration. despite the united states' deep dissatisfaction with the agreement, a phone call between defense secretary chuck hagel and his japanese counterpart was put off. the postponement had yes -- less to do with open now than the japanese prime minister's appearance at the shrine that .onors the nation's war dead big story making the rounds in foreign policy stories -- foreign policy circles. eff is on our line for republicans. caller: i would like to ask the moderator if there was a way you -- could put back up on the screen the specific areas where the unemployment benefits are used.
my question is to all of the people who are calling in stating they want the benefits to extend. isquestion is, for how long this going to be? is this going to be forever? why does it have to be extended retroactively? why can't we just give a break for a few weeks? how long would you like to see them extended? like to see them extended for short-term unemployment. when you use the term long term, do we have a division line between short-term and long- term? states that just one year or two years is enough? you have had numerous callers calling in giving exact detail,
stating, i know people whose unemployment benefits provide more income than other people who are working or trying to work. it is tough out there and i fully understand that. i am not trying to be cold or hard. but four or five years? there has to be a cutoff point. host: that was jeff in iowa. the map he referenced can be found at the washington post website. on the line for democrats. i would like to hear some other people on unemployment explain to the rest of the country that we are not sitting around not looking for jobs. we are required by law to look for a minimum of three jobs a
in,, turned that paperwork register for job services, and pay federal enfolding tax on all of these benefits. it is not just a handout. i was laid off from my job, for which i got paid very well. i took a minimum wage job washing dishes, which i also got laid off from. to all of those people out there who would like to know how it really works, that is how it really works. host: are you one of those people who will be affected by this law? yes, i will no longer receive benefits. way toas no possible gather finances to make sure one could pay their rent or mortgage or utilities or buy food or car payments. it was sprung upon us.
by the way, you no longer have an income regardless of what the unemployment rate was in your area or for any other reason. host: when did you find out? caller: two-and-a-half or three weeks ago. host: what is your plan going forward? plan is to continue to follow the rules, continue to look for a job and do what i can and hope that maybe i can find something whereby i do not become homeless. host: another important headline this morning from the associated press. reported sexual assaults in the military rise. they shot up by more than 50% this year. the increase suggests the victims may be more willing to
come forward after a tumultuous put pressure on the military to take action. there are more than 5000 reports of sexual assaults filed during the fiscal year that ended september 30. of those 2013 reports, about 10% involved incidents before the victim got into the military. that increase suggests confidence in the system is growing and victims are more willing to come forward. the topic this morning, one point 3 million people to lose unemployment today. cynthia is on the line from texas. good morning. you are on the line for "washington journal."
caller: where did all these unemployed people come from? they just landed on us. how can i say this? .his is the economy this is nothing but the economy. these people worked. they are not system hanger on.rs -- hangers everything is against them. food is up. if you rent, it is up. the veterans also lost their benefits. think that was terrible. they had a contract with those people. something needs to be done. shave down the government.
lower the cost so that people will put their money back into the economy and start these people working. i do not have the answer. i am not a politician. five years, the politicians have not come up with a budget. this is what they came up with. i thank you for your time. host: jan -- e in california is on our line for independents. caller: they do everything they in to hire foreign born here california in high-tech. all of these people on long-term unemployment, they have worked for years. companies would rather have foreign-born, at least in high technology. wayne in south carolina on
our line for independents. caller: we should just enforce the he poured tatian laws that are already on the books. deportation laws that are already on the books. iny are more interested collecting votes from people already in the country. it is not what the american people need. we need for americans to work. support an you extension on these unemployment benefits? what is your take? yes, i would. i have had rough times. i have not seen times as rough as they are in the past five years. they are getting worse, especially for low income people. construction jobs, restaurant jobs, a lot of these jobs have new people in the workforce,
people who are not as educated as others. when you let all of these foreigners in, you will have high unemployment across the board truth that is what we have and are going to continue to have -- across the board. that is what we have and will continue to have. caller: i was working for the sheraton hotel chain. i got laid off from my job after 10 years. they were trying to cut back the to part staffers to go time. i have been on unemployment for about eight months now, on tier 3. i will be one of the ones let go today.
work oneen looking for stanley. i am at the age now where i am 56 -- i have been looking for work constantly. i amed the age now where 56 years old. in a restaurant hospitality, they seem to only hire the younger kids now. i am at the age where i am almost on higher-level. i have been in the industry rable. 30 4 -- almost unhi i have been in the industry almost three months -- 30 years. i was hoping they would extend it at least three months. fred is on our line for democrats. for having me on. 1.3 million jobs. that is equivalent to 400,000 robots being put online work 24 hours a day at three different
shifts. taxese dollar of income is being paid by them. we talk about the stock market going up. on every transaction, there are no taxes being paid for shares that are being traded. you reallyney do need to put away when you are making billions of dollars? comparedx is so cheap to what wealthy people are able to make. infrastructure needs to be strengthened in our country. starving ord not be set on a course we are right now and what we are discussing on this program. it is such an imbalance. what are we doing in other countries showing them how to live when we allow this to occur in our own country? thank you.
host: lawrence in florida on our line for independents. you are on "washington journal." go ahead. caller: i just wanted to let that in the west indies, the dutch antilles, they had a way of keeping everybody with employment. sure everybody worked. half of the men worked a week and the other half of the man work another week. this stops all of the nobody is getting anything, period. you do not have unemployment because people are working.
we have a big problem on this subject because we do not share. want to buy. we want to be in debt. we are directed to live that way. of flaw. a matter if this government would govern the people and make sure everybody got what they needed, we would not have these problems. for this last call segment comes from st. petersburg, florida on our line for republicans. caller: 5000 jobs have left this country. they went to china, india, canada, mexico, puerto rico, pakistan. should not beey going up on prices in this country. have,bs that we used to
we do not have them anymore. how people say people are lazy. you cannot talk for everybody. these people most likely did go look for jobs. their jobs were overseas. postbank we will take a quick break. when we come back, we will be joined by philip klein, a senior writer for the washington examiner. will, sasha abramsky discuss his book for us, "the american way of poverty." newsmakers, the american federation of teachers president . here is some of what she had to say. [video clip] most important thing we
can do is reclaim our values as americans, both economically in terms of the american dream and in terms of public education. not as it is today. even though we are doing better than we have ever done, unless we actually help all kids -- fulfill their potential, we will never be satisfied. as it needs to be for us to fulfill our collective responsibility for individual opportunity for kids. if you see the world like i do, which is we have to re-create a goodto the middle class, jobs, affordable housing, affordable health care, retirement security and that our best assets are the people who actually work -- teachers, paraprofessionals, nurses -- you
see a clear role for the union. the union is about championing those values of economic opportunity, educational opportunity, they can sure the work we do is the best it can be with great solutions that help make that work that are and that we join with community, parents, clergy, small business, to actually create credibility for public schools so that we are championing great neighborhood public schools and communities that have great job opportunities, where you are making sure the jobs of today and tomorrow are filled by people and communities, where you have career ladders where people in the community can become assistant teachers and have career ladders to being teachers. that is what i see. >> "washington journal" continues.
postbank welcome back. as we continue this morning, philip klein, a senior writer for the washington examiner. see, thewe expect to biggest issues in conservative politics as we start out 2014? guest: among conservatives, there is a disagreement about how to handle the current circumstance. he have a divided government. are in as democrats control of the senate and president obama are in office, a lot of the main conservative goals are not going to be able to pass. among conservatives, there is a general disagreement with what we want to see happen. we would like to see tax reform
that brings down rates and sympathize the tax code. we would like to see health care reform that is based on a consumer driven approach instead of an approach geared from a top-down government solution. we would like to see entitlement reform, dealing with the long- ,erm drivers of our deficit medicare, medicaid, social security. there is general agreement over what needs to happen from the conservative perspective. however, the big debate in 2013 was a tactical disagreement over how to react to those circumstances. some said, we are not going to -- imposed the conservative tonda by forcing democrats
cave. some people have said, we have to push them and use every opportunity. there might be some sort of leverage to try to force the parts of our agenda that we agree with. that is what we saw defend the government shutdown fight. after the government shutdown the side that said, let's be realistic over what we can consume -- conceivably achieve with obama, with the white house, and with harry reid still in charge of the senate -- that is gaining more power after what happened with the shutdown. particularly because of the problems that have been going on with the rollout of president obama's health-care law, a lot if, republicans feel as
with the health-care law having so many problems, we do not want it to be so easy for obama to change the subject to republican obstructionism or trying to blow everything up. we want to keep the heat on the failures of president obama's signature legislation. to ask you about the government shutdown. did that help or hurt conservatives? that topic is constantly debated among conservatives. at the time, and continuously, i argued that it was a bad idea. as long as harry reid is in
charge of the senate and president obama is in the white house, you are not going to repeal or defund obamacare. any strategy contingent upon hising obama to defund signature legislative achievements that he spent the first year of his presidency , staked his whole reelection on, and the idea that this is his one accomplishment and it is a big legislative thatplishment -- the idea he was going to on do that and you -- and you based your entire strategy on that was a poor strategy. the publicans ended up caving without getting much in return because they had to. then, we saw with the deal that was just struck with the budget,
it loosens the sequestration cap that conservatives fought for. it loosens them for 2 years. conservatives originally said, our bottom line is we do not want to break the sequestration levels of spending. that would've been a realistic demand in september. off ended up in a worse position because they are not being taken as seriously by leadership because john boehner will said, i will put things on the floor and pass it with democratic support. what i compared it to is salary negotiations. there are conservatives who try to argue, we have to stake out the maximalist position.
