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tv   Book TV  CSPAN  April 26, 2010 1:00am-7:00am EDT

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to talk to several authors and listen to several panels. we will kick off with tammy bruce. economy. joyce appleby, roger farmer, steven hill and matt miller are the authors on that first panel and then about two hours of college with three south lawn, author of young fundamentalism. following that in about two and a half hours, live coverage of another panel entitled what we'd don't know hurt us. as selling author charles bowden will then join us to talk about porter violence in his latest book murder city. and about 5:00 p.m. eastern time, another author panel, this woman middle east politics. and finally, roxana spirit will join us on our site to talk about her captivity in iran. so that's our lineup for today. you can watch the tv on c-span 2
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or you can watch our coverage live on line at booktv.board. either way, you can also follow schedule updates from "the los angeles times" festival of books and get the tv updates on twitter. twitter.com/booktv is our address and i would add that if you're in the l.a. area, the c-span bus is here and were handing out the next. so stop down at the ucla and say hi. joining us here and are sent from outside of himself on the campus of ucla is radio talkshow host and author, tammy bruce. tammy bruce, have you ever been invited to do the only times festival interestingly no. my books have done while a and i've never been invited to be on a panel. >> why do you think that is? >> i was the president of los angeles now through the 90's and the most part and i think when there is a transition like i have made in a city that is
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liberal you tended to become like an apostate if you will but it's important as an author that there's a lot of the news we can talk about our books but i have been here anyway courtesy of c-span2 see the festival and at one point introduced her for the speech so it is something i take in stride and it's not surprising but you better change and they will see. >> and she is a friend of yours. she did before word to your book. >> interestingly in my transition from being a liberal to in independent conservative it was her experience that for that book he will when she was under attack by what i called the gestapo is that she said something, had an idea or was conveying the catholic church for which she not only came under fire but there was a project to effectively destroy
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her career for having said the wrong thing and that was really the certainly we see it today still happening with the effectively merging dustin oppose but it's important for me as a liberal at the point to address that issue because it is and what any of us had in mind when it comes to the issue of discussing ideas and approaching difficult issues. i founded the emerging and that is my first book. >> what is the new american revolution about? >> it's more a head of the curve that i thought it might be. it was about the message of the second george w. bush victory. john kerry spend $100 million more than george bush in the 2004 election and it struck me at that time as i realized now an inclusive framework that the
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american people were not willing to accept business as usual. what i did know is george bush would do such a genetically bad job in the last half of the second term that trend would continue manifesting in but unfortunately was the obama victory as well, so american i think we have seen since 2004 have been saying we are tired of business as usual. the election of bush signified that in the middle of the war and in the election of obama signified and now what american people are seeing is neither party has been honest, neither party has had the nation's best interest in mind in the third step that multi-party movement and this remarkable shift we are seeing politically. >> we will get into the tea party in just a minute. you said you think george w. bush did remarkably bad job. >> stunning. >> why do you think that way?
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>> he started listening to other people. but presidents also when they get to the end of a last term -- i think george bush is a decent man and as many people do they truly think that some people simply need to be won over. the trick of the matter is historically we've seen some people can't be. you didn't want to win over the nazis of the fascist and todd ensor japanese. you had to defeat them. when george bush shifted into the framework we also had eight years of the constant pounding on him for think the perfect response after september 11th. i think that his strategy of taking iraq and afghanistan and sandwiching iran was brilliant. but when you effectively dropped all i think the last 18 months of his administration which is why we are still in afghanistan and its life for some reason the three stooges of the middle east, the tallest man in the middle east, bin laden, the one
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night she -- sheik and owls one garrey are walking around. there should be victory in war the post management and unfortunately i think a lot of respect for george bush for his response immediately after september 11 but you do see the shifting and i think vice presidential eni addresses in his book the nature when they stop talking to him and was unfortunate and all these things we see now are shifted to a different attitude. >> again welcome to booktv's live coverage of the "los angeles times" festival of books. one of the and vintages of being out here is the chance to talk with california-based authors and tammy bruce is the first against up this morning. if he would like to participate we are going to put the numbers on the screen.
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(202)585-3885 if you live in the eastern port 585-386. you can also send a tweet to the twitter address. if you will send them a little bit early so we can get them we will lead a chance to read them and let tammie respond to that. we are here on the campus of ucla another book the she's written is called the death of right and wrong. what is this one about? >> not that i have an opinion, it? it is about the rise of this notion that everything is the same people get all ideas are equal. all of the cultures are equal. we don't have a right to pass judgment to come to conclusions and we certainly see socially the damage of that. i think part of that has affected the we have been prosecuting the war. the truth of the matter is the relativism which is fed by the left and i've participated in to some degree to some time ago when i was on the left is this
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notion that if you can get people to believe everything is equal and you cannot come to judgment the net means opinions are bad as well. opinions normally then ship and a lot of what the viewers and listeners are coming to some opinions about what i am saying whether they agree or disagree. that means that there is a notion of right or wrong or whether something is correct and opinions are imperative but if the society says he will be punished for coming to judgment than the messages you shouldn't even think about this issue and opinions are dangerous. that is the far left requires because you begin to look critically what people are doing you will dissent. we've already heard in the last couple of months white house officials including the national security adviser for president obama referred to in a usa today editorial those were dissenting against obama's policies are helping al qaeda synnott we are effectively terrorist because we might not like politically with
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the president is doing. even george bush didn't go that far. i understand politics and the attempt to maneuver positions but what the american people have been subject to on both sides of the all has created a dynamic of finally i've seen in my third book of the new american revolution americans to stand up and say enough is enough. and i am finally seeing it. >> tammy bruce for the viewers who may not be familiar with you, a quick snapshot of your politics and your career. >> well, it started in the late 80's as a pro-choice activist i helped design -- >> where did you grow up? >> here, native los angeles. sprick pro-choice activist? >> helped design the clinic structure called operation
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rescue. i found that inherently unfair but i can the president of the los angeles chapter in 1990 and was on the national board of directors a few years as well and begin a talk radio career also in that time of 1993 and started the police and to those above and started in october of 2000. there was a debate over whether to release it because of the attacks on september 11th because we were about a month out and i said to my publisher look this is going to be more important than ever because these are issues we need to discuss and inevitably people will start suggesting that we not which my second book spurred a year later. talk retial up until now the national organization for women 1997 -- >> how did you get from now to being a conservative author?
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>> it was a fight within the national organization for women during the o.j. simpson trial out here. i saw that as most americans did and it certainly is an active feminist that time without the importance the domestic violence which is colorblind. people don't notice the complex in of the face and it is an issue ignored because it wasn't sexy. it was difficult sometimes to find dictums sympathetic so we finally had attention and started to move that it was an issue of race which of course is obscene with an insult to every woman of all races and ethnicities and that became an internal fight. i realized something happened that when i was being asked by the national office to retreat on that issue that the issues of race for more important. there's a lot of organizations that deal with race in the country and that is an important issue. what my job was to deal with
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issues of women. all women within the envelope and so that was a wake-up call. in addition to the attacks on the laura schlessinger i notice an interesting trend to the demand for the surrender and retreat, demand in general socially for people not to speak up and online issues look i think dealing with violence against women is non-partisan. always a little for an inside because my politics dressel we should organize ourselves better business and another clip for me is when i was told by my mentor it was important to run to the world so that we would always be needed. that wasn't my message. my message was success. so i realized i could do more on the issues that matter to me by being outside of the organization that i could be free to speak my mind and that certainly in the up being the case. >> wanted to become friends with
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dr. larocco? >> we worker this am radio station in los angeles for a period of time until the early 90's and we were not necessarily friends i can tell you that right now. we set interesting things about each other on the air but that is again i think part and parcel having opinions. radio talk-show hosts do. and it was after i left the station actually that i saw what in this instance was against what the defamation was doing and being a gay woman myself i felt that that was of rages. i don't certainly agree with a lot of what she says but i found that the attempt to silence her to get her fired and stop her career because she said something wrong according to the left was quite obscene because that is what we have been fighting against since the onset of the civil rights movement. >> tammy bruce as the guest. tammiebruce.com. we've learned about her now let's take some calls.
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chagrin falls ohio. good afternoon to you. you were on the air with tammy bruce. >> caller: good afternoon. thank you for c-span. mazar bruce, i would like to address -- i've been a bookstore manager for 20 years and i have seen tons of books come out on the political correctness and the way the culture is being deteriorated into mentioned laura schlesinger. she's still in place at fox news and takes over for bill o'reilly but then we see the same indignation when the dixie chicks were marginalized for comments they made and the scene with the tea party there seems to be an attempt to address deficits specifically get deficits were incurred during the bush administration and i don't see any priority movement then. >> yeah, here's what -- and i think i mentioned this in the beginning -- laura does still work, specifically because we push back on the attacks on her and i am happy about that. when it comes to the tea party as i mentioned earlier i think
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that the reaction to george bush was the election of barack obama. barack obama was elected because he was and george w. bush. now with the tea party with me to become of the is is these are stakeholders that have never come out before. they know something is shifting with bush and we are romantics as americans. we believe things will always be okay and there is suddenly this sense that it wouldn't be and that maybe the other party would reverse a certain issue. we have seen that in fact. barack obama is doing what george bush is doing. there's a realization amongst the stakeholders that something needs to be done so i think that what you are seeing is definitely a continuum of a reaction and i don't think it is going to stop for quite some time. but yes, laura does work because the gestapo were answered. there was a pushback. i think the gay community in particular in having to answer
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supporter of free speech from another gay woman was difficult for them to respond to in the organization changed little bit since then. with the dixie chicks the head of the heck of a lot of support but that is the wonderful thing i think also about the increased use of the internet is that now we are looking through this -- you mentioned twitter, there's facebook and other ways giving all factions in america, all points of view a bigger exposure if i can say. >> you are a big twitter. >> i had to be pushed into it. i thought there would be another thing about what consume time but in fact it can be whatever you want it to be. i remember organizing on the left and the 80's and 90's what we could have done with cell phones. i was using a cell phone that
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was a brick. what we could have done with the internet and e-mail and twitter would have been phenomenally we are seeing the results when it comes to both left and right wing organizers. conservatives now are learning to do it and want to do it. they are realizing organizing is a good thing. they've seen it on the left and works and should be an american value and i think we are finally seeing that manifest. >> if people want to follow george woodard? >> ibm at hey tammy bruce. >> illinois you are on with tammy bruce. >> caller: thank you. hi, tammie. i want to ask a foreign policy question. as you know obama has been very harsh on our allies especially israel and some extent britain. but at the same time, he's been fine and it comes to iran and palestinian violence.
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can you explain what is going on with obama and why he is trying to rearrange american foreign policy in favor it seems like of terrorists. thank you. >> thank you. i can only come to my own conclusions knowing the left and also believe in what barack obama was saying. i have cautioned and urged conservatives to believe with the left says. between the campaign, during the next labor law, said he was going to disarm it. progressives as they are termed have felt american power and influence is the problem in the world. it is a mistaken impression but i do think it is a combination. a lot of my books deal with a psychology. why we do what we do. i feel compelled to see why i've done i've done it on the left and transition, and one thing we found is one of texas personally translates into our work. i feel that and i think it's pretty obvious and i've said
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this publicly barack obama has a love for the country itself and it's a reflection perhaps of what his parents felt about the nation. his mother certainly be hit and stated i think publicly to some degree at least it is apparent in interviews she wasn't a big fan of the united states. i think that her son reflects that attitude. the left does feel that the united states has been wrong. we've heard that chant for over a decade now. so it's not surprising to see a president on the left who is acting in order to reverse effectively and pat said the democratic strategists to reconstruct american exceptional was some. now of course americans think differently and as barack obama expressed whether we like being a superpower or not there's been messages that in fact we do like it and that the rest of the world exists now because of our approach and because of american power and exceptional some. we are not ready to give that up
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more we will believe that is the issue or the problem and it's also perhaps an easier take when you see press and overwhelming problem and i saw this on the left. you sometimes turn in words because that's the thing you believe you can control. so if you feel the problems that we have are so extraordinary that you can do nothing about them, some level of cannibalism, and this is why the founders, the genius of the founder is giving us staggered elections so that we will turn to the ballot box and turned to protests and organizing the brilliance of the bill of rights and the constitution, freedom of the price to have this conversation. we will step up against this. look most of us want to change. i warned not all changes good and now i think that especially with israel, israel and the
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jewish people have always been the canary in the mine shaft and once again the gift in the curse of being the chosen people the civilization exists because of the contribution of the jewish community millennia. they've survived abandonment and attacked and attempted extermination. israel stands now as the example of what civilization is capable of doing. both good and bad. you can have as people who attacked her we see as a result of the enemies are in civilization based on who is attacking the jews. look, as was the bombing and terrorism was happening to israel 20 years ago. was a precursor. and now of course it is an example for americans about what the left really stands for. but liberals really stand for, what the obligation to the jewish people and israel, which i think it's extraordinary, and we had a chance to review that
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>> in california do you ever feel isolated from the national politics were left out? >> it's interesting in a way yes of course but at the same time california is a petri dish. the east coast doesn't look anything left of the mississippi and they think california, whatever. interestingly though, what happens here does tend to move. we gave the nation ronald reagan. we saw the economic problems manifest in california very early. we saw the problems with liberal governments which is spending when you don't have money and that could have served as a warning very early on. so here in california we know we sit trends. washington tends to not notice that. i think they may start to but eight days as a native you get used to the fact that this is a beautiful city. it's a beautiful town. los angeles is a sanctuary city. we are in such an economic
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problem of what the mayor is having to shut the city down two days a week. it is no way to run a business, no way to run a country, no way to run a city and americans are seeing what certain things lead you to. as writers we are always told if you want to show the reader something you don't want to tell them liberals are showing americans all over the place what they really mean and americans are not liking it. >> next call for tammy bruce comes from minneapolis. you are on the air. >> hello, ms. bruce and how are you, peter? >> i'm good, thanks. >> caller: i've seen before on book tv, ms. bruce, and i didn't realize that your politics had swung as hard to the right. you describe yourself as a classical liberal which ayman independent i thought you had more of a libertarian streak
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from previous appearances years ago when i had seen you on book tv and i find it interesting you wouldn't be a panelist on the book program itself. you've answered a lot of the questions i had which is how did you progress from the left which i have seen you before as a libertarian to the right where you are at now and if you could speak more to that there would be great. but one or two specific issues that come up is you've made the case for our association with israel and i don't think it gets asked a lot which is why does the united states have apart from the moral component their relationship with israel, why does it make sense for us to have a stronger relationship with that country than any other in the middle east? i know there is democracy, etc..
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but that was one thing. and the other thing that hasn't come up so far today is the immigration issue you talked about the status of l.a. being a century city which is an idea beyond comprehension and there was on the anti-immigration bill if you could speak to that. >> that is a lot to work with. thank you. islamic actually i think the idea of independent conservatism is what is taking hold and i am pro-choice, i am a feminist and a woman and i think a lot of conservative within the religious framework of politics wouldn't consider me conservative. but i do think that there is -- this is what you see in the tea party also an authentic conservatism based on the framework you can agree -- >> i just want to ask are you a member of the tea party? >> you're not really a member.
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i am a massive supporter. i've been to them had spoken at them and i think they are with the nation needs so if you want to say i am a member, yes. skype i apologize for interrupting. sprick it's an interesting question because the synnott but you're not really a member so i love it, i love it. but that is the independent conservative framework. you can be a democrat, republican, libertarian and you can be pro-choice. you're standing at these tea party is pro-choice, pro-life, republicans and democrats because we all realize that the issues that matter to us don't really matter unless we have a home to go to and paycheck coming in and a little bit of a sense that we've saved in the future and we know what the government is going to do and we don't have to worry of the fallout for ourselves. some of the issues you get right down to the tax and stakeholders about the business and about whether or not we will become a welfare state and that is unacceptable to america so you can see classical liberal within
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the kennedy shriver framework as in john f. kennedy or independent conservative which is realizing the party really doesn't matter and both of them are out of control and where is the sovereign average american going? the stakeholder? what is it we realize is in our best interest and has never changed which is why you see people more and more people identifying as independent? you see barack obama's approval number swindel and republican approval numbers coming down. americans are not going to wait any longer for politicians to do what is right and i think that the -- this has been quite frankly beneficial is the understanding my heart was broken in 2008 because i knew what brought the ball was going to do because i knew the left. my heart was broken and i thought our romantic side has overtaken us to the point of being unreasonable, not that that has ever happened to any individual. but now what i am saying reminds
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me why america is so unique and exceptional that we will be romantic. we will give the underdogs a chance that if you don't think about destroying the nation or think the constitution as obsolete or think that the european ways the best way, europe exists because we are not them and we are unexceptional and the average american, the business owner, the stakeholder knows what's important for their families' future and for israel when it comes to not only this nation and the importance of america remaining strong this the compelling aspect is serious about yes to not dismiss the idea that israel until the change in iraq was building democracy in that region it is also the only country that allows women to live lives that suit them. it is an entity that shows and
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exhibits the issue of human and civil rights through the space process. it is a nation as the jewish people serve now for the melanie and i am italian and scott ai risch and i don't think that we have been chosen for anything so when you look at the quality of our lives we not only have an obligation to support israel and the jewish people but it is the country decides that serves as a reminder to the entire region about what is wrong with despotism and the arab world will of this depression, the nature of the problem with terrorism, and it is when it comes to supporting friends why we support in klindienst support europe and why we support israel. it's because they do represent freedom and what is right and the moral obligation and political obligation and because
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i think it is what bald wants and i don't identify as a christian but it is tough to deny that we are tested quite often the fact that we owe the quality of our lives to jewish innovation to education and the creation of western civilization is enough in my butt to stand up for israel and the jewish people islamic br live with tammy bruce at the "los angeles times" festival of books on the campus of ucla. tuzee route two is the area could if you want to precipitate. 202-585-3885 for those in the east and central time zones. 585-3886 for the mountain and pacific time since. >> can i correct something? the scott irish -- i don't want to get my brethren not they're upset. >> we of a suite now. did you want to address the immigration issue? >> obviously it is when you have got john mccain channeling tom
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tancredo you know something has changed. the fact of the matter is with the murder of rancher in arizona with the fact that phoenix has become the capitol of the united states you have ms 13 as a murderous machete game through the united states and you have hamas and hezbollah influencing and funding ms 13 as they move through the united states. the drug trafficking crime and murder when you are first entering this country is breaking ball and when we don't then enforce the law and look away from you there's a kind of contempt that builds and i think with the economy and the nature of realizing that things will not get better under the current circumstances the answer is and amnesty, it is and rewarding people who've been here who have consulted those who followed the rules or who served this nation, you served the country and i want you to become a citizen. it's an insult to all of those
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who've waited and served to become citizens and i think there is an understanding that in order for america to still be the beacon that everyone comes to we allow more people to come into this nation than every other country on earth combined and i think to keep the nation worthy of coming it's time for the southern border. los angeles is showing economically you cannot sustain a welfare state for millions of foreigners. you can't. we have fought and died deliberate hundreds of millions of people who are american. 53 million dustin the war gunter had been liberated to get george w. bush. 60% of those women and children so we are willing to live and die to get our lives for other people. i want to survive and be strong enough so that we are here for people to come. >> we have a tweed from savannah. have you ever considered writing
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a book focused on modern feminism or the lgbt movement? >> it goes to the organization for women. the problem is with modern feminism it was institutionalized and organizations that were leftists. modern feminism is not a leftist notion. it is an american notion. it is the guide yet all of us should be able to live the lives that best suit us so writing a book on the modern feminist movement. if there is one it would be in american history effort. if you see it ranging from the suffrage movement certainly to the beginning of the modern feminist institutionalized movement or even in her last book noted in fact she was in just a tired housewife, she was
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a member of the communist party and decided to move things in that fashion and i think that a lot of history is being misrepresented by certain left-wing institutions and i write about that both in the new thought police and the death of right and wrong but again and as i guess part of my conservatism is by finding out as a student of history and political science that the things i believe and are inherently american. that it's not about having a medically sealed corporation that i owe my life and my point of you and i can speak this way without a brick wall falling down on me if it would be happening right now in saudi arabia that i wouldn't be hanging from a crane as they do the homosexuals in iran that infected is the american value system that allows me to the live the life i live and i like living it and i think is important for me and what i say to be out and a feminist and to
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be conservative because it is not the feminist movement that has made our lives great. it's the action of the founding fathers and mothers and the way the american people have handled threats from the beginning of this nation to this one and if i may add i was at an even questioned for lieutenant colonel west for the 22nd district, war hero, a remarkable man who pretty much exemplifies with this kind of a velvet revolution days that we are having. people were saying we are not sure if we are going to get out of this. look we've gotten out of every other thing that's come our way. we tried to avoid things. we tried to retreat from them and we tried to just live our lives. that is what americans have always done. our founding was in retrieving the old world getting away from it. the bottom line is of course we will be fine. we always have been the american
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hero was manifest and we need them and that is why now well as a feminist it's based on an american as some that i think is at the heart of all things good. >> is that a book idea? >> the best thing i've done with my riding right now is to use the left to illustrate what is going on culturally. i think perhaps it is not a bad idea. i do think organizing is important as i've been telling my listeners and readers and is intended it to get something done and i think they are realizing it now and see it in the tea party movement so i think it is an important aspect to realize that the leftist strategy of organizing is good but the notion of women's rights making people's lives better,
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people of color, quality of children's lives is an inherently american notion, and american notion. the left try to clean those things and americans in general feel as though it is a separate effort. no it's not. those things have been coopted. american lives have been lost tens of millions of them in the effort to free african americans from slavery. americans men in congress have voted for separation. they gave us the right to vote. but elite in this country, the privileged have given up their right. men have voted to give up their right in order to further the quality-of-life for others. this is the only nation that does that and yes i think that is perhaps as important to recognize the difference and if i can try to formulate that might be a good thing to convey. >> before we got started you told your most recent book idea
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which is? >> i'm working on the idea of the merging gestapo is. its history gives a lesson and it always does. we see natural progression that when the left finds that persuasion and intimidation doesn't work and it's not with the american people the name-calling. we've heard it with it was my first book in 2001 and the thought police dealt with it and now of course in 2010 average americans are finding that they are being called tea party terrorists and brown shirts and the moms and wife beaters. steny hoyer interestingly enough just last week apologized saying that was wrong of them to call the tea party participants on american -- knous american i think they realized this must be addressed but it's too late when you are willing to call the american citizenry a variety of names to get them to be quiet when that is the heart and soul of what the nation stands for and i think that you know for
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that movement and when it comes to organizing it's important and we are seeing that when it comes to gestapo separate entities outside of government using certain kind of strategies to silence and intimidate and i think that it is for all americans unacceptable. we have the first chance in history to stop it fascist gestapo movement attempt to silence before it gets a foothold, and i think that is with the november election is about. >> walz oh-la-la washington you are wrong with tammy bruce on booktv. >> caller: ruba here. >> a twitter fall were. thanks for calling. it's nice to hear from you. >> caller: i wanted to know what do you think of your community of followers at tammybruce.com? so we just a bunch of group
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thinkers? >> it's interesting and not that i would have planned this but what has manifested over at my website, and it is a subscription base, i moved away from the terrestrial radio from were to become independent because i got tired of having to be answering to somewhat afraid people. for example i would say of the theme from shaft will the economy started going south and we were asked not to do that because it might be perceived as being a racist, go figure so when it came down to music and things i would say i became troubled by the notion of censorship which i began to apply and by the request by censored so i went independent or commando as i call it and the people run the country and around the world who are subscribing to what i do and it's on the internet for free and we are the number one program in the framework for the tammy army members know that i need an army but i think i do and it is heartening because it
