Skip to main content

tv   QA with Brooke Gladstone  CSPAN  July 9, 2017 10:59pm-12:01am EDT

10:59 pm
going to, the rules committee that is, they are going to consider amendments on whether they are to be considered on the floor. we have been told to expect floor consideration on thursday and potentially a vote on friday, although that is in the hands of the house leadership. >> joe gould covers congress for defense news. you can read his reporting at and he is also on twitter. thank you for being with us. >> thank you. >> c-span, where history unfold daily. was created as a public service by america's cable television companies and is brought to you today your cable or satellite provider. tonight on c-span, "q&a," followed by theresa may taking
11:00 pm
questions from the house of commons. secretarytish defense michael fallon talks about military cooperation between the u.s. and u.k.. ♪ >> this week on "q&a," brooke gladstone discusses her book, "the trouble with reality: a rumination on moral panic in our time." brooke gladstone, in your new book "the trouble with reality." i have to quote you back. slippery than a dding."full of pu
11:01 pm
this is the smallest book we have ever done on this program in 28 years. brooke: i can imagine, there are not books that are much smaller than that. brian: what is it about? ruminationall it a because it is not even a complete argument. it is a summary of an argument. what it basically was was a response to the kind of incredible anxiety that people in my cohort, my eastern elite cohort were feeling. really, numerically, i think more than half the country feels. i realize the level of distress was so high that it went beyond politics or a president. it etched into the area of genuine existential dread. i thought, i want to know why, this time it is not so simple as just, it is donald trump and he just does not seem to know what he is doing. it seemed to be much deeper than
11:02 pm
that and that was my exploration. in this little book, i am taking people down the rabbit hole with me. brian: it is full of a lot of stuff, but why a short book, not expensive. why would people buy it? to be honest, i don't really process things unless i am writing or processing them. i think this is a malady of lifelong journalists. wnyc's book agent, the station where i work just showed up in my office and said, people are terribly distressed, we want something. i said, well, i will tell you something, right now it is close to the end of february. i will write this thing in two weeks if you promise to bring it out in two months.
11:03 pm
the world is changing so fast, i do want to process this. i want to set this task to myself and i want to see if i can come up with something, if not consoling, at least it can anatomize this great engine of good ifthat we all feel you define something, it is easier to manage. i wrote it in two weeks. they brought it out in two months, miraculously. it is short because it is dense. i went deep. my entire life is spent removing words from things. as the editor of my show "on the media," and all the text and everything you hear is boiled down to its essence. i'm very, very grateful for the
11:04 pm
time that anybody spends listening to our show or reading this book. honestly there is not a word wasted in it. we travel all through history. we go back as far as john milton , all the way to a happened a few months ago. hopefully you get a sense of what happened, why you feel so that about it, and maybe some hints of what you can do about it. brian: what do you say -- on this network we listen to all sides, to the person that lives in the red state that says "there they go again." she is new york centric, not a conservative, she has no idea why we like this guy. what do you say to them? brooke: it is an absolutely fantastic question and honestly, i do not get asked it enough. i am utterly transparent in this book. i talk about the anxiety that is
11:05 pm
felt by the non-trump voter. i talked about how he was perceived, and the foundational principles on which we all construct our independent bespoke realities. how those fundamental principles were violated, broken, did not seem to work anymore, creating this cosmic, primal scream of distress. i will also argue that you paste taste -- cannot your individual world back together unless you know what is going on in the other world. that there is a highway of infinite realities. as many as there are americans, as many as there are human beings, and what we saw was a colossal smashup on that highway. what i would say to the trump voter is, you want to know what is really going on?
11:06 pm
you want to go past the delicate snowflake, they lost, get over it? you want to see what is really going on with us? from somebody who has taken as far a distance away as she can possibly get. i try to go 1000 miles out. i am arguing in the book for people in my political cohort to do the same. i want to say, i am not -- i am a fair journalist. i never edit to win the argument. we always invite people on who disagree with us. we are respectful and we give our time. but i'm also respectful to the audience. here is a data point. here is where i stand. factor that in when you are listening to the conversation. this is an opportunity for people on both sides of the political argument to see why
11:07 pm
the nation is so divided. i am not even suggesting that we try to heal it. all i am suggesting is that we figure out what else is going on out there so that when we invariably go back into our bubbles, which we are biologically wired to create, we will make them a little sturdier next time because we are much more aware of what is going on out there. i am not asking anybody to compromise their values or beliefs. i am asking them to open their eyes to other people so that you can figure out your place in this infinite world. brian: where did it start for brooke goldstone? brooke: gladstone? brian: there is reality out the window right now. brooke: where did the anxiety start?