if you staked out firm ground, the ultimate settlement will be than you would have gotten if you took a less extreme position. that only works within certain boundaries. someone isit to if making $50,000 a year and they go to their boss and say, i want a raise. i want $70,000 a year. , the boss says, we will give you an extra $5,000 or $10,000. to ask for more. if you go into your boss' office and say, if you do not give me $2 million, i will leave. the reason -- the response is not going to be, how about we give you $5,000 -- $500,000? that is the problem with what
happened with this government shutdown. weremade demands that completely unrealistic. they could never happen. theme stopped taking seriously and they ended up with a result that was even worse than they would have otherwise gotten. host: our guest for this segment is philip klein, a senior writer for the washington examiner. if you want to join the discussion, the number is 202- four democrats -- for forcratsand 202-585-3882 independents. our. -- our first call is from dudley. was listening to you talking about the conservative priorities for 2014. why do you mention jobs, jobs,
jobs? a living wage. that,s you did not do because he would be under this president. this is a shame. you are not hurting president obama. you have conservatives out here who are poor. you have independents and democrats who are hurting. why can't you come together as a country and human beings to help people? you do not want us to have unemployment. help president obama get his jobs agenda. get us a decent living wage? 725 -- you live off of $7.25 an hour. i did not hear anything like that come from you. why don't you stop this madness and live together like we should in this country?
this country is too rich and powerful for people to hurt people because you want your party in the white house. you might get into the white house if you do something for people. guest: thank you for the call. good morning. about whats an idea they want to do about the economy. just as president obama has passionate views about the approach he wants to take with moreconomy in terms of government spending and trying to do infrastructure projects, extending unemployment benefits, and so forth. republicans just have a different idea. conservatives do not think that approach works. in and heobama came did this 800 billion dollars stimulus plan and republicans do
800 billion- $ stimulus plan and republicans do not think the stimulus was the right way to go about it. the idea that republicans should just give in to all of obama's not saying come together. come together is both sides meeting halfway. just as republicans have their point of view in terms of what would be the best economic policy, obama has his point of view. host: next call is from tampa, florida. woody is on the line for independents. caller: i find it interesting. the lady that called for the much called you out on most everything. interesting that conservatives feel we should
throw 1.3 million people off of long-term unemployment. i notice we have not heard the speaker standing up and screaming, where are the you see, he was standing up all the time screaming jobs, jobs, jobs. he was not the speaker of the house for the first year and a half or so. noticed is that he is not screaming jobs, jobs, jobs. you tell us that you do not believe. you do not believe that there should be stimulus. haveou continue to vote to $40 billion go to big oil companies. they are the largest profit-making machines on earth. you continue to give millions and tens of millions of dollars to multimillion dollar business.
instead of the mom-and-pop farmers. we continue to give money to wall street to bail them out with quantitative easing. they can continue to buy back their shares and pay higher dividends. they continue to bend over the average middle-class american. they utilize them without benefit of lubrication or protection. guest: thank you for the call. i think that you're confusing me with a spokesperson for speaker boehner. opposed the type of corporate welfare that you have talked about. back in 2008, i strongly advocated against the wall street bailout. i did not think it was fair to give wall street bankers, who did a lot to contribute to the financial meltdown, a big bailout.
problems in the long run in terms of creating a moral hazard. it encourages bad behavior. and so, i think that the famous libertarian conservative free-market economist, milton that the one said importance of capitalism is that it is not just a process system. it is a profit and loss system. the loss is as important as the prophet. we're ushering in a long-term market. i agree with the caller. we should not have corporate welfare. the republican party should be more consistent in its small government message. that is part of the battle that is going on within the
conservative movement right now. it is the moneyed interest thats the tea party groups are trying to fight against the corporate influence. we recognize that often times, the corporations do the most increase. during the bush administration, president bush had prescription drug. tot was a huge handout multibillion dollar pharmaceutical companies. a lot of conservatives disagreed with that. i am among them. i do agree that conservatives should do more in the free-market message. that means ending corporate welfare. host: i want to talk about health care. you talked about different priorities. it is a tactical disagreement. paul broun is running for saxby chambliss.
let's take a listen and get your thoughts. [video clip] >> a lot of conservatives say step back and let it fall to pieces. i do not think that is a responsible thing to do. we need to be looking for things that improve health care of -- overall. if there was something, we need to know about it. >> jack kingston wants to keep obamacare. he wants to fix it. i think that is wrong. as a doctor, i know that obamacare is hurting georgia families. they are increasing premiums. just ask the 400,000 georgians who could have their health care plans canceled under obamacare. i do not want to fix obamacare. i want to get rid of it. i am the only candidate for the u.s. senate who is consistently calling to repeal obamacare. i have the solution. it is my patient option act.
that is the difference. host: bill klein, your thoughts. ♪ guest: it is important to create a distinction between repealing obamacare and having an alternative. is the saying that fixing it tantamount to supporting it. i think that these terms get thrown around and inflated in the political environment. healthpresident obama's care law passed, the united states did not have a free market. most individuals got there health care through explicitly government run programs like medicare or medicaid or they got it through their employers. that then for that is tax code is set up in such a way that it benefits individuals
getting their health care through their employers as opposed to getting health care themselves. at the state level, there are a lot of benefit mandates. they require insurers to cover certain prespecified services and benefits trip that drives up the cost of insurance. the conservative approach to health care should be to try to thate all of the issues were presenting -- preventing the creation of a free market. it would give people more control of their health care dollars. if you give individuals more concise -- control and you have a more consumer driven approach, and there is more transparency, nobody knows what the cost is going to be. nobody knows what the cost of a
doctor visit will be. if you give more transparency and put more power in the hand of the consumers, this draws down the prices. it will increase the quality. that has happened in every aspect of the consumer market. americans are consumers. we shop around and that is what we think should happen for health care. where the debate existed prior to obamacare. obamacare took a different approach. instead of saying consumers should be in charge, he said that the government should be in charge. officials that all purchase insurance policies to offset the cost of requiring insurance to cover older and sicker individuals. we're going to create these government run exchanges with people buying government designed benefits.
the choice is very limited. you are seeing a lot of problems with that approach. facingstion right now conservative is how close can you get to that ideal of a consumer driven system. , i think -- i wrote a column on that this past week. i think that 2014 will be a pivotal year. determine thel success or failure of obamacare. it is quite possible that the , thehat this works out individual market for insurance will collapse in this country. the reason why is that there is something in the and churns industry known as a dust smut -- death spiral.