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is such an expanse of people. it is the kind of a variety that you know america truly represents and for me all this in the public on political or controversial issues it does become increasingly difficult when it comes to issues of stress and censorship and the general public when you've got to believe and what you are doing and i think that part of this is now growing up. the tea party movement internet based forums and communities is because everyone is now feeling pressure. at work or at school on the street, with your friends, and i think finally americans are not looking for direction so people especially in this economy are willing to support what i'm
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doing and at the same time it is i think very necessary and it gives people support. when you think we haven't seen any of the thank you really and people begin to wonder what is going to happen and i think having communities of other americans make you feel you are not alone and remind you the you are not alone and i think that is in power in switches and altered situation. is the mix of described as america's favorite openly gay pro choice, pro-death penalty, pro feminist. tammy bruce as the guest. los angeles, good morning. >> caller: actually this democratic people's republic of west hollywood. [laughter] called plus c-span. could this be set until about the benefits of gun-control? >> well, if you are criminal and would like an open field for houses and taking advantage of people you know exactly as washington, d.c. has become the murder capital of the world that
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the bad guys know no one can defend themselves. of course now that's changing. in fact as a supporter of the second amendment and firearms owner i know that as the nation does when you are armed the bad guys of course are a little bit more at risk and don't quite know what freedom they might have. they're clearly is still moving out of suspicious miss no benefit. we have seen a world wide that gun control and keeping firearms out of the hands of law-abiding citizens increases crime, increases murder rates. the fact is murder is also illegal but people still do it with guns and if you're inclined to commit crimes the rules that exist about the tool that you are going to use don't matter either. so the truth of the matter is our founders knew this at having a firearm by your side is something that not only could use a fan was good for the defense but reminded you of your individual responsibility and
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power. the germans and the japanese knew that if they want to end world war ii they could not occupy the united states. they knew because we would harm them, too that no one would be walking down well shire boulevard and the same condition for any federal government that might feel as though the people are getting too much weapons. a national guard or the army is not going to go marching down any american street because we are a different kind of people. we also know that in china to yohanan square wouldn't have happened if china didn't have gun control. those people were not armed so there's a great deal in the new american revolution especially about the importance of firearms ownership and even if you're not comfortable with guns supporting the notion so people like me who i am comfortable with firearms that we will maintain that legitimacy every fascist effort that has takeover in the natn has had to start with disarming
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of individuals. in fact england has found out that trying to disarm and effectively disarming the english people the murder rate has climbed. canada is in the same position. they are overwhelmed with that remark because the canadians are on armed in some hall yet murders are still occurring in that a higher rate. so we know that is a matter of it keeps the crime down. as a woman is the ultimate equalizer if they have a bat by your bed if you were close enough to the better i can hit to the bat you are too close so i want an equal for earmarks i'm going to stop you before you get that close and if you come into my home and there is a picture of me on my website with my gun, mr. degette special, if you are in my home and invited to do me harm you are not leaving standing up and i think for me it reminds me of my
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responsibility and individual personal power and it is an imperative part of american freedom so joining the nra or your local gun group even if you don't own a firearm is an important freedom of expression. at the moment with so much evidence that crime increases and murder increases when there is gun-control and jet people still push for it you have to ask why and i think it is more a matter of controlling the population governmentally the in any concerns regarding crime. >> did snuffy have joined on the set today? >> no, snuffy is homebound. i don't have a carrying permit. it's difficult and los angeles. it's interesting yet i did carry during the riots thought i would take my chances. at the same time snuffy is quietly at home and doesn't have to be said very often that it's
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an interesting position where you have a sanctuary city where it's a welfare state for foreigners effectively and crime with gangs out of control and yet if you are a law-abiding citizen interested in protecting yourself extraordinary limits are placed on you. part of that if i may say including the idea of gun-control is meant to send an overall message that as a citizen you can't be trusted. you can't trust yourself and situations that are too complex to understand somebody has to take care of you and make your choices for you. if we buy into that we will say yes, sir more often when we shouldn't and i think that there is that psychological component that if you have to ask for permission or deny permission or your done is taken away we saw what happened in new orleans after katrina. law enforcement sweeping through confiscating without notice
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illegally firearms. it's a message the people can't be trusted and that is a message that is not acceptable. that is a fact something can't be trusted it's the government. the founders wanted us to look funny at the government. they wanted restrictions, the new what government could do as ma merkel or any other framework and they wanted the american people to be the bulwark against what they normally naturally saw as power and as the problems associated with it. >> a tweed tammy bruce dress to claim she speaks for the average american. let's see, six-figure salary and on tv, soon notte ethridge. >> welcome a six-figure salary, that would be nice. i think as a small-business owner when you are looking at a lot of americans this is this argument out who is wealthy is amusing to me coupled to the
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making six figures, that is something to be ashamed of if you do. it's usually because you are in business and filing as individuals as opposed to a corporation. also when you are looking at who puts money into the economy it's interesting. the average american depending whether you live in new york or los angeles you are going to have to make a lot of that money in water to survive. but i think all of us have experienced a shift in that regard. i want the average american, and most of us do depending on where we live, able to make the choices we want to make financially. and being on television the last time i checked i think almost everybody was on television at this point in life. i will not dismiss so the fact that i am privileged and very lucky and honored the five had certain opportunities but it's because the choices that i've made and as americans we are all able to make choices and we all
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find our level. i love the fact there's some people on television more than me that some people make more than me. i want to make more. i want americans to be successful. money as i said over and over again especially for women and minorities it's a core of the conservative idea money is what sets us free. if you have enough money you are free to make the choices you want to make. if someone sends a check whether it is an ex-husband or the government you are answerable to them. they need to tell you what you can eat, where you're going to live and what school you will send your kids to and what kind of job you have to get. being free financially allows you to make all kind of choices, private schools, where you want to eat, where you want to live, but part of the country to deny the importance of capitalism and i am not talking about becoming a millionaire but successful enough to where it is government
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checked you are not waiting for to where you are free to move if you want, free to be in or out of a relationship. how many people are in a relationship because they think it is financially easier to be so you want to be in a relationship because you choose to be. so i think while we are at different points in the road on the way to the american dream to suggest someone is not american or doesn't speak to those values because they may be at a certain point in the road different than others is cynical and unfortunate. >> should discard circles as a geeky brought not ready to retire from the central valley of california. california is leading the nation in trends does that mean republicans will be irrelevant nationwide instead of just in california? >> i was on the arnold schwarzenegger transition team
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and we have a lot of hope and i said what we didn't take into account is what would happen if you slept with a kennedy every night so we became disillusioned quite quickly. the truth is the parties are irrelevant. that's already happened. people are now voting based on a candidate and individual framework. i think there will find more conservatives within the republican party. i think now that is happenstance because of the reagan legacy but they are irrelevant and i think that as americans both democrats i am a declined until february of 08 but as americans are going to be voting in november if democrats as they did in massachusetts start to vote based on their situation and a candidate versus she's a democrat or he's a democrat so will be just fine people are finding out that is not the case anymore and same with
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republicans you can't presume a republican as conservative for that a republican holds your values. george w. bush was a liberal and he started this slide into nationalized health care and he spent more money creating a bigger government than the johnsons free society that also failed. those are not conservative fell use and this is when you talk about being serious you can talk all you want americans now want the truth. what the values that help our lives could to manifest. republicans have destroy that. they started this of course barack obama is next. he is in the same train. and americans now realize we did this isn't about party. who are these people? that is the question who are these people and that is what to ask when it comes to your candidates. >> booktv live coverage of the "los angeles times" festival of
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books. tammy bruce is the guest and we have another 15 minutes before the first author panel starts. greenwich new jersey is been very patient. thanks, you are on the air. >> hi, new jersey. he's watching the tv. >> we are going to try to put you on hold of you will turn down the volume. >> there he is. >> caller: hello, tammy. okay the reason i'm calling -- the reason i'm calling is i've watched you for a while and i know you've got a perspective -- obviously you've got a perspective from the right so you've got a perspective that comes from both sides of the spectrum and the reason i'm calling may sound a little weird about your on c-span which is
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great but out here we need a voice like yours on a national basis. you have the radio program but have you ever been approached by like fox to get on the national platform? they have reruns' of hannity and zero riley and i've seen you on the zero while the show but i guess my question is have you ever been approached by fox to have a national show on tv because we really need people like you because you've been as i sit on both sides of the political spectrum -- >> tammy bruce? >> i'm honored to be fox news contributor. there was offered to me it's been five years now when no one else was filing by phone. they've always had a sense, roger who's the longtime civil rights of martin luther king. he understands that classical liberal perspective, the nature of the americans are and that
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was an offer that was very generous five years ago and i'm honored to be associated. clearly the influence of fox news just increased over time for a reason, it is the only place even if you disagree with some of what you hear you know the you are getting people telling you the truth on both sides effectively. i would love to do something more regularly within that framework i suppose would be great if they call up and say they would like to see more. i certainly should probably assert that but we've all grown up with television and it is clearly in our fast-paced world look if we are lucky we are working may be working two jobs trying to raise your family, as an american you know it's your responsibility is to save the country also. luft ones in uniform or not the world, the war and the home front year, war al-sayyid and we do need to do it all. and i think television, cable to say the least and the new social media are all hooked into that
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and i have seen that while riding and books what is imperative about books is the fact they are always there. i know the work i did over the last decade and the work i will do in the future with books will always be available for people. unfortunately, they will also always be relevant when it comes to the left will always be present but television is clearly the medium that is going to remain in their it through the velvet revolution and i would hope to play a larger part in it and i think that maybe something i need to get a little bit more aggressive about. >> another tweet. is there a danger that the tea party will be coopted by the republicans? >> i will tell you there is always a danger to everything. i have acquainted the tea party movement like the issue of faith that it's like the power of the tea party movement is that it is
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unnatural manifestation the start with the nbc reporter having had explosion on the air saying we need a tea party and it manifested naturally out of that as a former organizer i've never seen anything like it and nobody else has either. there are certainly organizers involved. there have to be entities that raise the money to send out the notices does about the stages. the responsibility of the average to a party patriot is to hold the movement like you would a bird. you want to hold on tight enough so it doesn't fly away and the same with faith. you want it to be there and aware yet you don't want to hold it too tightly so that you injured it and that becomes something that it shouldn't be. that is difficult. americans have been able to do it. i am working on it. i tend to hold on to things
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tight by of seen americans right now doing very well. look i think that for conservatives and stakeholders they've never organized this organizing business of acquainted to organizing cash. can you get a bunch of cats in one room? yeah that you don't know what will happen and they might not stay there and then if the cats meet up you don't know what they are going to talk about so think of yourselves as cats, they will come together in a pride to accomplish something. but other than that everything is rather unpredictable and that is the value but also as an organizer you want results and my last point, they had to rely on intensive organizing with leadership because the requests are not natural. the tea party movement is not something that's been started to move the american people. it's the results.
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the tea party movement is the thing that represents the shift that has already occurred so when i hear karl rove talking about people need to get left and you need to ask the tea party patriots to pledge to learn about the issue that is insulting. we know the issue. the tea party movement is this because we've already made the shift and we are acting on it and like every other movement in this country. the days of new gingrich was a perfectly nice man are over. he's the one who told sarah palin to be relevant she better move to new york really fast.
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matter is the old conservative guard and dick armey knows this of all people. >> host: tammy bruce we have about two minutes left. what are you reading? >> guest: a few things. it just suggested to me lawrence of arabia by chris buckley interestingly enough and i want to read more fiction. , a claremont university reading a lot of things of the presidency and clues in the presidential command but more fiction should be on my list for pleasure so lawrence of arabia will be there. >> host: tammy bruce has been our guest from the "l.a. times" book festival her three books very quickly "the new american revolution." "the new thought police."
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"the death of right and wrong." tammy bruce.com. >> guest: it is a pleasure. >> host: we will take y to our first author piano we are live here on the campus the crowds are starting to gather it is still here in the morning a beautiful california day and you can see the first panel has been seated. . .
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>> if anyone is tweeting from this panel use the hash tag latpob.fz -- latfob. is anybody tweeting here? yes, we have a tweeting. what kind of future does the american qui have?
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we ask now because there are 15 million americans officially unemployed. many more americans who have give up looking for a job and to emphasize for the relevance of our topic i would like to start by doing a brief survey of the audience here today. how many people here have a friend or a relative who's been laid off, is out of work or is unemployed? and how many people know someone who is working part time or temping or freelancing or consulting because they can't find a good job? and this is the west side of l.a. imagine if this was at riverside or san bernardino. anybody have a friend or a relative who's in foreclosure or facing foreclosure? i have a nephew who's a certified parallel the only job he could get was working for a law firm that specialized in
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foreclosures. [laughter] >> the growth area of the american economy. and how many people think the chinese economy will grow faster than therican ecy in the foreseeable future? well, our format today is that -- each of our panelists will speak first for 8 minutes. then i'll ask one question to each panelist. and then we'll open the session to the panelists on the floor. we have microphones. please speak into the microphone if you have a question. we'll go in alphabetica order starting with joyce appleby he's a professor at ucla. she's been president of the american historical association, president of the organization of the american historians. she's the winner of the 2009 arthur schlesinger, jr., award for the historical distinguished writing.
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she's written many books. her new book "the relentless revolution: the history of capitalism." please welcome joyce appleby. [applause] >> my narrative in the rerentless revolution ends in 2009. a five century trajectory that has transformed our planet and now troubles the heavens. i explore the benchmarks of capitalism's descent looking how the system transformed the material world while churning up practices and beliefs and ideals that had long prevailed within the cocoon of custom. i define capitalism as a set of economic practices that generate wealth through competing individual initiatives using private resources to enhance productivity and earn profits through market exchanges. sounds pretty ordinary. but every element in that definition challenged the
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beliefs and institutional arrangements of traditional society. so in order for capitalism to go from a few capitalist practices to an ism involved the protracted struggle with the defenders of the status quo. capitalism's roots are fairly shallow not going much deeper than the 17th century. and it took a unique convergence of events and trends and a lot of contingencies for a few individual initiatives and agriculture science and technology to push one pioneer country, england into sustained development beyond the limited economic horizons of endemic scarcities. trade would never have produced capitalism on its own. it fit well into traditional societies. more important, commerce did not affect the absolute cap on growth. the fact that if all countries had taken 80% of the people to farm in order to feed the rest of society.
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100 families then could produce enough food for 125 families. and those other 25 families were made up of the military, the clergy, the royal officials as well as merchants, manufacturers and artisans. agricultural changes were essential to moving beyond the world of scarcity. scarcity so limited, so endemic that every year famine threatened. in the 17th century the english and the dutch began experimenting with new farming techniques. and over the next century, they began growing more food with fewer laborers and less investment. 300 years later only 36% of english adult males worked the land. but major factor in changing production processes came in the 17th century breakthrough technology.
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and what they gained was an understanding of accurate laws of motion, of proof of the existence of a vacuum. and demonstrations of the weight of atmosphere. yet, all this work from the natural philosophers might never have found its way into new techniques for pulling and lifting and rotating material objects had england not been society where the members of the scientific elite world mingled easily with manufacturers and mechanics. a free and cheap press in england spread new ideas, helping the advancement of science to advance right into the workshops of a thomas nucom and james watt. capitalism couldn't -- excuse me, capitalist practices couldn't thrive of a traditional society because its propull sive force drove people into work changing their habits and their attitudes as well.
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there was a resistance to these disruptive novelties. the aggressive pursuit of profits and constant norms of aristocrats, monarchs and priests. furious debates ensued about these intrusive novelties. attacks on profit-seeking jostled public realm was peons to a new idea of productivity. and soon you had people advertising the virtues of efficiency and ingenuity and disciplined work. the capitalists finally won this ideological battle. by the end of the 19th century the magic of steam was overtaken by the wizardy of electricity, chemistry, joined physic in the industry, science and technology, prompted an unending succession of advances as we so well know. capitalists focused on enhancing production through private initiatives impinged on every facet of life and was itself
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affected by every institution important to its participants. the family, the local community, national laws. children had to be reared as individuals. and that word "individual" was used for the first time to refer to persons in the 18th century. my study is really sustained argument for looking at capitalism in a different way. for grasping its essence by following the historical course that it traced. capitalism can be isolating from mores, politics, and law for analytical purposes but it is never free of them. it exists within a social system always subject to widely shared attitudes. if i had a goal in providing the relentless revolution it was to make us more aware of ourselves as shapers of capitalism's future. the experiences of market participants influenced the direction of capitalist development as do changing sensibilities. and i want to give you two examples of this.
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after world war ii, leaders wanted to avoid the hostile rivalries that followed after world war i plunging the world into depression and then into a second world war. and so they put in place a series of international accords that triggered the 25 years of post-world war ii prosperity. our sensibilities changed, too. affecting our values and behavior. slavery and child labor right now important to us. they no longer figure in the economy as the most countries. not because they don't make economic sense but because they offend us. both cases reveal capitalism as a cultural system that changes as we the participants change either inadvertently or through specific campaign like those against slavery and child labor. at the end of the book i enumerate capitalist sins. my list includes responding to
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short-term opportunities to the neglect of long-term consequences dispensing power without responsibility. promoting material values over spiritual ones. c commodityizing prices and unsettling very old social arrangements. these qualities mean that despite the great wealth that capitalism has generated, the world is still plagued by pervasive poverty, destitute communities, failed states and oppressive governments. there are many innovative reformers who are addressing these problems but it has been market growth in korea, taiwan, malaysia that has 300 million out of poverty during the last 30 years. reminding us that capitalism still does the heavy lifting. the capitalist system could help us make wiser policy decisions
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it's not a self-correcting system. assertions about its autonomy make it hard for us to recognize that the market should and can serve us not just as private persons but as members of a society with laudable goals like securing the living wages and providing universal health care and good schools. at a critical moment in the journey of capitalism to dominance, the importance of cultural influences was dispatched to a conceptual limbo. and we've got to drag them back into the light. i conclude my book as i will this talk that while capitalism is a relentless revolution it is not a mindless one. there is much we can do to shape capitalism's future and retain its amazing generating capacity as long as we are not so foolish as to kill the incentives that fueled it. [applause] >> thank you, joyce.
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next roger farmer is professor and chair of the economics department here at ucla. he served as a consultant to the federal reserve bank of atlanta the federal reserve bank of australia, the european central bank and the bank of england. he's the contributor to the f%l'u'
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[laughter] >> the american economyeis a capitalist economy and as joyce has eloquently reminded us capitalism is an evolving system we've learned from past crises and we will learn from this one. in writing how the economy works i had two ends in mind. the first was to explain economics to the general reader. and the second was to provide some new ideas to help us as a society it off prevent crises of from recurring. in the book i answer a number of questions. why is there so much disagreement among journalists, politicians and academic economists over the causes of recessions? what went wrong in 2008 and how can we fix it? who was keynes and why is his ideas relevant today? what's the role of the federal reserve system and how does it affect you in your life? why is the stock market important to every american alive today? in the book i answer all these questions and i illustrate them with some examples.
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one of my favorite science writers was richard fineman who was probation officer at cal tech who wrote a book called "qed" in which he related some very difficult scientific ideas into words for someone with no knowledge of physics could understand. and one of my moles was to do for macroeconomics what fineman did for economics. an important theme of the book is the idea that economic thought had swung between two schools that in response to economic events. on the one hand there's a group of classical economists who believe that the economy is a self-correcting mechanism. and that left to itself, the market will always restore full employment. on the other side of the debate, there's a group of keynesian economists who believe that left to itself, a market economy will often go very wrong. classical and keynesian ideas have battled each other for 70 years.
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and the current crisis represents a move away from the laissez-faire ideas, the classicat ideas of the 1990s that saw the deregulation of the financial regulation that many people have blamed for the current financial crisis and towards a heavier emphasis on keynesian ideas as represented by the economists who are advising the obama administration like christina romer, the chair of council of economic advisor or ben bernanke chair of the federal reserve system. i'm often asked if i'm a keynesian or a classical economist. and i devolve the following answer to that and the answer is no, i'm a tharmarian. [laughter] >> and i combined the most important ideas that i see in the most important ideas in keynesian economics with the best of classical theory. and what i see is central are two important themes. the first is that high unemployment could persist forever if we don't do something
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about it by evolving social institutions. the second is that market psychology and keynes called this animal spirit is an independent driving force in the economy. now, the central ideas of keynesian economics, i think, are correct. but way that they've been translated into -- into modern policy ideas are wrong. and one of my favorite anecdotes is after world war ii, there was a convention in bretton woods, new hampshire, where the international monetary fund was set up and the world bank was set up and keynes was important confession and he said i was the only non-keynesian in the room. [laughter] >> what i take by that we shouldn't stick to rigid dogma. keynes would have evolved given the data and the things we've seen that occurred since the second world war. now those two central ideas that
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unemployment is important and can persist and that animal spirits matter, you may be surprised to know that in the very -- in the paradigm that we teach to our ph.d. students and the very best institutions in america and throughout the world has no room for unemployment. and certainly the idea that animal spirits confidence is important is also missing from the theory that we've been teaching. now, i've argued that capitalism evolves in response to events. and that leads me to the second goal of this book. which is to explain some new ideas based on a coherent and new scientific paradigm to help prevent future crises from occurring. i've been teaching and researching in macroeconomics for 30 years where i'm known for my work on the macroeconomics of self-fulfilling prophesies. why animal spirits are important. and although my approach has
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always been seen as theoretically possible it took an economic earthquake, the crash of 2008, to remind us as a society that financial panics are not a thing of the past. and i would say that the crash of 2008 was to my work on animal spirits what the discovery -- [inaudible] >> i've long known how to incorporate animal spirits into economic theory. but in 2005, i began work on a book "expectations, employment and prices" that does bring in the second piece of the keynesian puzzle which is why unemployment can persist. and how that can be consistent with classical economic ideas. and in that book i provided a way of making economics consistent with the rest of macro -- keynesian economics consistent with the rest of macroeconomics theory in the form of classical ideas in a way that preserves those central
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messages of keynes' book "the general theory." when i began work on the project that became "expectations, employment and prices" that i thought i would be providing the intellectual foundation for the keynesian policies that were followed by the obama administration. but i found that in fixing keynesian economics, i also had to change it. and by incorporating new evidence from empirical studies that were not available to keynes when he wrote the general theory, i realized the keynes theory was right the policies he advocated would need some tweaking and i explained that idea more fully in the book. so to sum up, we were asked if the american economy has a future. the american economy is a capitalist economy and as joyce reminded us capitalism has pulled more human beings out of misery any other system devised but we have never lived in a unregulated capitalist economy and the question is not whether to regulate to capitalism it's
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how to regulate it without stifling the entrepreneurial spirit that is the source of capitalism as an engine of growth and i give some fresh ideas in the book about how to do that. and it's my hope that we can learn from this crisis to put policies in place that will enable us to move forward without killing the goose that lays the golden egg. [applause] >> dr. farmer. [applause] >> thank you, roger. next, steven hill. steven is director of the political reform program for the new america foundation. he's the author of an earlier book "10 steps to american democracy" as well as other books on politics. he's got a new book out today. "europe's promise: why the european way is the best hope in an insecure age." he's come from san francisco. it's his first time at the
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festival of books. please welcome steven hill. [applause] >> thank you, john. it's a great pleasure to be here. and i enjoy the beautiful weather. in san francisco we're still socked in fog as usual. i'm going to disagree with the previous panel. i'm not sure here in the united states we are learning sufficient amount from the economic crisis that we've been going through and are still going through. as a way of showing why i think that i'm going to talk about what europe has been doing and what they've been evolving. and what they are currently doing. and in many ways my book "europe's promise" it's the story how post-world war ii europe has transformed itself from a place of military warring nations which it had been for centuries, right, into a place -- an example of how a modern society can develop itself. can take care of its people and support families and individuals.
