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tv   Book TV  CSPAN  February 27, 2010 7:00pm-8:30pm EST

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throughout history and how it led to the development of civilizations from europe to be back in the bank and industrial revolution. all it takes and prose bookstore in washington d.c. hosts host hosts the-hour and ten-minute event. [applause] >> thank you everybody for coming. i wrote this book because freshwater scarcity i think is the greatest crisis that most americans have ever heard of. why we haven't heard of it, there isn't yet an allegorical of water so that may be one of the reasons, but i wrote it because also, two thirds of this book as we just heard is a world history of water and that too had never really been done. ..
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>> we don't always think of them as inseparable but they certainly are in the production of oil and the use is that we make of
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water. also bound with food and climate change. hopefully we will get into that a little later. i have subtitled the book comment the epic struggle for wealth, power, and civilization" a bit of a nod to dm. [laughter] on that topic, water has been the accident of wealth and power and there has been rising in decline of states depending on how well they manage water resources. it is pretty common and i will outline that as they go forward. the essential thesis is many of the turning points of civilization thinking the rise of irrigation back in egypt and mesopotamia, or the industrial revolution which certainly got a great impetus from the steam
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engine from where water makes its appearance. and societies as well think of china with the grand canal as it rose in the mid evil point* to become one of the great civilizations of world history at that time. we also have our own era which we have the giant dams of the west are an enormous achievement but to provide the basis for the green revolution that certainly transform the middle of the world. but we will come back. also for the first time facing another turning point*. their current trajectory, we simply don't have enough water for this 6.5 billion of us on the planet today much less more than the 9 billion that will be coming. i say current trajectory because that is the way we're using the freshwater
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that exist today. certainly i will argue later that if we use the existing water in a more productive matter and perhaps i could be criticized for being optimistic, we could probably get by. but it would not be pretty. the ecosystems are in very bad shape and getting worse with the things we're doing to ourselves by pollution, overdrafting ground water that is beyond the range that it is refilling so we're actually consuming and many parts of our savings if you think water reserves as your savings you do not want to consume savings but we are doing that. ben franklin said when the well is dry we learned of the word of water. but their global will is starting to go dry and we're
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starting to learn that the hard way. one of the ways we see that is that the world is dividing between the haves and have-nots. you can see it in a variety of formats. one is the sanitary divide. they're 1 billion people on the planet that don't have access to enough clean drinking water and those of us have more than enough and it comes to our house and we don't have to carry it. there are 2.5 billion that don't have access to sanitation. i will jump ahead and say let's think of haiti today. it is in the headlines with the tragedy there. we are seeing all the ramifications of it but the health issues are terrible even in good times if it is a crisis it is a tragedy
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playing out across the world. there will be 3.6 billion people living in countries that cannot feed themselves and about 15 years' time probably in india with current trajectory. and you can imagine states fail if they were to estimate suffer great in fidelity's and political international relationships to go forward. when i finally put two and two together and thought it was time to do a good book it was the bill clinton moment. it is the economy stupid. you look at the headlines and you begin to see what that lands in mind that water is pretty much are
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rare. even today i am not sure the younger people in the audience know how far jessica biel is on mount kilimanjaro. there is another girl rolling across that the nation also met damon of for the cause of those who do not have access to drinking water and that number does not seem to go down. in our own country, just a few weeks ago with the environmental protection agency dropped the ball on enforcing the safe clean water drinking act one of the great achievements. 40% of our water is contaminated. 20 million people are getting sick in this country talking about health care costs alone, that is a good place to start.
