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tv   PBS News Hour  PBS  January 6, 2016 6:00pm-7:01pm PST

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captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> ifill: good evening. i'm gwen ifill. >> woodruff: and i'm judy woodruff . >> ifill: on the newshour tonight: north korea claims it has successfully tested a hydrogen bomb, as the white house and world leaders condemn the attempt. >> woodruff: also ahead this wednesday: how south dakotans are fighting back against payday loans with sky-high interest rates that leave many in a cycle of debt. >> i've had employee after employee after employee over the last three years in the coffee shop, going through horrible, horrible financial experiences, taking out these emergency loans. >> ifill: and, a macarthur grant winner who designs and builds furniture for those with disabilities. >> it makes the child, one, believe in their own capacity, and then everyone who knows and loves the child believe in what
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they're able to do. >> woodruff: all that and more on tonight's pbs newshour. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: ♪ ♪ moving our economy for 160 years. bnsf, the engine that connects us.
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>> supported by the john d. and catherine t. macarthur foundation. committed to building a more just, verdant and peaceful world. more information at macfound.org >> and with the ongoing support of these institutions: >> this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. >> ifill: the earth rumbled today in north korea with a big bang that shook capitals around the world. the communist regime declared it had carried out a thermonuclear explosion, which if it turns out to be true, would represent a quantum leap beyond anything it's managed before. the nuclear news was trumpeted on north korean state television. >> ( translated ): the first hydrogen bomb test was successfully conducted at 10:00
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on january 6th, 2016. >> ifill: state t.v. also showed photos of the north korean leader, kim jong un, signing orders for what it called a hydrogen bomb test. but the announcement -- broadcast on big screens in the capital, pyongyang -- was quickly condemned around the world, especially in china, the north's last major ally. >> ( translated ): today, >> ( translated ): today, north korea) carried out a nuclear bomb test once again, despite the international community's objections. the chinese government firmly opposes this. to fulfil de-nuclearisation, nuclear non-proliferation, peace and stability on the korean peninsula is china's firm stance. >> ifill: whether it was really a hydrogen bomb was also widely questioned, especially in neighboring south korea. >> ( translated ): judging from the measurements, it probably falls short of being a hydrogen
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bomb, although north korea claims it's a hydrogen bomb. >> ifill: in washington, white house spokesman josh earnest said the u.s. is skeptical, too. >> the initial analysis that's been conducted of the events that were reported overnight is not consistent with north korean claims of a successful hydrogen bomb test. there's nothing that's occurred in the last 24 hours that has caused the united states government to change our assessment of north korea's technical and military capabilities. >> ifill: meanwhile, japan's government immediately sent an aircraft out to collect air particles for radiation analysis. a working hydrogen bomb would be hundreds of times more powerful than what north korea detonated in three earlier underground tests. and, it might fit on a missile, if it was "miniaturized", as the communist regime claims. pyongyang has long sought to develop missiles that could reach the western united states. the u.n. security council branded the test "a clear threat to international peace and
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security" and pledged to pursue additional sanctions. secretary general ban ki moon: >> this act is profoundly destabilizing for regional security and seriously undermines international non proliferation efforts. i condemn it unequivocally. >> ifill: and u.s. presidential candidates weighed in, with democrat hillary clinton calling for new sanctions, and republican ted cruz saying the test showed the folly of failed democratic policies. a number of sanctions are already in place against north korea, an isolated nation with more than 12 million people living in extreme poverty. we'll examine north korea's claims about today's test, and what it all means, after the news summary. >> woodruff: and in the day's other news, the chief justice of alabama's highest court urged local officials today to deny marriage licenses to same-sex couples. that's despite the u.s. supreme
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court's decision in june to legalize gay marriage nationwide. state chief justice roy moore said the supreme court decision is at odds with his court's earlier rulings, and is causing "confusion and uncertainty". moore stopped short of directly alabama officials not to issue licenses. >> ifill: for the 62nd time, the republican-led house has voted to repeal president obama's health care law. but this time, it's going all the way to his desk. house speaker paul ryan conceded congress won't be able to override a promised veto, but he said it's worth the effort anyway. >> we are confronting the president with the hard, honest truth: obamacare doesn't work. higher premiums and fewer choices and restricted access, these are not signs of success. obamacare is not successful. they are signs of failure, and the american people deserve better. >> ifill: the senate already
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passed the repeal measure, which also cuts funding for planned parenthood. but massachusetts congressman jim mcgovern and other democrats said it's wrong-headed and a waste of time. >> i can't understand how you can get up every morning and go to work and that's your mission: to make it more difficult for people in this country, to throw 22 million people off the health insurance rolls. to make it more difficult for vulnerable women to get preventative care at planned parenthood. that's the mission. that's how we're beginning this new year. >> ifill: the bill would eliminate the requirement that most people obtain health coverage, and curb the expansion of medicaid as well as the taxes imposed to pay for the law. >> woodruff: the man who bought the rifles used in the san bernardino shootings pleaded not guilty today in a federal court in california. enrique marquez is accused of conspiring to aid terrorists, among other charges. his friend syed farook, and
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farook's wife tashfeen malik, shot 14 people to death at a holiday party in december. marquez goes on trial next month. >> ifill: there's evidence now that years of drug violence in mexico has actually cut life expectancy in the last decade. research in the journal "health affairs" finds the projected life span of mexican men fell by more than seven months between 2005 and 2010. 50,000 people died during that period, in mexico's war with drug cartels. >> woodruff: iraq is offering to mediate the diplomatic dispute between saudi arabia and iran. the saudis' sunni regime cut off relations with shiite iran last weekend, after attacks on saudi diplomatic sites in tehran and elsewhere, that followed riyadh's execution of a top shiite cleric. in tehran today, iraq's foreign minister, ibrahim al-jaafari, met with his iranian counterpart and talked of finding a way to restore calm.
