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tv   Washington Journal  CSPAN  April 26, 2011 7:00am-10:00am EDT

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funds also offer the tracks user locations and later we are joined by the former fema director and will stop with our studentcam winner whose video documentary looks at the government's response to the tornado that hit his home town. that is at 9:15 eastern. ♪ host: violence escalates in syria. president obama takes further action against president assad. he could levy sanctions against the country. mississippi governor haley barbour says he will not run for president, opening up the field of potential gop contenders who have yet to decide whether to throw their hat into the ring. if we continue with the coverage
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of the oldest documents to be released from wikileaks. it released documents on the prisoner assessments at guantanamo bay. we want to hear from all of you this morning on the role of whistleblowers. we covered that event and we want to know from all of you out there, what you think of people like daniel l's parent and the pentagon papers. here is a critic of them from that london and then. the former director of that information systems at the pentagon. >> as people, we have developed a very rich language and nomenclature that describes people who reveal secrets. we call them a snitch. a rat. a square. a trader. or a whistle-blower.
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these are not terms that i had invented. these third terms that we had invented a as a society to describe these people who revealed the secrets. >> that his opinion about whistleblowers. we want to hear from you. this is what julian assange had to say at that event in london. >> whistleblowers face difficulty. they end up in prison, they certainly often lose their jobs and their employment prospects. when they can speak anonymously, they can feel proud of themselves and their acts and continue on. host: what is the role of whistleblowers? that is the question today. republicans and democrats and independents, there was a law
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passed in 1989 to protect whistle-blowers. here is what it said. it prohibits reprisals against those who disclose waste, fraud, and abuse or illegality. they're protected only if the disclosure is not required to be kept secret for national defense or foreign affairs. and they are entitled to back pay,, and satori damages, and other remedies. this is for federal employees if they disclose to anyone, their manager or anyone else, information that they feel represents waste, fraud, or abuse and illegality. what you think there role of a whistle-blower is? go ahead. caller: i believe that there really should not be any need for whistle-blowers. but since there is, i believe the law is necessary.
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if corporations, governments, and organizations were transparent in their operations, instead of clandestine and trying to hide everything, they just start off from a nefarious position and go from there. that is really wrong. everything should be above board, open, fair and square. host: go to whistle blow blowers.org. they have a timeline from back in the 1970's and you can go all the way through and see who has been categorized as a whistle- blower throughout our history. in the congress, there is legislation aimed at enhancing that 1989 whistle-blower
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protection act. this is from the website. the senate reintroduce is this enhanced legislation. it is unanimous so that -- it is identical to that passed by the house except for one exception, the disclosure of trivial illegality, which is minor, inadvertent, and occurs during the conscientious carrying out of official duties. it includes protections that the house removed last december after objections by one senator. this website has learned that over the past few weeks, they secretly asked republican leadership to block the legislation and it was killed on december 2 by a secret hold. that is according to whistleblower.org.
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it would systematically overhaul free-speech rights for government workers. it could cancel the affect of a court decision that limits federal world -- federal workers free-speech rights while carrying out their job duties. it also provides those covered by the whistle protection act access to jury trials to challenge major disciplinary action. it carries on. you can go to the website. a democrat, we are talking about the role of whistleblowers. caller: i cannot believe, i don't know who that man was talking about, a rat in a snitch. he went down the whistle-blower? that came out of organized crime. those were people who were underhanded, double minded. just criminals. he has got the nerve to cost patriots those kinds of names.
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when you go back to vietnam, good lord, the lies that we were told. 68,000 dead, and the american taxpayer still paying for that live. then george bush lettuce into a lie with the iraqi people. and you have americans who can come forth and expose our government lying with our tax dollars. we cannot say anything about it? go all over the world and killed three people and when the retribution comes back on us, the people who tell us are called rasps and snitches? this is pathetic. host: what you think about julian assange in the wikileaks web site? caller: that man needs to get a medal and that young man, barack obama saying that he committed to prime when he is not on trial? it is sad, and it is ugly, we need to stand up and do something about it. other than let people call them
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rats and snitches. they are protecting us from our online, crooked, underhanded politicians. host: let's go to kentucky. caller: i agree with the gentleman just talking on the phone. they should not be considered rats. i believe it has angered me, and too. i believe that the guy should have a metal what he has done, getting all the information about crimes that should be prosecuted. philip morris had a whistle- blower command and to care of that. and i agree with that gentleman just on before me. they should not be considered rats. all companies should be -- they
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should be prosecuted for things that are, you know, wrong. cheating the government, cheating the people -- the government is the people. and that is all i have to say. host: you think julian assange should be categorized as a whistle-blower? caller: do i think he is a whistle blower? i think he has given the knowledge to the people that things that are being hidden from the people of america, and not just of america, but people that are blinded by the sights of things that are going on, that we do not know about. and then we go into war is with people for reasons we do not even know. host: the website composes the definition of a word whistle- blower. this is what they say.
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he discloses information that they reasonably believe is evidence of illegality, gross waste, fraud, mismanagement, abuse of power, to roll wrongdoing, or a substantial and specific danger to public health and safety. they speak out to rectify the situation. this is a story written by mike calderon back in december. "stop calling wikileaks a whistle-blower." it is provided hundreds of thousands of documents. several are using one word to describe the secretive organization, whistleblowers. he goes on to say this. h-p spokesman told us in december that are description uses the on that name.
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the story goes on to talk about several news organizations that have stopped using the term to describe julian assange. that's going to stephen, an independent here in michigan. caller: i think it is about time that these whistleblowers had a chance to speak. these people that want to cover up their corruption and everything else, i think that it is time that they paid the price, it seems that we are
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being stolen and lied to on a daily basis, and you've got a lot of -- you want to call them snitches. i call them lifesavers because people died from these lies that are being told. host: a democrat in newark, new jersey. caller: i was a soldier in the united states army during operation joint endeavor. i came across a group of officers defrauding the government via getting a close this issue, and it started here in the united states. once they were deployed in the theater, there really came down on it because we no longer were in the united states. finally when i got back home, i was able to go to civ and tell my story, very detailed, and i do not have time.
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i ended up with high anxiety, depression, and i am not compensated for it, but i will never forget that experience. not only was i working for the government, but i was in a combat situation where i had to put all that aside and concentrate on my job in order to make this mission happen. returning home, it took 10 years for the cid to finally find out that this was not the company level, to where they were disbanded. and in those same years, it was very hard as a civilian to try to function until recently. i think whistleblowers should have an opportunity to say what they have to say, although i do not agree with wikileaks. wikileaks, they give that information of the government, what we do -- that is different.
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whistleblowing, that is just putting information out there that most people would not have. they haven't come but they know it will cause a ruckus, and so it is a little different. what i u.s. more positive. they came down on me so hard, i had to backtrack what i did wrong. and in backtracking, i found out what they were doing wrong. that is whistleblowing. wikileaks went into government files, things that were not supposed to be exposed. i do not care what the government is doing, this is our government. this is how we function. i'm sure he understood that. i think that part is completely different. but i am glad that since i came out as a whistleblower, i hope that people getting courage to to reveal information that is like the description says, defrauding the government, you
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are doing something to hurt the system. host: at the time this was going on, were you aware of the laws that protected you? caller: no, actually, i think military people, once you are deployed for whatever reason, the peace or war, the general information of the general public is not really expose to you unless you go online. i have been in the military since 1984 and got out in 2004. i was part of the military when it was not computerized and then when it was. there was an era where you could not get updated information that came out of the united states. host: this is the latest on the wikileaks story. to get my dilemma. -- gitmo dilemma.
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this is a jay carney statement from the white house. this does not make them new to us than they were part of the materials the obama administration poured over during its guantanamo review in 2009. it condemns the release of documents. it warned of possible consequences. there could be an impact on operations -- as the to chantilly, va., the republican line. good morning.
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caller: i want to thank you for the program. i do not call them whistleblowers. i call them truth tellers. just like jesus, he came to tell the truth. the guy with wikileaks, he should get a medal. he did something that not too many of us are willing to do. it takes a lot to do what he did. my favorite whistle-blower, thanks to him i am alive right now. i lost weight, and i will never get sick anymore after i got into a contract with this guy. kevin trudeau. he has lots of information. he is a whistle-blower. he is not afraid of the government. the government is trying to put him into jail because he wrote a book that reveals things that
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they do not want you to know. and they are trying to put him in jail. host: a democrat in detroit, michigan. good morning. caller: i am all for whistle- blowers. the wikileaks guy, i think it is good to have checks and balances on all this going on in the world. but i talk to your screener, and i said i was for whistleblowers, and he cut me off. other than that, i enjoy most of your calls. they have a great station and god bless you. host: balkan raton, florida, welcome to the conversation. caller: i frankly think that he is giving away our military secrets. our men and women are fighting for us over in foreign countries.
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i think he belongs in jail. host: you see a difference between him and others in the past two has spoken out against our government, against corporations? caller: yes, i do. i honestly do. he needs some kind of military trial and needs to be brought to america and be held on trial for leaking these things and putting our men and women in danger, as well as -- i do not know how he got disinformation, but it is a horrible thing that he has done. i am a first-time caller. and i'm really excited to be on c-span. host: ron is a democrat in north carolina. go ahead. caller: i think julian assange is a hero and bradley manning, president obama should apologize
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for what he said on mass of tv. they are exposing lies about this administration and the past administration getting us into our right. they want to shut these people love. they do not want us to know how corrupt they are. host: you would consider him a whistle-blower? caller: yes, i did. host: steve, a republican in last talent -- in lancaster. caller: on the whistleblowing thing, i tried to do some of that myself against the corporation. , duracell battery corporation. we've got millions of pounds of mercury in the creeks here. they finally boil down to, they told me that if i did not like the way the laws were, i would have to go to congress. i do not understand why the epa would send you to congress to report dumping millions of pounds of mercury into the
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ground down here and land cancer, south carolina. people down here thought i was awful for doing it for that. they would not respond to me or give me any help and this was eight years ago. when i reported this on c-span, i went to the epa and i even called washington, d.c. and they gave me a weapons of mass destruction number. host: conn, at independence. caller: alice fired by j.b. hunt transportation for refusing -- i qualified for federal whistleblowing protection. basically they told me -- i want my job back and they tell me that there was not any way to get my job back. j.b. hunt basically said, they
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paid me $35,000 hush money to go away. i offered very generously for them to keep their money and i want my job back. they refused. host: isaac, can you walk us through how you get what snowblower protection? host: it is a truck driver's responsibility to refuse an unsafe dispatch. if there's anything wrong with the vehicle, the truck driver is liable for the condition of the vehicle. they terminated me because i refused a trailer that had the turn signals not operating correctly. if you put on your turn signal, this is the situation. sometimes they do not work. host: ok. caller: i am trying to protect
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the motoring public and j.b. hunt terminated me for that. host: how did you go about filing under the whistle-blower protection act? caller: i went to the u.s. department of labor, other should division, and i met all the criteria, and the investigation has been over a year. it is just getting started right now. host: ok, so potentially they are going to pay you back pay? caller: they did not want to pay the entire back pay. they wanted to pay me a lesser amount, which i would have to basically pay back the unemployment. if you get a settlement and collect unemployment, you have to pay it back. how have just enough to pay the taxes. i would walk away with nothing. the terms of the release, i had
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it in my hand, and i would have to give up so much more, i would not be able to have this conversation with you today. i could not appeal to the media. i refuse to. host: so what happens next? caller: i am still waiting for the osha investigator for his findings. we will take it from there. i could take it to federal court, but i'm hoping it does not have to go that far. i am hoping j.b. hunt will do the right thing and see that i am a safe driver and give me my job back. but their actions are telling the public that they would rather root out a whistleblower and make an example of him then send the message to other drivers not to try this.
