tv PBS News Hour PBS December 29, 2016 3:00pm-4:00pm PST
captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> sreenivasan: good evening, i'm hari sreenivasan. judy woodruff is away. on the newshour tonight, the obama administration strikes back, issuing new sanctions against russia for meddling in the u.s. election. also ahead, a new syrian cease- fire is struck-- this time without u.s. input. can the deal hold, bringing the end of a bloody six-year civil war? plus, the best of 2016. the movies that got all the buzz, and the gems that were overlooked. >> you see things you've seen, things many times before, but it's told so much better and so much better that it puts you under a spell. >> sreenivasan: all that and more on tonight's pbs newshour.
>> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> lincoln financial-- committed to helping you take charge of your financial future. >> and by the alfred p. sloan foundation. supporting science, technology, and improved economic performance and financial literacy in the 21st century. >> supported by the rockefeller foundation. promoting the well-being of humanity around the world by building resilience and inclusive economies. more at rockefellerfoundation.org
>> carnegie corporation of new york. supporting innovations in education, democratic engagement, and the advancement of international peace and security. at carnegie.org. >> and with the ongoing support of these institutions: and individals. >> this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. >> sreenivasan: the white house has stated that russian hackers tried to sway the u.s. presidential race. and now, it's laid out the punishment, targeting key leaders and agencies in moscow.
the kremlin had been waiting and watching. today, the white house ended the waiting. president obama announced a range of retaliation for election meddling that the u.s. blames on top levels of the russian government. it includes: sanctions on russian intelligence services, and on top officials in the unit that ordered the hacks. and expulsions of 35 russian diplomats within 72 hours. both the c.i.a. and the f.b.i. have concluded that russia hacked democratic groups, and the e-mails of john podesta, the chairman of hillary clinton's campaign. mr. obama called today's retaliation "a necessary and appropriate response"... not just to the hacking, but to "aggressive harassment of u.s. officials" in moscow. he also said the u.s. may take other actions "at a time and place of (its) choosing, some of which will not be publicized". president-elect trump has played down the hacking, as he did again last night: >> i think we ought to get on with our lives.
i think that computers have complicated lives very greatly. the whole age of computer has made it where nobody knows exactly what is going on. >> sreenivasan: moscow today dismissed the u.s. announcement. a spokesman for president vladimir putin said he regrets the move and will consider counter-measures of his own. in the meantime, a u.s. government report detailing russian meddling in american elections is due out in the coming days. several top republicans in congress said the president's sanctions are overdue. they plan to push for tougher action. we'll hear from the top homeland security official at the white house, after the news summary. the u.s. had no role in the day's second major development, but russia did: the announcement of a nationwide cease-fire in syria. the syrian military said it was taking effect at midnight, local time, and most rebel groups signaled they'd accept it. a full report, later in the program. in the day's other news, iraqi security forces launched the second phase of their offensive to retake mosul from the islamic state group. the new assault focused on
several eastern neighborhoods in the country's second-largest city. smoke could be seen rising above the skyline as elite special forces and army troops fought their way deeper into the city. it's the last major stronghold for isis in iraq. russia's military says flight recorders show no evidence of an explosion on a transport plane that crashed in the black sea. but, as workers pulled out more wreckage today, a russian general in moscow said investigators have not ruled out a terrorist act. >> ( translated ): other than an explosion on board there could have been some mechanical impact. a terror attack doesn't always involve an explosion. the flight was quite normal but one of the pilots' sentences and an analysis of it, tells us about the beginning of a special situation, about the beginning of it developing and nothing else yet. >> sreenivasan: the general offered no detail on what that "special situation" involved. earlier in the week, the main russian intelligence agency had dismissed terrorism as a possible cause. the crash killed all 92 people on board. in germany, officials have
released a man they detained yesterday, in last week's berlin truck attack. prosecutors had said his phone number was found in the phone of the attack's main suspect, anis amri. he was killed last week in italy. today, authorities said the man was not in contact with amri after all. back in this country, wall street struggled again. the dow jones industrial average was down about 14 points to close below 19,820. the nasdaq fell six points, and the s&p 500 lost a fraction. and, the death of actress debbie reynolds left generations of fans stunned today. news of her passing came last night, just 24 hours after her daughter, carrie fisher, had died. jeffrey brown looks at reynolds' life and career. ♪ ♪ >> brown: debbie reynolds was just 19 in 1952 when she appeared alongside gene kelly and donald o'connor in "singin' in the rain." she later told the american film institute she simply didn't know enough to fear the challenge:
you're not afraid, and i wasn't afraid, you know i was so dumb, and i didn't feel you could fail. i felt it was me and i really just marched straight ahead and i wasn't frightened of the huge task. >> brown: reynolds would act, sing and dance her way through the decades, in films like "tammy and the bachelor," "how the west was won," and 1964's "the unsinkable molly brown," a rags to riches tale that would earn reynolds her only oscar-nomination. she may have been just as famous for her personal life: most of all her 1955 marriage to the pop music idol eddie fisher, and their divorce amid his affair and then marriage to elizabeth taylor. but her career continued in films like "the singing nun," and in 1973 she introduced herself to younger generations as the voice of charlotte in a
film version of "charlotte's web": >> ♪ the autumn days grow short and cold and christmastime again >> brown: in the 1990s, reynolds played the titular role in "mother," opposite albert brooks. and she appeared on sitcoms including "will and grace" and more movies until just recently. at the 2015 screen actors' guild awards, her daughter presented reynolds with the lifetime achievement award. >> and my favorite movie was "the unsinkable molly brown," in the film i sang "i ain't down yet." well, i ain't. thank you very much for this wonderful honor. >> brown: yesterday, one day after her daughter's unexpected death, reyonlds suffered a stroke and was rushed to a los angeles hospital, where she died. she was 84 years old. >> sreenivasan: still to come on the newshour: the u.s. retaliates against
russia for cyber hacks leading up to the election. will a russian-brokered cease- fire help end the syrian civil war? the global economic outlook of a newly tapped trump advisor, and much more. >> sreenivasan: now, the administration's imposition of sanctions against russia for trying to influence the vote during the presidential election. i spoke earlier today with lisa monaco, the assistant to president obama for homeland security and counterterrorism. i began our conversation asking her about the impact of the new sanctions. >> so the impact is to make clear that we are imposing consequences for russian aggression and their interference and attempts to interfere in our political process, specifically the impact is for the individuals who have been sanctioned. it imposes a travel ban and
inhibits anybody from doing and bars anybody from conducting financial transactions with them. importantly, also, what we often see is the international financial system and european banks and others who would take steps to follow our lead when we take these types of actions, so it can have a ripple effect and impose real consequences. >> sreenivasan: considering these are the actions you've decided to publicize, are these enough of a proportionate response to russian meddling in the u.s. election? >> well, i think we should always be asking the question are we h hitting the right balance, and we have decided to take these actions quite deliberately, and we've done so with precincts, consistent with what's going to be in our national interest and what's going to protect our national security. what i think we should be very clear about is the actions taken today are done in response to a range of russian aggressive behavior, both harrisment and mistreatment of our personnel in
moscow and, of course, the accomplishes cyberactivities against our and efforts to interfere in our election process, but these actions today follow very clear steps that we took earlier this year, the unprecedented disclosure and attribution to the highest levels of the russian government done in the statement from the d.n.i. and the secretary of homeland security back in october making quite clear that we attribute the efforts to interfere in our election to the russian government, and these actions today also follow repeated both public and private warnings to the russian government, including at the level of the president, and these actions also follow extensive outreach to state and local governments to shore up their cyber defenses ahead of the election because, of course, we are focused very keenly on maintaining the integrity of our election process, and these are actions also follow our extensive briefing of congress. >> sreenivasan: how much is
based on concern that the incoming administration might not take this step? >> so these actions are taken deliberately and precincts because we feel it is very important to make clear both to russia and to any other actors that there will be consequences for violating norms of international behavior both with respect to mistreatment of our diplomatic personnel and with respect tot accomplishes cyberactivity. >> sreenivasan: you mentioned in this lone report, government administrations, think tanks, universities, political organizations and corporations all hacked. so besides the d.n.c., who else was hacked? were the republicans hacked as well? >> so i'll leave that to the intelligence and law enforcement experts to detail in their reporting and in their investigation, but what you're referencing there is the statement we've made already from the intelligence community and elsewhere that russia has become an increasingly
aggressive actor and has engaged in a years' long campaign in malicious cyberactivity across a range of public and private sector institutions. >> sreenivasan: since you've laid out you know who and how they're doing this, can you say with certainty if the hacks have stopped and have we defended against them? >> what we did over the summer is to be very clear about what the threat is, and we did that by briefing both congress and state and local officials who, of course, own and operate and manage the electoral infrastructure in this country and enable them to take steps to defend themselves and provide them assistance in shoring up their defenses. so we also were very clear, during the election season and on election day, that we were monitoring and making sure that there had not been an increase in that accomplishes activity, and we did not see an increase