11:08 pm
brian: no, where are you from originally? brooke: i am from long island. my parents did the various jobs h middleere mostly lowis class. my father switched jobs and we were doing well for a while and moved to a much bigger house. i am one of six siblings. then he did terribly and we had to sell the house and moved to vermont. tripled the jewish population of the town we moved to in the northeast kingdom. i went to the university of vermont. my parents went from bankruptcy to bankruptcy and ended up incredibly happy in new mexico. brian: how did you get back to new york city? brooke: i took the long way around. after vermont, i moved to washington, d.c. i was there for 13 years and started out as the worst
11:09 pm
waitress the nation's capital has ever had. fired from every single job. ultimately, a customer got me a job writing. this was the 1970's. one used what worked. he is sitting outside the studio right now. we were very young and i started writing defense issues. he was working on the hill. from defense i went from job, to job, to job and it is a long story full of coincidences and happy chances. then i ended up in radio, which is where i belonged. because i was a theater major in college and i liked to write. it is a tremendously great medium for telling a story because it is so intimate. brian: how long have you done
11:10 pm
the radio show? brooke: i have been doing that show since january of 2001. quite a ride. brian: the gentleman you're talking about is sitting outside, your husband, what does he do? brooke: he has done many jobs. now, he writes on national nowl
11:11 pm
security and foreign policy for slate.
11:12 pm
before. that was dangerous. what he did was he offered a contrast between two different dystopias. "brave new world," and george orwell's "1984." which is flying off the shelves. struggling with how we got to this place where we do not understand what is going on in our own country.
11:13 pm
i came across the introduction in the fabulous classic called "amusing ourselves to death," and there was the orwell-huxley contrast. brian: i am going to ask you to read it. brooke: i think everybody knows that in 1984, big brother comes and takes away everybody's freedom. something very different happens in "brave new world." a place is created where compliance and complacency is coaxed out of the population. here is what postman said. orwell feared the truth would be concealed from us. huxley feared the truth would be drowned in a sea of irrelevance. huxley feared we would become a trivial culture. orwell feared we would become a
11:14 pm
captured culture. huxley said, actually -- i will skip down to here where he says, in 1984, people are controlled by inflicting pain. in "brave new world," they are controlled by inflicting pleasure. in short, orwell feared that what we hate will ruin us. huxley feared that what we loved will ruin us. brian: why did you use it? brooke: because, i set up, at the beginning of the book, our biological wiring. i wanted to show how we had evolved a culture that was designed to validate us and not to challenge us. certainly not to contradict us. it gave us the illusion that our realities were watertight, when really they were riddled with the weak spots and places that
11:15 pm
would crunch in. that this kind of collision, which happens periodically through history, and i talk about that, this kind of collision of realities or being faced with the fact that your sand that built on , happens periodically and happens for the same reason. because we are alone, because we do not see, because we embrace our blinders. brian: i wrote this down, fake reality begins at home. those are your words. brooke: that is right. not just at your home, but in your head. we are wired to feel the way we do. you see it in endless numbers of studies. when we are faced with a contradiction from somebody we have never trusted to begin with, our reasoning centers light up in our brain. there was a great study that showed this.
11:16 pm
if you are confronted with a lie, or misbehavior by a partisan, by someone who your worldview requires you to embrace, your reasoning centers do not light up. do. distress centers ultimately, until you figure it out how to accommodate this unpleasant information, generally by lying to yourself, once you have managed to accomplish that, the interior cingulate comes down and gets a shot of dopamine direct to your pleasure center. precisely what you get if you take cocaine. how do you resist? how do you stand in the face of
11:17 pm
the reward you get if you keep your universe consistent by lying to yourself? brian: who in your life, or the last numbers of years have you thought told the truth in politics more often than not? brooke: you know, it is such a funny question and i will tell you why. i think maybe you have done this to trick me. because i talk about what truth is in the book. the truth is not about facts. facts don't change people's minds. they have to be relevant and have to be consistent with the worldview people have or they are easy to reject. easier all the time for reasons i described.