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host: have you hired a lawyer? caller: i did have a lawyer. we had at pulling out. i am searching for another attorney right now. host: we move on to eric, a democrat in pennsylvania. what are you thoughts of the role of the whistle-blower? caller: i was a whistle blower myself. our to the steel mill, abuse by union workers. host: and how did all turn out? caller: the union pressured the company to demote me and i was demoted. my job, i am retired, and i was a long time ago. host: the you agree with the whistle-blower protection act? is it adequate? caller: they should give the guy a medal. host: we're talking about legislation pending in the
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congress, according to the matthew wicks -- "after the storm -- website, and it provides whistleblower act to those who refuse to violate the law. it creates specific protection laws for scientific freedom, making it of abuse of a party to misrepresent the results of federal research, and it removes the loophole that would have excluded anti-retaliation protection for disclosure of trivial illegality, which occurs during the conscientious carrying out of official duties. it restores the unqualified " reasonable lead" standard established in the 1978 civil service act to qualify for the protection. kathy is a republican, good morning. caller: i think the wikileaks are not -- they do not have very much wisdom.
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i think the endanger lives and that is terrible. but when i read the first time they put out their information, i read it and thought, this is stuff that should have been in the newspapers. and it should of been reported on by a journalist. but we do not have that going on in our country any more. they are pretty much all in the back pockets of the corporations and the government. so we do need whistleblowers in this country. i just read that the obama administration will spend $200 million in propaganda supporting and getting out their propaganda on obamacare to convince the public that it is the best thing since sliced bread. whether it is the bush administration or the obama administration, we need people out there that will tell us the truth and give us the facts instead of like the obama administration with libya
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saying, it was a connecticut -- kinetic exerciser something like that? anyway, i am disappointed with journalist. we need to have people tell the truth so that we can know what is going on. host: in other news, "wall street journal" frontpage. inside of the "washington post," president of bonnet contemplating sanctions against syria. the bush administration imposed stiff financial sanctions --
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that is on the situation in syria this morning. newspapers reporting on that. also this morning, the caller referred to the health care law passed under president obama. here is "usa today" with many of the newspapers having this. the supreme court rejected a request from virginia officials to hear the constitutionality of the federal health-care law passed last year, winning the battle to play up first in lower appeals court.
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we are talking about the role of whistleblowers. haddam, the democratic line, illinois. caller: thank you, c-span. i am from ghana originally. i learned that our government is aware of the drug dealing. through wikileaks, we have found that the government of ghana is aware of the drugs taking place. [unintelligible] yesterday i read also on the radio, i heard on the radio,
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that the president's wife has received a $2 million loan, and it would buy these student loans and make money. the government is lying to us. foreign governments, american government, everyone is lying to us the taxpayers. host: butler, tennessee, a republican. your thoughts. caller: i am an old man, but i have seen -- i have heard lying most of my life. i am an ex-veteran, i have been in law enforcement, and there is been lying about this government. of course i am right wing show, you do not want whistleblowers, i understand that, but the point is, you have to have them or we would be in worse shape than we are right now. wikileaks is definitely a
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whistle-blower. that poor boy they have got in the prison, but there is something wrong with this. if the government is going to lie to you, then we are going to have to have people like that bringing the truth out. thank you. host: ben bernanke, the federal reserve chairman, will be giving his first news conference. the fed sweating the details. mr. bernanke will try that focus on summing up the decisions of the meeting that will be taking place, the board of 12 regional fed bank presidents and the current governors, rather than his own thoughts. he will talk for 45 minutes, maybe a bit longer. that will limit attendance to those who represent news organizations credited by congress and only one port news organizations. that leaves it open to hundreds of news organizations.
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mr. bernanke is taking questions from the -- has taken questions from the national media before. we will have coverage of that here on c-span, to 3:00 p.m. on wednesday, live coverage. it's good to michigan, michael, an independent. caller: i feel that wikileaks is definitely a dangerous thing. it is telling us -- it outrages countries and puts our troops in dangerous. however, i feel that we need some sort of whistleblowing, especially in congress. i think that the congress has sold as out of the years. their votes are bought and paid for. if we had more whistleblowing, we may not have had the economic crisis. these corporations that pay $0, they take all the money out, we
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need some whistleblowing in congress. but wikileaks is a dangerous thing. host: in politics for 2012, this is "usa today" with the news that haley barbour will not run for president. it was the first of several to be announced the next few months, quickening the lethargic race for the republican nomination. it was a difficult zero arsenal choice, said barbour. it says that grover norquist, leader of of americans for tax reform, could see him as a white house chief of staff for a vice- president. ron paul is expected to announce today the creation of a presidential exploratory committee. this could trump those who have
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not made a decision whether to run. and they notably talk about mixed daniels, the governor from indiana. other politicians news. here is a new poll about donald trump running for president. he is fired up but he likely will not be hired. broad resistance, 63% of americans, including 43% of republicans saying they would not vote for trump for president. in the same poll, 38% say that obama was definitely born in the u.s.. 15% say that he was probably born in another country. 9% say that he was definitely born elsewhere. manhattan, credit is a democrat.
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what is the role of whistleblowers? caller: if you are a diplomat and you are with your counterpart and you have been given the mission and the person you're talking to tends to be a nincompoop or is not getting what you're getting at, sometimes you have to appeal to their vanity, or whatever their money situation might be. you would not want that exposed after you try to do something for your country. but at the same time, i would like when your best friend puts underclothes and says how do i look? do you always tell the truth about certain situations? hollen looked like it to that if you are on the diplomatic mission. if you are sending messages back to the secretary of state or to the president, you may know what your personal opinions laid out in front of the world about how you feel about these people.
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even though you are trying to work in the interest of the world, but mostly for the united states. host: an update on gabrielle giffords here in the "new york times." she will be attending the shuttle launch on friday. she will be joined with co- worker, not to mention president obama and his family. she will watch and the restricted area and interact with few people. doctors who treated her in tucson were invited as well. it goes on to say that she will remain at a public view since the shooting and friday will be no different. the congresswoman had heard that paul r. rossi were being offered as much as $200,000 for a photograph of ms. giffords. she still has visible cards.
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several photographs have been released from her staff. none of them show her face and they were released after approval by her husband. the part of her skull that was removed to relieve pressure from brain swelling had not yet been restored, but that does not pose a problem for her to travel. the only problem would be if she were to fall. but if she were feeling weak, there would be a wheelchair for her. that is about congresswoman gabrielle giffords. lisa, an independent. caller: who sponsored that person was speaking in the beginning? will is the name of that man and is he a government official? i also think it is dangerous to hold back that protection law --
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not for wikileaks, but for the whistle blower. host: the event was sponsored in the london. it was sponsored by the frontline club, and promotes independent journalism and is a registered magazine. if you want to watch the whole event, go to our web site, c- span.org, and to our video library in the upper right-hand corner of the website. you can plug in whistleblowers and it will likely come up. as the new york. a democrat, good morning. caller: i am in favor of whistleblowing. but regardless if you are or not, every american regards a fair trial. they should not be locked away in prison or anywhere without having access to our justice system. that is america.
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host: washington, d.c., and jim, an independent. caller: a lot to talk about the wikileaks founder. for us to think that he is exposing all of these things, whatever. fine. but the fact is, you have a private man who gives up hundreds of thousands of documents that are sacred to the u.s. military. he not only exposed -- he might expose some illegalities, but the fact is, he is exposing truth movements, and also the informers that are helping the united states, and by doing that, there is one of the retribution they will come upon those people and their families as a result. it is not just exposure.