and, indeed, we are confident in the outcome that there was not a accomplishes cyber meddling such that it affected the vote count or the vote of operations. >> sreenivasan: so have all these think tanks and universities and important infrastructure entities, have they all been alerted of the types of attacks and what they need to do and are we safer now that this information is out there? >> i think one of the steps we are taking today in the responses we are issuing is very importantly to expose russian activity, and, so, one of the elements of the announcement that we made today is a report by the department of homeland security and the f.b.i. that provides technical information that will allow network defenders -- that's the owners and operationers of systems both in the public and private sector -- to use that information to defend themselves. so we're exposing the russian tactics, techniques and procedures that they use to infiltrate our systems, allowing network defenders to defend
themselves and, importantly, making it harder and more complicated for these ma lyrics bad actors to undertake these activities. we're basically forcing them to reengineer their approaches. >> reporter: lisa monaco from the white house, thanks so much. >> thank you. >> sreenivasan: this evening, in a statement, president-elect trump said "it's time for our country to move on to bigger and better things." but he said that in the interests of the nation, he'll meet with intelligence chiefs next week on the russian hacking. >> sreenivasan: the russians and turks announced a cease-fire deal among some of the warring parties in syria. it is due to take effect at midnight, local time. margaret warner has the story. >> warner: confirmation came from the kremlin, and russian president vladimir putin: >> ( translated ): the agreements reached are of course fragile and need special attention. but this is a notable result of
our joint work and efforts by our partners in the region. >> warner: one of those partners, turkish president recep tayyip erdogan, called it an historic chance. >> ( translated ): we have an opportunity to stop the bloodshed in syria with a political solution. we must not squander this chance. >> warner: russia has been a critical backer of syrian president bashar al-assad, while turkey had pressed for his ouster. but they joined to work out this cease-fire, and plans for future peace talks in kazakhstan. the russians say rebel groups numbering more than 60,000 fighters are taking part. they include the western-backed free syrian army. >> ( translated ): during the talks, the russian government guaranteed to us that they will keep the syrian regime forces and their allies under control. >> warner: other groups are excluded: the islamic state, which controls a swath of eastern syria, the al-qaeda offshoot jabhat al-fateh al-sham in the northwest, and the
kurdish militia y.p.g. battling islamic state's forces in cooperation with the u.s. iran is also a major ally of the assad government, and is expected to be involved in peace talks. absent entirely from the negotiations: the united states. three years of talks between secretary of state john kerry and his russian counterpart sergei lavrov produced a number of cease fires, but they didn't hold. instead, 15 months ago russia launched a fierce bombing campaign to bolster the syrian regime. earlier this month, the rebel stronghold in eastern aleppo finally fell. nonetheless, the state department voiced support for the truce today, saying: "any effort that stops the violence, saves lives, and creates the conditions for political negotiations would be welcome." russian foreign minister lavrov said today the incoming trump administration would be welcome to join the peace talks in kazakhstan. >> sreenivasan: william brangham takes it from here. >> brangham: so will this latest cease fire last where others
have failed? for that, i'm joined now via skpe from tuscon by andrew tabe- lurr, who's a fellow at the washington institute for near east policy. and joshua landis, who directs the center for middle east studies at the university of oklahoma. welcome to you both. josha landis, i would like to start with you first. we have seen cease fires come and. go are you at all confident that this one is going to last? >> no, i'm not confident. this is really not about the cease fire holding. it's about turkey being involved with russia and iran and essentially letting the rebels know that a new page has been turned, that turkey cannot keep its -- cannot keep its door open to the rebels and it's closing the door and that they're going to have to fend for themselves in negotiations with the assad
regime. >> brangham: andrew tabe-lurr, take that up. is it your sense that this will hold? are some positive this might be the beginning to have the end to have the war in syria? >> i'm also skeptical. i think it's impossible to tell. i think it's very interesting that, after the capture of aleppo and we were in this situation, i agree it's important turkey is involved and on this kind of level with the russians and the u.s. if the room, that's new territory. what's also interesting is by pausing now and going into diplomacy, i think it shows that the russians are setting the table for president-elect trump to become involved in some sort of diplomatic process and a diplomatic process that is with assad remaining but large parts of the country being outside his control and potentially in the hands of the rebels. >> brangham: there is obviously a lot to unpack in there. josha landis, help us understand for people who haven't been following this all along, let's talk about, what's turkey's very
complicated role in this fight been so far? >> turkey has been a crossroads. the territory has a 500-mail border with syria and, across that border, has traveled almost all the arms, the money, help, the fighters that are going into syria to sustain this revolt against assad. the russians, syrians, iranians have been pressuring turkey to shut the door on that cross border traffic. turkey is beginning to turn away from support for the rebels, and that is partially because of trump's election in which he said he would work with elections and he turned his nose up at the rebels saying we don't know who they are and suggesting they're worse than assad. and so this is an about-face. the fact that the united states is not at the table is very important because it has allowed these talks to go forward without the u.s. and, in a sense, the u.s. has signaled to the rebels it's not got their back, it's not going to continue to shovel and help arms get