11:18 pm
us truth for each of involves the weaving of the sceeenof the fact, of the with the unknown and the unseen. it is taking the facts of the known and unseen and marinating them in our traditions and values to create seamless structure. that is what truth is. basically you are asking me, who is a politician that best reflects my reality? which i believe, of course i believe is the right reality. every single person watching this now understands in a general principle what i am saying. but, again, we are not wired to accept the fact that we, ourselves, are susceptible to the same impulses i am ascribing to all of us. is, i am and i
11:19 pm
do, all the time, edit my world. you are basically asking me who is the politician that i most admire, the one that best reflects my view of the world, right? brian: i'm not sure i care if you admire -- brooke: but it is my truth. brian: but when have you had a sense in your lifetime, that someone was telling the truth? i have done a lot of research on the lies of president in the past. there are lots of them. i just wondered from your standpoint. brooke: are you asking about a president? this?sleeze out of brian: sure. with everything you have written, when have you believed in somebody? brooke: i guess when people risk things in order -- when they
11:20 pm
risk their political position in order to speak a hard truth, that is a sign to me that they are telling the truth and that they have skin in the game of truth. basically, i looked towards politicians who have taken risks. i do not know whether there is some kind of amnesia, but i am desperately casting about for one in the u.s. i am sure they are out there, i just cannot name them. they are not in office anymore is what i would say. brian: you have a letter from john adams to john taylor. i want to ask you about the first line of it. this is from john adams, december 17, 1814. remember, democracy never lasts long. you more than once in the book talk about democracy. brooke: democracy is what john
11:21 pm
adams is saying. he did not have a lot of true democracies to evaluate from. what he firmly believed is that when the people take the system , they are ashands likely as the greediest most terrible monarch to smother themselves and the good in the world. he did not have a real belief the way that jefferson did. that wisdom would always prevail. that if a truth is put in the same room as falsehood, truth will always emerge victorious. jefferson believed that, that is why we have a first amendment, which is quite unusual and unique in the world. john adams, alexander hamilton did not have that same kind of belief in humanity. they wanted the structure to work, but they also knew that democracy is just a machine.
11:22 pm
it is a template. it is a process. the success of the machine depends on its operators. if you have people who are listening to their better angels, who have values and principles and interests in seeing the machine work, interests that are greater than their own personal interests, it will always work for you. we are just human beings subject to the same frailties. if the wrong people get hold of democracy will not say this. you introduce us to a lot of people in the book. i am scattering through the process to get you to talk about them. who was hannah? i will show some video. brooke: she was a remarkable social theorist and historian who watched with the keenest eye
11:23 pm
imaginable what happened in the run-up to hitler's assumption of germany, and also stalin's. she picked out, very carefully, not just what they did and anatomize that, but to whom they did it and how they responded and why they responded. it is always a little nerve-racking, those of us who have been watching, even in this brief period of the trump presidency to use hannah to offer analogy's. , because that suggests that trump is hitler or stalin, or his followers or
11:24 pm
are nazis. i am simply not saying that. what i am simply saying is that a population in distress, that has been lied to so often, ignored so continuously will respond similarly to someone who comes up with a view of the world, a reality that seems to include them, to reflect them, to validate them and to redeem them. brian: this is a black and white video that comes from german television back in 1964. she speaks german. there are subtitles. i want to point out so the audience can be prepared to read the subtitles and we will come back to it. >> [speaking german]
11:25 pm
brian any reaction to what she just said there and how does it fit in with -- what was your thesis beyond what you just told us for using her in the book? brooke: it shows how close she was to what was going on there. there already was a very powerful anti-semitic tide. there always was a strain of it. in the wake of the first world war, the germans did not want to
11:26 pm
believe that they had lost militarily because they just lost. the theory came that there was a stab in the back. that the jews had served in the military, that the jews that lived in the country have betrayed them to their enemies and that is why they lost. so somebody like her could see that tide rising. she saw a great deal besides. she, in the origins of totalitarianism, we are not focusing on the victims, but on those who thought they would benefit from blowing the current system up and getting some of what they thought was their birthright. something they felt they had lost. and to change the direction of the future where they would no longer be the winners and beneficiaries of the system. to move it back.