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>> ( translated ): iraq is at the heart of the region and we have sought to use our broad relations with arab countries and other countries so that iraq can play its role and alleviate tensions between iran and saudi arabia. we have been active from the early moments to prevent a disaster from happening that could affect the entire region. >> woodruff: iraq's shiite-led government has relied on iran for help fighting islamic state forces. separately today, the white house said president obama spoke by phone with iraqi prime minister haider al-abadi on their mutual concern about the situation. >> ifill: germany now says a record 1.1 million people sought asylum there last year. about two-thirds of them came from syria, afghanistan and iraq. as the numbers came out, german chancellor angela merkel told reporters, "it is very important that we achieve both a noticeable reduction in the flow of refugees" and maintain open borders inside europe.
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>> woodruff: back in this country, republican presidential candidate ted cruz dismissed questions from rival donald trump about his being born in canada. the texas senator said it's settled law that having at least one american parent makes you a u.s. citizen, even if you were born abroad. cruz's mother is american, his father cuban. >> ifill: a state trooper was indicted for a woman's death after a traffic stop in july. he will face misdemeanor county of perjury for allegedly lying about how he removed the woman from the car. the grand jury denied to charge anyone with bland's death. >> ifill: a major federal assessment finds a leading class of insecticides can be harmful to honeybees in some crops. the environmental protection agency says neo-nicotinoids pose a significant risk to honeybees
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on cotton and citrus crops, but not on corn and berries. today's report is the first of four planned by the e.p.a. as it decides whether to ban the insecticide. >> woodruff: and the bears were back in charge today on wall street after oil prices plunged again. the dow jones industrial average lost 252 points to close at 17, 906. the nasdaq fell 55 points, and the s&p 500 dropped 26. >> woodruff: still to come on the newshour: a deeper look at north korea's power play. why americans are buying more and bigger cars. efforts to cap sky-high rates on payday loans. and much more. >> ifill: we return now to north korea's claims of testing a
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hydrogen bomb. siegfried hecker is former director of los alamos national laboratory, now a professor at stanford university. he has been to north korea seven times and has visited their nuclear facilities seven times. and wendy sherman was under secretary of state for political affairs during the obama administration. during the clinton administration she was a state department official focused on north korea. and she is now an advisor to the hillary clinton campaign. wendy sherman, how much of a threat is this latest test? >> oh, i think the fact north korea has conducted now a fourth nuclear test is a concern. i agree with the white house's assessment so far and i will be glad to hear what mr. hecker has to say that this isn't a hydrogen test, but nonetheless, four nuclear tests are of concern to us. >> ifill: the fact to have the test is more concern?
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>> a hydrogen bomb is much more powerful and we're concerned about miniaturization of the weapon so it might be carried on a weapon to south korea, japan or the united states. i think the united states and the world community needs to act with resolve. >> ifill: siegfried hecker, tell us what is possible for north korea to have pulled off in this case? >> it's not clear exactly what they did. as sherman pointed out, they did a nuclear test. my greatest concern is they did the fourth nuclear test. with that nuclear test, they clearly achieved greater sophistication and most likely meaning being able to make the bomb smaller, lighter and, therefore, have greater reach if they're able to get them on a missile. whether it was a hydrogen test or not, we don't know. my sense is we probably never will really know.
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so far from the information that's there, it appears the size of the blast -- in other words, the power from the seismic signal that can be measured -- it's about the same level as the third nuclear test in 2013, which with we put at the level of approximately a hiroshima bomb, let's saying 10 to 15-kilotons. now, whether it actually achieved the sophistication of going to a fusion bomb. the fusion or hydrogen bomb is a very big step technologically, and it's not clear that that was done, but we also can't rule out that the north koreans have made significant advancement. >> ifill: wendy sherman, we talked about the u.s. reaction. let's walk through some of the other intersectional reaction, especially china. in the past, they have been as protective of north korea as any nation. not so today.