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this guy explicitly wanted to echo out there and get after -- pushout all these documents. host: we will talk about this for five more minutes. we want to show you some other headlines. ukraine marks the chernobyl anniversary today. this is from the australian broadcasting corporation. a shortfall of $2.6 trillion to pay retiree benefits. this headline in the sports section of "usa today." a judge rules in favor of nfl players. the threat of irreparable harm, an abrupt end to the blackout period -- to the lockout. roger goodall, the commissioner of the national football league, he writes a piece today in the
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"wall street journal," and about the future if the players win. he is writing against the judge's decision. billy, the republican line. good morning. caller: i am all for whistle- blowers. host: we are listening. caller: we've got families of whistleblowers down here, two brothers locked up in jail. host: ok. you have to turn your television down. you're getting the feedback and it is confusing in. the song -- let's go on to rising sun, indiana. caller: good morning. i do not think the wikileaks thing, i do not call the whistleblowing. they are just throwing a lot of trash out. whistle blowers are very
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important, though. they tell when people are being hurt, when people are taking advantage of people, so the whistleblowing i want to see -- is an abomination. that is the type of whistleblowing i want to see. host: the headline on the story, ahead of another governor bid. let's go to riverside, california, joe, an independent. the morning. are you with us? caller: yes. i was a whistle-blower 10 years ago. i have been prosecuted ever
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since, some three different agencies in southern california that are bound and determined to keep me quiet, because i caught them artificially pumping up the land value in southern california for regulatory actions, increasing the land value to try to generate more revenue for the municipal governments. host: are there laws that you try to site to protect yourself? caller: 0, yes. the whistle-blower protection act. the false claim acts in the state of california which was imposed upon california by the federal government. the false claims act is the
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whistleblowers tool. you file with the court and the attorney general of the state', secretly, and then the attorney general decides whether to intervene or not to intervene. if the attorney general decides not to intervene in not dismiss it, then that gives the whistle- blower the authority of the attorney general. however, when you go to court and state your case on behalf of the taxpayers of the state, the court will dismiss it, and on your way out of the court, you may be arrested. i was arrested in the courthouse for impersonating the attorney- general. and when i got back to my property, there was a regulatory agency out there doing the
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demolition on my property. without a warrant, and there were three police agencies involved, and i was arrested for threatening public officials. overtaking people's real estate, basically. host: mixed feelings about whistleblowers. this is a e-mail. let's go to tennessee. you are our last caller on this. what is the role of a whistle- blower? caller: to protect we the
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people. did you know that tomorrow is the 50th anniversary of a speech by, i guess you'd call him, the ultimate whistleblower? john f. kennedy, and the name of his speech is called the president and the press. it was delivered to the american newspaper publication association at the waldorf- astoria in new york. i'll give you the very first line -- well, one line from his speech. it goes, the very word secrecy is repugnant in a free and open society, and we are as a people inherently and historically opposed to secret societies. and it goes on and on and on. john f. kennedy, i guess, was
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the ultimate whistle-blower. my name is arnold joseph white. i have co-authored a book where i do some whistleblowing of my own. you can read this book for three at lovegodislove.org. >> that does it for this conversation. coming up in 45 minutes, you have seen the headlines about the cellphones in the tracking devices. we will talk about that in 45 minutes. first, all the that the u.s. airline industry with marion blakey, the former faa administrator. we will be right back. ♪
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>> if they send the bill in its present form, i will sign it. ok, any questions? [laughter] nobody? are you still here? did in every year at the president and journalists make fun at themselves at their own expense. president obama will head their again this saturday. watch live or go about -- go back and watch pass to dinners. online at the c-span video library, every program since 1987. watch what you want when you want. >> now available, c-
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>> "washington journal" continues. host: marion blakey is the former faa administrator from 2002-2007, current the ceo of aerospace industries associated. let's begin with this headline in the "wall street journal." down at the end of the article, from someone who served on the safety board. he goes on to say this, science is very consistent about the importance of permitting naps of abruptly -- of roughly half an hour to help controllers feel more alert. what is your take on this? guest: the key thing is that professionals working in the kind of shift work or safety is involved have to be fully rested. they do have to approach this
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with schedules that allow enough time to sleep appropriately. whether it is naps or a good eight-hour and night's sleep, one of the problems with the current system is that it is loaded in the wake of a two-to- one schedule, so that they can have the maximum amount of time off. it splits -- it makes the last ship, the one where people are the most tired, the midnight shift. many people wanted to hold onto it because it does give the most time off. host: it says here that for 30 years this has been a problem. can you speak to the history of this more? guest: i did not know about 30 years. we have been running the safest system by far for a long time.
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controllers are professionals and on the hold to a very good job. i don't think that you could sort out that there has been a fatigue issue of all along, except in some cases. but as we learn more about their circadian rhythms it is time to examine some of the underlying practices because we cannot change them. host: some talk about the training that faa controllers are allowed to go through before they are allowed to sit in those towers. does that include sleep deprivation training? guest: absolutely. they are highly trained. they go through months and months of very rigorous training, both technical and human factors. questions of how you allow yourself to when you are too tired, and what kinds of sleet and eating habits, what kind of relaxation and exercise, all
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those things go into a controllers training. a lot it is common sense as they go along. i do not think it is a question of a lack of training. it may be a question of complacency. i am assuming that they are consummate professionals, that they can somehow make do with less sleep, that they can be less vigorous in the way that they focus being on the job, and that is something we all have to guard against. host: what is the quality of their training? guest: it is excellent. it begins with preparatory schools, universities, then they go to oklahoma city, okla. where they spent months in training, both on the technical aspects of the job, radar, how you work with pilots in terms of control, voice control, all of the kind of separation techniques used
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-- there is extremely sophisticated technology now. that is a great deal of the training, has his training about what are the habits of a good professional in this kind of job. it takes folks with high energy, a question of getting them oriented toward using their energy and their best ability to focus. that is something that mentors also dealt with on the job. host: what is a like to be in a tower? does that fit well with these personalities? guest: i think it does, for people that like to step up and be on the job on the balls of their feet all day. there is one that is highly oriented in many ways, the kind of training that they both have come a pilots and controllers,
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focus on the professionalism. their ability to hone in on exactly what is being done at the time, clothes and other distractions come and really work together closely. that's something that takes a lot of training. on both sides, and pilots have done a good job on the fatigue front, by the way. host: those to go through the faa training to be in the control room, how many graduates compared to how many want the job? guest: there is a washout phase. i do not know what the current figures are. but it is true that there is a sorting out process. but again, only certain types of people with certain skills will make the best controllers. host: could the private sector
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do the job better than having the government run the control tower's? guest: i do not necessarily think so. there is nothing magic about the responsibilities whether public or private sector. but the private sector offers a great deal in terms of the best technology, and also the crossover techniques like the medical industry. there is a good bit that you learned from the private sector. and i will say this, the private sector in most air traffic control systems is in charge. we can learn from what others are doing. i do not think that there is a magic thing that says government versus private. host: we're talking with marion blakey who ran the faa in the early 2000's. what sort of clients to you now represent? guest: we manufacture everything
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that flies. from the f-22 to things like the space shuttle. we represent space as well as it usaf all the way through commercial and military. host: we're talking about the big companies. guest: lockheed martin, federal dynamics, lockheed -- i could go on. it is much of the names that you have come to know and rely on. so many of them keeping our troops say. host: a republican in jesup, maryland. caller: my husband has done shift work for 30 years. it is his responsibility to make sure that he is well rested before he goes again. i think the problem with the controllers are they are splitting the chefs. they're working two days on day
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shift, and then a couple on the night shift. if they would just make a night shift, a day shift, it would work to much better for those working at night. it throws off your body rhythms if you bounce back and forth. host: what you mean it is your husband's responsibility to be well rested? is that part of some agreement he has when he took on this job? caller: absolutely. the work that he does required this. he has got work to do and he needs to get it done in the eight hours. host: what does he do for a living? caller: telecommunications. host: can you translate what her husband goes through to the experience of the control tower's? guest: she makes a very good.
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name. the more that your body is able to remain on a given schedule, he gets used to it, and you sleep adequately between shifts, the better it tends to work. it is the split shift, they stack up differently, but it is true that any given week, and you have to shift from working early mornings to days and then moving into an afternoon and then the overnight schedule, that means your body is constantly trying to catch up. 50 cents cn -- fatigue sets in. host: he said the unions have lobbied for these types of schedules because it allows for more time off. how much time do they get off? guest: they have had the schedule for a lot of time.
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it is a preference. it is typically a three day weekend. i can understand that. host: we'll go to pittsburgh. patrick on the democratic line. caller: this is what we encounter not just in the airline industry but across the landscape in america we have declared war on workers. we have turned it into an absolute obsession by corporate america. every corporation she highlighted has their fingers in the treasury of the united states. we need to cut back the military-industrial complex, and corporate welfare, and invest in the workers of this country, which are under absolute assault. host: we have your point. marion blakey? guest: i am not familiar that --
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of many companies in the aerospace industry that are involved in corporate welfare. these companies manufacture technology that keep our fighters safe. one of the things that is best about the u.s.'s we do not have a plain field that is not level. -- is play in a field that is not level. that is what our companies put their work in corporate life into. i consider that public service. host: the caller mentioned defense cuts. what impact does that have on the industries that that -- that you represent? guest: the defense industry is the source of a tremendous number of high-paying jobs for -- 800,000 jobs. i would also point out that in terms of the overall economy, we are the largest contributor to a
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positive balance of trade. we talk about our economy. look at the fact that this is an industry that exports find technology. we help support the economy. we were part of what helped us through this recession. if it is cut, you have to be very careful. secretary gates himself has said that we really cannot afford while we are fighting two wars, and it looks like the president is taking this into a third, to begin to talk about slashing defense is a dangerous thing to do. we will not have the technological edge if we are not able to invest in new programs, and that is really at the heart of things -- research and development, and new advances. the thick, hear from a democrat in pittsburgh.
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-- vick, a democrat in pittsburgh. caller: i had the privilege of my mother and two friends that were involved in the macarthur tower in long island, so i was r.le to tou it was a very, very stressful job. i also have a neighbor involved as an air traffic controller. it is one of the most stressful jobs on the face of this earth. to imagine that you are covering approximately about -- especially in new york, probably about a good 200 planes an hour that you have to be responsible for.
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the stress level leads lead -- to a high divorce rate and high alcoholism. that is one of the reasons why they were protesting in the early 1980's when ronald reagan had fired all of the air traffic controllers at that time. host: marion blakey, your reaction to that caller? guest: if it is a job that involves a lot of intensity. it's certainly has stressful moments. the caller is talking about the new york area, which is the most congested airspace we have. there are issues from the standpoint of being very much a profession that takes that degree of an ability to tolerate. i do not know that there are
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disproportionate incidence of alcoholism or divorced. he is going back a long way if he goes beds to the ronald reagan era. -- if he goes back to the ronald reagan era. host: according to reuters, the house and the senate have succumbed to an agreement on an essay a reauthorization bill. if the chairman of the transportation committee says this could effect those negotiations. what impact these things that would have? guest: it would depend on what he has in mind, and i can not read the chairman's mind. i do not think this is a question of for the most part, intentional this behavior -- miss behavior. a someone who intentionally goes
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into a control tower knowing they will not devote their full time and energy to the job should be dismissed and dismissed immediately. but, when people make mistakes, the question is how you address those and how you get rid of what might be a more broader problem? i think the fact that the current administrator is going out and visiting towers, and talking with controllers and groups about the question of professionalism and what it takes to do this job with the full ability, full attention, and doing that with the full leadership of the union, i see that as a positive step. host: let's go to houston, texas, nancy, an independent. caller: i used to manage a small office, and i cannot leave how complicated the government makes
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everything. with the controllers, all you need to do is hire some senior citizens that would like to pick up an extra $100 a week, have them sit with the person that has only one person in the control room, and they will make sure that they stay away, or if they take on nafta and something comes up, and lights are flashing, then they wake them up. that is all there is to it, and it would cost the government so little money. i do not understand why we have to make it so complicated. guest: that is an interesting idea, without a doubt. i am not sure i would support it. there are small places that need people there that are highly- trained and know what is going on. it takes months and months and months of training. extra people, or lay people up there, i think it would be more of a distraction.