11:27 pm
and of course, germany suffered horribly in the wake of world war i. giving rise to the impetus to begin world war ii. which is why after world war ii , we had a marshall plan. we would not make that mistake again. that was one mistake we learned from, which was a glorious thing and all to rare in our history. she saw what was happening. hitler could say whatever he wanted to these people because they needed an explanation for the struggles they have had to endure. and they needed hope for a new direction. much of the rhetoric was almost entirely the same. brian: let me read back to what you wrote. "if trump did not break the law, he clearly was proud of outsmarting it. owning up to ducking taxes,
11:28 pm
greasing politicians and much more. supporters praise this as true telling, which it was. the system was rigged but he knew how to game it and now he would game it for us." brooke: right. brian: you go on to say, "which explains why so many of us are still reeling." brooke: we always thought that if somebody behaved badly, even if they did not break the law, they would lose in the court of public opinion. look what happened to the republicans. every time trump did something like diss john mccain for having been a prisoner of war. i like people who don't get captured, he said. or diss the nation to the south, they send us their rapist and their criminals.
11:29 pm
or the "access hollywood" tape, for crying out loud. when does this guy stop getting a free pass? when do the norms that basically keep us civilized, that helped valuese us, a pool of that we can share even if we don't share political policies, when does that kick in? and it didn't, hence the distress. i think it comes from all quarters, not just liberal democratic ones. brian: what did you think of hillary clinton? brooke: i thought she was a problematic candidate. i thought she was a groundbreaking figure in many respects. but in breaking that ground, to be honest with you, i think that she was -- i don't want to use the word traumatized, but she was so affected by her savage treatment in her early years.
11:30 pm
beginning in the arkansas state house and the governor's mansion, every time she tried to exercise her intellect, to use her experience and apply her values, all of which i thought were exemplary, she became a hidden character. and if you hide and duck and deny -- look, people believe trump is authentic, they believe hillary is fake. i believe that she is private andhead put too much faith too many campaigns to the same people. we could go on and on about that. frankly, i believe that her past experience in breaking so many barriers rendered her incapable of reading this moment. brian: why do you think the people who do not like her
11:31 pm
thought she was fake? brooke: because she did not confront them. because she was not honest. i don't mean she lied any more than other politicians but she was evasive in a particular way. she would offer explanations. i mean, trump does the same thing, to be sure, but he was not forced to be so polished. he could be rude and crude and that would be well received. any woman who tries to do that is immediately condemned. it is certainly the case there is a double standard for behavior, and that an authentic woman faces tremendous challenges and so does an inauthentic woman. you have to figure out a way to walk a tightrope that is so impossibly fine it is almost impossible to keep your balance.
11:32 pm
person youher brought into your book, the mayor of charlottesville, virginia. we interviewed him on a book called "demagogue." >> a demagogue is a mass leader. the book offers a four-part definition, one of the few times anyone has defined demagogue for a while. i borrow elements from an 1838 essay by james fennimore cooper. they have four characteristics feared they are identified as a man of the people. they trigger great emotional reactions from the people. the third, they use of those emotional reactions for personal or political benefit. the fourth and most important,
11:33 pm
they bend or break established rules of governments or laws. difference is the between what we're hearing here of a demagogue between barack obama and donald trump? brooke: it is interesting. any successful politician has to incorporate several demagogic principles. the question is how do you use them and why? know, he for a long time, michael himself, resisted saying trump was a demagogue. he thought that he filled some of those but did not fulfill others. and then he decided, when he started identifying with the ,asses in the way he did insincerely for his own material gain that he had to turn into
11:34 pm
-- that he had to fall into the demagogue camp with regard to trump. it was hard for him because he is a politician himself. he knows if you cannot engage in motion, you cannot get elected. how.t is the what and you have to do it in a way that basically, you have to give a series of lies. you never tell the truth. it is all about manipulation. why is it so scary? why are we afraid of the word demagogue? from his struggles to define trump that way and i --ned to net present off turned to thinkprogress, who explains why it is important. if you give people the idea
11:35 pm
there is no reality to be known, it is simply an alternative fact, some information served you, some doesn't, the truth is a liar, don't pay attention to it, pick what you want and don't think you have any obligation to pay attention to the information that might be real out there. don't believe the engines of accountability. basically he says, that signals of the end of democracy. consensus is the bedrock of democracy. a depends on negotiation from pool of facts that you agree is true. but when truth is little more than an arbitrary personal there is no common ground to be reached, no incentive to look for it, and that essentially opens the door
11:36 pm
to authoritarianism. then it is just the role of the jungle. brian: i mentioned i had done some research on what other presidents had said and i want to ask you the difference. this is an article that "politico" put together on other presidents that did not tell the truth. in many cases, for instance, in 1940, franklin roosevelt surprised his speechwriter by telling a boston audience, "your boys are not going to be sent into any foreign wars." "in less we are attacked," and roosevelt offered, if we are attacked, it will no longer be a foreign war. woodrow wilson did the same thing.