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>> today they said they are resolutely opposed to what north korea has done and now we need some resolute action from china as well. it is significant and useful that the u.n. security council held an emergency session. the reports out of that session are that nobody objected to further sanctions, and ambassador power, the u.s. ambassador called for more sanctions and many candidates today who are running for president have called for greater action, and secretary clinton who certainly understands what's happening in asia has called for greater sanctions and to ensure, as i think we all feel, that we not allow north korea to black mail the international community but that we take resolute action to tell them this is not acceptable. >> ifill: siegfried hecker, let's talk about resolute action for a moment. a year ago, the president signed an executive order to freeze assets in north korea. i believe, as wendy sherman pointed out, is calling for resolute action, universal condemnation. what difference does that make
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for a rogue state like north korea? >> quite frankly, i think none. because we have been through this at least since 2003, when north korea pulled out of the nonproliferation treaty, and the attempt not only by the united states but by the international community has been, in essence, to threaten north korea, to sanction north korea, to isolate north korea, and it simply hasn't worked. i think we failed to engage north korea appropriately when we had opportunities in these last 12 or 13 years. whatever engagement was there didn't work. the bottom line is, over this time, from 2003, when they most likely built the first primitive device which they tested in 2006, until today, they have gone from building a device 2003, testing one that didn't
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work so well in 2006, so just now where they had the fourth test, the successful test, and, in the mean time, at the same time, they have scaled up their ability to make more bombs. so where we used to have a problem of having this country that could perhaps build a simple nuclear device, today they appear to have a nuclear arsenal. that's of great concern and, to me, that means we have to do something different than what's been done over the last 12 years. >> ifill: wendy sherman, we know kim jong un is a tough read and not many people have gotten inside to find out what he's up to. based on what we know, if what he was trying to do is provoke, what is that provocation intending to do? >> several things. firs, it's to bring together his own country to believe he is strong and powerful. he is still a young leader, he's trying to consolidate his power. he's done that through a tyrannical set of actions
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including killing off some of his closest advisors when he thought they were getting out of control and he wasn't seen as primary, so this is a way to bring his country together which we mind reprehensible but, nonetheless, he's taking the action. second, he's sending a message to the region and the united states to do whatever he thinks he will need to do to protect his country and he will not go down as other leaders have gone down around the world. i take seig's statements, and understand the frustration to get north korea to do something, but it takes a leader to will engage. north korea has not been willing to engage, though the united states and others have made many entreaties to them to do so, and secondly we have to get china, who has really one of the only relations left with north korea, along perhaps a little with russia, to not only engage but also to take tougher action to take away some of the goodies they still provide to
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north korea. >> ifill: finally, siegfried hecker, your take on kim jong un and if he is a real threat in this situation. >> i am just a scientist, so these diplomatic matters are certainly beyond my own personal reach. but the thing that seems clear in terms of the nuclear weapons piece of this is that north korea looks at these nuclear weapons as a deterrent. during all moif visits and the discussions with their foreign ministry and the diplomats rather than the technical people, they talked about their deterrent. so the emphasis was always deterrent, meaning deterring the united states from essentially, you know, going into north korea, or, as they like to say, you know, hostile policies. so i think we need to understand exactly what is the north korean security concern because, without getting over that concern, in north korea, the
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issue is much bigger than a nuclear issue and, so, focusing on the nuclear issue by itself is not going to be able to get us there. >> ifill: siegfried hecker, former director of the los alamos national laboratory and wendy sherman, many former titles, but former under secretary of state for political affairs, most recently. thank you both very much. >> thank you. very much, my pleasure. >> woodruff: 2015 turned out to be a boom year for the auto industry, despite some of the worst news about its practices in recent years. americans spent roughly $570 billion on 17.5 million cars and trucks last year, an almost 6%
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increase over the prior year, and breaking a record set 15 years earlier. but in the same 12 months, g.m. faced public congressional hearings and paid a $900 million settlement over its handling of a defective ignition switch. u.s. regulators recalled more than 19 million vehicles over faulty airbags, and volkswagen admitted to rigging diesel cars to pass emissions tests. some insight into this from david shepardson of reuters news service. he covers the automotive industry, as well as other regulatory matters. welcome back to the program. >> thanks, judy. >> reporter: so, david, should we be surprise this jump in auto sales last year? >> no, i think it's continue ago record-setting six-year trend. really the longest increase in auto sales since the 1920s, but says americans' cars in garages are pretty old, 11.5 years on average, and a lot of
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pent-up demand, plus low gas prices, low interest rates and a lot of good deals and americans are feeling more confident, unemployment declined, and all the economic independenc indicap boost sales have been in the auto company's favor. >> woodruff: but this happened despite the bad news about the industry. what does that say about consumers? >> it's pretty remarkable consumers shrugged off all the bad news and it's hard to keep it straight from the air bags to the fines for companies not disclosing defects and handling recalls properly not to mention volkswagen, takata and general motors. consumers separate that because in part they need cars and trucks and they're not going to wait for the industry to get all its practices back in a row. >> woodruff: but what does it say, i'm curious, in terms of
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the auto industry's advertising and reefing out -- reaching out? they were trying to put out good stories with all the other bad stories out there. >> right. we had a record 60 million vehicles recalled in 2014. last year, 2015, was the second highest. i think there is a little recall fatigue. americans can't keep tracks of all the recalls, there is an onslaught. so people said yes to recalls and yes there are issues but i still need a car and i'm still confident in my brand or the vehicle i choose to buy. >buy. >> woodruff: what's interest is the kind of cars they're buying. bigger cars, suv's. how do you explain that? >> not cars at all. car sales declined and suvs and pickups and crossovers have spiked dramatically. g.m. sold just 30% of all vehicles in the u.s. last year were cars and 70% were trucks, suv's and crossovers.