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can foster what i call peace and prosperity partnerships with its neighbors and in its region and do all this in a way that's environmentally sustainable as possible. the backdrop to my book is that the world is facing two immense challenges in the 21st century. and they are the following. how are we going to identify the institutions and practices that are going to allow a burgeoning global population of 6.5 billion people to enjoy a decent standard of living or another way of saying that how are we going to allow the chinese and the brazilian coming up in the world without burning up the progress without burning the carbon in the environment. and when we measure the policies of the government whether it's the united states government, europe, china or whoever, those are the things we have to always ask ourselves. how are they responding to those challenges? and there's no question that today europe is leading the world in creating the innovations and fostering the types of innovations that are
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responding to these challenges. in many ways -- and i won't have time to go into it the few minutes i have. europe has reinvented how we do the health care and the debate is socialized medicine and the for-profit. europe has come up with a third way where they have nonprofit private insurance companies that provide most of the health care. and not all of europe. germany, france, belgium -- these are the countries that are leading the way in this type of environment. in germany, for example, the corporations, major corporations have a board of directors like our corporations do. but the workers are allowed to elect 50% of the board members of those corporations. [applause] >> imagine if wal-mart were required by law to allow its workers to elect 50% of its board members. this is what i'm talking about. and this is a major economies.
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it's the world's largest exporter. i don't believe china's numbers. i believe germany is the largest exporter. how is it that here in this highly information-saturated country like united states where we're supposedly all educated we have not heard that a major economy in the world allows its workers to elect 50% of the board members of the major corporations. this is a major defect of our -- of the media. and of our educational system in general. just as the media missed weapons of mass destruction. just as they missed an $8 trillion housing bubble they have missed what's been going on in europe and instead what you see are ridiculous headlines about, you know, greece in default. as if that defines europe. so we have a lot of catching up here to do in the united states. so they also have reinvented how to support families and individuals. in this age -- increasing age of economic insecurity and indeed they have reinvented capitalism itself.
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people will tell you europe is socialists and all the things you hear. it's the world's largest economy. it produces nearly a third of the world's gross domestic product. in fact, europe's economy is almost as large as the united states and china combined. think about that. when you hear the g2 hype china will be the next superpower and yet europe has an economy that's almost as large as the united states and china combined. europe has more fortune 500 countries than united states and china combined. europe has more small businesses than we have here in the united states producing two-thirds of the jobs compared to about half the jobs in the united states. europe is the largest trading partner with both united states and china. does this sound like a weak sclerotic economy to you? that's what you hear endlessly repeating in the u.s. media. europe is -- you hear it's it has high employment. it has slightly lower unemployment than we have here in the united states.
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what europe has is what i call in the book -- you know, this is not socialism, folks. this is capitalism. but it's what i call social capitalism. compared to what we have in the united states, which is wall street capitalism. and social capitalism, as joyce said, there's no question that capitalism is the great wealth producer humans ever produced. the question is what do you do with that wealth. whose pockets does it go into? europe has harnsz -- harnessed that wealth. everybody has health care and by more generous pensions by having paid sick leave. 16 million americans have no paid sick leave. when they have to decide whether to stay home and self-subsidized themselves or infect their coworkers and many are working in restaurants where they're handling your food. think about that the next time you go to restaurants. 60 million americans without paid sick leave. paid parental leave.
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after you have a child this europe, they give you what's called a kiddy stipend $150200 a month that everybody receives to buy diapers and the things you need in order to have -- to make sure your baby has -- and your family is healthy. more vacations. university education, many countries in europe it's still free.@@@@@ @ @ @
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escalating deductibles and copayments -- if you're a family that needs child care on average americans pay two children over $12,000 a year in child care in some countries in europe child care is free. in other countries you may be paying, a thousand to $2,000 a month. university education, you're paying tons of money out-of-pocket. if you're paying for your own retirement, americans pay three times as much for their own retirement as the europeans get in exchange for their taxes. so when you boil it all down, what you discover is that americans are paying a lot of money out-of-pocket for the same things that europeans get in exchange for their taxes.
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and when you boil it all down, discover americans are paying more and we're getting a lot less for our money. if you look at the forbes state of misery in the state-of-the-art who's paying more in taxes i mean, academics my friends who are economists i asked them where are the studies, you know, looking at out-of-pocket expenses and what you're getting in exchange for your tax and they say they say there really aren't any. and europe up there at the top of the list, the most tax miserable there down in the bottom of the list is united states around indonesia, malaysia and the philippines happy as a clam paying less taxes. instead we're paying a lot more out-of-pocket. so there's a lot of myths that we have about europe and about ourselves and our system that don't add up when you start shining the light of scrutiny on them. i'm about out of time here. ...
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in many ways we are not doing our fair share and because our type of capitalism simply is not making the greatest point and we have to change wall street capitalism to something more like europe's version of the social capitalism here is a good time to learn from other places but be open and quick thinking that in the u.s. we're the best.
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the metric simply do not show that in many ways. thank you. [applause] >> steven hill, thank you. miller, we all know as host of casey rw left, right and center heard locally on 89.9 friday at 230. [applause] online and many other stations in many other cities. matt has the hardest job in public radio. he has to get bob shearer and arianna huffington to stop talking. [laughter] and he has succeeded admirably. he's also a weekly columnist for the washington post online edition, a senior fellow at the center for american progress, his new book is "the tyranny of dead ideas". please welcome mat miller.
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[applause] >> thank you, john, and i'm so fascinated by michael panelists. i want to read all these books. it's actually good to get a taste of them. i want to say that even though i'm center on left, right and center i'm wearing my chinese communist party cufflinks. [laughter] this is actually my little sartorial not to the future of capitalism which we can talk about in a second and in any event and the guard chinese creditors will require this as standard issue uniform for us before long. [laughter] and my little time today i think i got good news and bad news when it comes to the question does the american economy have a future. i think the good news and that although you can tell from this audience's response there's lots of pain and suffering going on in the economy between our families, the families of the folks we know, many committees in the country, i think it's a certainty that we will get through this current difficulty. it is going to take a while
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because the bible was big and the fiasco has been deep so it may take five or six years to get back to the kind of level of unemployment and growth that we have come to expect, but i think that's the good news. the good news is we will get through this because bubble bursting and the leveraging is sort of part of the nature and unfortunately what's happening in calculus economies in the past, the bad news and is built on things all my colleagues said it is that i love and the current problem is actually our biggest problem economically. i think our biggest problem economically once we get to this episodic prices of the banking system failure and the financial shenanigans that went on is we're at a moment in the history of american capitalism and not cope adequately with the challenges posed by globalization and rise of india and china which from the point of view of the world or benevolence is a wonderful thing and for humanity. hundreds of millions being lifted out a party thanks to the miracle of capitalism bring --
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at the same time the rise of those powers is a loss of american primacy which we've enjoyed since world war ii, a very great ride. that coupled with rapid technological change and a way that's changing the nature work in the impact on our workforce means that we face serious threats to the middle class in america i think our leaders at every level politics, business, economic committed date, etc. have now begun two seriously address or help all of us collectively think about and i think the reason is we're all in the grip of what i call in my book dead ideas about the way modern advanced american-style capitalism should work. if you think about it's dead ideas that got us into the current economic ditch we're in. so if we had exploded the dead ideas that financial markets regulate themselves six years ago which even alan greenspan said this was a flaw in his
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thinking we could have avoided lots of the pain and suffering that american families and businesses have gone through in the last couple years and will still have. it wouldn't have required some radical socialist change, it would have meant things like adequate capital standards for banking institutions, rules that stopped the mortgage originators from passing on without keeping skin in the game themselves, these low downpayment no proof of income loans that shot through the system, simple rules about derivatives which are being debated this very moment in washington that led what should have been in a small problem and a small class of subprime mortgages balloon into something that could take down the global financial system only because our wall street elites were able to treat all these bony instruments that are all side bets in casino that had nothing to do with the underlying loans are debts. so so much of what wall street has done is to create kind of
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sophisticated casino and rules against that which hopefully blanche lincoln and others will be successful in trying to impose in this banking reform, it will be simple changes like that, not some kind of rattle all -- radical socialism. we could have onerous against that idea and the result was all this at the fan similarly. i believe unless we honors and get out ahead a similar debt ideas on health care, taxes, schools and more that i talk about in the book we will not find a way back to a durable prosperity. so in a few minutes i have let me get a taste of what i think some of those dead ideas are. there are six in the book, probably hundreds you can think economic and public life if you add your personal life and you can add thousands of ideas. [laughter] anyone who's been married for any length of time knows that that ideas -- one can get trapped in these things at every
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level. but just by with a taste there are 6i focus on the book and i will give free because then you'll have to read the book. [laughter] and you want to miss the soaring prose, fascinating historical narrative, accessible for marion style economic. [laughter] that make it all worth reading so quickly three dead ideas. on health care the company should take care of. this is the idea that pretty unique in america that most of us get our health care from our employers and it's because of this that we have a recession extreme like we've had in the last couple years 8 million lose their jobs in number are without health care spikes because we've got millions losing not just their jobs but their health care security. it's interesting how that happened in. the way i talk about it in the book is free to these ideas to identify them a that matter you need to understand their story because when you look at the
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history that joyce appleby clearly has helped explain he would understand where these came from and why they arguably made sense of the time and when circumstances change in ways that make a horrible or perverse or unhelpful. the corporate provided health care and this whole secret history of why we have a score badly administered welfare say i argue was actually part of corporate america's and conservative america's attempt to fend off the growth of state in the unions. the way that they explain it to us is after world war ii and there was a wage and price freeze and benefits exempt, company's offer to compete for talent and the fed came in after world war ii and subsidized and it grew from there and that's true but what it doesn't take into account is a longer history that started in early in the 1900's when the force corporate welfare programs began that devolve into the system we have today and that was in reaction to the sweatshops, the rise of
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the labor movement, the coal mining disasters at that time things were workers trying to get bigger share of the pie and conservative side of the political debate here was worried about the growth of the state and labor. they decided to put in the onus on companies to provide these benefits to share the wealth and that's what led us here today. it's a bad idea and a world were on like after world war ii you don't have one breadwinner working at a big company that can afford to provide benefits and the family gets from them. as you know we work multiple jobs in a career, companies which could have afforded this when health care was 5 percent of gdp can't begin to add 17%, headed to 20% so for all those reasons it's dead. in taxes the dead idea is taxes for the economy and their role is too high. this is something that steven hill i think would be sympathetic to.
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why do i say -- taxes are going to go up and once we're through this great recession and on better path to recovery taxes will rise as a share of gdp in a matter what political party is in power because we are retiring the baby boomers and as we do that we will double the number on social security and medicare. there are 50 trillion in unfunded promises and the math doesn't work at current levels of taxation. obama's pledge to exempt people under two and $50,000 from higher taxes cannot be maintained and maybe he will try for his first term, he and his advisers know it can't be maintained and that's part of politics. you do a chicken to be elected and this is an on discuss a pullback in u.s. politics. my book high quote john mccain's advisers that taxes will go up. the inability to discuss that means that we can have a discussion about two things that are more important now which is the economy will be fine, there's no reason and stephen
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hills book documents as my own does in a minor way that there's no reason to think that somewhat higher taxes as share of gdp is inconsistent with remarkable growth and prosperity etc.. we do need to think about how we change the way we tax ourselves so we are raising the taxes we have which is going to happen because we can't borrow the whole baby boomers retirement from china, cufflinks with standing. [laughter] there are ways to change we tax ourselves to do least time for economic growth and my view is cutting taxes on payrolls and corporations because both our job killing and raising taxes on things like dirty energy and consumption. that's the second idea. last that idea -- skip that, you'll get two now and you can. [laughter] you can get for later but that one of the dead ideas is money follows merit by the way and you'll see that explored the the gold index hearings in congress
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on tuesday this week. [laughter] [applause] in the last 30 seconds i'll say in the book i talk about seven ideas that are destined ideas, get rid of the debt ideas and replace it is destined ideas and how to sue if they are in the bookã
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capitalism you're talking about starting in 1630 to 1930, 300 years, the european system that stephen talked about is most the post-world war two phenomenon. you talk about the living wage as the best policy that could and part in the world and i know that's one of your political projects in l.a. but if it took 300 years to get probation on child labor, how long is it going to take us to get a living wage? why do think it won't take
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another 300 years? >> well, as a store and you know that things are not similar and sometimes things are accelerated and it's not -- the slavery campaign was pretty fast because pennsylvania abolish slavery in 1780 and was only 35 years old. the point i would make it is in competition is the muscle in the visible hand of adam sneath that said that led to the public getting benefits from private -- private competition. but competition stance in the way of many major social goods that we have a. it's very hard for one company to pay living wages and be competitive and hard for countries to do that and be competitive as we see with outsourcing so my hope is they can be changing sensibilities because if you have a world change so they think it's
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outrageous that people should work a full week and not be able to have a comfortable existence, then we might have a very accelerated route to a living wage around the world. think of the social problems that would be solved if the wages and benefits than european workers get were given to workers all over the world. is going to take a campaign and awareness like all the things we've talked about, deal with changing public discourse and i think we're going to have to do that but optimistic. [applause] >> roger farmer, i want to talk a little about some of the news of the last week that matt miller brought up in your book has discuss the causes of what happened in 2008. in the book you say the trigger was an inability to value assets. namely subprime mortgage
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securities. i wonder if you stick with that term, in ability and light of the news of the last couple of weeks about goldman sachs treating these instruments that you would fail so they could bet against them. the bond rating agencies colluding with wall street which we just found out about in the last couple days. are we talking about deception and fraud in valuing assets? is in that different from an ability to value them? [applause] >> i called economists the answer is, yes, and now appear in [laughter] it certainly true there is a vast amount of fraud that has been thrust on us in this crisis, but if we think about this in the broader picture i think a lot here are focusing in on a the symptoms and not looking at the diseased. now if you look at the history -- one of the things i've argued earlier this capitalism has been evolving institution to help deal with situations we've seen in the past.
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there were five financial crises in the 19th century all of which were very similar to the one we've been through and the fluctuations in employment and gdp in the 19th century were enormous. there was one major financial crisis in the 20th century, the great depression, but in the postwar time we've seen only 10 recessions, but all of them were much more mild than anything we've seen before. another reason for that in my view is we've evolved an institution to help deal with financial crises and that institution was the federal reserve system. the notion we should have a central bank that takes interest rates was itself a new idea in the 19th century, there was an english economist who was one of the earlier editors of the economist magazine who wrote the book and central banking, wonderful book called lombard street. in introduce the notion of the central bank as the lender of
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last resort. so what we have seen, what we sought bernanke to an early bankers and financial crises in the postwar time 1987 was a great example, flub the economy with money to help davit. in the look and every one of the 10 postwar recessions in the previous nine and everyone of them offense helped us out of recession by lowering interest rates. what was different about 2008 is the fed ran out of bullets. and that makes the 2008 crisis much more similar to the great depression than any other crisis we've seen. there was, however, a big response and we didn't go into the great depression at least yet here come although we have nearly 10 percent unemployment in the early years of the 1930's unemployment was over 24% in the u.s.. the reason we didn't go there i
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think was because of two things and the most important was a brand new monetary policy on the part of the federal reserve which stepped in. bernanke realized you can't lower the interest rate closer but there are other you could and one of the things -- one of the reasons that mortgage rates are at an all-time low is because bernanke pullback securities and other reasons the stock market increased by 17 percent and that's benefited through the 41k plans and that's happened because the fed stepped in to support long-term assets and that money flowed into this stock market. so we've seen wild swings in financial markets, as always been true that those wild swings in financial markets are associated with fraud and this was true in the 19th century just as much as it is now but the reason that post for was
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relatively stable environment is because we developed institution to help us get out of those situations and what we need in the future much more of the kind of creator's quantitative policies that bernanke introduced and again, read about it here. [applause] >> you have a very powerful argument that europe has done a much better job providing not just economic security for its citizens by a dynamic economic growth. i wonder if you think that economic growth of europe is sustainable over the next 25 years in view of the chinese economy. when macy sank europe won't succumb to china and the way the american economy has it is abandoning manufacturing and
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then going back to low-wage service jobs in high unemployment? >> i think one of the great mess hall and around our economic system is about growth and somehow you need to have these roaring growth rates in order freer economy to prosper for people to prosper and certainly if your country like china which has vast inequality at this point in order for to reach anyone at the bottom and has to trickle a long way this. the u.s. we also have a trickle down economy where an order to reach people at the bottom it has to trickle longways and what you're came up with is more commonly known as a steady state economy read don't need as high growth rates because they're better essentially doing more with less and that's the challenge of the 21st century
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and how we do more with less. that's for europe as cultivated the skill sets if you will appear not only institutions of economic institutions and social institutions and energy transportation also in terms of how he will spread this around to your neighbors and unions. one of the greatest form policies in the history of the planet and other parts are trading their own unions and not american and other places as the start replicating what europe has done. vioxx over europe they have their challenges and this is a disneyland here. two have their ups and downs in the global economy, but what they cultivated is a west to east economy in which a lot of the assembly line work is done and those of the poor, economists countries then needed infrastructure and business so a
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fair amount of of the low-tech assembly line work drifted there. i hear tech work is needed in western europe's other is a nice flow west to east in that way to the point where japan and china and the u.s. have set up shop in europe because they want access to this user european target. but american businesses american businesses make 20 times more profit in europe and china. the numbers not in close. so in order to keep this going have to keep manufacturing and we've seen germany putting so much emphasis on export and i think that's part of the german that expands and the rest of the manufacturing exports and i'm reminded of a famous interview that tony blair did with german chancellor, one of the most
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fascinating and import leaders in the world of dot because she's a conservative politician and she's leading germany to do things that the u.s. needs to do. she's pushing these policies before her have as well. she was in an interview with britain and he said to her how does germany duet. of the largest exporters of the world how you do it and she said we still make things mr. blair. [laughter] this isn't rocket science. some matter of having the attitude that you've got to make things and make sure laws conform to that value. we directed our laws and took out all sorts of laws that allow american manufacturers to ship
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jobs overseas in order to increase their profits and deregulatory atmosphere that has led to the collapse. at this washington consent has collapsed around our years at this point in the world is looking for another model and i think you're pass something. [applause] >> thank you. matt miller, we have three of four minutes left. in your book says that kids will earn less than we do, i found that a chilling chapter in digitalis' about that in three minutes? >> i will try and do a minute if you want to have the question number two. as a one of the debt is his kids will learn more and that is a part of the american creed and then every subsequent generation will have higher standards of living, the date is about 100 million are living in families earning less than their parents did a similar age and
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this before we paid the impact of full integration of china, india and other rising economic powers so i think we're in for several rough decades in this adjustment to the rise of these new powers but just like britain facing similar thing at the end of the 19th century that doesn't mean that we can get back on a kind of broadly shared rising escalator of living standards and doesn't mean you can have a great life in america even if your family facing wage strains because of these adjustments. >> we have three minutes left, we will take one short question. >> the palace in optimistic the light of the fact that we still have the same people in power with the same bad ideas and probably will be very difficult to get meaningful financial reform, is there a possibility of a second crash? >> there is a possibility.
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roger? [laughter] >> yes especially if we don't learn. >> over here? >> that would be a major corporate interest in europe and the same influence on government as here? >> i would say no, in europe there's no corporate donaã#
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under and i think it's important that we recognize capitalism aulos failure and we need to reintroduce a system that allows banks to fail. at the same time letting the whole banking system go under is very bad thing to happen. >> can you just for a minute tape releases of steve and roger because roger has a very strong body language when steven was speaking. [laughter] >> roger, do you want to comment on stephen? >> i only have one thing to say which is on the european and i
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moved here for a reason. [laughter] [applause] >> how many decades was that ago, roger? >> the world has changed. >> i never give away my age. [laughter] >> that concludes this session, thanks to our panelists and everyone for coming. [applause] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] ..
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>> his book is here "religious extremism in the age of globalization" is the subtitle of this book.
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if you happen to be in the ucla area, the c-span book is here. we have some book bags passing out to all the fair-goers. about 130,000 people are expected here over yesterday and today. and our live coverage continues. we've got about another 2 1/2 hours of coverage. reza aslan as i just mentioned will be coming up. and then we'll have author charles bodin to talk about violence and we have a call-in and she will be talking about her captivity in iran. and she's written a book about her experience there. all that coming up on our live coverage at ucla. everything that you see will be rebroadcast so that will be, 10:00 pm on the west coast. so you can watch everything we've covered today beginning at 10:00 pm on the west coast once again.
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so we will be right back with reza aslan and a call-in program. >> we're here with marji ross, can you tell us what is the latest in your series of politically incorrect guides. >> sure. this is a series that we launched about four years ago. and it was based on the idea that people have a sense in the conservative movement that they're not really getting the facts, the information, the history on a lot of subjects, whether it's in school or from the mainstream media. and our goal is to bust some myths and to try to tell the real story without worrying about political correctness. we started with the politically incorrect guide to american history, which was a big bestseller. and we now have 20 books in the series. the most recent one is just out. it's called "the politically
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incorrect guide to the vietnam war." it's particularly nice to have these books at cpac because there are so many students and so many young people. and this is a series of books that really in a lot of ways position for a younger market who again feel that they don't really know the truth about what happened. they hear about things like the vietnam war. and they hear the vietnam war compared to the war on terror. and yet, they have a sense that they're not getting the real story. and so this book is designed to say, you didn't get the real story on the vietnam war. and you're probably not getting the real story on the war on terror. from the current administration because of their political agenda. >> last year you had the ultimate man's survival guide. was that a big survival guide for you and is that another series. >> thank you for asking. we are actually talking about
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starting a series of ultimate man's survival guides. this is a very successful book for us. it's a lot of fun. and it's also the kind of book that covers a wide range of topics from a conservative family values sort of rugged independence kind of point of view. and again, this is another book that has appealed greatly to a younger audience. and a lot of people i know bought the book and gave it to their son when they went to college or when they got married. it's a very fun and interesting book. and it's something that we will do more of. >> who is your bestselling author at present? >> right now, our hot book, if i can say it that way, is "courting disaster" it's from a chief speechwriter from the bush white house and they make a strong argument that the cia
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interrogation program was a reason that there was not another attack against us after 9/11. it's pretty remarkable. there was never another attack. has not been one since then. he argues that's because of the cia interrogation program. and that when president obama came into office it was dangerous and risky thing to do. he also has a very, very interesting argument about the whole question of torture and whether or not the tactics really did qualify as torture. he makes a strong argument both on a practical sense and a moral sense that it wasn't torture. and that not only did we have had valuable information that we were careful on staying on the right line of those tactics. it's gotten a lot of talk. even last sunday on the talk
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shows when you heard dick cheney and joe biden debating. and i think this book sparked a lot of that current debate. >> what's coming up for 2010. >> what's coming up. you had newt gingrich here in our booth. and we have a big new newt gingrich book coming in april. we're very excited about that. we've published his last three big nonfiction political books. and the -- they've all been bestsellers. his last big political book was called "real change" and it came out during the presidential campaign. so he hasn't had a book since president obama has come in to office. and now it's his chance to sort of give a report card on how the obama administration has done. and what he feels we need to do to get the country back on track. >> and we see ann coulter is up here. >> she's a political commentator and writer for human events
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which is a weekly conservative newspaper that our parent company publishes. and human events has been in business for over 60 years. and ann coulter is one of their best loved writers and she writes for human events. and that's her sort of editorial home. so we continue to publish her -- her in the paper and also we have a weekly eletter that we send out to a million subscribers for free. when she writes her column, people can subscribe to that that. >> what's the relationship between regnery and eagle. >> regnery is our parent company and eagle is a multimedia conservative publishing company that owns human events, regnery publishing, the conservative book club, red state and a group of financial newsletters as well.