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host: let's go to jay in detroit, on the republican line. caller: i am a former military fire and radio tower control operators. the reason i didn't do the tower work anymore is related to this issue. the issue is scheduling and the science associated with normal human sleep rhythm. it is really simple. the science is very good on the aviation side. they haven't worked out well. i would the interested -- they have it worked out well. i would be interesting -- interested to have your guests godard and their road. there is clear guidance. -- go down that road. there is clear guidance about what is required to be able to fly in terms of dealing with your sleep cycle.
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the two-to-one cycle is not good to how humans get sleet. i suppose it has more to do with the unions, but i do not know why they insist on rejecting the obvious, simple policies that work for the pilots, and apply them to the controllers. the apply a lot of other stuff, but they will not apply the simple concepts to get people enough rest to do their job. host: again, that is two evening shifts, two of the ships, and two overnight shift. guest: i think the pilots and the airline industry have addressed this responsibly, as has the military in terms of
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research manuals and ongoing training. in terms of pilots and copilots double checking and enforcing each other on these things -- one of our predecessors, who used to be the added measure of the faa wrote a piece in this weekend's "wall street journal." he called the 2-2-1 schedule a rattler because it will come back to bite the controller. i think more controllers are realizing that as we know more about fatigue, those things are hard on them, and also dangers for the public. host: what has been the recommendation over the years to switch the schedule? what type of schedule? guest: schedules that are much more consistent with the body's
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rhythms, and maintain the same schedule throw a working week, so your body gets used to it. whether you're working a day shift or an overnight shift, consistency helps. also, having enough time between shifts to take care of daily things and get a decent eight hours of sleep. if it sounds like common sense, but it has not been installed in a lot of places. it is important. the national transportation safety board has also called on the faa and the unions to change these kinds of schedules. there's a lot of pressure to make a shift. host: your note did you represent companies like boeing. here is a headline from yesterday -- it says a federal investigators allege at a manufacturing laps at a boeing
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factory 50 years ago led to the mid-air rupture. while it is too early to draw conclusions, the probe is focused on air deriving from the assembly line. what can you tell us about this? guest: i used to head the ntsb, which investigates accidents. i learned of the you do not speculate about what they cause might be. if you read all the way through, there were a lot of qualifiers. the important thing is to let investigators do their work, gets to the heart of their problem, and it may be a problem to -- with one aircraft, or it could be exacerbated with cycle time. there are so many things that could be at the heart of
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something like that incident, but the real important thing to do is to make sure you have the facts checked, and i have no way of knowing what happened 15 years ago in a plant. host: so, 15 years ago, -- displayed has stayed in circulation for 15 years. is this typical? -- co-absolutely. an aircraft in a typically five -- fly 25 years. b-52's are flying 50 years and older. host: under guidelines, how often do they have to be looked heaven and maintained? guest: -- looked at and maintained? guest: ofthere are routine maintenance checks that happen all the time. there is then what is called
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heavy maintenance, and they have been regularly over periods of time, so that the planes go through a thorough review before they go back into service. a lot of maintenance happens at that point. the system is extremely safe, and i do not think anyone is suggesting there is no need for another approach to maintenance, but we do need to get to the bottom of what may have happened in a specific incident -- incident. boeing is looking into this. i feel very confident they will get to the bottom of the. host: wendy's expect an answer? -- when do you expect an answer? guest: you have to look a forensic evidence, did the model assistant, examine the records, talk to the pilots -- everyone
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acknowledges in need to figure this out, but the key thing is that both boeing, the airline, and the faa acted immediately. they decided that they needed to check this particular group of and they immediately went into the intense inspection which involved skimming the with a light detector that could see what is going on under the skin of the aircraft -- where there might be thaw cracks or problems. that has been done, and i think they have a great deal of knowledge and confidence in the planes that fly. host: we will go to chris, a democrat in hollywood, florida. caller: house subject are the faa regulators to the political process? if it was the republicans, all
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of these things would be scuttled. with labor and regulations, just like a lot of other industries, especially in republican administrations? host: let me get back to the funding cut the the republicans propose. will the impact be of that? guest: issue is effected in the federal budget, the deficit, and what we will do about the debt. one region where that will come from, i do not know. -- where that will come from, i do not know. we are concerned that the cuts will come from the next generation, which is something we are concerned about turned it is the future of what air- traffic is -- of where air traffic is going, and it will make traffic safer. we are talking about losing to a
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satellite system, where what we take for granted, we assume gps will provide navigation. that is not true. we're still working with world war ii technology with radar and radio control. it is simply a system than needs to be replaced because it will allow us to know much more precisely where planes are, and allow for automation. importantly, in times where fuel costs are going through the roof, it will very much reduced fuel burned and that means environmental benefits. host: the price tag is $1 billion a year through 2018. can we afford it? guest: we have to afford it. when you look of the cost
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benefit, it is enormous in about three years, the system is paid for itself. when you realize fuel is the single highest thing that airlines have to shell out, it is driving everything. also, the fact that we spend a lot in terms of cleaner air and working on the issue of the environment and emissions, all of those things really contribute to concrete, monetary investments. we do not blink of our roads and highways, so we should not when it comes to aviation as well. again talk in terms of safety, there are huge benefits. host: michael is an independent in wilmington, vt.. thank you for waiting. caller: i would like to
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challenge you on various things. you are speaking about your industry, which is basically the defense industry making america a safer. in the middle east, we have a good example. we supplied weapons to some of the most brutal dictators or aggressive nations that masked as democracies without blinking. i would also like to know how much money your industry falls too loud? -- lobbyists through all of congress next -- congress? i would like you to comment on how much influence you buy. you also talked about our volunteers. these people are people that i've been deprived of the ability to go to school -- that has been deprived of the ability to go to school because your industry is one of the industry
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that has exported american jobs to different places in the world. i would like to compliment your industry for the technological off, engineering advances that give us cell phone, computers, the wonderful things that we have. host: i think i missed your first point. what was it? caller: the defense industry does not keep america safe. we create problems brought the world. we supply weapons for people to use on their own people and expand their territory. host: we will start there. marion blakey come at you have any thoughts on that? -- do you have any thoughts on that? guest: the defense industry is called on by the congress and the pentagon to supply the equipment that will protect war fighters and enable us to deal
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with conflicts. i do not think anyone will challenge the fact that we live in a dangerous world, the threats are real, and we begin their not of our making. to address those, we have a very brave group of men and women and officers, and they are the ones that determine what they need. some of this goes to high tech aircraft, and some of this goes in night vision goggles, the kind of things that make a difference to the war fighter out there care in our industry is proud to supply what is requested -- out there. our industry is proud to supply what is requested and approved. by the way, i would challenge the caller on the experience of men and women that go into the military. you will see that there is a very well and-educated group that choose this as an avenue, and when they come out, they have a tremendous educational
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advantage in terms of the current version of the gi bill and the bills letter offered to their families that the average person does not have. so, if the military is an excellent career, and you can look at statistics on recruitment, and the number of people that i going in that testifies to that. i would certainly say that the caller lives in another world, and it is a dangerous world. host: what about the case street lobbying? guest: that is something people love to throw up as a red herring. lobbyists, those on the hill, are usually making the case for a specific issue in the course of the legislative process. i have no idea what kind of money is invested by any of the corporate entities out there, be
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there in our field, pharmaceuticals, or across the entire spectrum, but remember, this is part of free speech. having people that are still better understanding the issues, the arguments, and being able to make a good case, that is a part of a the way america works in terms of our decision making. host: are you a registered lobbyist? guest: no. host: florida, is that on the republican line. -- zach on the republican line. caller: thank you to "washington journal." you guys to a great job. my question to you is it seems you are putting all of the blame on the men and women in the control tower's to almost
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sourced about as citizens of the military can to treat -- completely control this industry. correct me if i'm wrong, it seems the government is taking over nasa and our travel industry to almost hold us all hostages. how can the government shut down nasa? it is supposed to be an exploration to see where we are going, and now you guys are going to open it up to commercial -- host: i think we got your point. let's leave it there, with the future of nasa. guest: we believe nasa has a great future. it is an incredibly important part of our exploration and technological advances. hit us contributed so many things to this country, as well as the leadership that the united states exercises in space. we want to see that advanced.
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we think more money is needed from that standpoint. at this point, we would like to see a greater clarity about the vision of where we are going with human exploration of space -- the administration has shifted gears. we are putting more reliance on commercial providers of launch. there are different approaches. what we need is more robust funding. from that standpoint, i would say there is no attempt to shut down nasa, but the government short -- certainly could fund nasa with greater resources so it could accomplish what we want to see, which is the exploration of the further out reaches of space. host:" christian months science monitor has a link the -- lengthy piece with a picture of the crew for shuttle endeavor. it is scheduled to takeoff
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friday. will you be there? guest: i was at the last lunch. it was very exciting. wish i could beat ed -- i wish i could be at each of them. gabrielle giffords will be there. will be an exciting launch. i will tell you, everyone should watch this. it is the most amazing thing when you see the tiny spacecraft attached to those giant rocket. the earth shakes, and then you realize what humankind and the united states can do. host: where were you when you watched the last one? in the control room, outside? guest: just outside, in a tower that was not terribly far away. i watched it on television, and it was very different. for one thing, you see the flame, and it is just enormous.
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all of a sudden, you feel this reverberation, and then the noise hits you. it is all tied together. when your heart feels like it is being pounded by this, it is a very visceral, personal experience. host: we will go to burlington, vt., ron, on the democratic line with marion blakey, who served as the faa administrator from 2002 until 2007. she is currently president and chief field of the aerospace industries association. caller: well, congratulations on all of those accomplishments. is it true that boeing will be building a plant in china, and furthermore, i am curious about the restrictions, or the agreements that are made with china.
