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tv   American Socialism  CSPAN  July 3, 2017 12:59pm-2:03pm EDT

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commission, talks about how the fcc is changing under republican leadership and issues ahead. >> when we go into a direction that might be more philosophical, i believe, than practical, we need to ask ourselves, will consumers be protected? under the current paradigm that i see teed up, what i'm hearing in terms of moving back to the days of old, i really don't see where the consumer benefits will derive. >> watch "the communicators" tonight at 8:00 eastern on c-span2. >> this week during the july for recess in primetime on c-span, tuesday at 8:00 p.m. eastern, a debate on technology and privacy, and whether tech companies should be required to disclose customer data. >> some suggest we ought to build the back door in order to allow law enforcement access to
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data. the problem with that is you cannot build a backdoor that works only for the u.s. government, good guys, or other people with good motives. if you build it for them, it will be weakened for everyone. >> >> the most enduring decision a whoident will ever make is to appoint to the united states supreme court and federal judiciary. there [applause] p.m. eastern:00 hillary clinton talking about women in politics. >> women are often the first to spot conflict on the horizon coming their way. isir insight and information hard, -- ignored, it often leads to consequences that might have been averted. .> sociologist and author
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>> every citizen does not fully understand the complex forces that have increased -- for example, their economic woes. economic insecurity creates conditions that are breeding for racial and ethnic tension and reports this week at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. >> the intern publisher of -- economics,olitics, and the future of the american left and donald trump america. magazine print released quarterly, offering socialist perspectives for the future rear harvard university's ciaran stephen center hosted hour, comingis one from cambridge, massachusetts. >> welcome. i'm director of this center. >> our guest today is bhaskar
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sunkara, the editor of publicker jacobin magazine, describes himself as quote, leading left offering socialist perspective on politics, economics and culture. he's the editor among other volumes of the abc's of socialism and coeditor of this book, the future we want, radical ideas for the new century. you can also encourage you to pick up and subscribe to jacobin. i came across jacobin because i was looking for new ideas, new ways of thinking of where the country is going. it's a moment of politics and media. i was looking for fresh voices in that. i just want to read to
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you a -- i printed out the headlines of the jacobin website today. the woman of the at-right, your boss' big little secret, you have the right to know how much your coworkers are paid and if you want to close the wage gap, you should. which he -- work to death, the american pension crisis and capitalism versus privacy. a number of interesting and compelling arguments and ideas. i'm looking forward to a vigorous discussion. let's go. welcome to harvard. >> thank you for having me. [applause] >> i want to start and request you for your diagnosis and the politics in the country right now? >> you're starting big. i was expecting oak. [laughter] >> it's all right. next time.
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>> there's cubicles evens. >> you have a lot of people who are alienated with politics and in danger of having voice from the populist right. the situation to me is a depressing one. trump doesn't have a huge mandate yet. he sweeped by the election. democrats continue on the current course he could develop one over time. it doesn't take much. it doesn't even take trump and the right to convincing people that they have a much better alternative, all it takes is a little bit of depth of financing and them being smart enough and paul ryan allowing a big infrastructure and job's program and feelings that a lot of people are having. now 10-20 years down the road
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but immediately. kind of rhetoric of sanders' campaign, you work hard, you sacrificed a lot, you're trying to do right and you deserve more and not only that, we know the people responsible for not having enough and it's a millionaire and billionaire class. broadly, that's the only fighting alternative to the rhetoric we are having from the populist right and, you know, we are in a situation now that seems to be a pretty dire one with the rise of the right and with them having trump at the helm and obviously trump has certain things to his credit, oppositional figure, embodies some of the rhetoric,
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some of the antiestablishment pose and what not. he does feed his base with red meat and he's made a lot of crucial errors around trumpcare and other things and the way with some of his proposals have been layed out. can you imagine how dangerous the situation would be if the populist right had someone with more kind of vision. so i'm afraid not just now but after we defeat trump and i also thought he didn't have a chance in 2016 so who am i to say, but what about trumpism. could we be in a situation that resembles french politics, there's still there as a major force. i really think that the only alternative is, i'm not saying it's socialism or. barbarism. that's why i'm a socialist and we need a socialist poll in american
