tv Ivo Daalder and James Lindsay The Empty Throne CSPAN November 11, 2018 9:10am-10:01am EST
so we start to end up with a world and do not this is true if you look at the videos you might wash on politics on youtube, is arts recommending more video steer. the person next year to you my have a completely different perception of america because of the self-selection of the feedback confirmation in the silos of what they're consuming from what you're consuming. >> 10:00 p.m. and sundays at 9:00 p.m. eastern and pacific tv on c-span2. all previous afterwards programs are available to watch online at booktv.org. >> ready to go? and from national public radio and i want to welcome you all to today's council on foreign relations book launch series
event. the book is the empty throne and i'm assuming you've all bought it. you can still buy it. i'm going to preside over today's discussion and i'm going to briefly introduce the co-authors. you probably have their bios. yes ambassador to nato. he was senior. he's had long distinguished career you can read about. we don't want to waste our time talking about it. senior vice president of director of studies in the greenberg chair here at cfr. he oversees the work of more than 27 follows in the studies program. before he came back to cfr thousand nine, he was the director of the robert center for international security and law at the university of texas. we are going to do, is talk
about 20 minutes and then we'll have questions. i just want to start by saying this book couldn't have been more timely. urgent, even. the question that i was have as a journalist covering the trump administration was whether trump was different in degree a crime. in some ways, the sister conservative republican. where he is really different is what you've written this book about. ejecting 70 years of u.s. leadership of the world order. it created a prosperity. a lot of satellite asking both of you, it's a vacuum. what are the real world consequences of america advocating his leadership role? what happened in the world since
trump was elected and decided american leadership was really a crummy deal for us? >> that's why it only right people whose name comes after me in the alphabet. even if they have a nobody. can't be daa. >> you got a lock on that. >> thanks so much for presiding. it's an important question. it's a very important question. about what the vacuum is. and how it can be felt. this a good news story, bad news story is a gets filled by people who don't care about our values. the appreciation of the space order. and who want to do something different. we are already seeing that emerging. with regards to china. and to some extent, russia.
as the u.s. which a withdraws, it's not involved in building coalitions and bringing people together to deal with global challenges, people are going to turn to us. and the chinese in particular are demonstrating a capacity of filling the vacuuming of the other along. whether through force or money or buying them off or by fear that they may be left behind, there filling the vacuum. you saw with tpp. the transpacific partnership where present walked out of that agreement on the third day in office after all he spent a lot of time sitting in the three days and decided that was the right thing to do. the chinese took advantage of that and they made their alternative to a higher priority. that's one thing. the bad people, the bad news.
the other is that perhaps, our friends and allies will start filling. has that as a second story. japanese and australian canadians and mexicans and others saying, if the u.s. is not there, we will not be part of it. they said if the u.s. is want to be there, it's their lost, not arcane but it's their loss. we're going to continue together to figure out whether we can maintain at least some of this trading regime. they are filling the gaps. the hope here is, beckons never say 12, if the vacuum dust stay for a while, not only the chinese and others who want to fill the gap, will do so to their advantage but maybe that's some of our allies will step up and take on greater responsibility which they should now be more capable of then when this was created.
>> jim, assuming the vacuum is eight years, not for, is there a silver lining, europeans should step up into more. should be left depended on us. is that possible? >> it is certainly possible but as we all know, the country should do is not necessarily what they will do or do do. article back to where he left off. another possibility with this vacuum that is created. no country is able to fill it. you end up returning to a world of great power competition. as a concern because the reason presidents roosevelt, truman, eisenhower, worked to get the real space or international order was to present a return to precisely that world of geopolitical competition of doctor eat dog politics.
the founding, present at the creation he was proven secretary of state, a generation had lived through world war ii but also word were one. that is left them with the recognition that if the great power politics competition, which you are likely to get not once but twice during the 20th century. devastating wars. the notion of american leadership sprang from that cold-blooded calculation. the united states took the view and i correctly so, american security and its values were intimately tied to the security of others. with the united states should do is to lead its friends and allies in solving call problems.