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i have heard that once a corporation does build a plant there, that the intellectual property rights and patents hard in joint -- become jointly owned by the corporation and the state of china. is that true? guest: i am not familiar with any requirements that you are laid out from the standpoint of the chinese government, the way those agreements work. i think it very much depends on technology, what kind of manufacturing is going done, etc.. i am not familiar that they are building a new plant in china. they are building a new plant in south carolina, which everyone is excited about. if you will see huge numbers of aircraft coming of of those assembly lines, and populating
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the skies. america is still very competitive from that standpoint with many chinese aircraft that might be manufactured over there. the chinese themselves are manufacturing several aircraft. they have one right now, and they have aspirations to build one the size of the larger aircraft. we will see how that goes. one of the things they you do see is that a lot of the companies, but the they european, u.s., as sarah, are asked -- be they european, u.s., asked to provide technology. i would also said the united states has a robust system of export controls when it comes to higher levels of experts
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technology. approval has to be given by the government. while the system is under reform, which should be, because we need highest interest on a higher technology, but the broader principles apply -- we are vigilant about what is exported and i think that is appropriate. host: at the chamber of commerce the maroc, it will be the 10th annual aviation's cemetery you are speaking their -- chamber of commerce, it will be the 10th annual aviation conference. you'll be speaking. caller: the benefits are very important. i will use another event that was in the news recently, and this was the recent go around, and the recent abortive landing
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of michele obama's landing. these things happen in a system. it is not a terribly unusual event. the reason i bring it up is deborah -- bringing it up is that in the next generation, you will have so much more automation has and precision with exactly to where aircraft are in relation with each other, that it would be highly, highly unlikely that you would find a circumstance like that when you get the system in. we are not that far away. the ground stations that will provide this kind of control will be completed by 2013. what we needed to get the equipment on board the aircraft, and that is something i will be talking about tomorrow because it is expensive for the airlines to install that, and it is something we need to think about. host: in the meantime, with
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mistakes like that happening and the skies becoming more crowded, are you 100% confident the skies are saved? guest: i am confident. when you look to the statistics about the numbers of aircraft that takeoff and land, we are running a very safe system. host: thank you for being here and talking to our viewers, marion blakey. we appreciate it. up next, we will talk about cell phone tracking and privacy issues, but next a news update. >> congressman james cliburn, the no. 3 democrat in the house speaking earlier today says he believes congress and the white house can find a consensus on tackling the nation's growing debt as long as "a lot of compassion is brought to the table." he added that government programs like medicare and medicaid must not be shredded. house republicans, in a long
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scheduled conference call set for today, plan to discuss ways to explain their approach to propose changes in medicare and medicaid following its sharp criticism from constituents for the budget plan passed in the house that calls for changes as a way to improve the nation's finances. in business news, ford motor co. is reporting its best profit in 13 years, driven by home sales in its home market and the demand for fuel-efficient vehicles. the company earned 62 cents a share, topping predictions. it is the seventh straight quarter of operating profit, and the highest first quarter net income since 1998. >> every weekend, experience of american history on c-span 3 starting saturday at 8:00 a.m. eastern with 48 hours a people
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continues. host: marc rotenberg is here. let me show our viewers the headline in "the usa today." phone tracking concerns crawl -- google, apple, have little to say. let's start with who was doing the tracking, and what devices they are using? guest: the discussion is mostly about the cell phone. they capture data which is useful, because they rely on knowing where you are, and the companies that provide these have been capturing this data on users. a paper came out last week but said look at all of the data that is on your iphone. everywhere you have been for the past year is available to others prepared -- to others. host: how are they doing it? guest: basically, your phone books for all waits to find its
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basic -- its physical space. the three techniques are cell towers, wifi hot spots, or the gps satellites, which is the most accurate, but also the slowest. it is partly because the gps technique is slow that these companies decided to keep the other data, the cell phone data, and the wifi data, cell phone can locate itself more quickly. host: water they doing with the data? -- what are they doing with the data? guest: everybody has their asking that. we know that some of the data is transferred from the phone to the companies to help build the use that big databases of location information, and that is not necessarily a bad thing. it is described as crowd sourcing. he provide value for a whole group. the interesting question is what happens if it remains
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identifiable to a particular user? now you have these big databases with where a particular person was. the companies said they are anonymous. they say by the time they collect the data it is not linked to a user, there for the privacy concern has gone away, but the other privacy concern is the information's stored on the phone. the devices themselves keep the data. they laud the data, and that is the second privacy issue being discussed current fiscal if i have data on myself of, could somebody else try to tap into that bad? guest: definitely. with the iphone, there are two targets. the phone itself -- if somebody were to steal your fault, or you were to leave the phone somewhere, or it was subpoenaed by the police or subject to civil litigation, third parties
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could take a file off of it that has all of the location information, everywhere you have been for roughly the last 10 months. the other place they could look for the data is on their computer, because what people typically do is sit the iphone with their computer. now, of that data is on the computer. that would be the other place people could pull your vocational information. host: is there software that allows somebody, without actually getting my device, phone or computer, to allow them to go into this bad? guest: now we are talking about hacking or surveillance. there appears to be ways to do that. you have to break through a couple of security techniques in the operating system. you might need to know somebody's password. most of the data is not been
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corrected, which a means if you get access to the file -- and corrected, which means if you get access to the file, it is not that difficult. host: why is it not in court did not? guest: that is a good question. even if it were encrypted on the phone, we heard there are companies that provide forensic services to the police, the military, private attorneys, and they basically say that if you get and iphone, even if it has a password, we will break through the passport and we will get access to the data. even some of the security techniques will lead guarantee privacy. host: can you turn the device off?
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guest: you can turn it off, aware of the problems is with the iphone, if you say you do not want location services, it does not solve the problem with the data that apple was collecting. all you're really saying is did not give my data to another company. apple says that is fine, but they will still keep it. host: senator al franken, a democrat of minnesota, according to this "usa today" article has scheduled a hearing. to testify is the attorney general of illinois, -- guest: that is exactly the point. if a users as they do not want to use any of these location services because everyone is
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talking about these privacy and location calls, it does not solve the problem because apple is keeping the data. host: we were showing our viewers the letter from senator al franken to steve jobs. it is posted on our website. you can also find a letter from ed markey, who heads up the caucus. guest: congressman ed markey has a strong niche in -- interest in this issue because he was one of the first members that identify the problem almost one decade ago when people were getting cell phones, and he said what about all of the location of data? he got a bill through congress to limit the use, and here we are 10 years later. host: are they breaking any laws? the guest: that is a good question. congressman ed markey thinks they are. it is not clear who is subject to the law. it was written at a time when
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people focused on the telecommunications companies. they thought they were regulating the companies, the as opposed to the manufacturers of cell phone devices or the designers of operating systems. host: marc rotenberg is our guest. we're talking about the privacy issues surrounding cell phone tracking devices. let's go to richard, a democrat in chicago. caller: why did they not just encrypt a cell phone, so let nobody could hat -- so that nobody could hack into the fall or the computer? guest: i think it is a step in the right direction, and we support that, but i do not think it solves all of the problems. you also have the effect that the data is being gathered by these companies, used for other
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location services. you'd have to start asking the questions of the data is linked back to the users. we need to get answers from the companies. host: could congress stepped in, and have the in the past? guest: absolutely, the one we are working on the medical privacy situation, where ed markey also played a role, congress mandated that one people were storing sensitive medical information it would not be accessed improperly. host: some have reported that steve jobs did response to an e- mail from somebody asking for such a -- some sort of response, and he says of " whether or the doug google android phone does the same thing he says "we do not track
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anyone, the info circulating around is false tell it is awfully big. what do you think? the gulf they might be technically correct, as they do not track individual users, but they still could be storing the data. i do not think his e-mail answered completely resolve the problem. more interesting still is what he had to say less sure about the privacy issue when he spoke at a big industry conference and he was actually interviewed by "the wall street journal." he wanted apple to do a good job about privacy, and the new consumers have concerns. at some level, i have to believe he is not happy with where things are. host: let's go to an independent in peoria, ill..
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caller: there are millions of people in the devastates becker onstar in the united states. they can turn that on at any time, where they could make your car stopped. this privacy issue is just a small scratch on the surface. guest: the caller makes a good point. there are many different privacy issues out there, and this is just one of them, but it is a very significant one. the high for this so popular because location privacy is so sensitive. when you have engineers look at the devices, and said do you know that your phone has been taken track of everything -- everywhere you been? host: byron, what do you think? caller: i have a verizon fund.
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-- psalm. -- phone. [unintelligible] they told me might exact position of the river. i know verizon has that also. that is all i ever to sit. it is not just iphone, all of your cell phones. host: byron, do think it is a positive thing? caller: i get out in the woods quite a bit, and if i have a problem, break a leg, i would want somebody to know where i was prepar. guest: it is an excellent point. that is the exception that congress wanted, the information
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to be available for emergency services. there would clearly be some benefits of somebody was in trouble to be able to locate them, and we have never argued that that is not an appropriate use. i think the concerns today are about the collection of data for other purposes. is it being used for marketing or law enforcement? host: the business today section of 0: vendor times -- -- "the new york times" -- maps that helps cell phones pinpoint locations --
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guest: here is an interesting problem about that scenario. if you and i go to a shopping mall, we can see the stores, what kind of stores that are, and the vacancies, and you might decide you might want to put a shop there. what is happening with these services, and when google is describing is its own ability to see the light out of -- layout of the terrain. behind the openness, there is secrecy about how the data is collected and used. host: will go to gary, an independent in florida. caller: i have been in the i.t. business for 10 years. the company i work for? lee -- co. i worked for actually
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made chips for cell phones before they got moved to china. the purposes you are walking along, and you go buy pizza hut, they will know you are there, and all you are there and at noon. the next time you are anywhere near pizza hut, you will get junk mail. that is really the whole idea of the design. they say it is for convenience, the you can now have coupons sent to you. basically, i see it as junk mail. he will be walking along, a new will start getting junk advertisements. they know you have been in the store, the store will send you information hoping to get you back into the store. the restaurant will send you a lunch to punt. that is really the only reason they wanted to a parent is a business decision -- wants to do it. it is a business decision.
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guest: advertising has played a role pedicle what companies found that -- was that when customers were displayed these ads, they were annoyed. they do not want to see these ads. what is happening, if they're saving the data or finding other ways to use the data, and making that a part of your consumer profile. it is still very much a business decision host: julie, a democrat in fayetteville, n.c., you are next. caller: i do not think many people would be upset if they do not know where they were at and they were not familiar with the area. i do not think they would be so upset if it saves their lives. it is protecting individuals that are using a throwaway phone, and say there are a terrorist, or protecting
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that arelis committing a crime. it is protecting people. we use it on our land line for 911 purposes. it is protecting individuals, why are we upset? we use the online alliance for years. -- land lines for years guest: it is a good point. there is a lot of benefit of the services. it is great if you are lost to be able to use the service to figure out where you are, but the question that needs to be asked this who else needs to know where you are? in other words, the gps needs to provide the customer the service, not somebody you do not know, possibly a stranger, and that contributes to the sensitivity of this information.