through to the rebels. so this is a new day for the rebels, who have to think hard about what their future strategy is. >> brangham: andrew tabe-lurr, let's just continue with that. a certain number of remember groups are part of the cease fire agreement. some of this, many others are not. what happens to those who are not at the peace talks now? >> those that are left out of the agreement would be subject to russian aviation strikes as well as regime airstrikes and also other kinds of operations. so those who sign on to it essentially go into the cease fire and turkey guarantees the rebelrebels to stop their attacd the regime to stop their attacks. it's a potential way to tamp down the violence, at least in part of the country, but it will also allow russia -- the regime and also the united states to
more fully target i.s.i.s. and al quaida affiliates. so it could focus fire on extremist groups in that way. >> brangham: joshua, what happens now? looks like assad is not going to be dislodged from power, he is going to have control of some substantial majority of his country going forward barring unforeseen development. what's happening with him going forward? >> well, i think he's determined to conquer all of the country, and the united states is busy destroying i.s.i.s., which owns, perhaps, 30%, 35% of the syrian territory, and that will most likely be inherited by assad, who is standing by, waiting for the continued collapse of i.s.i.s. he will continue to go after the al quaida-dominated areas with russian help and hope to scoop those up as well. turkey has made a statement with iran and russia just the other
day that everyone is to respect syria's sovereignty. now, that is code word for not dividing up syria, and that means that assad will take back his country, i believe. there are people who believe this means the dividing up of syria, that there will be a rebel territory, a turkish territory, an assad territory. i don't believe that's the case. i think russia is squarely on the side of assad and muscling turkey to fall into line. >> brangham: andrew, are we looking at a divided syria or not? >> i think assad might be able to come back over to his territory but the timeline is near due to manpower issues. so what we could have is the russians saying assad stays on because there is no alternative. meanwhile, i think they will look for opportunities with the turks in the northern part of
syria, the corks have carved out a de facto safe zone, they call it, that could be the base for rebel support from turkey. we'll have to see if president-elect donald trump wants to jump on that. last week, president-elect trump said that he was going to build beautiful bases inside turkey. it could be the base for some kind of ground operation against i.s.i.s. in the part of syria. >> brangham: the trump administration son its way to power. what do you think he would do once he's handed thi this moras? >> he says he wants to be on the side of putin and destroy i.s.i.s. i don't believe he'll get hunks of syria under american or turkish control. i think syria is trying to
rebuild after the economy is in a tail spin, failed coup, terrorist attacks, war with the kurds, turkey is trying to get back to normal and that means finding a way out of the syrian quagmire. it wants one thing guaranteed and that is that the kurds do not hive off and create their own state. russia and bashar al-assad can offer him those guarantees, and they will ask him to withdraw from syria in order to give him those guarantees, and i think that is the basis for future talks between turkey, russia and assad. >> brangham: josha landis, andrew tabe-lurr, thank you both very much. >> pleasure. ressure. >> sreenivasan: stay with us, coming up on the newshour, california's attempt to manage the pros and cons of growing marijuana.
the best movies and actors of 2016. and letters to our own gwen ifill from female journalists of color. but first, a profile of the president-elect's top adviser on trade. it's been very clear during the campaign, and in the transition since the election, that economist peter navarro seems to have the ear of mr. trump. he's a tough critic of the u.s.'s trade relationship with china. our economics correspondent, paul solman, sat down with him late last summer and looked more closely at his beliefs. here's a reprise of that story, part of our weekly series on "making sense." >> china. china. china. china. china. china. china. china. china. china all the time. china. >> reporter: given donald trump's persistently pointed pivot to asia, small wonder that among his favorite films is "death by china." >> china has stolen thousands of our factories and millions of our jobs, multinational corporation profits are soaring, and we now owe over $3 trillion to the world's largest communist nation.
>> reporter: and small wonder the film's writer/director, peter navarro, sounds like the candidate. >> we're going right down the toilet and it's a made in china toilet. >> reporter: navarro, a harvard- trained professor at u.c. irvine, is the sole trump economic adviser with a ph.d. so how'd you get interested in and worried about china? >> i teach m.b.a.'s and i noticed starting a few years after china joined the world trade organization that a lot of my students were no longer employed. they were still coming to get their m.b.a.'s but they'd lost their jobs. so i started to ask questions why. and at that point, all roads were leading to beijing. >> reporter: navarro has done plenty of technical work in economics, is a pioneer in online learning. but he began focusing on china just a few years ago. >> the defining moment in american economic history is when bill clinton lobbied to get china into the world trade organization. it was the worst political and economic mistake in american history in the last 100 years. >> reporter: in the last 100 years? >> in the last 100 years, yes.
