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tv   KQED Newsroom  PBS  March 15, 2019 7:00pm-7:30pm PDT

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tonight, governor newsome's reprieve for death row inmates sparks debate and a college admission scandal rocks the higher education landscape. san francio's new public defenders shares his goals and priorities for the job. plus, a new book offers a chilling look at how tech companies are stripping the details of our lives not only for profit but for control over our behavior. hello and welcome. we begin with two major stories this week. on wednesday, governor newsome halting order execution for as long as he is in office. california currently has more than 700 inmates on death row. more than any otherstate. go cernor says h not sign off an executing hundreds of human beings knowing there mght
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innocent people among them. the decision won praise from activists but critics call the move an abuse of power. meanwhile, in other major developments this week, a number of californians including actresses and prominent business figures areo among the than 40 people charged in a widespread college admission scam. parents alrgedly bed athletic coaches or paid people to cheat on college entranceex s to get the kids into top schools. joining us to discuss the stories are scott schaeffer, senior editor of california politics and government. republican political consult nt shawnlsh of wilson walsh consulting and jill tucker,"s francisco chronicle" education reporter. welcome to you all. >> thank you. >> jill, the cnlege admiss scandal has roots here in northern california. the bribes, many were funneled through a foundation based in sacramento. can you tell us what happened with the $20 million that that foundation took in?
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where did it go? >> $25 million. it not toward nonprofit good will and programs for underprivileged kids as thet nonproclaimed. it actually went to funnel to coaches andop other p at universities to helpealthy and actresses, doctors, ceos,ret thids into the college of thir choice. you looked through the tax documents. oneth said made donations to friends of cambodia. >> yes. and we never heard of these eople. we certainly have never gotten a dime. so far, we haven't identified really any of the money funneling toward charitable cau causes or helping disadvantaged youth. it seems that all that money helpedyo advantagedth and their parents and the people like mr. sier who was arrested and pleaded
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>> can we expect to see more? >> i think it's the tip of the iceberg. i think you'll seeore sues. this is just around mr. singer. the professiona college admittance business is big bucks. people are terrified. ucla had 130,000 applicants for 14,000 slots. they had 65,000 applicants for l 4,000 s. parents are freaking out. our kids right now are waiting for letters in the mail right now. >> you both have seniors. >> yes. and it's a war. so when you hear a kid is not getting into cal ucla with a 4.0, they apply to 20 skills. it is a self whipping up issue. this is why it touched on llions of americans. >> you say it's a war. a lot of't parents dave any artillery to fight that war, right? tha srt paragrais part of the i >> in a way, it is creating a level of parents who do have means who hire professionalsat
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guaranteis >> and there already some political fallout from this, right, scott? senator ron widen on the finance committee said he will ppose federal legislation to end tax breaks for college donations both before and while the dono's child is enrolled. how else might this play out politically? especially in the presidential election? >> absolutely. i think you're already seeing the democratic party going to the left on a lot of income and equality issues. i think this is going to give encouragement to people like
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elizabeth warren and bernie sander and camilla harris to talk about increasing taxes on corporates, on wealthy individuals. it's going to really -- think people will see this issue of inequality in a different w s. this ih an easy to understand issue. >> itffects so many people, too. >> so offensive. in to, you know, everyone. you have to t too, is thisre ly about the kids sore thor is s about the parents? do they have to the yale sticker on the car? do they have to say where their kids go to school? a lot of the kids didn't know this was on there. >> they better ho they didn't know. >> well, yeah. what does it say about us as a society, right? in terms of the inequities that exist out there. this is something as you pointen out the p have money to pay, it further perpetuates the
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inequities. do we go about resolving. there are $100 mill donation from tech ceos and the universities are turning them down on that. i think the billions airs that can buy a buading, i to buy a coach. so for a $500,000, i can get my kid in ucl -- or ucla or usc as op10sed to million. so in a way it's a bargain. where there is a will, there is a way. >> i think the large donations are still getting kids into college. >> how do youylevel the p field? >> i think there are a lot of programs out there for these kids. i talked to a woman today. she applied to 20 -- more than 20 schools. she started prepping for the s.a.t. when she was a freshman through a nonprofit program. she has worked so h,rd aou know, to get in with, you know, lowme in family, public
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school. and she wasep d offend bid this. but she is getting offers into college because she worked really, really hard and supported by these programs and by these f in the community that's are working with these students to get them in. >> i think it's ironic. the outside influence of sports and athletics. these were not top tier sports. we're talking about the sailing clu although i play water polo. it's not a top tier sport, lacrosse. so that is one issue. also affirmative action. you know, i think there are a lot of families, kids where it's -- they're first in the family to go to school. from workingclass familie or people of color, immigrants. and they get to the schools and they feel like they don't belong because they didn't earn it. >> you know? >> it'so ironic. >> and it may not be the right fit for them. it's wha their parents wanted for them but maybe not the right fit for them. >> t there evidenceat attending the selective colleges can lead to salaries down the line or personal happiness?