the intuition that if we helped others do well, we would do well also, which proves why over this past 70 years, that leadership we talk about in the book. that leadership has underscored american security and prosperity and it is the mistake today. >> may offer the counter narrative. he pulled out in paris and cdp in the around you. but he has a pull out of nato, the new nafta kind of looks a lot like the old after with tpp mixed them. so is it just letter it that is destabilizing or has he really done a lot of damage? >> there are two parts to that. one part is, it's only been 18 months. who knows what is going to happen 24 plus -- actually more than 18 months. we weren't really expecting the
united states to withdraw from the treaty. the president decided of the weekend that that's probably a good idea. probably didn't tell our allies that's what he's going to but that's what he is going to do. through a keeping that is a threat like terminating nafta. >> i don't know. we'll see. if that is the case. the other part of the -- one is we just don't know how much is more coming down the pike. i don't take anyone does. including anyone who works for him. the second piece which is important, is that take nafta, the process by which he goes through that by threatening to withdraw from treaty by going after the very strongly which is used against the mexicans, during the president's against the canadians, what they do run
trust, the canadians? it's creating a climate distrust and creating a sense among our allies and friends that maybe we can't rely on the united states. maybe we can't really work united states. maybe we need alternatives. the canadians have now created a diversification. i would you do that unless you think it's important? it's been -- even if the end result is to know terrible change from what it was before, the process by which you get there, is deeply destructive of your ability to lead. leading is about getting people to follow. doesn't matter who's in the driver seat, a masters in the backseat. less and less people are willing to follow. that's the problem. >> is an example where we wanted people to follow in the art?
assume they wanted to follow on the embassy to jerusalem. the world is not. note that your question, a lot of yeses, one of the problems we had is that everybody wants the cost of a decision to manifest themselves immediately. the world doesn't work that way. decisions have a long shadow and maybe years before you get the actual bill. let's go back and talk about some of these trade deals. yes, the president got deals, a deal with korean revised, free trade agreement course. we got a revision to -- trade war with europe. as you look at these, you ask yourself, not, did you get a good deal but did you get a good deal -- the price you pay for? when you hold up the president's
agreement today, the don't fare very well. let's take course the case of course, we got a revision in which the united states, the changes were exceptionally modest. doubling the quarter on the number of cars and american any factors sell into the korean market, double it. the only problem was, no american automobile manufacturer fits the current quarter. or let's look at nafta. you noted that nafta has a lot of tpp. we've had a negotiation with the community and the mexicans. we have created a lot of upset. they are trying to find ways to sell their products to people other than the united states to get a trade deal that looks a lot like when we had when the president entered in office because nafta was functionally renegotiated under tpp because
mexico and canada are part of the transpacific partnership. when you look at the new nafta deal, yes mca so that what's moving from the trump administration, actually makes trade less free and open. it's interesting for administration that is bright itself, slashing regulations across the board for business, they've upped the level of regulation in terms of auto content, making it harder for companies. they are going to have to be able to track all of this. i was just over the long-term, it's went to make american automobile manufacturers less, not more competitive. the tough international market. >> let me ask you about the trump administration and affects our politician. if you think he is a party of one, we've seen congress, push back. on nato.
they test russian sanctions, unanimously. you have top administration officials like madison, pens going around the world to tell our worst code, don't listen to him. we're still committed. my question is, do you think he will succeed in changing the republican party permanently on this into a isolation protection america first party can they ever go back to the previous definition of american leadership. >> what is it that yogi berra said about predictions? >> especially about the future. >> i'm a little bit rocky but i do think is changing the republican party but i wouldn't describe it necessarily as changing republican party, taking an eyelash isolation direction. as he talks about in the empty
throne, president trump certainly hit up on isolation themes during the course of the 2016 campaign. when he talked about foreign policy, he didn't talk about it the way senator ryan paul of kentucky, clearly in isolation. once a smaller footprint. matches the president trump had was, i'm willing to stay abroad if you're willing to pay me for it. he intended to transform america's online relationship not in terms of which are because in america's interest to do so but we do it because we should get paid for it. >> the protection right. >> these are your words. [laughter] but the president isn't talking about coming home. the whole issue of nato wasn't nato spending more so americans can spend less, it was americans are going to spend more and nato should as well. i wouldn't describe it as isolationist but it is quite
near certainly on trade, and the republican party in congressional leadership is rethinking its traditional support for opening up gets. traditional american approach and you get american products into the markets. he wants to emphasize keeping for products out of the american market. >> he is the only one in charge. there are lots who don't agree with him. issues like nato, trade, leadership and alliances. they still use that but it doesn't matter. our system when the president decides, this is what we are going to do, that's what we do. i think rex and hr mcmaster condo we might at the present was going to different direction, then they want to go.
