tv 2014 Texas Book Festival Saturday CSPAN October 25, 2014 11:45am-6:01pm EDT
>> the system is still going out. >> what i would like to say is that when somebody tells the truth you find yourself in great peril. there will be many, many people who will be upset with that truth. over the years, and particularly the tapes, i found a level of cooperation that shows nothing but the fact that i, as i told the senate, was under testifying, particularly about the president. i would also find cooperation -- corroboration for virtually everything else i said, but i try not to make the book about myself, but some of that in the footnotes, there were certain -- that tapes were certainly my salvation. >> as a professor teaching cold war history and presidential history, you cannot skip over the nixon years. it is a big part of american
history. he wins and 72 over mcgovern , the biggest landslide in history. in fact, at dec. 72 he says someone asked not to write a book about all of this. and having the most successful presidency of all time. but, boy, how the mighty have fallen. that story, of constantly looking at the interest, how someone can be the most powerful person and take that kind of cataclysmic fall, and these tapes are forming of just a part of the story. they need to be supplemented with memo, oral history. i wanted to think john dean for coming here to austin and providing your insight and firsthand knowledge and stealing the buck. [applause] >> and he wrote a biography
book festival after this short break. coming up next a memoir. [inaudible conversations] >> interested in american history? watch american history television every weekend. visit c-span.org / history for more information. >> after reagan was diagnosed with alzheimer's he said to an aged, well, it must have some positive side. i will need a new friend every day. the great optimism a president reagan. the book reveals that the reason that john hinckley was able to shoot president reagan is that the reagan
white house staff overruled the secret service to let spectators' within 15 feet of reagan as he came out of the washington hilton, totally and screamed. and the secret service did not want that, but they caved spineless lee to what the reagan white house wanted. so ironically it was reagan's own staff that really caused the assassination attempt, and this has never come out before. it is confirmed on the record both by the agent who was assigned to teach what they call the reagan attempt at the training facility and also by peter well as san who did a report for the treasury department when he was general counsel. the secret service was within treasury. the report never said that it was reagan's white house staff that was responsible for the rest. he later became white house
counsel under reagan and confirmed on the record as well that that is exactly what happened. going back, lyndon johnson was totally out of control. of course, back then the press never reported any of this. he would defecate in front of aids as he was being briefed. he would hold a press conference at his ranch in texas and urinate in front of reporters, including female reporters. when he went into air force one he had this routine of a nearly stripping naked as soon as cnn's in the airplane, even with his own daughters and wife there in the airplane. one day when he was vice presidents, johnson was late for an appointment with jfk, being driven by the secret service from the capitol to the white house at about 5:00 p.m., rush hour, and he was late. and so he told the secret service agent who was
driving to drive up on the sidewalk, get they're faster. the agent, of course, refused. the sidewalk was pedestrians. johnson wrote up a newspaper ended the agent on the side of the head and said, your fired. one agent said, if the guy were not president he would be in a mental hospital. it really is true, and yet we entrusted our country in the lives of our military would to vietnam under his direction to the sky who was really a maniac. and so when you really peel back the onion here, you find that we really have made a lot of poor judgments when it comes to collecting our presidents and vice-president. >> you can watch this and other programs online at c-span.org. >> book tv covers hundreds of of their programs throughout the country all year long. here is a look at some of the events we will be
furthermore, go to our website, booktv.org, and visit upcoming programs. [inaudible conversations] >> and you are looking at a live picture in between sessions of the 19th annual texas book festival. more from austin, texas in just a minute. [inaudible conversations] >> the nuance of the movie contagion, a virus that comes out of nowhere, and we did not know until 2002 that the fruit bats are maintaining a whole spectrum
of viruses. we learned that when the stars came along. we knew that rabies-like viruses were carried by a vampire bats and some cases elsewhere of very closely related to the virus is being contracted as a result of debt at bites, but before 2002 that was all we knew. then 2002 and, we think it is influenza, it is not they worked it out and about three months. in the end what it was was a virus that came out of bats, went into all little animal in southern china, being used as food and, it comes out of the forest areas, and infected humans and in those live in the markets, and chinese new year, and it spread quickly, it spread to a hong kong, singapore,
toronto, and they were the main areas infected in east asia. the only area out of asia was actually toronto, and it killed about 800 people. normally in the united states 25-40000 people die every year of influenza. this killed 800 people in total. because it was a new infection and not identified initially and people were dying horribly culpable and hospitals were dying, medical personnel were dying, there was a great deal of fear. in the end it cost about 50 billion in economic loss with people not traveling, using hotels, buying stuff. and so it was a major economic problem, and that is really what alerted the world to the fact that can be extremely dangerous. that really convinced various steps to five governments that we have to
take them very seriously. it also convince the people in real power but even they could be infected in. so that was one of the reasons we took the h5 and one soul seriously. now we have been contagion we have the same situation, a virus that infects the pig. the pig is a budget by a chef. the chef shakes hands with could post a row who then, even though she is not feeling well me, goes back to the u.s., stops off a bit in chicago where she has something of a liaison and then she was back to the family in minneapolis. and this is worse than any we have ever seen to anyone who'd gets infected, dyes, and in fact lots of other people, the most hideous virus in the world but is of very good informant about
infectious disease. it is well made, and the actual control of the science was given to e in lipton, a very good and virus disease medical new at columbia university, so generally pretty realistic. a few things were unrealistic like the fact that they're killing hundreds of thousand people dying horribly and very quickly they say they have three people working and the problem. but it shows the cdc at work, how important the cdc is, and that is a big point in my pandemic book. we maintain this statute of public health services because they are extraordinarily important in protecting us against serious infections. 70's cost-cutting times of the things that we all do as citizens, but particularly in the u.s., is to make sure that the public health services are fully maintained because their the
sorts of things that can be knocked off by cost cutters and people don't even know this until something goes wrong. >> you can watch this and other programs online at booktv.org. >> here is some of the latest news about the publishing industry. the cia took issue with the content of former director leon panetta memoir. mr. panetta allowed his publisher to start editing the book before receiving final approval from the agency. book publishers simon and schuster has agreed on a multi-year deal with amazon of the pricing and profit margins of its books. the new york times reports that simon and schuster, with some limited exceptions , will control the-book pricing. bin bradley died at the age of 93. he oversaw the watergate coverage and author of the
mark a good life published in 1995. stay up-to-date on news about the publishing world by electing s on facebook at facebook.com/booktv or follow us on twitter @booktv. you can also visit our website, booktv.org, and click on news about books. >> book tv live coverage of the 2014 texas book festival continues with columnist and television commentator charles blow. he will be speaking about his new memoir, "fire shut up in my bones". [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] >> so let me just start and then move on very quickly.
so thank you very much for joining yes at the 19th annual texas book festival. please make sure that your cell phones are off. it is a great privilege to be on the grounds, so be respectful. immediately following the session charles will be signing it books purchased at the festival at the signing tent. for those of the he did not get to take a picture with him on the podium, that might be your moment. hang around long enough. he did not promise to stay as long as anyone was to, but i'm sure he will take some. it is a privilege for me to be moderating this panel with charles blow. just quickly, i won't give you a lot about me, but to give you a context i am a writer living in austin and have a book coming out next year about people who have gone from the left to the right of the political spectrum and i am affiliated with the university of texas at austin in a variety of ways. anyway, enough about me. charles blow, most of you
probably know this -- that is why you are year -- is a new york columnist and cnn commentator, a former art director of the times, a graduate of rambling state university, father of three amazing children -- and taking your word for that, but i believe you. >> they are amazing. >> a resident of brooklyn command possibly if you read the book may be the only has to -- person in the history of the new york times who single-handedly convince them to take a position entirely designed around -- >> yes. >> is anybody follow that? >> i don't know. i don't want to know. i want to call on to it as long as i can. >> i wanted to read you one kind of a quotation about the book from a writer who i admire a lot. it is kind of meaningful. this is henry louis gates, a professor at harvard. he says, "fire shut up in my bones" is a profoundly moving memoir of the coming of age of charles blow as a black boy in the deep south,
of the way his gifted and sensitive intelligence slowly begins to kindle becoming a blaze with wonder at the world and his place in it. above all this is the story of a courageous leader honest man are rising at his decision to stop operating at the river and just be the notion, a vast, deep, and exactly where it was always meant to be. many of you have probably read the book. for those of you that have not, that is an apt description. i think we will start, charles will read a short passage from his book. we will do q&a for 20 minutes and then open it up to questions from the audience. you want to set it up. >> sure. so danielle and i just met. he was giving me suggestions for what he thought i should read. i thought they were great. they were, like, very dynamic. hazing, trauma, guns, which i think our fantastic only i have not read those and what i have been reading. so when i get a chance to
read i read things that, for me, are more provocative of language and growing up in the south and the way that i considered it. and i am going to read the passage probably right after wears is -- where he suggested, chapter one, and i think it just says so much about the complicated web of family. it says a lot about poverty. it says a lot about pain and longing, and it also struck a point right out of the gate for the book about the fallibility of child created memory, which i wanted to make sure that you understood that from the beginning that i was investigating the memories themselves. so the first memory i have in the world is of death and tears, that is how i would mark the beginning of my
life, the way people mark the end of one. my family had gathered at poppa joe's house because the increase was slipping away, only i did not register it that way. for some reason i thought it was her birthday. poppa joe was my great grandfather, a man graced with his late up wife who passed the days in a hospital bed squeezed into their former again and looking out through a large picture window that faces the street watching the world that she was leaving, literally passing nearby. we were in the living room when he called to us. i think she is about to go. that did not know what that meant. i thought it was time to give her a gift. with that, my family filed into her room, surrounding her with love, hearts have the. mine was light. i thought we were about to give her something special. they knew something special was about to be taken away.
she peacefully drew her last breath as her head tilted and she fell still. no dramatic death rattle, no last-minute concession. she drifted quietly from now until forever, a beautiful life, obviously surrendered, but i recorded it differently. i thought she had turned to see a gift that was not there and something went tragically wrong. she took the air with there. no one could breeze. they could only scream. my mother was overcome. she ran from the house, and i ran behind her. she threw herself to the ground, her back rocking. and i issued the hawks away. i was too young to know what it meant to die, but tears i
knew, sarraute flooded out of my mother like a dam had broken. she would soon rebuild. as a child i would never see her cry again. i spent most of my life believing my 3-year-old version of what happened that day and tell as a adult i recounted the story to my mother, and she said this sort -- set the story straight. are gathering was not to celebrate the day she was born but to accept it was her day to die. [applause] >> i will try to restrain might tabloid sensibility. one of the passages i had asked charles to read is about him getting haze fairly violently in his return.
i am trying to restrain. [laughter] listing to that passage brought something up for me, something personal which is just, the book is so obviously deeply personal. a vulnerable. you're talking about things in the book, child abuse, complicated section malady that most of us are not super comfortable having out there in the world. one of the questions is, what prompted you to us write the book? >> not even in the slightest . one year i was having drinks with editors, and they knew that i was a single dad. well, you have to write something for our father's day issue. i wrote this short thing about having to learn to do my daughter's hair. then i thought to myself, i have a million stories from my life.
i should start to write them down and maybe sell them to another magazine to publish. i started to write. i did not get around to selling. but it was wanting to see them written. one of the great lessons about writing is that people say you write the book you want to read. i was just writing things i wanted to read. is there a moment where it becomes something that you know that is the book, that you know you're going to write as a book. their is a moment like that. in 2009 there were 211- year-old boys, one was in boston named carl, and one was in georgia named
charlene. they had both endured years of homophobic bullying, 11 years old, and within ten days of each other they both hung themselves and their own homes know the pain, know what it feels like to be bullied, ideas of suicide , and it cannot continue to be this i'm kind of pain in the world. and maybe if i read it i will be able to explain what that feels like. the thing about small children is, they do not always have language to
explain or express what they're feeling, to ask for help, and i thought, as an adult, i have that language. it is the one thing that i have. the other thing about small children, particularly those who commit suicide sadly is that they do not always even right suicide notes, so you don't -- there is no way to even know what led them to the point. and i thought that the book, in a way, would be there suicide note, their swan song, there eulogy about what the other half looks like, what it looks like when you walk up to the precipitous but don't go over and walked back from it and it may not be easy, and it may not be always neatly wrapped, but it can be beautiful. you can learn to love yourself, and you can love
others. and you can have a family, if you so choose, and you can live a life that is full and rich and leaves a mark on the world. and so i wanted to write that. the other side was, i was apparent. and, you know, at least one of my kids was about their age at that time. i just could not understand the kind of overwhelming sorrow that a parent must feel if you are in your own home and call a child to dinner and they do not come, go into the room, and you have to cut down the lifeless body of an 11-year-old child. i don't know how you even go on from that. it is such an overwhelming feeling. i thought, no parent should ever have to feel that. every parent needs to understand the depth of pain and sorrow that a child can feel. if they can't, i can.
>> one question i had on that topic, was it difficult for you to write, i guess, either in this sense that it was painful to go back into some of these memories, dramatic memories or in the sense that these were things that you have processed but had not been public with? >> i think you're right in the sense that they were kind of settled issues for me, but because they were settled issues it was not painful. it was very easy to write about. i have so much distance between -- i mean, this book ostensibly in is when i am 21 years old, two decades ago, a difference between me and the little boy i am writing about, so i can write it as i remembered it and the feelings i had but also with enough distance that it is almost
representative tosh, i am reporting on myself as much as i am writing of of the feeling of being in those moments. so i think that, you know, if i had tried to write i am not sure would have been able to because it would have been so raw and so present in my mind, but now because i had enough distance i could write about it easily and then not -- the passion not overtake me. >> i sort of have one thing the struck me. you are talking in provocative terms about your childhood. you're only six years older than me. i grew up in a small city in the northeast. felt like you were talking about a different time, almost a different country, and i guess the question that i have is, and maybe you can describe where you're from a little bit, but did you ever have a feeling -- was there a moment, a time warp that you felt you were stepping into
a different -- in to sort of the 21st century or the late 20th century, or did you never experience it that way? >> i think one of the interesting things about small-town america is that particularly before the internet age it was incredibly isolated from the rest of the world, and so you would have intrusions of modern life, television, and see things, people living in big cities, but it was the same way you read in my book , those things felt foreign to me. wait, apartments, a high floor, not on the ground floor, no yard, they cannot farm, grow their run vegetables, i don't understand what is happening. all of that was just as foreign to me, but i do believe that one of the
idiosyncrasies put one of the beauties of small-town america is that things kind of pass it by. so it is timeless and away, and it is best oriole, and you do grow up very closely linked to nature, which does not necessarily have that same kind of decade marker that the rest of the world as an your looking at, when you interact more with architecture as it moves forward and a lot of technology, i think, moves forward. we just did not have that. strangely enough when i started to go to a bigger cities and even when i first came to new york, was eire stunned by all of the buildings? yes, but when i moved there kate, in no way, fell to me like a collection of small towns more so than this big,
sprawling city. have the same kind of metabolism. year to the san grocery store, dry cleaners, coffee shop. it was communal. my house in our small town was communal, always people coming and going. that is what my house felt like. so, it did not feel like a giant separation. what scares me is suburbs because i do not understand that. the idea that people -- you stay in there all night, and no one comes by, it freaks me out. i cannot understand it. but the small town to big city thing made sense to me in a strange way. >> one of the things that struck me in reading the book is, on the one hand you're talking about the small amount -- small-town
which can feel parochial and yet you are talking about how it is complicated and difficult and there are aspects of trauma. all of these steps show a real sophistication about how to move around and succeed in these oppressively larger worlds. one question i have, you must have had these real sources of sustenance at home, or that is what i imagined. you know, you're talking about these people that gave you some sense of confidence or rootedness that allows you to go out into the world and navigate. >> well, i grew up around elderly people. i never went to preschool. elderly people were my preschool. you know, my great on : babysat me during the day, would take me to meet all of
his -- we would stop by all of his elderly friends. so there is a certain wisdom that they in part in no way of navigating the world in which you are not afraid of it anymore and that you are at peace with end they have this miraculous ability to slow time down so that the chaos ceases and a clarity about what is important in the world. and i always took that with me, even as an adult. so right, you know, in this chaotic world was a role to make it calmed down all of the time and see clearly what i needed to do in order to survive it. a lot of this is just about survival. baldwin used to say, no one who has ever struggle with
poverty knows how truly extensive it is. and part of that is paid in stress and trauma and just dealing with and surviving it. and i was able to the pay that because i knew how to navigate it because of these people teaching me how to navigate. >> we should institute -- think there is a model for innovative preschool. he said that was bald and end? >> yes. >> want to ask you about james baldwin. you have talked about camelot. and i was interested in that i kind of wanted to know what he meant to you. finding him for me as a white car from the northeast was revelatory. i remember tears in my eyes bring in one of his early collections of essays. here is someone who understood me. it sounds like he had an
impact. i just want to know where you found him and what he means to you. >> well, baldwin is kind of young drop probably high-school, early college. i am finding young james baldwin. there is an early. and he is unapologetic, incredibly clear, fears, abrasive. their is a bravery in his ability to articulate and willingness to articulate and willingness to stand alone if he must because he must stand on what he believes. and it occurred to me that
that was a model for how to be both as a human being but also as a writer. whatever the truth is as you recognize it to be, you must xl that into the world. and he was doing that constantly. and to be who he was at the time that he was being who he was was an incredibly dangerous, just as a person. it did not conform to any norm. it was not part of any movement. he is an openly gay man before that was in any way a cool thing to be, and refusing ever to apologize for that. you know, advocating fiercely for the african-american community and what it meant to live as an african-american man in this country and the kind of
cheated nature of all of our destinies together and not being afraid to say that allowed was an amazing thing to read. and this is decades later, but it still looks like it was written for me at that moment. >> you said you found him when you were college -- is it fair to say that you found him at a time when you were still somewhat early in the process as a writer and artist of being comfortable with your own voice? i mean, is that fair? >> i was not writing in the way that i am now. i kind of went back to all of the people who i consider my literary mothers and fathers, people who helped to see myself and literature
but there were years when he was just a remarkable presence. i was not trying to be him. it was a model for how you could be as a person and be brave in the world. >> but sort of an inspiration for you in the struggle to and have it yourself as a person because that is a lot of what your book is about. you talk are feeling separated from yourself, wrestling with your sexuality. >> i think, you know, when you -- when he was struggling to finish his first book he said that he thought he would never finish it. he went away to switzerland to then said, you are not chance baldwin.
and nothing but write. and in he had never allowed himself to listen in america, but he did there because he was trying to remember what he must have sounded like as a child before he started to hate himself. and that was revelatory for me. the idea of reaching back to remember yourself in your troops to form before all of the artifice gets built around you, build your defense against the world. it was not to emulate him, but to find, as you say, much resource, which is a southern gothic deep in color. so we're not going to sound alike in that way, with that exercise of trying to find yourself was real for me and it was instructive.
>> i wanted to ask you a little bit. in the beginning i was fascinated by the passage in the book about your fraternity life and the hazing. one of the things i wanted to ask you about was a real ambivalence that i sensed toward that. you talk about this fairly brutal hazing and your struggle with that, participation in nafta movement away from that. and then at the very end you mentioned two of your fraternity brothers, one of them i think is the godfather of one of your kids and one is the godfather of another. at the same time you ultimately rejected that approach these are people obviously home you are bonded to for life. i was wondering if you could talk a little bit about the experience of hazing and your struggle with it and were you are on that now. >> i don't think you have to turn away from the people to turn away from the process. all of us as adults can say we were being ridiculous.
you know, it does not require cruelty to build lasting bonds between people. i think the part of that is for a lot of young men and exercise in trying to find a proving ground and saying, i can be tough and you can testify am. this is something that feeds on itself, and that is what has happened with us. end part of the reason that i wanted to spend quite a bit of time on that in this park is that if the kind of -- it is the kind of thing that will never die unless somebody shines a light on it, and a harsh light on it and says, this is not honorable, this is not a victimless crime. this is a real thing where each of us relinquishes a bit of our own humanity every time we're cruel to
another human being. i want to show that a light of day. and i can look back on that and say, you know, that is not the way we should have done it. i think you will see that we were all caught up. and they are good people that can move on from it in the same way that i can. >> do you think there is a connection between hazing and the cycle of violence there and the cycle of sexual violence which is another thing you experienced? >> i don't know if it is an absolute connection, but i do believe that it is -- of the way we understand and construct masculinity in society completely leads to hazing being a real picture and all sorts of things.
military, you know, we keep seeing these things pop up in sports. it is everywhere. and, you know, this idea is, what does it mean to be a man in society? you toughen the body and can be cruel and withstand cruelty. and that sort of constructs, i think, can also feed into sexual abuse of sorts but is not necessarily be connected >> so we're going to take in two minutes questions from the audience. i want to segue into that by asking you to, stepping back and talking about the reception of this book and experience of the book. i was searching ever the last few weeks, and -- because i am not savvy about twitter, but he is a twitter phenomenon. there is is hashtag, and it
is some #teamfire. there is an extraordinary connection that people feel to you with this book. is that something you expected? this seems remarkable. i don't think that happens for every book. >> that was not what i expected. i am unapologetic belief -- i have a therapist. i believe that every person -- person on this planet if you can afford it should have a therapist. [laughter] [applause] in the black community, there is a stigma, black people don't go to therapy. we go to church. i go to a therapist, too. our go in and say, you know what, my publicist told me my life is going to be over. he said, charles, it's not going to be over. that is sweet of you to say. i genuinely believe that i both had to write it but also that it was the end of my life, and had no idea what would happen on the
other side. so part of me to see people respond in a way that they have has been overwhelming. sometimes i do not even know what to say. i will get e-mails or people come to me, you know, in a book signing line and say, i have never told anyone i was abused as a child, and they are kind of whispering it. i don't even know what to say to that. they never had language to help them to describe themselves in the world and that i have given them language. i think that what that says is that it is a testament to truth. regardless of what your truth this, if you can find the language to articulate it, it can never be foreign to another human being because it is human.
the truth is the basis of humanity, and just by articulating it, we can act ourselves one to another. [applause] >> let's segue into the question and answer. if you could line up right here and we will take too many for the rest of the time. it looks like we have our first taker. [inaudible question] >> my question about this book is, did in the riding of this book, was there ever a moment when he felt that maybe i should not publish this book?
my second question is, how long did it take you to write this? are you planning on writing anything else? >> i am going to go back. i hate that last question because i have no clue what the next book will be. people keep asking me. i don't know. i hope that something will occur. i don't know what it will be it took nine years to write. i was not writing like a lot of authors. i was writing on the background. so it took longer than it would if i were just concentrating on it. but i think it is the first part of the question, you know, he cannot be -- if you -- i mean, as the title suggests, this is jeremiah. end of winey again, in up
off through the bible. he is like, you know, i don't want to go out and do this. every time i say something they do not take it well. then he said ten cells, when i try to hold it in it feels like a fire shut up in my bones. if the book, as this one did for me, feels like something that you cannot hold in because it hurts, then you have to write it regardless of whether or not you feel that there may be some sort of negative consequence of writing it. yes, were there moments where i thought, oh, you know, this is going to be horrible for my life? yes, there were, but i was still committed to the idea that i must do this. every time i had that thought i would think about those two little boys. if i can't do it for me, i can do it for them.