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politics because of the pragmatic of the democratic center in unpragmatic way allowing this right-ward drift. >> you mentioned bernie sanders, but he's approaching 80 and many of the leaders of the democratic leaders are approaching 80 if not older. >> yeah, i think this is not the fault of this generation democratic leaders, this is often framed in the way that fdr and lbj were of a certain character and hillary clinton is of another and a very personalized way which i don't think makes sense. the democratic party has always been a party of capital and that don't mean -- it's always represented certain business interests, big oil, we now society with george w. bush, democratic coalition from 1930's
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to the 80's. now, if you have party that represents labor interests and capital at the same time, it means that when times are going well, there's a boom, you could actually say that the pie is growing because of this business-led growth and we are going to make sure that some of the share of the growing pie is going to workers. now, when the pie is at best the same size or if anything is shrinking, the best the democratic can say, you know, we are going to give you more of the pie, more of the pie than the republicans could and also to historically apress and marginalized groups and make sure that the drinking pie is
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more split up. so, in other words, they can promise social inclusion but they promise without any of the economic gains that went with it. they could offer both. so you can obviously see the way in which not just white workers but whole segments of population, things have been going wrong for them, now correlate the fact that the .now correlate the fact that the pie is growing and there has been social gains for oppressed groups together as being ones responsible for the other. and i think, you know, the approach of the populist left that emerged around sanders and also represented by people like keith ellison and elizabeth warren or that the pie is going to continue to strengthen in this direction. my view of the democratic party because of the broader structural kind of factors that have emerged since the 1970's, there needs to be a strong affirmative program of redistribution and alternative
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models growth. they have been unable to provide it. often on the left we personalize this inability but, you know, the fact unless you actually have the will and the capability to mobilize a different source of power than traditional democratic base and by base i don't mean the people voting for the democratic party, the business interest attached to it and today a lot of it in the finance industry, real estate, silicon valley and what not, unless you're able to conceive politics in a different way, more popular way, i think that we are doomed to have the democrats continue along this path. >> so that in that framework, why did you start this mag >> i started the magazine, honestly, i have lots of reasons why i could say, right, it's easy two or three years, in this case, five or six years come by with narrative and vision. i had extra spare time. [laughter]
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>> and my sophomore and junior year as undergrad, i didn't have a lot of social obligations, the world wasn't asking much of me at the time and i thought that i had developed a network on the socialist left and i knew plenty of smart people and so i figured, why not take the smart people and facilitate a project so we are not just talking amongst ourselves and based on the idea that socialist idea, i've been a member of the democratic of america and for me these ideas, the moral and ethical idea and the core of the socialist project, the idea that we should live in a world without exploitation and oppression, these are ideas that should have appeal beyond the 5 or 6,000 people in discussion of the idea. even at a time of historic defeat, we are trying
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to evangelicallize and try to win liberals with vision and purpose . at first it was online magazine, utter failure. my first day we had 636 visitors on the site and the reason i went to print, i figured it would make it -- >> how many of them were your mother? [laughter] >> my mother and my aunt. refreshers throughout the day a little bit. so my thinking was that i needed an actual revenue mechanism and that doubled down and continued to fail for a while but no one was really watching, and this kind of
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narrative that we have two more deeply understand the trump voter and the democratic party.
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>> so i actually have only read about half of that and it seemed to me at least from that half, again for me that's basically what the most books i read. i read the introduction, skin to the end, see the notes and then i said i read the book. but if you're an editor all you need is general knowledge, to treatments of the conversation. it will be tough for me, this as a whole hour. but it's almost like the cultural poverty arguments of the '80s and '90s that were very racist, including publications like the new republic but for like white people. and here is a potential informed i think was only in these communities in like the summer and whatnot. like now pushing the started of there something wrong at the roots of the culture of these communities that reinforce poverty and all these other things. i think there should be a level of understanding the situation that people live in.