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and we all come together for the same mission of promoting conservative values and serving the conservative marketplace but it's a nice combination of publishing businesses that cover a number of different media. >> are you here every year? how long have you been here? >> human events has been one of the cosponsors with acu of cpac for decades. so we've had a long presence here. it's a great show. i really like coming to this show to meet all the folks that we're writing books for and publishing newspapers for. it's good. >> thank you very much, marji. >> thank you very much. >> back live at l.a.'s festival of books here on the campus of ucla. c-span's bus is here.= our call-in set is set outside haines hall where a lot of the panelists are being held. and now joining us is the author
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of this book "beyond fundamentalism" reza aslan. reza aslan, this book was originally named "how to win a cosmic war" why the original name and why did you change it? >> yeah, originally the hardcover was called "how to win a cosmic war." mostly to trick people into buying it twice, i think -- the book came out before the obama administration and it was an argument about the problem of religious extremism and the way in which the language of our wars and our conflicts have become fused with the language of religion. and ultimately the argument of that book was to put away the clash of civilization's war on terror rhetoric. well, president obama came into power and he pretty much did exactly that. release the paperback of the book, i went in and wrote a sort of a post-obama version of the book.
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one about -- we've gotten oneb and taken care of the rhetoric how do we deal with the nuts and bolts of religious extremism in the world. >> why is globalization important in getting rid of religious extremism. >> i'm glad you asked that. a lot of people think as the world becomes closer and as globalization takes away the boundaries and the barriers that separate us as nation states and as human beings become more secularized, more technologically advanced, et cetera, that ultimately we'll get rid of religion and get rid of god and religious extremism will go away. the opposite has happen. the more secular society gets the more technologically it gets and more scientifically literate we looks like the more religious human beings become. it's allowing for a resurgence of religious identities.
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>> are all religious views extreme? >> no, of course not. but i think religiousocity lends itself to religion very simply. there's a simple reason, i think. religion is a powerful identity forming mechanism. part of human society is figuring out who's us and who's them, right? who is my group and who is the out group. if you pray like me, if you eat like me, if you go to the same, you know, church as i do, then you're us. and if you don't, then you're them. and you can see very easily how that kind of us/them in group/out group mind set can lead to extremism and marginalism. as i remind people, religion may be the most powerful form of identity formation. but just as powerful is violence.
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how do you know if you're us or them, you're fighting with me you're with me. if you're against me you're them. these are extremes that they should have nothing to do with others, they have as everyone knows throughout history been much more aligned than we would like them to be. >> reza aslan is our guest.@@/%
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sovereignty, over territory has become understood on all sides and even here in the united states among the very large christian evangelical community here as, you know, ground zero for end-time events. as, you know, the sort of -- as apocalyptic conflict much more than a conflict on earth. and so all the issues of identity, of religious violence, of the breakdown between the line that separates religion and politics all take place in israel. israel is the perfect location for this book. >> but you also report that you had to lie about the reason you
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were in israel. >> yes. well, you know -- >> why is that? >> one of the reasons i'm fascinated is how our identity is formed, ethnic identity, religious identity every aspect of whose identity is in one way or the other a threat to israel. my gender is male. my religion is muslim. my citizenship is american but my nationality is iranian. my ethnicity is persian. my culture is middle eastern. everything about me is -- sends off, you know, all the warning signals for israel. and so the experience of an iranian-american single man trying to get through the airport in the 21st century is a reminder to everyone that despite the way that globalization has brought us closer and diminished the
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boundaries that separate us as nations, as ethnicities, as people and as cultures -- despite all of that, all you got to do is spend a few minutes trying to get through the airport to remember that those divisions, those things that separate us are still very much alive. >> so what's the conclusion of your book? >> the conclusion of the book is that religious extremism is something that's going to be with us. as long as people of faith exist, there will be those who will use religion, their faith to express radical ideologies even violent ideologies. the question is how do you deal with those groups. and the argument in the book is that the best way to deal with those groups is not engage them at their levels. this goes back to the war on terror comment i was making earlier. if you declare war on a terrorist, guess what? he's not a terrorist anymore. he's now a soldier. which means his terrorism is now considered war.
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so we legitimatize groups like al-qaeda with our own religiously polarizing language. and i think the key to, you know, going back to the original title -- the key to winning a cosmic war is to refuse to fight in one in the first place. >> reza aslan, what do you do in california? >> i do a lot in california. but i teach at the university of california riverside. a wonderful college about 70 miles southeast of where we are here at ucla. i live here in los angeles but i mostly write. writing is my -- is my passion and i do a little bit of work in the entertainment industry trying to create films that deal with topics about the middle east. >> what do you teach? >> i teach creative writing. i'm in the creative writing department. i teach students both fiction and nonfiction. i also have a number of seminars that i teach on religious issues. after all my ph.d. is in religion. but i also have an msa in writing.
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so i kind of straddle both worlds. >> do you consider yourself religious? >> i consider myself a person of faith. i consider myself a muslim insofar the metaphors, the symbols of islam i find are the symbols that i am most comfortable with in trying to define my role in the world, my feelings of the sort of experience of the define. -- divine. these are hard to put into words. i really as a scholar of religions recognize that all religion really is, is a language. it's a set of words that like any language help us to communicate these experiences. not just to each other but, of course, also to ourselves. and it's the language of islam that makes the most sense to me. >> and why did you leave iran in 1979? >> well, i left iran in 1979
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with other people as a direct result of the iranian revolution. my family like so many families here in los angeles or as those of iranians of some 300,000 iranians who live in southern california refer to it terror angeles, we here -- most of us came in 1979 and frankly most of us thought it would be a very short trip. that we would be right back after, you know, the post-revolutionary chaos settled down and most of us found it's very difficult to go back to the country of our birth. >> the shah's son is here, isn't? -- isn't he? >> the shah's son is rich enough to be in many place, he's here, he's in paris and switzerland. he has a pretty good following here in los angeles. a lot of what we referred to as monarchists. >> are you one? >> no, i'm definitely not a monarchist. it's funny because this is a very diverse community here. iranian community here in los
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angeles. we've got the monarchists. we've got the communists. we've got the people who are secularists. we've got the people who support the regime. i as a scholar like to sort of balance them all and just be neutral and just think about what's best for iran. >> first call up for the author of this book, "beyond fundamentalism." >> caller: i have a couple of questions for you. number one can you name some of the movies about the middle east your company has produced? and number two, what do you think muslim countries should do to combat fundamentalism? and how successful do you think they will be at doing that. >> those are two great questions. so some of the movies that we've worked on are movies like "rendition," "body of lies." we have a movie coming out in a couple of weeks here that everybody in l.a. is pretty excited about called "percent of persia" the disney film.
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we facilitate those movies. we help them make them more real. make them with integrity and then we help them publicize it. i think the second question that you asked is an important one. there's socioeconomic aspects to fundamentalism and extremism in a lot of muslim majority states. the truth is when you look at countries like jordan and saudi arabia or egypt or iran, you're talking about autocratic regimes in which people don't get an opportunity to voice their political concerns. and when it comes to a lot of these arab countries that are our america's greatest allies we're talking about a secular dictatorship which in particular repress overtly religious political views. so i do think that the key -- and this goes back to the bush doctrine, right? the key to really fixing the problem of radicalism in the muslim world is by giving greater voice. not less voice but greater voice
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to these communities so that there is a political platform for them to express their views. and not feel as though they have to rely on, you know, the mosque. i mean, i always say this all the time. if the only open space -- if the only free space in a society is the mosque, then, of course, political opposition is going to first become religious opposition. and secondly, become extremist opposition. but if there is a place for people to air their political views the way we have in here in the united states, then it is a fundamental fact that political participation can moderate religious tendencies. i'm sorry, religious extremism or extremist tendencies. >> east palto alto california you're on >> caller: i love your work and i've seen you on several appearances. >> thank you. >> caller: i just had a few questions first. i'm curious as to why fundamentalism is so popular now. and i agree with you that sort
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of a neotranscendentalism. but i also agree with you that it doesn't help to elevate al-qaeda. but surely there's some benefit to the language we use in our domestic political discourse on this. and so i imagine that type of oppositional sort of -- what critics might call fearmongering serves a purpose or would you agree with john substitute who calls fox news as the lupus of news. and lastly just a very quick question, what specifically would you advise, say, a progressively social cause like gay and lesbian equality to do to effectively communicate with the fundamentalist islamic perspective? >> those are very, very good questions. i mean, part of the thing about fundamentalism you have to understand is that it's a reactionary phenomenon. it is a reaction to whatever.
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secularism or liberalism or progressivism. it's not an independent ideology. it needs something to react to. as long as we have reaction we are going to have fundamentalism because we are always going to have people who because perhaps they feel left behind by the progress of society or by certain, you know, theological notions that are no longer relevant to the modern world who are going to react to those movements and we worked the fundamentals of their faith which is where we get the term to begin with. but i think part of addressing the problem of fundamentalism as you rightly say has a lot to do with how we talk about it. i mentioned george bush a little while ago, you know, when bush said in that famous speech immediately after september 11 to both houses of congress when he said, quote, in this conflict there is no neutral ground, you're either with us or you're with the terrorists, well, a couple months later an
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al-jazeera reporter said to bin laden, he said, quote, he took the words right out of my mouth. it doesn't take a genius to figure out if you've taken the words out of osama bin laden's mouth you've already lost. so the words that we use do matter. how we describe this conflict matters. talking about it as a battle of good and evil only validate these viewpoints because that's what they truly believe. we can't talk about these conflicts the way they do because as much as we try, and we have been trying, we cannot outfanatics these fanatics. we need to take a deep breath and recognize that these terms like war on terror only justify and legitimatize the terrorist viewpoints and deal with the fundamental grievances that are at the heart of these terrorist
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actions. >> baltimore, good afternoon. you're on with reza aslan. >> caller: good afternoon. i find your title somewhat disingenuous. i'm wondering why you didn't refer to muslim fundamentalism. because that's exactly what we're talking about. we're not talking about baptist fundamentalism or morman or buddhist or the high fundamentalism. so unless in your book you're discussing what christian fundamentalists have done lately to thousands of people, i don't believe it should be expressed -- i don't believe we should discuss it in terms of good and evil. i think we should just discuss it in people who want to fly airplanes into skyscrapers and skill 3,000 people and those who don't. >> uh-huh. >> we got the point. >> the book is about fundamentalism and the rise of fundamentalism in judeoism
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christianity and islam. it's a real in-depth analysis of the biblical scripture, the scriptural foundation for these cosmic conceptions of, you know, these wars that are actually not on earth but between the angels and the demons. and it talks about the way in which radical versions of judaism, christianity and islam have to be on the rise not just here in the united states where we see a real ascension of radical christian nationalism, these groups called the dominionists or the christianists who believe that the constitution needs to be changed and made in alignment with the bible. it also talks about the jewish fundamentalism in israel and the rise of these ideological settler movements who believe it's for the biblical land of israel who, in fact, argue that the state of israel is nothing more than a place holder to the eventual rebuilding of the
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kingdom of god who have been responsible for a lot of violence in that region. and it also talks about islamic fundamentalism not just the nationalist variety of islamic fundamentalism that we see in places like palestine and lebanon but the transnational versions of islamic nb%
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your books. do you believe that we still have extremism or religious extremism stronger or less stronger? >> well, what you're asking if extremism is becoming stronger or weaker, unfortunately, i think it is becoming stronger. it's becoming stronger because i think people are beginning to identify themselves in religious terms in greater numbers. at the dawn of the 20th century one-half of the world's population identified itself with one of the five great major religions. 100 years of secular nationalism of scientific progress of technological advancement and that number is now two-thirds. so for those who believe that religion is going the way of the do-do the exact opposite is true. it's only natural as people begin to identify themselves more religiously, they will also be more conducive to extremist tendencies. i'm not one of these people who
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believes that the answer to religious extremism is secularism. i think we tried that in the 20th century and it didn't work out all that well. i truly do believe that the answer to religious violence is religious piece. the answer to religious bigot try is religious pluralism. it has to be people of faith, the vast vast majority of jews, muslims, christians, buddhist who are going about their daily lives reconciling their faith and their values with the realities of the modern world, they have to stand up to the extremists within their midsts because it's a community problem as much as it is a global problem. >> this is the book "beyond fundamentalism." you'll get more of reza aslan a little later as booktv's live coverage of the "los angeles times" festival of books continues. thank you for being with us. >> my pleasure. thank you. >> and right now there's another panel happening over here in haines call and it's called current interest,hat we don't
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know can hurt us. we'll be back with a call-in program with charles bodid not. -- bodin. >> it's called current interest. what we don't know can't hurt us. because that's where you are. it reminds me of that bumper sticker -- remember the old bumper sticker. if ignorance is bliss why are there so many unhappy people. [laughter] >> and so i'm -- i hope this isn't the grim reaper panel. but i think it's possible we'll all leave here a little smart but maybe not happier. but it's a nice sunny day. [laughter] >> i guess that's due to global warming. let me start by introducing our
quote
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authors. first i will start with the authors of merchants of doubt, how a handful of scientists obscured the truth on issues from tobacco smoke to global warming. and on my -- well, everybody is on my right naomi is a professor of science studies at uc san diego and is the provost of the college there she began her career as a geologist in the mining industry and has become one of the leading historians of science. for the past 20 years she studied the process of consensus and dissent in science. and asking questions such as how do scientists decide when fact is established. and how do they judge how much evidence is sufficient to deem something scientifically demonstrated. i hope that we'll let you in on some of these issues.
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she and eric conway put their formidable heads together to produce this book, which basically says that the reason that we're all so confused about these questions is that people have been working very hard to confuse us. eric m. conway on my immediate right is a historian of science and technology at the california institute of technology. he studies the history of space exploration and the intersections of space science, earth science and a technological time. a one time electronics technician in the u.s. navy, a student of geomechanics and he began study the history of climate change in 2002 after receiving a nasa contract to write atmospheric science at nasa. a history. and two years later he met naomi which resulted in this book
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which you're going to go out and buy. i don't get paid to do this but i'm a big fan of books. next i'll introduce heather rogers who is a journalist and author and senior fellow at the progressive think tank demos. her first book was "gone tomorrow: the hidden life of garbage" which traces the history and politics of household rubbish in the united states. and her new book is "green gone wrong: how our economy is undermining the environmental revolution." in it she asks if today's green products such as carbon offsets and organic foods and ecocars really have a sfifkt impact. -- significant impact so we'll be talking about that. and last but not least is our own "los angeles times" dean kuiper, right?
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author of "operation bite back." he's an editor of the times and prior to that was at the los angeles city beat and spin. he's a long time writer on the radical environmental movement. his previous book was burning rainbow farm. this one looks at one of the country's most notorious environmental radicals and the legal battles over whether people like him should be prosecuted as terrorists. which interesting began before 9/11. so that's an interesting topic. so i think i would like to start with naomi. in the beginning of this book they tell an interesting story about a supreme court hearing, a case brought by 12 states against the federal government for failing to regulate carbon
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dioxide as a pollutant and you know, with of the lawyers is talking about the atmosphere. and justice scalia gets mixed up asking one of the lawyers a question. [laughter] >> and the lawyer correct him and says, no, no it's the trope sphere and scalia says, whatever, i'm not a scientist. that's why i don't want to have to deal with global warming. you know, according to the book there's a lot of people still in this country who don't want to deal with it or aren't even still convinced it's an issue to be dealt with. maybe 40% of the population. so i would ask how an average audience, how average americans, average journalists who often get it wrong can cut through all of this reporting on global warming or secondhand smoke or
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acid rain and distinguish between what is settled science and what you describe here as bad science or no science trodded out to knock down these arguments. >> it's a really good question. it's a really difficult one and that's in a way why we wrote the book because there isn't a simple sound bite answer. if you read the book i think what you'll see is how we describe how these various attempts are made to create what we call a scientific village. things that look like science, sound like science but they aren't really and so it means we actually have to pay attention to the sources of our information. both journalists and ordinary people. and i was reminded there's that great scene in the film "ghost bust -- ghost busters where he says stand back, ma'am, we're scientists. they have scientific credentials which make it credible but they
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aren't really doing scientific research. who are these people and are they really doing the research? and so it means that one has to look for sources from genuine centers like the national center for atmospheric research or the intergovernmental panel on climate change. these are the places where the real science is being done. places like the american enterprise institute the competitive prize, the heritage foundation these are not places where real science is done. >> but as you point out in your book there are a number of really well-known scientists who are doing this. are these people who have been bought off? are they a part of some conspiracy? and if so, why?
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and do you think they believe they're being objective or do they believe that they are being paid well to knock down established science? >> it's i think three questions if i counted correctly. [laughter] >> in the first -- it's the simplest part to answer is do we think it is a conspiracy, the answer is no. conspiracies are of people trying to be anonymous with closed doors and lots of smoke and sometimes guards. this was not. this was done by people who were very well-known. who were attached to well-known institutions. naomi named some of them. and right under our noses it was done quite publicly and we'd simply chosen to ignore it. it's not a conspiracy. it's a network of people interested in a particular set of things. so what are those things? our scientists and we focused really on a handful of very reputable scientists and in the
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middle of their career and science managers no longer really had -- were no longer doing scientific work in the sense of doing research on data sets and publishing in journals and so forth. they became managers. they were also cold war conservatives. they were interested and became interested -- were very convinced in the need to compete with -- compete with communism through free market capitalism. and after they retired from active research and even being science managers they became more and more political actors and not scientific ones. and what they were promoting is a particular form of economics, libertarian economics. sometimes it's called neoliberalism is a larger term of it. but they became convinced that they needed to promote this. and to answer the final question, are they being objective or are they simply bought off or are they lying? and the answer is, if you
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believe strongly enough in the thing no matter what that thing is you need to be objective. you can't look at the data anymore and see what the people who don't really care what the political outcomes of the interpretation are. and that's what i see. and i think naomi sees. in the work of our actors towards the ends of their lives as they're working more and more. as political actors. they became really convinced that they were right. everyone else is wrong. and they were -- they parlayed that through this network into enormous amounts of confusion about the science of climate change. >> and we'll come back to that. >> heather, the first time i flew -- i went to asia and i flew from hong kong to shanghai to beijing and i realized i
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couldn't see the earth for, you know -- just forever, why am i recycling my garage in the united states? -- garbage in the united states? it seems so hopeless. in your book you talk about how many of the things that we do now may seem and may well be insufficient. taking our bags to the grocery store or they may be counterproductive like automobiles powered by corn fuel, which produces as many problems as it solves. and you also describe how the dire problem of the climate crisis that many people are trying to answer it with the next phase of consumerism and environmental consumerism. so the answer to all of the garbage in the air or the hole in the atmosphere that we produce is to consume
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differently. and i would ask you, is this hopeless? is this entirely wrong? is everyone misguided to be doing these things? should they not be doing them? >> yes. there's some things that -- you know, the choices -- mt@@@
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so one of the things -- you know, it's interesting because confusion is also a really big part of how this plates a lot of people buy organic food, for example, and wonder like is this really doing -- is this really helping? a lot of people increasingly people are offsetting their carbon emissions from flights or driving or from their home energy use, is that really work? where does that money go? and so i looked into this -- [inaudible] >> there's deforestation happening in order to expand our crop land and that carbon is not offset but we believe that it is. and so we end up with an environmental equivalent of collateralized debt obligations, you know, fake environmental wealth. the other thing is if we're not -- if we're continually looking at the symptoms as a
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place -- as a site to solve environmental crisis, we're missing the key aspects of how to really solve this. which is to deal with our economic and political systems. and you hear it all the time. people say oh, we're not doing this. we have the technology we need. we can do so much with existing technology. there's no lack of know how. there's no lack of material. we can do this but everybody always says it's a lack of political will. so how do we start to get our political system to function in a mature way, you know, to be able to actually address the stuff and to give us more options. and how do we shift our economic system so that it's not based on endless intensification and expansion of consumption be it slightly green or not. and that sort of greening of consumption is a way -- you
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know, it can improve things a little bit. definitely. but it is in no way in proportion to the kinds of changes that need to happeng6ñ e you're saying recycling versus the massive, you know, pollution of the atmosphere. >> may i add something to that because i really appreciate that comment one of the things we talk about in our book that's relevant to that is that one net result of all the activities that we've researched the american people are confused. we're confused as individuals but it's really important to note that that wasn't the purpose of these activities. the purpose was not to confuse individuals. and prevent individuals from bringing their own bags trader joes. the purpose was to stop government action, to stop government interaction on climate change to undermine the kyoto protocol to cast doubt on the montreal protocol. it was to stop the big action to
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make a difference. what we do as individuals definitely matters. and we want to feel empowered as individuals. what happens on the levels of states, governments and international protocols is hugely important. and that's really where the axis of our story lies. >> right. also the role of markets. of, you know, industries, manufacturing. i mean, they don't want these controls. that's where the muscle comes in to keep them from being realized. >> let me go to dean and introduce his topic. dean has written about rod coronado, who was a man who has sunk whaling boats and smashed shops that sold fur and contributed to a campaign of arson. the law treats him as a terrorist which is something you take issue with in the book. you say that prior to 1992, he
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would have been treated as a sabatour. i'm curious to know what you think of such movements that feel that they need to go outside the law to have an impact? and what insights you've gotten into these people. why do they feel that's necessary? and effective? >> well, they're frustrated for one thing. about the fact that it's difficult to address for the same issues that we're talking about here. these things are so confusing and there's a lack of political will to make big chapgz. there are a lot of people who take it upon themselves to be a solo actor and decide by himself, rod coronado he thought he could make a huge change. and it wasn't all that farfetched actually for what he did. just briefly, briefly. he saw that there was a way that he might be able to shut down the fur industry in the early '90s.
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his tactics are not something that i agree with. he identified a number of researchers who basically were the backbone of all the feed and the disease research and so forth to support the mink industry. and he figured if he could shut down those people that he could shut down the 600 farms that were operating. in the country. and he came pretty close actually. they were definitely scared of him. and they were definitely scared of the things that he was doing. but scare is the operative word. and that's where, you know, the laws began to change around this guy. rod coronado starting in '92. the definition of a terrorism basically changed in 1992. from being acts of aggression of threat of violence to people to acts of aggression or threat to property. and that's a little known change that probably not a lot of people knew about and certainly not at that time and they didn't really use it against rod or any people like him until much later.
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and then as the laws changed a little bit later in 96 after the oklahoma city bombing it got ramped up again. not that many people were paying attention until really 9/11 and the patriot act. and there's a couple lines that are written into the patriotic act that probably escaped a lot of notice because that was a big thick law that most people just shuffled across their desk and signed. that specifically looped in environmental activists as being somebody who is prosecutable as a domestic terrorist. that's where the trouble starts. it's not, you know, somebody like me -- i don't agree with arson. and i don't agree with some of the tactics that rodney has used and other people like him. i'm sure there's some people aren't sorry to see a sunk whale ship. this was way before any of that
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when they were not massive popular and he snuck into iceland and sunk half of their whaling fleet in the middle of the night. the difficulties of this the definition of nonviolence for rodney he thought that being the ultimate nonviolent action because no people were harmed, no animals were harmed. in fact, he saw it as saving life because he was destroying the machinery that destroyed life. that's an important distinction. and the people who are doing these things look at themselves as being nonviolent dedicated to pure nonviolence. they literally can't hurt a flea. now that damaging property is domestic terrorism, that now has started to immediately creep outward into areas that we did consider previously legitimate protest and that's why i wrote the book is because now in 2006, the next sort of generation of law was the animal enterprise terrorism act which makes --
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there's three cases i think being prosecuted right now where the people are being prosecuted for doing things standing in front of someone's home and chanting and doing chalk drawing on the sidewalk. those things were definitely before that law considered to be free speech and protected under the first amendment and they are not now. and these people can get a terrorism charge and they can -- and if you get a terrorism charge with a felony and a federal felony you can also get a terrorism sentencing enhancement which is at the judge's discretion. so if you get an angry judge you can get ears added to the sentence. it's become very, very important that exactly how you protest. >> and what's the impact of these legal changes been on the forms of protest? >> so far it hasn't had much impact. but the animal enterprise terrorism act will make a different.