>> you have mentioned and james baldwin. can you talk about other african-american writers you consider among your favorites and why. thank-you. >> this is corny. we brought it up before. my literary mothers and fathers. this is my angela. a large part of her childhood, her grandmother, it is 40 minutes from ibook where i spend a large part of my time with my grandmother. when i am reading and she makes a reference, you are riding my life. it literally was neat seeing myself in literature. it was not some abstraction. but, you know, morrison and
walker and langston hughes as a public, they all seemed to be writing to me as a child. i think that the children first come to know themselves by reflection. and it is almost a shame we do not have enough books that reflect a enough of the breadth of humanity and diversity of the population because that is how we ground ourselves and how i became grounded with being myself. >> kind of 82-part question, i guess. i think maybe many of the people here found some type of common experience in your book. i know that i did. it parallels a lot of the things for me growing up.
and once you arrive at a place like i am today you look back at your childhood and realize they're is a vulnerability about you that oftentimes you cannot come to grips with and affects some of your interpersonal relationships today. i noted as mine. when did you get to the point, or have you gone to the point of allowing yourself to be totally vulnerable in spite of? >> well, this is one step in that direction. my life is now quite naturally in the open book. >> yang. [laughter] >> but as i right here, concealment makes. [indiscernible] you have to recognize the power of confession.
confession almost -- claiming self and loving yourself openly and forthrightly in the world and saying, this is my life and this is my experience. so many of us live so much of our lives hiding and pretending and assume that everyone that we need and encounter is hiding and pretending to some degree. and part of relationships become getting behind the mask. over what time will they share more and more of themselves. and the more they share the more you feel like you're now in a relationship with that person. and there is an incredible power in doing away with that entire dance and sing, you cannot have to work me out from behind my mask because here in all this. and what i have found is
that courage begets courage and disability begets disability. and just the act of being brave enough to say, i have nothing to hide it, i have nothing of which to be a shame, i have nothing. here is all of me, that attract so many people who are so thirsty for it, that experience of sharing the whole of themselves without the dance. so i think that it is kind of contagious and addictive. the more i do it, the more i want to do it. thank you. [applause] >> first, just let me say thank you both for your book and your comment today.
my question is, i was wondering if you could connect the dots a little bit and talk about how you see the intersection of this book with your work in the new york times, i you see yourself as a journalist and someone writing memoirs and the tradition of james baldwin, particularly in light of the fact that recently we were having important and painful conversations in this country around race, particularly around ferguson thank you. >> in no way i guess there connected. people often think about my column because i use data and say it is a numbers column. it is about beliefs and biography nba here. a large part of that is my biography. when people say, your the only black columnist at the times. yes, i am the only seven columnist at the times. and in terms of the kind of
cadence of the writing, that matters more, and also in terms of my sensibility, it alters people's construct of what is completely conservative liberal thinking. i am constantly trying to remind people, whether my feelings about gun-control, i grew up with a gun rack over my dead. every boy and i knew had one. we made them ourselves and had rifles. the idea of does not make any sense to me whatsoever. so i bring that kind of sensibility into the riding and say, you cannot make caricatures of people. when we do that we kind of looked past each other and are not able to see each other. when we can see each other, we cannot empathize with each other. >> your book was so
viscerally honest, and get you right also about politics, an industry does -- that does not reward that . has writing your memoir changed you feel about writing about politics and how you write about politics? >> i don't think so actually i have been writing a memoir longer than the column, but, for me, and they are different things. the column, big shot, big trends, politics, economics, that sort of things, this is , i got to go home and just do character study and just did really deep into feeling and really talk about relationships. the column is not a place to really dig so deeply into
relationships. again, characters and painting pictures with words . so i see them as separate things which is another reason i need to be working on another book because now i have no crown. [laughter] >> i wonder if after you decided to be quite vulnerable and it see what others would think a lot you and what you are writing, how then did you navigate to what are my children going to think about what i write? what would be there response ? >> in our family we have family meetings. i sat them down when i finished the first draft before we sold it. i printed out copies and
found them and said, hey, i wrote a book and this is what it says. and they were completely nonplussed. they serve talking about, you know, i have been bullied in school. no part of what i said seemed to register at all, so i let this go. a generational thing. they don't care. i would talk to my friends, you know, they never said anything. i don't think that they're ready. [laughter] so it was a year later. and going to do this again. we sat back down. i said, i just want to make sure the you understand what i am saying that i have written in this book, and it was then a thing, i would really like it if he would read it. and there were looking at me like, you are not going to give us some work. but my 20-year-old actually read it. he is a really fast reader.
and he might have had different feelings about it, but the only thing he said to me was, why didn't you develop my mom's character more? it was an editorial note, not even about content. i was like, i have an editor. [laughter] i mean, i don't know. i hope that that means that they have been raised in a way that they don't see -- they did not absorb the kind of been leader of the society tries to put on people with liberals in particular but also they recognize it is carriage. one thing that i tell them is always tried to be the bravest, most honest person that you know. >> thank you so much. >> one last question. >> after you got past that how did you go about finding a publisher, an editor,
someone to market your book? how did you navigate that? i know nothing about the book industry other than al to read. >> i am one of the lucky ones. they found me. >> when you are a new york columnist actually hover around your doorway. is there a book? is there a book? where is the book? [laughter] [applause] >> thank you all very much. [applause] i want to remind you, mr. bell will be in the book signing to and immediately after this. thank you all very much for coming. >> which is that way. >> which is behind me. and if you are inclined to report to the festival, there is a donation box. i grew up in church and know how to pass the hat. their is a donation box on the table back here. thank you so much. >> that was great. i know.
[inaudible conversations] >> and that was the charles blow of the new york times talking about his memoir. we will take a short break and be back at the top of the hour with offer -- author and professor at it to talking about the fight against muslim fundamentalism. this is book tv on c-span2. [inaudible conversations] >> here is a look at some
>> well, a fascinating figure. he really is. you did know him, you probably just did not know his name. he gave this speech i talked so much about. it is the cotton is king's speech, which everyone knows . so everyone knows about the cotton is king's speech, but almost a cartoon character in any number of ways, a sexually abusive not only to his friends but nieces who were extraordinarily connected. it tells a fascinating story, but he had a very different view of america than men like abraham lincoln. he believed that the way a healthy society work to -- and mind you, he was living in one of the wealthiest societies in the world at the
time. southern slave owners were enormously wealthy, well-educated, owned beautiful paintings that they had on the walls, and i mean rembrandt's. i don't mean ones that their daughters did. they were -- >> my daughter did a painting, i have to say. beautiful, but i understand your point. >> guest: fair enough. they have reason to believe that they had finally gotten their right. and they are not making excuses to say this is why they got it right. they're not making stuff up. there really wealthy, really well-educated, live in extraordinarily beautiful homes for the time. and he believed that they had truly come up with the way society should work. the clinton explicitly response to it in a famous speech what he argues in a speech before congress in 1858 was
that society was healthiest when a few very well-educated, very wealthy man ran things because they were the only ones who had the education and brains to direct society as it should be done. the proof of that was the fact that they were so wealthy. got had honored him with extraordinary wealth. they figured out a good society. and it was for them to direct the labor of lesser beings, lesser beings in this house, men and women of color, to those people, james henry hammond believe they should not have education because that just makes them want more than they could get to. they should not certainly have any voice in american society. they should not get much in the way of clothing or food because that would simply be wasted on them. that money should travel aboard to created this extraordinarily intelligent, powerful class. and that was the way a healthy society would work.
and to see that i am right, look around you. we either richest, most it -- educated people in the world. this must be the best way to do things. >> host: so, abraham lincoln, as you mentioned, gave a speech and wisconsin and a cultural fare repudiating this doctrine and offering his own. can you give us a summary of that? >> guest: he says -- jason hammond calls the majority of people my officials, the pieces of wood that slammed into the ground on which i house rests. the foundation of society, but they literally live in the mud. lincoln says, this is not healthy society works. healthy society works the exact opposite way, the workers create value, not the people at the top of the heap. the people of the bottom create value. and a healthy society works in such a way that those people have access to education and resources so
that they can produce and rice. the more that they produce, the more creative, the more they will employ other people. the way to make a society move in advance is to put government on this side of the equality of opportunity for the average worker. >> you can watch this and other programs online and booktv.org. >> book tv and asked bookstores and libraries around the country about the nonfiction books their most excited about being published this fall. here is a look at the titles chosen by boat people bookstore in austin, texas.
that is a look at some of the nonfiction titles most anticipated by boat people bookstore this fall. you can visit the store in austin, texas or on line. [inaudible conversations] >> book tv is live from the texas book festival in this state's capital city of austin. there are several talks still to come. you can visit us online at booktv.org for a complete schedule of events. we will be back with more in just a few minutes.
>> as barbara explained, this is a book about scary, new, emerging diseases and where they emerge from. and where they emerge from generally is wildlife, from other species, nonhuman animals, and in particular nonhuman animals other than our domesticated animals. there is -- if you have been following certain stories in the news over the last few months you know that one point of entry into this subject is the daily newspaper itself. you've probably heard about hantavirus killing three people who visited yosemite this summer. people have been dying in north texas of west nile fever. in the dallas area alone there have been 15 people
who died of west nile fever just since july. there has been an ebola outbreak again in central africa, the democratic republic of the condo has an elaborate that has killed three dozen people by now and is still going on. there was another ebola outbreak across the border in uganda unrelated to the spillover that had caused the outbreak in the democratic republic of the condo. -- condo. these things are happening. it is a drumbeat of disease, outbreaks, and small crises. there is another on the arabian peninsula, a virus that emerged that closely resembles the sars virus which really scared disease experts back in 2003.
this new sars-like virus out of the arabian peninsula has only killed one person, but another man in a hospital in britain, but scientists all over the world are watching it carefully. why? because they know that the next big one could look something like that. so as i say, there is a drumbeat of these things. of those diseases that i mentioned all have two things in common. they all come out of wildlife, a merger from nonhuman animals. among those that i mentioned they are all caused by viruses which is a particular profile of the scariest of the a exemplars of this phenomenon. the scientists have a fancy name for it, as barbara mentioned. they call these animal infections that pass into humans zoonosis, a virus or
other forms of infectious bugged. it could be a bacterium, it could be a protozoan, like the creatures that causes malaria. it could be a fungus. it could be a warm. it could be something called a rihanna, which causes mad cow disease. but usually it is a virus. the virus more than anything cause these. and they pass from animals and humans not always causing disease. sometimes they become harmless passengers in humans. their is a virus i talked about in the book, and i could not resist it because it has such a wonderfully gruesome name. and you have to find the light side of this subject were you can. and with all due respect to the people who suffer, the people who died -- and there
is a lot of death in this book, and the respect that, but still, still i did not want this book to be just a painful, gruesome duty, just an important, scary book. i wanted it to be a pleasurable reading experience, a page turner, have moments of suspense, mystery and discovery, moments of heroism by some of these scientists are house studying this sort of thing, and, yes, some moments of humor. it is not a very funny book, but i hope it might be the funniest book about ebola that you ever read. [laughter] >> you can watch this and other programs on line and it booktv.org. [inaudible conversations]
[inaudible conversations] >> thank you for coming. the nineteenth annual texas book festival. please make sure your cellphones are turned off. it is a great privilege for our festival to use the capital and its grounds so please be respectful. immediately following the session of this will be signing books purchased at the festival at the signing tent. karima bennoune is a native of nigeria and the united states and lives in northern california. the topic of "your fatwa does not apply here: untold stories from the fight against muslim fundamentalism" is a very personal one for her. her father was an outspoken professor at the university of algiers to face death threats in the 1919s but continued speaking out against fundamentalism and
terrorism. in writing this book karima bennoune set out to meet people who are today doing what her father did back then, trying to garner from greater international support that algerian democrats received in the 1990s. graduated from a joint program and what in north actor concern is that the university of michigan, earning an m.b.a. from the graduate school and a graduate certificate in women's studies. publications have appeared in many leading academic journals, widely cited including the nation magazine, the dallas morning news and the christian science monitor and the violence against women and the u.n. special -- protecting human rights while countering terrorism. she has left a round world and been invited to speak about "your fatwa does not apply here: untold stories from the fight against muslim fundamentalism" in algeria, australia, egypt, poland, turkey, senegal and the united kingdom and around the united states. she served as a member of the
executive council of the american society of international law and the board of directors of amnesty international usa. currently she said on the board of the network of women living and the muslim law. karima bennoune has been a consultant on human rights issue for the international council on human rights, the coalition to stop the use of child soldiers and the united nations educational policy on scientific and cultural organization, the human rights field missions included afghanistan, bangladesh, lebanon, pakistan, south korea, thailand and tunisia. in 2009-2010 she was one of the group of international experts under the auspices of the dutch foreign ministry to develop a new set of policy recommendations on counterterrorism and international law. the travel to algeria in february of 2007 to serve as an observer at pro-democracy protests with the support of virgin action fund, writing a series of articles about these
events for the guardian. in october 2011 she volunteered as an election observer with gender concerns international. most recently her writing about northwest africa has appeared in the san francisco chronicle, the new york times. thank you for being here, karima bennoune. [applause] >> would you let to read a selection from your book. >> first let me say thanks to everybody for coming out, thanks to the texas book festival for having me here and my apologies for starting a couple minutes late but that happens when you try to bring your luggage into the capitol building. and want to tell a story and i am glad i got a laugh because i want to tell the story that is not funny at all. the stories that is at the heart of my book that stayed with me all the time when i do this work because i am a law professor and this is the story of a loss student. any to give you a little background before i read this
story which is called dying for knowledge. this takes place in algeria. in my father's home country in the 1990s in what algerians call the dark decade. this was a point of violence between jihadists groups that were these islamic states at that time in north africa and the algerian government backed by the military. we don't know what the exact figures but somewhere between 100,000, and 200,000 people were killed primarily by the armed groups and there were gross abuses committed by the state. this happened in relative obscurity. the international community did not pay much attention. this was the pre 9/11 world and i think globally we had not woken up to the dangers yet posed by jihadists movement so in that context i would like to share this particular story. his what stopped at 5:17.
that is the moment she felt in the streets on january 26, 1997, an instant after a member of the armed islamic group cut her throat on the outskirts of the city. in november of 2012 when i am finally able to locate them east of algiers ice spends several hours talking with her mother and surviving daughters. sitting on a couch in front of her tv, her aunt wears a long. dress and glasses that heading around her neck. bose stalwart and shattered she shows me her watch which was returned to her by the police, its life these features small green flower buds just ended the spot where the glass is broken. the second hand still aims optimistically upward, frozen 57
seconds after 5:17, and approaching 5:18 that will not come. 22 years old and the third year law student at the university of algiers she lived in a dorm, she wanted to visit her family on that seventeenth day of ramadan. today in commemoration of a historic muslim victory. keyboards the bus for her home town and would never finish law school. her mother tells me everything she had heard about what happened on the bus. just outside the towns of vehicle was stopped at a fake check.. she occupied a seat behind the driver who was a neighbor of hers and held her school bag. she did not cover her head in algiers but she had a friend at shawl wrapped around her hair when the men from the armed islamic group climbed aboard. one came to her, hit her on the shoulder and said partisan of
the government, get up. someone killed her. they grabbed the law student by the arm and she dared to say don't touch me. according -- cheese and turned and e-book at every one. even now the mother appeals to her fellow passengers as she weeps and tells me the story. she did not speak but she baked with her eyes and asked you to save her but no one could. when they got out of the bus, one armed men had a knife and was rubbing it on the pavement preparing to kill her. there are two versions of what happened next. some said she was kicked as she was getting out of the buzz and felt the ground. others remembered she had her throat cut while she was still standing. her death was an atrocity. it was also meant as a warning. in the moments after watch stopped the g i a man told the other passengers if you go to
school, if you go to the university, the day will come when we will kill all of you just like this. the terrorists had posted placards all over the city saying young people must stop studying and stay home. as a law professor i still want to understand why a young woman with her whole life ahead of her would continue her legal education when she could and would be murdered as a result. apparently she said to her father i will study law and you will always have your head held hyatt. i am a girl and you will always be proud of me. i will do the work of a man. a housewife who had long dreamed of ritual and studying, and all six of some did. sister explained our mother inculcated in us the idea that studying means you are a free woman. mom said i am ready to lose all
four of them. i will sacrifice some for knowledge. when people remember someone assassinated by terrorists, as they say she was a girl who was killed for studying law. people say she was an example for us. while still cherishing the values she died for her death was also an agony for her family and so was the way they found out about it. it was always land of terror, that was their home town outside of out years. it had no running water at the time, no electricity after the terrorists attacked the local power station and no telephone service so the family was never sure when to expect her or their other daughter's home. finally, 20 policemen sean lipitor but faced with the mother and her younger children the policeman found themselves completely unable to deliver the news that they had come to give.
when asked how many daughters she had to study in algiers and told enigmatically that she and her husband had been invoked to meet the prosecutors the next day. their work and then the cops drove off and left the family wondering in the dark. she had a bad feeling. any of her college daughters, all three of them, it could have been headed home that night. when the police left the group of neighbors came to the apartment including the bus driver's wife. every wind assumed the family now knew the news. she begged the driver's wife, kelly. the driver's wife shared as much as she could. they cut your daughter's throw. this answer only left terrible questions. she said which one? one neighbor said the one who wore glasses. no one seemed to know the precise facts. with no one able to give her a
definite answer and no working telephone, she ignored the evening curfew and took off with her young son running through the perilous streets until she got to the police station. she finally found herself face-to-face with the police she remembered she said my son, tell me, how many of my daughters? he said only one. one who was asked law school. she was wearing jeans and a coat. the bereaved mother insisted swear to me. he swore allegiance the most awful moment of her life she actually felt gratitude. she said i prayed and kissed the earth and said god give me strength. they were all three at the university. it was day of little less painful but it was one rather than two or three. even as she found she had not lost all three daughters the reality that one was gone and
how sank in. it gave way to rage, she sat on the ground and everything's it came into my mind, that was the hour my struggle began. her daughter describe from long walk home through the desolation. it was far from -- all along the road mom insult to the terrorists. she didn't stop the baxley said if we had ten mothers who lost their childhood did what she did the terrorists could never have won anything. there are many who died before, no one had done what mom did. it was the enormous to make that journey, not to have fear. for her it might have been hurt head. who cares anymore? in the dark streets of the murdered town, she taunted those who had taken her child, you killed my daughter, come and
kilby. after her jeremiah, and told her husband and the rest of the family had to leave immediately. one of the younger sisters later a overcame her own despair, and in algiers as her older sister hope to. i'm fundamentalism was largely zone not completely defeated in algeria. fundamentalism will not win even if they say god is great all day long. the other sister, the lawyer's sister takes me into the fall living room to see her framed portraits which aims on the wall. she had pitch black said that fell below her soul -- shoulders and luminous dark eyes that are now the centerpiece of this room. she does not smiling when the
picture was taken. that displays when a classmate of her's told me. and the lively personality would be a successful lawyer. she had a big future in front of her classmate recollected. in the portrait on the living room wall, she looked both serene and aware of what her future might hold. apparently she said to her mother a few weeks before her murder, put this in your head. nothing will happen to us, god willing. if something happens you and dad must knows that we are dead for knowledge. you and father mesquite your heads hi. her watch stopped at 5:17 but she lives on in algeria and everywhere else that women and men continue to fight fundamentalism like she did by
striving for knowledge and keeping their heads held high. [applause] >> something that love about your book is you are able to balance of eloquently very traumatic, difficult stories with hope, as with should continue to do good in the world's. and reporting on the youth feeder program in pakistan. the theatre workshop. tell us about that and practicing this is a form of resistance. >> great question. let me start with the hope part.
hope is absolutely critical in this story and in fact her name means hope in arabic so hope is really a theme throughout the book. i found myself looking for her hope, she managed to maintain hope. one of the places i've found her hope within the wonderful theater workshop mentioned in pakistan, as this is a wonderful cultural arts organizations that for decades has promoted pakistani performing artists and also brought performing artists from around the world to pay in pakistan and this was a famous playwright, the company was named by his sons and daughters who run it after him and in 2008 they started to receive death threats with the rise of jihadists group, a threat that condemned that and said what they're doing with music and dance was not islamic.