china went into the world trade organization and agreed to play by certain rules. instead, they are illegally subsidizing their exports; manipulating their currency; stealing all of our intellectual property; using sweatshops; using pollution havens. what happens is our businesses and workers are playing that game with two hands tied behind their back. >> reporter: navarro says you can even see the effects at u.c. irvine, where he says chinese students, paying triple the in- state tuition rate, are displacing native californians, while the chinese parents are scooping up local real estate. >> generally all cash deals. >> reporter: so your argument is unfair trade practices; they amass dollars; they bring the dollars back here; they buy up property, and they drive up real estate prices. >> that's right, they drive up rents for younger people, they drive up home prices for first- time home-buyers. so it's not just that we're losing jobs and factories-- we're giving away our homes, our businesses, our companies, our technologies. >> reporter: but of course we
heard the same alarm about japan in the 1980s. a false alarm. but china is different, says navarro... so much bigger. >> we are going to enforce all trade violations against any country that cheats. >> reporter: so one of the answers donald trump, provides is: we should have protective tariffs on chinese goods. >> wrong word. wrong word. >> reporter: what's wrong? >> donald trump is not a protectionist. all he wants to do is defend america against unfair trade practices. >> well, defend, protect. >> very different. trade is good. tariffs and the threat of tariffs are a negotiating tool to require countries like china to stop their unfair trade practices. that's the mission. >> reporter: and how much do you imagine it might cost in the increase in the price of goods at, say, walmart?
>> any increase would be less than the paycheck that all these people would be getting, both in terms of actually having a job, plus wages rising again. >> reporter: if the jobs actually were to actually come back, that is. >> trump trade doctrine is this: america will trade with any country, so long as that deal meets these three criteria: you increase the g.d.p. growth rate. you decrease the trade deficit, and you strengthen the manufacturing base. >> reporter: but isn't technology responsible for the elimination of american factory jobs? >> certainly technology has played a part, but the dramatic change from five and a half decades of 3.5% rate of growth prior to china entering our markets with illegally subsidized goods and the 1.8% afterwards suggests strongly that china has played an enormous role in the decline and downfall of the american economy
and i can show on a blackboard exactly why. >> reporter: now your typical economist would hardly agree. but hey, says navarro, your typical economist still believes in the old so-called "keynesian" approach to reviving the economy: >> alright paul, the growth of any nation is simply four things... >> reporter: more "c" for consumption, by consumers and more "g," government spending. he and trump, however, will supposedly flip the script: stimulating more "i." investment, by business, via tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations, while boosting net exports, with more "x," exports, and less m, imports, through new trade deals. that's exports minus imports. >> that's right. >> reporter: of course, if that's a negative number, that is you have more imports than exports. >> this is the big kahuna. this is what donald trump understands. this is the trade deficit. we run a trade deficit of close to $800 billion a year. and so this directly subtracts from this. this is why we're stuck in low
growth mode. >> reporter: well maybe. the job of a journalist, however, is to ask questions. what is u.s. g.d.p. 2016? >> checking on that. >> reporter: happily, there's now siri to answer them. >> it looks like the answer is about $18.2 trillion u.s. dollars per year. >> reporter: in that case... g.d.p. is something like $18 trillion, right? and you're saying that the trade deficit is, well, it's less than $1 trillion, right? so this can't be a major factor in total g.d.p.: the size of the economy. >> yes, but when we run these big trade deficits and send our jobs offshore, we hold our wages down and our income down. that feeds right back into the biggest part of this whole equation, consumption. this drags g.d.p. down as well. >> reporter: or so this story goes. when you hear the criticism about donald trump's own goods being made in other countries,
what's your reaction? do me a favor: play dan slane's clip in my death by china movie. it's priceless. >> reporter: slane was a plywood manufacturer in bowling green, kentucky whose competitors moved to china. >> and i opened up three factories in china and delivered to the customer in the united states 50% cheaper than i could make it in bowling green. >> he winds up selling product back here into the u.s. at cost. how did he make his money? >> every month, the chinese government would send me a check for 17% of my exports, and that was my net margin and my profit. >> reporter: so is donald trump getting checks from the chinese government? >> that's how the game works. >> reporter: but he could use american companies. there are lots of people who say "made in u.s.a." and use that as a marketing tool. >> the point here is he can't. the competitive forces that force a dan slane to take his furniture company to china - they're real, okay? and if you try and take the high
ground and produce here in america, when china's dumping product in and manipulating their currency, you go out of business. you just go out of business. >> reporter: what about the character issues that surround donald trump? >> well, look, i don't go there. i focus on policy. that's my job. >> reporter: and you have no problem with the failed companies? >> no one should be surprised just because somebody isn't successful 100% of the time. the metric here, he's a billionaire. he's successful. >> reporter: and no matter how much money he actually has or hasn't got, given that donald