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the first trial right now that is looking into this letter being used under this law. and if one of these people get prosecuted and get convicted i think it will change a lot because then suddenly you can't just march up and down in front of someone's business and chant or in front of their homes and chant. it becomes very, very difficult to figure out exactly how you protest under those conditions. >> naomi, you make something of a distinction between what you said earlier that these companies aren't trying to influence individuals, it's legislators and legislation. but, of course, legislators are elected by individuals. and constituencies. and they are responding to public pressure. there has been a shift in public opinion in the right direction over in recent years. even though 40% are still unclear about global warming.
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60% -- a majority are now clear and we have a president now who seems to get it, i think. maybe you'd disagree. >> i don't know, he hasn't invited me for a beer yet. [laughter] >> how do you -- you know, what is the next step that the public needs to know in order to pressure their legislators, congress -- what do they still need to know? what don't they know that's hurting them? about global warming? >> i think we need to really feel -- not just know but really feel in our guts that legislation action is actually long overdue. that one of the things that we talk about in the book is how the science of this has really been settled from the early to mid-1990s. the u.n. framework convention on climate change which was developed in 1992 was essentially based on the scientific understanding of the reality of global warming.
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so we've had a nearly 20-year delay now because of the activities described in our book. in fact, one of the depressing pieces of information actually is that if you look at public opinion polls, we actually have not made any progress since the mid-1990s. in the mid-1990s, 60% said there was global warming and it was caused by human activity and we've gone backyard and we need to work harder to regain the ground we lost. it's important for people to understand that. that, in fact, we went backwards and yet there's definitely momentum now but people thought they had momentum back in the 90s. you know, for me one of the saddest quotes in the book we interviewed a man who's a prominent leader who served on the councils for environmental quality in the carter administration, right? so this is how far back this discussion goes. and when i interviewed him and asked him about the events in the late '80s, early '90s surrounding the u.n. framework
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on climate change, he said -- he sighed yeah we thought we were on track to make real progress. and that was 20 years ago. so that's what i think we need to know. we need to understand how much time we've lost. how it's not how we only sorted this out scientifically now. we've understood it scientifically for a long time. action has really been delayed. we've really lost time and we need to really in a way make up that lost ground and move forward rather briskly. and the other thing that i think is important is i think -- eric and i had a long talk about this last night. how we do this exactly is not important. we just need to do something. so right now this big argument is starting to develop in congress about cap-and-trade versus carbon taxes and there are certain people in the republican party who are saying, oh, well, you know, we're not really sure about this cap-and-trade thing, you know, we really haven't had a full discussion of the alternatives. that is just frankly untrue. i mean, we've been discussing these alternatives for 20 years.
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and, in fact, the irony, paradox and if you want to go further maybe hypocrisy about some of the current criticism of cap-and-trade is that cap-and-trade was developed initially as a conservative or moderate response against carbon tax which was seen as more liberal because liberals like taxes and conservatives didn't. and the liberal environmental movement in a way accepted cap-and-trade is a kind of modern thing to have evoke the power of the marketplace. so for the conservatives to turn against it now, you know, is incredibly unfair. let's just say. so it's really important for us to understand that, you know, al gore wanted a carbon tax back in the, what, '93 -- back in 1993. you know, al gore was promote ago carbon tax. the right wing creamed him about that set of carbon tax to destroyed the economy and losing jobs which is untrue.
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and so environmentalists moved toward this cap-and-trade mechanism as something that might be more politically palatable to broader spectrum of people and i think that's really important for us to remember that. my view whether we go for cap-and-trade or carbon tax, it really doesn't matter. most mechanisms can work but we need to do something. and we need to not &%á@@@ @
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if all that happens is the reduction in u.s. emissions and not in others, the global warming problem will continue and get worse. so it is ultimately important that there's an agreement at least amongst major emitters, you know, the countries responsible for 90% of it or so which is something like 25 countries or less. but those countries like china are not going to do anything if we don't because at this point, we have been talking the talk and refusing to walk the walk. i mean, we're the ones who pulled out of the kyoto protocol after being the people pushing to negotiate it in the first place. so i think that -- and foreign policy is not my study, not my expertise. but i can't imagine why china would sign an agreement that we hadn't already signed. and i was critical of the drive to have the copenhagen summit last fall because without a --
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without a piece of legislation already passed in the u.s., i was quite certain it would fail. >> i forgot to introduce myself. [laughter] >> i'm marjorie miller from the "l.a. times." and what reminded me was a copy of the "l.a. times." [laughter] >> which i also try to promote every chance i get. so buy the paper, too. there was a story in this on friday. and heather, i wanted to ask you about the efforts like this one in tokyo where the city is basically taking its garbage and recycling and using thesjñ filtering it for toxins and using the ash and turning it into building material and the heat into electricity. it's a big project. and i just wonder, you know, does this matter? you know, are projects on this scale -- you know, at what point do all of these things from the
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bag to trader joes to tokyo's project add up into something considerable? i think it's very, very easy for people to feel hopeless. >> uh-huh. >> and so what should average people be supporting? should they be supporting projects like this? should they just be writing to their congress people? ..
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>> they're building cities in an environmentally disastrous way, and the united states is aiding and abetting that. one of the things that i want to say is just in terms of hopelessness. there's, you know, people can easily feel hopeless about the situation and about, you know, hearing this kind of information, and i just want to say there's a difference between hope and false hope. so if we have, if we sort of protect this sense of false hope, we're not doing ourselves any good. but if we kind of are able to get information and open our eyes about it, then we can start cultivating real hope, and that is absolutely crucial. just another point, if we don't have larger structural change like the kinds of changes that they're doing in tokyo are good, but, you know, say those efficiencies that are gained go right back into a system that's
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based on growth and not based on, you know, i think there's a difference between growth and development. and you can have development in a way that improves livelihoods and maintains a high quality of life. you think -- you can do that with a different economic model or a changed economic model that is tuned to fit our needs now. and if you don't do that, you end up with the kinds of efficiencies that they're going to gain in tokyo going, you know, instead of sort of being retired, those efficiency gain are going to go right back into growing the economy which means, you know, increasing production, increasing consumption. and, you know, that's something that people often talk about here even. you know, we need better, we need more efficiency. change our lightbulbs, you know, you'll lose less electricity. when walmart transforms its
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truck fleets to low-energy vehicles and changes its lightbulbs, it doesn't, you know, sort of retire that energy, it uses the money it saves from that to build another walmart and another walmart and another walmart. so that's the type of thing that we need to get a handle on. >> so are you saying capitalism and environmentalism are incompatible? [laughter] >> well, i have to come in there because that's what these guys thought, right? that's why they turned against environmentalism because that's what they believed. i think it's incredibly important not to go down that path. i think there are many ways in which capitalism will be reformed, expanded, adjusted. you know, i was thinking as we were talking about the story of slavery. a story i've been thinking a lot about, what are the historical
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analogies for situations that are as significant as what we're facing here today? slavery was in some ways comparable because it took a really long time to sort out, it had economic and moral consequences, and we ended up having a war, right? so that really wasn't a good solution, right? that wasn't a good way to tibet around it. -- get around it. but the fact is that the country did go on, the south did continue, the south did rebuild it economy, right? there was more than one way to run the economy of the south. it didn't have to have slaves, right? and that was the crucial thing that people had to get past and had a really great -- so i don't think we have to abandon capitalism. >> can i jump in there? >> yes. you may disagree. [laughter] >> so, i mean, capitalism didn't need slaves, but it needed laborers. so, you know, capitalism needs nature, you know? what does wealth come from? that's the kind of question we need to be asking.
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where does it come from, and if we must continually grow, i mean, look, human beings need to use materials that we take from nature, we have to. we have to learn how to coexist with nature and to, you know, take what we need, give back what nature needs. we have to have a socioecology, and so you have that. but then you also have to look at, okay, where does wealth, you know, where does surplus value, where does surplus wealth get, you know, where does it come from? and if we don't critically assess that, you know, within capitalism and if we don't allow ourselves to introduce new ideas, new kinds of economies, then i think, you know, we're going to run up against those kind of rules of capitalism over and over again. >> dean, you say that the changes in the law haven't dramatically affected the
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eco-warrior movement, but how effective has the eco-warrior movement been in achieving its goals? >> well, i say it hasn't affected them a great deal in the way that they protest, but it has put a lot of them in jail, so -- >> how's that going in there? [laughter] >> not that well. it's one of the other things i actually wrote a piece for the times about, that there is actually a new unit -- speaking of things that we don't know that can hurt us -- there was a unit created in the bureau of prisons called the communications management unit which is about shutting down ideas. and it was designed for -- there's one in marion and there's one in terra hot. most of the people who are in there are muslim men, as you can imagine, caught up with various money-laundering stings post-9/11. two of the folks who ended up in there were a couple of vegan anarchist guys, you know, sworn
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to nonviolent vegan guys. had done a few actions i believe both of them, well, one in the new jersey area and one in the portland, oregon, area. but they, you know, they had got an certain number of years for the crimes they had done, but then they were put in a special unit because they were talking to everybody, and they department really like the fact that -- didn't really like the fact that they were talking to everyone. that's, again, a return to some of the first amendment arguments that have come up. one of the most interesting, of course, being rodney's case. the reason -- i didn't mention this before. the reason i wrote operation biteback, rod, you know, he was an arsonist. he went after some people in universities and so forth who were doing research on animals and burned their labs and burned their offices and burned their research and that kind of thing. which, you know, you shouldn't -- i'm not a proponent of arson. nobody should be out there burning things. but he did, he knew what the result of that would be, you'd
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get five years for arson, and under those current laws back at that time he got caught, and he did exactly five years for arson, and he got out. it was a calculation on his part. he didn't know somewhere down the line there could be a terrorism enhancement on that that could put you in jail for life. also he didn't know about 15, 20 years later he was making a speech in san diego and someone asked him a question about how he used to make his incendiaries, and this is a guy who now has two kids, and he's on a lecture circuit, and he's doing his thing. and he answered the question, and they got him for that. they tried to get him for 18 years for terrorism for answering the question because it's now, you know, i guess you have to watch what you say. it was a very little-known law about teaching people to get incendiaries. they did get him to take a plea, and he did a year and a day. so, you know, as far as how it's affecting -- people are really very confused because, you know, there may not be the political
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will to make some of these big changes that we talked about, but there's plenty of political will to go after targeted anarchists and ecoradicals because it sends a message. we've got to be careful about how far that can be pushed. >> i want to leave plenty of time for questions, so let's just go down the line once more and say, and see if there's something else in your book or that you want to add that you think is very important for people to know so they don't go away ignorant and unhappy. >> [inaudible] [laughter] >> and what, what can hurt us that we don't know that we haven't touched on already? any of you. >> i'm definitely concerned about what this does, for instance, in this instance the
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things that i covered in my book about what this does to the definition of nonviolence. it's a huge summit. anybody -- subject. anybody who's ever done a protest anywhere including just to go to your local store and, you know, protest a product that they have there, do a boycott, any kind of thing. it's concerned about how they do that and what the laws are and the grand tradition of doing protests around these subjects that we're talking about, global warming and everything else. we have to know what the rules are and how we do that in a safe way. those rules are very muddy. it's not to say that a person who chains themselves to the door of the university and says i protest is going to be arrested and get named a detroit, but you're not exactly sure where those lines are now, and that's not fair. you should know where those lines are and then decide whether or not you're going to cross that. >> all right. so we'll open it up to questions. there's a microphone there, and there's one there.
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please, step up. i want to emphasize that we're taking questions, not speeches. [laughter] and usually there are a lot of people who want to ask questions, and the way they get to do that is if people don't make speeches. so i'll start with you. >> okay. for erik or naomi, i think we're suffering from a double whammy with respect to global warming. first, human beings tend to discount future events very steeply with respect to present ones for evolutionary reasons. second, in the u.s. the effect of our calvinist or puritan tradition, the gospel of individualism makes collective problem solving very difficult. comments? >> boy, i'm not sure what to say beyond that i think that's right. it's particularly true because economics is a profession -- as a profession has institutionalized this whole idea of discounting of the future, and that's been a real
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problem for dealing with climate change as policy because for a very long -- if you set the discount rate properly, it becomes almost impossible to economically justify solving any environmental problem. so i think, i think your comment is right. >> but i could add to@@@
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to recede, and secondly, there was a recent article, i believe in "time" magazine telling us in the netherlands they were recycling their garbage. why is it that we can't do the same thing to produce energy? >> you want to answer the recycling question? >> sure. it's not, it's not always that simple to just burn waste. i mean, there are wastes produced from that. but often, you know, there are different ways to handle garbage, and if we can separate out, say, compost bl materials which is done in parts of california, i know, that can be, i think it's something like 50, 40% of everything that goes into landfills could be composted. so, you know, there's all these ways to reduce waste and turn them into something that continues to have value. but, you know, there's all kinds of motivations now in the united states for just landfilling, and it has everything to do with the
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market again. landfilling is the single most profitable aspect of waste handling, and so corporations have every incentive to get as much into the landfill as possible which is why recycling rates have gone down since the early 1990s. >> and the quick answer to the ice age question is the ice ages are very complicated and have lots of causal factors, but the main one is thought to be astronomical cycles and also cycles in the tilt of the earth's axis taking scale on tens of hundreds of thousands of years. so it is true that 5-10,000 years from now the earth's climate may, in fact, begin to cool by natural processes, but meanwhile, global warming is taking place on the scale of decades to centuries, so we can't wait in the next ice age. >> i want to am plify that.
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carbon cycle amplifies the solar radiance change. otherwise the ice ages simply wouldn't happen. that's because the change in solar radiance that occurs is tiny. it's small fractions of a percent. and the carbon cycle feedback is essential to explaining why the ice ages happen. we're actually in the cooling part of the orbit now. >> that's right. things would be cooler if it weren't for the co2, and that's really important, too, because it's the fact of the extreme sensitivity to the co2 feedback which is so important for global warming. very small amounts of co2 change can make very large differences, and that's why this is such a big problem. >> my takeaways from the recent political discourse have been things like terry shy slow, freedom fries, the texas textbook controversy. and exemplified by judge scalia's comments on global
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warming, is our political system ill equipped to deal with these kind of topics? >> well, that seems pretty obvious. [laughter] >> you're all in agreement. >> yes. [laughter] >> what can we do about it? laugh. >> this is, this is the question, you know? and it's a process. it's not a product. you know, i think a lot of people want a sort of program, okay, here you go. one of the things that i do in my book is i also talk about what works, and i spent time in germany in the town of fryberg where there are 15,000 people living on a fraction of the energy that we use. and, you know, their houses use one-fifteenth of the energy that an average house would use, and they have an integrated way of living that, you know, it's not just about the energy they consume, it's about the community, it's about the way that the streets are laid out and where the parks are and
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privileging pedestrians and bicyclists over cars and mass transit over cars. and so there's this, you know, and people that live in these neighborhoods are involved politically to varying degrees, but they are constantly engaged with, you know, the process of being citizens. and they don't see themselves simply as consumers. they understand that when you, that when you vote with your wallet you're actually just shopping. >> the other thick, of course, that you could -- thing, of course, that you could do is you could run for office. >> how do you get the public invested in addressing the problem? of global warming? >> well, i think the public are invested. i mean, a lot of people do care and the fact that all these people are here today talking about it, i mean, i think people are invested. people are also confused about how to move forward, so maybe that'll be our next book tbl.
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>> and the media's so irresponsible about the way -- >> okay, next question. [laughter] >> we don't want to bash the media here, but -- >> you're busted. [laughter] >> yes. they just, they talk about it, you know, they focus on that, say that 40% that doesn't believe. i mean, they get so much air time, and they don't talk about, you know, the 60, the 70%. and so, you know, we need to be talking about that. >> it's not even the 40%. and i agree it's really bad to insult your host. so l.a. times excluded, in full disclosure my sister-in-law writes for the l.a. times. the media have sometimes focused on, like, three scientists on the whole planet who don't believe in global warming and giving them equal time with the ipc which is thousands of scientists from all across the globe who are far too disorganized to be part of any part of liberal conspiracy, you know? [laughter] enough said. >> okay.
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my question goes to the idea that the carrying capacity of the planet and how many people produces. so -- >> to amplify the question it's not quite how many people can it sustain, but how many people can it sustain at an american standard of living? because most of the world wants to be just like us in which case we have a much bigger problem than we really want to think about. >> and which gets back to the issue of the united states has to take the lead. we need to take the lead in doing something about it. >> over here. >> so i'm glad this gentleman asked about negative population growth because if so, what can be done to break through the mind set of denial? also, the idea of capitalism as being incompatible with a no-growth planet. wealth is derived from the exploitation/extraction of human and natural resources, so if,
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you know, with a shrinking population, you know, we would value things far differently. so i was wondering especially the feminine guests on the panel what they would say about changing the mind set of collective denial and no-growth population on the planet. >> well, i'll add to this. i mean, of course, you know, we know, evidence shows that the most effective way to control population growth is to educate women and to give women choices, to give women education, choices in the labor market. women, when given choices, generally choose to only have one or two children, and making birth control available to them. so those are hugely important things, and, of course, we've had a lot of difficulty with that in the united states. so the education for women, opportunity for women, good information about choices, those are crucial. but i also agree with what's been said here. the whole population discussion makes me a little bit nervous because in a way i think it does
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shift the blame. it shifts the focus to those countries where the population growth rates are very high which tends to be places that are poor countries, but those are not the places that are using most of the resources. those are not the places that are producing most of t carbon dioxide, and even in china which has now met the united states in terms of total co2 production although still is below us per capita, about half of the carbon footprint of china right now is producing goods for the united states. so whose carbon footprint is that really? you know? so i think we need to be a little bit subtle and nuanced when we talk about population. as erik says, it's not just about total numbers of people, it's about patterns of usage and historic patterns too. china's still going to have many decades before they catch up with the integrated co2 we have produced here in the united states. >> so i am a scientist that wandered over from the molecular sciences building, and i don't
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work in any of the topics you were talking about, but, you know, i have friends, i have colleagues that work in, you know, atmospheric sciences, material sciences, and it's just sort of frustrating, you know, as a scientist we're producing this information that larger groups collect and, you know, put into statistics. you know, but we feel sort of helpless in terms of what that information we're producing is actually used for. i was wondering if you have any discussions on that, you know, the scientists doing the basic research. what could we do as both scientists and citizens to sort of insure that the information we're producing and putting into society isn't being misconstrued in a way that, well, i personally feel is wrong? thank you. >> want to take this. >> no, i don't want to take that one. [laughter] >> okay. i just had to give him a chance. erik and i talked about this a lot, and it's one of the questions that came up for us in
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the book, and we hope you will read the book because i think you'll find it very interesting. one of the questions we asked, why didn't people speak up in the scientific community? one of the quotes that stays with me the most is i interviewed a very, very leading scientist who was the head of an ocean graphic institution and said to him in an early report in 1983 that kind of begins the whole doubt campaign against global warming comes up, and i said to him, why didn't you say anything about this at the time? he said, well, we knew it was garbage, so we just ignored it. so i think one of the lessons is you can't ignore garbage, right? heather knows that. it doesn't just go away, you know? [laughter] so i think one of the lessons of this is that the scientific community, the people doing the research, the basic science, they have to speak up, and when you see misinformation, if you see something being misrepresented in the l.a. taoisms -- no, sorry, never in the l.a. times in "the
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washington post" you need to write a letter to the editor, have a forum on your own campus. it isn't just enough just to do the science. and one thing we also show in the book is that the other side certainly speaks up. if newspapers have covers they don't like, they get on the phone and say, well, you didn't present our view, and they pressure the media to present their view. it's part of their strategy. i'm not saying you should do that, i'm not saying you should pressure the media and threaten to sue them, but you should be proactive, and so that's my message for the scientific community. it would be nice to be able to live in a world where you could just do pure science and trust that information to get where it needs to go, but that's not the world that we live in. >> i wanted to ask individually if you think about the contradiction of planeloads of ecologists flying to copenhagen and come here consuming fossil fuels and having the newest computer so you can get your message out on the internet knowing full well that it's built with a coal-powered plant
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in china and how you resolve those kind of internal contradictions. >> yeah, those are complicated. i had to -- i went to a different country for each chapter of my book, and one of my chapters was looking at carbon offsets. and in doing that research and the other research i did for my book, i went to indonesia, india, south america, you know, quite a lot of traveling. and, you know, and i thought a lot about how am i going to answer for this, you know? [laughter] but what i walked away with is that i understand that my co2 emissions aren't just mine. they're part of a system, they're part of, you know, the system that we have that's a result of history, of political and economic forces and decisions that have been made. and, you know, like what naomi was just saying about what happens with scientific research, you know, again it's a process. it's not that we can just, you know, have these accomplishments.
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there have been, there have been victories in the environmental movement. but, you know, just having a victory isn't, isn't enough, you know? we have to continue working on it, and, you know, i choose to practice my environmentalism in other ways than buying carbon offsets. >> well, and the environmental groups, too, feel like they have to compete and they have to compete hard, so when they take on an issue, you know, when i was touring around a little bit with the book last summer, you know, i went to places like grist and other places where you take brown bag lunches, and you look at the operation and say we have to make a comment about their operation, we have to be a voice for scientists, that kind of thing. then they need offices, and they need computers, and they need jets and all this stuff. they take it all on like they're a corporate office. and they're struggling with a way to do that in a way that's not, you know, contributing to the problem as you're pointing out, but they also feel like they can't be ham strung by not
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having the best tools available to do that because if they're looking at the other side and the other side is definitely using everything, you know, that's available. so it's a little bit of a tough discussion. >> i'm too short for this mic. [laughter] hi. i had a question for naomi. you briefly touched on this wit
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obscured the truth because this is what we thought was important and staggering about this story was how much damage was done by a relatively small number of people. i suppose the good news is if a small number of people can do a great deal of damage, then a small number of people, in principle, could also do good. so one of the things that this group did early on was create an institute of their own, the george c. marshall institute, which became a center for disseminating challenges to the scientific evidence. and they would be very assertive about sending those challenges to the media, to congressmen, to congressional staffers, they would hold workshops to -- >> and for journalists. >> right. fellowships for journalists to promote free market ideologies. so they've been very, very assertive, and i think, you know, if you read the book, you learn a lot on about their tact. they're not all tactics i would advocate, but some of them are.