11:37 pm
brooke: absolutely. jonathan did the same thing. say, ini was going to the other book i wrote, i spend t a long time on wars and war coverage. that is when the lies of our politicians and leaders become truly heinous. let's talk about the run-up to the iraq war. most of us can remember that. every, single president lies. if you want to ask me what is the difference between those guys and trump, i thought about this, and i have an answer. brian: go for it. brooke: here it is. generally, when our politicians lie, they do it to achieve a policy end. the lies are consistent.
11:38 pm
go back to the run-up to the iraq war. a mixture of wishful thinking and absolute mendacity created a reality that iraq had weapons of mass destruction and it was a matter of self-defense to invade hussein.e saddam home, when they were not being supported by the cia, cheney created his own -- and rumsfeld, kind of a intelligence agency where they cherry picked among various ideas to create a consistent reality that would drive the policy they wanted. inre is no consistency trump. he doesn't feel he needs it.
11:39 pm
he wants to assert, as another writer said, power over truth itself, over reality itself. to say it does not exist, it is not knowable, everybody has an agenda. the organs of accountability, the media that the founding fathers so believed in, are only special interests and enemies of the people, they have an agenda and it is not your agenda. you say they lie on an outcome on policy, here is a former president talking about it. >> i shall say it again and again. your boys are not going to be sent into any foreign war. >> the soviet union's relative power has been growing steadily in relation to ours. 1961,int i am making, by
11:40 pm
1962 and 1963, is a crucial time. i'm not sure we will be ahead of them. >> the use of weapons against united states in the gulf of tonkin have today required me to order the military forces of the united states to take action in reply. >> i want you to listen to me. i'm going to say this again, i did not have sexual relations --h that woman, miss linsky lewinsky. >> we will keep this promise to the american people, if you like your doctor, you'll be able to keep your doctor. if you like your health care plan, you'll be able to keep your health care plan. period. when richard nixon said he was running for president, he said i have a figure plan to win -- i have a secret plan to win the war. what have we gotten as a result in our society today with all
11:41 pm
these presidents telling us these things that are not true? brooke: there is not a society on society -- there is not a society on earth where leaders don't say things that are untrue. the goal is to make america work better. if obama suspected that the kinds of insurance plans that people had would go away, not be outlawed by the bill, but market forces would cause those plans to become unavailable or their doctors might drop out of the program, he did not say so. you know? he likely knew that was a consequence and it certainly was not in the bill, but it created an environment where that could happen. the missle gap. i am not an expert on this. i seem to recall that he may
11:42 pm
have inherited some bad information from his leaders. he may not have actively lied about it. that is to say, jfk. i'm not going to put money on it. there is a higher purpose. the difference is -- i'm not excusing that, by the way. i'm absolutely not. but the difference now is there seems to be no purpose except to further our president's view of himself. that is too short, too narrow a vision. everything he said recently in the wake of pulling out of the paris accords. i am not here for paris, i am here for pittsburgh. pittsburgh said we are not a coal mining city anymore. we employ more jobs in sustainable energy. there is only 50,000 people who
11:43 pm
actually work in coal. more people work at whole foods. it doesn't matter. his world, which can shift and move, seems to have nothing to do with an overall idea, with a policy or principle, with anything. it is just a chaos of the mind. that is what is so scary. in new yorku live city? brooke: i sure do, i live in brooklyn. there a time since donald trump was elected where you found yourself among your friends and they had the same intensity that you have in this book and say they cannot figure this out. does that have anything to do with you saying, i'm going to write this thing so people can understand, even people who agree with me can understand why we feel this way?