they either get fired or they leave. you can't underestimate the importance of the president who is increasingly confident in his view about how to conduct the presidency, to compare to the interviews that he does today to the once he did 15, 16, 17. he's a self-confident person who things he got it. he knows how to be president. i think that was the most noteworthy thing. the president, i know how to do this, so go away. my senses that's how the staff is feeling with it. he's going to be there and in charge. he's very much going to do it the way he wants to do. no matter what my pants tells him to do. >> you do a lot of pulling and we've seen support, what did you say the other day? globalism great again.
immigration court. it's american leadership in the world go up, i don't know if you don't own young people, but what about public opinion? of a tempest? >> we've been doing polls since 1974. we did one egg in the summer. jim was part of our advisory group and internationalism is back. for reasons that may or may not have to do with trump, you don't really know the cause and effect. but there is more support for strong american role in the world. since i see 74 with the exception of 9/11. there's more support for trait, or support for alliances, terrorists and agreement and the iran agreement and for supporting our allies overseas. then we seen in a very long time. it's kind of like oxygen. you don't really know it's there until it's no longer there. you don't miss it until it's no longer there. in terms of american leadership and leaving it's important to
work with others. it's the absence, perhaps, the hypothesis, of leadership, the cost that comes with that. america is all of a sudden saying we don't like this perspective. it's not just democrats. it's not just independence. it's republicans, too. particularly republicans -- >> if it doesn't have jumps name on it -- >> even though those who have a very favorable you of donald trump, a majority of those think that nafta was a good agreement. there is a disconnect between the blood the public thinks and what the president is doing. >> does that suggest this could be reversed? >> whether it gets reversed or not, is partly in what happens here in the united states. but it's also a function that what others outside the united
states one. let's take the u.s. situation first as she points out, the data in chicago polls is striking. it's not just about the broad question should america be involved in the world, let's take two specific examples. the iran nuclear deal and the paris crime dream. the president is against both. he took the united states out of both. he has gone around the country talking about how bad those deals were, how they hurt americans interest. what is interesting, is that support for both of those agreements has gone up, not down. that's where the notion of -- >> republicans. >> including republicans, the idea that trump has been good for internationalism. let's look abroad. i think one of the concerns i would have is that either that others give up on us or they will come away with a very different vision of who they
think we are, and we think we are. you think americans should ever underestimate how much political capital they built up around the world the united states defeated nazi germany and stood up to the soviet union. people didn't forget that. over the course of this -- it was never the case that the united states always got it right. united states make big mistakes. iraq. we made those mistakes, they were required by leadership, anything, our friends and allies don't do that. i'm old enough to recall when people in the streets and one really good french red wine into the gutter to protest the fact that the french opposed u.s. invasion of iraq. they came around to unfortunately, far too late. my worry is that for more and more people, fewer and fewer
people around the world were born in a shadow of world war two or the cold war. one at a time when the image of america is crafted by or shaped by the iraq war, rising hostility toward immigrants, a subprime mortgage crisis that nearly but on the international financial system. and we haven't talked about the so far, administration that is turning a blind eye to obvious human rights violations around the world, most notably but not solely, the murder of jamaal. >> that's where i was going to ask one last question. first, is this with the saudis have done with impunity, only worse or is this different in kind? is is what happens when the throne is empty? >> it happens, recently, --
>> clearly is the case, the first visit he was made as president was the saudi arabia. first time the president hasn't gone to mexico or canada is the first trip. we had fights with mexico and canada and then went to saudi arabia. the trip in which he wouldn't lecture them about human rights. he then subsequently stood by when they pocketed carter, he supported that. even though his administrator -- he stood by when the crown prince imprisoned hundreds of businessmen and royals. he stood by when they kidnapped prime minister. he did by when a tweet by the canadian foreign minister resulted in the breaking of relationship with canada. so it wasn't a strange
regulation on the part of the saudi regime to think they could stand by if they murdered a journalist. and get away with murder. literally. in that sense, you can't draw direct line but there is no reason to think the crown prince was gone away with everything he's done up to this point, would be able to get away with it. after all, there is a direct line to the white house. they didn't have to talk to the state of department, they knew if they talk to the president or his son-in-law, they would get stuff done. that doesn't mean the president is responsible for the murder of the journalist but the saudis are responsible for. they are the only ones responsible for. it does mean that you have to think through strategically, the consequences of your actions. particularly in the united states.