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>> i thinkert ma a lot to somebody who comes from a working class family ths it dom the kids in these families. they already have a lot of advantages. you no he? i't sure what is the added value, you know, of going to a topnotch school. >> i think it's the connections. it's gtting hired. you know, if you're a yale graduate yushgs goi graduate, you're going to take a look at yale graduates coming up behind you. i think that networking does definitely help these young people. there are studies that show, for example, only a very small percentage of the top 100 u.s. companies r are by ceos that graduated from ivy league schools. >> i'll tell you. i worked in the reagan and bush white houses and e top echelons of government at least in the past. if you got go to yale, princeton, or harvard pedigree, you're ually an assistant secretary of state or defense.
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there is an advantage to those schools.ti >> in po and the supreme court. we've seen that. i have to move on to the death penalty now, scott. that is the other big story this week. despite the fact that california voters have repeatedly upheld the death nalty and in 2016 sped up execution, voted for that. so newsome promised to honor the will of the voters. what happened? >> well, i think obviously he feels deeply about this issue. he has had i think in his career we saw this with same-sex marbrage. heke the law essentially. got reeled in by the courts. i think for him, he was looking of the reality of within the next few months having to sign off on the lethal injection protocol. there were 25 people on death ls row whose appere exhausted. i think he just personally didn't want to do that. now he's not first politician to
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do something a little different than he said he would when he got into office. on the other hand this is never a top layer issue in the gubernatorial campaign. he has beenst aga capital punishment for a long time. it's not a shock, however if you're a crime victim family you're unhappy. >> i wonder if -- i wonder if if the fak if is aeprieve this is not permanent. the next goverr can take that away. does that give him coverage to say this is my -- during my term. i'm giving is reprieve. >> it could. the reality isle that thing cause of death on death row is old age. they're getting old. they're in their 60s and s a lot of them. yeah, it's hard to imagine given where the politics of cinifornia are that the next governor is going to be tougher on capital dnishment. he question might be on the 2020 ballot. there is already a move to do that. >> i want to get you in here. you were part of pete wilson's
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administration and crafting the death penalty policy during that time. what do you thin of the move? >> i think it sends a message that the executive ignores the law of the wiland. and i tell you, on this issue, the death penalty, i have found this to be probably the most dishonest public policy debate that happens from there are people that are heart felt and morally believe it is wrong on the death penaltyssue and will do anything to stop that. and so you've seen this time and time again in the state of
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california where, you know, the nine circuit judges passionate about this or advocates are passionate about this. theythwart it. the u.s. supreme court yelled back and said stop this. you're abusing the justice system. so every time it's been thwart and come back by the voters an done. this once again, d not only we have a repeal of the deatha penalty anpport of death >>nalty and people rejected the appeal. the trend line is clear. the support for capital punishment is going down for decades. >> as in the case of same-sex marriage situation. so that raises the question that sometimes maybe a public policy statement of thisnature, it takes a while for public opinion and the courts to catch up. because w saw same sex marriage eventually become the law of the ldnd. >> i wrgue from a public policy perspective. used vernor went out and selective facts. it costs billions of dollars to cases. death penalty yes, it does cost more. you think that people were
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putting death penalty issues on the daily basis. they're in the state california on annual basis, it's fluctuated over the past 20 00ars between people who committed murders every year to 1800. of those case it's been between 8 and20 that ha been given the death penalty. it is a very, very important topublic policy for prosecutors to use to generally clear -- >> he's not first governor issue a moratorium. there are other governors on the west coast. 18, 20 states banned capital punishment. >> i wonder if there is enough support for the death penalty to create a groundswell to recall? >> i don't know. >> we have to leave it there. jill tuck we are the "san francisco chronicle," scott schaeffer with the k community and also s wn walsh, thank you for being here. >> thank you. now to local politics on monday, san francisco mayor appointed someone to serve as an francisco next publ defender. he will replace hadachi who held he office since 2003 until his
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abrupt death last month at age 59. he haen with the public defender's office for 11 years and had been managing his felony division. in a statement, mayor reed praised him for his commitment to justice and equity and for continuing adachi's legacy. nice to you have here. >> thank you for having me. >> congratulations on yitr new pon. how are you feeling? >> it's a lot in a short amount of time. but the office has really been wonderful in their support of me and directioning and continuing his legacy and expandingf on it. a lote community have been really positive about this development. i'm excited to move in a new direction. >> and whatt was t new direction? what is the priorities? >> well, what is a new direction? jeff was someone who was always believed in a growth mindset. he always tried to really grow a tremendous depth with our office.