i have the great privilege of being one of the siblings who ran the company, and and absolutely rejected the characterization. in a spiritual mystical way and for him, song and dance was a part of worship. they absolutely refused to give in. they continued with their performances but the jihadists refused to give up as well. in 2008, there are a eight world performing arts festivals which actually struck by a bomber with three explosive devices the injured nine people which was very serious but luckily no one was killed. they had to evacuate the premises. the case is difficult in the way this relates to the theme of optimism which is do you go ahead the next day with the festival? do you decide freedom of expression and the arts are so important that not withstanding
the threat you will go forward, decide the safety of your audience is so important, so primary you just can't take that responsibility and after a long debate at 1:00 in the morning the family decided literally the show must go on. ladies and gentlemen, this is not going to work. this festival is going to go ahead. there is nothing against islam in this so they announced they would go on the next day as planned that they had no idea if anyone would come. think about it. when you made the decision to come here today, if you had to wonder what they there was a possibility of a bombing at this event, wouldn't that have radically change the calculus, especially those of you i see around with kids, and lots of children came to the event and he said if we bowed down to the islamists we will just be
sitting in a dark corner and there will be nothing. didn't know what would happen. thousands and thousands of people, and they were completely terrified. the woman had come to the venue, and you do notice there was a bombing here yesterday. there was the threat of more bonds today. i used to come herewith your mother and high had those images in my mind and i want the festival to go on. we have to be here. with those amazing audiences who have that kind of optimism and commitment to the arts, they were able to finish the festival on schedule and they lost all their sponsors the following year because they were afraid of
the security threat. when i met in 2010 they were in the middle of the first subsequent event they were able to have in the same venue where the bomb -- the bomb had gone off in 2008 and that was the use performing arts festival and was an environment where the pakistani taliban had begun their systematic targeting of girls' schools that would later culminate in the attack on the heroic malala. having been through a bombing, try to be careful, did they shy away from the danger. in fact what they decided to do was to stage girl schools theater so when i arrived i had a great honor of seeing a musical, performed by the girls of low or grammar school and you could just feel everyone holding their breath collectively to see if we did get to the end of this
wonderful wonderful show and when we did there was this group exhale and a burst of applause, and the ovation, a proud fathers, thinking that the bombers made headlines here two years ago for their pessimism for their violence and this night full of hope and optimism is absolutely as important to the story but unfortunately it is a story that is much less likely to be told. >> i am so glad you are telling it and i wonder what you think the most important lessons from your book should be for an american audience in particular. why is it important to know these stories and what should we do about these issues they bring up? >> another great question. i thought about that a lot.
how to boyles this down into the takeaway and particularly the take away in this context in the u.s.. the critical message is everywhere you hear about radical jihadists and muslim fundamentalist movements there are also people in those contextss, women's rights defenders, journalists, artists, ordinary people who are organizing against those movements, who are defining those movements, sometimes risking or losing their lives to stand up to those movements and we don't hear about those people. that has to change. if we actually want to see a successful process of defeating these movements globally which is critical for human rights we need to listen to the people on the front lines who have the most experience dealing with these movements to have a sophisticated analysis that doesn't often get translated into english. those are not the people invited
to talk on cnn. and to listen to those people, that is first and foremost the key take away. >> a few questions, if you're interested in lining up in the center aisle. do you have questions. i want to ask about isis as well. they have come to power after you wrote this book but i know that is going to be on a lot of people's minds and i wonder if you could talk about what the appropriate strategy for the u.s. to deal with that would be if it is a useful or appropriate answer to the tragedies we are seeing in syria and iraq now. >> what is interesting if you
look at the media coverage including the new york times which you use to write for. the isis story, the reality of isis on the ground has been around longer than media coverage. when it was just local people in iraq and syria, standing up to these movements, sometimes dying in droves the world was not paying attention and that is a terrible shame. i am glad the world is now paying attention but now because we have waited, it will be difficult to take on these movements. is so important not just to think of isis as the security threat which clearly it is especially in the region but also globally. but to think of that as a threat to human-rights, to think about the struggle as a human rights struggle and again to remember the syrians and iraqis including kurds in the contexts who have
been leading the charge against these movements. i wonder why are we not hearing about them. i think about a very brave iraqi woman lawyer who was killed in mosul in late september after speaking out very publicly denouncing isis in particular for its destruction of historical sites in her home town and i keep wondering why we never see her picture on television along with the horribly murdered journalist. and the pictures of so many iraqis who have stood up to these movements. i wish i could have gone to iraq for my book but for logistical reasons i wasn't able to but i was able to interview a wonderful iraqi women's rights defender. and an organization called the organization of women's freedom in iraq and this remarkable
organization today is not only speaking about isis against women including sexual slavery and what appears to be widespread use of rape forcing -- using corporal punishment when women do not, they are denouncing those abuses but are running a shelter on the ground in iraq for women fleeing from that violence and even have a help line, a telephone number women can call who are in need of assistance. think about how courageous is to do that work. one of the key challenges is to find out how to support those organizations, those individuals on the ground who are taking this issue on. you can go to the web site and find out ways to support them. i do think force is an
appropriate response, two armed groups that systematically target civilians because it may be the only way to protect those civilians and i do believe this is one of those cases but as a professor of international law i would also say that that course has to be used in accordance with international law. bose the un charter and the laws of war, geneva convention and additional protocols, as i mentioned earlier, the left doesn't like the first part of what i said that sometimes force is necessary and the right doesn't like the second part, that the rule still applies but for me, that is the complicated reality. force can only be a part of the solution. it is a blunt instrument and has to be a part of a much broader approach that includes support free human rights defenders in the region, massive economic reconstruction, support for humanist education which
everywhere i went people told me what the most important long-term solution to the problem. >> we have a question? >> thinking about what in my mind isn't the fact the united states is supporting these at the present moment, libya in the past and afghanistan in the distant past, destined in relative terms. so why aren't you talking against that? isn't that the first thing to do as well as the unconditional support, and underwriting the jihadists movement. >> i don't have that as nike take away because the u.s. is not the center of everything.
everything is not always about us. people have their own regional dynamic. some of the things you alluded to, support for the mujahedin groups and the most extreme groups in afghanistan in the war against the soviet union that helped the problem metastasize because young people including from algeria got training supported by the u.s. and saudi and so on and went home. in the iraqi context there is no question and i say this in the book that what i believe was an illegal u.s. work in iraq in 2003 created the situation which the isis problem, the u.s. is clearly warned by this including allies, hosni mubarak with whom i didn't agree about a lot of things but agree about this.
if you over for a saddam hussein e-book create a thousand osama bin ladens and that is basically what happened. there are both endogenous and exhaustion as causes of muslim fundamentalism and jihad is a. my father was an anthropologist and he always explained, finally understood that meant internal and external and we have to look at all those causes and all those layers of responsibility. i worry sometimes in the middle east, in north africa where i traveled a lot that people use the ideas this is coming from the west as a conspiracy theory that alleviates the responsibility of having to talk about some of the causes closer to home, like religious education, but you are absolutely right that for americans, it is critical to have a discussion about how our policy contributed to this problem and how we have an obligation to help solve it.
[applause] >> i hear use talking about force. let's talk unstable government and politics and how you separate military -- i mean, our history is iraq having a stable government, and stabilization of the iraqi government for the foreseeable future. isis took over because the army abandoned all these fantastic weapons and spent ten years and tens of billions of dollars how do you separate becoming the wing of unstable governments with military force. >> it is absolutely critical, force is only part of the response. use the force that you need to
protect the civilian population in the immediate circumstances and a big part of the iraqi context as to be a political situation and a big piece of that is overcoming sectarianism in the new iraqi government. the new nominations and great pessimism, and the prime minister is said to have ties to very nasty shiite militia groups that helped to create some of the danger among sunnis in iraq that helps to fosters this problem but the key thing is to stop talking solely in sectarian terms. i heard a lot of iraqis complaining about that. they saw the u.s. as putting a sectarian agenda which in the words of mohammad, the agenda as they need defeat in order to move forward in iraq.
>> my question is from an american perspective is difficult to get accurate information on what is going on in the middle east. do you think al-jazeera is a good source or would you recommend some other source of the best accurate information we can get on what is going on currently in the middle east? >> lot of people in the u.s. seem to like al-jazeera as an alternative is worse but for me sometimes it really looks like the fox news of arabia. it depends. al-jazeera, arabic and al-jazeera english are bit different but many people in it middle east and north africa especially women's rights will tell you their view of al-jazeera especially al-jazeera arabic is it is a cut refinanced station that has promoted fundamentalism and been soft on fundamentalism in many instances and i would encourage you to look for alternative independent news sources. a source that i love and that i write for a lot and tries to
publish voices from the region including translation is a wonderful website called open democracy and you can find voices from to nietzsche, voices from syria, voices from iraq and is so critical we find ways to listen to people who are not necessarily communicating in english and make their material available. you can do what i did all the is getting more dangerous and that is go to the region and talk to people. i interviewed 300 people from nearly 30 countries. you are absolutely right. weekend believe what we are hearing in the headlines. you have to work a bit hard yourself to get out there and find more of the truth. >> my name is valerie. i was wondering, i think it is important that we should be engaged with what goes on in the middle east. i am a writer as well.
we have problems in america too. i was wondering, to get engaged with what goes on, can it person do -- i noticed, what was important to have insight to be a part of a movement that made a difference. what can i do to get engage in what goes on? i am in a struggle and a miracle and when you talk about the middle east and the young woman. and the terrorist group involved
while in america, it was important for us in america -- a part of a movement. not only affects us abroad, but the medley. what can we do to get engaged? >> it is true there are serious human-rights problems that need to be taken care of. what happens on the this side of the world -- i believe in universal human-rights, and wherever i went weathered as my father's home country, and we both think locally, and think globally and act locally it seems to me both of those pieces are important. people getting involved bring some of the people like those in my book to the u.s. to talk, to be heard for themselves, to share these stories and you can
do that in a range of ways, you can go to the web site for the book which is karima bennoune.com and there is an excerpt that you can't share. salon.com ran artist stories and you can share those as well. it is so critical. one of the things we can do is to help these people be heard here. >> can you talk about the egyptian military establishment and they're smashing of democracy and the muslim brotherhood and how are we supposed to choose between which is better in terms of cumin right in that struggle because both seem to be locking in human rights. >> the first thing i have to say when asked a question about egypt is to express solidarity with the people of egypt after the horrible killings of 33 egyptian soldiers in the sinai peninsula and when you think of
the amount of press coverage through the canadian soldier killed in ottawa tuesday, but we hardly heard anything about the mass killing of egyptian soldiers by a jihadists group in the sinai peninsula yesterday, one in a litany of big killings of what enforcement and military personnel there. the situation in egypt is very complicated and i don't think we have much time but there is no question the military-backed government is also committing abuses, but i understand why a mass movement of the egyptians, not the past summer but the summer before strongly when the muslim brotherhood in power when they saw the way the muslim brotherhood is trying to to install a theocratic constitution that would set it back 3 years when they saw the way in which the muslim brotherhood was further cracking
down on the press, was imposing more restrictive address on women and so on so i can understand that popular a anger against the muslim brotherhood that led to its ouster by the military. egyptian activists that i talk to. one in particular, a woman's rights activist was so determined to still find -- neither the military nor the muslim brotherhood. and people across north africa and today. and actually understand there are multiple sources of threats to human rights in a country like ours, and there is mainly discussion in the west in the military's repression and it is good to discuss that. women's rights activists have been put in jail, journalists have been put in jail, all of
that is wrong weather is in the name of fighting the brotherhood or not. and the large-scale terrorism being carried out by jihadists movements, some allege at least that some of these are happening with some collusion of the muslim brotherhood. that is not clear. that challenge remains egyptian this, a positive outcome for their revolution which was not a revolution designed to install a theocratic dictatorship or bring back the military. it was about building something better. i call these the imaginary and poetic republics of north africa borrow enough rays from an algerian writer and i still believe those republics are out there somewhere. >> thank you for your informative talk. i wonder about condemning muslim fundamentalism and also being seen as one of the islam of
phobias that is taking -- i was wondering how you balance condemning fundamentalism without being seen as part of the islamowphobia which is taking hold of much of the media in the u.s. and what you mean by the term a fatwa. >> i don't use the term islamowphobia because it mixes criticism of islam and criticism of any religion is acceptable depending on how you do it but it mixes that with the discrimination against real or purported adherents of a particular faith which is entirely unacceptable. the term that i talk about is discrimination against muslims or people assumed to be muslim. obviously that is a very real concern. we have seen the rise of the far right in the west that have a particular anti muslim, anti-immigrant agenda. that is not my agenda and i am that since to say that in my book. i believe both the right and left at times in the west of got this wrong and on the far right
increasingly we are hearing this suggestion that all muslims are somehow a big sleeper cell waiting to be sparked into action and that is just offensive. but i absolutely believe people of muslim heritage have the right and responsibility to speak out against fundamentalist movements and i take very seriously the plea from a very brave pakistani human rights lawyer who asked us in the diaspora please to speak up in support of people like her in pakistan working for peace, working against terrorism and i asked about discrimination and she said i firmly believe that if you speak openly and clearly about this problem, thereby distinguishing it as a political phenomenon which does not reflect the views of most muslims there will be less discrimination, not more. that is what i am trying with many other people to do. [applause]
>> i would like to remind people that our author is going to be in the book signing tend immediately following this presentation. thank you all so very much. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] >> karima bennoune, professor of law at the university of california at davis and other of
"your fatwa does not apply here: untold stories from the fight against muslim fundamentalism". a look at the administrations of presidents lyndon johnson and ronald reagan is next in about 10 minutes. booktv's live coverage of the 2014 texas book festival will continue shortly. [inaudible conversations] >> here is the latest news about the publishing industry. the washington post reports the cia took issue with the comments of former director leon panetta's memoir and the fights and he allowed his publisher to start editing the book before receiving final approval from the agency. book publisher simon and schuster agreed on a multi-year deal with amazon over the pricing and profit margins of its books. the new york times report simon and schuster with some limited exceptions will control e-book pricing. former washington post executive
editor ben bradlee died on tuesday at the age of 93 busy oversaw the newspaper's watergate coverage and was the author of the memoir of good life published in 1995. stay up-to-date about news about the publishing world by liking as on facebook at facebook.com/booktv or follow us on twitter at booktv. you can visit our web site booktv.org and click on news about books. >> where are we now? a question for the present. i like to view this as a moment when iraq in king john syria. when i think back to events a year ago, as someone who was a close syria watcher i don't think i could have anticipated what would happen. of course the warning signs were there. for many of us who follow the middle east in syria in particular but in many ways the syrian tragedy seemed so overwhelming, so deep that the manner in which syria would end
up destabilize iraq and iraq would end up destabilizing syria was surprising in many ways unprecedented. here the central actors of course, isis. isis now referring to itself as the islamic state, was born in the cauldron of the american invasion of iraq, or originally banneds of millicent jihadists trained and cut their teeth in afghanistan in camps in iraq where they became al qaeda in iraq, incredibly brutal and successful until they were squashed by a combination of factors significant among them the u.s. surged. although crushed they managed to regroup, reorganize and grow in strength by capitalizing on the chaos that was then unfolding in neighboring syria. many of you will be familiar with the origins of isis but it can be helpful to take a step back and think about what makes
isis unique. the first is their claim to have established or reestablished a careless state. that is a major buzz word in our media today but i don't think that definition is widely known. it is the normative form of government established by the successors beginning with his immediate successor perpetuated into the important and powerful dynasties that spread islam from the atlantic coast of morocco, and the kayla state is a political institution and prestige in the eyes -- never finished so even as the kayla states became a fiction in reality the restoration to where it had been at the beginning, it was always in effect negotiable reestablish it. there were many -- it was an assault under at a turkey at the beginning of the 20th century and various militant groups over the course of the decade had
attempted or claimed to want to restore this but none had done it until isis this past summer so that is one things that makes it unique, the alleged realization of the goal of re-establishing it. the second thing that makes them unique in my eyes connected intimately to the first is as a group that wages transnational jihad isis is in the business of holding territory. unlike al qaeda, responsible for the september 11th attacks, these groups for the most part do not have an interest in state building. isis is quite the opposite. kayla states hold territory and that makes a special. >> you can watch this and other programs online at booktv.org. >> booktv covers hundreds of programs throughout the country on a yearlong. here is a look that some of the events this week, look for these programs to air in the near
future on booktv on c-span2. on monday we are at the john f. kennedy presidential library and museum in boston for historian richard norton smith's recounting of the life and political career of nelson rockefeller. the same evening at the university of california santa barbara constitutional scholar contents supreme court justices regularly allow their own biases to died how they will. bill haas prize-winning biologist edward wilson comments on what makes humans profoundly different from other species at the free library of philadelphia. next day at ucla megan yao ming francis examines how the civil rights movement affected the landscape of the 20th century. wednesday night at the university of virginia bookstore in charlottesville virginia, up markets and weighs in on the contributions football makes to american culture. that is a look at some of the author programs booktv will be
covering this coming week. for more go to our web site booktv.org, visit upcoming programs. [inaudible conversations] >> founded by former first lady laura bush the texas book festival has been held in austin, texas since 1996. booktv live coverage from the texas book festival will resume in a moment. [inaudible conversations] >> booktv asks bookstores and
libraries throughout the country about the nonfiction books they are most anticipating being published this fall. here's a look at the titles chosen by northshire book store in vermont. travis smiley recounts the final year in the life of martin luther king jr. in death of a king. next in line, temptress, soldier, spy, karen at profiles we for women who served in the civil war surreptitiously. also on north shire bookstores list of nematocysts updated fall titles dianne hales profiles the woman behind the iconic portrait in mode of lisa:a life discovered. wrapping up the list pulitzer prize-winning author lawrence wright recalls the 1978 peace treaty between israel and egypt negotiated at camp david in 13 days in september. that is a look at the nonfiction titles northshirer bookstore anticipates, visit the bookstore in manchester, vt. or online at
her northshier.com. >> it was interesting trying to understand what could motivate somebody to julian such a ridiculous seeming regime. i made contact with him and he and his unit were based on the top of a mountain in rural afghanistan. it a good day to get to the top of hiking. when i got up there i went through a narrow trail and went to a small village at the top and sure enough, sitting in one of the houses were a group of taliban fighters, 12 or 13 fighters all went inside and sat down and they were sitting cross legged, i took out my notebook and started interviewing them and asking questions like why are you fighting against the u.s. what kind of society do you want? what is your assessment of the
1990s regime with the taliban in power? he gave boilerplate dancers but at some point he stopped me and told me, the first foreigner i ever met. can i ask you some questions? sure. this is 2008, president obama had announced -- 2009 president obama announced the troops surge. why is your president wanting to surge troops to that country? i tried to explain u.s. political, geopolitical concerns, domestic politics, then he asked why does your country come to afghanistan in the first place? he knew little about 9/11 so i tried to explain about 9/11 and what that was all about and the war on terror. then he started asking me
questions about cultural life in the united states. csi heard that in the u.s. women walk around naked and nobody controls them. that is not exactly correct. i tried to explain to him the differences in culture between the u.s. and afghanistan. at some point he asked me have you ever seen the film the titanic? i said yes, i have seen the movie and he asked how come your country doesn't make movies like that anymore? it turned out he was a big fan of the titanic as were many members of the taliban. in the 1990s the taliban receive outlawed the titanic but it was popular among members of the taliban and they traded at around and people would go and get leonardo dicaprio hair cuts. that is the first inkling i got that the category in my mind in thinking about afghanistan. the taliban and various political actors there, they get complicated when you talk to people and you stories on the
ground. >> you can watch this and other programs online at booktv.org. this week booktv takes a look at some of the books on weekly standard's online bookshelf. to start out, the history and significance of mecca beyond the religious context. in another great day at sea, jeff red-eye writes about his experiences aboard the uss george h. w. bush aircraft carrier. paypal co-founder peter t. o analyzes the value of start up companies in zero to one. president reagan's arms control director recounts the 1986 reagan/gorbachev icelandic summit. up next the weekly standard recommend sylvia morris's biography of congress woman clare boothe luce and finally marked bentsen emphasizes why football matters and steve allman presents his case against football. to see the full list visit
weeklystandard.com/bookshelf. [inaudible conversations] >> we are back with more live coverage from austin, texas, location of the annual texas book festival. this next event features two authors, ambassador chase huntermeyer about the dawn of the reagan/bush administration and political writer about how lyndon johnson and ronald reagan changed american politics. ..
[inaudible conversations] >> okay. well, good afternoon and welcome to the 19th annual texas book festival. as moderator, it is my job to remind you to a turn of self phones or anything else that might interrupt the proceedings. i will tell you now and try to remember to remind you at the end of the session that our to authors will be signing books and book signing tense one block north of here. okay. i am quite honored and pleased to be moderating a session with two distinguished authors on american politics of different perspectives. jonathan darman was a journalist before becoming a book author, correspondent
for newsweek and covered, among other things, national presidential campaigns in 2004 and in 2008. he most recently has turned his attention to another political campaign in the 1960's. his new book is a "landslide." so jonathan row be talking about that and anything else we can talk him into speaking of. on my left is chase untermeyer, who has been a practitioner of politics. he served in the presidential administration of ronald reagan, george h. kelly bush, and george w. bush. his book "when things went right" is drawn from his diary of the first years of the reagan administration. so please help me give an answer to our to authors, and we will get started.