trump is the president elect of the united states, no can argue with one thing: that he isn't successful. to date, at least. newshour economics correspondent paul solman, reporting from irvine, california. >> sreenivasan: in november, four more states voted to legalize recreational marijuana, bringing the total number to seven. with more states loosening restrictions, cities and counties are seeking ways to regulate cannabis farming. one county in california is starting a pilot project to keep the substance off the black market and as producer sheraz >> reporter: nearly 300 miles north of san francisco, thick redwoods reach to the sky. in this land of giants, the buzz of sawmills and the splash of fishing nets once signaled a booming economy. today, there's another industry in humboldt county that is thriving and driving up demand for goods and services. >> so your total will be $3,023.99 after tax. >> reporter: from leaf trimming machines to water storage services and specialty soils, marijuana, or cannabis as it's also known, is big business in
humboldt county. >> humboldt county is the napa of cannabis. it is by far and away the largest production zone of high quality cannabis in the world. >> reporter: and for the first time in nearly 50 years, it's coming out of the shadows through a bold new experiment that allows people to legally grow medical cannabis for profit. >> i believe that instead of complaining about the smell of cannabis, the people of humboldt county will realize that that's the smell of cultivating local prosperity. >> reporter: patrick murphy is the co-owner of emerald family farms, a collective of cannabis farmers. >> we would like to create an industry that is both environmentally and economically sustainable. >> reporter: farmers like murphy are now required to register with the county so they can get permits to legally grow medical cannabis, just as they would
other crops. size limits apply, depending on how the crop is grown, and whether it's new or existing cultivation. >> the limit for new cultivation is 10,000 square feet, or about a quarter of an acre. existing operations, we've allowed all the way up to one acre in size. >> reporter: steve lazar is a senior planner at the planning and building department in eureka. he helped write the county's new rules as "a green rush" has been taking off in the forested hills of humboldt. >> so here we're looking at a photograph from 2006, the photograph shows an area near looking at it, you can see a forested area. but by 2015, this area is now host to easily 20 to 30 different cultivation operations. there's 10,000 or more cannabis cultivation sites in humboldt county alone. >> reporter: people from all over the world are rushing to humboldt to cultivate cannabis. but the lure of pot profits is straining local watersheds and
threatening endangered salmon. >> we put a million dollars into a watershed to restore fish there. and i go out on a site and i see a million dollars in, in habitat damage. >> reporter: scott bauer is a scientist with the california department of fish and wildlife. >> typically, on an enforcement activity, we see illegal road grading, bulldozers pushing dirt into streams. we see people diverting water, and in fact, taking most of the water out of the stream to cultivate marijuana. >> reporter: bauer and his team not only fine growers for breaking environmental laws, they also give permits to legally take water from rivers and streams. >> we would like every marijuana cultivator to get a permit from the department to divert water. and when someone does that, we condition our permit to say essentially you can't have any water in the summertime. you need to take water in the wintertime and store it for use later. >> good morning. >> hi, how're you doing?
>> fantastic. the old back is hurting a little bit. >> reporter: cannabis has been legal to use in california for medical purposes since 1996. >> it's got a great look, it's got a great smell. >> reporter: patients could also grow cannabis and supply it to dispensaries as long as they didn't profit from it. but all that will change in 2018. that's when california will begin issuing licenses for commercial medical cannabis activities. until then, counties and cities are trying to regulate the cannabis industry at the local level. >> basically, now we can call a spade a spade, profit is part of being a farmer, whether you're growing cannabis or tomatoes. >> reporter: maybe so, but it's still illegal at the federal level to grow or sell cannabis. >> every cannabis cultivator lives with the fear of having their children taken away from them, having financial ruin. everybody lives in fear of law enforcement. >> reporter: 2,300 people in humboldt have come forward to register with the county's new program. but according to the local sheriff, only a fraction of the
county's pot goes to patients. >> i'd say 95% of the marijuana growing in humboldt county and possibly higher is actually going to the black market. >> reporter: the sheriff's office conducts roughly 100 raids a year, targeting the biggest and most damaging marijuana grows. >> what we have here is typically evidence that has been found in a marijuana grow that's been seized by the humboldt county sheriff's office. we have processed marijuana. we have the typical firearms that are seized in, in a marijuana grow. ak-47 assault weapons, we have m-14 rifles, and this is what they use to protect their marijuana. >> reporter: it may also get easier to keep some of the county's cannabis out of the black market where it can fetch $4,000 a pound. under humboldt's new track and trace program, each farmer gets a set of stamps bearing codes that are unique to them. in this demo, a bag of processed cannabis is sealed with a stamp and verified online as it moves through the supply chain.