when we are silent about human rights abuse or worse, when the united states says the press is the enemy of the people, when the united states goes and one dictator after another is embraced in one form or another, remember, saudi's, questions and the north koreans, russians, have all killed people abroad. robin, kim jong-un are now quite friends of the president. what is the message that we are sending? even if that is not the intent. that is the reality. >> i would like to invite our members to join the conversation, couple of reminders, everything that is said in his room is on the record. you'll be giving in microphone, you should stand up and state your name and affiliation and please only ask one question at a time.
>> thank you for a discussion. looking forward to reading the book. what a begin to repair the situation? to start with alliances, how do we rebuild in 2020s? >> that is excellent question. i think we have to do a lot of repairing. the me take a step back. one of the things we have to keep in mind is that this space order has been need of repair for quite some time. he became president, a lot of people -- i can understand why after 70 years, the rules space order has been showing its age. the united states has made disastrous foreign policy decisions. iraq, most audibly. you have countries, like russia,
never accepted this idea. they wanted to go back to the geopolitical competition with fears of interest, they would get to throw their weight around. of the enough, this precisely because it did what it was supposed to do. it made countries more wealthy. it made countries freer and one of the things we saw is that power got distributed. it was not the case of the united states by itself dominated it. created a whole new series of problems. globalization, lots of problems and didn't stay home, didn't win across borders. a lot of international institutions that can adapt. a variety of things that i mentioned, iraq, mortgage base financial crisis, cast judgment on the wisdom and judgment of u.s. policymakers. part of but we have to do is get our friends to do more. and again, capable of doing it. they spent time talking about
how what they can do, i would focus on what they are already doing. he knows more having been ambassador of data but they are fighting work of defense. if you like a trade, they are trying to address causing concerns that the trump administration had. even though our friends and allies are willing to join us for example, very real problems posed by chinese predatory trade practices. the trump administration has been willing to take them up on it. it creates one of the essential ironies of the trump administration. you have a president who campaigns saying, our friends are free writing on our tales. they are not doing enough and now as president, is not asking to do anything, is going off and taking the burden on his
shoulders. rather than seeing force in numbers, is trying to do unilaterally. think it means is when to make it less effective. i also think part of what happens to people who believe in the rules -based order have to get in the habit of expanding to americans why it works for them. that is part of a try to do in the book, to expand why some policy prescriptions the found sound really good are disastrous. paris, the argument is, the president is putting paris the place, american workers back to work. everything we know about economics tells us that it may help in the short run, they will be costly in the wrong run. for example paris on aluminum and steel. he talked the ceo ford motor company. what does he tell you? cost us a billion dollars. what is going to restructure people getting laid off.