[applause] jonathan, since your book chronologically comes before chases i will ask you a twofold question. number one is, how did you find covering the campaign of 1964 in historical time after you have covered in real time the campaign of 2004 and 2008. that is part one. part two is, how do you perceive that politics changed in that 40 year time frame? >> thank you. i am happy to be here. the weather is not quite this nice in most places that have been talking about the book this fall, and i have not had need of the charlie crist fan, which i wish we had today under the table. [laughter] that aside, i am happy to be here. it is a great question.
i would say that stepping back from present-day political reporting to look at the 1964 campaign has on the boast -- has on the most basic level made me see politicians a lot more charitably, people who are willing to step forward and run for office. when you cover a presidential campaign, we are hard on them and talk about all of these forces that they should be paying attention to in the country and, you know, how hard it is, what they need to be doing to connect with the country. stepping back and looking 50 years back in time, what you really see is in a lot of ways it is impossible to know what the country is actually dealing with in a moment. for me that really gets illustrated when you think about the 1964 presidential campaign. if you go back 50 years ago this weekend you can see the
next 50 years in american politics being laid out before you. you have lyndon johnson's who has been president for less than a year looking forward to the next week, his landslide election to win the presidency in his own way. he gets really carried away in the rhetoric. on that day he goes to pets bergen says, a time of peace on earth and good will among men. the time is here -- the place is now. when we talk about managing expectations, pretty high. and meanwhile, that same day, that same night as the national broadcast of an
underemployed, underappreciated former actor, ronald reagan, who is at that point still a working actor making the case for barry goldwater and as speech that is sort of universally viewed as reagan's launch as a national politician and the beginning of the storied political career. so to look back at that split screen and say, there you have it, the voice between the two parties over the next 50 years, this johnsonian set of promises for all the government can do to deliver and really solve all of the problems of humankind and the reagan alternative of government not being a solution to the problem but is the problem itself. but that is a pretty impossible standard told lyndon johnson to and the moment to beat this guy, ronald reagan, all the
possible threat is in a lot of ways going to be the one that has the largest effect on his legacy. so i would say that looking at history, i hope that in my current political reporting how will be a little more charitable toward politicians in the expectation of what they should understand about the country. remind me of the second half of your question. >> how has politics itself change in that 50 years between the 64 election and that 2004 election? >> it has changed in a lot of ways. you know, my book deals with the thousand days after the kennedy assassination, which if you want to look at a moment in time where politicians actually got stuff done as opposed to what i think we all feel like today with a can get anything done, is a fantastic moment. with the presidency of
lyndon johnson you have transformative legislation of civil-rights and voting rights. you have the passage of medicare, important legislation on poverty, education, and there really is this sense in both parties that you can work together and pass programs that would transform people's lives. hubbell -- we don't have that at all today. one of the seven themes in the book is that passage from politics being about that johnsonian specialty of managing the congress, and the country and the congress being one in the same, very important for president's going beyond particularly about the country as a whole and beyond just the parochial political machine. and the person who really understands that best is ron reagan.
when he first started running for governor of california, is seen as a joke that this sector could be the best candidate the republicans can muster for our the governorship that year. how bad the republican party , the state of the republican party. what people don't realize is that reagan being able to communicate and since the shift in mood in the country, which she has learned from his hollywood career, are really going to be the most important assets for politicians in decades to come. thank you. >> chase, you observe politics more less from the inside. jonathan and i look at it from the outside. so when did you first vent the shift that gives rise to the title of your book, "when things went right". when did you -- and i assume
you mean is an double sense, things get more conservative and i gather you approve. so how did you did drawn into politics and when did you sense the shift occurring? as early as the 60's with the emergence of reagan, or was it close to the time he joined the reagan administration? >> my actual origins were not with reagan but is vice president, george h. w. bush. i was always interested in politics, going back to junior high school. the opportunity to get involved required working in campaigns which in those days was a generally hopeless cause for republicans. therefore, it was a delight to find this young oil man named george bush running for congress on the west side of houston, which drew my time as a campaign volunteer. so i did address envelopes
and campaign research. and it was a great throw when he invited me to be an intern on his staff. that led me to go to washington with him. at that time was working as a member of the texas house representatives when the vice president-elect asked me to join his staff in the west wing of the white house. i realized that was the end of my active career in texas politics. i torture of this it -- tortured over the decision for about two tenths of a second before resigning my seat and going to washington when i arrived i had the downs of my boss and many people in america that the reagan program would work. and -- >> voodoo economics. >> yes, that phrase was used
by the candidate bush against reagan at pennsylvania republican primary of 1980. it was something that was deadly in the malice and fingertips of the opposition has to be sensitive for vice president bush. at one point he told a national audience that he did not say that. he did not say that as a conscious light. i think at that point he himself had become a reagan night and was embarrassed by their recent memory of that very difficult, long, and bitter primary campaign in 1979-'80. this man was now not only his boss but his friend. so in the way that elder bush has a way of looking toward the future rather than the past, to him of voodoo economics was just some press frays. it was not anything he himself had said. of course, it was all on tape and he had to apologize
when that was shown to a national audience. i think what that illustrated was that it was during the course of 1981, the first year of the reagan administration, as the legislative program began to work its way through congress and as the country began to have a greater sense of itself, a greater sense of confidence that they changed in the mind of the vice-president of the united states as much as the rest of us. >> i will ask a question of both of you because jonathan has posited that the mid-1960s was a time that the political system worked, when a president with a legislative agenda to get stuff done. and chase untermeyer has pointed to another time when the reagan revolution was taking hold and things did happen. i did not ask you how you weigh in on how you assess the situation today, by jonathan has suggested that today it does not work very well, if at all. i suppose we could have a show of hands that could see
how many of you think the political system is working well today, but i wondered -- [laughter] i wonder how much of this is a matter of changing times and how much of it is either the existence then are the comparative lack now of a visionary presidential leader. lyndon johnson had a vision for what america can be. ronald reagan had the vision , and they were both, i think, very successful in communicating that vision. is that what is lacking, or have there been structural changes in the american political system to make that much more difficult? >> a lot of it comes down to a question of emphasis. i am sure that chase gets asked a lot that question of could reagan get elected in today's republican party, which people talk about a lot as sort of this idea that there are so many purists in today's republican party that even
ronald reagan is an ideologically -- is not ideologically pure enough. my own feeling on that, and this is something i try and describe, is reagan is incredibly good at figuring out exactly where east to be as a conservative to get elected. the difference -- and this is what made reagan an effective political leader starting in the 60's is at the same time as he is focused on what he has to do to win the support of his fellow conservatives, he is always asking himself how we sell this to a broader and broader audience. it starts really growing his political career. involved in the 1964 goldwater campaign against johnson, co-chair in the california campaign, and california was, of course, an important state in the 1964 presidential primaries where there was this sort of final, definitive showdown
between goldwater and nelson rockefeller to be the republican nominee. and it is a bloody fight. and after they finish that campaign their is a victory party for goldwater. reagan stands of and says, now let's go make love to democrats. we don't want to win a convention. we want to win an election. he gets booed in the room for saying that, but it was always where his focus is, how do we sell this message to has brought a group as possible. i think today in a fractionalized universe, that set of questions is one that politicians do not really have to ask themselves. and in thinking that through, how do we bring in as many people on board with these ideas as possible. that will force you to come to the more important questions of how to create a broader governing coalition.
how will we make things happen today? >> one way is for my fellow republicans to stop saying they are admirers of ron reagan and start acting like ronald reagan. what i mean by that is any number of practicing politicians today will tell you with sincerity that ronald reagan is there idol, absolute model in terms of politics. except insofar as what they do and say is not the least bit like ronald reagan. let me identify just some of those qualities that i am talking about. one, ronald reagan did have a positive vision for the future. it was positive, for creating prosperity through a reduced government footprint in the lives and businesses of people. there was not recrimination
against the enemy. far too many of today's politicians are highly negative. is sufficient just to be against barack obama and his policies. i believe that might help of republicans were in the midterm elections this year, but the republican party had better start having a very positive agenda, like ronald reagan, or it will find itself with not much to say as people recognize that perhaps obama is going to be out the door in january january 2017. another thing that reagan did so beautifully was to work across the aisle. his famous whiskey drinks with chip o'neal in the after-hours are the best but not the only example of his belief that you have to work with the opposition, as he had to do as governor of california. today just being seen in the proximity of the opposition is thought by either party
to be and worse would be reagan's belief in compromise. he had his firm set of principles, but to have a principle was what you build upon. what you build up live from there was a matter of give-and-take, working with the opposition, which he did in those sessions with jim o'neill and others. today the notion is that if you deviate at all from what some people consider to be the principal, the bedrock, the governing idea, then you are a trader to the cause. people who believe that say that they are like ronald reagan, then they imagine a round reagan never was. the final thing i might add is the difference between reagan and those who are today his professed airs is that ronald reagan had an immense and effective sense of humor which she used as a very effective tool against the opposition. today's issues are gramm and serious and dreadful.
they were not so cheery back in the 1970's either, but reagan was able to use humor in a way that today is somehow dismissed as trivializing serious things. >> if i could follow up on that last point, one of the striking things to me about reagan is the fact that he did conservatism, friendly face. barry goldwater did not have an observable sense of humor . it strikes me -- i don't know if a default setting for conservatives may be just in the nature of conservatives in the united states that they tend to do righteous indignation better than they do other martian. -- than they do with emotion
. there was an undercurrent or explicit overcurrent of anger, but reagan took that away. so is reagan may be simply the anomaly among conservatives? and so is barry goldwater more like the conservative mind and maybe we are returning to that win, as jonathan suggested, there was blood on the floor at the convention of 64 among the republicans. are we going to be conservative enough. so is it too much to ask republicans or conservatives to come up with another reagan? is that personality type just really rare? you can see hubert humphrey who does find among liberals, but reagan is almost the if hubert humphrey of conservatives. >> the question is an interesting one. and a lot of ways why
haven't we seen conservatives over the last 50 years in spite of the fact that republicans have this long streak of winning the presidency, why have not been able to put forward what everyone thinks of as the positive governing agenda under a conservative vision? republicans are good at winning election in a year where they're is a strong incumbent -- anti-incumbent sentiment in the country. you know, 2010, it might be this year. but what they have not been able to do is continue on that path of broadening the gain from there because there is no pressure in a way that we talk about politics to present that positive governing agenda. i think the roots of that is
in this time, the mid-1950s, where you see politics starting to be about a contest between one side presenting government as the solution to all problems and the other side which sees government as the problem, as opposed to what had come before, the sense that government should set out to solve the biggest problems and the argument is about the best way to do it. that does not exist in the same way today because they found it very occasionally potent tool of saying we will run against government. >> are conservatives looking in vain for another run reagan? >> i don't have tear tell a great historian, those people, along very rarely. this is a large country. summer is such a leader but
he may be leading a corporation today or even being a university professor the sad thing is the current atmosphere does tend to diminish the interest of younger people to get involved in government, elected government in particular just because it is seen as so unpleasant, so unavailing in terms of being able to actually do something. we live in a time when young people are very much motivated toward public service but it tends to be private nonprofit service or jobs such as in health care or teaching that has maybe less reward but a great deal more satisfaction. so i am an optimist and believe that in this country there is someone out there ready to lead and you can, if not copy of ronald reagan, at least have some of those positive virtues of the leaders that we have all
grown up with who can begin to capture the imagination of people such as with theodore roosevelt and abraham lincoln or franklin roosevelt. >> one of the great things about the texas book festival is audience participation, and i am going to guess that a lot of you were drawn here because of your interest in politics and the sort of things authors have been discussing if any of you have any questions, here is your chance to come up to the microphone and give your best shot at our authors. and please speak into the microphone so everyone here and the c-span audience can hear us. >> can you hear me okay? >> yes. >> i am sitting here listening about conservatives. can i speak about liberal's four minutes? i just read a fantastic book by bill bradley. three-time all-american from princeton, ten years in the nba and also a three term
senator from new jersey. i just read his book. it is awesome. okay? now, my question is, can we reach out, like what bill bradley did, and across the aisle and get republicans and democrats to work together? i mean, this book was phenomenal. you get a little cynical on what it takes to put up big bills through congress today >> let me put the question to our authors. chase, you work in washington when bradley was there. >> when i think about how today's politics, particularly legislative politics resembles the trench warfare of the first world war in which there was a great deal of artillery and a great deal of death but not much for movement, i think of that rather trite
green card comment, let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me. and when somebody from one side of the trench or the other begins to come out of some form of courage reach out and begin to work across the aisle then that might just come on. it will particularly catch on when people realize that they can do that and survive a primary, be read elected and perhaps get things done. i am confident enough that the majority of the american public, the vast majority want their elected officials to get the job done, whatever that job is. they want them on the job making a difference rather than just making speeches. >> it is possible to be too hard on our current leaders. having spent a lot of time thinking about lyndon
johnson you often come across people who say particularly talking about the current president if only he could be more like lyndon johnson, someone who was just relentless in his reaching out to legislators in both parties and around the clock overwhelming personality be would not have any of the problems that we have today in terms of getting something done. i cannot think that is true. when you talk about the mid 1960's and that phenomenal legislative record, yes, lyndon johnson and his formidable personality and legislative presence as an important piece, but the most important piece is the progressive majority that lyndon johnson had in congress. and when that progress a majority starts to crack, aftermath of the civil rights legislation, he loses a lot of the power that he had. if you look at the comparable moment in the johnson presidency which in a lot of ways is a midterm election of 1966, people
were talking about lyndon johnson as this guy who was detached and all of the energy has drained out of his presidency. you know, concentrating on a foreign conflict and not giving, you know, adequate resources to vietnam. all of these things that people say about president obama today. so it is as much about the political moment in understanding where the country is. >> next question. [inaudible question] >> simply delayed the reagan revolution or permanently derailed it an entirely reshape the way the republican party move forward through the 80's? >> my sense is that it would have delayed in that you recall crawl reagan in the
republican primaries in convention came very close. and it was clear that the functional majority of that convention wanted ronald reagan and would have him, as, indeed, they did. i tend to think that it would have been a delay given the cycles of american politics if reagan had been elected in his own right and would have come up against all of the economic and foreign-policy problems that hit jimmy carter during the late 70's and, perhaps, that would have helped power a democratic victory in 1980. it is a game anyone could play, but i can see that happening as much as the eventual election of ronald reagan in the 1980's. >> i will mention something that might shed a little bit of light on this. james baker who work for george bush and ronald reagan and george bush again said that it was his thought -- and he said mr. reagan when reagan was in the white house. he said that if reagan had not challenged ford in '76,
then ford might well have won the 76 election, and if he had, and reagan never would have been president. because if a republican had one in 76, let's say ford, he would not have been challenged by another republican. so reagan would have had to wait until 1984, by which time he would clearly have been too old to run for president. so that is james baker's take on that subject. next question. [inaudible question] >> about 30 years. [laughter] my question is this. you have not addressed the changes in the media over the years. the other question is, you know the bushes, is jeb bush going to run? [laughter] >> i tell you what, i was put that into two parts. i will let jonathan deal with the media question, and i will let chase weigh in on whether jeb bush is going to run.
>> we talked a lot about how the media is so much tougher on president today than the media was back in the days, often private lives and sex scandals and that sort of stuff. and that is true, but if you spend a lot of time looking at the way that the press wrote about lyndon johnson in the 1960's, they were not exactly easy on him. johnson felt and with good reason that is eastern ivy league in funds press corps looked down on him as a crass texan. there were really quite unfair to him. they constantly would bring in these sort of completely overused cliches to describe him as this sort of larger
than life figure in a 10-gallon hat. he was a texan, but a creature of washington first and foremost. you know, you think about that. we just this week have been mourning the passing of ben bradley who, of course, was the legendary editor of the "washington post" during the watergate era who died this week at the age of 93. and the famous story about bradley and johnson comes from bradley got a tip that lyndon johnson was going to replace j. edgar hoover as the director of the fbi, which was an amazing story, if true, because no president had dared to go up against j. edgar hoover at that point in over 30 years. bradley reported it out and found out that it was, in fact, the case. he published it. johnson found out, and just like ben bradlee and the idea that his administration
was leaking to the east and influence press corps so much that he holds an impromptu press conference and announcing -- announces that he is appointing j. edgar hoover director for life. and as he is stepping down peace says, tell bradley i said forget you, except he did not use the words forget. [laughter] so it was always a little tough. >> what is the future of republican politics? >> i was a practicing journalist working for the houston chronicle. so i am going to jump in to this answer to say that, of course, the 24 hour news cycle, instantaneous communication affect our politics to a degree unknown in past times if only because the expectation of
that news cycle is that public officials are immediately, instantaneously weiss with regard to what is happening at all and what to do about it. no human being is capable of doing that. in past times when communication was much slower public officials did have the luxury of thinking were discussing these matters before they spoke and acted. that is a luxury not allowed today, and it is an egg that cannot be unscrambled. and that, i can say with some certainty. i cannot speak with certainty about what jeb bush will do. this is his last best opportunity to run. i hope he does. that should not surprise anybody. he is a man of great capability who has knowledge and a sense of that this country needs, but what strikes me is that very few people whose names are being
mentioned to have executive experience, and this is another trait of ronald reagan that we cannot forget he came to the presidency having been governor of the big state and having to deal with budgets and personnel and judicial appointments and dealing with the legislature, and that did prepare him in a way that, frankly, very few of our current crop of candidates have in their arsenal. >> another question. [inaudible question] >> talks about but lbj and reagan. it didn't lbj and reagan both make a mess of the united states budget? and here is why i suggest that. lbj, his last year, our real problem with the vietnam war he basically took away the income he had from social
security. social security, the problem is that social security. he took that away and all of a sudden his deficits were going in to what they called surpluses in 1968. now, reagan was also running into a problem where deficits in the 80's -- and i forget what year it was, but he looked for more social security that could be taken at of the budget. -- >> secretary my question. >> i will let you take on as much as you want. it's an interesting point. it is back to this idea of we should not over mothball not -- the causes of these presidents.
pfft -- >> because it's not true. and i think what you see in both the johnson presidency in the 60's and the reagan presidency in the 80's is that certain trepidation about, if you give the public too much reality they will extract a political price. and that has famously happened in the johnson presidency in the 1950's. their is a sense that johnson cannot level with the public about the sacrifices that are necessary to fight this war in vietnam. he worries that all of his political support on the left will disappear and he will be vulnerable from the right to people who are saying he is tough on communism, but what i think uc particularly in the earliest moments of the johnson presidency is that the public is capable of a lot more sophistication and understanding than politicians ever give them
credit for. in the first hours of lyndon johnson's presidency when he is faced with this monumental task of moving the country forward after the death of john f. kennedy and really this sort of awkward moment of how we honor this fallen president while still getting back to life, and johnson is able to say to the country, look, to honor kennedy would need to pass the kennedy program and do all of these important things he set out to do, and the country rises to the challenge and get behind this idea of moving on and do big things. if we had more politicians do that today, the idea that the public can take a certain amount of complexity and will forgive you if your honest with them. we would have better results. we do not need a mythical political force to emerge. >> do you agree that the public can handle more complexity than politicians give them credit for? >> i certainly do, and that
is why i the analogy i used to go, a critical mass of people in the congress are willing to break away from the president and work together on common issues, they will find a majority. let me speak with regard to the deficits of the reagan administration. this is much more nuanced on both the left and right. ronald reagan was always for reducing the budget and ideally getting rid of budget deficits, but he recognized in the context of his administration that it was worthwhile incurring a deficit, if it meant the buildup of the defense forces at the time and the toppling of the soviet union or more specifically convincing the soviet union that it could not possibly keep up with an american and was willing to make those expenses. this was misinterpreted, i think, in later times by certain republicans who felt
that, as the phrase was, ronald reagan proved deficits to not matter. that was not the case, but he was willing to enter the deficit temporarily. during his administration he was most happy to sign legislation which began to put caps on spending when coupled with the tax increases that his successor was courageous enough to implement did lead to eventual budget surpluses in the 1990's when, unfortunately, it fell to the credit of bill clinton. but all of that began with the reagan administration. >> another question. [inaudible question] >> jonathan.
>> i think that if you were going to pick a president to figure out, lyndon johnson would be your guide. i mean, he is really just perceptive. their is a famous story that larry o'brien, a kennedy aide and became johnson's chief legislative strategist told about one night when they were -- there were up on capitol hill trying to pass a bill. he was trying to bring it home for the white house, and he came up short. he felt that and procrastinated, spent a couple of hours before reporting back to the white house in the early hours of the morning and finally he goes in and tells president johnson that he has come up short. in johnson's first question is, when did this happen? and he tells him. what did you wake me? and johnson said, when you
are bleeding up on that hill, i want to be bleeding with you. that is what it was about, managing the congress. it becomes a detrimental, but really when you're talking about structural legislative problems, that really is one way in which lyndon johnson was much better positioned than almost any president in modern memory. >> i think we have time for one more question. >> a question for both of you. it when you talk about being less critical of politicians going forward, are you talking about the number of times or just what our criticisms are? >> i think there will always be an abundance of things about which we should be critical of politicians, and certainly when i was talking about before in terms of inflated rhetoric in the sense that the public cannot take reality and truth is something we should ask more of from our politicians and
do it in a concerted fashion. what i was trying to suggest as we hold them to re our standard in terms of understanding with the important issues are going to be in a moment whereas when you look back in history you really see that is beyond their powers of understanding to see. lyndon johnson could never have imagined that ronald reagan would be such a definitive figure in the long term success of the johnson legacy. that is where i would ask we be more charitable. we should hold them to a high standard when talking about what they think and what their ideas are, but we should not necessarily expect them all to be political svengalis. >> to politicians to they deserve credit charity? >> yes. i have given criticism, but i do believe that today's leaders are probably intellectually as capable as any we've ever had.
i do feel cheered by the kind of people running for congress these days you have had direct military experience. as of one generation ago two-thirds of the members of congress had military experience that gave them greater ability to weigh such things as defense budgets and national security issues than their successors in the intervening time who had none of that. today's crop of those will provide a new brand of. too early to say whether out of that will come eisenhowers are reagan's of the future, but it is encouraging. maybe i should say the kennedys and the johnsons and the other democrats who have served in uniform in world war ii. >> a nice concluding note above partisanship. hour or ask you all to join me in a round of applause. first, remember that there will be going to the book signing tent, and you can
"landslide". up next is paul barrett, the offer of "the law of the jungle: the 19$ billion legal battle over oil in the rain forest and the lawyer who'd stop at nothing to win." we will be back shortly with more live coverage from this year's taxes book festival. this is book tv, television for serious readers. [inaudible conversations] >> here is a look at some books being published this week. it
look at the men that came to camp david, an assassin, terrorist leader, and a feeling an unpopular president. it would be hard to imagine three less likely partners for peace. there was one quality they all shared in abundance which was political courage. timing is not everything. it is true that the 1973 yom kippur war shook is roll out of its reverie of dominance and changed the political context, but the attack by sadat only reinforced the need to keep the sinai peninsula as a strategic barrier against the many egyptian army. and in egypt, -- not just in egypt, in the whole arab world sadat was practically
alone in his belief that peace with israel was possible or even desirable. two of his foreign ministers resigned following his trip to jerusalem, and the third resigned at camp david. in fact, the dissent in the egyptian delegation was so great that at one point at four in the morning carter worried that sadat would be murdered by his own delegation at camp david. and they called presents the who will come up and ran around reinforcing security to protect him from his own people. of course eventually it was his own people that killed him. at camp david agreement, i think, was probably his death warrant. carter had his own problems, struggling with a faltering economy, double-digit inflation, the crime rate being 20 percent, revolution
in iran, midterm congressional elections. his political advisers unanimously opposed his quixotic decision to seek peace in the middle east when there was so many pressing problems at home. finally, america plays a crucial role. egypt and israel simply could not make peace by themselves. so after the fifth day carter did something he really did not want to do. he decided to create an american plan. there was already prospective plan in the works, but he made america a full partner to the negotiations. he made it clear to both men that their relationship with the united states was on the line. >> you can watch this and other programs online at booktv.org. >> book tv asked bookstores and libraries throughout the country about the nonfiction
you can visit the bookstore in an north carolina or on line. [inaudible conversations] >> well, that tent is filling up for another author talk from the 19th annual texas book festival. live coverage from austin will continue right after this. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
>> here is some of the latest news about the publishing industry. the "washington post" reports the cia took issue with the contents of former director leon panetta's memoir and that he allowed the publisher to start editing the book before receiving final approval from the agency. book publisher simon and schuster has agreed on a multi-year deal with amazon over the pricing and profit margins of books. the new york times reports that simon and schuster with limited exceptions will control the-book pricing. and former "washington post" editor ben bradlee died at the age of 93. he oversaw watergate coverage and was author of the mark a good life published in 1995. stay up-to-date on news about the publishing world by like an on facebook at facebook.com/booktv or follow us on twitter @booktv you can also visit our
website, booktv.org, and click on news about books. >> in one sense the book is sports history. i love sports. the tampa bay raise baseball team getting a chance to write about the athletic side of the story. but i did not intend this to be something that appeals to sports fans. he does not define himself as an athlete, and this book is much more than a sports book in my mind. i start the book with a quotation from martin luther king, a letter from a birmingham jail intended to be a signal to the reader that they will get into something as much about civil rights of sports. when you read the book you
will see that it intersects with several key moments and figures in the civil rights movement. he was a kindergartner starting school in 1954, profoundly influenced by murder as a child, 12 years old leaving his house to watch this ends just a few blocks away. he entered high school a week after martin luther king's i have a dream speech and was in school when the civil rights act and voting rights act was passed. he told me it felt like for ian and members of his generation the world seemed to be opening up a just the right time. his parents and teachers have prepared to walk through doors that had never been open for. meanwhile, things are finally starting to change. professor bell can probably talk about this better than i can, but back in 1960 at
the same ends, reading them was laughlin. the reaction from the administration at vanderbilt when they learned of his role was to expel him from the university which was probably the low point in the history of the school. in reaction to that they brought on a much more progressive chancellor who understood that race was a central question for the country and understood that the outside will that athletics place in american society, if they recruited enough athletes it would send a signal that things are changing at vanderbilt. he told the basketball coach that he wanted them to do it . the president of the university of kentucky issued the same request. but just because band above wanted an outstanding
student and phenomenal basketball player did not mean that he wanted to go to vanderbilt. his whole life he wanted to get out of segregation. he saw a basketball as a way to do that and was recruited by a school in the big ten, the pac-10 110, michigan, iowa, wisconsin, but on his recruiting trips to many of these schools were he was offered cash and cars and town houses he also saw that most of the student athletes, especially the african-american students athletes were not encouraged to go to class but just being used for academic ability of athletic ability. and that is not in the west. he wanted to a play college basketball and get egg great education. he saw that the players are going to class and there was an outstanding engineering department. it was not because he would be a pioneer and make
history, it was in spite of it. >> you can watch this and other programs online at booktv.org. [inaudible conversations] >> of 38 latest book "the law of the jungle" tells the story of a lawyer who brought a class action lawsuit against an oil giant up next life at the 2014 texas book festival in austin . [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] ..