if you guarantee that everyone can purchase health insurance regardless of whether or not they're sick, then it gives a disincentive for people to buy insurance. they figure they may as well wait until they get sick to buy coverage. if you are healthy, you do not have as much reason to buy health coverage. what happens is that healthy people leave the insurance market. suddenly, you're left with higher prices. the insurance for is more skewed to older and sicker people. insurers have to charge more. this dissuades more healthy people from the insurance market. when that cycle perpetuates, you end up with an unsustainable situation. obamacare took some sort of measures in order to mitigate against that risk. that is why you have the individual mandate, which will
force healthy individuals into the market. that is why you have the subsidies that entice them. it makes it a bit of deal. what you're seeing a lot of , in a lot oft cases, the premiums are a lot higher than people expected. even after the subsidies, they are not enough to cover the increased cost. the mandate in 2014 is rather modest. it is ramped up over time. next year, it is one percent of your taxable income. a lot of people will be more likely to go there. we do not yet have the demographic of the insurance exchanges. people of the young and healthy demographic, how many
are older and sicker -- but enrollment numbers have been much lower than expected, even though they are expected to be higher in december. i think that that is a sort of major problem. are -- the law kind of collapses the instability of the insurance market. republicans will have a greater political leverage to argue for alternate solutions. they will want to undo much of obamacare. if a lot of these doomsday scenario predictions end up being wrong, and it turns out that this growing pain works out, we end up with a much more stable insurance market, then it
--ht under some predictions it will be harder for republicans to undo it. if millions of people are getting insurance through the law, then it becomes politically more difficult. that is one of the arguments for throughrepublicans push the d funding strategy in december. once the benefits are turning out, it is harder to undo. just as medicare and social security and other government programs have become entrenched. host: we have a lot of calls waiting. next is kansas. richard is on the line for democrats. caller: the affordable care act was part of the private insurers. a restricted regulators. they have to ensure the healthy. or toher components
promote the health of all. mammograms for women had to be paid for with no co-pay. same for cancers readings. the affordable care act was to restrict what the insurers could do. to buy insurance today on exchange, those policies are being offered by private insurance companies. not by the government. careree market for health is saying that health care could be provided by a free market. it requires many buyers and sellers. leg,we get sick or break a there are not many providers are sellers that we can go to. we have to go to the one that is closest. saying that the health care
market is a competitive market that operates that way -- no. it is priced more like a monopoly market. guest: thank you for the call. i think that the issue is that it is true. does imposeare law a lot of new requirements on insurers. accept that they have to all comers. even people who are sick or have a previous condition. it is true that they require that insurers offer a lot of benefits. there areis that trade-offs involved. going to require insurers to cover people with pre-existing conditions, you have certain benefits without
co-pays. that means that premiums have to be higher. that is not a big deal if you're someone who are older and you could not get coverage. then you probably are very happy about the health care law. for a number of other people who do not have that benefit, who do not need a lot of the medical services that are now required, they now have to pay for those medical services. a lot of people are seeing their friends -- lansky canceled. many people who like their plans are getting them canceled because they do not meet requirements. part of having the free market would give people more choice. they could choose what insurance to get. it is true, as you say, that there are emergency scenarios where people do not have much choice.
if you are having a heart attack, you will not go online and try to find the best possible way to treat it. however, a lot of medical procedures are not necessarily that much of an emergency situation. if you are getting a certain test, it is not necessarily something that has to happen that day. it might be something that could happen in a few weeks. it might not have to happen immediately. one thing that is interesting that you might want to look at as an example is if you look at the market for basic surgery. that is not typically covered by insurance. time,ou see is that, over the price for laser eye surgery has gone down dramatically. technology has improved so that the procedure is a lot better. it is a lot less risk involved.
so, that is all i am saying. improves andarket quality improves. price goes down. why is it that health care is not? i would argue that the reason is that it is because consumers do not have control over their health care dollars. host: our guest is phil cline. we have 10 minutes left. next, ken in boca raton, florida. caller: good morning. from the and duration of president obama, mitch mcconnell and paul ryan and the -- they foundation
agreed that they were going to be obstructionist and they were going to be the party of no. i had the opportunity to speak with senator leahy, who was very much a part of the early negotiations. he agreed to certain aspects of the affordable care act and went off to iowa claiming that the affordable care act was going to kill your grandmother. there were death panels. that the seems to me an idea romney care was that the heritage foundation, a very conservative organization, passed. it occurs to me that what really is going on here is that once it became a president obama
program, based on romney care, it became an egregious. it was not acceptable to republicans. i do not know if that is what was said earlier on. we pay for when people go to the emergency room. people pay, the taxpayer pays for their care. they're republican or conservative approach to health care was dropdead. -- there was an he harry truman quote where says never teach a pig to sing. it only irritates the pig. it seems to me that everyone in this republican, conservative arena seems to be more caught up with the fact that we have a black resident.
if this was romney, it would not been a problem. guest: ok. thank you for the call. you bring up some fair points. other points i disagree with. particularly with bringing race into this. if nothing else, you can blame partisanship or something. if you look at how president health-care proposal was opposed, it is tough to argue that race is a factor and not partisan disagreement. that -- two things. it is true that a version of the mandate and exchange approach was supported i heritage. romney wasthat mitt essentially the models for obamacare.
we had medicaid expansion. where peoplechange receive subsidies. that was regulated. but the important point to note is that, while there were some conservatives supporting the policy, it was not the standard conservative policy. strenuously and, at the time, disagreed with romney's health care proposal package. therenuously disagreed with idea of forcing individuals to purchase a product that they do not want. i did not agree with the idea of mandating health insurance. i for one strongly disagreed with romney then. i agreed -- i disagreed with it when it was called obamacare.
yes, we can differentiate between conservatives and the republican party. often times, they are very much in conflict. host: the next call is from texas. jill is on the line for republicans. caller: i have two questions. it is ahink state-by-state problem as far as unemployment? here in texas, there are jobs everywhere. we have the highest population of mexicans outside of california. we have no issues. the second question is, how close are we to -- beside obamacare, canada has free health care. they are paying more taxes. are we close to anything like that? guest: i definitely think that texas has been one of the states that has been able to extend a
lot of the economic problems. that has a lot to do with the low tax and regulatory environment. they have been able to extract a lot of business from california. they have very onerous regulations and high taxes. states like texas have benefited from them. in terms of the canadian style health care system, i think that as much as i have criticized obama care, we still have some way to go before it is fully government run. said, if you look back at president obama and what he was saying before he was a 2003, he saidk in that he was a strong proponent of a single-payer. that is essentially canadian style. which ae many ways in
single-payer program could evolve over time. instance, democrats had supported creating a public option. a government run program like medicare on the exchanges. if that resurfaces, that is something that they could evolve into. more people gravitate toward that plan than the private plans. you could see a gravitation toward single-payer. that is one of the reasons why we argue that it is important for republicans to emphasize alternatives. if republicans do not emphasize alternatives, then conservatives are going to find themselves in the same position one decade from now. they will be on the defensive and trying to ward off more aggressive single-payer systems.
i will add that there is a contingent in the democratic party among liberals who strongly support and openly advocate single-payer health care. maybe not the canadian model. maybe not the european model. we support that. just as president obama's health care law has emboldened critics, they also have emboldened critics on the left. why is obama working within the framework of a private insurance market? why doesn't he blow up the private insurance market and cut off the middleman and fund everything direct they? and have medicare for all, essentially. that was the problem with the rollout of the health care law and the exchanges. a lot of liberals are saying
that we were right all along. wish to gun single-payer. the short answer is no, we are not single-payer now. we could get there. host: medford, massachusetts is on the line for democrats. caller: i would like to comment 2014 and goity for back to what can was saying. after obama was elected the first time, the mission of the republican agenda was to make obama failed -- fail. mitch mcconnell was stating that. that has permeated in the last five years. i think that is what really is clogging up progress. getgo to congress and things done and that has consumed all of the progress that could have been made. i wonder if you could make a comment strictly on that. host: sure.
guest: sure. i do not think obstruction is generally -- if a republican president came along and came into town and said he wanted to overhaul medicare and social security, and cut taxes, and increase the defense budget or do all sorts of other things that democrats did not like, i am sure that a lot of liberals would say that they hope the democrats would stand up to it and try to block as much as possible. that is point number one. point number two is that it is a two-way street. keep in mind that president obama came into office and he had overwhelming majorities in the house and the senate. for a while, he had a 60 vote filibuster. he could've done what ever he wanted.
within that window, he got a whole lot past. he passed his health care law. of hist 13 months presidency trying to pass this health care law and he did it without a single republican vote. there were a lot of times during the health care debate when republicans offer different ideas. he rejected them. he said that he wanted to get as much as he could as close to his ideal as possible. given that there were 60 votes in the senate, he did not need to bring in republicans. wrong in ais representative republic to say that let one side when and the other side has to roll over. number two, obama did a lot to
try to force their his own agenda and alienate republicans. last call comes from clearwater, florida. eileen is on the line for independents. caller: i would like to talk about unemployment. i understand the issues on both sides. that if we would set up government agencies with a number to call and report people who are doing fraud, we would be better off of lying something like that. i think that -- i do not know about the specific solution and how that would help, but i do think that there is a big issue in terms of fraud. it is not just unemployment. you see it with medicare and medicaid. particularly medicare. in florida, you see a lot.