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the first thing i need to do is meet th all o the other units. i have been the fell ony manage. we have so many different units. there is a strong investigation andragal staff. there is a lot of information gathering andp ve each unit in the office to best serve the citizens of san francisco. >> and your predecessor was also work that went beyond thepublic defender's office. he was a advocate for justice reform and pension reform in san efrancisco. thre certain issues beyond the walls of the public defender's office that really speak to you,hat you plan to be a vocal advocate for? >> yes. there are maa a but just to go over a couple. increasing evidence that the brain is not fully developed until ages of 23 or 24 years old. yet, we're still treating youth as people who have fully formed brains. so expanding young adult areas where we can move young people into areas rath than er
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incaion, further rehabilitation if there was a crime committed and moving in a positive direction so people cnt move either the educational or job force areas withou convictions on their records. >> and you also founding member of e group public defender's for racial justice. i imagine what you're talking out ties into that well. this is the group that advocates for selecting juries that are mo representative of the communities that they come from. that they're chosenfrom. how does the issue of race play out today when you're defending your cli>>ts? t plays out in so many ways. to give you a quick example, there is a trial that i was doing and the juror said, listen, i don't want to on this jury. it doesn't look fair to this ry. you're client is a young african young man from the bay view and there is no one who looks like him on this jury. there isit no ufrom the bay view on this jury. i don't see how we can give this young man a fair trial in the
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who audience started clappi in that moment. i think the residents of san francisco are e aw need greater vie ver greater diversity on the injuriejuries reflects our community. >> so what are some of the ways you go about accomplishing that? >> the first thingct is col the dat yachlt who a. we're going to ask the jury commissioner and an initiative sotewide that is pendingou to have jury commissioners collect the data. once they collect the data, then we can do more to see how we can juries. the. >> i want to ask you about something else as wels your predec had a tense relationship with the san francisco police department. thtse have been leaked rep about his death. this week the san francisco police officers union cut ties with the former presintfter he made inflamatory remarks about oadachi's death his facebook site. are you concerned about that adversarial relatiodhip? how woou go about
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addressing it? >> the adversarial relationship is something that the american legal system is founded on. you want a pblic defender's office and defenders who are confident and comfortable through vigorous cross-examination of police officers. >> this goes just beyond the standard relationship rooted in how our legal syste is structured, right? it seems very personal. how would you go about fixing hat andending fences? >> i just actually met with chief scott. i saw him onoc two sions. he is looking forward to sitting down. i hope to continue conversations with him. but at the same time,ie c scott and, you know, the residents of san francisco are interested inreform. it's important to collect data on redisproportionate s for african-americans, for example, in the community and see if we can actually do some changes that will actually makere policg air for the residents of san francisco. >> you're the son of immigrants from india. what role does that play and how you approach your legal work? >> when you look at theer place
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my parents come from, it's a village in south india which is pretty poor farming community. and my father wasble to because there were a couple people in that community who believed in him, really achieve heights in education. i think that's one of the same things we should be trying to do your our clients to really look at what their potential is. and secondly, some of the disparities that we have within san francisco, we hav two san franciscos sometimes when you look at the conditions and some of the housing projects and we have the skyrocketing real estate wealth in the city. and that -- what we have internally in the cit plays out globally when you look at some comparison to the united states. >> that formed your work in that way. >> the new public defenr in san francisco, we wish you all best in your new job. thank you. >> thanks for having me. o> we turn our attention to a bold viewf how tech companies are trying to control every
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aspect of our lives for profit from smart watches to social media posts to even the words wk spt home, tech companies are capturing all that data and analyzing, bundling it and reselling it. they're not minding the intimate details of our lives, they're trying to shape and control them. that is the contention in a new book "thee age of surveilla capitalism." and she joi us now the studio. nice to have you here. >> so glad to be here with you. >> you coined the term survelilance capi. can you explain to us what it is? >> yes.la survece capitalism birthed in the 21st century in the digital era. other areas of capitalism olved this way. they claim things that live outside the marketin dynamic, them into the marketplace to be able to be sold an purchased. so, for example, industrial capitalism took nature, brouhet nightarket dynamic and