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because the crossovers are car-based suv's, get pretty good gas mileage but have the utility for people to haul more stuff, more kids in the back or dogs, what have you, people shifted away from cars and, as a result, it's a big concern will people be able to meet the fuel efficiency standards. remember the administration has proposed doubling them to 55 miles per gallon by 2025. >> woodruff: we know the price is down but these vehicles gobble up more fuel. >> they are more fuel efficient than predecessors but still use more fuel than cars. >> woodruff: what about the health of the industry overall? does this say this is an industry that's out of its slump and is going to stay strong for some time, or is this a temporary thing? what's your reading? >> it is a strong industry and all the analysts think sales in 2016 will go back up, though warning signs interest rates will start to rise again.
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there are a lot of used cars, because of coming off leases, that will go back on the market which is a concern, will used car prices go down, make people less likely to buy new cars. but the bigger threat is the massive disruption from silicon valley coming to the auto industry through google and tesla. >> woodruff: self-driving cars, cars with batteries, a small part of the market. >> right, but down the road, electric carbs, batteries with longer ranges, people feel more confident in buying the cars and presumably gas prices will go back up but the question is will people ultimately revice how they use cars, will they share cars in big cities, will they not want to own cars? cars sit and are not used 90% of the time, people are willing to share cars and actually not take it home from the dealership.
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so the industry is preparing for a major disruption in the way we buy cars. >> woodruff: presumably spending a lot of time trying to figure out the answers. >> and stay in business. >> woodruff: david shepardson, reuters. >> thanks, judy. >> ifill: stay with us. coming up on the newshour: life in mexico after deportation. and using cardboard to help children with disabilities. but first, payday lending is a $46 billion industry in the united states. about 12 million americans borrow $7.4 billion annually from over 22,000 storefronts. but the industry's practices have long been under scrutiny. special correspondent andrew schmertz has the story from south dakota, part of our ongoing reporting initiative, "chasing the dream: poverty and opportunity in america." >> reporter: living paycheck to paycheck isn't easy.
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sometimes you have to come up with creative ways to relieve the stress. >> a good way to live in denial is just to throw away your bills. "well i can't pay 'em anyway, so." >> reporter: kristi mclaughlin and her husband t.j. were getting by on t.j.'s salary as a manufacturing plant manager here in sioux falls, south dakota. that was until t.j. got sick. >> i was working the night shift and i was on my feet a lot. i had a couple of wounds start developing on my leg. they were pretty small at first, and then they got infected and just started growing. >> reporter: when t.j. went to get treatment, the doctor said it would only take a day, but he ended up missing a whole week of work. >> they ended up docking my pay, we ended up being short on bills. i panicked. >> reporter: so mclaughlin came here, a title loan place just a few miles from his home. he says the process was simple and quick. they inspected his car and then
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handed him $1,200 in cash. he agreed to pay $322 a month for a year. >> i was making good money. i didn't really foresee a problem paying it back at that time. >> reporter: but then his leg got worse and he had to go back to the hospital for another week. >> and on wednesday of the following week the h.r. person called from his job and fired him, and on that day we pretty much lost everything. >> reporter: but not the loan. after nine months, the total amount they owed grew from $1,200 to over $3,000, at an annual interest rate of more than 300%. title loans and payday loans are supposed to be a short-term quick-fix for people who can't get traditional credit. >> do you need fast cash? you've come to the right place! >> reporter: they use high- energy commercials and bank-like storefronts to entice people to borrow money at triple digit interest rates. the problem: they are rarely "short-term". borrowers frequently need to
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take out a second loan to pay off the first one-- it's called "flipping". >> the average payday loan in the united states has flipped eight times. they are a debt trap that's intentionally marketed to the financially unsophisticated, intending to lock them in on something that they can't pay back. >> reporter: former state lawmaker steve hickey tried to rein in the industry-- which charges an average of 574%-- with legislation to cap interest rates. but he could never get his bills out of committee. >> just not much stomach in the legislature because the financial sector in our state is such a huge deal. there's millions and millions at stake. >> reporter: south dakota has been the epicenter of high interest since the 1980s when the state repealed laws capping rates to attract jobs from credit card companies like wells fargo and citibank. >> the purpose at that time was to bring in 400 citibank jobs, not to bring in 400% interest rates. >> reporter: hickey wasn't alone in recognizing the problems created by these short-term loans.