you will see this and strip malls. devices ormedical implements and so forth. they have all sorts of stuff. people steal social security numbers. they bill all sorts of things. you see that and certainly combating fraud is an important problem. i do not think it will be part -- to turningg unemployment. -- deterring unemployment. it seems like an easy rhetorical point. it often makes people cynical that anything will actually change. host: our guest this hour has been phil klein, senior writer for the washington examiner. when we come back, we will be abramsky, author
of how the other half lives. ♪ >> we now have secular norms. theological norms that govern our acceptance or rejection of the ways in which a god or gods can speak to people and what impact that has. think of the branch davidians. says he has special insight into the bible. these insights have the other members of the community understand the bible better. it allows them to understand that they are living in the end times. that by itself does not seem to be a problem. elementseads to other
that trigger law enforcement concerns,nd popular then this idea of somebody listening to god and having this aberrant to natural norms, that needs to be policed and controlled. >> wesleyan university professor argues that religious persecution has been prevalent since the mid-1800s. even committed by the very government that proposed to protect us from persecution. sunday night at 9:00. part of book tv this weekend. >> lincoln did not decide early on. he waited until the last minute. he probably met with the pennsylvania governor on november 14. that is when he finally realized he had to decide it he did
decide to go. on the night of november 17, just as he said to his old friend, the brother of his dear friend from springfield, he told him that he found time to write half of the speech. he wrote the rest at gettysburg. i think there is very good evidence that he was not invited early. he wrote the speech late. that does not mean it was not important. he invited a lot of people to go. he took a lot of care and attention once he knew he was going. just because he did not write it for two of three weeks, does not mean it was not important. >> historians talk about abraham lincoln's gettysburg address and the president's plan an approach for the speech. sunday at 11:00 eastern. part of american history tv this weekend. >> "washington journal" continues. host: joining us on sacramento
is sasha abramsky. thank you for being with us. guest: think you for having me on. host: president lyndon johnson declared a war on poverty. give us a status update. guest: he launched a war 50 years ago. people have said it was a boondoggle and too much money. it was pushed into programs that did not work at actually, the half.y was we took our eye off the ball and it increased. isre we stand today in 2013 one in six americans and nearly one in four kids live in poverty. 37 million americans are poor enough to qualify for food stamps. 50 million americans live below the poverty line.
where we are in terms of poverty is this is a problem. not a scandal, not a tragedy. this is an unnecessary situation. what has happened is that we have left an enormous numbers visible. , theirtories matter hardships we are not concerned about. like aids, we have let this problem fester. we're in a moment where this is become a crisis. it is one of the most common shared experiences in america. that is extraordinary. host: who are the people hardest hit by poverty? guest: especially young people. one in four kids. in some places, one in three kids. in places like louisiana and mississippi, african-american property is higher. out oforleans, about two three african-american kids live in poverty. in detroit, about two out of
three young african-american kids live in poverty. in terms of who they are, we have this idea that they are in poverty because they have done something wrong. it is a stereotype. they are morally to blame. i talked to people, men, women, and children. old, young, black, white. there was no one face of poverty. there was no one reason for poverty. some have lost things in the recession. they have lost houses in the recession. i met people who've lost their health care and forced into bankruptcy. i think it is incredibly dangerous to reduce their story to a stereotype. the story of american poverty in 2013 is as complicated as the american story itself. the demographic is complicated. when we hear people reduce poverty to stereotypes, it makes me furious.
i have talked with dozens, probably hundreds of people, in poverty. their stories are so layered. they're so complicated. their lives are so complicated and so real. it seems to me that that is what is missing. we need to understand we're talking are real people with real complicated lives. they need not handouts, but assistance. very often we have these dialogues about poverty, people say that it is an inner-city problem. is that true? guest: i met people in inner cities who were poor. -- iwas one of the most also met matthew joseph, in stockton, california. he had a job. he was a deacon in his church. he went into poverty when he lost his job in the recession.
-- they young woman and not named megan roberts. she was in a greasy c when her husband got a pay raise that was one dollar, just enough to keep them off of medicaid. then her appendix ruptured. they wanted to bankruptcy. there's also poverty in the suburbs. some of the deepest poverty i encountered was in rural new mexico and texas. it is hard to say that it belongs in one place. in modern-day america, it is not true. it is in all the nixon finished. it is one of these great untold stories. you mentioned martha harrington. harrington wrote this book because he was so angered that the men and women and children that he was working with cash
their stories were rendered into the soulful. thes outrageous that in 1960's, the story of poverty was not being told. the same thing is true today. 2013, nearly 50 years after johnson launched the war on poverty, tens of millions of americans in all corners of the country -- host: our guest is sasha abramsky. if you would like to join our conversation this morning, we use the numbers that are listed on your screen. i want to ask you, there is a headline from earlier this
month, u.s. poverty decreased over the past half-century thanks to safety net programs. programs like food stamps and unemployment insurance have made significant progress in easing the plight of the poor. know, 1.3 million americans will lose extended federal uninsurance -- unemployment insurance benefits. how big of an impact will that have? guest: there are a few issues there. programs like medicare and food stamps and unemployment insurance reduce poverty. the reasons that elderly poverty has declined in the 60's and 70's was medicare. there's no doubt about it. if you took the safety net away, many millions more americans would be in poverty. there is also no doubt that that safety net is broken. there are a tremendous number of
america is afe in series of risks. it is one precarious calculation after another. if you do it republicans were suggesting and take out tens of billions of dollars in food the immediate consequences is that millions more americans will go hungry. it is true that if you go back to the great depression, there was actual malnourishment among large sections of the population. millions of americans were going hungry. the food stamp program means that fewer americans are going hungry. i went around the country talking to people and even the people who qualify for food stamps, one of the common things --eard was that the benefits by the end of the month they start missing meals.
if you take food stamps out of the equation, if you say they are too bloated and we will cut them back, they go to real people. the immediate cost is that some of the most poor people start to go hungry. we are not a poor country. we're are not a country lacking resources. we're not a country where this has to happen for economic survival. if we cut food stamps, we're doing so in large part because we cut taxes for the affluent. i think that that is an extraordinary conflict. to tolerate tax cuts for billionaires, at the expense of increasing hunger for young kids. that is just an absolutely immoral calculus. host: the first call comes from brad in michigan. he is on the line for republicans.
are you with us? caller: i was wondering what is your suggestion to save all the poor out there? we have programs and there is a lot of fraud and abuse these programs. a point whereto you do not want to work. you can get free food and everything. guest: i disagree with that premise. you explore the welfare system and the safety net system, it is extremely complicated and cumbersome. to get access to those benefits, you have to prove that you're are below a certain income threshold. to get access to benefits like medicaid, you have to strip yourself of all assets. i spoke to a woman in michigan, who had worked with disabled kids. she did not have health insurance. her husband and not have health insurance. he was a contractor.
the family went into bankruptcy pay medical bills. then they tried to get medicaid. she told me that she could not get medicaid. i asked why not. her answer was that she was told that her assets were too much. the only assets that they have left at that point were that they both had burial plots for themselves. those were deemed to be land assets. that disqualify them from medicaid. i disagree with the premise that it is easy to get these benefits. i disagree with the premise that most people want those benefits. it seems to me that from talking to these people, they find it humbling and humiliating. it is an exercise in shame. it is not something they choose to do. it is something they do because the alternative is hunger. it is homelessness. it is absolute economic insecurity for themselves and sick -- their kids. it seems there are many ways we can approach poverty.
some involve the states and some involve the private sector. one of the things that i did was talk to a lot of people. in the world of policy and think tanks. people who have spent decades working out ways to tackle poverty. it can be done. there are ways. there are ways that you can boost the minimum wage. people fall back on things like food stamps. there are ways you can boost the labor markets. there are certainly ways that you can protect the housing market. one of the things that we saw was that millions of american families thought they were middle class. they thought they were on an economically upward trajectory. when the housing market collapsed, they were lustful durable. their assets were destroyed. many of their aspirations were collapsed. choosingto me that in not to protect those people's
homes and assets, as a community, we left ourselves full normal. there is a yale economist who talks about the -- he says that over the last 25 or 30 years, there has been a shift onto the backs of individuals. shifts, wee risk have done a terrible job of projecting -- protecting people from those risks. the kind of massive economic calamities that have taken down the economic ladder instead of pushing them up. there are many ways we can tackle this. to sit back and say there is nothing that can be done, poverty has always been with us. it will always be with us. that is not our moral responsibility. i do think this is a moral issue. creativity and we have an obligation to protect the most alterable.
host: isidore in capital heights, maryland. caller: hello. what you're saying about the burial plots is correct. i have the same situation happened to my mother. i was trying to move assets and turn him and could not do it. there's another set of poverty too. every time i go to visit mcdonald's, there are kids looking for change. you have 17-year-old at the gas station asking for quarters. you have 15-year-olds roaming the streets. they might look good dressing up , but they are below the poverty level. that is a front for what they do not have. --ot of people in the public drive through these low income neighborhoods.
it is all a front. a lot of people do things like because they want to throw people off. they do not want people to know they are in poverty. , if you these people a lothem something free, of people will not go up to that food truck. a lot of people go hungry at night because they don't want to go to the food truck. that is why you have a lot of people in d.c. that is part of the problem. guest: i think you raise some interesting points. when you have high concentrations of poverty, young people in particular are at serious risk of criminal justice involvement. we know that.