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some of them are actually totally intelligent and perfectly legal and we, in fact, could learn from them. they also had a lot of contacts. these were people because they had worked on cold war weapons programs they had a lot of contacts on capitol hill, in the white house. they were powerful and influential people because of what they had done before. and that's really crucial to understanding the story. >> i'm afraid i'm going to have to cut us off. >> of course. yeah, okay, sorry. >> i am so sorry, and i'm especially sorry to you who stood there, but i want to thank all of you. we're not allowed, we have to vacate the room, we have to vacate the airwaves. thank you all so much. [applause] [inaudible conversations]
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>> and booktv's live coverage from the los angeles times festival of books continues. that panel you just saw was on what we don't know can hurt us. one more author panel coming up in about half an hour, and that's on the middle east, facing the realities. and as you can see, the c-span school bus or the c-span bus is here at the l. a. times' festival on the campus of ucla. and we are now joined for the next half hour by author charles boden whose most recent week is this, "murder city," is what it's called. charles boden, where's the united states and be on the other side. >> host: what's it like? >> guest: well, historically, let's say after nafta passed it was a boom town. there was 400 foreign factories,
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probably had a million and a half people. today it's a city of death. in the last three years there have been 5,000 executions. since january 1st of this year there's been 775 executions. 100,000 jobs have left town because of the recession. 25% of the houses have been abandoned because of fear. 40% of the businesses have closed because of people fleeing and the danger, robbery, extortion, murder. i don't know if cities truly die, but this city looks to be dying. >> host: how did that happen? >> guest: it's a combination of factors, you know? is i'll give you, i'll give the short course. the city was always, always had violence, always had poverty. but now starting in december of 2006 the new president of mexico, felipe calderon, to
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assert he was the man, the strong man, unleashed the mexican army on the drug industry. that was a tripping point. murders suddenly started going up. 2007, 307 murders. 2008, 1660 murders. 2009, 2753 murders. coupled with that was something that was going to happen anyway. basically american-owned factories implanted under our free trade policy had created a city of serious poverty. the wages are 50-75 a week. and serious violence because you had all these feral kids. you have to understand in juarez there's a high school for about every 500,000 people. these high schools are not free. 50% of the adolescents now in juarez neither are in school, nor do they have jobs.
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there's 500-900 street gangs. these are not affinity groups or car clubs, these are armed gangs with guns of kids. one of these gangs has 3,000 members. so when calderon unleashed this war on drugs which i don't actually think is real, but when he unleashed it, the violence started erupting. now it's erupting over large areas of mexico, and you can't get the genie back in the bottle because there's fundamental contradictions in mexico that came to the surface. a sinking economy, miserable wages, a lack of human rights, totally corrupt police and army. now, going on to this drug war, since he initiated it, 23,000 mexicans have been slaughtered. since he initiated it, the army fighting what he says are the dr cartels, only about 100
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soldiers have died. this is a kind of strange war to anybody who knows about war. the reality is mexico is dependent on drug money. drug money according to dea earns mexico 30-50 billion a year in hard currency. their second largest source of l irk cit foreign currency are remittances by the 10-15 million mexicans working illegally in the u.s. drugs are far greater than that. the final thing is their oil fields are declining. the president of mexico, the current one, says they'll be exhausted in nine years. that's 40% of the federal budget right there. so you have a recipe for a society that's eroding, and you can see it. each day the president of mexico, his army, his federal police control less and less of the country. each day our, the united states
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government says, we'll support you. but we're fighting a conflict, or we're engaged in a conflict we're not going to win. >> host: who's being murdered? >> guest: poor people. the u.s. government and mexican government says 90% of the dead are dirty, meaning they're drug-related. that's a lie. 90% of the dead are nobodies living in poor houses with nothing. now, you can make the claim -- >> host: then why are they being murdered? >> guest: well, because it's a war for drugs. fifteen years ago there were very few addicts, for example, in juarez. now clinicians say there's 150-200,000 meaning it's like the television program, "the wire." every corner, now, is worth money. there's thousands of places they're selling drugs. drugs are cheap. the second thing is simply poverty. that the united states will not face in its free trade program
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hasn't produced well. when president bill clinton endorsed nafta and got it passed, he said it would end illegal immigration, and it would raise the standard of living in mexico. it has not. that is not true. we are looking at the largest human migration on earth now. the flight of the mexican poor into the united states to escape doom. >> host: 202 is the area code, 585-3885 if you live in the east or central time zone and want to talk to charles bowden whose most recent week is called "murder city." 202-585-3886 if you live in the mountain or pacific time zones. why do you include the term global economy in the subtitle? >> guest: because juarez is essentially the poster child for our trade policies. starting in the late '60s, it had border assembly plants
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implemented. after nafta everything arrived there. lek ro luxury vacuum cleaners are now made in juarez, car parts are made there. if you're making 50-75 a week in juarez which is what you'll get paid in these factories, your cost of living is 90% the same as the united states. there's no way to live on these wages. these plants, on average, have a turnover in a country of poverty and unemployment of 100-200% a year. i it just -- it just grinds people up. nafta was passed without any provision for living wages. nafta was passed without any environmental controls. nafta was passed without any protection for union organizers. these are essentially slave fact ris. and nobody will admit it. and then they wonder why people get violent. the trigger for the violence was this initiative against drugs, true, but the underlying anger
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and despair was there. we just, as i said, we took the lid off pandora's pox. >> host: if you want to send a tweet to charles bowden, twitter.com/booktv. is this all about marijuana? >> guest: well, it's marijuana, cocaine, meth, heroin. i was talking to one of the guys in the leadership position in the azteca gang. in february of 2008, he's also a chicagoan, contract killer. i said, how much would it cost for me to get heroin today? he said, $2.50 u.s. for a fix. i mean, the poor are using drugs in juarez. the people working are using cocaine. you can go to the poorest barrio, to the crumbiest looking little corner store and people are selling cocaine, for example. so it's all the drugs. there's a huge domestic market down in mexico, and not just on the border. it's spread all over the country
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increasingly because then you don't have to export it. then you don't have to bribe u.s. customs to get your truckload through. your cost of operation is less, and you can replace it with volume. there was a study done two years ago by an academic from the university of california system whose name i can't remember at the moment where he found there were 25,000 retail outlets in tijuana for drugs. this is the thing unspoken. now, you know, the viewers should think about it. what is the war on drugs? i mean, what, what is the premise of a war that says you can get drunk, but you can't have certain other substances? what is the motive behind creating the highest per capita prison population in the world which the united states has? i mean, the war on drugs was lost decades ago, and it was lost because the american people
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don't support it. they use drugs. these mexicans are not bringing drugs next door for aerobic exercise, they're bricking them -- bringing them here for a market. you buy a joint in duluth, it didn't come from sweden. it came from mexico or south america. this is a war against our own people, and a by-product is it has in 36 months slaughtered 23,000 mexicans. >> host: "murder city" is the book. amherst, new york, you're on the air. >> caller: hi. my question for mr. bowden is how much of a factor does he feel is corruption within law enforcement in this country with regard to drugs? how much of a factor is that in the problem of the drugs coming in from mexico? >> host: mr. bowden. >> guest: that's a very good question. look, one of the -- mexico is corrupt, you know? that's part of the system.
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but i have watched since i know people in dea, i have friends in the border patrol, i know people in customs. what this war has done is increasingly corrupt them. if you're in the border patrol, say after five years you're making 75 grand a year, and you know your job is a failure. every day most of the people are getting through. and so what's the difference if you take $100 a head to let a truckload go through? we're taking basically decent americans largely from small communities recruited into these agencies, then putting them and giving them a task that's futile and then putting them in the way of temptation. i'll tell another story. i interviewed a cartel member in juarez, and he had run, he had been running for years loads of marijuana across the bridge without losing a load because he paid people in u.s. customs. so, yes, it corrupts us.
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it's the unmentionable subject. but nobody in these agencies doubts it. you can watch in these agencies the growing distrust between the people in the agencies. >> host: how is it that you're still alive after reporting all this? >> guest: i'm not worth kiãx'5
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in mexico when they can't survive on the wages. >> host: franklin, tennessee. please go ahead. >> caller: yeah. i think one of the issues you have with illegal drugs is you've already got built-in enormous profits. if you totally decriminalize drugs, the prices would go down, and when prices go down, producers leave the market. and the government, governments all over the world love crisis, and they love the metaphoric war whether it's the war on poverty, the war on drugs, the war on this, the war on that because that's the way they like to accrue power unto themselveses. i disagree with mr. bowden, nafta's a good thing. mexican wages have been going up about 15% a year since nafta was enacted, and i'll listen to his comments. >> well, look, one, we have a disagreement. even if wages go up, you have to factor in inflation. mexican wages are consistent
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with the mid '80s. on legalizing drugs or as we say decriminalizing drugs, our society loves fraud. we never legalized gambling, we renamed it and called it gaming and the lottery. but drugs are junk. meaning, they cost very little to produce. the only reason they're profitable is they're illegal. the u.s. government in the early '70s had two studies on marijuana, what would it cost if it were legal. one study said it would be the price of lettuce, the other one said it would be the price of watermelon. split the difference. but what we have now is a vested interest in illegal drugs. [inaudible] narcotics officers, we have a huge bunch of prisons, increasingly private. the prison guards' unit is big, we have a therapy industry, and we have a committed investment into them being illegal. eventually it'll break down
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because we can't afford to make them illegal. what we've done is take a public health problem at best, drug consumption, and made it a police problem. that would be like saying we have too much heart disease, and instead of sending doctors, sending cops. this is a waste of money and time. we've proven that. we haven't gotten rid of drugs at all. almost every drug in constant dollars is cheaper now, more districted and higher quality than, say, it was in 1975. this was a fiasco. >> host: a tweet here from joe. charles bowden is right. at the heart of the matter is one man telling another man what substances he may use and fighting over it. how does the arizona immigration bill play into all this? you live in tucson. >> guest: well, look, i've been in arizona. the arizona immigration bill cannot be enforced. it would bankrupt the state. they don't have enough jails to do it, one. every cop, every police force in
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the state has said that, they've come out against it. two, it will make it impossible to investigate a lot of crimes. police now can move freely through neighborhoods that are full of illegal mexicans because the illegal mexicans know if somebody asks them about a murder, they're not going to be deported. that's off the table now. this law was passed for domestic political reasons. it was passed so the governor can look tough. the legislator is a lunatic. i covered it. john mccain has endorsed it because he's in a relatively tight republican primary, but it will not influence illegal immigration any more than the wall will along the border. people have to understand that right now on the border where i live it's about $3,000 to hire a smuggler to get you across, say, get you to chicago. if you get to chicago, you will make a real wage and pay that
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off in a couple months. people in hong kong in places are paying 30 grand to be put in shipping containers. that's the market value of being here. but this isn't going to stop. all the wall's done, all the 20,000 agents, knew, you know, border patrol's done, all the laws have done is they've created a bonus for people -- [inaudible] a brazilian is probably paying $10,000 in order to make it to san antonio or dallas. you can't deal with a human tidal wave in a world that seems to be sinking with these laws. they're going to come here. if you really don't want them to come here, then you'd get a national id so they couldn't possibly live here. but i haven't seen any republicans or democrats step up to the plate on that one.
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the other thing is this is not a homeland security issue unless you're an economist. these people are coming here to work whether you like them or not. they're not coming here to blow up your house, they're coming here to remodel it. they're just working poor people. go out and meet 'em. >> host: las vegas, good afternoon. >> caller: hi, how do you do? sir, what about all the costs for these illegals? i heard, like, 13,000 americans are killed each year through illegal immigration, through drunk driving and also being killed, but also what about the welfare costs and the way they're screwing up the hospitals? the majority of them are on welfare, the american taxpayer has to pay for their children to be born. it seems to me like you're ignoring a tremendous amount of negative stuff that these people bring. >> host: we got the point. go ahead. >> guest: okay, look, it's a fair point, but it's balanced. i know hospitals in southern ads are going to the wall taking care of illegals because under
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the hippocratic oath you show up there not with a tooth ache but seriously ill, they have to treat you. and it's the also true that there are other social costs. but these people are not on welfare. you see people begging saying i'll work for -- you find me an illegal mexican there. he's at the supermarket door trying to sell you a tamale or mow your lawn. now, the other is that crime statistics in my experience are bogus. when they say all these illegals have committed crimes, a lot of the crimes they're talking about if you unpackage the number, their crime is they're here illegally, you know? i'm not saying they're saints, but that's not the major consequence. if you really were concerned about this migration, you'd say they're driving down american wages. but you have people that don't have full human rights and will
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work for less. >> host: this is booktv's live coverage coverage from the los angeles times festival of books. here's the cover, "murder city" it is called. baltimore, you're on. >> caller: hi, mr. bowden. my name isny chel, and i -- michelle, and i just wanted to tell you about ten years ago i was at a friend's house, and he showed me a copy of one of your books. it completely changed the way that i think about the u.s./mexico border. it caused me to go to law school. i became a federal, assistant federal public defender working in new mexico and trying to do the best that i could to help these people living in juarez -- [inaudible] coming over, getting caught up in the immigration laws. and i just want to thank you for writing about what you write about and saying the things that you say because people need to hear it. >> guest: well, good. thank you, and i'm glad you went to law school.
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in this case i will approve a lawyer. look, the book "juarez, the laboratory of our future," was an effort i made with 13 juarez photographers to try and paint a portrait of what these policies were really creating. i thought the city was violet then. -- violent then. this book is the actual report. it's created a culture of death in the city. >> host: what's this picture on the front? >> guest: that's a dead guy with a bunch of cops around him at night. >> host: legitimate picture? >> guest: that's a real picture. julio who spent his whole life in juarez. some days there's 15, 20 people executed in juarez. these people are the full spectrum. january 31st just an example, 15 high school kids in a working class mom, you know, were at a private party because their parents were afraid to let them celebrate a soccer victory in a public place.
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armed guys came and killed all of them, boys and girls. just slaughtered them. there were photographs in the street with just big puddles of just blood. now, if you want to say these 15 wind were going to high school -- were going to high school, some of them entered high school, if you want to say they're narcos, go ahead, but i don't think the president knows what he's talking about. the mother of two of the dead kids showed up unbeknownst to the president of mexico when he came into town a couple weeks later to say he was going to fix the city, and she stood up, very poor woman. she said, mr. president, you're not welcome here. i don't want you here. if your son were killed, you'd turn over every rock in this country. then she turned her back to him and stood there which is like turning your back to god in mexico. it rivetted the whole country. she said out loud what everyone was thinking. they know better than to think it's just bad people getting killed because they know the
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dead. >> host: our next call comes from el paso right on the border. go ahead, el paso. >> guest: hi, dr. bowden. i was wondering what your overall opinion would be in the effect of, of these -- i'm from el el paso -- of these immigration new policies that you see in arizona. do you see those transcending into the effect of texas? that was my first question. and my second question is, also, how do you feel about the elite that's moving over here into texas, how do you feel that's going to overall affect the economy here in texas for the lower class and middle class? >> guest: okay. two questions, see if i can remember them. the immigration law in arizona is a normal reaction to a migration. we call it zen phobia. there'll be more such walls. they will enflame the latin community in the united states most of which is legal. they will not control illegal
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immigration. they are playing to the grandstand. what they are is what you use to grow tomatoeses. now we'll move on to the migration of the mexican rich. 30-60,000 affluent mexicans have fled juarez for el paso across the river. they bought nice houses, kept the housing prices up. they're investing. i don't see where in the long run it hurts the people in the el paso. what it does do is hurt the people in juarez. this is a drain of their elite, their educated, their affluent. the people that have stayed in juarez have stayed there because they can't fake the documents, and they don't have the money to be allowed into the u.s. so they're essentially left behind to be cannon fodder. >> host: you've looked at juarez, but what about knew way slow laredo? >> guest: the whole border is --
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>> host: a war zone? >> guest: it's violent now. tijuana, juarez is more violent. but the whole country is increasingly becoming violent. i mean, you know, chihuahua, durango, sonora, nuevo leon where monterey is, i could go on and on. >> host: and it's all about drugs? >> guest: no, it's not all about drugs. drugs were the -- i hate to use tipping point, but they're what ripped the lid off. a lot of it is just violence and poverty. that guy who was killed in juarez, for example, a month or so ago because he was stealing a door off an abandoned house in a poor neighborhood. and somebody shot him so he couldn't steal the door. now, that isn't a drug crime. two tamale vendors were executed at 9:30 in the morning a block
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from the u.s. consulate because they were supposed to meet a $10 payment a week of extortion to have their cart there, and they couldn't meet it. you know? these crimes have far exceeded anything you could explain by drugs. i mean, drugs are a business. murder is expensionive. >> host: our guest has been charles bowden. his most recent book, "murder city." very quickly, what's your next book? >> guest: okay, i'll tell you what i'm going to do next. i'm going to the mississippi delta, i'm going to write about soil and people, and i'm going to write about the richest land, why does the richest land on earth remain after two centuries the poorest region in the united states? and i'm going to drink the water, have cold beer and eat a lot of catfish. [laughter] >> host: charles bowden, thank you for being on booktv with us. >> guest: thank you for having me. >> host: about an hour and a
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half left in our live coverage at the l.a. times book fair here at ucla. coming up next is an author panel on the middle east, facing the realities. reza aslan, ilan berman and roxana saberi who after this panel will be on to@@ áa%%i@ questions from elsewhere. before we start, there are a couple of announcements that i'm supposed to make, cell phones off, please.
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there will be signings following the session, the signing for this panel is located in the north signing area that'll be marked haines 39. .. followed by violence in the
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streets. the roots of the agreement reformist movement turned into something larger and political. all of this is superimposed upon the ongoing debate about iran's nuclear program and whether there are a temps to weapon negative the program, and if so, what the rest of the world can and should do about it. the los angeles times we are proud of our coverage there. our correspondent has spent an awful lot of time in tehran. he did a tremendous work last year and was recommended by the pulitzer prize committee is a fine reporting. one of the secrets of the success is he was able to kind of get beyond the black and white narrative that often defines, can often define it on cable tv or in the rhetoric of politicians and sort of explore the various shades of gray, just brought richness to the coverage and that is the panelists today are going to be able to do because they are authors, and so
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they are all going to able to give i think the different perspective but deeper perspective on what is going on roxanne is not a very enviable she was able to get a taste of the i rhenium hardliners from inside prison. i think 100 days he spent in jail. kind of living in iran since 2003 working as a freelance journalist, writing a book and maybe we will ask about borneman to iran. part of the exile community and iranian american writer. the faculty and reverse side contributing editor for the daily beast and the author to books, i would say religious scholarship one called no god
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good god and how to win a cosmic war introducing the debate in the discussion broader goals asian in the war of terror and so i will start with you and just the error of the states is filled with the inevitability about a confrontation between iran and the united states and in your opinion is that -- are to be on the road that leads -- is there any prospect of accommodation, way out? >> i think it depends with the goal is. if you were asking are we ineffably moving toward some kind of military confrontation with iran, the answer to that is a definitive note because there is no military option when it comes to iran. there is no military option for the united states or for israel. there is a lot of reasons for this we can get into in the answer in question period but i think that we should bear in mind that robert gates has unequivocally taken the military option off the table and with
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regard to this issue whether israel is going to act unilaterally there is no such thing as a unilateral action on the part of israel when it comes to iran for a couple of reasons the most of important which is israel has to go across the iraqi air space in order to attack iran and guess who controls the iraqi airspace. and, you know, the issue i think is one of if you're talking about sort of inevitability is coming you know, is it inevitable that iran is going to what the negative its nuclear program. nobody knows. let's be clear on this right now. the intelligence estimates change on a yearly basis and 05, 06. the intelligence community in the united states was almost unanimous in its decision that they had abandoned their weapons programs and 08 and 09 and the opinion has changed. and as far as israeli
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intelligence goes, israeli intelligence has been saying iran is 12 to 18 months of a nuclear weapon for ten years now. so we don't know. that is just the facts. but we do know, however, and what is becoming increasingly clear is that if iran actually wants to build a nuclear weapon, we don't know if they do but if they want to build a nuclear weapon in seems like there is little anyone can do to put a stop to it. and so that means to deal with iran's nuclear ambitions we have to answer to questions. one of them is why what iran want a nuclear weapon and the answer to that i think is pretty obvious. it is meant to be as a security guarantee. it is a deterrent like every country in the world who wants a nuclear weapon there is nothing extraordinary, nothing unusual about iran whatsoever or about the way that it would use a nuclear weapon. if it were to have one.