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but things are diagnosing that these people should be more flexible that enables, willing to move the cities and whatever else, i think that some of the wrong conclusion. when i see poverty i see something simple, people who need money. i see people who need goods and services. when i think of the state i think this day as the only vehicle large enough to efficiently deliver these goods and services. if we have an epidemic, hair with addiction and huge parts of the country, i see people in need of high quality services to get over these addictions or counseling for medical services and whatnot. also see people who need jobs. i think as a last resort the state should be a provider of those jobs and whatnot. i see the problem i think more simply than a lot of people. it's not a leap into the unknown. we are proposing in the short term nothing more than a scandinavian welfare state, which in a country as wealthy as of yet should be common sense. that's part of our project and
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that's part of the project bernie sanders contribute so much to. people should expect more of the state. not asking for the state to alleviate heartbreak and suffering and angst forever. like even communism wouldn't do that. certain things are parts of it. the human condition. what we're asking for the states to provide a basic level of human dignity to allow people to reach their potential and so on. i think often there's a kind of voyeuristic view of poverty, whether in african-american meteor among poorer whites where people make it seem like these are impossible to decipher
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solutions. i see 60,000 homeless people in new york and i think hey, maybe, maybe we should build more high-quality public housing instead of letting the public housing we have deteriorated. i see poor people i think we should go -- build homes. at the level of politics i think it's common sense what direction our policy should be driven and that in a lot of ways is a war on ethical vision. >> what role do you see technology playing in that come in the direction of our economy? >> on technology this is one place where i can't even really feigned to her three minutes because i'm only, think like a lot of people unconvinced by blasting a bit. something will say driverless cars and mass automation of existing jobs is coming like in ten years, another article with the 20th. i agree with the last thing i read general. i would say if you think about places in which like why in europe one of the more capital intensive and why of a slightly more innovative edge in american companies and factories. traceable. they have more wage pressure. when a look at the low-wage workforce in the u.s. i kind of think why would p want to automate some of these jobs? because they're being paid almost nothing and they're introducing new technologies and so on. to some degree, about half past some of these automation will be pushed
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through. i also think that generally -- >> you're a skeptic because there's a potential that automation will increase pressure on -- >> no. i'm skeptic just because i think as far as these will all be introduced, but as far as the pace of the introduction, if we had, even a social democracy and yes, i think we would have a quicker pace of job displacement through ottomans asia and because that more wage pressure and more incentive for companies to invest capital, capital intensive technology. as it is, i think it's more important than
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ever to actually develop a moat of politics in the foreground in the interests of workers. that doesn't necessarily mean that society would be like on the cutting edge of technology whatnot. it might create wage pressure that will increase the pace of technological innovation but it been at the same time be able to protect these workers through active labor market policies and jobs through training and a welfare state in case they displace and can put them in a different sector of the economy and whatnot. i think where to start from the premise the most important thing is in the bottom line. the most important thing is social welfare. when we think about 1970s, i hate to to point to it, it's not my model but it's as close as we have gotten, you know, human endeavor. this is a society that has free trade,, right? this is a society that had lots of firms failure and things like that. i think, in other words, we developed the politics that foreground worker class interest, then from there we can see technology as the thing that helps rather than hurts. certain jobs should in fact, be automated. the people
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in the sectors might want to do something else. but if it on the present course or the working class has less and less power but also their more and more the whims of globalization and technological change i think it's dangerous. the best way after this described was by a british member parliament in the labour party. you trying to explain why in his district almost 90% plus of the population voted leads. he said it's like you're on a runaway train and you don't know what direction the train is going. it's going faster and faster. he said people in his district did what was pretty logical special if it didn't even know if there
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were a conductor or not. they looked around at the people in the car and he decided -- [inaudible] obviously there's a different alternative. there's a socialist vision of maybe trying to community with people in other cars and join together and try to take control of the train but in the present private i think for a lot of people they
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are not against technology, for the sake of being against technology. they are against a train that they don't know what the direction is and they don't know what their fate will be in the future. but through conscious discussion to actual bring politics into this seer, bring politics in the spirit of technology i think we do both. i think would have technological advance. we could embrace the positive aspects of automation. if i'm 27, i am the plaintiff kids anytime soon, but i would hope driverless cars i would have to worry the parents my head one of 17 and 18 trying to learn how to drive and so on. maybe in fact, it would be nice living in a society where human beings are in control of the vehicles. maybe there will be certain social goods and we can think about it. but i'm more apt to envision the future ones were at that stage done and now when i know how many truckers and cabdrivers whoever else will be displaced would just go from being employed in the working class to being just for. so that's kind of my take on technology without being anti-technology. >> there's this kind of media narrative about young people in america being very far left and arguably the farthest left generation, the country has ever seen, kind of a new generation of socialists. is that narrative true? is there a generational kind of shift happening? play that out for us.