and these african-american neighborhoods, more young black men go to prison and go to college. this is clearly part of any conversation about poverty. had we changed the criminal justice system? masqueradeabout the of the fact that they live with nothing. i went to a school in north las vegas. a very poor part of las vegas. i talked to the principal there. he said you have to meet my homeless counselor. i wondered why they had homeless counselor. i met her. her name was angela. she talked to me about what had happened after 2008. this was a working-class community. she said that they had 20 or 30 homeless kids. this was a school of 2000 students. were 200 homeless
students in the school. these were kids with nothing. their families have lost their jobs and homes. the kids were living on the street and in garages. these are kids. they are children under the age of 18. the only food they were getting at this point was the free breakfast that the schools provided. you hear this often times in conversations. things like the lunch and breakfast programs need to be cut back. the summer reading programs are designed to help hungry kids in the summer months. these are bloated programs that need to be cut back. you hear that a lot on talk radio. we're talking about real kids. i met these children. i talked to them. i talk to kids in a suburb of los angeles. they were having to make this choice. should they follow their college dreams or get jobs to support
their families who could not pay their rent? that is an extraordinary choice that they have to make. they should not be making that. they should not be pushed into that situation. that is one of the great stories of our moment. the number of children and teenagers being pushed into these incredibly difficult situations. by our failures to properly deal with the crisis of poverty. host: we will read a couple of comments from twitter. the first one is from compliance -- they write that the poorest americans still look better than the average person in a third world country. u.s. poverty is a joke. the second tweet says that millions of americans are going hungry, nutritionally speaking. your thoughts on either of those? guest: it is absolutely true that almost all americans whether poor or not poor, live better than the poor people in
the third world. we are not a third world country. we're the richest country in the world. how are we doing compared to other wealthy democracies? how are we doing compared to canada and germany and japan? by those measures, american poverty is exceptional. especially the way in which we let so many of our children live in poverty. no other western democracy has child poverty rates anywhere near america's. -- answer toternet the first one. the second about nutrition is true. the more poor you are, the worse access to have to food. the more likely that you will eat junk food. the more likely you will eat fast food. the more likely that you'll shop at corner stores or gas stations.
you'll haveely that access to healthy fruit and vegetables or farmers markets. all of the other things that are complements of a healthy diet. any conversation about poverty -- i have done a lot of work and any conversation has to address how we distribute food in this country. what kinds of foods are subsidized. what kinds of foods are cheap and what is pushed into poor neighborhoods. that has huge implications for the health of the community. huge implications for the health care system and huge applications for the kind of country that we are. the kind of expenditures that we on taking care of the damage that we have created through poor nutrition in the first place. host: robert in california is on the line for independents. caller: and my on right now?
i think that you should give us the same length of time to answer back as your guests takes to answer back to us. we do not have enough time to say anything. the first thing that is wrong here is this. it is against the federal law to tax rates. you can only tax income which is profited. cost is against the law. what is happening here is that the irs is taking the money out of your paycheck. if you had that, you would not need to be on food stamps or lose her unemployment. you could go into your extra bank account and pay for all this. they have been doing this for years and years. amendment,y the congress should tax the source. they're deducting the source from the income. inside of thee orange and the income is the outside of the orange. how do you get the inside out of the outside without breaking the
skin? this is what these people have been doing for years and years. nobody knows that. if you protest that, you wind up going to jail. the people who did that, and made the violation go through, was the judicial system. guest: robert, i will answer your question briefly. i do not think taxes are the problem here. any modern society will have roads and schools and police forces. we will have street lighting. we will need taxes and federal taxes and state taxes. i actually think the problem is that in recent decades, as a community, we have decided to under tax people and corporations with the most resources. we saw this in the last election. mr. romney, who is one of the americans,nt of
admitted that his tax rate was 14%. we have some of the largest corporations pay no income tax at all. we have warned buffett saying that it is a scandal that people as wealthy as him pay a lower tax rate than their secretaries. i do not think we're taxing too heavily. we are under taxing the wealthy and overtaxing everybody else. we're seeing this with angst like sales taxes. the more poor you are, the higher percentage to spend on consumer goods. if you pay higher sales taxes, that is a regressive tax. if you pay bridge tolls, which go up every year, they are essentially fees or taxes -- i do not think the problem is that we tax too much, it is that the kind of taxes we are using essentially tax the wrong people. that exacerbates poverty instead of rendering it less of a
problem. that is the biggest issue at the moment. host: i want ask about a piece that you wrote for the nation earlier this year. the government shutdown was a war against the poor. explain that for us. guest: one of the things that happened when the government states, a- in some nutritional program for pregnant women stopped accepting new applicants. arizona, for a few days, as soon as the government shutdown, the basic welfare program was suspended. in florida, and various other states, as soon as it shutdown, a number of head start programs went out of business. at every level, the longest the government was shut down, the poor programs were impacted. in some ways, it was an absolute
perfect solution for conservatives. they have been trying to shut these programs down for years. they have never liked programs like head start or programs like the welfare system. therefore, allowing the government to shut down was a backdoor way for them to allow those programs that they could not implement legislatively to come into effect by default. when i say was a war against the poor, i do think that one of the consequences of government dysfunction is that the poor pay the cost of it. they pay just for fortunately. it is a microcosm of the way the political system functions. the poorer you are, the more vulnerable you are to the changing political winds. that seems morally wrong. it seems to me that we ought to protect the most vulnerable. first and foremost, we have to find ways to protect poor kids in particular. --t: our next call from's
comes from dave in long island, new york. caller: good morning. curious because we live in a capitalist system. there has been no discussion about class stratification. or any quality. -- inequality. have poornherent to people. want to talk about individual freedoms and liberty. a lot of the early discussion was based on wanting equal starting ground. the initial emptiness of that was education. if you look at america, our education system is so based on your wealth.
under economic status. wealthy, you can hire an expensive lawyer. it seems like -- what do you think about prisons as a solution to power she? -- to poverty? if you happen to be born into poverty, it seems like the solution in america is, if you do not like the situation, we will put you in prison. cross-the issue of stratification is crucial. to thelistened presidential debates in 2012, there was a lot of conversation about the struggling middle
class. it seemed almost every american was a member of the riddle class. when terms become that -- member of the middle class. when terms become that elastic, they become middle -- they become meaningless. tell you very much. if you extend the definition of middle-class even further and say steve jobs or bill gates or warren buffett is a member of the middle-class, at that point, it becomes absolutely meaningless because it encompasses everybody in the country. i interviewed a person in philadelphia who was in a food cancer, andad medicaid was not paying for her nutritional supplicant -- supplements. she was on a food bank line and that was the only way she made things -- made in meet.
-- made ends meet. how that person can be considered middle class is absolutely beyond me. until we have a conversation about the different levels of opportunity that are available in the country, we are not being honest with ourselves. we are thinking of ourselves as socially mobile. if you look at the data, for the last upload decades, the poor you are, the less mobile you are. bottomare born into the 20% in this country, you are more likely to remain poor throughout your life than almost any other affluent western democracy. you talked about education. in the last few years, higher education became increasingly unaffordable. there is more debt associated with college been associated with credit cards in this country. make cannot find ways to
education good and affordable, there is no way we're going to create the kind of socially mobile conditions we used to have an that used to define america. , "the american way of poverty," i talk about the creation of an educational opportunity fund. it is for social insurance. we know it works for the elderly. that is why we have social security. it makes old age less insecure. we create an insurance pool that socializes the risk of old age. there is no reason we do not do the same for higher education. we know it is a social good and they create -- increases people's earnings opportunities. why not render education something affordable for everybody? of the answer to your question.
host: we go now to a question from our e-mail. how many of the 50 million who live in poverty are families chronically generation to generation living in poverty. poured due toewly the economy? guest: i cannot give you exact numbers on that. there are hotspots in this economy where people have been poor for generations. the mississippi delta would be a case in point. appellation is another case. deeply ingrained poverty. on the other hand, there is a tremendous amount of poverty that might be called new poverty. a lot of it is found in suburbs, areas in the southwest, bubble cities that were hit particularly hard by the housing collapse. you see it in stockton, fresno, phoenix, las vegas. you see it in many cities throughout the southwest and the west in particular.