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host: a "the washington times" editorial this morning -- guest: this is also a part of the story, and it is why i do not think the story will go way too soon. it is not just of the devices are keeping the data. the data has value to the government headed as possible which you can aggregate that data, or remove it. in some cases, the government wants access. right now, the legal protections for this information are not very good, so you couple of phone and the easy access, and you have some problems.
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host: we will go to granada, mississippi, steve, a republican. good morning. caller: i am not a republican, i'm an independent. everybody has an issue. stop using the phones? stop buying the technology. stop putting money into onstar. we did fine for 20 years without them. stop using them. if people have been issued, and do away with it. host: here is a sarcastic tweet -- tom, an independent. good morning. caller: by a moderate who is
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profiling the profilers. -- i am wondering who was profiled in the profilers. i'm wondering which of the telecom companies, verizon, at&t, or the others are the best in privacy protection. i have a phone from walmart that cost me $50 a month, but i've serious privacy issues. guest: the caller raises a good point. there was a huge debate over september 11 with the passage of the patriot act and the news of the government was engaged in wiretapping. the question was asked is enough being done to protect the personal information of telephone consumers. clearly, i think we need to update these laws. there's a lot of data being tapped. we need to make sure our laws correspond to these technologies and business practices.
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go to vermont, the guards, on the democrats' line. caller: if you follow somebody around, you can be charged with stalking. that kind of goes along with the foam thing. and they should create something called cyber stocking. -- stocking. when you buy a phone, you should be given a chance to say yes, i want to be tracked, or note. i had a friend who told me that if you take your battery out of your fall they can not tracking. h., i think that will work. if you take the battery out of your phone, that will work. host: the chairman of the house energy and commerce committee has also sent a letter to
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ceo's, with several questions. as one of them is is the data automatically transfer to your company, other devices, or to third parties. guest: this is the issue with the iphone because you have the third party apps, which means the debt is transferred. yes, the companies will say that as part of how these programs are designed to work. host: is that within the law? guest: the consumer is making the choice. there is a switch of the iphone that says it is ok to disclose, but it does not get to the problem for the device keeping the information. host: does the consumers signed an agreement? guest: apple, as do all the
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companies, they have broad rights. i do not think that is efficient if you are collecting information, people need better protection. host: so, the law is behind the times? guest: absolutely. host: what is being talked about on capitol hill? guest: i think they will begin with hearings. senator al franken is talking about a lot -- a hearing in may. privacy is a big issue in this congress. we have senators like john kerrey and john mccain introducing comprehensive privacy protection. i think we will see a lot of activity. host: bob, an independent scholar. le -- collar. welcome to the conversation. caller: you mentioned at the beginning of this discussion about computers. with regards to that, several
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lights on the news they mentioned a right-wing group called the mackinaw group, who was getting emails and targeting the university professionals that have keywords like wisconsin and labor laws. that ought to be a huge concern. i cannot imagines that is legal. guest: that is an interesting case that a rise in the world of open government because there are political groups in the state of wisconsin they use the wisconsin open government a lot to get the personal correspondence of some of the professors involved in debates. suddenly, you have the principles of open government colliding with the policy of university employees. i think the university did a good job of managing that. we have these interesting cases, where there are two competing interests.
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host: washington, d.c., independent caller. the privacy is interesting, but i think we have forfeited these to the information age. i think they will come into our lives. scholastic that point. i disagree quite strongly. i think we need to figure out how to obtain the benefits and simultaneously protect privacy. if we have learned anything from the history of innovation and industrialization is that we go through these periods of time, as we did with railways, automobiles, and all sorts of wonderful innovations, and consumer safety, and all of these activities. that is where we are with privacy. we need to sit there and how to provide services in a way that
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provides benefits host: if consumers have a choice about been tracked or not, that is quite different than being tracked without approval or knowledge. guest: unfortunately, it is not that simple. people will agree to be tracked. we talked about the scenario. i think most people would say yes you're on the air, janet. caller: yes. basically my question is i've got a samp son phone. now, if i was in a situation, and i was able to dial 911 and
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they don't know where i am, are they going to be able to track me down and find me? guest: again, this is the point. there are times when users will want to be located. but just because you want to be located for that purpose doesn't mean you want to be located for other purposes. so i think something needs to be done to protect their privacy. host: hello? vivian? caller: yes, i was wondering how you have privacy enlisted on your house phone but not your cell phone. and i had a dangerous situation where someone was able to track me on my cell phone, and i had
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to relocate. guest: a lot of people thought they could keep their phone number and identity separate but it's hard to maintain. host: next on our independent line. caller: good morning. i'm calling because there's a call from north carolina who called earlier, and she mentioned something about having people being tracked on their phones and how she was ok with that. and i wonder if she's just ok with giving up her constitutional rights or privacy, because that's essentially what we're doing. once you allow people into your home that way and allow them to listen to your phone calls and track you where you are, essentially, u giving up your right to privacy. and i just wanted your thoughts on that.
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guest: oftentimes it's easy to get people to give up their privacy if they see short-term benefit, which is one of the reasons we think you need a law that says this kind of collection is just not appropriate. and i think you need regular threat use of the information by police agent agency. host: so police do use this? guest: yes. and they've state that i had dombt need a warrant, so they can take your cell phone without a warrant and access your data. caller: yes. i want to follow up with what the guest just said. some people dispose in their -- of their phones in terrible ways by throwing them into the
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water or a landfill and it's going to pollute the earth. guest: a number of companies have taken steps to encourage customers to recycle their phones but a lot of the data stays on the phone even after you cancel your plan, so when you want to get a new phone you might want to find out how do you erase that data. host: one of the privacy issues at large. there's a lot of talk about privacy issues when it comes to facebook. what should viewers be watching for? >> i think we're beginning to see a turning point on the privacy front which for a long time congress is saying let's see if these companies can
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self-regulate. but now the privacy issues are real and i think it's time for legislation. so that's what we're going to watch for this year is the enactment of privacy laws. host: sam? democratic caller. good morning. caller: i was just talking about the legislation right now. the patriot act and how they have tried regulate data regulation. and the intel has become more sensitive over the years, because people are realizing that they could be harmed if people see this information out in the open. i just believe that's also another violation of our civil rights.
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i just wanted to see how you felt in terms of that. guest: well, it's a question that really goes to the heart of the debate. i think after 9/11 the pendulum swung in the direction of needing a law to protect us from further terrorist acts but now people are saying maybe there's too much data collection. we need think moreibility the privacy. caller: government officials, would they be exempt from this problem, like, being tracked in the white house? is that a hazard? guest: that's another good question. people in government who have sensitive jobs realize they are at risk in a way they didn't understand previously. so i think it's a concern for those in law enforcement using cell phones.
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now there's a lot of data that could be accessible to others and could possibly put them at risk. host: hello? you're the last with marc. we're talking about privacy issues. caller: if you wanted to find someone's location, basically all you have to do is go to the white pages and type in the person's name. once you do that, you can get their age, all different places in which they have lived previously, and the people who might be possibly related to them and might live with them in their household. and then zero down and select their location and zero right down to their house. so how -- is that? guest: well, there's no doubt about it that there's so much personal information online but
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the concern with this data is it's reality data. with great accuracy within a few city blocks. that's what is now available and why people are so concerned about privacy. host: marc, thank you for talking with our viewers. for all of you coming up this morning at 10:00 a.m. eastern time, we're going to be covering on our radio show the january mickelson show here on c-span. and then on wednesday at success p.m. the exchange from iowa city and then thursday at 3:00 p.m. the jim fisher show. our coverage of campaign 20 12. coming up, the discussion on the government's role in response. focusing on this issue for his video, here's the documentary. >> my name is math that you want to i'm a junior at a high
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school. on may 25, my life was changed first-ever. >> a history-making twister produced winds in excess of 200 miles per hour. the severe storm system virtually ripped the town in half. 22 businesses. leveled 222 homes and damaged others in a community of only 2,000. but the statistics don't do justice to the heartbreak and the hurt. >> my home was located where it took nearly a year to rebuild and we were finally able to move in. but in a matter of seconds, it was gone. but even after the tornado, it did not seize to exist our
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recovery began after the storm passed and the city, high school and city hall and majority of the other buildings destroyed during the storm have been rebuild. >> it's amazing to see their determination and resilience. it was inspiring to see the community really come together. >> but there's still a cloud hanging over our community. we still struggle with the federal government and fema and disaster relief. >> 2 1/2 years removed from that day and we're still working with fema. >> in the 1990's, fema was a model government agency. but as hurricane katrina showed, croneyism, underfunding and lack of leadership turned fema into the most rid called agency in the federal government. >> the team has handled continued disaster relief
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there. >> parts of the government you love and parts you hate. >> there's been sometimes with some national disasters, fema has not functioned so well. take in the last five years. they could have gotten their act together and done a better job. >> in several areas, fema handles parts of tornado assistance well. >> when it comes to recovery in florida, fema has been good to us. >> they have helped us with school buses, laying another track at the football field. playgrounds and parking lots. >> once the tornado happened, it was very apparent from the damage that it was a catastrophic event. that it was going to be beyond
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the needs of the community. fema stepped in very, very early in the process. >> that was definitely beneficial. they also set up a command center here not only for helping the disaster and recovery but also helping the citizens. >> we distributed more than $2 million within the first two weeks of that nade parkersburg. >> without fema funds, parkersburg wouldn't exist or be where we are at today. >> however, they missed due to miscommunications, we find ourselves today in a critical struggle. >> at the very grassroots there's a little problem with fema, maybe different people having a different view of what the government can and can't do. >> it's easy for misunderstandings like that to
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happen, because they don't keep enough people on the payroll to just handle a disaster in that part of the country. >> fema has a full-time staff. we then pull from what we call our reservists or disaster assistance employees. unfortunately, the way the reservists work, we do rotate them in and out. >> well, 2 na years later, a lot of that information we received was inaccurate. some of the guidance we received is not policy-driven. the decisions we made as a school board and really on behalf of our students and communities was based entirely on that information we received. and we find ourselves 2 1/2 years later in kind of a financial crisis of sorts as we are waiting an official word on funding.