>> okay, the code looks good, let's verify now with the mobile app for proof of origin. >> reporter: for the first time, a patient at a california dispensary will be able to quickly check that a product was grown in humboldt and see its lab test results. from farmers to dispensary owners, 15 people are taking part in this pilot program. but as one fear subsides, another grows for the future of a community built around cannabis. >> i believe that 10 years from now, it will be legalized. i believe that it'll be grown all over the west coast. and i believe the price per pound is going to become so low that, that the industry is going to be driven out of humboldt county >> the fears from the community is that the people that started this movement, will not have a place in the future. and it will only happen if we do not take part, if we do not stand up and let our voices be heard as the heart and soul of the cannabis industry. >> reporter: for the pbs newshour, i'm sheraz sadiq in humboldt county.
>> sreenivasan: now we continue our series on the best of the year in arts. tonight, what stood out in the world of movies. jeffrey brown is back with our conversation. >> brown: and we are joined by two of our steadfast and stalwart film critics, ann hornaday of "the washington post" and mike sargent of pacifico radio. welcome back to both of you. >> thank you. >> brown: let's start with a round up of the top five. >> "moonlight, "manchester by the sea," "hell or high water," a terrific contemporary western, "a little father's son" serial comic drama, and finally "oj: made in america," the amazing o.j. simpson. >> brown: that had a film release. >> indeed.
>> brown: mark mark, top five. the top one is a film called "arrival" which is a science fiction about aliens landing and us trying to communicate, then mel gibson's "hacksaw ridge" which is about desmond doss who won the medal of honor without firing one bullet. then i have a "purge election year," a purge is something that happens once a year in this future dispopian america where once a year you get to purge and violence is legal for 24 hours. this film actually does what the premise should have done in the first two films, and i really like it. then i have "moonlight," which i like as much as ann did. then a film "eye in the sky" with helen mirren, final performance of alan rickman, but a film not to be missed. >> brown: let's watch a clip from moonlight. >> what do you smell?
nothing. you got? >> i'm feeling good. you ain't it. stop putting your head down in my house. you know my rule. it's all love and all pride in this house. you feel me? >> brown: so an unusual film in many ways, episodic. takes one man through three different actors. >> indeed, exactly. it's a young boy's story, as you said, told in three distinct chapters, first when he is a young boy, as a teenager and then as a young man, and it's about a person coming of age in poverty, in this case in liberty city, miami. the scene we saw features janelle monet in a breakout performance and she's in "hidden figures," also. >> brown: known as a singer/musician and she's a great actress. >> she's just a great actress. it's a very tender, observant,
as mic said, it takes all the kind of tropes of a coming of age story and turns them inside out and makes them so independent pat. and jenkins kind of, his point of view is a little askance, a little askew so that you're not getting the conventional beat of a person's life, you're getting the in between times that are sometimes more meaningful. >> brown: mike, you singled out "arrival." a scene from that. (radio) >> you needed to see me. she's walking toward the screen. >> now, that's an introduction. >> brown: what do you love about "arrival," mike? >> i love pretty much about --
pretty much everything about this film. it says a lot about the human condition. it deals with the issues of communication, how and why we communicate, what the nature of that is, what the issues are between nations, how we don't get along and are on the verge of war throughout the story, and it deals with time and just how we -- what our relationship is to time. the movie is, in many ways, like a large twilight zone episode, but it's beautifully shot and acted. the aliens are very powerful and meaningful, and i don't want to give too much away, but the way in which the aliens communicate is such an imaginative, and it's just a beautiful film that to me works on every level. >> brown: we asked both of you to pick an acting performance that stood out for you. ann, you chose casey affleck in "manchester by the sea." let's take a quick look. >> i don't understand.
which part are you having trouble with? >> well, i can't be the guardian. >> well -- i mean, i can't. naturally, i assumed joe had discussed all of this with you. >> no, he didn't. no. >> brown: what stood out there? >> it's a very interior performance. the thing about lonergan's movies is it's really about subtext. when it's about subtext the actor has to provide for the audience, all the subterranean emotions going on under the dialogue and affleck does it brilliantly. >> brown: mike, you biked viola davis in "fences." >> it's not easy for me to admit i have been standing in the same
place for 18 years! >> i have been standing with you! i have been right here with you, troy! i got a life, too! i got 18 years of my life standing in the same spot as you! don't you think i ever wanted other things? don't you think i had dreams and hopes? what aut my life? what about me? >> brown: mike, viola davis. viola davis is one of those actresses who is transformative. she becomes the character who she is in this. this is based on the play by august wilson, a first in the series of plays he's done about black life in america during a specific period, and viola davis is, though she's probably going to be nominated as best supporting actress for this, she really, whenever she's on screen, she just takes it. she's won an emy, she's won a tony, and i think she may be one of those few actresses that will win all three and win an oscar. she moves you and she really
does in this film. >> brown: before we go, give us something that maybe we missed altogether that you want to recommend to us. >> i would recommend a film called "tanna" which is essentially a romeo and juliet story but it's told by an indigenous people, indigenous actors, actually australia's entry for the oscars and made the short list for best foreign film this year. it's a beautifully shot film. it's in another language, but so much of it is about the dialogue and what's going on. they're star-crossed lovers in a tribe where you can't get together, and i have to say it's an amazing film. >> brown: all right. ann hornaday. >> this is a tough one because there are a lot, but i loved watching "a bigger splash." it's from the italian director, starring tillda swinton as a rock star who is in italy with her boyfriend/his, i think, who is a filmmaker.