[applause] >> i think maybe the easiest thing to do is start from the end and work back. not a very end but in 2011, there was a judgment rendered by an ecuadorean court relating to contamination of the rain forest by texaco in the amount of $19 billion. that is with the beat, billion. why don't you tell us a little bit about how it came to be that the lawsuit was filed to begin with and we will try to get some details. >> extraordinary judgment which came down in a rain forest court room in a region called the orient to the east of the andes
mountains in ecuador, stemmed from activity in the 60s 70s and 80s by texaco, chevron inherited the case when it acquired texaco in 2001. ecuador had invited texaco to come to the country to exploit the vast oil resources of the rain forest. texaco did so, signed contract with success of the ecuadorean government and produce the tremendous amount of oil. this was a boon to 6 ago and ecuador in terms of its economy overall, it provided a great deal of wealth. unfortunately for ecuador's forest presidents it was not a boom. economic inequality recent during this period, got -- the poor people got poorer and the poor people who live near the oil operations in the rain forest at worst of all because they suffered the tremendous environmental side effects of the industrialization of the amazon.
texaco was kicked out of the country in the 1990s when ecuador nationalize its industry and in 1993 a lawsuit was started in new york by american lawyers representing the presidents of the rain forest against texaco. that lawsuits all those years over out of the courts in new york down to the courts in ecuador and resulted in that extraordinary $19 billion judgment to. that is where it begins. texaco'stexaco's operations in lorayne forest, we were familiar with exploration and production operations in the united states where there are holding pitts and so forth that must be lined and that sort of thing. what was the allegation, what were the allegations about
texaco's wrongdoing, >> they are more than allegations. having examined this case closely for a number of years my assessment is texaco conducted itself egregiously. there was terrible corporate misconduct in the 70s and 80s, the sort of conduct that would never be accepted in this country today. you mentioned waste oil pits, the olympic swimming pool size hits that i dug a joyce into drilling platforms in to which the toxic byproduct in the drilling process are put. texaco doug hundreds of these pitts. it considered the proposition of lining them with concrete so the toxins would not reach out. memos were exchanged with in the company. price was put on the whining process of $4 million and let's not do that. must not spend the $4 million because no one--ecuador doesn't care so we won't do it.
another example of texaco's misconduct was the production water, vast volumes of water that come up -- do something with that water. it is tainted with exposure to petroleum, natural reoccurring salt, arson nick, you have to treat it or reinject it into the now empty reserves. what texaco said was discharged, billions of gallons with production water into the streams and rivers from which the local residents drew their drinking water. where they fished they based their children. the beginning of this story is corporate misconduct it is more than allegations. it is at this point -- hard to define as fact. >> jumping forward, has judgment been paid, as chevron paid the judgment? >> the one word answer is no. the next question is why?
chevron is in position to say we won't pay this judgment in ecuador and you can't enforce it in ecuador because we have no assets in ecuador. this is not an uncommon situation. winning a lawsuit and holding a paper judgment doesn't mean if you get cash one day, often a defendant will continue to defy the winning party and say come and get my stuff. if there are no assets in the jurisdiction there is nothing for the winning plaintiffs to do but chevron has more than defiance on its side because the story i began to talk about in the 70s and 80s grew more complicated over time. in the 1990s when chevron let the country--it struck a cleanup deal with the ecuadorean side. under that deal, texaco agreed to clean up 1-third of the pollution sites.
the government of ecuador operating through its national oil companies agreed to clean up two thirds of the pollution sites. why the division? that reflected the ownership division of the joint consortium. is important to remember this was ecuador's oil primarily. this was happening in ecuador. the ecuadorian government had an ownership and responsibility for what was going on and took their responsibility in its contract and in exchange for this contract which texaco executed and spend some money, $40 million, to clean up some of the sites ecuador granted texaco liability release. ecuador said to texaco you have done your responsibility, you may not leave our country. chevron is saying there may be pollution but it is not our responsibility anymore. moreover after texaco left the national oil company took over the same oil site and sad to say became every bit as bad a
polluter as the oil company had. for years and years the ecuadorean swears themselves laying over additional pollution and now having been sued in court chevron says we can't sort out whose pollution is whose and it is not our responsibility. >> you mentioned people representing these indigenous presidents of the rain forest filed suit in new york and federal court, and the federal judge in new york was inclined to dismiss the case based on grounds we don't want to get too deegan the weeds about. >> i can state it quickly. texaco said this is the wrong place to have this fight. it deserves to happen anywhere and should happen in ecuador.
ecuadorian courts are perfectly fine and the u.s. courts agreed to dismiss the case and texaco got what it wished for and it turned out they should be careful what they wished for. >> why don't you give us some of the main players in this drama, obviously the lead figure in your book is the plaintiff's lawyer from new york city but why don't you give us a rundown of the cast of characters here. >> 2. the main protagonist for better or worse is charismatic, energetic. he started as the most junior lawyer in 1993, and rose to be the predominant lawyer, he was a graduate of harvard law school,
a classmate of a gentleman named barack obama. he had worked for several years before law school as a journalist in nicaragua covering the nicaraguan civil war. he had tremendous personal interest in latin america, still spanish and when this took shape in 1993 he was introduced to the original lawyer who brought in by another law school classmate who was the son of the original plaintiffs's lawyer and he found the cause he had been looking for. she was idealistic, ambitious, self involved and this case came to capture his imagination. on the other side was first texaco and now chevron, massive oil company, chevron is the second-biggest oil company in this country represented by a failing executive and lawyers and this was exactly the confrontation he wanted to have. you wanted to show the big oil company would be held accountable. the problem was in trying to
enforce the rule of law the undermined the rule of law. >> you have indicated that chevron has not paid the judgment. on the other hand it was chevron who asked the federal judge in new york to send him to ecuador to begin with. what was it about the ecuadorean system of justice that turned out not to be to chevron's liking? >> the oil company assumed cynically that if this case was dismissed in the united states it would never resurface in ecuador's practical matter. they base this on several assumptions. ecuador's politics for some historical right meaning and they figured if some legal action restarted in ecuador, a
large corporation would be in a safe position facing off against poor farmers and tribe members, and the ecuadorean judiciary did not have a mechanism for class-action lawsuits as we did in this country at that time and they're out of steam psychologically and each of these grounds the oil company miscalculated. in the united states, nine years they were fighting over where to have a fight. ecuador's politics were shifting sharply from right to left by 2006, ecuador had elected its current president, a left-wing populist who modeled himself on hugo chavez of venezuela. suddenly the political environment changed entirely. miscalculation number one. number 2 was as the case was pending in the united saints have the plaintiffs' lawyers were down consulting with ecuadorian lawmakers on how to
draft the statutes that would allow for class-action lawsuit. that statute was enacted in 1999 so suddenly with the oil company oblivious to this development there was the vehicle to bring a massive lawsuit in ecuador. they miscalculated by not understanding this relatively young and inexperienced lawyer was coming to the floor, taking control of the lawsuit. he was someone -- you encounter people like this from time to time, exceptional people with an energy level, a commitment level and perhaps a value system that allows them to go beyond what the ordinary reasonable person might do. suddenly down in ecuador this unlikely situation where chevron begins to be on the defensive and the ecuadorean colleagues are outflanking the powerful weapons. >> you mentioned president korea. give us an idea how he, after he
was elected, injected himself in this dispute. >> the lawsuit from the start of his administration became one of the central symbols of his presidency and of ecuadorean politics. populism runs very deep in latin american politics generally, especially in ecuador, the argument that most if not all economic and social problems in ecuadorean society are the cause, are caused by outside forces, usually by implication in modern times the united states, and by large corporations it is a very powerful argument, very powerful rhetorical thrust and he made this one of the central themes of his administration. and broadcast efforts have to
play, and preaching against chevron by name. because this kind of rhetoric resonates. in 2011, the judicial system under sway, and when it came to. >> there was a judge who apparently, rotate and not have a different judge next year, then you had this year. six judges over that time from 2005 to 2011 a eight years, six trial judges. and mr. danziger, a highly focused megalomaniac
narcissistic, etc.. with respect specifically to the judge, tell us how mr. done digger --danziger expressed and selfless >> one of the outlying legal tactics he employed was as opposed to addressing the judge in the formal setting of the court room, he made this progress tests in regular touch with the judges privately socializing, drinking with them, and so forth. at various points he used leverage he was able to get the judge to do what he wanted him to do. which is not something you would do if not openly in this country. in one instance there was a
judge who had difficulties at the court house because he was accused of sexual related improprieties and harassment and his career was in peril. he and his colleagues let the judge know that he had an option. he filed a complaint in office, and evidence gathering procedure that would favor them, and sure enough he went along with it. this is the hardball tactics danziger thought was necessary. if you view it from afar, from the prison of american legal standards you would actually call that something like last minute. >> you might briefly -- most of us are familiar with trying nick case to a judge and jury, and
ecuadorian procedure under ecuadorean procedure you might explain briefly what the procedure was and why it was taking so long and what they extorted on the judge. >> in ecuador, you have to set aside how a court works. different from top to bottom. in legal terms rather than an adversarial system and civil law system and the judge has more control and litigants are not so much constantly skirmishing with one another but the judge is directing them to provide information, in ecuador, there is a week-long presentation of arguments of evidence in the court room and then the entire court adjourns for what they called judicial inspections, the court picks up physically, and
canvas tents plastic chairs, army troops with automatic weapons, police, indians, scientists are wandering around samples. it is an extraordinary scene. that went on for some years the from the plaintiff's point of view the difficulty is not the no pollution would found, there was plenty of pollution to be found buttressing to a particular source, and whether texaco -- the responsibility -- in that process, it was when that process was producing this source of irreconcilable mass of conflicting evidence that danziger and his colleagues put pressure on the judge to change
to a different process. a court appointed single expert who will sort out all the evidence in terms of the judge and say judge, in my independent opinion these at the facts. now you decide what to do with them. the problem is after pressuring the judge to shift to a special master process danziger privately and secretly recruited the special master, promised to do all his work for him and secretly paid him. the special master's and went through a kind of a share raid of gathering evidence while danziger's u.s.-based scientific experts goes through multi thousand page report on what damages are. it was translated into spanish and and that your edited it. your honor, here's the report, it is purely my independent work. the debate is being corrupted.
>> what was the bottom line of fire will calling the cabrera reports if you are ok with that. cabrera was with a phony special master. what was the bottom line? >> surprisingly was favorable to the premise. >> favorable to the plaintiffs. >> the bottom line was the damage caused exclusively by texaco in the 70s and 80s required $27 billion to be remedied. from there the judge came to a slightly lower amount, that is what the brat's conclusion was. >> there are standards of conduct particularly, and proceedings that differ from
state to state, and what was it by american standards that danziger did wrong. >> coerce judges, ultimately from an american point of view participated in the drafting in the $19 billion judgment in exchange for a promise to the judge, $500,000 for additional recovery. and not so minor infractions. >> pretty soon to point out that these are not just my findings that get to the fact that all those determinations have actually been made by a federal court but we will get there i am
sure. >> that was going to be my next question. the chairman has not paid the $19 billion or any part of it. so tell us what chevron did in response to the delivery of that judgment. >> chevron was not satisfied with the standard response of a corporate defendant, which would defy a judgment to disagrees with and resist in all possible ways of repaying it. chevron undertook the famous football strategy of the best defense is a good offense. keep the defense off the field. chevron began investigating danziger personally and his tactics in ecuador something that we have been discussing. with the ecuadorean verdict in 2011, chevron sued danziger personally in new york, and his clients under the u.s. anti
racketeering law. chevron's allegation was what may have been a legitimate environmental lawsuit combined with a public media campaign all the way back in 1993, over time evolves into an extortion conspiracy with the rain forest victims now as the villains, led by their lawyers, and the oil company of all characters in the world, the multinational oil company as the victim. that losses, proceeded in federal court to six week trial in 2015 and in march of this year, judge lewis kaplan, a federal judge in new york, ruled the $19 billion judgment was a complete sham, danziger was liable under the racketeering
law and asia -- his clients may benefit from their ill-gotten verdict in ecuador. >> for the purposes of discussion, here danziger is in ecuador in a jurisdiction where having conversations with the judge on the site is accepted and something that the oil company lawyers engage in as well and the judgment was rendered, rightly or wrongly but under ecuadorean law the judgment is valid. >> not only valid but held by the ecuadorian supreme court so what you are saying has a lot of force behind it. >> so what is -- why is it fair to impose on not just danziger that the indigenous residents of the rain forest who suffered the damage.
why is it fair to impose all of a sudden american standards of conduct on them? >> that is a valid question ended is given even more force when you have the observation that in the 1990s the oil company said we don't want the equities here. the right and wrong what happened in the rain forest sorted out in the united states. we wanted sorted out in ecuador. sure enough the dispute went down to ecuador for. it was sorted out and now that it has been sorted out, we want to come back to the united states to make sure everything is fine. is there hypocrisy on both sides? absolutely. that said, lawsuits are not actually thought out as broad efforts to determine whether anyone is hypocritical or as complete integrity. they are relatively narrow sets of allegations that have to be responded to medicine the narrowly beat you can't just wave your hand and say this is
all unfair. you have to be more specific. the lawsuit chevron brought didn't go to the pollution in ecuador. it didn't go to the larger irony of an oil company choosing its venue. it said something relatively narrow. it said this lawyer who is based in new york and whose finance years and other colleagues are based in the united states operated an enterprise that over time violated the u.s. mail fraud law. the u. s. wire fraud law. the u.s. -- the u.s. foreign corrupt practices act. a u.s. law that bans business people in this country and lawyers to accomplish their business end so the judge said there is pollution in ecuador. a lot of bad stuff happened. the case that has been brought of me is this particular lawsuit
evolve into a racketeering enterprise in one jurisdiction. >> the end results is to prohibit any recovery in the judgment, the next sort of obvious question is major oil companies that spend $500 million in attorneys' fees fighting this. you have danziger has broken all the rules in securing the relief. so the only people left holding the bag at least superficially are the people who suffered the damage, illness, etc.. >> i couldn't agree with you more. i take a word search superficially and say profoundly. that is the tragedy of the case. the larger tragedy of the case
is the very cause, the very tools of using international litigation to vindicate the rights of poor people in a distant land allegedly wronged by on major u.s. corporations that message has been discredited more broadly beyond this case and that is a terrible legacy from this case. however, there is a way to grow towards a better solution and that patch has actually begun to be set up. in the appeal of the racketeering perfect. the verdict begins, danziger, the one that found him to the racketeer has been appealed. he has appealed with the federal appeals court in new york. he has his own lawyer who is making arguments on his behalf. his clients have their own lawyer because as you suggested, his client's interests are potentially at odds with their own lawyers and there is a valid
common sense argument. whatever ms. behavior there was on the part of the lawyers the unsophisticated client, the victim, should not be punished for that. you can argue that in different ways that it is a plausible argument. there is the new lawyer making that argument on behalf of the ecuadorean. he happens to be a very well-known human rights lawyer a professor at nyu law school, taking this case unlike danziger, pro bono, doing it for free and his argument to the second circuit is whatever you deem appropriate to do to this plaintiff's lawyer you have got to figure out some ready for the people on whose behalf the suit was originally filed and he has dropped a fascinating footnotes in his brief and that footnotes, for the law review article you wrote last year, in which he
suggested that the way to resolve the mess in ecuador, this was before he was an active lawyer, he was doing it as a scholar was to displace the litigation process and put in place some kind of foundation or neutral institutions that would distribute money that could be contributed by chevron and the government of ecuador to actually get the pollution cleaned up and used as a precedent. only a guy like this would make an intellectual leap like this, he uses the president and earlier litigation he participated in which was thousands of lawsuits that were filed against german companies that had used slave labor during the nazi era. those companies were sued by hundreds of thousands of holocaust survivors and their families. the german companies refuse to do business with american plaintiff lawyers and the case was resolved by setting aside the litigation process, creating a by national foundation into
which the german companies were willing to contribute some money because the money was not going to the plaintiffs's lawyers and professors knewboren is suggesting that provides a model for result in all this. that is a proposal that deserves a lot of attention. [applause] >> defeat wouif people would li questions -- >> even if danziger hadn't been corrupt, my question is how was he going to get around the release the ecuadorian government had signed releasing chevron of all liability?
>> chevron of course could not agree with you more and danziger's argument is twofold. the release was obtained correctly. everything that was done before the lawsuit was filed was a product of corruption and texaco's manipulation. secondly, he argued that the terms of the release did not cover a private lawsuit. it only covered a government action. chevron disagrees, etc.. >> i hope most of what you said is in your book. i hope most of what you said it is in your book. >> most of what i said is in my book. >> i didn't get all the notes. if you could enlighten us as to what lessons can be learned for
the current problems we have related to talk sands. >> excellent question. lessons to be learned. lesson number one. corporations ought to be a of themselves if not for moral and ethical it reasons but for the self-interest of the corporation and the interests of their shareholders. if texaco back in the 1970s and 1980s had taken relatively inexpensive preventive steps, it would have saved-shareholders of the oil company, texaco and chevron perhaps what i calculate roughly to be $1 billion in legal expenses in the 1990s so you don't have to be a saint to say line the oil pits, you have to be a hardheaded corporate leader. lesson number 2. a host country like ecuador which invites an outside company to exploit its natural resources has to take vigilant responsibility for regulating
and determining how that exploitation is done particularly well as in this case the vast majority of proceeds from the activity remain in ecuador. they were not taken out by texaco. they remained in ecuador. ecuador sold most of the oil itself. the third lesson is if you file a righteous lawsuit, if you are going to use the rule of law to hold corporate power accountable you must follow the rule of law yourself. your mother taught you this, suite 2 wrongs don't make a right. >> i am a lawyer in new york and texas. the legal profession does a horrible job policing attorneys. what have they done about mr. danziger's law license? >> he is a member of the bar of the great state of new york in good standing. let me finish. i believe that if the racketeering judgment against him is up held in total or in
part, it is fairly predictable the bar of authorities would begin looking at the legitimacy of his law license. >> the investigation or anything? >> bar authorities don't conduct investigations openly or say we are investigating somebody. they tend to open a file privately and when they take action they announce it but so far he is a lawyer in good standing. he has denied wrongdoing and is appealing the finding against him and as far as he is concerned he is a righteous lawyer afflicted and oppressed by a large oil corporation. >> new york city bar is the one who pulled richard nixon's law license. >> are there other questions? >> in your humble opinion who is the worst actor? danziger, the oil companies or ecuador or is it a tie? >> i don't think -- this is a
cautionary story with a number of native plant villains. a lotand villains. a lot of victims as well. any lawyer of substance who worked with danziger has fallen away from the case. several accused him of deception and fraud. a number of lawyers stepped away quickly. they got involved. to with of what was going on and that i want no part of it. those are lawyers to behave ethically as far as they went but whether they should have blown the whistle more loudly is another question but i almost think there is little to be >> reporter: in trying to compare the environmental degradation with texaco in the 1970s still legal and ethical degradations of danziger in the
2,000s. you can rank them. i told the stories. >> is there an unsung hero anywhere to be found? >> i don't see an unsung hero. it is a dark story. >> i have one question. the more colorful issues here where gander, when you bribe a judge or pay off an expert, you don't do it, you do it in secret. >> how did this come to light? >> exactly. >> among his skills danziger is an extraordinary me at and celebrity impresario. part of the way he raised money for this case overtime was by getting a lot of celebrity backing and a tremendous amount of sympathetic media all of which is fine as far as it goes but he took it too far as he tended to take everything too far. one of the things he did was
arranged for the making of a documentary film about his lawsuit and that american documentary film maker following him around, a famous documentary named joe berringer, that debuted in sundance, robert redford was applauding in the audience. sting, the rock superstar and his wife, the movie producer trudy styler were on the dais, truly -- judy was a star, they urged people to contribute. over two years, the moviemakers follow him around as recorded everything he said and did including things he said and did with his clients in private. eventually when chevron decided turn the tables they demanded to see the out takes, the field tapes from that movie, some 600 hours of raw footage which eventually the federal judge in new york said they couldn't see. that opened the door to his misconduct, influence the judge
to order that all of danziger's files be turned over to chevron and open up the records that allowed chevron to bring the lawsuit and frankly me to write this book. the reason i can describe what he said and did in real time and even what he was writing himself about what he said and did in e-mails to his colleagues and notes to his wife and so forth is because he created this record and lost control of its through his own hubris of becoming a movie star in his own movie. >> that movie is available on netflix. it is called crude. >> yes. >> read the book. but you can't watch the movie too. >> there are some other lawyers that got a whistle of what was going on and stepped away quickly. where there others who didn't quite step away? >> yes.