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>> i think it's true in this instance. in the united states today that is often ascribed to like you or the other like cultural factors. but if you look at france for example, not to turn back to france, but the national front might actually win a polarity of young people, of millennials. these are people of course exposed to a very similar mass culture that america's young people are exposed to and whatnot. there's reasons for this but the point being that i think yes, young people are moving to the left, but a lot of that has to do with politics. has to do with the success of organizers. it has to do yes, a certain degree of cultural trade that makes america better than certain european countries. it's hard to build a xenophobic ethnic nationalism in a state that can see itself at least the nation of immigrants. it's a harder project. i think steve bannon is project, building a social majority of anything he wants to build a social majority is, in fact, harder than my project which is pretty damn hard, then bernie sanders the link of the majority social democratic kind of consensus. so i think he finally just just in the fact a lot of these people are well educated. they are the sons and daughters of the professional
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middle class. they are finding out that the promises told to them that if they work hard, keep your head down they will be able to get a stable job and be able to at least maintain their living standard is a lie. and i think that's leading to people to look for solution. if you are young you might have to find a coherent worldview, agree or disagree with it. in other places on the socialist left then you would in the venues of the center that actually don't have anything else to offer. but i don't want to just assume that demographics will take care of everything. i think that's part of the problem that got us into this mess to begin with. trump's election.
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>> i have one more question and then i will open it up to the audience. so please get your questions ready. i didn't want to ask you about, you know, race and class in america, and to what extent, both race and class were seems like very high relief in this last election. and how do you understand that in america right now? >> it seems to me that if you look at actually the situation in america, you have, first of all this question is often seen as this very kind of broad kind of language but i think in particular in the united states
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went to grapple with the hyper exportation of black workers. they have been locked at the bottom of the u.s. labor market. and they are locked at the bottom of the labor market which is hard to work at it. even for light workers, very little social mobility in this country and they are on the worst end of it. but then i think almost in terms of broader discussion about diversity and representation, and that's been the dominant rhetoric of the democratic party, this rhetoric of social inclusion. it's not that i'm against these things. i think it only goes to the
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surface level. if you want to talk about the conditions of minorities in this country you have to deal with the question of redistribution. if you're dealing with the question of redistribution you have to deal with the question of class. we have to acknowledge the number one,, number two, number three concerns of white workers, latino workers, black workers probably is exactly the same, probably jobs, security, all these other issues. and often again this is kind of made to be this complex difficult thing, like kansas politician, can bernie sanders getting ahead of black workers and whether thinking, can he relate to these expenses and whatnot? maybe, maybe not at the cultural level but the kind of program he pushed for, medicare for all, massive jobs program, free higher education, these are things that would disproportionately help black workers. and i think it's an argument he could win in the black community and other communities through organizing. so often these things are seen as the verging whereas i think
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they go hand-in-hand. but to me that can be no antiracism and loesser did it with the question of registration pic if we're dealing with redistribution, dealing with the question of class. did it with the question of taking something from someone and getting it to other people. you are not talked about taking something from a diminishing chair of returns that are going to white workers and getting it to other people. you're talking but really taking on elites interest. i think that's what the rhetoric people are uncomfortable with. they are fine with diversity if diversity means destruction. they're not fine with diversity if it also means providing goods and services to those who don't have it now. not because of ideologically opposed to, not because it is ideologically racist tickets because it requires a cost, a cost there not willing to bear for anyone, be they white workers are black workers, latino workers. >> do we had some questions from the audience? anybody, questions? we have a question right here and then overh >> i'm wondering how you come have a very robust circulation and great magazine, but so many people are completely shut off
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from most political discourse. even within the ideological silos. they just maybe get a little service information, you want him or be because if you completely disavowed and don't want to do anything more. how can we break through the disengagement around politics, economics and just this feeling, i mean, i spent years as a few reporters only people just unplug from these debates because they fee >> yeah, i mean, a lot of it stems of the fact people to have a lot of time at appellate politics is working for them. so it's like the same discussion often happens with like voter participation. it's often framed in very apolitical terms just apathy, people don't care. as opposed to people weighing different needs they have in a limited amount of time and is not enough to vote because politicians haven't been serving them. i think the publication