people's assets were literally destroyed overnight. people whose homes were worth $400,000 one year found they were worth $150,000 the next year. a situation like that, it seems to me that it is impossible to blame individuals for their poverty. it makes no sense. it makes no moral or haskell since and gets you no closer to solutions. it seems to me this is one of the defining narratives in modern-day america. if we wash our hands of the problem and say people are poor because it is their fault or their family's faults and say we want nothing to do with this problem, we are washing our hands with these -- of the stories and the lives of tens of millions of people. that is not how democracy
functions. it is not how a democratic political system functions. this is kenexa stench of challenge. and a question about what kind of society we want america to be over the coming decades and if we want america to be the kind of democracy it has been in the past. we have to address this challenge. we have to deal with the cascading crisis of poverty. re poverty guidelines the same across all 50 states? guest: there are a few states that have slightly different poverty rush holt. if you aren't or receive about $11,000 -- different poverty thresholds. for a family of 4, it is about $23,000.
family ofear for a four does not get you anywhere close to economic security. you will still be juggling bills. you will still be unable to make in sneak. you will still be are owing, maybe from payday lenders or from pawn shops -- you will from be borrowing, maybe payday lenders or from pawn shops. it's by no means provide economic dignity or economic security -- it by no means provide economic gain -- dignity or economic security. host: our next caller is from maryland. when the manufacturing jobs left the country, how do you feel it affected the poverty level ? thank you. lot of jobsful
migrated to other countries. they have been replaced by service sector jobs in the united states. one thing we have seen in the last few economic cycles, each recession,has been a well-paying manufacturing jobs have declined, especially unionized lou koller work. what has replaced them about -- unionized blue-collar work. is non- replaced them union work. in the fast food industry, we started seeing workers going out and demanding a living wage. a $15 an hour living --e for fast food workers fast food workers are paid eight dollars an hour. you cannot live on that. fast food workers, even though
they are employed, still qualify for food stamps and government assistance. how do we navigate that. there is no reason they should not pay the same kind of living wage that manufacturing jobs paid. host: from ohio on our line for republicans. caller: we do not live and a democracy. we live in a democratic republic -- live in a democracy. we live in a democratic republic. foodu are working in fast
and you are trying to support a family, you made a poor planning -- you did poor planning at some point. you keep people in poverty because you think with your heart instead of your head. nothing has helped the human condition more than capitalism. there is no other example you can give me that has helped the human condition more than capitalism. by your comments that you detest it. it was not fast food workers going out and protesting against their wages. that was the unions and you know that. thank you. guest: first of all, whether i think with my heart or my head, it seems that any kind of decent decent has to provide a level of living for its working population. hastalism, in the past, done a good job of doing that.
i am not anti-capitalism. i think capitalism needs to be regulated. franklin delano roosevelt thought capitalism needed to be regulated. he talked about one third of the country ill fed and ill housed. there is no reason america should let such a huge percentage of its population go hungry, go homeless, go without health care. you say the jobs were not intended for adults raising families. but that is where the jobs are. the jobs in the old manufacturing industry are disappearing. created areng exactly those service sector jobs. 70% of fast food workers are adults. 30% are teenagers. teenagers doing fast food summer a goodd it might be wage. an adult that has no other access to employment and their
job and aspirations are all in the world of something like fast food or hold till work or working for a company like -- or hotel work or working for a company like walmart, it is only -- the only way for them to are in a living wage. andnions organized people give them the ability to seek a living wage and the ability to seek banks it benefits that is a good thing. that is exactly entirely compatible with the world of capitalism. socially conscious vision of capitalism. bill inxt up is california on our line for democrats. good morning, bill. caller: mr. abramsky, you are a
very interesting individual. this is my question, sir. why not call foreign aid american aid and let's do a american aid first and then foreign aid? i would appreciate your thoughts on that. thank you. guest: first of all, thank you for your kind words a minute ago. question ofthe american aid versus foreign aid, there is a slight misunderstanding about the percentage of our budget that goes to foreign aid. when opinion polls are done, the american public angst we give more in foreign aid than we do. you could take -- thinks we give more in foreign aid than we do. you could take away all of the foreign aid and it would only be a drop in the bucket of what we need to do domestically. is having more sense a conversation about our own priorities domestically. we have the money and the resources to generate tremendous
anti-poverty efforts. we did so in the 1960s and the 1930s. to do so involves an honest conversation about priorities. one of the conversations that has to be had is about taxes. in the past, and the postwar times, we taxed affluent americans at a higher rates. we did so for 2 reasons. it seemed good to limit inequality, to limit the spread between the wealthiest americans and everybody else. the second reason we did so was it provided the country for resources -- with resources to build up public infrastructure. we created public universities. schools and antihunger programs, and so on. today, we are doing a far less good job. richve said, if you are come you will keep an ear for --
ever greater proportion of your income. the top tax rate has gone down onward.gan's time the estate tax paid by wealthy americans have gone down. capital gains taxes have gone down. the consequences of that are the -- that inequality has gone up. insecurity has gone up. the kind of stories i encountered when i was writing my book, stories of people bankrupted by health bills, people who could not pay their utility bills. people who were going to send their kids to school hungry. these stories have become increasingly common. it is not about foreign aid versus american aid. is about -- it is about what kind of priorities we have as a society, what we value and do not value and who we value and who we do not value. at the moment, a significant number of americans are left outside the american story. invisibleg rendered
and told their lives are worthless. it seems to me that is wrong. a society like ours functions best when we pay attention to the needs of those at the bottom. question coming in via e-mail from shannon in wisconsin. how much of poverty is due to the choices people make? how much is due to the choice is to have children out of wedlock or the choice not to marry in the first place, the choice to have children when you are not -- when you are still a child itself. some of our big-city schools spend the most -- the most her .upil it seems many on the left want money on the problem. it also seems they feel poor kids cannot learn as well as better off kids. a racist andto be
stereotypical attitude. poor kids should be a will to learn as well as the rich ones as long as they apply themselves, focus on their education, and have parents who are supportive of them. your thoughts? guest: there are a lot of different issues wrapped up in that comment. of course poor kids are as capable of learning as rich kids if they are given the same resources. increasingly, what we see is the richer you are in this society, the more you buy extra resources. that goes for private schools, private universities, private tutoring, safe communities kids can come home to in the evening. it goes to every step of the process where you see this differential in resources. if you put up poor child into a safe environment, a drug-free environment, if you gave them the same educational resources, small classroom sizes, good size classes, up-to-date class textbooks and computers, that poor kid would function as well
as a rich kid. but we don't. increasingly, our schools are dilapidated as tax cuts have run their course at the state level. we see states unable to find anything beyond the basics. we see universities where the state is rolling back its responsibility and individuals are having to pay higher tuition. at every level, we see an unlevel playing field, an unfair starting point. the other part of the comment was about the culture of poverty. there is a long debate that goes back to the 1960s and beyond that about whether or not the major triggers poverty or poverty triggers dysfunctional ahavior or whether it is consecrated feedback loop. there are some people who are poor because of her soul choices they made. there are some people who scam the system. there are some people who are
poor because of poor choices they made. you have bernie made off and michael milken and people who madoffcess to -- bernie and michael milken who have system.nd scans the there are good rich people and bad rich people -- scammed the system. frame poverty around that aspect is an observatory. talkedhat because i have to people all around the country and i have listened to their stories. it seems they are going through a set of economic conditions that are absolutely atrocious. to push all of that on to them and say it is your fault you have lost your job and your fault the housing market in your town collapse.