11:44 pm
brooke: have i felt that way? have i felt it from other people? even more than i have felt it from myself. because i tend to take a long historical view and i am of fundamental believe that whatever mess ensues in the next few years, the public will ultimately survive. though it will -- it may survive on different vegetables. we are not the same nation we work 200 years ago, for better or worse. where did i hear distress? everywhere. i have a regular game i play with a friend in boston. "words with friends". it is a kind of scrabble game you play on your phone. the day after the election she wrote in the chat box, i just want to die. there was not a single place, you could not block out the
11:45 pm
sound of terror if you had sealed your place with tape and sound blotting fiberglass. it was everywhere. it was a hum. the city was on red alert. and although everyone is getting used to it, that sense of stress does not abate because at some point it is not even about trump, it is about those foundational principles that got challenged, which is the subject of that pamphlet you are holding. brian: it is called "the trouble with reality." you mentioned marcia, wishing? -- who is she? brooke: she is a journalist who grew up in russia and she writes
11:46 pm
regularly for the "new york review of books." her insight has been stunning. when the rest of the media cohorts said it is not possible he could win, she said prepare yourself for his victory. then she accused the rest of the press corps, quite rightly, as having a tremendous lack of imagination. brian: here is what you said just recently -- what she said just recently about npr. it is a brief clip. >> the npr argument is that the e, that it of lif involves intent. npr does not have conclusive information on trump's intent. the problem is the euphemism
11:47 pm
implies trump took an accidental wrong stuff geared the word misstatement suggests a singular occurrence. the word misstatement applied to trump is actually a lie. brian: what do you think? brooke: i could listen to her for hours. i think she's brilliant and absolutely right. national public radio is taking a very narrow view statement by statement by statement. what she saw before the rest of us ever did is that the entire canon and endlessly generating engine of trump misdirection, of trump mendacity has an intent and the intent is to cast doubt
11:48 pm
on the ability to ever know what is true. to take control of reality itself. brian: you write, if you think i am cracking wise to make a point, you are mistaken. you had earlier said, there is never too rational people, there is one, and i am correct. you say, my facts reflect the world as it is. facts, as a rule, do not. i do not know the facts of his supporters, not really. i only know they voted for him, which is inconceivable to me. right, and then i explain inconceivable in that i'm not wired to conceive it. that ultimately is the challenge. you read the outrageous part. saying i was admitting,
11:49 pm
flat-out, i believe what i believe, and i do not understand what they believe but if i want to create a reality that will hold up under stress and will not leave half the nation and all of their realities in distress, then we have to understand what other people believe he cousin is the collision of their worldview and ours that created all of this flying debris where waiting for the wind to blow away. if we are waiting, it will be for a long time. the book is only been out a short time, what has been the reaction? i have not been trashed
11:50 pm
for bias and i think it is because people who think public radio is biased anyway, they are going to sigh. do i go screaming against the wind when breitbart says something outrageous or alex to chris weo wars are all being poisoned? expecton't, because i it. and maybe that is why the reaction i hear is all positive , because the people who expect me to be full of crap, they wasting theirer ink saying so. but i am transported -- transparent. talk about where i stand.