she has laryngitis. it is so luxurious. the clothes, se -- she's beautiful, then rif rafe shows s mischievous and watching him dance to the rolling stone song is the rice of admission alone. >> brown: 2016 films. ann hornaday, mike sargent, thank you so much. >> sreenivasan: tomorrow, the best music from 2016 with a pair of critics, including ann powers of npr. beyonce's big year is part of that, but there's much more too, including a new album by her sister. >> i don't understand's sister released very beautiful, introive album called a seat at the table that reflected a political moment in a very different way. if beyonce was forced out there, solange was quiet, thinking, meditating and dreaming. >> sreenivasan: and we want to
hear from you. tell us what you loved in books, movies, tv and music in 2016. leave your picks in a comment on our art beat page. you can find all of our "best of 2016" arts segments there as well. >> sreenivasan: as we come to the end of the year, another remembrance of our friend and colleague gwen ifill. she was a pioneer in several ways, and particularly encouraging to young women journalists of color. have a listen. >> "dear gwen." ," thank you for calling me and knowing my name. >> for the time i showed up to your studio with straight hair because everybody knows this isn't polished! >> i think knowing myself and my name is owning who i am and it's so important that you told me that. >> you gave me a look that was
something like -- and then you said, you know, you don't have to do that here. at the meant the world to me. >> when you're young, you don't really think about how important it is to see people who are a man or woman of color in those positions. >> you were a beacon for so many of us, women of color especially. we wanted to bad -- who wand so badly to see themselves reflected in the media. >> i saw older white guys on tv behind the anchors. but there you were, a beacon of hope in a sea of white faces. >> the fact you were covering the white house, that meant i could go and pursue a career and become a journalist. >> all young journalists of color and women in particular all looked to you as an example. >> i can remember when i interviewed for this job at
"newshour" and they asked me why i wanted to work here and for me the answer was simple, it was you. >> i remember at the gridiron dinner a few years ago, you pulled me aside and said what are you covering now? i said foreign policy. your eyes lit up and said, great! i need more people of color to come on the show and talk about foreign policy! >> i just knew i had made it. i was on "washington week" with gwen ifill. you respected them, and to have your respect in that moment on those shows was very important. >> you, a success -- you, as successful as you were and as prominent, read my work and took the time to encourage me. >> you saw me. you saw me for who i was, and you were proud of me.
>> i admired you and judy woodruff for showing me that two female co-anchors could be a norm instead of the exception. >> now more than ever we're at a place where we need journalists like us. >> we owe you our gratitude. so as i stand here with tears in my eyes thinking of how much we've lost with your passing -- >> there will never be another gwen ifill. there will never be another you. >> we will miss your journalism, all of us. >> dear gwen, i am going to really, really, really, really miss you, but i'm also going to really, really, really try to make you proud. >> by being the hands, the model, a mother to young women who may one day see me, see a woman who looks like me and you and know that she can, too. >> thank you from the bottom of
my heart. >> thank you, gwen. >> sreenivasan: yesterday, in gwen's honor, we took a field trip to a research lab at the national cancer institute. we got an update from the trenches on the state of cancer research and helped raise money for the gwen ifill fund for journalism excellence. i actually came to a lab at n.i.h. and did cancer research, and it was while i was doing that research i lost my right eye due to ocular melanoma. a cancer researcher working at the n.i.h. and lose your right eye to a cancer. >> exactly. and, so, you know, losing that eye affected my depth perception and made it so that i couldn't operate as a surgeon, so i retrained in internal medicine and medical oncology, and then i came back and started kind of a related but somewhat new line of research which is what i'm doing now. >> sreenivasan: find that online at >> sreenivasan: you can find that on our facebook page. that's facebook.com/newshour.
and that's the newshour for tonight. i'm hari sreenivasan. join us online, and again here tomorrow evening. for all of us at the pbs newshour, thank you and good night. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> lincoln financial-- committed to helping you take charge of your financial future. >> and with the ongoing support of these institutions >> this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org
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