it is your fault you went bankrupt because you got cancer. that makes no sense. that is not the basis of a public conversation about poverty. host: in san antonio, texas, lynn is on the line for independents. so much silliness, so little time. is the reasonon the manufacturing jobs left because we could not possibly compete with the world. the reason schools are so expensive is because the on making insists cheap loans to make it almost ridiculous not to go to these higher education schools. at these schools, the best professors have to publish or perish. they are not teaching the students. they are often a lab somewhere in doing silly things are
studying shrimp running on treadmills. poor people? yes, they have been with us since the beginning of time. they will be with us until the end of time. you make as much help as you can. you must insist they help themselves. i do not know if it has ever been tried anywhere. if every person who got assistance had to get up in the morning and pick up trash in the streets and in the afternoon, up outuld pick the trash of the streets, they would find reductive jobs. if you can lay on your bottom watching television, which a lot of poor people can afford, you will not go out and work. i really do not agree with that. there have been instances where society has been trying to avoid make poor people
do absolutely unproductive labor. thepoor houses and workhouses were exported to america in the 19th century. they were brutal and cool -- and cruel and they did not solve the problem of poverty. you may be right. we will never entirely eliminate it. it seems somewhat utopian to say will -- we will create a society 100% poverty-free. that does not mean we cannot do better than we do. you say it is the unions' fault that jobs disappear. i disagree with that. look at germany for example. germany has a huge trade surplus. it has a far more successful economy at the moment than most other countries in the western world. yet it has preserved high wages. it has done so through anulation and through
employment philosophy that encourages companies not to fire workers during economic downturns. there are many examples of successful capitalist economic systems that have preserved higher wages for skilled workers compared to america. we have seen this multi-decade long collapse in the economy because of the series of choices we have made, a series of choices we have not made as well. it is a series of political priorities. saying that we will never eliminate poverty we cannot do better than we are doing now -- that is an excuse to put our heads in the sand. we can do better. society. dynamic when we set our mind to tackle a problem, we usually tackle it. this is one of those issues. if we paid attention to it, if we did not turn our eyes away from it, if we confronted the stories of poverty and said,
this is not right, this is not the kind of society we should be tolerating, we could do a whole lot better. i think we should try. , women,ies of the men and kids around the country that we are hearing and paying attention to, we all those people an obligation not to reduce them to stereotypes, to deal with their lives in all of the complexity that they live because they deserve that. they are citizens. they are residents of this country. they are part of our story. host: another quick question from twitter. aside from drugs, how does depression/mental ills keep generations poor? guest: the problem of mental illness is a huge problem. it does manifest itself in drug taking and self-medication. oftentimes, it manifests itself and homelessness and causes
extreme expense to emergency rooms and hospitals. it also results in disproportionate involvement in the criminal justice system. if you look at where the biggest mental health providers are, they are in the big cities and big jails. cook county in chicago, rikers island in new york, los angeles. this is where the biggest providers of mental health treatment are. the dysfunctional way of providing mental health is expensive and does not solve the problem. the better way would be a much more billions of mental health community system, the better way effective much more mental health system -- the better way would be a much more effective mental health system. caller: thank you so much for c- span. i would like to lead off with
this simple little quote from the alcoholics' anonymous big book. we place ourselves in a position to be harmed. every 12 stepper knows they have to accept what is true or they do not recover. conversely, the good news is we can also make a better choice to place ourselves in a position to not be harmed. every individual, as well as every nation. i would like to talk about poverty. the left loves to talk about poverty -- i would like to talk about profit. the left loves to talk about profit in disdain. traffic is crucial. profit is things -- crucial. all living things must have food
or it will starve to death. a business must have income, including profit, or it will go bankrupt. if it expands all of the energy in it to get that food before it gets the food, it exhausts itself to death. that is comparable to a business that is not properly managing its cash flow. it goes bankrupt. the truth i accept is that you get more of what you pay for. loafu pay a dollar and a of bread is a dollar, you get one loaf of bread. if you pay two dollars, you get two loaves of bread. less of what you are punished for or what is painful to you. that is comparable to companies putting out products that nobody wants to buy.
their income goes down. their profit goes into lawson they go bankrupt. host: we will give sasha abramsky a chance to respond because we are running low on time. a point.u are right to people put themselves into circumstances and there are consequences. your way of understanding poverty is inadequate. in the southern tip of louisiana. he was a businessman. he relied on profit. he owned five boats and he fished for oysters and he had a good business. hurricane katrina comes along and his boats are literally destroyed. they are washed up over the levees and onto the highway. he lost everything. he spends the next several years rebuilding. government assistance, but he does most of it on his own. he goes out fishing again. just as he is getting back on his feet, the bp oil spill hits.
he had nothing to do with that. he was not in charge of the oil company. he just happened to be a fisherman in the wrong place at the wrong time. he was destroyed a second time in a row. and i met him, he was not back on his feet. he said, i will not afford to buy christmas presents for my grandchildren. this was 2 years ago. how do you take his story and say it is his fault? he is a businessman and he has done everything you suggested he do. at the end of the day, he is still in desperate poverty. i have met people around the country like that. businessman in the wrong place at the wrong time. middle-class homeowners hit by the recession. i met a woman, an accountant in pennsylvania. she lost her job at the beginning of the recession. she spent years and years looking for work. finally, after two years, she
ended up with a job that paid 20,000 jobs a year, one third of her old salary. she was skipping meals. her car was about to die. she had to make every lifestyle change under the sun and she burned through all of her savings and her retirement. how do you tell her you have made the wrong choices? have are going to conversation about poverty, it has to be about the individuals and the broader web in which they live, the society and economy in which they function. we are a competent in society. we are a society of 300 million people. not all of those 300 million, no matter how many correct choices they make, are going to survive economically. had is the conversation we are not having properly at the moment. host: our guest for this session has been sasha abramsky, author of "the american way of poverty ." thank you so much for joining us
this morning. coming up next, we will take your calls. first, we will take a quick break. theou and charlie rose are guys who read books the way i read books, to talk to the author seriously. it is tremendously revealing when an author has their book read because they do not yet many people who read their books with page notes. i get a great deal of satisfaction from an author who says to me, that is the best author i have had on this book tour. i loved the interview on things that matter, the new election of essays. that makes my day. i like radio.
three hours is an abundance of time. >> more with the radio talkshow host sunday night on c-span's "q & a." >> he says what he thinks no matter what it is. i think you have to be political in a certain way. you have to be honest and you have to say the same things. you have to know what they want and need to be able to influence them to vote for you. is not being dishonest. it is just finding out what they want and letting them know how you are going to help them with getting the things that they want. >> "first ladies, influence & ," season two.
>> c-span, we bring a look affairs events from washington directly to you. putting you in the room at white house events, briefings and conferences, and offering complete gavel-to-gavel coverage of the u.s. house as a public service from private industry. we are c-span, created by the cable industry 34 years ago and funded by your local cable and satellite provider. now you can watch us in hd. >> "washington journal" continues. for the last half hour we want to talk to you about another big story on almost every front page. over theut the debate national security agency's surveillance activity. a federal judge in new york ruled friday that the massive collection of domestic telephone
brought to light by edward , rejecting awful challenge by the american civil liberties union. victorysion marked a for the government less than two weeks after a district court judge ruled against it. it is likely the supreme court will have to decide the issue. that is from this morning's washington post. the story leading the front page of this morning's austria journal. surveillance.a the case was brought in june by the american civil liberties the agencyh claimed was violating americans' constitutional rights by collecting metadata. they said it was akin to snatching every american's address book.
said it was extremely .isappointed with the decision the group plans to appeal the ruling to the second u.s. circuit court of appeals in manhattan. we would love to hear from you this morning. formrepublicans, the number is 202-585-3881. is democrats, the number 202-585-3880. independents, the number is -- the-3882 you get .umber is 202-585-3882 you can also reach out to us on facebook.
has the national security agency's massive collection of americans' phone records actually held to prevent terrorist attacks? the 300 page to report issued this month by a panel of legal and intelligence experts appointed by president obama. on in a ruling issued friday, a judge came to the opposite conclusion. the american civil liberties union challenged the constitutionality of the data collection program. the program demonstrates the importance of fixing the law at its source rather than waiting for further interpretations by higher courts. wereer this year, there attempts to add amendments that
would curb the nsa surveillance practices. those efforts were unsuccessful. it is still a story getting a lot of traction. we saw a tweet from a former governor talking about this particular issue and giving his response. he wrote that a federal judge said nsa data grab likely violates the fourth amendment. today, a different judge says it's ok. congress, what say you? the first call for this segment comes from spencer in california on our line for democrats. spencer, are you with us? caller: i am with you. critical topic. it has to do with privacy. your body is your temple. we have freedom of choice.
host: all righty. fromext call from bill is connecticut. we need 45,000 people in the nsa checking on everybody and the huge military budget we got in 130 different countries? every now and then someone is going to get through and get us. hookcannot stop this sandy incident or the domestic incident where somebody goes crazy and attacks of school. we have to get our priorities in order. although spending for surveillance, military and overseas is stealing money from our social security system, our roads and bridges.
we just can't function as a country because the money is not coming in anymore like it used to. inventeds could have did not, but they because they wanted to keep their people working. the military-industrial complex is what is going to tear this country down, as well as other things. our next call comes from arlington, virginia. mark is on the line for independents. the last disagree with call. i think the judge made the proper decision. the evidence is supported in the first world trade center bombing and the group of people who successfully detonated a device at the world trade center, but were not successful in taking it
down. they forced that to go to trial in new york. was of the evidence given that they had cell phone .vidence from the perpetrators as soon as they mention that, every cell phone in the middle east or somebody up to do this country harm went dead. we had an easy way of tapping into their intelligence and gaining information. there are several examples of this. we have set up intelligence gathering situations and somebody opens his mouth like this edward snowden guy and that intelligence is lost. we have to escalate to a different level. this is a different world than what it was a decade or 2 decades ago. we are losing our rights and our privileges in the worst possible way to do to these people. to these people.