11:51 pm
--ake a clean breast of it clean breath of it and bring in my cohort and say we have to look outside of our bubbles if we want to feel comfortable in this world again. brian: is it my imagination, or am i noticing in the commercial mass media that they had been taking a more aggressive approach to donald trump than i have ever seen? brooke: right. donald trump was the first person to break the norms, the agreement to mediate had created midcentury, the style of cronkitety, the walter men from the clouds of style, who would never express an opinion, work in a consensus country. time,funny, up until the al qaeda make this short, up until the time of the creation of television, media got cheaper
11:52 pm
and cheaper and you could make money with smaller and smaller audiences. that whole process reversed itself when television came. it was so expensive and it came at a time when the country was in existential fear of the atom bomb and the russians. so, and not only that, since the airwaves were a limited resource, they had to deal with the government. the fairness doctrine. equal time and so forth. rules that we no longer have, mostly swept away by reagan. it opened up the way to am radio with rush limbaugh and ultimately created fox news. it was also a period when you youd find a center and if try to talk to the people on the margins, it would turn off all of your audience. so you ignore them. it happened in the cultural
11:53 pm
realm, as well. you never saw people with color inpeople of sitcoms. radio was far more democratic in tv was in then a 1950's and 1960's. that style lesson for 70 years geared suddenly there was a new technology that made everything cheap again. the internet. also, a complete lack of consensus geared we were not in existential fear anymore. the cold war was over. this change of the media, to get to your question, was inevitable in some ways because of this collision of politics and culture, but also on a more fundamental, i should say politics and technology, but on a cultural level, trump says i will not accept what your role is, media, in our democracy.
11:54 pm
i will not concede that you have a right to information, i will not concede that your mission is to convey information. i deny you three times. and the press, as jack shafer, ohe columnist for politic told me, they are like a hill of red ants. if you walk around them, it will be ok, if you kick them, they will be all over you. for the first time in a long time, the media believed they had a true mission and they believe they are incredibly relevant and perhaps the fate of the nation will hinge on what they do. incredibly media are polarized and don't communicate across worlds very well. but there is a possibility they may. there is a possibility facts may
11:55 pm
have meaning again. they have to do a better job of contextualizing them, making them relevant to the lives of the people the need to reach. i think there is a bit of a tallying game. i think we can do better making this facts matter. but they have a job now. brian: if you had to pin the best media organization in the united states, where you find you get the most information what would you say? ,brooke: that is not simply possible right now. i think one thing that every american who wants to understand how the world is moving knows is that you need to transformation from a wide variety of sources. -- get your information from a wide variety of sources. brian: where do you go? national review,
11:56 pm
commentary, i go to those places that are not in love with trump, but have policies that mainstream republicans would like to see acted on. which i don't like. i don't like those policies, but i feel at least we can share a about whattural norm is normal, civil behavior. it is a place to begin. brian: we have about one minute left. what would be your definition of journalism today? brooke: i don't think the role of journalism has changed. i don't think it is the role of journalists to carry a flag in the vanguard of the counterrevolution. i think it is the role of the journalist to tell us what is going on where we are not, to explain why that is of relevance
11:57 pm
to you, to lay out the stakes, to be honest and accurate. i don't think it means you have to be objective, you simply have to be fair. brian: last question, we talked about your husband, do you have kids: brooke -- kids? brooke: yes. twins. one lives in brooklyn, one lives in los angeles. if you want to know how this moment has affected them, they both are engaged in various types of volunteer work. they have never done this before. they contribute to causes they care about. in other words, they show up. and i think it behooves everybody who is worried about the direction of the country, no matter where you stand, i think
11:58 pm
it behooves everybody to show up. brian: the book is a tiny little thing, $8.95. you can probably get it less expensively on amazon. "the trouble with reality: a rumination on moral panic in our time." the author is brooke gladstone. thank you very much. brooke: thank you. ♪ >> for free transcripts or to give us your comments about this program, visit us at q& our programs are also available as he's been podcast -- c-span
11:59 pm
podcasts. >> if you liked this "q&a," here are others you might enjoy. david kay johnson on his book, the making of donald trump you'd also maureen dowd talks about the 2016 residential campaign and her book. and washington post reporter robert costa, who points out similarities between the presidential campaigns of donald trump and ross perot. you can find those interviews online at c-span's washington journal, live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. monday morning, dr. margaret flowers and michael kantor of the cato institute will discuss
12:00 am
the feasibility of a government-funded national health insurance program. also washington times political editor will talk about the trump fornistration's request voter information and reaction from state officials nationwide. we sure to watch washington journal live at 7:00 a.m. east turn monday morning. join the discussion. this past week at the british house of commons, prime minister theresa may was asked about the uk's role in combating isis and pay increases for public sector employees. this question time is 45 minutes.


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on