>> can you describe what happened to those lawyers or what was involved? >> it would take a long time to get a complete rundown but i will mention a few. the law firm that originally backed the case, the first $7 million bringing the case was a traditional plaintiff's law firm who treated the case as a much more conventional ventures and danziger. eventually ease they had a falling out with him when they got the sense he was conducting the case in ecuador in an unethical fashion and they had a complete falling out, away from the case, wrote off their $7 million and joe cronin has filed a lawsuit against danziger in state court in pennsylvania which would get activated once the rico case gets resolved and he will try to get his $7 million back. he felt he was left in the lurch by danziger. chevron brought a great deal of pressure say we will put you in
the same boat unless you step away and another lawyer took a different approach, a well-known litigator in new york who danziger invited to help him with defending against chevron's counteroffensive. he was in the case for a few months, felt he was being lied to and withdrew and stepped away quickly. testified as to why he did that. he was very forthcoming and made a comment in his testimony is that i thought was very telling. he was asked was very legitimate lawsuits in the beginning? he said the tragedy was we will never know because all the corruption that happened after the fact, we will never know how good a lawsuit there was to begin with? >> one more.
>> great. [inaudible] >> created can actually be cleaned up? >> what can be cleaned up now? if you go to the oil region of the orient today, you see a scene that would remind many people in this audience who might be more familiar with this than most, might remind you of gulf coast texas louisiana circa 1950s or 60s. it is kind of a mess but it is not irredeemable and i think with the expenditure of some hundreds of millions of dollars, waste oil pits that nestle sitting on line and uncovered could be drained and cleansed and remediator. we have the technology to do that. streams that are contaminated, scientific work could be done to determine where the source of
contamination is. cut the source of contamination of and the streams would be purified. most immediately what could be done is with relatively modest numbers of millions of dollars you could build medical clinics in hamlets where there are no doctors or nurses and begin treating people for the diseases and ailments they have, whatever the source of those ailments are. is difficult to trace with scientific certainty the operations of an oil rig over here to someone's ailment of revers. is not a straightforward thing to do but who cares, if they have no medical care, let's build a medical clinic for the man's get the kids going to school. all of those things could be done in relatively straightforward ways if even modest amounts of money by the order of magnitude in this case were collected and spent in a
rational way. >> thank you very much. i would like to remind ian's that paul m. barrett will be -- immediately following this. [applause] >> great speech. >> we have two more events to bring you today. up next political scientist francis fukutyama followed by a columnist for the nation magazine and author of a new book about abortion rights. we will return with more live coverage from the texas book festival at the top of the hour. this is booktv on c-span2.
>> up next to see the full list visit weeklystandard.com/bookshelf. >> my passion really is to bring history to life in ways that are feel and relevant to our lives today. we can't relate to writing a carriage everywhere but we can understand what it is like for our families to be separated from one another by distance. that is what i try to focus on, things we have in common with people who have gone before us. just as a way of mentioning that i worked at the white house for a few years, i was president bush's web master. this was in the era when president clinton was the first president have a web site, the second president, the first time we transition websites from president to president so it was an exciting time. it was before broadband and
smart phones and things like that and technology has changed somewhat since 2001. i had a love for writing before we move to washington d.c. and i have written a book about sam houston and his daughter maggie, my first book. was a children's book but it didn't come out until 2002 when i was working in the white house duquesne imagine the excitement of having your first book in print and i was really sweating it because the night before, i was supposed to leave to go to the texas book festival in austin, going straight from the office to the airport and i didn't have my books yet. i got home and sure enough there was a box of books and i finally had my first copy and i was nervous that wasn't going to have a copy to take to this book festival. i go to the office the next day and the eisenhower executive office building is next door to the west wing, a big victorian
era of building. i was very excited and we will pretend that this is the book. a friend of mine in another office, i walked into the hallway and there was nobody around accept the secret service agent standing to the side with the curlicue court coming out of his ear. they are secret service, they don't stand around inside the building so i thought someone is coming. when you are a white house staffer and the president is walking through, that is not your time to chitchat with him. you are supposed to stand to the side and let him pass. he can smile and wave but you are not supposed to stop him. is an unwritten rule that you figure out pretty quickly. i was really excited about my book and sure enough the doors opened and president bush starts walking straight toward me. without really thinking, i didn't say anything. i just did this. he saw me do this and he came
over and started flipping through the book. i have to make sure he understands this is not about him. this is about sam houston, governor of texas before the civil war. he is flipping through it and then he looks at me and says i need an autograph and i realize he thinks i am giving it to him. i am really not because i needed it to go to austin within a couple hours. what do you do if the president thinks you're giving him a book you better give him the book and so i was so nervous and i said in sir, would you like me to sign this for you now or later? he gave me that puzzled look, he figures out, later. he goes on his merry way and i go on my merry way and i go to austin ended the book festival with my book and when i got back i photocopied the inside cover a couple times in practice what i was going to say to him in the
space that i had and once i had it down i wrote a note and send it to the oval office and got a nice note back from him. >> you can watch this and other programs online at booktv.org. >> booktv asks bookstores and libraries throughout the country about the nonfiction books they are most anticipating being published this fall. here's a look at the titles chosen by square books in oxford, mississippi. first is the biography of thomas stonewall jackson.
that is a look at and nonfiction titles square books is anticipating being published this fall. you can visit the bookstore in oxford, mississippi or online at squarebooks.com. >> you are looking at a live picture from the texas book festival in austin, texas which annually hosts 250 authors and 40,000 attendees. stay tuned for more from boston in a couple minutes. [inaudible conversations] >> the bottom line, i am convinced climate change represents a historic opportunity, a historic opportunity on the scale of the new deal but far more transform
it of and just. as part of a project of getting our e missions down to levels many scientists recommend, we once again have the chance to advance policies that dramatically improve lives, close the gap between rich and poor, create huge numbers of good jobs and reinvigorate democracy from the ground up. rather than the ultimate example of the shock doctrine, my last book, a frenzy of repression, climate change can be a shock, a blow from the low. it can disperse power in the hands of the many rather than consolidating it in the hands of a few and radically expand rather than auctioning it off in peace and where right wing shocked doctors exploiting emergencies both real and manufactured in order to push through policies that make us
even more crisis prone the kinds of transformations would do the exact opposite. they would get to the root of why we are facing see real crises in the first place, psychologically and economically and would leave us with a more habitable climate and the one we are headed for and the more just economy than the one we have right now. underneath it all is the real truth of the we have been avoiding. climate change isn't an issue to add to the list to worry about next to health care and taxes. it is a civilization wake-up call. a powerful message spoken in the language of fires, floods, drought and extinction, telling us that we need an entirely new economic model and a new way of sharing this planet, telling us that we have to evolve.
i call the book this changes everything because if we stay on the road we are on, scientists tell us but not just scientists, some of the most establishment institutions in the world, the world bank, the international energy agency, price waterhouse coopers, tell us we are on a road leading to warming of 4 to 6 degrees celsius and that happens if we do nothing. we don't have to do anything special. just keep on the road we are on. they call it business as usual but it is not business as usual because we have to stay on that road, we have to double down on the dirtiest fossil fuels, the tar sands, natural gas from fracking, mountaintop removal, coal mining. that is the road we are on. that is bad news. if we stay on that road everything changes about our
physical world. 4 to 6 degrees warming celsius is not compatible with anything we understand as an organized society. the models start to breakdown. they don't know what would happen. they don't know how to predict it but they know it is going to involve mass crop failures, huge sea level rise, you know the drill. i am not here to scare you. the good news is there is still time to stop catastrophic warming. we have already locked in a certain amount of warming, we are already experiencing it but it is not too late to lower our emissions in time to avoid those catastrophic outcomes or at least to give ourselves up for good chance. >> you can watch this and other programs online at booktv.org. >> booktv covers hundreds of author programs throughout the country all year long. here is a look at some of the events we will be looking at this week. look for these tear in the future on booktv on c-span2.
monday we are at the john f. kennedy presidential library and museum in boston for historian richard norton smith's recount of the life and political career of nelson rockefeller. the same evening in california's santa barbara constitutional scholar erwin shimerinki let their biases died how the rule. >> that is a look at what booktv
will cover this week. for go to booktv.org and is an upcoming programs. [inaudible conversations] >> we are back from austin, texas with more coverage of the texas book festival. up next, the new book political order and political decay about the development of political institutions since the industrial revolution. [inaudible conversations]
>> thank you so much. thank you so much for being here this afternoon. it is a little warm here in the heart of texas but that is how we like it. we are going to give a warm welcome to dr. fukuyama who came. [applause] >> so happy you could join us today. i have a show here in austin called idea lounge and as you know, he does not need an introduction but i will give him a short introduction. he is a senior fellow at stanford university and he is one of the most respected thinkers in political science today and for the past 25 or 30 years. usually what happens when you are as famous as he is you ride the wave. you don't do good work or
scholarship's. that is not what has happened here. .. apparently took him three months to write this? >> a little longer. >> dr. fukuyama, what is this book about and what exactly is liberal democracy? >> well, the book actually started out as a effort to think through a problem that was created for american foreign policy after september 11th, because in iraq and afghanistan, you had this problem that you
have third radical terrorism movement, islamist movement, that was filling a vacuum that was basically left by a weak state in the case of afghanistan-a state that was always weak in iraq, a formerly strong state that we undermined and left a vacuum. and now isis, the new group in iraq and syria we're now battling, these movements are not inherently that powerful. they have not really shown that they can actually run a modern technological civilization. but they thrive on the fact that everybody around them is still weak, and i think that's why hey expanded into places like africa, mali and cameroon and northern nigeria, these are places that don't have states that can keep order and police and protect their open people, and american foreign policy has
been wrestling with the problem, how do you build a state in a place like afghanistan or iraq where authority has collapsed, and i would say, we still safe not figured out. >> what is it that people don't understand about the protest? >> there's really three central institutions that are necessary. one is the state itself, which is all about power. the ability to protect the community and deliver services. and then there's two others. the second one is law. the rule of law, which constrains the state and forces the state to act according to rules that the community has set. and then there's finally democracy, which is an attempt to force the state to pay attention to the wishes of the whole population, and i think in many indicates the democracy -- many cases the democratic part
of it has gotten ahead of the state-building part and that's been our problem. both democracy in afghanistan and iraq held elections, but what they couldn't do was deal with the problem like corruption, and i think actually today in the world, corruption and utter state failure is really the central problem of politics. >> what about political conditionability and getting everybody involved and engaged? >> i think this is something that happens as societies get richer and have higher levels of education. you have a rising middle class like you do in brazil or turkey or in china, a lot of those people are going to want accountable government because they have property, the government can take it away. that's the condition under which democracy has spread in many parts of the world. so it's a big effort to build political institutions that can
actually accommodate those demands for participation. >> you're speaking about the middle class. aid like to talk about the middle class and its role in democracy, and why it health or disappears is a problem. >> aristotle said this more than two oh thousand years ago, democracy works best in a society if a a broad middle class. the middle class people are educated. they aware of what the government is doing, and they have property, and if the government can take it away through taxation or confiscation, they won't be happen about that. so everywhere the middle class that when support for democracy. that's why in china, for example, the regime will have a big problem because right now there may be 300 million to 400 million chinese that can be classified as middle class.
they're the ones that are texting each other on the chinese equivalent of twitter. they want more freedom, and if dem democracy is going to come to china they'll push for. >> this a classic model under which democracy developed in the past and there are forward main actors. middle class, working class, land owners and the peasant. >> that's right. >> can you give us an overall view of what each of these groups is interested in. so, for example, the middle class wants to protect their own property. are they as interested in political participation? /or income restriction? >> so, this in a way is clear in a place like latin america. venezuela has been subject to this dictatorship of hugo chavez for the last several years, and you see the fact that poor people support him because he is in favor of redistribution,
whereas in that country, most of the middle class actually want property rights because they don't want the government to arbitrarily take things away. then there's an old land-owning class that has been in that part of the world, the bulwark of conservativive. and democracy -- nobody wants to live under tyranny but i think that democracy tends to come with societies that are a little richer, you do have middle class people that have property they want the government protect. >> the large land owners do exist in the world still. >> well there are big problems -- i mean, this is a big problem in why democracy did not arrive for many generations in europe and the 19th 19th century, because in a place like germany or france or russia particularly, you had a big class of land owners, and that is still the problem in place like pakistan. pakistan is virtuety a feudal country in which peasants live
under cerf-like conditions in large estates and that's why democracy doesn't work, it's controlled bay land-owning elite and you won't get successful government in pakistan until there's really something of a social revolution there. >> interesting. so, these four, the peasants can become radicalized quickly. >> that's what happened the chinese and the bolshevik revolution and vietnam. karl marx said it was the industrial proletariat that would be the bearers of revolution, and then it turned out that actually those workers were doing pretty well in europe. they were getting richer and actually becoming middle class, and is why there was never a communist revolution in germany or france or britain. but in russia and vietnam and china, you did have very unequal
societies, and the pass santas formed the backbone of the communist movement. >> there are steps that need to be followed in order to arrive at democracy? can you put the cart before the horse? >> well, i guess it depends on who the who is. because there's nobody that has this olympian fewer say, we're going to -- for example, in east asia, in korea and taiwan, you had a lot of economic growth under an authoritarian regime, and then in the 1980s both country democracyized. and people say this is what the europeans did. you have economic growth and then have democracy later. the fact is if you look around the world, most recently in hong kong, and in brazil and turkey, the arar spring and many other countries, people aren't going to wait. they're unhappy with the quality of government. and so i think democracy in a
sense is a popular grassroots movement that is very, very hard to repress, and ideally in some sense you want to have economic development before democracy but in some countries that not an option. >> let's do a survey. let look at democracies in certain parts of the world. let's look at what is happening in india, compared to japan, tunisia and russia. is that fair? >> that's absolutely fair. those are all very, very different problems in india, just think about this example. in the late 1990s there was an economist named john jez who did a survey of schools in northern india, certain northern indian poor states. he discovered that 50% of school teachers were not showing up to work despite the fact they were getting paid. 50%. and there's a big hugh -- hue and cry. people were outraged. after ten years of reforms they
did another survey and the personal of teachers not showing up for work was exactly the same, 50%. they could not fix this problem. and so india has a free press, parties that contest the government, opposition, it's really a free society, but they cannot deliver these very, very basic services. and i think that why indians voted for the current prime minister because they want a strong leader, they want somebody who can break through the weakness, the state weakness and get something done. japan, on the other hand, i think, is in a certain way like the united states, where it's suffering from a certain degree of political decay. it's getting to be an old democracy, very powerful interest groups. one of throwns you had the fukushima nuclear disaster that was handled so badly was that the nuclear industry had
basically captured the regulators and controlled them so the japanese nuclear regulatory authority cooperate really, up to this present moment, get control of that situation. so they've got the problem they've got in the sense too developed a democracy, where interest groups have managed to put a hold on the whole thing. >> so russia. what an interesting case. there was a time when putin wasn't as strong as he is. there was a resurgence. is he a czar? is he a puppet master? >> russia is a good example of the new world in which the big dividing line is not so much democracy versus authoritarian government, but it's really kleptocratic government versus modern government. modern government is supposed to serve the public interest. the public is not there for the private enrichment of the people running the government in russia
it's kind of the opposite. that putin and all of the business cronies, the oligarchs around him, essentially want to hold on to power because they can milk resources from the state. this is oil and energy revenues and so forth. and they justify their rule on the basis of a nationalist story they've been selling the russian people, but the reality of that government, the reality of that government is just an unbelievably high degree of corruption, and that's really the fight that is going on in ukraine. these young protesters in kiev earlier this year wanted to get rid of the ukrainian version of mr. putin, who is this fellow, victorian ceviche, who -- victor yanukovych. was building a palace six times the size of the white house and funneling billions of dollars another of ukraine for the benefit of his own family.
that's the big dividing line in the world, between highly corrupt governments and governments trying to be modern in the sense of being imperson. >> ukraine had an opportunity there to move towards reform. >> ed did. >> what happened? why did they drop the ball. >> in 2004 you hat what was called the orange revolution in which you had young protesters that took over the square, forced a new election, which pushed victorian ceviche out. the new government that took power, the democratically elected government, failed to deal with the problem of corruption. they were bickering. they themselves were very corrupt. and as a result in 2010, yanukovych was voted back in a free and fair election. this is why i think the big struggle is really in a sense for many countries not overdemocracy. there's democracy in ukraine and russia. the big struggle is over whether you can have a clean government,
government that tries to serve the public interest. >> speaking about that, let's look at egypt before we look at few nearby sham egypt had a wonderful opportunity. they thought they had an opportunity. they didn't realize that the military just went into tactical reretreat, and came back. >> egypt is a terrible tragedy because prior to the arar spring, a lot of people thought that arabs were passive, didn't care about democracy, they're happy to live under an authoritarian government, and the one thing the arab spring showed, that's not true. there's no cultural rope why arabs like to live under a tie tyrannical government more than anybody else. but when they had this opening and mubarak was forced to step down they didn't know how to convert the anger into organizations and institutions
and there was an organization in egypt that knew how to do this, which was the muslim brotherhood, this islamist group. they won the first presidential and parliamentary elections and that gave the army an excuse to come back into power again. >> do you think there's hope for egypt? >> not in the short term. i think the army is in there with -- i hate to say, but with a certain amount of american support, and i think it's going to be probably another generation until there's another effort to open up that system again. >> america likes authoritarian regimes in the middle east. they're more stable, right? >> well, america has always had these interests in fighting terrorism and in securing oil supply. we have a big opportunity right now because, thanks to texas and other -- north dakota and places like that, the united states is about to become an exporter of liquefied natural gas, which is going to directly, directly
undercut people like vladimir putin. his ability to threaten essentially blackmail ukraine and western europe with his natural gas, i think that ability is going to end over the next five years, as america ramps up to actually export gas to the rest of the world. we have been driving down oil prices because of new technologies. american innovation is really going pretty strong. and that's going to change the balance of power in the middle east, because for the first time we're going to blanchly oil independent within a couple of years and that is going to change our calculation about our interests in that part of the world. >> tunisia is doing relatively okay. compared to everyone necessary the region. >> tunisia was always the best educated country in the middle east. a small -- a big advantage -- has a big middle class, and it's going to be the one success story in that region where you
get to a reasonably successful democracy within a few years. by the way, i think that people misunderstood what has gone on in that region. they say there's no democracies three years after the arab spring. shows it's a big failure. i have a chapter in my new book about europe in the area 1848. very much like the arab spring you. had revolutions in every single continental european country, within the space of two or three months, and within a year they were all reversed there was a big authoritarian comeback and it was 100 years until europe actually became democratic. so, i think that the expectation that you can democratize that quickly is naive expectation. >> was it naive for america to go into the middle east, the two conflicts, engaged in to bring
democracy, thinking with we get rid of saddam hussein, dem case would loom? >> the two are defendant. afghanistan we were perfectly justified in invading in 2001 because we had to get rid of bin laden bin and al qaeda. the mistake there was just staying too long. was expanding that war beyond the original -- once al qaeda was gone, continuing the war. iraq, i think, was a mistake from beginning to end because i think the cost of that in terms of american prestige, in terms of people killed in terms of iraqis killed, and in terms of the mess that exists right now, i think in the hoyt books will go down as probably one of the biggest debacles in american foreign policy. >> china is very interesting because it became a state long before states in europe, yet when it comes to democracy what hat happened? >> well, china i think people don't understand, they invented
the modern state and did this 2300 years ago in the chin dynasty, in the third century bc. they had a centralized bureaucratic country. the only thing that they didn't have was either rule of law or democracy. and so they basically invented dictatorship. that's the simplest way to put and it that been the characteristic of chinese rule ever since. and i think that what is different about china now from this long tradition is that middle class. it's the fact that their society has undergone changes of the sort that the ute or europe went through over 100-year period from the mid-1900s to the middle of the 20th century, and done this in a generation. this much social change will have political implications. there's no way that socialized rigid system will be able to adapt to that kind of a social
upheaval, and that's why i think the system is either going to adapt or it's going to explode. >> how would you compare -- let's look at south america quickly before we look at america. how would you compare brazil and chile, what is happening there? >> chile is a really successful country. it went through a dictatorship in the 1970s and '80s, but since then it's adopted a very open market economy, and it's basically become a -- it's at the poor end but basically a developed country now. brazil, the problem, again, is not democracy, because brazil are about to have presidential -- a second round of their presidential election next week. it's a very vigorous, open society, but it is very, very corrupt. it is very corrupt. it is very hard to find a brazilian legislator that does not have a pretty shady record, and i think part of the big struggle in that country is, can
you actually get past that corruption to deliver something like bus service or health care, education. one rope there's such a high -- one reason there's such a high level of poverty in brazil is their public education system is atrocious. that's the sense in which you need a government that can deliver things that people really want, and that's the struggle. it's less the struggle over democracy right now. >> wonderful. let turn our attention to the next ten minutes to america. so, you are saying some hard things about america, doctor. you're saying that america is now beginning to experience decay as a democracy, and you say there are two reasons, growing economic inequality, concentration of wealth by the elite which has allowed them to purchase immense political power and manipulate the system to further their own interests, and undo influence of interest groups. >> i think that all of those things are true, and they become more problematic because of our
basically fundamental institutional setup that the founding fathers created. the founding fathers created a system of checks and balances because they were worried about one thing above all, which was maximizing individual freedoms, and prevent are tyranny. they really feared and distrusted centralized government, and with good reason. that's why the colonists fought a revolution against the british monarch okay bump they divided into a system of political balances which -- called veto points where a small, well-organized group, can stop a decision of the whole in order to protect their interests. now, for most of the 20th 20th century, that sim worked pretty well because the two political parties overlapped substantially so presidents were able to do things, like roosevelt or johnson or ronald
reagan. but today, because of polarization, there's no overlap between the parties. this wouldn't be that bad a thing in a parliament re system, but in our presidential system, it basically means that every well-organized group can use that check and balance system to stop things they don't like. that's why we have a tax code that is an embarrassment to the country. it's full of basically privileges -- [applause] >> there's a fundamental difference between a privilege and a liberty. a liberty is a freedom from the government that applies to everybody. a privilege is something that applies to just me, my family, maybe my corporation, and we have a very high corporate tax rate, but very few corporations pay this because they have negotiated through their lobbyists exemptions for themselves, and the result is something that is not representative and not fundamentally fair. and then you have a congress that has not been able to pass a
budget really since 2008. and all of this, i think, very simple things. immigration reform or the mildest forms of gun control where you get very strong popular majorities in the country that say they want this. congress can't pass it because any well-organized interest group can veto actions by the whole. i think that's where we're stuck. that's why i call the situation that we have vetocraciy. >> you said that american state deals poorly with major challenges because? >> well, okay to be fair, the united states in some dimensions actually is fairly effective. so, for example, the federal reserve board and -- to be fair the u.s. congress actually dealt, i think, with the financial crisis reasonably well. much better than the europeans
did. because a lot of powers delegated to certain institutions like the treasury and the fed that actually allow it to act in an emergency. i think despite the fear over ebola, actually in the end our public health system is going to -- they've made some mistakes in the last couple of weeks but it's going to hold up and going to dem moan straight to people why you need a strong, effective government. so there are parts of the u.s. that actually work pretty well. i think in foreign policy we still have pretty strong ability to make decisions, and although americans are not eager to leap into another war, we still can exercise power globally much more effectively than the europeans or other powers. the big problems, i think, come in dealing with long-term problems, things that are not meet crises, like looking forward in terms of budget deficits in terms of doing things like long-term
entitlement reform. these are things that are beyond the capacity of the american political system. >> now, you wrote one most famous books in political science 25 years ago. is that right? >> you said that. i didn't. >> i remember reading it. it was just remarkable. it was called "end of history." what was the thesis of the book and now, looking back at it, where are you? due still believe it? you were associated with the neocons, the neoconservative movement. what was the book. >> the book was not a neoconservative book. the book was actually written in this tradition of haigle and marx and european philosophy, and the history that i was talking about was hit with a capital h. that is to say the evolution of human society, they go from hunter-gatherer to agricultural to industrial to post industrial, and the question of the end of history is not the
termination of history. it's the question of, where is history pointing? so for many years, progressive intellectuals said it's pointing towards communism. that was marc's view. marx believed that history would end in a communist utopia. all i did was get up and say in 1989, we're not going get there we're nod headed towards communism. we're headed towards liberal democracy, if anything, and i think that's still true. i think the only reasonable alternative model out there that is a real challenge of the china model, but for a whole variety of ropes i don't think that is a sustainable, either economic or political system, so i still basically believe that the foundations of the theory are true. >> why isn't china sustainable? economically or politically? >> well, i think, first of all, they privilege growth over other things like environment, clean air, clean soil, water, this sort of thing to such an extent
they have many liabilities built into the system. the bigger problem is, political. they've got essentially a very strong state with no rule of law and no democratic accountability. it's an unchecked dictatorship, and that system can work well as long as they've got a go emperor in place. if you have a good emperor they can do things quickly like build high-speed rail and internet connectivity and so forth. but if they get a bad emperor, there's no checks and balances and, therefore no way to stop this person. and right now, you have a leader in china, cheng chui ping, who is conducting a burn on the grounds of anticorruption, who may be one of the most powerful leaders in china since mao.