att: a tweet from a reporter pro publica.-- the report is inconclusive and fax contested. the next call comes from oregon. john is on our line for independents. taking thenk you for time to receive my call. i am conflicted by the 2 judge s' rulings. ruled that thee lawful.tions are it could be that the law itself is unconstitutional and it could also be that the nsa could act within the constitution to get done what a want done. but currently, as i see it now,
and, mostactions likely, the law that allows those actions, are unconstitutional. thank you for your time. next call comes from iowa. will is on our line for republicans. for thei used to work nsa. i find this whole topic troubling. it is clear that the fourth amendment says you have to have probable cause. to sweep up data, let alone to store it, there is no probable cause to do that on an entire civilization. a lot of people talk about police data. i watch c-span regularly. it was about how we were becoming a police state.
even ask theo question, is this constitutional or is this legal, when it ofarly is not, it is kind going above board to say problems like this are somehow legal. most of us agree they are not. they are more reminiscent of something we fought during world war ii and we should not be going down that road anymore. thank you very much. host: a couple of tweets this morning. we are pleased that the court found the nsa woke telephone -- bulk telephone collection data unlawful. aclu tweets, we intend to appeal today's ruling. losnext call comes from angeles, california on our line for democrats.
lived in actually china. china is a police state. i teach english there and i am just home for the holidays. it was interesting when talking to my students about the nsa wiretapping, which has been going on since 2001 -- since after 2011. they have been doing this for quite some time. for us to be in an uproar about this kind of wiretapping i thought was kind of strange, especially coming from my students who are asking me, why is america doing these things. i thought america was supposed to be such a great country. it is sort of idiotic that we are actually considering this a major issue. the government is doing their job by not actually lifting -- listening to our information.
they are getting timestamps and things about who we talked to, but not exactly what we are saying. i do not feel our privacy is necessarily being violated. host: this is an issue that is spending over to some -- spilling over to some 2014 campaign. western democrats condemn nsa surveillance. candidate for senate, likely to be appointed when max baucus becomes ambassador to china, is the latest in a long line of democrats to protest. released a statement friday that blasted a federal judge's ruling. outspoken criticism of nsa program allows potentially vulnerable incumbents to distant -- distance themselves from a president whose popularity is sagging. comes from maureen
in dallas, texas on our line for independents. i just want to say that i have lived in this country 50 years. i am 73. gettingerica starts back to speaking truth and not the country will continue as it is doing right now, to go down and down and down. i am thinking of relinquishing my american citizenship because i am ashamed of the fact that i have the citizenship. i will go back to my citizenship from the u.k.. i just recently came into the country from london after going to a funeral over there. the feeling that people have nothinghis country is
but, we do not want to listen to you because you have nothing to say and you do not tell the truth. first, speak the truth otherwise you have the cart before the horse. it is necessary to speak the truth to the population. d.c.ed to give washington, something as strong as an enema, get rid of them and start again leader,perot, the true would love. term limits. one term, go back to where you came from and we start again. coming in this morning. american hero joe says, it sounds like they want to record everything but say, we won't look at it without proper permission.
says, if there has never been a breach of the fourth amendment, i have not seen it. i guess the constitution means nothing. from new york on our line for republicans. us?e, are you with yes, i am. i would like to bring up mr. snowden's situation and how we chased him out of this country. would you mind turning down your tv or radio a little bit? i am having a little trouble hearing you. artie, we will try to put you on hold and come back to you later. we have a call on our line for democrats. caller: i do not know what all
the trouble is with the nsa. they are keeping us safe. we do not have to worry about all of these haters and the boogie man under my bed. host: another article in the wall street journal. one of our callers brought up these 2 distinct rulings. federal judges took on the same issue and reached diametrically opposed conclusions. a judge in washington ruled december 16 that the nsa bulk collection of phone records was almost certainly unconstitutional. a judge in new york said friday it was lawful. he runs down a series of what he calls dueling quotes and what could pave the way for a ruling by the supreme court. mark in new york on our line for independents, .
for taking my call. i agree with the previous callers who point out the difference between something being lawful and unconstitutional. i hope the gentleman from nsa are listening. the practical reality is this. we had a system in place that made more than one individual uncomfortable. it may mr. snowden so uncomfortable that he decided to go rogue, which is an extraordinary state -- step for a person to take. a need congress to create balanced way to protect us from terrorism and to protect privacy rights. i do not think it would be that hard. the federal government could find efforts for the private sector to collect metadata in have an oversight process where they request and get access to that metadata as quickly as they get it now.
it is clear that there is not enough monitoring. i come out of the internal auditing community. not beenhere has enough monitoring. there has not been enough oversight. there has not been enough focus on what are the proper controls that will make the public comfortable. with a little forethought, it would be easy to do that. you could have verizon collect the metadata. if there was a conversation that was of interest to nsa, they could request those phone records from verizon. they could pull on those threads and do that fairly quickly. it would require some oversight and some approval and some thoughtfulness. i think mr. snowden, his going be a, has the ability to positive influence on making citizens and employees in the intelligence community comfortable with government
oversight of this to keep america safe. up in russell, kentucky, herman is on our line for republicans. caller: the technology we have today, cell phones and all of this, and people arguing about society,when we, as a if we want privacy, they need to realize that in a technical it,d, if they want to have they have to go back to the old- fashioned ways. to speak the truth -- i heard the lady before talking about speaking the truth -- the truth is we do not have any privacy as a technicales into society with satellites. they can spot what you are
reading and you have a book in your hand, they can read that book, privately. we are in a technical world now and they need to go back to the old ways and have privacy. ) our next caller is in new mexico. -- is in newnext caller mexico. robert is on our line for democrats. caller: this was not the only administration. , bush and obama both have been spying on us. that, bush and obama have both been spying on us. this is unreal. the patriot act. has left, i snowden consider him a personal hero. an interview with a former senior nsa employee.
he says the nsa is lying to the courts. the government knows they are lying when they say, here is the evidence used to arrest these people. a are telling foreign counterparts these -- this is the evidence to arrest people. the counterparts do not get to see the data because it was from nsa collection. nsaas a senior mathematician when he worked for the agency. he left after the nsa began to collect data on americans they should not have been collect ink. next up, i'll board in georgia on our line for independent -- albert in georgia on our line for independents. the overview of the government that is providing our safety is a great thing to have in place.
advancementsical we are making today -- he put out our information freely. outside of the government, who else is surveilling this information. i would like to go back to a previous caller as far as technology. there is nothing technical about our society today. just because you have a new phone in your hand that you can stream this and strain that, does not make an technical. we have some of the worst -- you can stream this and stream that, does not make it technical. i agree with the previous caller as far as putting out information and having some privacy. we do need odyssey. we also need security. the government has evidence we do need privacy -- we do need privacy. the government has provided us some security.
we have the opportunity to put all of our information out. outside of the government, who else is surveilling this information? why is he being stockpiled? thank you very much. have a good day. mike.a tweet from a file of phone numbers is not a threat. a file of e-mails complete with addresses probably violates. a call from massachusetts on our line for democrats. can track you people's e-mails as well as all of their purchases with their debit cards and any time they go know every, you single thing you need to know about that person, their habits, everything they do, where they go, who they talk to. why do you need to know that just because?
why does that mean to be stored to use against you at a later date? if you videotaped every single thing that your kid did and later on in life said, when you were this age you did this and we have to punish you for that -- that does not make any sense. why would you do it? another all be teary or motive. why are they storing all of this information -- there has to be an ulterior motive. what if they change the law. we will start using that against child molesters or we will start using that against drug dealers. most people would say, that is fine because those are the dregs of society. but what are you going to do when it comes down to you and they want to prosecute you for anything that they possibly can because they changed the laws to favor themselves? thank you.
last call is from joseph on our line for republicans. joseph, if you could turn your tv down, you are on "washington journal." good morning. i hear people complaining about privacy invasions of. .- about privacy invasions we have had our privacy invaded for 100 years. i was working for the government or in vietnam. spoke french and some other languages. russiansveilling the and cambodians in 1972 and 1973. i wrote down what they said and they took the information. bosnia, i did the same thing. even when i was in germany, i withd at the border
norway. we had people who would work with us. we did not explain to everybody, the person did this. the government chooses what they want to listen to them what they did not want to listen to. some things are wrong. in the long run, they are helping this country because we are threatened by everybody. i do not know for what reason. maybe because we get involved with other people's business, which is somewhat wrong, too. but we are protecting our citizens and our rights. the government would not go out there and say, you said this to this guy. thing.ia does the same people are under surveillance.
they are just looking for national security. unfortunately, that is all the time we have this morning. , potential military hotspots in the year ahead. we will be joined by an author and presidential historian we will see tomorrow. have a great day. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013] quacks today on c-span, a discussion on the role of faith