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like "jacobin magazine" will be fundamentally a niche. i think it's a spark to start something broader that could actually be like appeal to reason. read a publication of the over 100 years ago that was number three or four in circulation the entire country. bigger than something like time magazine or the economist today. they had an white and working-class committee. they had a base. "jacobin magazine" has more of a base than your average socialist journal, but you know, just like the left as a whole, at the moment isn't deeply rooted in working-class communities. something like a silo. the socialist left, social movement and so working-class broadly conceived, right, as when the socialist movement that
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instructs you to have have the workers movement, it would arise socialist and that would have kind of a life of its own interaction. and out of the struggles of the working-class would arise the things were probably considered to be like social movements, right? and the fact that we kind of conceive of these things are separate things, i think is just a reflection of where we are at politically. that's the goal. the goal is to obviously reach and connect with people and have not just the people reading or receiving information, but actively participating in political processes that are generating these ideas. trent five -- "jacobin" is more authority of time to start this can think that that's something i'm very wary of, the fact the left also media general is kind of like a subculture. it's either like the new time circulation but instead he did demographic profile of the "new
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york times" they should still find it being disproportionate higher income and whatnot, which is completely opposed to the way you would imagine mass circulation newspapers used to be or could be when they actually have strength and relevance. i think it's a problem you can't solve my media alone. yet this solve by political organizing. there's limited amount we could do. i think the best we could do is make sure someone could pick up an article, an issue of "jacobin",," read an article and without knowledge people to get something from it. the way that i could pick up an issue of the economist and read an article and not have to ever read adam smith to understand, right? the idea, especially on the social side we expect people to be just jumping in at the very tail end of the conversation, instead of assuming people share our ethical and moral values. like i'm opposed as a said i'm opposed to exploitation. wise up at? these are normative arguments. one can disagree on one could actually say i am opposed to extreme versions of
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exploitation, labor and the danger so let's have this discussion. but i think everything you is assuming a lot of common ground that needs to be forged. >> in terms of your energy and energy of the magazine, are you putting that into the democratic party, or how do you think of, if you have the magazine of ideas and of socialist arguments, where does that transition into politics and power for you >> i think a lot will be up to organizer, people taking these ideas. i would say enjoy this new social emerging as an unused relationship to the democratic are similar to the relationship that's a libertarian of the 60s and 70s to the republican party. obviously in the project eventually more or less feud with national work queue type conservatism and developed current within the republican party. i think for the sake of our project, socialist politics will only be developed in a party rooted eventually in the working-class, rooted with different prerogatives of the party. it's hard is that we get from here to there. there's a lot of different arguments. a previous issue of "jacobin" basically argued what constitutes independent political action like social skeets talking about? if you
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have your own ideology,, if you connect with your own organization, the discipline, electoral efforts and candidates when you're elected, if the running of the democratic primary, is that independent political action. if i decide to run against others and its id so with my politics, with my base of support and funding as independent as republican, in my home district in new york, would that constitute me trying to be a republican and transform republican party? with that constitute independent political action? i think there's a way to understand the particularities and the conditions of use electoral system without going the old michael harrington route, which made a lot of sense at the time in the 60s and 70s, trying to transform and realign the democratic party. if it didn't work then with all those figures in the democratic party and with all the mobile and social forces i just can't see it working out. at the same time
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i know the last successful third-party effort eventually got us donald trump. but in fact, i'm open to different ideas. in other words, i see in the short term it's very hard for me to say socialist should be spending our time trying to get -- out of access when we could have easier access to primaries. but again it depends on the location. we shouldn't forget almost 70% i believe of elections in the u.s., local elections including almost everything west of mississippi, is nonpartisan, so this should be a crippling or paralyzing the bait. i think we immediately run candidates starting to question in these nonpartisan rac >> all right. >> i'm a lecturer at harvard law school. as we get ready to possibly have the confirmation of any supreme court justice, i guess i'm curious for your thoughts on the role of the courts and judges and legal strategy on the left. it's obviously the case over the back half of the 20 century the court played an important role in a lot of victories on the left. it's also true over the broad sweep of american history courts have often been incredibly reaction force and they still often are. i guess i'm if you
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think the court has a big role to play and what the political strategy is something we need to give up on and help they're not too much of a drag on effort, if there's something there, just what are your thoughts? >> yeah, i'm a rob hunter, on this particular idea, the role of the court systems and whatnot. overall, i find, i think the courts play a role definite article he to reshape america in a more democratic direction. obviously i think there's a role for a court system but i would just conceive of this role is being as follows possible protecting certain freedoms and rights and so on.