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it is after all a country that is surrounded by american troops. i mean it literally surrounded by american troops. and it is a country that despite the security threat that israel faces it is a country that as we sit here today it has an untold number of israeli nuclear weapons pointed at it right now. so it doesn't take a genius to figure out why iran would want a nuclear weapon has i sometimes flippantly say iran have learned a pretty valuable lesson from its axis of eisel members. one of them didn't have nuclear weapons it was destroyed and occupied. the other one does have nuclear weapons we are still pouring tens of billions of dollars into north korea just to get them to talk to us about their weapons so the first issue is how we get them to not want one and the second issue is i think if we are going to continue to think of iran's nuclear program as a
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iranian problem then we will never solve it because it is not an on iranian problem it is a regional problem but more importantly an antiproliferation problem and until we can figure out a way to construct a more solid basis for an antiproliferation regime, something much more solid and the nuclear non-proliferation treaty which is the primary documents we have right now we are going to have countries like iran popping up every few years. i think barack obama is right we are fast approaching a world in which either everyone will have nuclear weapons or no one will of nuclear weapons and until we figure out which of the two things we are willing to live with, the problem of iran will be a problem that we are going to face over and over again throughout the region. >> let me amplify a little bit because he hit upon some very important points with regard to
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proliferation and the regional perspective. let me say this, i am a talking head in washington. in lieu of a real job i sit around and dwell id is a walled as i wouldn't necessarily say that what you're going to hear from me is representative of the country as a whole but i do spend a lot of time talking to policy makers in congress so i can at least tell you with a little bit of sincerity with your thinking, and with your thinking is that there are essentially three choices when it comes to iran. there is accommodation. the idea that iran is building a nuclear program and there isn't much we can do about it therefore we don't do anything at all. there is the central point which is containment, which is a fancy way of saying doing nothing and this is essentially takes the paradigm of the fight against the soviet union and says the soviets had nukes and we had the knicks and we didn't blow each other and so everything is fine. biden, that is a job the congress likes to that because when they think we did the iranians just get nukes then we
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will have a stable deterrence and everything will be fine and we don't have to come in on weekends or login great hours and they really like this idea. the problem of course with the containment paradigm is iran is not the soviet union. iran possesses most immediately and ideological component and religious component that the u.s.s.r. never did. and so, and also this pesky details like the fact we don't have steady communications with the iranians. we don't have a good idea of their intentions are red lines. these are prerequisites to a stable deterrent relationship with the soviets. with the soviets, we theoretically have the idea that we can figure out more or less what they could do under any circumstance in any given time and that is what made mad work. we don't have all of those components, all of those ingredients necessary for stable continent and deterrence. so that option i think is fairly problematic. and then on the right side of the spectrum is this idea of
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confrontation. the idea that a nuclear iran whether it is a nation of nuclear programs, and you hear a lot about the japanese model, the model of nuclear development, stopping just shy of having an authentic capabilities they can spread across the threshold of the feel threatened. this is a little bit academic i think because what you are talking of is a country building an infrastructure that supports a nuclear weapons program and the fundamental choice that we have to make and let's be clear i think he was right we haven't made it yet. i think the policy community in washington is very divided. it is whether or not we can live with this regime acquiring this capability in this way at this time. the obama administration spent the last 15 months testing the position and the proposition has to be is it possible for us to reach some kind of negotiation accommodation with the iranian is an accommodation that respects the right to nuclear energy but at the same time constrains the development and makes it more transparent. and what we've discovered over
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the last 15 months or so is that it media but the ingredients are not there for us to build that type of paradigm, at least not right now. in fact, what you have been noticing as we read the press is the regime has desperately used the last year and a little bit more than a quarter of the strategic balls that we get inserted and i like to use that word because you understand when diplomacy comes up, threats go down, the possibility of military action was down, the possibility of sanctions was down, to be cut. the regime has used that as an of opportunity to go ahead with the program including the disclosure of sites like the pilot plant which is not very useful for energy generation of really useful fuel to build a nuclear weapon including disclosure of plans to build the trigger for the nuclear weapon which you don't need in the civilian nuclear program. a lot of circumstantial but evidence that makes the international community and policy makers in washington that i talk to very nervous. that this isn't just a peaceful
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program that they have to do something about it. as reza said, there's a great deal of power of the end of problematic elements relating to a military option as well as relating to economic warfare and sanctions. and i think these are all -- we are right in the middle of a very heated policy discussion in washington about what to do about it. for those of you that haven't paid attention there is a great deal of congressional action coming down the pipes in the next several weeks on precisely this, whether or not energy sanctions should be levied against iran and what are the next steps now that the diplomacy has broken down. for my money i think it is all going to boil down to one simple question. it is whether or not we think it is possible using all of these different inducements to modify the behavior of the current rulers in iran enough to be little or if you need something more fundamental. if the problem is not the nuclear program that the regime
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that will yields it then we have a real problem. secure the only one here that has lived in iran for extended periods of time. when you hear that kind of talk of washington does it strike you as realistic? >> i think the problem is that people in the international community just don't know what to do with iran, and it seems like the majority view in the west right now is focused on sanctions on at least revolutionary guard entities as blood best of the last few remaining alternatives according to the supporters in the times of sanctions. and the supporters say maybe this could impact revolutionary cards to a certain extent without hurting the ordinary people as much as other steps what. i think it is difficult to predict what sanctions would do in iran and how the regime would
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react and people would react if they would rally around the flag or if they would become so dissatisfied and blaming their own regime and rise up and put pressure on them it is very difficult to predict. i think so no matter what is pursued, the door to dialoguã,2% fuel the arguments that iran is
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under national security threat in the name of protecting national security can try to silence their critics in opposition in the country which is what i have seen and i think what a lot of people have seen over the previous few years. and at the same time to close the door to dialogue it just really shocked -- it reduces the possibility of peaceful solutions to detention. >> one of the things that is struck starting and correct me if i'm wrong but there is a much broader than just much for a confrontation and one that uses the military option. you argue for broad economic tools essential the arguments of power has to be involved in as well. when you read roxana's book is what is striking is this sufficient level of part of the iranian hard-liners and comes to the soft power is very, very high. you're a phillies with the aspen institute seems to have set alarm bells so soft power could be used as a tool and would still encounter the kind of --
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the had the same defensive attitude toward community organizers that some community organizers have. [laughter] >> and, you know, hard-liners like to talk about soft revolution or velvet revolution as something being masterminded on particularly the u.s. government and they say the argument they have is the u.s. government is trying to inject ideas through using a iranian eletes like academics and others in society who would then use civil society and the media to spread these ideas about i suppose dr. c. and human rights to the masses to send a non-violent revolution. if you define a velvet revolution like this i don't know if there is actually such a thing. if there is a possibility of ideas spreading that are
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countered with interest of the regime, ideals about democracy and human rights if they do spread more in the population lives in them spreading more in the population of iran they can be perhaps threatening to the people in government because they don't want more democracy because the would mean they would have to share power but this is not exactly something that they masterminded in the u.s. government. i think the ordinary iranian people want it to a large extent. in my case, is the argument about soft power on my first day of interrogation when i was taken to an unmarked building somewhere in a ron one of the questions i was asked was about a solution i just received from the aspen institute, middle east leadership fellowship and i hadn't even gone on it yet. it was supposed to start the next month and was aimed at community service and is it you know what community service is code for and the netflix software evolution and i said actually we are supposed to set up programs that are in communities for kids and they
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said no the aspen institute is getting money from the government and it's one of the arms of the weapons and soft war and my main interrogator who i call john and the intelligence interrogators would never give me their real names, he said he was reading the newspaper behind me one day because i always had to sit facing the wall in this little desk in the interrogation room and he was reading about president obama just inaugurated 11 days before my capture and arrest and he said the democrats talk about engagement with iran but actually the democrats are more dangerous than the republicans because the open the call for the regime change in iran, the democrats pretend they want better relations but they are actually aiming for the same
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thing. mainly soft revolution. so i don't know to what extent they actually believe the u.s. government is masterminding this but i think they are afraid of ideas spreading that could threaten their own power. >> for more optimistic about ideas in iran, aren't you? >> i think these ideas are not just spreading. they are pervasive. we keep talking about how to bring democracy to iran. iran has already got its democracy. it is just being completely free press by a shadow government. so everything that iran needs absolutely everything that iran needs for rapid political and social transformation already exists in iran except for this one thing which is the economy is on the verge of total collapse. 40% of the population living under the poverty line, 30% official unemployment rate when
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it and most iranians will agree with this said that number is much, much higher. 26% annual inflation rate talking about a country that sits on the second largest supply of oil and natural gas on the planet and yet it has to import 40% of its gasoline. and a ridiculous loss of profit and then subsidize the gasoline for pennies per liter. there is no functioning middle class left in here on any longer by which we mean the sort of leisure class that brought down meshaal mehdi in 1999 and the class that launched the naturalist revolution of 93 and the class that forced the mall markey to write a constitution and allow for a parliament in 1905. it is always been the middle class in iran that has pushed for if these revolutions, the brandt transformations.
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the middle class in iran is barely functioning and just for those of you this is los angeles, so we all know this but for those of you that don't we are not talking about burma, this isn't a hermit kingdom this is a country and in which the literacy rate for would women alone, just women is 90%. that matches the literacy rate for the women in the united states. it is incredibly sophisticated culture. very technologically savvy, socially conscious, politically the verdict and globalized. and i don't want to speak for iian your but when we talk about soft power we are not saying -- we are not talking about these sort of little things an institution building. we are talking about a grand dramatic gestures of softcover that fundamentally change the socioeconomic status in iran one
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of which and i would like to hear your thoughts on this is the duty of allowing iran to finally join as it is desperate to do which forces upon iran instead of economic and actually socially liberalizing principles that would provide precisely that little crack in the door the 70% of the population needs in order to kick the door down completely. >> let me start by offering what the u.s. policy communities view and then we will talk about the wto. i think the question of soft power is one of the least understood with regard to what the united states can do and what the united states has done. the regime talks about western forces in trying to promote rights and democracy which shouldn't sound all that weird to you guys because we happen to
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like human rights and democracy that they don't and i see it as a challenge of their power because of the chart to the couple were isn't built on connection with an organic connection between the people and the regime. it is a clerical regime by archaeological fiat and the talk about the components of democracy. it does, it has the form of democracy but it doesn't have the substance so when we talk about soft power the tuck of promoting the principles we are talking of something more fundamental. filling in this form with a substance that will median of remove but certainly alter the regime as it currently stands it is very unrepresentative so the question becomes what can we do and what have we done and the answer is not much. when i was writing my book i had a normal access to a lot of the budgetary archives and by the way for all of you that our students of the u.s. foreign
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policy, the true direct way to figure out what the u.s. is doing in the foreign policy what it plans to do is look at the federal budget and that is to look at the federal budget as look there's a thousand pages to have to wait for. it is to look specific programmatic priorities, so we think through the middle east for in budget you will find the bush administration for all its talk of democracy in the iran spent $215 million total in its second term. iran is a country of 70 million people so i am not a mathematician that that is not a lot of money at all and if you get actual funds that were not allocated but were dispersed you're looking at much smaller, a little bit over 38.5 million which means roughly a quarter per iranians over the bush second term which is nothing to be the point is you can have an intellectual argument and what we should support in iran but you can certainly make an ironclad if you're going to do it you need more funds so the question is how much do we
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really care of? the second question is what are we going to do after we found this mandate and the answer here is and roxana and i were talking about this over lunch there has been a lot of talk about how the bush administration democracy outreach to iran was counterproductive because it was just enough money to cause the groups were desperate that the would accept american funds to crawl out from under the rocks they were living under and then they would sort of routinely get snatched up by the regime say you'd have a lot of low back to the u.s. democracy promotion efforts. i would make the argument that the most efficient, the most first tile and the most effective u.s. soft power is one that leverage is what is happening within iran already and just amplify. to give you an example back in 2003 iran is by the way remarkable state. iran is much more dynamic internally with regard to now in
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the soviet union or the block was at the end of the cold war. uzi protests every month you just don't hear of it here but you see it in the arabic-language press. in 2003 it was one of those periodic compulsions. it happened to be far more intense than it had previously occurred. protests start of the university of tiran and they spread to other places and people watching including myself, people i worked with what this is really something or it could turn into something and what in the up happening was the opposite over the period of three or four days of protests peered out and died so when i was riding my last book i did a little bit of investigative journalism to find out what happened and it seemed very abrupt. the answer was the opposition elements were using come at that time it was open in beverly hills, expatriate by iranian broadcaster used to coordinate activities within iraq.
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and the regime understood this. they knew this. they received it into a wrong because it is a satellite based -- broadcasting based on satellite and the regime couldn't stop it so they turned to the castro regime in cuba and there is a satellite station in cuba that promptly blocked the satellites so the satellite would see recently decapitated the move. so this left me with this idea that perhaps the most effective things we could do would be to provide enough oxygen for the iranians to do what they want to do themselves to communicate with each other, to leverage technology they currently don't have. this is by the way the regime of course think it is invasive but this is just a natural evolution of the protest that you see now in iran. we have to think about how to make that more effective. >> i agree with what you are seeing rather than democracy is ideas about democracy are already pervasive in society and
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they are spreading even more in my opinion as we know many of the iranian people are young under the age of 30 daisy about two-thirds are under the age of 30 so they were not alive the time of the revolution or they don't remember it. more and the year more and more connected through the world of technology, travel, they have relatives overseas, they've been exposed to the ideas about the universal human rights. and more and more women have been been to school about 65% of the iranian universities are now women to read a lot of them have come from the small town to the bigger cities like to iran and they get exposed to new ideas as well and have greater demand through equality, human rights and dr. c. and it is true the struggle for democracy has been taking place for more than 100 years. it is one of the main political struggles in the country between democracy and autocracy weather in the form of the monarchy or a religious government.
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and also when you talk about steps about promoting democracy or human rights in iran and i don't know if this is also part of the soft power, perhaps it is, i agree there are certain things people on the outside, governments and ordinary individuals aag@ @ right now and maybe they
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are worried that if they push for support on the nuclear issue from some countries that those -- sorry, if they push for support on human rights issues that those countries will support america on the nuclear issue as well. ..
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america has abu creep and guantánamo. and on another occasion i found out ater after he came to iran to rescue me, he was called into the revolutionary court monday by one of the intelligence agents and they said, why the intelligence agents at wife you've been wife you've been telling the media all the time that your daughters innocent. do you know she's made a confession?
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because i was pressured to make a false confession. my father said we have to seem to what conditions did she make this confession. he was implying us under a lot of pressure, under a lot of duress. in the agent said, well, we talked to her in a very friendly environment. [laughter] of course, for those who don't know i was taken from my apartment and captain solitary confinement without an attorney. i was threatened that i could say a further 20 years or get the death penalty. but i guess that's a friendly environment. we talked to in a friendly environment. this isn't america. we don't want to report here. i made this example that people know that when america doesn't reflect those principles, that it has come to be known for it in different parts of the world, then certain government and people in those governments can take advantage of that.
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and instead of addressing the shortcomings, they can make an excuse for that. and finally, i think there's a lot of ordinary people can do to promote human rights and democracy in iran. there are so many people horchow and iran. prisoners of conscience were simply there because they have peacefully exercised asic human rights such as freedom of exception, freedom of religion is no dispute over my cellmates at least two of them are still there right now. it makes a big difference for the prisoners who were there when they know ordinary people on the outside are showing support was a period in the making of foremost demonstration there's going to be quite coming eccentricities on june 12, which is the one-year anniversary of the election and i'm sure there will be one in los angeles starting positions on facebook and writing letters to the iranian officials at the u.n. or asking your media to report more on the issue.
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and it makes a lot harder for the hardliners in iran to say that these are organized by government, when they say ordinary people in different countries taking these kinds of steps. >> washington foreign-policy mist 79 revolution, recently seems like they been getting china right now for the last decade or so. what are the odds of getting this one right? [laughter] >> as i was like to say, you know, i'm not really card-carrying color of the foreign policy establishment. but let me say this. very slant and very slim because they're searching conventional wisdom is that we assume that simply don't apply. so you know, there is the conventional and i'm going to stomach and harsh on the obama
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administration. i don't intend to be because i think it was a worthy pursuit. i would maybe not if drafted up for 15 months. but engaging with iran i think the rationale behind testing the proposition . but that proposition is born out of this particular hubris that we have. america is so big, so important that we have to do is say that we're going to set the table and by the time we get there this going to be steak, coffee and the iranians on the other side. and what we've discovered over the last 15 months as i'm doing just fine, thank you very much. regime is thriving under these conditions because the machine uses the external threat that it faces from the coalition. the internal threat that faces from soft revolution, which tries desperately to pay a thing for an orchestrated to consolidate power, to be more repressive, even more represented here it so one of our failures has been that we present them that the negotiations with iran will go the way they did with the soviets or the way they did with the chinese.
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iran is, you know, i don't know how many times i say this a lot. iran is not the soviet union. it's a fundamentally different creature. and this sort of gets to the second question. it's not a subtle question, but it's on the paralyzed the washington -- what i'm not a spokesperson for about 15 years. and the question is, whether or not, with sufficient modification this regime would be okay. former cia your would use the phrase close enough for government work. so, he would know, right? what he is talking about is it's not perfect but it's close enough for government work. as with this machine gave up its nuclear ambitions and support for terrorism, which by the way, the u.s. hasn't flipped on since 1985 when the state department issued patterns of global terrorism, iran is ranked every year is the most active state
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sponsor terrorism companies in organs like revolutionary document supporting groups like hezbollah and hamas, more likely otiose in iraq, et cetera. thank you. because that debate has been so ingrained in washington, the question of whether or not it this regime just gives up all these different things, would it be okay? get rid of it that or do we need to seek a more fundamental transition? this is behavior modification versus regime change. can we live this regime or do we need a different one? at what's happening in washington is what usually happens in washington we have to really heady ideas to come full force at each other. the answer is that they not in that incident happening for a decade and a half. and that debate is still going on. the obama administration when it came and addressed this very obliquely by saying, we're going to a fundamentally different approach to what the bush administration was doing through the presumption was the bush
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administration really wanted to promote the latter, to promote regime change and therefore behavior modification. we're going to talk with these guys and try to change their behavior. but what's happened is that camino, and current events, history sometimes interferes. so what you have a summer is now almost 11 months old was a fundamental groundswell of discontent in iraq and to really put the obama administration -- [inaudible] as it puts the obama administration on the wrong side of that revolutionary divide. and how washington reconciled itself to that remains to be seen. it's quite clear that that decision hasn't been made yet. and so, fair -- what we decide, whether we decide that we're going to come in a comic or the green movement, continue to regard the green movement and talk with the powers or whether we're going to talk to the person tehran and the green movement and therefore appear in
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authentic to both appeared over going to check the green movement to the exclusion of the regime in tehran. that's going to change everything for us is going to teleport in the world, including the iranians, what america would like iran to the quake. it doesn't mean it's going to look that way, but it means we still have to make a decision. >> do you think the green movement is still strong and you think the exile community really understands what's going on inside their now given policy of information that's going on >> i don't think the community has a clue what's going on in iran. i think the exile community and i speak as one of them is more concerned about what they want for iran than what's best for iran. and it's a real shame upon the iranian americans that they can't get past for the most part their ideological divisions into sort of think about okay, well i've got aunts and uncles and cousins and, you know, family who were actually living in iran, who need, you know,
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health, who need assistance right now. so no, i'm not very optimistic about the role that the exile community can play. the flipside of this -- no, i think the green movement is absolutely strong. if a federally conference here, literally conference here, so let me just paraphrase the great mark twain and say that reports of the demise of the green movement have been greatly exaggerated. you know, first of all which remind everybody that we keep talking about the revolution of 1979. the revolution started in 1977 years it took a long time to get rid of the shock and is going to take a long time to promote fundamental political change in this regime. but the truth is that the green movement has been more successful than i think anyone could have possibly imagined and doing what they were fundamentally united in doing, which was to delegitimize the regime here it the islamic
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republic's bases its legitimacy to fundamental fact years. the first team that sees itself as the locus of islamic morality. it's sort of the center of religious morality in the state. that has been completely and utterly shattered, not just by the rapid takeover of the revolutionary guard. iran is becoming a military dictatorship. it is slowly transforming from the theocratic country to a military country. and i think that's something we need to be more cognizant of. and secondly also in the way they've responded not just to these unarmed civilians on the streets, but to some of the most respect good religious authorities in iran, brutally going after them come beating them on the streets, resting their children. the widespread reports that every iranian had access to
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about the torture and the of prisoners in iran's prisons. all that has come even amongst the so-called pious classes come assorted majority of iranians who are fairly apolitical and not very socially conscious, but who nevertheless see the state as the bearer of islamic values, it's completely shattered that sense of legitimacy. the second thing the government uses to legitimize its regime is popular sovereignty. made the mistake, despite the autocratic tendencies of this regime, it is geared shiftless of its own people. and that is absolutely right because we just sort of paid attention this last time, but, you know, every 18 months or so there's a massive uprising somewhere in iran and despite the brutality of the response, which you see immediately afterwards is the subtle changes in the way that the regime deals with whatever the situation was that caused the uprising to begin with. so this is a government that
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really relies on this at the popular vote, popular sovereignty for its legitimacy. i don't need to sell you how fundamentally that has been completely shattered here it so if the goal of the green movement and i believe it was, was to teach legitimize the regime in the eyes of the majority of iranians who didn't even join the green movement, then they succeeded beyond their wildest dreams. >> we have two minutes button would like to open it to questions if you're willing. no speeches, please. i have an hourglass after my phone and will cut them off. last night why don't we start from air. go ahead. >> it has been reported that admiral mullen, chairman of the joint chiefs of staff traveled to israel and worn down, if you attack iran, do not try to mousetrap us, the united states into this war.
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is this true and are you concerned that israel will try to mousetrap and what did he mean by mousetrap? [laughter] i think he is the example of the uss liberty -- >> yes, it was brought up a couple@@@ @0e
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when israel wants you dead, you just die. [laughter] they don't talk about it, they don't mention it. one day you're asleep in the next week you know, you're dead. and the fact the we have seen this ratcheting up of rhetoric about an impending attack against iran is probably the best proof that there is that there is a military attack
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coming. as far as the consequences, everybody knows the consequences. iran cannot israel in any conventional sense. iran is a third world country. and finally as a joke. it's weapon system belongs in the 20th century. but it has to proxy armies in the region, hezbollah and hamas, both of whom who have proven that they can do significant damage to israel and both of which would be let loose should there be an israeli attack. >> where to start. i think there's a lot here that requires commenting. i'm going to try to also keep it as simple as possible. first off, in order to understand what the israelis are driving up, you have to understand that iran represents to the israeli body policy. if you go to israel come you find a very divided electorate that disagrees on everything from health care to food subsidies to social services.
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iran, whether your labor or could he not is a continuity. iran is seen as an existential threat. you can argue about whether or not it should be. but you have to understand the israelis view islam as an existential threat and it's fueled by the rhetoric from some of the more i would use crazy, but the more drinks than like among iran's leaders to talk about wiping israel from the map and whether or not that's a question of interpretation or is translation, the israelis read it as the arena president wants to wipe israel off the mat. if you're an israeli politician, you are driven by what tip o'neill is to say, all politics is local. and the israelis see a country that whether empirically or not, you can reach out and harm israel intellectually. they understand that a state, a jewish state builds upon the extermination of 6 million by the third right simply as a problem with sitting by idly and
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not addressing this. i would remind you guys hear that israel is the only country in modern history to nuclear is not one, but two countries. i wouldn't be so quick to think it doesn't have a military option. this is a logistical issue if you look at what the israeli procurement patterns of the israeli military. they've been spending a lot of time by an additional long-range field cases for airplanes, bombs that can penetrate conventional organizations that can penetrate hard and untrue territories. the question of whether or not it's actually going to have been really hinges upon one ring and one thing alone, whether or not they think washington is serious. it is the reason the israelis have been talking for a decade about the fact that iran is so close to nuclear weapon and i agree this is really serve them poorly in terms of framing the iranian threat. what they've been trained to do for a long time is to try to
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recast iran, not as just a local or regional threat, but as a threat to global security. and i think there's a lot of very good reasons to agree with that definition. the question is whether or not were going to do something about it. for a long time, the united states government under president clinton or president bush, we talked about the fact that the israelis you guys need to hang back, we got it, it's taken care of. for going to build a coalition to contain and sanction. what's happened over the last 15 has cast serious doubt in the israeli mind as to whether or not we're serious. quite frankly they don't think we are. and as a result, what they do next is more of an open question than it would have been before because if they see as an existential thought in november would you take care of it for them or help manage it, then this is a wild card in the deck i think a lot of people have trouble putting odds on. >> thank you for taking a
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question. first of all, i'd like to ask about the attack on iran for israel. let's look at what the public committee has recently done with our congress, dr. stephen stokowski talked about the neocons invade iraq for israel. his article titled israeli lobby unworn iran. aipac is pushing for this work. i don't know if you've seen ron paul is seen on the florida house. he said it's basically the building blocks of war with iran. >> sir, question. >> what are your views about aipac? if they're pushing us into another war with iran. >> i guess that's to me. i often got the correct characterization. in fact, if you look at what apex doing and they are a great very influential and concerned about the issue. their major lobbying effort with a mac and turned last two and
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half years is arab son. the idea here is to sanction the 40% of refined petroleum. iran can't refined enough for the gasoline internally so it does from abroad from a very small number of the players reliance in india et cetera et cetera. the idea is to draft legislation in congress that would allow the u.s. government to sanction these entities to make it harder for iran to buy gasoline from abroad as a way of putting pressure on the regime to bring them to the table to avoid military conflict. the goal here isn't to create a military conflict. if there was a good time last roundabout ways of doing it. what they're looking for is trying to find the magic bullet that will really capture the attention of the rulers in iran. and focus their attention and really by the way this is not an aipac question. this is a u.s. or to form policy of a question. what is that mix of carrots and sticks that can convince the
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iranian regime that in order for them to stay in business they have to get out of the nuclear business. that is a question that aipac is asking. they're certainly not the only one. there's a lot of institutes and lobby groups both left and right in front of it are asking the same question. aipac to folks who like to talk about a conspiracy is certainly the most low-hanging fruit because ever influential and they've been a lot of work in congress. but she's got to understand that making a rant issue a neocon issue greatly distort what iran is seen as in washington at 12. stack i just want to say, i also met a conspiracy theorist when it comes to aipac. yes of course they're enormously successful and yes they do threaten congressmen and senators with towing their party line or they'll be destroyed and they've done that many times. but that's how it works. that's how washington works and good for aipac for a figure not have to get on top of this.
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so it's not coming in no come a conspiracy here. and it certainly absolutely 100% not the case that aipac forced america into the wherewith they rack because the truth is that aipac over the last decade has also said they are not the problem, iran is the problem in a war in iraq would only power iran. guess what, they were. but let's get something absolutely straight here. international law states unequivocally that if you cut off the country's supply to natural resources, it is an act of war. aipac necessary relief. so they have been pushing to get the united states to essentially dry up iran's access to this 40% that i was telling you about. but iran has said unequivocally that any attempt to do so will be seen as an act of war. they will immediately close the moves, which by the way we will
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consider an active work as it cuts off our oil supply. so this is indirectly a push towards a military response. nobody ever spoken to us in a real association with aipac actually believes you can touch iran but a long talk them out of their nuclear program. subtle little bit more cynical about their role here with regard to iran. >> to practice a very short question, roxana, overturn a 50 days ago three young americans are in the middle east accidentally crossed over the kurdish border. they been halted a prison ever since. very little contact, via the media exposure, very provide it eager. what is your view? >> it's awful that the hikers have been held there for so long. they haven't been able to see a lawyer once. they've been able to call home only once. they went solitary confinement for a long time.