>> globalization and technological change in a capitalist economy. what is america's response? >> i think that democracy is fundamentally challenged by technological change because the whole impact of the information technology revolution, automation, robots, all of these things, has been to erode middle class employment. machines can subtattoo -- smart machines can substitute for more and more different kinds of hum yap labor. the result is the median income is eight% lower today than in 2007 prior to the financial crisis, and this is a problem that affects all countries in europe because they've got a bigger welfare state, they can mask the effects but they're still suffering from that same erosion of jobs, and as aristotle said, if you don't have a broad middle class it's
very hard to sustain a democracy and that's the central political and economic challenge that any government in the united states is going to have to face going forward. >> wonderful. yes, please. >> why even though having democracy most of the western europe, why was it unable to get out of the financial crisis and the impact of it quick enough? >> so, why was europe not able to deal with the crisis effectively? on a national level, i think there are many actually pretty effective democracies in europe. germany, suiterland, netherlands, scandanavia: the big problem is the design of the european union, and frankly, the problem is the u.on union looks like the united states. a federal system, complex divide
powers but allocate power in the wrong bay. brussel is powerful where i shouldn't be. on the labeling of food and cheese and wine and this sort of thing, brussels was also telling pool they can't do things they'd like to do, and it's very annoy, bull things wrist counsels, like monetary policy or fiscal policy, they're extremely weak. they don't have the power the fed does or the u.s. congress does, and that what's really led to the euro crisis in 2010, and they're not out of it. in no way out of it. >> your description about what is going on in the united states was quite clear, and is the way i see it, too. what do you think is going to happen? >> crystal ball. yes. >> well, i guess i have to say that at the moment i'm kind of pessimistic because it seems to me that after the financial
crisis, given that it originated of wall street, you should have seen a big populous upsurge that would lead to, for example, adequate financial regulation that would solve the original problem, and that hasn't happened. in fact, the only big mobilization we have seen since the crisis has actually been on the right with the tea party. politically it's very strange and i don't think there's been adequate leadership where you had progressive coalition where there is a leader that can adequately explain what happened and point to a way forward, particularly when dealing with this technological challenge that i mentioned, and, therefore, i think we're stuck where we are. and so i unfortunately think that the only way we'll get out of this is by some big external shock. if the dollar collapses or there's another big banking crisis or a war or something,
that will kind of shock us out of our complacency. i hate to say this. i think that's the way political change has to come about often times. >> kind of an an adjacent note, what do you feel the role is of a well-informant electorate in a modern democracy and what role could that have in actually shaping the types of mobilizations you're talking about here and in places like china? >> well, so, look. a well-educated, and well-informed electorate is absolutely critical nor functioning of a democracy. no question. and americans don't pay attention. we don't teach civics in schools anymore. students don't understand the basic structure of the american government or the american constitution. they get very poor information given to them on television and
highly opinionated bloviators on the internet but very little real information. so it's possible in this country to believe really absurd things for a very long period of time, and so i think that is an extremely important dimension of citizenship. citizenship has not been emphasized in this country for a very long time. the fact that all of us have a duty as citizens to keep informed and participate and vote and basically care about the public spirit. there's been this denigration of public affairs for the last generation that has been very destructive, i think. [inaudible question] [inaudible question] >> -- what you see for special
interests versus what is going for all. from a historical perspective, how does a country get out of that sort of decay or decline? there are examples of countries or civilizations that have gotten out of it, where democracy gets to the point where it is more or less controlled by extremely powerful interest groups, to the point almost where i would say it's not that we haven't been able to get anything done for the past five year although that's been awful, but it's the only things we have gotten done have been for special good interest groups. i want you to expound on this from a historical perspective. >> this is great. i get to tell you also historical story. in the old regime in france, before the french revolution, the degree of corruption and privileges got to the following extent, that the french kings louis xiii, louis xiv were to
broke because of all the wars they taught, they actually would sell government offices to rich individuals so you could buy the position of treasurerrer of france for a big sum of money, and then after that you could collect taxes and keep all of the taxes for yourself, and not only that, you could take these office and you could give it to your children as part of their inheritance. this was called venal office holding. how did the french do it? how did they fix this system? atreat to reform several times in the 18th century and ultimately they had to have a revolution, and they basically beheaded all of the people with these offices. >> a little extreme. >> a little bit extreme. in the second -- so that story is in the first volume of this political order series. the more positive example, i think, is the one i tell about the progressive era in the
united states. in the progressive era -- in the 19th century, united states had this thing that historically known as the spoil system or the patronage system in which every single office from the federal government down to your local postmaster was allocated on the basis of political patronage. given to somebody as a reward for political support by a member of congress or a representative or whatnot. this system was ended at the beginning in the 1880s as a result of a grassroots movement where grandmothers would get very upset that their fourth class postmaster was some political hack, combined with good leadership from people like theodore roosevelt and woodrow wilson, and then it was stimulated by an external shock, which was the assassination of james garfield in 1882, at the hands of a would-be office
seeker that finally embarrassed congress into passing something known as the pendleton act in 1883, which set up the first u.s. civil service commission, basically said we're not giving out offices politically. it's going to be done on the basis of merit-based civil service exam, and so forth. and that's an example of democracy fixing itself. >> listen to you, very excited, and a friend of mine immediately commented, oh, you're not going like his neocon style. and i -- what was ironic, right when he commented on that, you were saying iraq was the biggs mistake from beginning to end. i wrote back, he's not a in theow con. he just said this, and he wrote back saying you signed something say saddam needed to go.
but i put my phone away because i wanted to listen to you. so, where do you stand in relationship to the neocon movement and what do you have to say about that movement in general? >> not to put you on the spot. >> there's a micro -- >> it's an easy question to answer. i actually wrote a whole book about this called "america at the crossroads" and that's why i broke with them, because i think that they made a fundamental mistake which is the overestimation of what hard american military power could do to reshape the politics of the middle east. they were way too optimistic about this, and i think that's been borne out by events in both iraq and afghanistan, where we were trying to create prosperous, stable democracies, and we really failed, i think, despite huge investments of manpower and wealth in both of
those countries. and so i think that we need a more modest foreign policy. that's not a foreign policy of complete disengagement, so i think that we still need to influence the way things work and we need to deal with threats and so forth, but i think the lesson from those two wars is that american power cannot concretely shape an outcome on the ground in that part of the world, and we should stop kidding ourselves we can do that. so, even with president obama -- i think that it's -- i support airstrikes against isis in iraq and syria right now but i think that the objective of destroying isis was too ambitious. i don't think we're going to do it. we have not destroyed al qaeda in 13 years of trying, and again, i think president obama went from, i think, excess receive passivity to once again kind of overpromising what american power could deliver.
>> you can write to your friend, neocon no more. >> specifically on the ruling of the court against the country whether it's led into default if it's paid or -- >> i'm sorry. about argentina. >> yes. on the ruling that -- whether it pays -- >> i mean, the -- the new york judge is ruling on the holdouts in the bond thing, is a very narrow question, and i'm not an expert in bankruptcy law. i think it's a somewhat questionable ruling. but that not the big issue in argentina. the big issue in argentina is just long-term pervasive bad macroeconomic policies. argentina it's -- is a classic e
of a country that does not learn from history. it did not launch from the many hyper inflations that it has experienced over the years. it always gives into these populace political passions where -- so under the most recent president, the argentine government spend much moreman than it could take in, couldn't borrow money so started printing money. the vice president actually bought the company that was prisoning the currency so he could benefit from it. and then when the statistical agency said this is going to lead to inflation or is leading to inflation, they sacked everybody in the agency and put their own people there. so, talk about bad government. argentina has been a poster child for bad government for many, many years. and so the judge may be wrong in this particular case. this one i think i'm -- maybe
side with the argentine government a little bit more, but that's not the fundamental problem. the fundamental problem is a government that does nose know how to run an economy. >> let's take one more quick question. >> hi. for american citizenson what you spoke to about becoming informed and staying informed, what are your ideas about our abilities or our responsibilities in how the government is now in trying to change it back to where the people have more power instead of corporations? and also, where you become and stay informed is not slanted to one side or the other. >> well, we got a really big problem in dealing with money and politics. i think that is ultimately at the root of many of our problems. this effort of elites to grab the political system and use it
for their own purposes is really fueled by money, and the supreme court has said that money and politics is basically a form of free speech and, therefore, protected by the first amendment. i think this is a very strange decision. i think many other democracies are able to control money. so, money is important in any democratic system, but other democracies are actually able to control the amount of money much better than we are. so it's not impossible to do. given that the court has spoken this way, we're kind of stuck, and this is one of the reason is why our system is so hard to reform because you either have to gate new court or get a constitutional amendment, which isn't going to happen, i suspect in my lifetime. so, i think what it depends on is citizen mobilization. that's the way democracies -- that's the way they work. people get mad about something, they mobilize, they organize, they come up with a plan, a
concrete plan that is going to fix things, and then they push for it using the political system. that's the story or the progressive era and the story that could have unfolded after the financial crisis but has not. so, i think that's a task in front of everybody today. >> wonderful. thank you so much. thank you, everybody, for being here. [applause] >> love for you to be mobilized in that direction. go to the book-signing tent, please, and meet dr. fukuyama, gate copy of his book. thank you for being here. >> thank you very much. [applause] [inaudible conversations]
is downis from the library. >> i am the director of the research library for the new york public library. >> host: what does that mean. >> guest: there are four research libraries. there's this one in mid-town man had tan, the library in harlem the library for the performing arts at lincoln and the business library on mad sisson avenue. >> host: what do you do here? >> guest: i'm responsible for collections, fellowship, reference and research for all facilities. >> host: we'll have her show us the collections and the research library but where are we right now. >> guest: in the magnificent rose reading room, the heart and soul of the library. features lots of users who are taking advantage of the library's resources, not only our physical resources, books
and materials, but also access to technology which is incredibly important. >> host: even though this room is quiet and sedate, you look out the window and you can see the entire city of new york. >> guest: that's right. when the library was founded in 1911, of course there weren't these tall buildings outside the reading room. instead all you could see was sky. so, it's really a place where the city has really grown up around the library. >> why is it called the rose reading room? >> guest: the rose family named this reading room in honor or their children when it was rennovated in 1998. and during that renovation, every square inch of the surfaces in this room were touched bay -- by a crafts person. so it's been restored to its original splendor. >> host: do you know bet paintings? >> guest: these are mural wes had to actually recreate. they were in such a bad state of disrepair before the renovation. these werecrafted in a studio,
on canvas, and then installed here. they are not painted michael angelo style. >> host: how much of the library's collection of artifacts are available for people to see? >> guest: all of them. our collections are more than 51 million items, and we have all kinds of things, from books, to manuscripts and archival material, photographs, prints, menus, maps, all kinds of material. >> host: one of those valuable items is this. >> guest: this is a grudenburg bible volume. we have one in our collection, many great research libraries do. the significance of guttenburg bible is this was the first one to be brought to the united states in the mid-19th mid-19th century. so, it's remarkable in that way.
>> host: so, peter, you were a whopping 27 years old you. had finished medical school but just getting started in your ph.d efforts in microbiology at the institute of tropical medicine in antwerp. a mysterious test tube sample shows up in terrible condition. and you figure out there's some new disease in africa and you have the chutzpah to turn and say, i know i'm only 27 but i want to go there. i want to go to africa. let me go. i want to be in the middle of this adventure. where did all this gall come from? >> guest: i'm actually a pretty
timid and shy person. >> host: yeah, right. >> guest: come from land where my mother always said, speaking, silver, sigh license is golden. -- silence is golden. i think i'm a bit different. first of all issue had an incredible urge for discovery from when i was a child and when i was a teenager i worked for a travel agency and went one month to morocco, one month to turkey, at the time there was basically no tourist infrastructure, when i was ten i had only one goal in life and that is get out of my village, which was a bit in kind of a very conservative village. to the despair of my mother and my whole family because when i was like this, i always asked, why? which drove everybody nuts.
that was the kind of kid i was. and not to annoy people but i wanted to know. and i have not much suspect for hierarchy and authority. so, that's why i said, yes, let's go for it. and then let's do it, and it's not because i'm 27. also, later on, most people who have more seniority and more experience, they actually were not so jumping up and down to flow to zaire and to go -- >> they knew what a hell hole it would be and you didn't. >> guest: yes, yes, i guess so. >> host: but coming away from the way you described the episode, there's four things that i think are the key experiences or realizations, the ah-ha moments for you, out of the ebola in 1976 episode, because this strange test tube and this 27-year-old flight to africa for the first time is, as
it turns out, the ebola epidemic, and the four things were first you experience africa and you fall in love with africa. >> guest: right. >> host: secondly you discover internationallallism and all the difficulties of coordinating and working together with scientists and all sorts of other folks from around the world. you discover the relationship between global inequity and disease that, if people are so poor they don't have sterile syringes, there will be spread of disease, and then you discovered do-gooders, can-do so badly it would be better they weren't there in the first place. so, let's take -- >> guest: you read the book. >> host: what was it that this young 27-year-old fell in love with? africa? >> guest: i think it was the
warmth of people, the human side, the creativity. i cannot hide also the music and the dancing. but the fact that i thought it was on the one hand so much to do, incredible needs, which are still there, and the will to improve it, and so i saw opportunities, which i think are very underestimated today in africa. when you look at growth of gdp today in the world, the highest rates are no longer in asia but a in africa. i'm not saying that africa has made it. we see natural resources that are there. i think -- i didn't know all these things in these days, but it was a combination of the gut feeling and the warmth of the people, the human side, but also the sense -- i got also very
upset and angry because of the inequalities, of the -- say ear was then ruled by mobutr and there were a group of plutocrats stealing from the country. and there was great university but nobody was -- even no electricity, and people were denied some basic opportunities. but i can't explain why. i was bitten by the virus -- >> you can watch this and other programs online.
[inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] >> folks, thank you very much for joining us here at our last offer for the day. we very much appreciate your taking your time on this hot day to join us, and as we move into, after a short discussion on the book, we will go into a question and answer. so when you are standing close to me appear, i apologize. i have been here all day in the heat, so bear with me and we will get to it. thank you for joining us. and with that i am going to ask our moderator to
introduce our author. [applause] >> good afternoon. this afternoon i have a great pleasure of talking with katha pollitt, who is running around our great nation promoting her new book which is most definitely shaping the way that we'd talk about abortion rights in this country today and changing hearts and minds, we hope. so i would like to invite katha pollitt to read for a bit, and after that we will have a discussion. and if there is time perhaps we will take a few questions from the audience. >> thank you so much for of being here on this beautiful but rather warm day. i am going to read the introduction to this book which is called "pro: reclaiming abortion rights" because it gives you a taste of what is to come in the
book. i never had an abortion, but my mother did. she did not tell me about it, but from what i pieced together after her death from all line in her fbi file, which my father, the old radical, had requested along with his own color it was in 1960. so like almost all abortions back then, it was illegal. the agent to counter file wrote that she was in the care of the physician for gun logical problems below which i like to think was his chivalrous way of protecting her from further investigation. perhaps he, too, was in the dark and only put down what the new. ferraro i was angry at her the way when is angry at the dead for keeping secrets until it is too late to ask questions and angry at your mother for having a life outside her child. at that she owed me real
woman to woman honesty and said the lower at least in addition to details of the nine marriage proposals she had received by the time she met my father and falling in love with him at first sight and ila been within three months later when she had just turned 21 buried knowing about her abortion might have helped me come given me a true sense of life and. a young and romantic woman who had no idea what was what. when i asked myself why have been so preoccupied with abortion rights for so long, i wonder if learning about my mother's abortion, its illegality, the fact she did not tell my father, the a nobility of our reasons are feelings or the experiences of, i wonder if that is part of the answer. i find myself wondering, see a real doctor, kind to her, respectful, do his best not to cause pain, did she take someone with her?
and remember talking with a friend, judy, about how another woman they knew which had had a an abortion. so maybe this circle of london steered her to get a practitioner. maybe your friend sat in the waiting room, if there was one, and took her home in a taxi after word. it would have been so wrong if might tender, fragile mother had had to go through that all by herself. what did mean that my mother had to break the law to end the pregnancy? it meant that american basically said to hurt a maid is the 20th century, so we will let you vote and go to college and have a family and the job, not a great job, not the one he wanted because unfortunately that job is for men, but you can have your own charge account and your own subscription to the heritage book club. underneath all that normal
middle-class life and was a secret underground life of women, and that you must manage outside the law. if you are injured or die or are trapped by the police, you will have only yourself to blame because the real reason that you are here on earth is to produce something you shirt at your peril. i wonder if my mother knew that her own -- my own grandmother died of an abortion after bearing nine children in russia during the first world war or if her mother kept the family secret from her as she kept her secret from me. the women's lives are different now, so much so we are in danger of forgetting how they used to be. legalizing abortion did not just a woman from death and injury and fear of arrest, it did not just make it possible for women to commit to education and work and free them from marriages and
too many kids but changed how women saw themselves, as mothers by choice, not fate. even a woman to thinks it is tantamount to murder is making a choice when she keeps that pregnancy. some may feel like she has to have that baby. actually, she does not. she is choosing to have that baby. zero v. wade gave women in existential freedom that is not always welcome, indeed sometimes quite painful -- but has become part of what women are. one thing row v wade did not do is make abortion private. sometimes i look up from reading about the latest onslaught against abortion rights missouri legislators passed wedding requirements.
the montana held center that has performed abortions trashed beyond repair. justice harry blackmun's majority opinion in roe v wade was all about privacy. everyone gets away and has -- her employer. if the ceo of a hobby lobby crafts store chain, a secular business, decided to that they are banned by god, he is entitled to keep them out of her health care coverage, even though he is wrong about how these methods work. it is a religion. facts do not matter, especially when the facts involve women and liberty.