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but fundamentally, the way i see it extends freedom. but we're going to extend freedom by skirting on a freedom of some in certain ways. it won't be there for them to organize their speech or whatnot, but it will be their freedom, a dogmatic way to put it would be their freedom to exploit. let's put it differently. if you are running a corporation corporation, you obviously are under a lot of pressure, under pressure to make profitability and whatnot. so you might want your workers in a a down month to work an extra two hours. and, of course, you're paying them for these two hours. if the government says no, in fact, you can't work workers over 40 hours a week, if you need extra help you need to hire more people or whatnot, that's intruding on the scope of the freedom of private property or whatnot. but we think this extend more freedom to bore people. these workers at the excess proton, they can spend time with the family, pursue hobbies, they can watch tv, whatever else. i think, in other words, the court system will always dampen he's kind of things. the more interesting question is what would like jurisprudence look like in a socialist society? i think there's a need for it. the example of the 20 century, you know, is to be remembered, we should think about that we which social societies will need ended up in an judiciary that will play some role defending our freedoms and preventing certain tyranny. but as it is i am sure
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if we have this criticism i would love them more left-wingers appointed to the supreme court. i think we shouldn't think about model of politics to that. even if we can't imagine a robust court system written in the mid-20 century ushering in certain things, i think this will often be kind of gains from above that are then less sustainable than gains from below. >> we will go to jane back here. >> i teach at the kennedy school. a couple of times you've mentioned the word redistribution, and leaving aside the fact that was a bourgeois approach to the
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problem. it's not a very popular concept in the united states either. when i think of bernie sanders i think of him supporting work and workers. and so what do you think about redistribution? >> i am for redistribution of power, right, and for building social goods. and in the process of building the money necessary to get the social goods we will have to reduce to be wealthy but i agree with you, the redistribution of wealth is a byproduct of the policies i want picus unnecessarily the main goal. in the project of building up the power of workers is workers are able to press man's which redistribute wealth. i
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think of it not as the main effect. i would agree with the concept. i would also say this is the reason why i think the idea that federal job security is much more powerful and dangerous idea, and also more politically palatable than ideas that are now like a universal base of income. somewhat ideal scenario would be federal jobs guarantee, plus a basic income for those engaging in care work or other work or other work traditionally not valued enough by society, who are unable to work but fundamentally i think that we are concerned about power. that's what if more people are employed, labor markets are tighter and workers have more power at the point of production. and that's when 20, 30 people to make decisions that will impact thousands of people. that's why socialists always talk about workers and working class. it's not a moral category. it's not these people are more wholly or more deserving than others. it's just this is still the most powerful agent in society. and if you went over a majority of working class, this is a force that can like lift up all others, poor and oppressed people >> how do you think about the decline of unions in the united states? >> yeah, i mean, when i think of my most optimistic, i say the labor movement has been sort of objective basis. it's rooted in conditions that are not going to go away so it would always kind of rebuild itself. so as long as there's capitalism in these prevailing conditions, workers will realize they need to collectively bargain in order to push back against their bosses. they can't do it as individuals. some labor movement will always arise from the ashes. when i think more critically, i think the capital as always at its strongest when it can divide workers into small units as possible. so even having union centered around 10% of whatever is quite an accomplishment. and it took years and years and decades of struggle. and the
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idea that now with the soon to come,, public-sector unionism and whatnot, that this strength that we have in the public sector when the last movement was further eroded, it scares me and it makes me think that the project of creating social democracies only come to be that much more difficult and yes. and the project of creating a kind of socialism after capitalism that one is even further further away. i would say that some of this is self-inflicted, right? so unions have not done a good enough job engaging their membership and convincing people that there's actually a reason to be a part of union. it's been very transactional thing where people been tightly inside getting xyz benefits and paying this much induce, i have no real connection to any decision-making process in our union. i think that's very worrying anything to some degree this is almost deserve some of the downfall of american unions.
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my hope is to these rank-and-file struggles and unions will, in fact, convince people they have something to gain, they have invested interest in unit. even something like the fact that you might be a member of the union today because of the vote that happen three or four decades ago. there is some truth in right-wing arguments about unionization this as an that's fundamentally undemocratic, having the continuation repairs may be something fundamentally undemocratic about condition of employment having to be a union member, then having to have your dues deducted every month without you having any say in the matter and so on. europe, in europe unions don't have to rely on those mechanisms, right? i think fundamentally we need a more democratic labor movement. for now this is this is a labor union we have and it still the most organized and consistently progressive force in american politics. so i can't just put on every ideological hat and say
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let it burn, we will rebuild it. because i don't think we will be able to. at least in the next generation or two. >> so i want to follow up on the previous question about work versus goods or handouts, whatever. the trump come in the stump speech he gave in those...