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steve hildebrand runs josiah's coffee shop here in sioux falls. he's seen the detrimental effects of these high interest rates first hand. >> i've had employee after employee after employee over the last three years in the coffee shop, going through horrible, horrible financial experiences, taking out these emergency loans, and just getting into this terrible cycle of debt that is incredibly hard for them to get out of. >> reporter: hildebrand, an openly gay democrat who worked on the obama campaign, didn't have much in common with hickey, a republican and conservative christian pastor who has railed against homosexuality, but they did see eye to eye on what they consider predatory lending. >> we created a campaign called south dakotans for responsible lending where steve hildebrand is the chair, and i am the co- chair. it's brought people on the right and the left together, in a very healthy way. >> reporter: they decided to use a tactic that was born right here in the mount rushmore state in 1898: the ballot initiative. >> and you're registered to vote here in south dakota? >> yeah.
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>> reporter: reynold nesiba is a volunteer gathering signatures to put a measure on the ballot that would do what lawmakers could not: cap interest rates on all loans at 36%. >> and i feel so strongly about this that i'm the treasurer of this campaign so that's my name on the bottom. if you're registered to vote, i'd love to have your signature. >> reporter: the goal: to get well more than the 13,871 signatures required to put the issue in front of voters next november. with millions of dollars in revenue at stake, the lending industry is strongly opposed to any new regulation. two thirds of u.s. states allow some form of high interest rate loans and when similar initiatives have sprung up in other states the industry has fought back. putting forward an 18% rate cap to convince people rather than the 36. >> by that issue only caps rates
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at 18% unless the borrower agrees to another rate in writing meaning if the borrower wants the loan they have to agree to whatever terms the lender demands. >> so the 18% rate cap is just a fake cap. >> reporter: teams of paid circulators have been out across the state gathering signatures for that petition. none were willing to speak with us on camera and repeated requests for comment went unanswered. when asked about capping rates at 36%, the one payday lender who did speak with us was unequivocal. >> it's a "kill-bill" for the state. the entire lending industry would be out of business with it. >> reporter: chuck brennan, a sioux falls native, is the founder and c.e.o of dollar loan centers, a chain of more than 90 short term lending stores, with 11 locations in south dakota. >> we have a huge customer base. in south dakota we've had over 40,000 applicants for loans over the years. over 20% of the state is over 18 who is eligible for a loan, has applied for a loan here, not alone the competitors, which really shows there's a need for the product out there. >> reporter: further, brennan
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says a rate cap will actually harm the people it is intended to help. >> it isn't like when the industry goes out of business people are going to stop needing money. they're going to have to turn to online loans, illegal sources, and something that the state can't regulate. >> reporter: but hickey says in reality there are plenty of ways to help people who need money without charging them triple digit interest. >> as an employer with employees, i would give a payday advance. i know steve hildebrand does at his coffee shop. he will lend somebody money on their paycheck at 0% interest and maybe there could even be regulation on that. four times a year, it's an employee benefit. >> reporter: after months of hard work, the campaign gathered over 20,000 signatures for hildebrand to deliver to the secretary of state. but the opposing lender- supported campaign also managed to gather enough signatures to get on the ballot. >> the payday lenders are going to spend millions of dollars on television, trying to confuse voters and misrepresent our side. >> reporter: so the fight's not over. hildebrand has one year to convince south dakotans to vote
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for his interest rate cap. in the meantime, t.j. ended up losing his fight to save his leg. it was amputated six months after he lost his job. >> it needs to go at least to there. >> reporter: t.j. and kristi are now focused on rehab instead of the title loan. >> i told them to come and get the car, take it. you know, our world has fallen out from underneath us and if you want it that badly, come and get it. >> reporter: over thanksgiving, the lender repossessed their car. >> people get sick. and you know, if it's serious enough they can lose everything. we lost everything in a matter of a week, it seems like. >> reporter: t.j. and kristi may have to find their way out of this devastation on their own. but they hope by speaking out, they can at least save other south dakotans from becoming trapped in a nightmare of high interest rates. for the pbs news hour i'm andrew schmertz, in sioux falls south dakota. >> ifill: now, hari sreenivasan takes a broader look at the
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problems lower-income americans face when it comes to getting the money they need. >> sreenivasan: south dakota isn't the only day where payday loans are a problem. while strict regulations are placed on threnders they're ubiquitous in most of the country. in fact there are more payday lending store fronts than starbucks and mcdonald's combined. in her book how the other half banks, this author explores the booming industry providing financial services to the poor at exorbitant costs and offers more equitable solutions. thanks for joining us. where is this gap created? why isn't there an incentive for banks to reach out to all with new money? >> the gap is new. in the '80s communities started shutting down branches in inner cities neighborhoods where profit margins were lower than other areas. part of it is the higher cost to
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lend to someone or take a small deposit than it is to get a big deposit. your overhead is the same whether you're, you know, taking in $100,000 versus $500, but your revenue off that $100,000 is much higher than it is off that small deposit. and so, these banks started leaving these areas and part of it is the government deregulatory forces allowed them to merge and forge huge conglomerates such as bank of america. as the banks leave they leave a boyd for banking service that is quickly filled by fringe lenders, so payday loans, check cashing. >> sreenivasan: when you go through certain cities like where there are food des rts, seems like there is bank deserts where it's popular with the lenders you're talking about. how much money is there to be made? >> $89 billion industry yearly. it doesn't seem that way. when you go into the neighborhoods, the check casher,
