tv KQED Newsroom PBS December 21, 2018 7:00pm-7:31pm PST
tonight on "kqed newsroom," as governor jerry brown to leave office, we talk with him about his life, legacy, and his hopes for california's future. plus from a e midterlection that altered the nation's power balance to troubling revelations about big tech, a look back some of the top stories of 2018. >> and comedian paula poundstone on politics, podcasts, and performing without a script. we'll hear how got her start in stand-up right here in sn ancisco. hello and welcome to "kqed newsroom." inm thuy vu. we b with governor jerry brown's farewell. he's leaving office janua, 7th handing off theaton to governor elect gavin newsom. during his tenure, he reversed the state's fiscal woes and is leaving a suplus of $30 billion. he oversaw a broad overhaul of
the state's criminal juanice system fought for policies to combat climate change amid multiple challenges from the trump administration. kqed's politics and governmentn editor scott shafer satow down with at the dpo governor's mansion. >> thank you for joining us on kqed. how are you feeling the final days in office? >> feel good. it's very grsing. there's a lot to do. we have some regulato ssues. we've got some lawsuits. we have personnel questions. so i got plenty to do over the next almost three weeks. >> you came into office, and it was a mess, right? there were questions about whether california was even governable. there was a $26 billion deficit, a big drecession. there's an expression, never let a good crisis go to waste. >> yeah. >> i'm wondering you feel like you used that crisis to do things you might not have otherwise been able to do? >> well, we got things so without that fiscal crisis, we probably wouldn't have had
the fund. we wouldn't have h c thes we made. and we might not have had the tax increase tha proposition 30 was. so those were all things that responded to a clear problem that prented real threats. but that's what government is. it's challenge and response. you get a challenge, and you got to respond. if there's no challenge, we'd all be asleep. there wod be nothing to do. but that was a particularlyul diffperiod. millions of people lost their homes. millions of people lost their jobs. that was a very unusual perio and it did provide the stimulus for a lot of things we did later tn. >> to what ext were there things that you did because you felt you had to, but you didn't necessarily want to? one thing i'm thinking of is gettget getting rid of the redevelopment agents. were there things you would have liked not to in terms -- >> redevelopment siphoned money from theschools, and the schools needed money.
mony people think they still need y. teachers not overly paid in any sense. redevelopment, there were plenty of abuses. a lot of people wanted to see it go, and it d free up almost $2 billion a year for schools. and if people want to bri it back, they're going to take billions from the schools. i would assume those people who hre about california public schools will fight that very hard. >> yeah. you have made, among other things, criminal justice reform really one of the hallmarks of your eight years in office. and part of that wa due to the federal court saying you've got to reduce the prison population. but you went well beyond, i th nk, what needed to be done to do that, to accomplish that. i'm wondering why was that such a signature, important issue for you? >> well, first of l, because there are so damn many people locked up. a couple years before became governor, there were over00 17principally men, principally low income men of color and not all that well educated for the most part all
locked up in cages. some people call it the gulag western-style. now, go back a few decades, and there were 20,000, 25,000, 28,000 locked up. we had 12 prisons. now we all of a sudden went on a prison building binge, which i'm sure the legislature really didn't think through, and we go up to 35 prisons. yet the number of felonies isn't that much different fromhe '70s. so why would you more than double your prison m ande than quadruple the number of inmates? so that tells me we need to . refo yes, there are very dangerous people. horrible things have been dead. art human beings are capable of transformation capable of change. and we want to make that change more likely by having the right ki environment. gr prisons, in jails, in alternative prs, and having sentencing policy that makes sense. >> another big issue fo you is