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as a socialist, if you are willing to work with corporations, do negotiations, why wouldn't you and other socialists raise that same mss -- message? sorry. zach, shorenstein center. >> asked was willing to work with corporations i think speedy how about when to let them exist? >> ii mean, i would say, i means that something -- my vision socialism after capitalism, in the meantime in building
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harnessing to do that, i will settle for socialism within capitalism. but as a part of a workers vote and brought a political movement that does have the ankle of eroding the power of capitalist,, capitalism and transforming capitalism. fundamental i do think social democracy is sustainable. because capitalist come if that the power investment sold in their hands, they could always, when times get rough, the profitability is challenged, erode the gains we have. it's been kind of the comparison has often been to like hissy fits. rolen doubled up the hill only to see it fall down -- rolling the boulder -- so i will say that. in the meantime as far as working with corporations, the existence of society to building aovertreatment you're making
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demands on them. of that counts as we can with them that maybe but also you say like a hostage crisis like you work your way back, now, it's far as this broader question of work and rhetoric, it is telling you use the rhetoric of the american, whatever trump is thinking. i read, start talking much about the american worker then. but the american worker then. but then the republicans are trying to be an kind of like the party of the american worker, the american working class. they are resurrecting this rhetoric. they're combining it with policies that are opposed to american workers are not even saying there to be people. that to dupe people. if you look at trump with these proposals it's just like attacks on some of the very people that voted for trump right away with no particular reason. now, as far as the
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rhetoric, i think there's lots of ways in which merits, a in other words, it did rely somewhat on the makers and takers discourse. bernie sanders to talk about the hard-working american worker and american family that deserve more. i think the difference was who he said the taker was there he just had to take it was broadly the millionaires and billionaires. this is class antagonism is rooted in the socialist tradition. who work trump's takers? it was felons, undeserving illegals, all these other things, so don't like this comparison. i do like the fastest comparison or whatnot, -- fascist. the right is always appropriate aesthetics and language from that, from the left. as far as why the democratic party does use this writer, democratic party is concerned with being a governing party. they are concerned with
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maintaining this kind of broad difficult coalition and a half. it's often been put by others as democratic party is a part of american capital, therefore electoral recent have to return like it's not. that's a difficult balance and i think they constrain the rhetoric of the democrats. as far as the republicans can say whatever they want, i think at the end of the day when their elected, at least for the foreseeable future, markets will boom and confidence will be there. >> one more question. right here. >> thank you so much of the new and for organizing this. i'm christine jacobsen at a work in the library here at an have to report that we now subscribe to "jacobin." i was wondering if you could respond to a criticism that is a stroke limit of the socialist party in america,
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that, in fact, made a bernie sanders a few weeks early when he was here. and that is that the socialist party doesn't offer anything special to the black worker. and it seemed at a ticklish and what you think the socialist party is offering the black worker, kind of stops at expanding medicaid and addressing poverty, that was sort of bernie sanders platform. and so it's noticeable it stopped short of reparations. i wonder, you have to respond personally, but on behalf of the socialist party for whatever if you could maybe talk a little bit about that. >> the socialist party unfortunately split into three and then in the early 19 subject. on the vice chair of the democrat socialist america, which is now up to 20,000 members, one of the biggest things since the pre-christian speech communist party. -- khrushchev. often this particular language, they said
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nothing special to offer language is often littered, misquoted or misrepresented something once said by eugene debs were arguing with an actual racist within the socialist party, and this kind of range of people, the more social democratic right wing of the party based in the upper midwest. that's kind of, there's an article in "jacobin" about that. on the question of reparations, to meet an argument that exists purely in the political imaginary. so how does this look and practice? what kind of proof would we be asking for? would it apply to people who are, let's say, second or third or fourth immigrants from jamaica? obviously like suffrage from slavery and effects of slavery. but connected to the british empire, matthews. there's all these kind of
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questions that often makes it a purely rhetorical device. so what do we want reparations to do? we want reparations to uplift a historic injustice. if there's disappointed unemployment in the black community among black workers, then a full employment program has something special to offer to black communities that doesn't have to offer to white workers to have higher levels of employment. so it does have something special to offer but a lot of it is rooted in this kind of class demands. now, that's not to say that they shouldn't be particular organization done by black workers. not to say that black workers shouldn't at the moment or times organized under the own banner. often when did you they do so among a set of demands that its larger economic information. if you look at the black panther party can look at the part of black nationalism that moved to the left they all of her socialist ideas. so for them this wasn't a concern. to them their enemies
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were capitalists and political elite in the united states and abroad are systems of imperialism and oppression connected to capitalism. so for them didn't have any of these concerns. so i think it's a relatively, i don't think it's quite as long-standing of a comparison pics of the idea that like socialism doesn't anything particular to offer, special to offer to oppressed people would be a total surprise to the legacy of like even third world postcolonial movements that all organized under the socialist manner. at any point from the 20 century and onward there have been more black and brown socialist than had been white socialist or socialist in europe. i find that language just, that argument not very compelling. i do think there is