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payday lenders, they seem like neighborhood joints but they're really multi-national corporations. they're large, very profitable organizations. they have what they call a facade of informality, right, so seems, look, they speak your language, they're in your neighborhood but, really, behind them, there is a lot of financing and corporate, big firms. >> sreenivasan: these companies will say, look, i'm taking a greater risk, this is a person who is not as credit worthy who maybe walks into a bank of america with much lacker amount of assets so shouldn't i be able to charge a higher interest rate to get them this money fast? >> it is certainly a hiring risk to lend to someone who's low income. however, there is lots of studies to show that the price they're actually charging isn't the cost of the loan. it's also fairly misleading when you compare it to the credit markets that the middle class and higher income have access to. one to have the bigger points to have the book is even assuming that this is a market price that
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they're charging and it is the cost of credit because to have the risks and defaults, et cetera, the rest of us don't pay market prices for credit. the credit markets, whether for mortgages or student loans, any sort of bank credit you get is heavily subsidized by the government. >> how the other half banks. thanks for joining us. >> thank you. >> woodruff: the u.s. department of homeland security conducted a series of raids over new year's weekend on undocumented immigrants in a number of states, including georgia, north carolina and texas. federal officials said they've taken more than 100 people into custody, most of whom arrived in the u.s. within the past two years, and are now awaiting deportation. but immigration groups are fighting back, and the nation's
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highest immigration court issued a ruling last night to delay some of the deportations. even before these moves, hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrants were being deported annually. and for those who grew up in the u.s., that means they find themselves living in what feels like a foreign country. special correspondent frank de sam lazaro reports from mexico. >> reporter: miguel ramirez works in mexico city and an almost daily ritual is to call his mother in st louis. he lived there too, until he was deported three years ago-and banned for life from ever re- entering the u.s. >> she's-- she's devastated, you know. >> reporter: the shy 23 year old, brought to the u.s. by his mother as a young child, admits he fell in with the wrong crowd. he got caught in a burglary and his sentence was community service, until... >> i get a note from the judge
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telling me that because you're an illegal immigrant you don't qualify for this program and you're going to have to start doing your time. >> reporter: most of his time was actually done in immigrant detention centers before he was dropped off at the mexican border. >> that to me was rough, one of the roughest things ever. but i mean, i had to accept it, i had no choice. >> reporter: ramirez is one of several young mexican deportees profiled in a book called "los otros dreamers" by scholar and social activist jill anderson. some have committed felonies, she says, but the vast majority have no criminal history or just minor infractions. >> for many it's-- it's contact with their local police for anything from underage drinking, accusations from a neighbor or friends. one young woman was babysitting and had a problem with the family. >> reporter: in 2012, president obama issued an executive order that allowed the children of undocumented workers-- many of
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whom had grown up in the u.s-- the option to remain. >> specifically for certain young people sometimes called dreamers. >> reporter: the order came after congress rejected similar legislation called the dream act. and it came after perhaps a half million young mexicans were either deported or chose to return. >> this was a cute guy i had a crush on in my freshman year. >> reporter: viridiana and maggie belong to los otros dreamers, or "the other dreamers," a group that mostly meets online, brought together by anderson's book. growing up in iowa, viridiana says she felt no stigma over her illegal status. >> my parents always told me never to tell anybody that we're here undocumented. i mean, at first it was kind of like, i'm young and who cares? like i mean, what's wrong in being undocumented? >> reporter: it was no big deal, growing up, until. >> dad goes to work one day and... >> never comes home, they went to his workplace and they took
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him. >> reporter: 22 years after he arrived and settled quietly in small town iowa, juan vargas was arrested and deported. that brought abrupt, wrenching decisions for others in the family. >> my older sister, she decided to stay in the united states, and i totally understand that. it is my home too. i do miss it, but you know, i would rather stay with my parents. >> reporter: vivivienna quit her job and with her mother returned to mexico, against her father's wishes. >> he said, "i don't want you here," i don't want you to be here, just stay home." >> reporter: 25-year-old maggie got the same advice from her parents. home for her was dalton, georgia, where she too felt no different from her wide circle of friends until high school. >> i wanted to drive, i wanted to go to work, i wanted to find scholarships. that's when things started to--
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wait, so you're different? that's when i started to actually recognize i was undocumented and that i wasn't-- i didn't have the same opportunities. >> reporter: lacking money to go to college or get a legal, good paying job, she decided-- agonizingly-- to move to mexico, a country she'd left at age three. >> my parents stayed. i came by myself at 18. and it was during this month, it was like if somebody had died inside of me, because it was like okay, bye house, bye church, bye friend, bye school, bye dog. i mean, i wasn't prepared for it. >> reporter: mexico wasn't prepared for her or other returnees either. until recently, u.s. education credentials were not even recognized. aside from official indifference, viridiana says there's social stigma and suspicion that they are criminal deportees. >> "why are you back?" that's like the first thing they ask. they treat us like crap.