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sold it as real estate, as land. >> how is this different from the normal free market capitalism that we have become accustom to? >> all right. so surveillanceal capsm took an unexpected and darker twist. it claims private human experience for the market dynamic. it ings it into the marketplace, anslates night behavioral data which are then sold in new kinds of b marketplaces iness customers who want to lay bets on what we will do in the fure. >> so in your book you cite the game pokemon go as an example of this. this will illustrate this. how did that modify our behavior? >> eventually surveillance capitalists unrstands the best data comes from intervening in our behavior and shaping and herding and tuning us torts the
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objectives. >> so pokemon go did that by saying if you go to these business establishments, can you see the characters there. ading people to businesses they may never have visited in the first place. >> that's right. it estabshed these futures markets in human behavior wi a whole range of service providers, restaurant, bars,la s to get your tires changed, whatever it may be. and these esablishments paid pokemon go for guaranteed foot fall. so just liken the online world, the advertisers would pay google or facebook for atick throughs, now we're out in the real world in our real lives where, of course, we will spend money >> in your book, it's nearly 700 pages long. you lay out the case in great detail. and very chilling detail. you compare this to elephant poaching. that is the tech cothanies in case are taking our raw human behavioral material and stripping that and then we're
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the left over charactarcasses. but companies like facebook wi say they't selling your personal information. is that just a matter of symantecs? >> yeah, or i woulda haveed it euphemism. you know, the idea that you disguise what you are really doing with clever language that leads you toake a difference conclusion. what is really happening here is we are themaource of raw rial. for surveillance capitalism and production processes and sales. and what they're selling is bets on our future behavior. >> so what do you think needs to happ to try to fix this situation? >> number one, change in public nion, a sea change which i believe is already under way. we need new law, ne regulations thatll specifically outlaw the unprecedented activities of surveillance number two, we need new forms of collective action. this can't be the burden of individuals. we need to come together,
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recognizing our shared interests to pressure democracy toake changes. number three, we have an opportunity for competitive solutions. the companies that decide to come into this space and offer us the digital, theeay want it empoweng, democratizing, they stand to have every single person on earth as customer. none of us want surveillance capitalism. >> i know a lot of people are worried about technology andet data and they buy something like alexa, the personal assistant for their homes. and they think they're okay with that because they like the convenience. so there seems to be this disconnect between what they say they're worried about and what they do. what would you say to em? >> scholars call this the privacy paradox. we say one thing and do another. but, in fact, what we understand is that when you actually reveal to people what is goingn behind the veil backstage, nobodyh wants anything to do w
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it. the problem today is that most of us can't participate effectively in our daily lives without moving through the digital medium and the supply chai that lead right into surveillance capitalism's factories. so surveillance capitalism has a lot of wealth. that is rected to engineering the systems to keep us in ignorance. ey're designed to be hidden. they're designed to be secret. so it's very hardor us to be aware even just a couple weeks ago pugh rearch has a story about facebook users who have no idea the way inhi facebook is categorizing them to feed them to advertisers. even today a people surprised and ignorant about what is going on.we the a lies not just in the individual's action. it's intolerable that we should be asked to give up the digital.
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it's utilities, it's conveniences, it's information for the sake of protecting ourselves from these pernicious activities. what we really want to do discover our shared interests. and begin to join together in theinds of political and social action that will ultimately make adifference, new law, new regulation. >> if this tide of surveillance capitalism is not changed, what do you fear will happen? >> what i fea will happen is an assault on democracy. the kind of future that we beng headoward is different from the future we want. first of all, instead of democracy, we have computationa. tru ip stead of society, we have population statistics. instead ofauuman nomy, we have people who are tuned and herded, rewarde andunished to move in certain ways toward the guaranteed outcomes tat the owners of these systems desire. and it is against the very
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duture of the free and autonomous indiv. >> the new book is "the age ofn surveil capitalism," thank you for being here. that will do it for us. for more of our coverage online, go to our thank you for watching.
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♪[music] >> can president trump and speaker pelosir hold t parties together? i'm robert costa. welcome to "washington week." >> congress has the freedom to pass this resolution. and i have the duty to veto it. >> president trump vetoes legislation to end the national emergency. 12 senate republicans break, joining democrats in delivering a bipartisan rebuke in declaring a national emergency tos access fu sets a dangerousew precedent. >> this is not about the president. but this law, mr. president, is wrong. is a rebellion brewing among republicans? plus -- >> i don't think we should impeach a president for political reasons a w i don't thin should not impeach a president for political reasons. but you have to be ironclad in

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