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fema is now requesting that be returned. >> from the initial time we give out kind of an estimate of the amount of funding in what we call project work sheet, there are likely to be changes that happen from that time until the time the money is allocated. so that's how those types of situations where we have those occur. >> i guess that's the 180-degree difference to obligating money. you sign a project work sheeth and state the federal government going to help by contributing this much money towards the project. months go by. in this case years go by, and they come back after a third or fourth review and say that isn't how it should have been handeled and now they are going to de obligate that money. >> they can take it away after they gave it. and de obligated, i didn't even know that was a word. you know, we should have known that could have happened.
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>> fema has very strict guidelines. if you don't do this or that or everything right, they have the ability to de obligate at any point. >> that's where thing of the people have become such a factor for us. the people we originally worked with understood we needed to get back into our high school within a year. so decisions were need move that time line along quickly. and that's how things change now. things being reviewed by the third or fourth viewer and the extra costs associated. >> the city may never fully recover. but my community's restoration was not only the result of federal assistance. >> we were not going to sit around and wait for the federal government to do everything.
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or what we can do or not do. we just had a can-do attitude and did it. >> we, the people created our success. >> though fema has aided parts tremendously, it's also created challenges that athlete the progress we've made. the lack of funding jeopardize my school and the education of the area. without the renewed aid from the federal government, my life and my community may face continued devastation after the storm. host: we'd like to introduce you to this year's first prize high school winner, matthew joining us from john on the, iowa. congratulations on your prize-winning entry. >> thank you, very much. host: we just showed the tour
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and document enrichment it was a personal story for you, but how did you come about deciding this is what you wanted to do? >> i was taking an american history class and in the class i was spodse to make a documentary on american history and my teacher approached me with this idea to enter the sfean competition. and i thought hey, do this project and earn some money, get an a. it works. but we brain stormed some issues, and the top i can that seemed most fitting and -- most fitting and most obvious had to do with the parkersburg tornado and the role the federal government played through fema in the cast part of the federal government.
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host: what did you learn about the federal government? guest: that the cover, fema was able to definitely help parkersburg a lot with certain projects and getting things together. without finally fema, we wouldn't be as rebuilt as we are today. host: and what surprised you about the federal government and how it works? >> well, particularly through fema, we are still working with the federal government today. it's an ongoing process. host: so did you start out having one opinion of fema and the government, and thven it changed as you went along? >> well, in the beginning, i wasn't aware of the struggles weerp having. it was -- we recovered, and it was done with. but i learned there was a
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bigger role it played and i learned both the good things fema has done and certain things they can improve on. and fema has definitely done well for parkersburg, but there are still issues that need to be dealt with. host: the community exists of about 2,000 people. ital leveled 222 homes and damaged 480. have you been following the project of fema since you submitted the documentary? and what have you learned? >> i've heard of other tornadoes and disasters and such and i've learned that fema is still trying to help therges and they are doing the best they can. there's been issues that need to be addressed also with the floods in 2010. and i've learned that's an ongoing process for many communities.
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host: you mentioned there's $3,000 that goes look nch along with this. what do you mant to do with it? >> a lot of it i will put -- distribute some to a group called neighbors across the land formed after the tornado. they go around and help other communities stricken by disasters. and they help with the recovery. so i plan to donate a portion of that and update some of my film equipment. film is a passion of mine, and i like to do it, but i need a little bit of upgrade with my equipment. so i'm going to put a little bit of money into that. >> we spoke about filming for the documentary, getting all the different types of elements that you needed. >> yeses a fascinating process talking to all these people and
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learning their story. i had a great time talking with the former governor and as well as a representative from fema, and they provided get a insights into their -- i filmed all the interviews on my little flip portible camcorder with a tripod with a missing leg. so had a liling little issue with that. and then i borrowed a school lap top and used some editing software off of that to put it together. i had so much great information that was difficult to compress into a 10-minute voofment but i got that done.
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host: well, congratulations matthew. thank you for being here and talking about the role of government in disaster response. our first-place prize winner. also joining us is the former fema director from 2001-2003 to help us answer viewer phone calls, and in a situation like this tornado that hit parkersburg, aye aye, twhast the role -- dd -- guest: he probably left the best stories on the cutting room floor. but it's a challenge. we'll be nice to him today. he might be the next steven speelburg. host: you're right. guest: fema basically takes
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place when the local government -- budgets are outstripped for what resources are actually needed to respond to any type of disaster. and the process is that the local entity talks to the governor's office, and the governor eefs office prepares a disaster's declaration that goes to the president of the united states. the president's office through fema normally reviews that application and makes a recommendation. normally when lives are at risk, the president acts very, very quickly. always with a -- with the hearts of those who have been hampled. and it really doesn't matter whether it's a democrat or republican, the president is fulfilling his obligation through people ray to respond
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to disasters. i know of one particular response. in kansas in 2002. the city was leled much like parkersburg was, and fema acted responsibly as they did in parkersburg. now one of the problems is as projects develop and evolve and come to completion, there's always disagreements and discussions about the finer points. and i understand that fema has some ongoing issues with parkersburg. but i'm sure there can be an immediate resolution. i don't know the particulars in this case. the residents of parkersburg wants a quick resolution. host: how does fema determine
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who is going to help and how? >> well, it's individual and public assistance. i think the video matthew did mainly focuses on public assistance. public buildings. public infrastructure. and sometimes federal agencies in my opinion overstep their bounds in trying to enforce a particular edict or rules or regulations that may be important elsewhere in the country. maybe not in the plain state of iowa. and the additional thing i think that is always a problem is you have staff over the. you make agreements. there's promises made and a fema representative says yes, we can do this and no, we can't do that. as time passes, those disaster
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assistance employees go out after serving their term. new policies come in. what happens is that that's not fair to local taxpayers. when you're -- we're still dealing with issues from hurricane katrina six years ago. and in my mind that's absolutely unacceptable. host: you touched on this and matthew talked about it in hisvoofment how can money be de obligated. guest: the stat ford act sets out broad parameters on what you can and can't do rightly so there was great latitude on what officials can and can't agree to within the guidelines.
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sometimes a political agenda or personality gets in the way and as a last resort someone will step in and say we're going to de obligate your funds. which is totally not right and not fair. no one en wants to see of on top of the table and a decision come to by everyone host: if there's a time frame in which fema says we've been working with you for x number of days or months and we can no longer work with you, what goes on? >> well, it was given to the then director and fotch -- but there were a lot of ongoing
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disasters whether it's flooding or the massive tornadoes that hit the southeast last week. those are all open disasters and normally the director or or administrator is directed to put an individual in charge to act in his or her sted to make these decisions. that's where these decisions need to be resolved. the obligation comes about when they get -- we're running a deficit. over $1 trillion. $1.5 trillion. so many agencies are put under the gun to not spend money or hold off on money. as a result when commitments are made some officials and representatives are put on the hot plate, so to speak, and go back and study instead of saying we once money is
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bhiggetted or committed by fema, there ought to be follow through. host: disaster response is our topic this morning. a new study shows rival for tornado aly. ground zero for twisters now may be in the southeast of the country. and floods drive people from gnomes missouri. -- from homes in missouri. and more rain is on the way. probably a headline we're going to be seeing across the country with spring floods. we're talking about disaster responses today. our first prize high school winner, matthew wick did his study about the role of government and disaster. caller? caller: i was wondering to talk to the director there, how much
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difference it makes in fema when george bush cut a lot of the funding from it? because we're having all these problems now, and now we have no money, and fema is taken care of. so i'll take your answer off the air. guest: i am always asked often about the budgets. and the way the congress operates and the president signs the funding bill is there's what's called the disaster relief fund. d.r.f. for short. washington loves ack are anymores, but they are given x million dollars a queer to start with in their annual budgets and congress will ails replenish their disaster relief fund should it run dry. i don't know any time president budget and were called to respond to any and all actions.
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especially the principal responsible for 9/11. we spent so much at the sites in pennsylvania and at the pentagon. but congress says this is an american issue and when people are hurt and in harm's way, the congress always has a generous national security trying to help their fellow citizens. if i knew specifically what you were referring to on cutting budgets, i could respond. but as the former budget director for a time, we got a response. host: caller? caller: i want to commend the young man for doing his winning video. and i worked with fema right after hurricane andrew.
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in miami. in 1992-1993. it took us about six years, but i was actually giggling, because this young man has fema right on the money. everything that he indicated in his video is exactly what we went through in the early 90's. and it's interesting to see that in the 19 90's until now, it's not changed at all. >> eff -- connie, i think you and he are on to something. i would not like it when people would inform me that money got de obligated. i would basically say you made a commitment. is your word good or no good? we, as american taxpayers, expect the government to step
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up and assist states in responding to all natural disasters. it's not just the response but the recovery mode and rebuilding mode. i appreciate your point, connie, and i have heart burn with those individuals that made the commitment and then for whatever reason moved another job or have a promotion or moved out of that particular responsibility and then local officials are left to deal with a new team, new faces, and they have to retell the story again. i think retelling the story once is enough. particularly when money is obligated to fund whatever projects for individuals, families or in the public assistance arena. >> in matthew's documentary, he features congressman waxman's -- saying it suffered from croneyism, lack of funding and leadership. >> i have no specifics on
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something specific -- guest: but maybe after hurricane katrina, i believe fema had a breakdown in communication, but you can't just point fingers at fema for the lack of response in fema. i could point it to lack of government and it needs to start with the local government. we are still at the federal government dealing with issues. issues after the fact, helping louisiana get back up off their feet. guest: we do a lot of security consulting, high-profile protection. a lot of training.
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we also do a lot of disaster assistance, helping local officials try to negotiate the path. we're basically a consulting firm internationally. host: san antonio, texas, independent. welcome to the kong very sation. caller: my question for the director is about the properties fema has located across the country that are for the expected insur intelligence of immigrants because of the war on drugs and how do they relate to disaster responses and what are they expecting as far as a disaster. >> alex, i appreciate your call, but i have to tell you, i don't know anything about that. there were no such facilities during the two years i existed as director. i know there's a lot of buzz on the internet about locations
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fema owns and i know we have regional offices, regional personnel. we preposition access supplies and people in those regions, but unless you know something specifically, i'm afraid i can't help you on that issue. host: we'll go to ron, a democrat from north town, pennsylvania. caller: thank you for taking my call. i wanted to correct the director on one thing. first, in 2001, i happen to know because i grew up in highwaysenton, and i left kansas in 2001 shortly after the housen to know tornado. i was interested in knowing what kind of help fema gave to that area, and i want to congratulate matthew on his win.