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>> they realize, "wow, i thought i was mexican, but now that i'm don't talk like a mexican because of my accent and when i speak spanish, people actually you know will call me pocho or gringo, and question as to why i'm even here. >> reporter: there is one industry that is happy they're here: call centers, whose operators speak american english. >> i get to meet people6 from all over the united states when they call my employer with their customer service questions. >> reporter: it's one of few places where returnees can find work. they even waived the requirement of a high school diploma for miguel ramirez and he says pay a decent wage. >> this job is very tedious.
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you feel like you're getting nowhere. it doesn't make you feel very successful or proud of myself. i want to do something more. >> reporter: call centers do report a high turnover. and living in mexico, where many people struggle with life's more basic needs, vivivienna says it was hard for her to deal with what she saw as trivial concerns. >> i couldn't handle the calls. i was like, "oh my god, these people, why are they just complaining about their dish service." like, really? so i'm just like, man, like, i used to be one of those people, like that really bothers me and i cannot do this job. >> reporter: she now works as a transportation dispatcher and lives with her parents. her mother, patrice hidalgo says on a fraction of their former income, life is difficult. >> ( translated ): here because of my age i can't get a job and the security situation is not good. it's much worse now in mexico
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than it was before we left. >> reporter: and the security situation along the migration routes to the u.s, now overrun by gangs trafficking in drugs and people, keeps many from fleeing mexico again. >> do you ever contemplate going back to the united states illegally? >> i do, i do contemplate it. not a lot because it's a risk, >> reporter: for her part, maggie got a job teaching english and attends college, hoping to get into tourism promotion. >> i want to travel more in this country. i know it's beautiful. i know it has many positive things. and i'm starting to see that beautiful side of mexico. >> reporter: and she plans to visit the u.s again and often- only now with passport and visa. for the pbs newshour, this is fred de sam lazaro in leon, mexico. >> woodruff: fred's reporting is a partnership with the "under- told stories" project at the university of st. thomas in minnesota.
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>> ifill: now to an inspiring story about one of last year's macarthur grant winners, and how design can change lives. special correspondent jackie judd reports for our "breakthrough" series on innovation and invention. >> reporter: in the hands of alex truesdell, a simple piece of cardboard turns into a world of possibilities. her life's mission began by accident. truesdell was rooting around in a closet, at a school where she was teaching, and found a chair that had been made for a disabled adult. >> the armrest and the footrest on it were actually at different heights on the left side than the right side. and i asked about it, and they said oh that's made of cardboard. and i think my head exploded.
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>> reporter: why did your head explode? >> the idea that you could take that material and turn it into what you needed. that if you needed something, you could make something. truesdell has been "making something" ever since with her triple-ply cardboard, glue and simple tools. in new york city at the adaptive design association , which she founded, cardboard furniture and learning tools are built for children with disabilities to help them realize their potential. >> it makes the child, one, believe in their own capacity, and then everyone who knows and loves the child believe in what they're able to do. i think it upends the prognosis. because so often, unfortunately, the word "disability" signals broken, can't, isn't. >> reporter: creating this very individualized furniture often involves a house call. in suburban new jersey, 21-month old austin kellenberger is getting his first fitting for a chair and table. >> austin has significant motor
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development issues. he has difficulty even moving his arm. >> reporter: today, even as a toddler, dad john kellenberger says, austin feels apart from his twin brother and older sister. >> oftentimes my other son, dylan, and my daughter savannah, will be playing at the table with toys. he's not able to do that. so you do see he is very frustrated, he wants, he's a very social boy. he wants to be part of the group. >> reporter: this furniture is supposed to make that possible, to make austin feel less different and to build his physical strength. >> right now he fatigues quickly, but he hasn't had the right chair in order to build strength. so the angles of this will actually give him a bit of a challenge. >> reporter: cardboard is relatively inexpensive, readily available and really sturdy. a trifecta for growing kids and
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for families, often burdened by medical costs, who are asked for contributions of just $500. austin's chair is measured, and measured again, and cut to within an eighth of an inch, so it is just exactly right for the little boy. >> we need a custom fit in an off-the-rack world. and if it doesn't fit, if the child struggles, and they're already struggling, it has, it's going to use up that energy and be discouraging. and then they or someone else will give up, and get the wrong idea about the child's potential. as opposed to being inspired enough to change the thing, change the environment to make it work. >> reporter: truesdell saw that happen in her own family and it was a life changer. her uncle turned conventional household tools into something her aunt, who had lost the use of her hands, could manipulate. >> my uncle was able to re- purpose things, bend things that were too straight, cut things that were too long. connect things.