the environment and climate change. do you feel like you accomplished everything y wanted to do as governor on that issue, or were there things undone? >> california has taken more intelligent action on climate change than any state or province in the western hemihere, and more than almost all jurisdictions in the whole world. so we've done a lot. is it enough to stop climate ha e? no. the world has to do much more, much quier, and so does california. but that stepping it up requires public support. and as w see with macron, riots in the streets becse of a carbon tax. we've seen in washington a carbon tax was handley defeated. we're on the road to we're going to get more drought, more fires, more destruction, and we better start krolling it. >> you are california's younger
governca, and you're fornia's oldest governor. i think there were 30 years between. >> we did have some ynger governors in the 19th century. but in the 20th century, i'm thn youngest the oldest. oldest of all time. >> yeah. and so you had a lot of experiees in your life in between those two terms. >> yeah. >> i won't go through them all, but ther were publicoffices you held. you did the buddhist thing, the zemo stery. how do you think all those things in between the two times you were governor made you g different vernor the second time? >> well, we are different. you know, as you age, you get new -- things look back. you look back on your life, and you learn things hopefully. i've lened to work very closely with the legislature. but, again, it's easier to work with them when i'm older than most of them and i have more experience. e first time around, i was younger, and i had less what ence, and a lot of they were doing was all new to me whereas now, most of whatoi we're is familiar to me
and new to them. so that's allowed a more balanced relationship, which i don't think i've taken advantagu of i've fully embraced to make a cooperativepa tnership. >> so january 7th, you and your wife, ann, are going to leave. you're going to g to caloosa county, which is a much quiet existence than you've been used to. what are you going miss? >> i'm not sure. when i left the last time, i didn't miss too much. when i left, i don't think i looked back, what was deukmejian doing or whatas the legislature doing? you go on about your life. on january 24th, i'l be in washington to unveil the clock that is put out atomic scientists and they will tell us how close t midnight are we on the doomsday clock, whichhoeans close are we to the end of the world. that's important. that's important work to try to wake people up.i hope to meet with members of the senate andhe housend get
a greater awareness that we've got to deal withea the nu threat. and then i'm also going to be working on climate issues and then probably prison reform and sentencing. so just those teehings alone, not to mention my oli trees and making sure that the emitters aren't plugged up or eaten by squirrels.lo i've got a to do. >> governor brown, thank you so much. we hope you have a long retirement, long next chapter is probably a better way to s it. >> good. i don't think of retirement. i think of taking off in a new direction. now a look back at 2018. politics, california played a key role in the midterm elections blue wave. democrats won congressional seats long held by republicans in central and southern california. at the state capitol, the me to movemend sexual harassment allegations forced lawmakers to resign. meanwhile, regees became the focus of a bitter political debate as the trump administration separated
families and civil rights advocates went to court. and in the tech industry, a moment of reckoning amid rising anger over how companies like google, and twitter handle user data and fail to guard consumer privacy. here now with a-e ye review of these and other top stories are three kqed eporters. om our politics and government desk, marisa lagos, o-host of the california report billy d jamali, silicon valley bureau chief, tanya moosly. i bigear for immigration. just today the u.s. supreme court ruled that the trump in atration's ban on asylum for any immigrants who cross the u.s.-mexico boriler gally, they ruled against it. marisa, what happen now, especially since the trump administration announced this week that immigrants seeking asylum would have to wait in mexico for their court ruling? >> well, i think like everything the last pened ov two years, there's more confusion in some areas. it may clarifies a little bit.