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a bright of antiracism that is leveled surely at the symbolic and representational sphere and physical to deeper issues of class. now if you're asking me should be elite in the united states be changed, 50% women and like the late temper some black and so on, sure, actually is. i'm not against those struggles. i think they don't go deep enough to actually fundamentally change things. >> all right. i'm going to just ask a couple posing questions. first i wonder what are you most worried about right now? >> besides the fact trump is president? [laughing] i most worried, i think the democrats initially drew some lessons it seems from the election. you see this even, chuck schumer is a good bellwether because this guy has total opportunistic to the point he cozied up to people like bernie sanders right after the election. i think when her revolution. chuck schumer would join us. just because he just wants the cameras and we have the cameras pointed at us, he will join us. [laughing] but now
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he simply backtracking that nobody is talking about russia, talking about like the cia, the last bash and since a democracy. -- bastion. i'm worried drifting away from this initial idea that the democrats were not doing enough appeal to workers. i also think the segment of this kind of liberal left that doesn't think this is also perhaps even to narrowly working-class euphemism for white workers. the problem is democrats have diminished earning and a diminished results of black workers and latino workers than everyone else. i think it's not just a cultural thing. it's not just like we were not out there like joe biden walking around with our sleeves rolled up or whatever. isn't just optics their message. it's your policies. actually show people that you want something different, he want something that will help their lives and
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are willing to take political cost in order to do it. and this is something that the democrats, mainstream democrats i don't think we will to do. i think a lot of the democratic base wants it and i think there are politicians and segment in the democratic party that could be one this sort of bernie sanders agenda. i will wrap up by saying who's the most popular politician in the united states? bernie sanders do is look at the response that even his speeches all run the country get in town halls and whatnot, you would see it. the republicans know it. everybody in american society knows it except for the democratic party. they are concerned. this quote reason by dimmitt -- lead democrats said the economic populism of bernie sanders will hurt them in more conservative swing states that they about the how to actually be paying attention to of the rhetoric that has been succeeding in these states? it's not that bernie sanders one overages liberals and these levels have become more left wing. no, bernie sanders bowls very well among moderates and
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independents and others. people are fed up with politics or don't associate like in europe social democracy with his old decrepit tradition but it's like this is a for summer for this, the sounds about right. it sounds about right that i shouldn't have to go into debt if something happens and had to go to emergency room. these kinds of things are common sense and to speak at the very root of someone's political police and sense of being. i'm worried about a democratic party that doesn't embrace this, and i'm worried about like even if let's say we have a cory booker -trump match up in 2020 that even if trump loses, which he has to i hope he wins that much of that of the trouble to live and, in fact, the only antiestablishment oppositional force. women at a time partial because they're very heavily depend on bernie sanders and were dependent on an excellent leader someone is
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getting older for my not be able to put up the good fight for much longer, at least at pace and intensity it and we need cultivate a new generation of leaders able to tap into what he did. >> if that worries you, what gives you hope? >> what gives me hope is the fact that i think we have a majority or a potential majority for at least the short-term demands that socialist have. it gives me hope that socialism now exists at least in peoples minds that isn't just a dirty word connected to the crimes of stalinism or with kind of an older not relevant politics. so it gives me hope we can build an oppositional moment in the long run. it's hard. what gives the more caution as i think we can win in the long run, but with climate change. there's also think that the man short-term policies solutions before things get on a worse course. and even though i think we are now becoming better position to influence politics over the
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course of 20, 30, 40 years with very far away from building the majority we need to usher in policies. that's a gap will havr away from building majorities we need to pressure in policies. that is a gem we will have to figure out a way to make up. >> thank you very much. [applause] we hope to see you next week. sarah lewis talking about arts, image, politics, and race. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2016]
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[captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2017] is on break for the fourth of july holiday but several members are visiting with home constituents. josh gottheimer visited his district, 79 towns. >> i just spent the morning here with deputy mayor beatty. we had a great walk around town, read to the bank, general store, showed me some of the historic holdings. his home is the second oldest in the town. two big takeaways on the day before the fourth of july. we want to go to hope as the last town and our tour. we believe our best days are ahead of us. in liberty, two minutes away.
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the better place to be on fourth of july weekend. here is what i learned today as we stopped at some of the stores. one, we have a huge broadband problem. we were supposed to facebook live but we could not get the connectivity we needed. even in the homes, there is not the speed. if you want to start a small business, it is really hard to make the case. it is really hurting the town. [indiscernible] so many communities across the district. we have lost several people here. son, recently lost a close friend. as we think about hope and liberty and how great our country is and how we need to focus on a better future, you hear these challenges we have.

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