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and i'll take my answer off the line. guest: thank you, ron. i went there. the path of the tornado, as you probably remember, acted like a knife, slicing if -- through. schools, hospitals, roads, i don't remember the specifics. it's almost 10 years ago. but measure importantly to families and individuals, individual assistance. a lot of confusing comes into play if individuals or businesses have the insurance policies. that's part of the reason that we have an industry to take the risk and lower the risk in individuals and companies by
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paying monthly premiums for insurance. if you have insurance, fema will not allow you to essentially double dip. in other words, they will allow your insurance policy, but then if there's a belief by fema officials that more money, sometimes people are underinsured -- more money is needed -- remember, it's not supposed to be a full-time permanent fix. it's supposed to help you in the rough times. and i remember assistance for families that was an immediate influx that was supposed to help you pay for family needs and toiletry items and clothing. i don't remember the amount of money, but i know that it was a lot of money. and out in the plains, you're subject to a lot of tornadoes.
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high winds. and it's not an uncommon occurrence. part of our problem here in the u.s. is that we've raised expectations for all our citizens that if there's something that's going to happen, then the federal government is going to come in and make you 100% whole. that's just not possible. not possible in today's budgets where we're running such huge, vast sums of money over our budgets. and it's much like you having your credit card. if you over spend your credit card, pretty soon they won't give you any credit. we're trying to make sure we have money. that's the job of the federal government. not to be first on the scene. but probably last on the see. caller: first of all, so you understand my position.
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if the main job of the federal government is to protect the citizens of the united states, whether it be from terrorism or war or whatever, i believe that that constitutes also helping people recover. i live in florida. i went through the hurricane charley, hurricane francis. you name it, we went there. all of a sudden because my home was hit in hurricane charley, which was the first of four, the insurance company was willing to make us somewhat whole. but once we got to the second or third hurricane, the insurance companies didn't want to pay. to in fema or the government, certainly not the state.
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certainly not the city. they had no funds and were notaling with -- and -- guest: i remember very well suggest down with leaders of the insurance industry. we were talking about property and casualty companies that ensure the majority of businesses and homes in the u.s. but they too, are in a for-profit business, and they, too, have policy holders and stock holders that they have to respond to. those pressures. so it's a difficult issue. i don't like the way some insurance companies treat their
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policy holders, particularly if you have a policy in good standing, your premiums are current. i just don't like it. but at the same time let me just say it's not federal government's job or fema's troll make you whole again. there's not enough money in the world to make everyone whole in narrow own mind. it is important to get you over the rough spot and get you back on your feet so you can take care of yourself. i mean, we are supposed to be a culture of individualism. and unfortunately we have become somewhat lax and reliant upon government agencies to help us. and that is not what made our country great and we cannot be on a government dole all the time. it is not possible. host: yesterday we introduced you to our first prize middle
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school winner for our student cam competition. today we're talking about disaster response, because that was the topic of our first prize winner in the high school category. matthew wick. i'm curious, because you went along in the process of doing your documentary. what do you think about fema that needs to change, if anything guest: the big issue when i spoke to people around the community were the communication and de obligation issues. the miscommunication issues were mainly caused by the turnover of people. which means the people the community was talking to with fema would go somewhere else and a new person would come in and the community would have to reexplain their situation, which happened several times. that process mistakes were made and miscommunication happens.
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then they gave up the money and now they are de obligating it. so we are now in a financial crisis at the moment. host: can you quabt phi how much money is the school or town waiting on? did they give you that figure? guest: i'm not sure of the current figure, but i believe it was nearly $700,000. guest: so given that, is there a way to change over the staff en -- change over the staff differently? guest: for an agency that's supposed to have a responsibility as large and vast as fema's responsibility
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is, to take care of all the disasters o' -- you have to have the weight behind the congress and president to fully fund the agencies to do the job they are required to do. that is the only answer. second to that, i would only make sure once someone is assigned to a particular disaster, as the decision maker, then i would make sure that that person remains with that disaster as in parkersburg's case, until all issues on file is -- are closed. and it just stounds me that you have -- sounds to me that you have dealt with a lot of different people in turnovers. and in the big scheme of
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things, $700,000 didn't sound like a lot of money, but it is to parkersburg and your school district. like i said in the beginning, to believe this could be solved in a 25-30-minute meeting, it should be able to be hashed out. that's what we do. we solve problems. this problem happened in may of 2008. we're now approaching may of 2011. and i feel sorry for the citizens of your statement, matthew, and for parkersburg, because they are dealing with this shortfall. i wish i could encourage everyone to move through this swiftly to solve the problem. not only this problem in parkersburg, but open, outstanding problems that exist in the government's files so
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far. >> fema its director from 2001-2003 here with us this morning to help us answer questions about disaster response and our first -- -- our caller is on. caller: y'all were talking about hurricane katrina. and when i think back on that, and everything, i lived in arkansas. and yesterday, a monday, was filled with tornado warnings all afternoon. we are thankful that we have a tornado siren. but to get back to hurricane cat, -- hurricane katrina, what
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i think about when i think about that is why did the government not reinforce those levies when they knew that they were not going to hold? plus, on top of that, the people that i blame mostly for some of the things that happened down there is the mayor who did not get the people out when they had buses sitting around to get the people out host: all right. we'll leave it there. guest: she is referring to the worst photo i've ever seen in a disaster response. that would be the parking lot full of the 100 or so buses that could have been used. unfortunately, when leaders or community officials issue warnings, some citizens just refuse to heed the warnings to evacuate, to leave their home.
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i fully understand that. but at the same time those leaders need to put assets in place. that case, the school bus system for those who didn't have transportation, for the elderly who needed to be moved out of the way. one of my greatest nightmares is a hurricane hitting new orleans, a category five or so, because it will destroy, as we've seen in hurricane katrina's instance, a lot of that community. much of that community, particularly the lower ninth ward to my disgust has not been rebuilt yet. money and time has been wasted. individuals have not returned. but again, it is up to the leaders of those communities to set with the government and,
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the only reason they were built to a category three was because of money. they were built years and years and years ago to the technical spessifications that were provided at that time. state of the art science. plus, no one really believed that a category five hurricane would hit new orleans. but it's bound to happen eventually. host: from clums, ohio. -- from columbia, ohio. caller: i want to congratulations matthew on his great job with the video, and it looks like your guest was allegation a volunteer growing up according to some of the sources i've been reading. so maybe the young man would potentially have a position in government. [laughter] caller: hopefully he'll
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continue on with reviewing some of the issues in these other states that are still undergoing fema controversy. i think that would be a good job for him. at any rate, i was wondering about, you know, the fact that when joe, you were working with president bush, and you were on his cabinet as the director of the federal emergency agency and then transferred to the homeland security department and then later left in 2003 and looks like you then went on to support new bridge strategies, which is a private company -- host: diana, we need to get to
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a question. caller: well, i wanted to know with the contracts that are in iraq, is there any way that bring some of that work back into the united states for the people that need jobs here. guest: well, number one, i do not have any contracts in iraq. nor my company. so i appreciate you reading the internet. unfortunately, it's not true. i just am not prepared to respond to what you're talking about. preal because i don't know what you're -- principal my, because i don't know what you're talking about. caller: local preparedness. if local communities are not
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into the news program, national incident program to have their communities set up with their local officials, then be prepared to cover any of the -- any emergency -- last time we had an f-1 go through my community. we had a flood in 2008. our little community of some 900 souls. stepping back to the to seten tornado. it was not certified, and it caused them grief anding a croatian vacation. they didn't get a -- so they suffered through this without fema's help. the government insisted at that time that those local communities must become certified. we did that. i became certified, and it's
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all documentation, and thank you, matthew. you might say, with my film and camera work, i became our local documentor, so that when we had the flood in 2008, i documented as much of that as we could. host: we'll leave it there. joe, what about that? guest: well, he makes a good point. even though wrong. but a lot of communities can help themselves, and again, it gets to personal responsibility whether as an individual or family or community, to come together. make an assessment of where you think you're vulnerable. fema can help you do that. they can help communities plan properly to prepare for potential disasters, even with their building codes. our building codes nationwide today are much stronger because of programs like the ones that fema promotes, to help educate
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-- better educate. plus our sciences did improve dramatically. first and foremost they need to step up to the plate and not always count on some government agency to bail you out. host: to george. caller: the matthew study was very timely. i just heard on the news last night that fema was de obligating some of its response to the recent flooding along the pa sake river in new jersey. this is a chronic problem that involves hundreds of thousands in the communities. and what my point and question is. i understand the army core of engineers has been involved in trying to mitigate some of that problem, because it's been a
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growing problem. not necessarily related to the problem of rainfall. what coordination is there between government agencies between the army's corps of responsiblies and fema's responsibilities under an event that occurs over several storms and you have an accumulation of -- host: my apologies. we have to leave it there. joe? guest: well, he makes a good point in so far as coordination. there was massive coordination when it comes to the flood plain issue. un fortunately, a lot of folks in our country like to be close to water. rivers, lakes, and the oceans on both gulfs. there's an inherent risk and responsibility that goes along with that desire to be along the coast. it might be nice for the government or insurance companies to step up once or
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twice to rebuild for you. but you have a personal responsibility if you want to live in a flood plain, you have to know it's going to flood eventually. that's the purpose of flood plain maps. either five,10, 1,000 years out, it will happen. and we can't always, as a taxpayer, rebuild and pay for rebuilding in low-lying areas. that's why studies need to be completed. and elected officials have to make tough decisions to decide where to build and where not to build. but you as individuals have responsibilities, too. host: matthew, talk about how the town responded. how the people responded to the tornado back in 2008. guest: immediately after the tornado hit, neighbors were helping neighbors. half the town was leveled, but
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there was a good portion that was untouched. and the untouched side of town didn't just stand around. they went immediately to help their neighbors and help them recover, and that was a big part of our relief effort. it was one of the reasons why we are as rebuilt as we are today. host: and matthew, how is the town doing today? guest: the majority of the town is fully rebuilt. people have mostly rebuilt on-site. some of the houses are where they were and things are returned to normal. host: matthew wick. this year's high school winner. thank you for entering the competition. congratulations on winning, and thanks for being here this morning. guest: thank you. host: joe, i also want to thank you. appreciate your time. guest: you bet.

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