this was basically the trump administration attempting to kind of rewritet laws t congress had written pretty clearly, which says no matter how you cross the border, whether it's at a port of entry or illeylly, you apply for asylum. the court upheld a lower court's decision saying that codress reall spell that out in the statute. interestingly john roberts, the chief justice, did side with the more liberal justices. i think now you're going to see probably even more people applying for asylum, maybe eople who had been a little deterred by some of this back and forth. but really what i think the mexican govnment is figuring out what the new policy means in terms of people waiting in line in mexico. and i think really for everyone it's ju been --ou know, so many changes so quickly. i mean lily, you've been down there. >> i thinot there's a of frustration frankly on the mexican sid of the border, both probably with refugees or re migrants who waiting to come in, but also from the
governmei. i spoke someone at the mexican embassy yesterday after that decision to keep folks on the mexican side while they go through the asylum process. it's been report as a deal that the u.s. and mexico struck, but when i spoke to them, it was quite clear they were told by the trumpministration at 8:00 yesterday morning that this was happening. it was not a deal thatas hatched by both sides from what i can tell. >> we've seen this before, right? i mean the travel ban announced with very little notice. other immigrationlicies announced with very little notice. for immigrants, how confusing is this? you know, court ruling afr courtruling, policy after policy. >> well, i don't think they are ing every t for tat thing that happens on this issue, on an issue that's very important to them. they're not checking twitter every second the way a lot of reporters who follow this beat closely are. and so i think what we're seeint y are still going to the
border, and there are actually lawyers in some cases trying to receive theme anding them, don't leave. you know, if you're going border where we're hearing in otay mesa, for example, that they're bein rerouted to another border entry in san diego at san ysidro. those lawyers are there to receive them ando sayt go anywhere. so, you know, there is some support for them in that regard, but there's really aege of news, and i think the most that they can do is just understand at this is really an asylum policy that is under assault by the trump i think most of them get that. >> also under assault are not only pele currently seeking asylum but the trump administration now is trying to also target vtnamese refugees for deportation, people who have been here for decades in the silicon valley, where your base of coverage is. how is that playing out? >> it's a huge issue. we talk about silicon alley, san jose proper, and santa clara
county, we're talking nearly 200,000 residents who live there who are vietnamese, and we're talking aboutenerations of folks. the migration started happening in the '70s, and the ' this is a huge community, and they're really watching it very closly and very concern about the impact overall. >> i think politically, i remember when this broke out, i thoit was such a bizarre move for the trump administration to make because incalifornia at least, first generation vietnamese have been a very loyal f voting bloc republicans historically. >> especially in orange county. >> where we just saw all of the congressional republicans lose. and so it just seems -- and you have already seen generational changes. i think kids of those immigrants are more likely to be independent or democratic anyway, but i do think this is just one of those thgs where you're going, okay, you're attacking everybody including people that are part of your base, a how is that going to play out in 2020? i mean it seems to me like it cou be a bad miscalculation. >> all right. a bit of a head scratcher there let's taout tech as well,
tanya. >> what a year. >> what a year for a lot of companies, but particularly for facebook and its users. what are we learning now about which companies facebook shared data with, and how many users were affected? "the new york times" has been doing some amazing investigations of this. >> that's right. we learn about new companies every single day, it seems. counted from february to today, we've had 21 scandals over the cose of this time. >> involving facebook? >> involving facebook and user data. and so right now we're just learning more and more about the policies, the way facebook s. wo i think that it was a huge people whoor regular aren't reporters to actually learn the inner workings of acebook and how facebook works, that they actually receive money through advertising and through our data and through metadata. so that's something that many people are now learning, and we're learning about more and more companies. you talked about "the new york times" and their investigation, their reporting. we're now learning that many
companies including apple and spotify and netflix. >> microsoft, amazon. >>hat's right. ey received access to our data, and they were actually in proxy. so it's a very confusing type of way that they worked, but essentially they were working understand facebook's arm, ser they thought of as part of facebook when they received our data. >> earlier this year, the state legislature did pass a privacy la for california becausee fcc has really refused to take this up in the way that some folks w ild like them to terms of protecting consumers. and that is going i into effe january. the attorney general is going to be holding these hearings around yhe state to to get consumer input on what they think those privacy regulations should look like. so i would expect to see more on his from the california legislature next year because i think that there's going to be some problems with that law they're going to have to work out. >> they are. they'll be spending the ne year working that out. it will look very different from what became an act inaugust. >> what about at the federal level,bethough,use we have
now a number of congressional lawmakers who are very concerne i mean senator richard blumenthal of connecticut ompared facebook's data privacy problems to the bp oil spill. he said it's ongoing, uncontained a toxic. we will be paying the price for decades. how likely aree going toee tighter regulation of tech companies in 2019? >> that's the big que ion, but there are several open investigations on the federal level that we'll be following into january and uary. so we'll see where this shakes out. but i think that weill see more push for there to be regulations over time. >> and we had the other major story this year. it's so horrible, the camp fire. it was just so much devastation. the deadliest and mostst ctive wildfire in california history. lily, how are the survivors of this fire coping? >> it's been just over a month now since that fireig ted, and i think that, you know, emergency mode is now people have caught their breath, and you see a lot of people ine