race state of iowa, having lived here for a dozen years, i will pork farmers are looking forward to being able to finally sell their great i will pork into the japanese market because it tpp. the president walked out of tpp. japanese said, okay, you don't deal with us, we would do a deal with european union. can't seller port in japan and the europeans, it's europeans that's going to going and undercut american fork. that's why those decisions matter part of a have to do is expand to people how things are connected. >> what you think the extent of trump is the symptom rather than the cost of this american global leadership. you can make the point that
barack obama talks about free writers, to asia, the same time, you also have a clear populist nationalism, not just in europe in the unites states but as well. is there a historical way that the two of you discern in the research that you are doing about this book? >> in many ways he's said from-cause. he is writing and directing away. he's certainly not trying to the other way. in terms of both populism and nationalism. i think let's not underestimate and we don't talk enough about nationalism. which really happening in europe, which you know as well as i do, if not better, nationalism the sense that we need to stand up for the nation. it's happening here too. it has in many ways, it is the
same kind of sentiment that existed in the 20s and 30s. it is coming back. the rules -based order was designed with very much knowing in mind that that was one of the nations to think about nationalism and compared to the damage of one against the other. as opposed to the compared advantage of working together to deal with common problems. if you undermine that order, it will ride. by definition, it's how it works. we know where that ends. ended in the 1930s and it terrible way. it was why we decided why men and unfortunately, they were all men at the time, decided to create a system. it was the glue that puts them together. to fight against the very tendencies that are always there.
there within the 50s and 60s. and 70s and 80s. they've always been there. to fight back against it because we knew the consequences were. i think what we are having now is a sense of amnesia. we don't remember what the 30s was like. we don't remember how bad it can be. for 70 years, we had this extraordinary success. international system that had no great power everybody became more secure, or prosperous and free. without that was the natural order of things and it actually wasn't. the required real day in and day out activity by farsighted leaders on both sides, both sides of the pacific and atlantic to make happen. when the key glue says enough. don't want to pay for it anymore, it's going to -- it's a huge challenge to the system. >> i'm with a years institution
of formerly a foreign service officer. i have a question about your chicago council -- are you confident that you are able to capture trump space population in getting those opinions about foreign policy works over you just reaching the foreign policy elite? that's one of my concern because i have a feeling that his base really doesn't care about foreign policy. in the broader sense that we do. what kind of president do you think we need after trump to clean up the mess? [laughter] >> the first one is easier to answer the second one. i leave that to him. [laughter] it's a broad representative
sample of the total population. includes a representative sample of pro- trump base. a strong percentage and the remarkable thing and it doesn't matter whether you look at trade, alliances, whatever. it's a big difference. between trump supporters never burials. that's where it is. two points to emphasize. first, and importantly, the american people are not experts. on foreign policy. you cannot overestimate to agree to which they know about foreign policy. they shouldn't. don't underestimate how much they understand. they do understand very fundamental content. pulling for 50 years demonstrates that.
americans do not vote on the basis of foreign policy. it's extraordinarily rare and requires a huge political crisis or foreign-policy crisis to play a role. place neural. if you look at the election campaign and added everything else, you know that is the case. just because there is a sentiment publicly, that says you can have an international foreign policy, doesn't mean you can't win on a platform of protectionism and what donald trump has. it does mean transition to the next question. there is at least a basis for having an internationalist foreign policy session mean you don't have to become protections. election. there had to be against tv to win. you can be in favor of it if you make the case. you're just not going to win election.