maybe the mistake was thinking that a woman could claim privacy as a right in the first place. a man's home is his castle, but a woman's body has never been wholly around. historically as long stir nation, community, father, family, husband. in 1973 mayoral race -- merrill rape was legal in every state. why shouldn't she be held legally responsible and be forced to have a caesarean effort doctor thinks or be charged with a crime if she uses illegal drugs and be charged with the stillborn baby. incidents like this have been happening all over the country for some time now denying women the right to end a pregnancy is the flip side of punishing women for conduct during pregnancy and
if not punishing monitoring. in the spring of 2014 a law was proposed in the kansas state legislature that would require doctors to report every miscarriage, no matter how early in pregnancy. you would almost think the people who have always opposed women's independence and full participation in society were still at it. if they can still use women's bodies to keep them under surveillance and control. that gives rise to a wish. surely, i find myself daydreaming. there is some substance in common use that women could drink after sex are at the end of the month that would keep them on pregnant with no one will visor, something you could buy at the supermarket or maybe things the you could mix together, items so ordinary that they would never be banned the could prepare an ear on the
common flesh your uterus and leave it pink and shiny without you ever needing to know if you were pregnant or about to be. coca-cola, things you might have on yourself right now just waiting for some clever person to put them together, some stay at home mother with a chemistry degree rattling around her kitchen late at night, something like the herbal concoctions. this is a quote. when i was a child growing up on an island in the caribbean whose inhabitants were mostly descendants of people forcibly brought their from africa, i noticed from time to time my mother and her friends, all women, would gather together and some spot in our yard and talk in sip and drink some very dark, hot drink that they had made from various leaves and bark of trees
that they had gathered. i came to understand that the potions they were drinking more men to to sweep their wounds clean of anything in it that would result in then being unable to manage the day-to-day working of their lives, that is this clearing of their loans was another form of housekeeping. think of it -- that is the end of the ." think of it. no religious fanatic. baby killer, taking down their license plate number hoping to raise your blood pressure so high you will not be able to have a procedure that day. no need to know. the whole elaborate gone. ru-486, the french abortion bill was supposed to accomplish that.
in 1999 the new york times sunday magazine cover story called the little white bombshell that may well reconfigure the politics and perception of abortion, pushing abortion earlier and reid integrating it with regular medical practice. the age-old post that a single technological or scientific advance will once and for all resolve a social issue, a fantasy that means for getting the new thing will be embedded in the existing system and involve the existing u.n. been. for a variety of reasons difficulties obtaining the drug, laws that made medication abortion heavily rhetoric -- regulated, few doctors not already involved took up the challenge of prescribing in. did they want early abortion? to many prefer medication to surgery?
especially in rural areas it would be simple and cheaper and less stressful for women to get a prescription from their local ob/gyn or gps and to travel long distances from the but it would be a good thing to free women from having to run a gun when the protesters. none of that mattered. what women want is simply not important. trust women is a popular model in the movement. it sounds a little sentimental, doesn't it? part of that old sister of the powerful feminism. but that does not mean that every woman is wise or did or has magical intuitive powers. it means that no one else can make a better decision because no one else is ruling her life, and since she has to live with the decision and not you or the state legislature or the supreme court, chances are she is doing her best in a tight spot. dr. george tiller who provided abortion carrying
have measures in that left women unprotected. she feel the qualifications would be a stir in the difficult to get judges and legislators to drop later. it was blank. maybe she was on the something. what seemed at the time to be small details have prevented the critical fall lines. the deference to physicians and their judgment preserving the idea that a woman's desire to end a pregnancy was not enough in itself. had to be approved by respectable figure, in that they normally a man. furthermore, the germ of the
idea that the fetus have rights that trump's those of the woman. is not hard to see how these small seeds blossomed into the hall regular all we have today which is all about his respecting women's capacity to make an independent judgment about the pregnancy parental notification consent, a judicial bypass, waiting periods, government mandated propaganda. but it was wrong in a way. how the supreme court agreed that the proper abortion law was none at all, we would probably have ended up close to where we are today because of the power and determination of the anti-abortion movement and the qualms and hesitation and lack of engagement of most or nominally pro-choice and yet it is just that hard to see women belonging to
themselves. they keep trying. they put off rent or utilities to put up the money, drive across states to submit to a clinic and sleep in their cars. they do not do this because there are careless slots or eight babies or fail to see clearly what the alternatives are. they see the alternative all too clearly. we live, as alice will one road, in a society that is actively hostile to women as ambition for a better life. under these conditions the unwillingly pregnant women faces a terrified loss of control over her fate. abortion is an act of self-defense. we don't see abortion that way because we don't think that women have the right to a self, they're supposed to live for others. qualities that are seen as normal and desirable in men are perceived as selfish and
aggressive in women, especially once they have children and perhaps that is why women's privacy has so little purchase on the abortion debate. and only a self could have equality. many legal scholars, including the justice ginsburg have argued that the supreme court should have legalized abortion and rows of equality rather than privacy. pregnancy and childbirth are not only physical and medical experiences but they're social experiences that in modern america allies in the 1870's to serve to protect women's ability to participate in society on equal footing with men. would we be living in a different world today had blackmun based abortion rights on the need to dismantle female subordination, are with the same people say, well, if women cannot be cool without abortion there will have to stay in their place.
in texas women in the rio grande valley now hundreds of miles from the clinic, no problem. they are going over the mexican border to buy a drug that causes miscarriages and this sold over the counter as an anti all its -- anti also medication. undocumented immigrants fear arrest, have no money, too much shame around abortion to risk being seen by someone in knows them, but now with clinics disappearing more and more women will have no choice but to turn to pills, as women do in ireland and other countries where it is illegal for a woman to end a pregnancy.
this is a law laws that were supposed to protect women will result in. as i mentioned earlier, a single discovery or invention rarely reflects its promise of deep-seated social change. even the birth control pill has fallen short. half of all pregnancies in the united states are accidental. still, i imagine my mother sitting at the kitchen table in her pretty bathrobes on an ordinary day in 1960 cutting out articles from the new york times as she loves to do. pores in through the windows facing the street. i wrote this book because i wanted to put real women like my mother back at the center of the way we talk about abortion.
abortion opponents have been effective at shifting the focus of moral concern on to the contents of women, even an and implanted fertilized egg is a baby unless they are brave women who seek abortion have been pushed back into the shadows. it is one thing for rape victim to speak up more of a woman with a wanted pregnancy that has turned into a medical catastrophe, but why can't a woman just say, this was not the right time for me or to children or one or none are enough. why must a woman apologized for not having a baby because she happens to get pregnant? motherhood is not a default setting for a woman's life from first. to menopause, and she needs a note from god not to say yes. even if like most wine who have abortions like my mother already have children . there is deep contempt and disregard for the seriousness of mother as
well. [inaudible] >> in just a few minutes. in five minutes we will move into q&a. >> what happens to this? >> we had 45 minutes set aside, and with the last 15 minutes for q&a, and we are very close to that. >> that was not what we were told. >> actually, we have almost half an hour. >> but in the last 50 minutes of that committee if we could set that aside for q&a and welcome back and give you a little bit of advance notice in front of that so the you can wrap up where you are so that we can move into that if that is okay with you. >> well, okay. anyway, that is the gist of the book. this introduction concludes with a call for people to
start speaking up and getting active because the other side is active and vocal, and i hope this book encourages people to do that >> right off the bat let me say first of all, it is such a thrill to get to talk to you and i wish that we have a long time to talk. have to say, i cannot remember the last time i read any book that i found as exciting and engaging as i found "pro". and never read a book that made me feel like abortion is something in is good, good thing for women. when i read that the committee felt the extremely liberating to me as someone who has had an abortion, to be able to think what that experience in a way that it is not shameful. i can tell you, i have never said that to a group of people obviously.
i don't know. it feels huge and important to have this kind of conversation. then i felt a serrated reading this book, empowered i thought, to look at abortion not just as a woman's issue but a human issue and not a moral issue is extraordinary, and i am enormously grateful to you for writing this book. [applause] >> and it is funny. and it is funny. >> if you read this book you will feel like you can said. you will feel like you can say that, that we have a right to our bodies, right to make these decisions, and this book will have you on your feet.
i don't know how many of you have read it, but i guarantee you as soon as you finish you will be on your feet writing about a love note to eric. i wanted to say, it was also very funny, which is really eat sometimes the only way you can write of material that is so deeply important and profound and serious because people don't want to have a conversation. >> it is so true. what i tried to do is god wanted to split the paradigm but instead of abortion as the terrible marker of decadence of want to say, it is a good thing for society, good for women to be able to plan families, and good to be able to have their education and work and dreams. we lose so much social capitol, so much talent because women have children too early or not in a good
situation, and it is good for men obviously not to be connected to children they don't want to be connected to any good for children to be wanted, and it is good for society just to have families that are able to structure themselves in a kind of call and rational way. planned parenthood, yes. abortion is a essentials. it is just essential, and that is why one in three american women who have had an abortion site menopause. this area table camino, the cold hearted child dating career woman flourishes because our side has been intimidated. >> you make a wonderful point in the book that most women who have abortions are either mothers or we will go on to be mothers.
in that role and who has an abortion and the woman who has children is the same woman at different points in their lives. >> it is true, and this has all been lost. the mythical day before birth abortion before. i think that it is important we put it back into a real life practical context of everybody's life. >> can you tell us how to talk about it in a better way? i was realizing that i am a loyal and pro-choice, pro abortion, and demand, with the apology. i found when i was reading it to my office seems
pro-choice. but when someone asks me, oh, yes, a really awful thing, the worst possible thing, saying all the stuff that i do not mean, but i do not want to appear to be rude or-or take too far of the stance. i need a new way to talk about it. how can i read frame the discussion so that i sound powerful and say what i mean and don't sound -- gazette think that as part of the problem. i think that is an issue. has been made such a shameful thing to do that it is like the wonderful columnist ellen goodman said , advance so far that of women can do anything they
want as long as they feel guilty about it, and that think that there is a lot of guilt and pain attached because of the way that we talk about it and because of the push back from the anti-abortion movement for which our side has not been able to successfully countered. the idea, one reason you might feel troubled is because you were careless with birth control. even if you or not, but think about it this way when, from the sun you have your first to the time you have your last, you have to be preventing pregnancy him every single month hands except when you wanted
president for. >> hyper vigilance. >> i talk about that in the book. this perfect performance at the same time we demand that they be incredibly hypersexual. >> it does not work out weldon. so hon someday their will be better birth controls. it will never be perfect. we just have to accept than any unit. women should not let themselves be put in the position of someone else judging them as careless. this is ridiculous when. most women have children, and the ones who do not want to should not harbor.
[applause] >> do you think it is important for women who have had abortions are are very supportive of abortion rights and stop trying to make a case? should it just be enough to say, i needed an abortion? >> i would like -- >> that is the big thing. >> it is -- it would be of really good thing if women who can do that could talk about it. it would help sell much. when people can see, oh, i thought they were spending their lives having sex in bath houses, but now i see it as my colleague. nell i see that my cousin is a lesbian and -- i mean, none my cousin. i am imagining somebody else
saying that. and it really changed how people saw gays and lesbians i think that the stereotypes flourish in the silence that we have left. for example, when they are not saying women who have abortions are sluts or cold hearted career woman bears saying that women who have abortions are confused and being coerced and pushed around by other people which is why we need restrictions. you know, i think women need to say, i was not confused. i was not persuaded by anyone else. i've made a decision. another thing is the idea about regrets, this is a huge thing. we all regret things we do in life. most women don't regret their abortions. most women feel a sense of relief and that they have done what was best for them.
[applause] >> but there are women who regret their abortions and they go to state legislators and tell the story, and the legislators are happy to hear from them. the point is, we all lived so regret things we have done. that is not the way to make the law. people regret divorces. no one would say if mary regressive divorce, so we should make it illegal for everybody. that is not the way the world works. >> we are only going to have another 12 seconds i feel for me to ask you a question. i am wondering what the one thing you would like people to take away from the book, if there was one thing that she wanted people to leave here knowing our feelings are believing, what would you like that to be? >> abortion is and always had been part of the fabric of american life, and we
should acknowledge that and live with it and stop giving women such a hard time and instead held one in which is what they need to be, both -- not have children when they don't want to have them with good birth control and sex ed and help them when they do have children which reduce so little of in this country. [applause] six -- >> we would be happy to take your questions. >> does anyone have questions that they would like to ask? please come and stand in line here, and you'll need to as many as we can. >> hello. i happen to know a woman who became pregnant from being
raped. she had the child, and she was the first person to stand up and say that no one should make that decision for someone else. and her daughter who is now an adult and feels the same way. but they have had people tell them that they should be opposed to abortion. you touched on this a little bit, but i -- it amazes me that when men are being told malvaceous feel about something, and i was hoping you could address that part of it. >> you raise an interesting question. there is a lot of social coercion. you're supposed to feel a certain way, as you say to my regret, it was the most difficult decision the you ever made, but how realistic is that? you don't want to have a baby, a college student, get
pregnant, of a sudden it is the most difficult decision i have ever made. i don't think that is how woodworks. most come to the decision quickly, have 1s in his they can come as something restrictions make harder than ever. is horrible let women are saying to this woman who was raped and had a baby that is fine, but you should be anti-choice because really we should be forcing all races to have babies. that is a different thing than someone who does that voluntarily for whatever reason. >> fermi affordability is a huge issue, and there is such hypocrisy with the legislators who are so pro-life, yet they are against maternity leave, the
state that we are in right now, leading the nation in child and insurance, yet these women who are seeking an abortion simply because they didn't have the economic means to raise a child is considered such a selfish act. how do we sort of combat that hypocrisy? >> i talked a lot of motherhood in the book because one of the things that the anti-abortion movement said is having a child is no big deal the fact that we do so little to help mothers and children and families and children is a disgrace. we do not have paid the charity -- maternity leave,
encourage people to oppose some of website who impregnated them and they were in college because they are now deacons of church composers society. somehow it still carries 20 years later that she had the abortion and there is no conversation about who impregnates them believed arnold lehman hutton we bring into this conversation? ninety-seven catholics of your idea.
>> let's get that going. >> this is another piece of evidence, really all about sex because there is known once sanctioned for men. abstinence swim, it is always about the gross staying vergence if they have sex their dirty forever . where there is no comparable thing about men being virgins until married. completely reich the burden is specifically on women. be. >> that did not know i was pregnant and decided to have an abortion. i did it.
-understood that if i did not do the felt like i was going to have to be burdened with responsibility of living with my parents forever. >> he was fine. we would by myself. roentgen people looked at me crazy. well, how old was it. i wanted to know. i wanted to know. i managed it very carefully. it was my decision. i would have made a great mother and still believe that. i still believe that my choice was the right choice for the right time.
in my view i think at told maybe one other person, and i was drinking very heavily. so there you go. i think my question would be how we get these young women to feel like it is there responsibility and they should carry the responsibility with dignity. >> i don't understand the question. >> you mean wanting it is enough reason to have the abortion. it should be more vocal about that. we were talking earlier about part of what the problem is here, so many people who have had abortions do not feel like they can talk about it in there is an enormous part of the population that things
that don't know anyone who has ever had an abortion, but they do. one in three when. maybe that was getting it. >> one little story, which is that when i began this bookstore after i read, of woman came up to me and said, i had an abortion, i never told anyone except you i said, well, what do you think would happen? she says, i think she would probably tell me that she had an abortion to. but i think that there are ways in which we are locking ourselves up in silence when if we reach out a little bit we might learn that we are not alone serious suzie --
>> thank you all very much for being here. thank you all very much for joining us. is this a katha pollitt load in that both sides tend shortly after she leaves her if you all would like to a get your books signed we need you to move over there and thank you for joining us . [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] >> and that includes day one of book tv coverage of the
2014 texas book festival. if you missed any of our coverage it will be aired starting at midnight pacific you can view this schedule for day number two on our website, booktv.org. >> is there a nonfiction author or bulky would like to see featured on book tv? send us an e-mail, tweet us @booktv, or post on our wall , facebook.com/booktv. >> part of the process in this town has to be the engagements with people who are in political positions of bomb the hell do you may
not like. let's face it. governing is tough. means that you have to deal with people you may not like 4305 members of congress, 100 members of the senate all from different parts of the country, some smart, some not, some honest, some dishonest, someone to do the right thing, some don't. it is a major -- maxtor, a cross-section of america. then there are a lot of people, particularly today there are probably more in terms of numbers of people that are just very tough to deal with. and yet that challenged in legislation is to engage people. >> why doesn't the president do that? >> i think the president, you know, believes that part of it is that he presents an issue and the logic of an issue and that people should embrace it. you know, he is not -- the difference between bill
clinton and barack obama, those who are extremely bright, both capable, both, i think, are quick studies when you breathe them in terms of understanding issues. they ask great questions. deep down both want to do the right thing for the country, make no mistake about it. they want to do the right thing for the country. the differences, though, and loves the political engagement, loves the process of, you know, rolling up his sleeves and dealing with individuals. he loved politics, dealing with members. he knew every member's district. members would come in a comment he would say to them, you're running the wrong campaign. you're running on the wrong issues. let me tell you what you ought to run on, and he would tell them. so he was engaged in that process, and then makes a difference. i think president obama, you know, is not into that kind
of personal political engagement. to get it done, is like everything else, a personal process of basically ruling people, listening to them, understanding what their needs are, understanding how you can convince them what is in their interests to do the right thing. it is that entire process that ultimately results in getting things done, and that is where the president has to engage in terms of dealing with the issues that now confront him. >> you can watch this and other programs online at booktv.org. >> book tv asks bookstores and libraries throughout the country about the nonfiction books their most anticipating being published this fall. here is a look at the titles chosen by green light
bookstore in brooklyn, new york. congressman james cliburn will be joining us to talk about civil rights and to take your calls as well. we are pleased to be joined on >> we're pleased now to be joined it here on set outside the history and biography room by a former justice of the supreme court sandra day o'connor. this is her sixth book.me courtt of order. five books.
when did you discover you enjoyed writing? >> nothing changed, lots of things to write about and tell about. >> host: would be doing at the book festival? you are not talking about your book. >> not really. i know jim billington at the wall street -- my brother has a new book out and so jim told me i had to bring my brother so i said i would and that is why we are here. >> host: you are in conversation with alan d. a. your brother. what is his book about? >> guest: for a long time he had them in north dakota where he could take these and keep them for a while. the federal government had the
responsibility for them so he did that for quite a while. it was so simple. >> host: let's talk about out of water and some of the stories year. one of the first stories you tell is former chief justice john marshall and thomas jefferson were related and did not like each other. >> isn't that amazing? >> host: was the relationship? >> guest: it was amazing that they didn't like each other and it was so difficult to manage but they did. >> host: the marbury vs. madison case was daring president jefferson's tenure. exactly what did that case established? >> guest: i don't know that today we say much of anything.
>> host: it established the court -- >> guest: it was pleaded with the other two and given a lot of credibility which it needed. the court was still young and had yet to be accepted in the country as an equal voice to the other two branches. >> host: one of the things you write is marbury and madison in the justice's private dining room. >> isn't that something? >> host: some of the traditions you also talk about in your book, 3 x 3, why do justices centers that way? >> guest: 3 x 3. >> host: enter in groups of 3. >> guest: we actually don't. the fact of the matter is
justices behind the curtains, they are getting ready to enter and an equal division of the justices mean they invest 3-6-9 and there they are and they march in. >> host: the handshake before you go in, what happens? >> guest: for that is very important, let me shake your hand, to feel the warmth of someone's hand, you had a momentary bond but one that matters. when you have somebody's hand in your is it matters. wonderful way to trying to secure good will among the justices. very tough decisions to make some times. >> guest: you right in here is that you quit shaking hand of
one justice and will only grab his thumb. >> guest: that was because he grabbed my hand and i thought i was going to lose my hands. he was so strong, and i know he did not realize how he was hurting my hands so i had to do something to save my hand from this powerful thing by that justice. >> host: you don't talk about yourself much in this book but you are the first female justice on the floor. what do you remember about september 25th, 1981? >> guest: nothing special. >> host: that was your first day on the court. >> guest: i had the hope that my service on the court would be worthwhile, that i could make a
solid, significant contribution and i didn't know that day whether i could or not. you don't know how you are going to do, you don't know how you are going to get around with your colleagues, you don't know when you start what cases you're going to come before the court, you don't know how you will be challenged but my hope was i could do well enough that no one would be unhappy that they had a woman on the court, they wouldn't think that was a defect, that was important to me. and i could make a valuable lasting contribution. >> host: i will test your memory here all little bit. bill fulham who served as supreme court chief justice from 1888 to 1970. it is not a name that comes
readily to mind. >> guest: he is not particularly remembered for significant cases. he did all right but he wasn't there at a time he had to sign on to some incredibly important case and so he isn't particularly remembered. >> host: we all know roger taney. why do we know him? >> guest: he was in fair. what makes you think about him? you remember out of order. all the things he worked on. >> host: his relationship with president lincoln. is it important that chief justice and president along? >> guest: itself in some ways, the president will fill a vacancy on the court if there is one and i think certainly you
would want to be in a good relationship with the man who is going to fill that vacancy because you might be asked for an opinion, what do you think about so and so, i am considering so and so. is very important. >> host: what about congress? >> guest: congress is so big and diverse it doesn't matter. you hope jusce hope that there not going to do anything in particular that will cause unhappiness. .. arafat will cause and happiness among concourse and members of congress but that is not likely. it is a diverse body so that is okay. >> host: something the strikes people about justices is the friendships on the court because there are only nine of you. >> guest: you don't expect any particular relationships or
friendships but you want to keep things working at the court. that means it is better if you don't develop some animosity with one particular injustice that makes it harder to get a decision. you don't want i think every justice once things to be smooth enough that you can reach agreement on the issues that come to the court. >> host: justice sandra day o'connor, out of order. this is her fifth book. if you want to see, she wrote a book about being raised on the lazy b. ranch and was on c-span booknotes so you can watch it on line at booktv.org or at c-span.org. justice o'connor thanks for being with us on booktv. >> guest: thank you.