butte county complex doing things like trying to get their properties reassessed, taking care of their propert taxes and trying to get them lowered. and, you know, that all -- all along, they were also trying to take c of their personal lives. a lot of them have kids, and they're trying to make se theirids are okay and understanding what is going on. so i think it's really that moment where we're kind of going to see what this community looks like. are people going to stay? i know a lot of people already thought about leaving or have. and so i think what happens in the comi weeks and certainly in the first part of this year is really going to dictate how this story looks, you know, two, three years from now, ten years from now. are people going to bail on paradise, on butte county, or are they going to plant roots again andake it rk? >> and what can we expect to see from mayor elect gavin newsom on is issue and from pg&e, that's under a lot of investigation? >> that is the $15 billion
question, i think. i think this is an issue that the new governor is going to have to tackle. i've heard speculation he could call a special session about living with fire because i think that's something california has to grapple with, with climate change, with drought, with thec munities that do butt up against these rural areas. thissn't going ay. but i don't think it's the first thing that newsom wanted to ndo think he's going to be under a microscope when it comes to his relationship with pg&e which is headquartered in san francisco. the executives thge have a l relationship with him. >> i made a mistake earlier. i referred to him as mayor elect. i do now he was mayor of san francisco. i do now that he is now going to be our governor. >> i was just going to add to that, though, it's crises that like these can really make break a politician. and gavin newsom, i think, you know, he has a lot of things would like to be his signature
issue. climate change of course wa big one for his predecessor. i was thinking perhaps migration might be one for gavin newsom. >> he's been stressing early childhood edullation as >> health care, yeah. >> my point is this might be t thing that defines how we view him when the history books are written. >> i agree. it's a challenge because there are so many different groups that you are going to have to be sort of wading between when it comes to the surance dustry, the homeowners, the local governments. and i think it's going to take a lot of leadership to step back and talk about ways that the state can really step in and make sure that we're not building -- sort of making the same mistake over and over again. i think th 's a really tough one, maybe tougher than the utility question because we like local control in >>california. let's talk quickly about the midterm election because we had the blue wave. as part of, th we also had a pink wave. how has that affected california? >> we have now three of the seven constitutionalst offices,
tewide offices held by women. we have, i think, anin uptic women in the legislature. still not complete sort of parity between men and women. i think there l a of excitement, and i think you're going to see some of that me too legislation that came o last year continued purpose. we do have a leader of thete ste seho is a woman and gavin newsom's chief of staff as well. >> the pink wave also kind of extended to tech, right? we hadle the go walkout on sexual misconduct concerns. >> that's right. it really showed for the community at large and for women that they have the power. they made google essentially undo for arbitration for women in sexual harassment cases. so it shows that when communities galvanize, when they get together emploes, 20,000 walked out, they can force change. >> they made a statement. we sort ofur have own little pink wave here with our all women panel. thank you all. >> thank you. let's switch gears to
something lighter. paula poundstone is a star panelist on thepr quiz show, wait, wait, don't tell me, where she's known for her off the cuff humor. last year she published another book, the totally unscientific study of the search for human happiness. she's had h own t variety show and she's on her second podcast called nobody listens to paula poundstone. she refined her stand-up heren san francisco at tiny clubs in the 1980s. paula join us now reflect on her career and wrap up a wild year. paula, nice to have youhere. >>hanks so much for having me. it's nice to be here. >> welcome back to san francisco. in cold, raw, san francisco. i've been shaivering since i've been here. >> you pretty much started your. career h how does the city seem to you coming back? >> you know what everybody tells me is it's really expensive to live here now. >> oh, yeah. >> which -- that'srobably not a good idea on the part of -- i was justaying to
somebody today, you know, the reason we could have such a creative, energetic stand-up comedy scene with a lot of people coming too town just learn to do this job was because you celd live cheaply. >> yeah. well, not anymore. >> not anymore. but i mean it's going to hurt the arts a a certain point even though i'm sure there will be a lot of good -- ia bet you a lot of stores that sell high-end kitchen things. do they have that? >> we have stores that sell all kinds -e hi things, not just kitchenthings. >> i think i owned one sauce pan when i lived here. but i picture itngow b a place where everyone has a kitchen just full of tngs tha you use just for one specific task in the kitchen. are you acook? >> no, but i have a kitchen full of things for one specifictask. >> yeah. >> you know, i was looking back at some of your old performances
here in san francisco, and you were here in the heyday of comeay in the area. >> it was fun. >> what are some of your fondest memories from that time? >> there was a bunch of us that went from club to clubn on o mike nights together because nobody -- only one or two people had cars. and on a monday night, you coul do three open mike nights as a alcall. there's a placeed the holy city zoo back there. there was the othercafe, and there -- well, the punchline. the punchline is still there, isn't it? d there's another place called cobb's pub. >> robin williams becam your friend during that time. >> yeah. robin was from here. he wasn'the same graduating class of stand-up comic that i was. he was already abig, huge star by the time that i showed up. but he was very -- what's the word -- paternal, i think, to lots of comics. he was a very generous man.