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now the two boys, shane and josh are together and there is in solitary confinement, but apparently she gets to see the boys for a few minutes a day. but the news last week cut the families have reported because the assistant ambassador finally got to see the three again. at least two of them, that physical conditions are not good and then sarah is suffering from depression. i think they're being used as political pawns, which is unfortunate. it's not a legal case, but a political case and a human rights case. president ahmadinejad if they really thought these guys were sized power they be suggesting this. but as ron likes to call everybody, almost everybody. and another thing, if i try to explain what might be going through these hikers find is
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probably they're feeling a lot of uncertainty. i'm sure they wished they could see their families. i was lucky because my father had an iranian passport included my mother, so they could come to iran and see me after they found out where it was. for a long time they didn't know. i could see them once a week. and so, they were my outlet to the outside. but when you're in there, cut off from the world, you can't see a lawyer, can't type your family, you feel helpless. in their captors know this i'm sure. [inaudible] >> yeah, and perhaps i sit imprisoned drug for today's meister would not have been covered so much because how often can you have a headline. everyday is kind of tough. but their families they think are doing as much as they can to bring attention to their case and if you can help anyway, their website is free of the hikers.board and the phillies is sometimes the hikers can get letters that are sent in this
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really helps the bless them. i also think the families have occurred a lot of cost because they have to take care of the expenses and travel to new york to do interviews about their kids. sometimes they hold vigils, so if you join for the hikers face the page as well, you can be up to date with that. >> by question is given you said the $38 million we recently spent on iran was not very affect the and given the idea that a spending money they are coming in outcome would give iran a reason to say we need nuclear weapons because america is intervening. why should we be spending any money at all over in iran? >> it's an interesting question and i have to refer back to my -- i'm recovering lawyers like to refer back to my legal training. the questions that conditions be necessary or sufficient, just because we spent a lot of, a little poorly allocated funds toward iran and was ineffective and counterproductive doesn't
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mean that all funds spent in a more robust fashion any more targeted fashion but -- as early piso. it's clear that the track record for democracy within iran so far has been abysmal. it's been abysmal i think because it tried to do a couple things. it tried to focus on groups that were very publicly known and also as a result subject to dismemberment. [inaudible] >> why do we just leave them alone? >> okay, it's a very legitimate question. i think and i don't know if i'm an outlier here. i've no idea. i'm an east coast i don't know anything. but it seems to me what i am is i'm a product of soviet repression. my parents were refused during the cold war and they came out. and i couldn't let go by their experience. their experience was when the
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west that human rights and democracy, universal values, the dissidents within the soviet union received an enormous shot in the arm. their status was internationalized. the soviet union set up and take notice and we begin to leverage things like for example most fak,],
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do want there to be an outcry about human-rights violations in iran. for them some of the demonstrators they were yelling [inaudible] obama either of you are with them were with us because they felt he was quiet on the issue of human rights violation but supporting democracy in iran doesn't mean that like you should support specific groups or main groups that you will support or especially groups inside iran because that allows them to claim that ordinary activist from a journalist, human-rights campaigners are
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mercenaries of the u.s.. >> i imagine this passionate discussion about the middle east. unfortunately our time is up so for those of you who've waited to ask questions. i want to thank the panelists very much. [applause] [inaudible] [inaudible conversations] amol o conversations [inaudible conversations] stabilize the iranian government. the israeli government tried to
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do with it terrorism against the united states back in the 50's and blame it. so the issue of terrorism goes much deeper in terms of the united states and israel rather than iran. [inaudible conversations] >> and you have been watching the last live panel of the day from the "los angeles times" festival of books. aslan, roxana saberi were in the panel. as we continue of next a life
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call-in program from los angeles on the campus of ucla you can see the crowd still there. roxana saberi will be here talking about her captivity in iran is the name of her book "between two worlds" my life in captivity in iran. she will be taking your calls as we get her seated here on the set right outside of the hall where that event was held. if you want to talk with roxana saberi 202-saberi for the east and central time zones. 202-585-3886 if you live in the mountain and pacific time zones and dickenson date wheat, twitter.com/booktv. but we got everything you've seen today will the air at 1 a.m. eastern time on booktv. the entire five and half hours of programming that we have covered today. we will free air as one entire package and that is of course at 10 p.m. here on the west coast so we will be right back with
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roxana saberi. >> we're the state university speaking with robert moore iii his book marion a white girl coming to grips with race in america. who said he would always marry a white girl and why did they say that? >> if it was an internal feeling on my part. i grew up in i think a fascinating time period in the 1960's. we are one of the few laughs african-american families to ride the wave of the millions of those who left urban america in that time period. at the same time many african-americans were coming off the land in rural america and going to the city so i felt very unique and caught in between and i think the two groups almost like two sides and
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there is a time period this cultural so i felt internally that i was destined to marry someone who was white rather than african-american. islamic what is the first part of your book is in sections. the first is called straddling the fence. how did you come to grips with your identity as an african-american male growing up in a predominantly white area in the philadelphia? >> it was tough. i don't think i did. i think i still wrestle with the impact of that time period. i grew up with people who were very good friends of mine and i still of great friends from that time period but have numerous stereotypes about african-americans and i internalize this stereotype i was fortunate both my parents worked which was unusual for that time period.
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i came from a dual income family and so i opted on the public school system and private school and i had my first contact with african-americans actually and my first a girlfriend was tenth grade, she was african-american. i had to leave the situation and go someplace else and work on my identity. >> what do you think it means to be -- what is an african-american identity? >> today or -- >> i guess either today or what he felt a growing up. >> well, you know, that is an interesting question, good question. i think we have stereotypes of each other and i subscribe to something called a group decision theory and i kind of look at groups of people in society and the overall place in society and i think we all the stereotypes about groups and we
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internalize the stereotypes. i would socialize as a person growing up in the suburbs of philadelphia. i'm not sure there is anyone identity that african-americans have and whites have. we do feel a sense of cultural difference whether it is real cultural difference or not is up for debate but we feel a sense of ann curry of group and one day we get over that in this country and have a sense of when -- oneness petraeus too what made you write the book in the first place? >> i had a lot to get off my chest. i have three kids at the moment. i did marry a white female and we now have for the first time
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in history eckert race movement, by racial movement and a lot of my thoughts today are centered on racial identity. i'm fascinated by people who call themselves [inaudible] the past 30 years, 25 years if you ask any wonder background you were considered african-american. so racial identity crisis are still fascinating and so i really wanted to drive into and write a book about how race changes in the 35 to 40 years. >> how has it changed? what is the biggest thing you have seen today or growing up in the 60's? >> well it is questionable because many people think that race relations has moved forward in a very positive way and i question that tremendously. we still have a massively segregated society.
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86% of whites who live in the suburbs are in neighborhoods with 1% african-american and we think that judge things have changed massively and see the rim mixed race movement like my kids, how my kids identify themselves growing up in every right now and rural america so i'm not sure mixed race identity i think it feeds off the current polarization of african-americans and whites why there is still the great polarization between african-americans and whites in the society also think it is great potential for the groups, whites and african-americans to come together in a form in the future with. >> thank you. we've been talking with robert moore iii, author of "they always supply would marry a white girl coming to grips with race in america." >> thank you. we are back live in los
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angeles with our final segment of our live coverage today from the "los angeles times" festival love books on the campus of ucla. now joining us is roxana saberi. you just saw her on a panel on the middle east, and she's here to talk about her book, "between two worlds my life and captivity in iran." roxana saberi, how long did you live in iran before you were arrested? >> i lived there about six years and i was just getting ready to leave the country when i was arrested. >> you were raised in fargo, north dakota. why did you move to tehran? >> my father is a iranian and i wanted to learn more about the culture and society. i didn't grow up speaking the farsi language because my mother was japanese and the mutual language is english so i felt the best way to learn the language would be to enlist myself and the country and i wanted to be for an news correspondent and i thought what
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country would be more than iran for the years to come. >> you were arrested in january, 2009 but you had been there six years and lost your passed in 2006. what kept you there? and why did you lose your pass? >> they never gave me clear reason for taking away my pass. but at the time i wanted -- i believed there was a greater need than ever for independent news from here on and i felt the risk of the responsibility to help provide an unlimited basis that was allowed by law and i also found i had a lot more time and new opportunities to write a book about the country. and i wanted to tell stories have different iranian said the different sectors of the society for people of the country that went beyond the headlines and you could tell in a short news reports. >> tell us about that morning, january, 2009. >> i was asleep at nine in the
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morning when the doorbell rang. and i got up, across the living room and there was a man standing outside and a set ms. roxana saberi? i said yes. it said you have a letter. i thought it was the mailman and he came up and i opened the door and when he arrived he handed a paper to me and if this is terri strange because it wasn't even in an envelope. usually the male men don't do that so i was reading the paper and it was and farsi but there were two words that jumped out at mechem adams present, the most notorious prison in iran. behind him came street man and i could tell they were intelligence agents and they started rummaging through my belongings, confiscating books, my laptop, my cellphone. they said i couldn't call for
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help obviously. these men also were armed so i couldn't scream. they said we are going to take you elsewhere for questioning and if you cooperate we will bring you back home tonight if not we are going to take you to evans prison. >> and what did the man by cooperate? >> well, i learned of the next several hours. they took me to an unmarked city in the capitol and questioned me about various things that the focus of the questions were on the book that i was writing and they said for example why did you interview so many people? i interviewed a wide range of iranian and i said i need a good cross-section of society to show balance in this book. why can't interview just five people and say they represent a whole society. and they said who paid you to write this book? i sit nobody is paying me. i don't even have a publisher. i am paying for this out of my
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own pocket. they said it does anybody else have a copy? i said my mother does. e-mail her copies of my chapters and they knew i was going to leave the country soon and publish the book overseas. if you want to work on a book you don't need permission but if you want to publish it you do and oftentimes it gets center and the process. the main goal they had through these questions i learned over the hours is that i was supposed to say my book was a cover to espionage for the united states and was and of course and i knew that the authorities were falsely accusing critics of being biased but i kept telling them it isn't a cover for anything it is just a book. you have my computer, read it. they said we don't believe you. it's too bad you didn't cooperate now we have to take you to evans prison.
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>> how long were you there? >> a total of 100 days. >> what was the worst day of your life there? >> i think there were a few really bad days and was mostly when i was in solitary confinement in the beginning of my imprisonment. nobody saw me taken from my apartment by these four men and i wasn't allowed to tell my family where i was. i was about to take one more phone call but i was supposed to lie about where i was and why i had been arrested. >> who did you call? >> when i was allowed to call my family they sit till your father you have been arrested for alcohol which wasn't true and that you don't know where you are and he should remain quiet and shouldn't tell anyone because you will be free and a day or two and so i was relating this message to my father and
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english with intelligence agents standing over me making sure i followed on his orders and i was trying to convince my father and longing this is not true but he didn't quite get so the soldier confinement was most difficult because i realized the history, many political prisons, the canadian journalist had been held there in a 2003 and died a few days later and no one was ever held accountable and also they pressured me to the false confession about using it for espinel and they threatened me in many ways and eventually i succumbed to the pressure and that is a horrible feeling when you abandon your principles that you think you will always hold true even under pressure. >> you told them you work for the cia. >> i told them what they wanted to hear because they said they would free me if i said it and i
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knew in the past other political prisoners had been forced to make confessions as well. i've seen them televised on the iranian tv and afterwards many of them had been released in some recaptured their lives so i thought this is how things work the what a false conception going is it for propaganda purposes or to per for their political. i'm not a hero i just have to do with other political prisoners have done before me and then i will get out and go somewhere safe and recount my life i felt ashamed of myself from the moment i made that false confession. estimate your father is a iranian, your mother is japanese to the jury is in north dakota. how did that happen? [laughter] you know the iranian japanese-americans lived in fargo north dakota. [laughter] my mother got a job at the medical center in fargo so we followed her there from new jersey. >> roxana saberi is the guest.
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phone number soar on the screen that he would like to pursue paid in the conversation. first comes from south lake tahoe. please go ahead. >> yes, hi. thank you for showing the topic and i don't know if you're old enough to remember the iran iraq war. do you remember that in the late 80's? >> i was living in america at the time but i read and heard about it. spec i just wanted the reason the local police for paranoid about everyone being spies because during that war, the united states secretly backing both iran and iraq. did you know that? >> i know about the iran contra -- >> get to the question. >> this question is have you ever considered that right now in iran the united states government is docking the
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government in power and overthrowing, just consider that if you haven't considered that. >> thanks. >> thank you. >> who represents american interests in the year on? >> the embassy. >> what was their role in your release? >> the investor made several contacts in iran and pushed for my release and also in a meeting with president mahmoud ahmadinejad, the president in geneva pushed for my release. >> what about the u.s. state department? >> the u.s. state department i know hillary clinton made calls to my release and various members tried to help my parents as well. actually found out about hillary clinton calling for my release one day when i told you about the false confession.
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i recounted it while in prison because i felt so guilty about it and i told myself i don't want to be free online is. i would rather be in prison and tell the truth and i told my captors that, too and when i said that my interrogator said we knew from the beginning the confession was false and it made me think why did they arrest me then, they didn't want me to write the book or they wanted to intimidate and reach out when president obama had just taken office and was trying to engage and hard liners don't want that in iran backs like that thinking these things. i ended up staying in prison two days after the authorities announced and was granted be free. i didn't know that. instead of freeing me they kept me and send me to trial and somehow after my trial my interrogator brought me into a room, the interrogation room with a blindfold and i looked down and saw on the desk facing
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a wall there was a pile of news articles in front of me and he said reed these but i didn't want to engage of my interrogator because by that time i believe disalle engaged with him that is what he wanted. he's a don't you want to read these? i said no. he's okay i will read them for you and he started reading these news articles which included for example bbc, cnn, seceded press, such and such calling for your release and this other group gathers positions for your release and hillary clinton is calling for your release and i was surprised to hear this. my captors were fairly aggravated i believe by the call for my release on the part of the various officials of putting people at the state department as well as other officials and other governments and human rights groups and ordinary individuals and i felt so fortunate i got that attention. i really hope many of those
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prisoners were left behind can get similar attention. >> how did the word get out after your initial call to your dad? >> my father had remained silent because i said to him in the telephone call because my captors told me to tell him he's not supposed to talk to anybody about this. remain silent for a think it was 20 or so days but then he began -- he was worried. spinet he hadn't heard from you. >> and he expected i would be calling him soon so he went to the media and announced our daughter disappeared and we don't know where she is. she told us she had been are arrested for alcohol because that is what i was told to tell him. and after he announced that shortly after that the iranian authorities acknowledged yes, roxana saberi is in our custody and later they said she is an evin prison. >> next call from austin texas.
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go ahead. >> caller: yes, first of all thank you for c-span, the only channel worth watching for news and current affairs. roxana saberi it's good to see you back home. number one, with all the talk about pressurizing iran and even attacking at, don't you think about coalesce the nation and in turn strengthen the regime? and number two how vulnerable is the regime really? mahmoud ahmadinejad doesn't seem like he has weakened in any way so again, it's good to see you that, and i will take my answer of the year. thank you. >> thank you. the first question is about the military attack on iran and about the regime. there is this argument that if there is a military attack on iran it would have the hard liners because the hard liners
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in iran like an external enemy should try to unite their followers at home and also argue that there is an external threat so in the name of protecting the national security they will crack down on a society and critics and independent-minded people in the iranian society and also it is an excuse for example of the mom proliferation treaty and also perhaps they might retaliate in ways like hezbollah in lebanon territories. i've heard the arguments and i think that there are hard-liners in iran who wouldn't mind some kind of military attack, not an attack that would remove them from power of course because number one thing for the mystery man in power but the attack that might mean that the nuclear sites but not dream of the regime because that would give them an excuse to crack down further on society and tighten
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the nuclear power and the second question was about -- >> mahmoud ahmadinejad. >> i think they feel they've been vulnerable and that's why they've been forced violence against their own people. i think they are scared of their own people and what they are scared of is the spread of 80 is about democracy and human rights because if these ideas strengthen and the already have been strengthened, then they think it will threaten them because they don't want to share their power so they have been using imprisonment, intimidation and harassment and so on to silence people and in the short run they can silence people but in the long run they are creating resentment fire under the dirt and i think that many armenians feel that this we know they've had demand and tried
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peacefully to accept the demands and have been countered with violence so many of them have been scared and are staying home. it's like a fire under the dirt and when the wind blows a lot about the drug might move and the fire could rise again. >> you write you think there are factions within the government of our working towards change in iraq hook. >> yes. since the events of last summer in the presidential election on june 12th and what happened afterwards in the aftermath what was the most significant civil unrest think some of the factions have lost a lot of their influence and power and pushed aside. but there still remains some places in the eye iranian government would like better relations with the al-sayyid world. but there is competition and
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competing factions and people in power who don't want better relations with the hillside world than draw on confrontation and i think if iran has better relations with america for it said what could jeopardize their own personal political or economic conditions. >> why did you call the book between two worlds? >> that is a good question. i think it is up to the reader to interpret but for me there are different worlds. there is iran and america, east and west, freedom and imprisonment, the physical and the spiritual because in prison i had to tell myself my body is in prison but it doesn't mean that my soul has to be in prison, too and there are decisions you can make even in prison that can help you feel free even if physical you are trapped. ultimately though, i think we all live in one world.
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>> the next call for roxana saberi comes from reseda california. >> caller: yes, hello. i can understand. i also come from a multi-cultural background. i am also of middle eastern descent. i agree with first call you have to understand why the heat us. if i were them, if i was mahmoud ramesh what i wouldn't let any american in their either so you have to understand where they're coming from and also our government is totally occupied by zionism. >> already got the wood. this is a call who calls in nearly every day with that message. so anything you want to respond to? >> i know that america has a history of interference in the country and to ensure there are covert actions in iran as well but the thing is the hard-liners in power exaggerate and exploit
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them so they can tighten their own grip on power and they can save the u.s. is all over the country disguised as journalists, activists, human rights campaigners, members of ngo and student activists and people trying to explore new things so they can have an excuse in the name of national security to crack down on these people so that they can stay in power@@@ @ @ir,i1b
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things and this kind of freedom in prague is not always secure. these kind of parties and gatherings can be broken into are busted and people could be punished. i think it is mostly a sere expression, public expression for certain changes like political freedom, freedom of expression and all ideas that the regime considers threatening. >> a tuitele tiemann. what was the purpose of capturing you? what did they hope to accomplish? >> that is a good question and i cannot say for certain that over time during my captivity i can to various possible conclusions specially after they told me that they knew after booktv.org told me they knew from the beginning of the confession was false and on a later occasion
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the deputy prosecutor told me in private of course basically he knew i wasn't a spy and it made me wonder how often to do they falsely accuse people. i think it is possible they wanted to use my confession as a way to intimidate the iranians who want better relations with america and also to intimidate other journalists, national researchers, academics and so on also i think they need a real-life example and i wasn't the only one they falsely accused of being a spy or trying to revolution were recovered. one of my cell mates was sentenced three years for the revolution but she was a humanitarian worker working for an american ngo trying to administer in exchange program between america and iran and to
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commit official says you are trying to create a revolution to change the revolution through nonviolent means and she was doing no such thing so it is a context in which i was arrested. she had been arrested before me as well as to doctors arrested before me and if you look of the media coverage of their arrests and convictions it was similar to mine that the hard-line papers in the media said america has all these agents in iran and they might look normal, they might look like doctors and so long but really they're trying to overthrow the regime which the doctors of course were innocent. >> were you ever tortured? >> i wasn't specifically tortured but i was under psychological and mental pressure and when i was released from prison people lost me if i was tortured and i said they didn't touch me so i guess not but human rights activists told me there is something called white torture which doesn't leave a mark on the body but can
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devastate the mind and the conscience and the combination of manipulation and intimidation like putting you in solitary confinement without access to an attorney or to your family and also putting such pressures on you that you just feel like you would lose all sense of self to a committee and you feel a sense of humiliation and shame, and i think they are at def in this and know these techniques can be effective in wearing a prisoner down. >> when did you first see a lawyer? >> i first saw a lawyer right after recounted. actually the day i was taken into court which was i think maybe about five weeks after my arrest and i was trying to recount that day a man came up to me and said ms. roxana saberi and he said i am your lawyer. i had never seen him before.
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i thought maybe my interrogators were playing a trick on me and saying you have a lawyer. i went on to recount my confession to the magistrate and afterwards i was allowed to talk to this man who said my boyfriend in iran had found him for me so that was the first time and then he told me that my parents knew where i was. >> how effective is a lawyer in tehran? >> it depends on what type of lawyer you have. i know many journalists in jail today in the iran have not been able to see lawyers, sometimes they are appointed by the regime and they are not aware of rebuke representing them well. in my case mine were under a lot of pressure by the authorities may be the intelligent industry or the fiduciary and i feel they did not represent me as well as they should. the lawyers i really wanted was a nobel peace prize winner who
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was very courageous and represented a lot of i was not allowed to hunt. i was threatened from having them. >> how much did a lawyer cost? did your parents before it? >> yes i'll let my father take care of it. >> so how much did this whole ordeal cost you? do you have any idea? >> financially? >> yes. >> i can't say. my parents came to iran but fortunately -- on the one hand, the cost is more emotional. i think my parents are difficult even though they are very strong fortunately i had a lot of support and they had a lot of support in north dakota, the neighbors took care of the home and they said that a fund to
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help and my all modern in the northwestern university in so many others, friends and total strangers were very supportive and now there are so many innocent people in prison and including journalists, human-rights activists -- >> still there. are the in evin prison? >> and evin prison and have not seen a lawyer even ones and the will year is an independent minded person who would represent them well. they've only been able to call home once and one is suffering from depression and the lummis and the work on the hong first-rate and i hope people can continue. their web site is through the hiker's.org. you can write a letter and sometimes they get the letters and also journalists need more attention on their cases because there are some elements in the regime who truly do carroll the image of the regime and they
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ought to be seen since they are susceptible to an outcry even on the part of ordinary individuals in different countries. >> of the day that he left evin prison, how long before you got to the airport? did you take a scheduled airline flight out of the country? >> it took a few days before i could leave the country because the that confiscated my passport and they didn't want to give them back right away and i think they wanted to keep them even longer but fortunately i was able to get them after two days. >> how did you do that? >> my boyfriend called some people and i don't know exactly what happened. but in the and i could get it because i thought they would keep me there longer and who knew, i would be strongly monitored so i was able to get them and with my parents i was able to leave the country and it happened so quickly i didn't get to say goodbye to a lot of my
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goodbye iranian friends because i made some good friends during those years. >> do you foresee going back there? >> i hope i can someday. now is probably not the best time but i grew to love the country and i hope i can see my friends again. >> can you e-mail them? >> i can. >> do you? >> usually i use a different e-mail address. i don't want to get anybody in trouble. >> roxana saberi. pure is the bootween two worlds my life and to the activity in iran. thank you for joining us on booktv. and that will wrap up the ten hours of live coverage of the "los angeles times" festival of books 2010 here on the campus of ucla. thank you all very much for being with us and thanks to everybody who participated and we have a lot of folks at c-span who've been working on this project and we think that as well. as you can see it is a beautiful summer day. it is midafternoon in los
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angeles and everything we've shown you will be free air tonight at 1 a.m. eastern time, 10 p.m. on the west coast so all fi and h
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