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and that thought, that you could engineer change to suit her specific needs, is really the root of this. >> reporter: this workshop has turned out 200 pieces this year for over two hundred new york area children, but many more could use them. so, truesdell and her team spend as much time teaching as building. in the last several years alone, they have led several hundred design workshops and answered inquiries from around the world. as a result, these cardboard creations are now being built at about half a dozen locations in the u.s. and in countries as diverse as india, romania and peru. the materials we use, we want the people to see watt we do and copy it. we would inspire imitation, cooperation and collaboration throughout.
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>> trutshe met new york city teenager hannah as a toddler. when hannah's mother tracy was struggling to find a chair in which hannah could feed sitting up. >> she couldn't do any of those things, and she was much too small for conventional wheelchairs. >> reporter: so there was nothing you could have ordered online, or gone into a medical supply store and say, "that's what i need, that's what would help her." >> no, absolutely not, because she was so young. >> reporter: ehrlich has lost track of all the pieces truesdell has made for hannah, and even some for her sisters so the family feels bound together instead of separated by hannah's challenges. but, some pieces stand out, like the bike, the scooter and a beloved rocking chair that hannah can get moving on her own. >> the experience of moving herself at a speed as often as she wants, that she can choose it, that it's one thing she can really control every day.
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>> i think that all of the different pieces of equipment have opened up the possibilities for her, the opportunities for her to interact with her world, interact with the people who are around her. >> reporter: in new jersey, austin kellenberger is just beginning to interact with his world. his furniture has been delivered and what most see as a simple chair, his parents john and danielle see as transformative. >> i want austin to reach whatever the potential that he has, i want him to reach that. i don't know what that is. the doctors don't know what that is at this point. but whatever it is, i want to give him every chance to meet that. and this is one of the- frankly this is one of the things that's helping us do that. >> reporter: alex truesdell started out as a teacher for the blind. what she has done is let children-thousands of them-see and experience movement, growth and confidence, all through a simple piece of cardboard and a lot of ingenuity. this is jackie judd, in new york, for the newshour.
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>> woodruff: and now for our newshour shares, something that caught our eye that we thought might be of interest to you too. the u.s. geological survey on tuesday released its first-ever digital map of the nation's northernmost state. in vibrant colors, it reveals thousands of alaskan geological details that can be used to contribute to mineral, energy, hazard, and other types of scientific assessments. shades of red represent areas where rare earth elements, like those used in electronics, are most likely to be uncovered, while green represents the rocks where most dinosaur fossils are found. it took frederic wilson, along with a team of a dozen unpaid, retired scientists, some 20 years to create. they drew on more than 750 references, some dating back to
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the early 1900's. scientists say a map like this could help identify new earthquake fault zones, and help the oil d gas industry scope out their next big find. >> ifill: that's cool. on the newshour online: el nino may be bringing wild weather to the u.s., but it could also bring tropical diseases like the mosquito-borne dengue and zika viruses. how do warmer conditions affect the rates of disease, and which areas are most susceptible? read the second in our two-part science series. that's at: pbs.org/newshour >> woodruff: tune in tonight, on "charlie rose", actor samuel l. jackson on quentin tarantino's new western "the hateful eight." >> woodruff: and that's the newshour for tonight. i'm judy woodruff. >> ifill: and i'm gwen ifill. join us online and again here tomorrow evening. for all of us at the pbs newshour, thank you and good night. >> major funding for the pbs
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newshour has been provided by: >> bnsf. >> supporting social entrepreneurs and their solutions to the world's most pressing problems-- skollfoundation.org. >> and with the ongoing support of these institutions >> this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.
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>> announcer: this is "nightly business report" with tyler mathisen and sue bettherra. >> stocks slide, china weakens global markets. food issues are at the center of a criminal investigation. >> you're hired. private payrolls rise, a positive sign for the job market, but is it just a matter of time until the troubles overseas hit our shores? all that and more tonight on "nightly business report" for january 6th. >> good evening, everyone. welcome and glad you could be with us. not such a good start to the trading year, in fact, the worst since 2008 in the midst of the great recession. in the past three sessions, the dow jones industrial average h

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