>> fast forward, you're now on the npr news quiz prgram, wait, wait, don't tell me. very popular. how do you prepare for something like that?ll do they tou the topics in advance? >> no. we knowu thetions they're going to -- it's a weekly news quiz show, so we know the eestions are going to about the week's news. i use a fairly unusual and wasteful method, and not really successful method of preparing for the show. i hold the record for losses on wait, wait, don't tell me. and people ask me all the time, they go -- people ask me if i purposely throw the matches. and the answer to that is no. i'm tryi >> do you think the other contestants cheat? >> yes. no one ever talks about the doping, but it's there. yeah, m tryi really hard to win. i read the -- or i skim anyway a week's worth of -- and don't tell this to anybody, but new yorkposts. i get "the new york post."
here's why i get it. so it has the major news to es, just not well told, and it also has news of the weird. that's whatills you on wait, wait, don't tell me is the news of the weird, you know. >> there's a lot ofwe dness, even stuff that's not meant to be weird. talk about the government shutdown that was and wasn't but now may be again. what do you think about that? >>t's rrifying. the whole thing is horrifying. every day i try t figure out why? how did we get here? what happened? as near as can tell, electing srump is to americans what beaching themselis to whales. scientists don't understand it. there apears to be -- the only difference is we don't have es another speto shove us back in the water. >> you're changing with the times. yew nowdoingpodcasts. there are a lot of podcasts out there. >> there are tons ofpodcast. >> how challenging is it to come up with something different? >> well, it the not easy at all
because at this point, the thingshat human beings have in common are that we breathe oxygen, we don't eat our young, and we have a podcait. sois very difficult to sort of stand out in that crowd. but nobody listens to paula poundstone, it's just plain fun. that's what it. it's me and my partner adam, and we call it a comedy advice podcast. its number one job is to be funny, but wering on people that are experts in different topics, and topics that are -- we had a ladyom talk about house mold. frankly it was very helpful. so even if yougo away and you didn't find it hysterically funny, which i hope that you y will, b at least come away with some good solid information about house mod. we tryo make sure we try to at least deliver information. >> paula poundstone, thanks for being with us. i know you're back in the bay area on december 31styo. 'll be performing at 8:00 p.m. at the sydney goldstein theater. >> newyear's at the sidney
goldstein. >>hat better way t spend new year's eve? >> it's the best way. it's the healthiest thing in th orld. laughing out the old year and laughing in the new year is a great thing to do. >> paula poundstone, nice to have you with us. >> thanks for having me. that will do it for us. tune in next week for our show about the arts in the bay area. then our special stand up san quentin the followingek woo. e'll return on january 11th with our regulprogram. you can find more of our coverage at kqed.org/newsroom. i'm thuy vu. have a wonderful holiday season, andoihank you forng us. ♪
robert: a breach in the cabinet and congress on the brink. i'm robert costa. welcome to "washington week." >> eve nation has the right but the absolute duty to protect its borders and its citizens. without borders, we have the reign of chaos, crime, cartels. robert: president trump digs in on his request for billions for a border wall. rattling capitol hill and the markets. and he announces u.s. troops will leave syria. >> we've been fighting for a long time in syria. i've been president for almost two years. and we've really only stepped it up. and we have won against isis. robert: but leadingpuepublicans back. >> to say they're defeat is an