>> to timing. i want to chime in. you need to be careful on who you pick as your predecessor. [laughter] by that standard, i think the next president could be the luckiest man or woman around. i say that for couple of reasons. there are a lot of our friends and allies who very much hope that america will return to the kind of foreign-policy it has pursued over the last 70 years. even those who disagree and within the parties, the right issue to prioritize what the right tactics or, american leadership was something that resonated around the world. you go back to public opinion, you can continue to see it. americans don't contribute. people don't care for the trump administration. if you ask them, which you see russia or china as a global
leader, rather than the united states, it's pretty clear the answer is no, they don't want. the big question, the question that is hanging over all this is, who the next president be? what we he or she think to do? if i had a concern, in washington d.c., the conventional wisdom is locked in the public wants to come home again. the public is isolation. the public is tired of the burdens of global leadership. people continue to tell themselves that and that dictates policy. american seldom vote in large numbers for president, members of congress on foreign policy issues. what the public does do is it gets president considerable discretion. considerable room for maneuver to chart to foreign-policy. whoever is campaigning in 2020, i hope they actually channel
some of what donald trump did in 2016. in the following sentence. trump one in good part because he dared to do what the consensus said he couldn't or shouldn't do. i hope candidates wanted in 2020, take on this notion which i think is on, americans understand they have deep stakes in the world. whether they are going to achieve their superior and prosperity and currently, whether or not we can get others to go along with us. i think americans understand the sense of global response ability united states can exercise and should exercise. >> what if somebody sold tpp assist group china bill? >> obama, without using those words, right away. >> i families here. set a good example. >> i wanted to push further on
the last question. what is the short list for the next president. taking suggestion that we don't know will happen in the next two to six years. but assuming the general line of policies will be consistent with what we have seen to now. over the short list look like? i do think that, i don't think it will be easy on trade. to unwind the switch. there will be backlash of goodwill, how should the next president use that? what is the short list of two, three, four items? what would you recommend? >> let me, let's get back to star question. i think we have to understand one thing that president trump does not understand. the global competition for ideas
and power, we haven't an advantage over everybody else. we have ours. we're friends. russians and chinese have clients. it's very, very different. so the first thing i would do is to figure out how do you maintain strength and transform our relationship? they need to be transformed. president trump is right. the time for our allies to do more on defense, to carry more burden has come. in fact, it's past. obama said writers aggravate me. truman said it was time for the europeans to pay more. this is not a new thing. it is time that more of that burden is taking up. the one thing that makes us different from everybody else, the one thing that allows us to have a role -based system is to
be leaders allies in france. it's true that the united states is not as powerful as it was militarily or economically as it was in 1945. if you take our allies and added to a half, we are more powerful. economic terms, military terms and we are in value terms. i think number one is, understanding how important it is to work with other countries. all over the world. our friends are not just formal military islands, they are in africa, all parts of the world. it makes that part of who we are. then sometime during diplomacy. torch talks about diplomacy as grounding. going over to make sure the weeds were no longer growing over and taking out the plants. spending time there.
how can you do it crisis management in turkey and saudi arabia? you don't have an ambassador. it's not the democrats in the senate's fault because they can't go on the bassinet until he is nominated. it has not happened. it's that rebuilding of our central capacity to equip other countries who are on our site. is fundamental to rebuilding understanding in the world. >> frequently. it's not going to be easy but when his politics been easy? it's a hard business as you know, for your own career. the other thing is, i think it will get easier for an american president to make the case the american people to overcome political criticism in terms of pursuing a internationalist foreign policy. if our friends and allies actually do more. we've written calling on them to do that. they need to do it is because
it's in their interest to do so and if they do more, they do more than is tangible, they can be seen, it makes it easier for americans lawmakers and politicians to make the case skeptical members of the american public. >> one month. one more. >> thank you so much for this discussion. i interested in the longer-term impact. withdrawing from fields, which is long-standing. does this have long-term effect on trust and america? with the trump administration or down the road, no matter who is president in two or six years. what is the long-term effects of that? is it something that can be regained, trust and american leadership? >> leadership at a score depends on trust. is the core of our ability to get things done. get people to do things that they otherwise don't to do, for coercion for the dubai trust.
we've done it for 70 years on the basis of trust. a trust is damaged. if not broken. we know is trust breaking in a marriage is hard to get back together, it will easy to break and it's difficult to rebuild. the longer this goes on, the more difficult it will be to rebuild the trust. not only because of policies of the particular president but also because if the american people to decide that seen it and they like what they saw and they want to do it again, it becomes more difficult. for people to say is not just the president we have a problem with, maybe part of the country. that's a judgment will come back to haunt the country, this country down the road. >> thank you very much -- oh,
okay. no more. they give her much. but you all the chance to continue this discussion and the reception outside. is that correct? >> yes. [applause] [inaudible conversations] here's a look at some books being published this week. in becoming former first lady, michelle obama, reflect on her life and time in the white house. republican congressman, steve place of wheat louisiana, recounts the 2017 shooting a congressional based on game practice and wounded himself and others in his road to recovery in back in the game. in heirs of the founders, historian h.w. brands, profiles congressman henry clay, john calhoun and dinner webster and
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