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deforestation is one of the great effects with a watcher related defect. people have chopped down trees or ever civilizations have started. he is a case where only 2% of bay famously forested land when christopher columbus landed talked about the towering dense forest. for a variety of reasons there is only 2 percent left. what does that mean? with deforestation on a hill in vermin like that when it rains or storms the water comes down in torrents. it has created mudslides. a lot of people living in that with access. it pulled its industries water infrastructure it
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clogs up the streams and lakes and it takes a sewage and mixes and and and people get sick. it does not do any good or refill ground water systems but the ground is too hard. these are terrible problems. which brings me to copenhagen another topic in the news lately. for some reason, our experts in washington and national security implications of climate change but when you talk to the folks they know quite connect the dots with water and climate change. it is a little incomprehensible because almost all of climate change defect come through water. the extreme precipitation events with more storms and
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flooding are obvious. also the greater e fact of the glacier melts until a few years ago as half a invisibly too most people because it was so high yet but across the mountain range where the temperatures are warmer and rising faster than at the lower altitudes, we are losing many glaciers. that is the source of the river and that is a source of our water that we use for everything. food, industry, a drinking water, and other sources as well. some of the solutions to climate change to make the energy connection with carbons sequestration it will be hard to use that in places i have seen one study
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that said 45 were 90% more from conventional oil production. how i would like to turn to the national security issues to make one or two examples in point* 21 in the news. pakistan. a very important country we are fighting a war in afghanistan, but many believe the key objectives is to keep pakistan stable. glacier melts is a major problem in the river that is the lifeblood of that country and pakistan. it will lose one-third of its water approximately in the coming years at the same time the population is increasing 30%. underlying many of the problems, not surprisingly is population growth that is putting stress on the
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sustainability of many resources with water being critical. pakistan is a nuclear arms day, the taliban is seeking at 10 i think it is a national security nightmare for that country. especially in april when the taliban broke out of the northwest territories and came within 25 miles of the dam lead is the tour by lead dm that controls irrigation and hydropower on a vast scale. of perhaps if you lead to all of the dams on the colorado river what it would mean to the southwest that is how important that tours blood diem is to pakistan but just in the last couple months the united states committed 7.5 billion to pakistan approximately half of that and the most urgent
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portion is all on what to related projects because pakistan is really in a race against its own population that is one example. also yemen you can see security and water issues there as well. but i will mention china because it is the great juggernaut of the world at the moment when fifth of the amount of water we do on a per capita basis. only it has terrible pollution problems and a lot of environmental problems but water is among the most serious. i would go so far to say it is the achilles' heel at the current time for the nation. massive water projects are going on to move water from the south to the north and renew about the giant dams they are building on the
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river in the tibetan plateau which is the source of many of the great rivers of southeast asia presto development projects take place the facts will be felt downriver because because the have and have not divide is the difference between upriver and downriver states. another downriver state is turkey which is the new water superpower controlling the headwaters of the tigris and euphrates and therefore the outcome or how well syria or iraq will develop will depend very much and how much that can she decides to slow down. these are new geopolitical realities. fear not unmanageable but could lead to benefits but they bore a new reality we have to adjust to. i will also say i want to go
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forth a little bit but in our own country we have a number of water conflicts of course, and always have had but they are growing more frequent and perhaps a little more severe. if we just think of georgia and not too long ago tried to move its border to the tennessee river so it could get more water from that state. that did not fly. the great lakes manage to do a very interesting thing because they wanted to protect their ecosystem and many of the conflicting parties did come together to do that but what galvanized is that we were afraid other regions would get their water like texas that has their eye on everybody's water. they managed somehow to get congress to pass the act that affirms that great
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lakes compaq that says none of the water in the great lakes region will be allowed to be exported outside of the watershed. we will see what the supreme court has to say about a but that is an interesting development. i promised a little history and i read like to do that before i turn back to what i think are some of the opportunities for the united states. many of you eyesight is already the grand canal but i would like to go further. this book also covers the rise of the roman empire for example, on the mediterranean but also built the vast aqueducts which brought fresh clean water not just to the city that due to an enormous size and made urban is setian possible we improved on that after a long hiatus in the
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19th century with the revolution that started when we were polluting ourselves of the industrial waste of the initial burst of the industrial revolution and created the great snake of london which i will be happy to tell you about. but that thames smell awfully bad and scare the pants off of people they would get sick because they thought it was spread and then we got action from the parliament that led to a whole series of virtuous circles that spread around the world but also the voyages of the discovery and europe and how those were transforming the world politics. and another point* that is made in this book is the observation that came out that i notice when societies manage to marriage diverse hydrological regions of
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there nation's there seems to be associated with growth spurts i allude to the great can now that brings the north and southern regions vastly different being a rice growing monsoon environment and the north being very water pour but soil rich where chinese civilization started and the place where the invaders came from the north. in europe itself it rose first in the southern tier but then it came later on something simple up while that could overturn heavy soil then using rivers for transport and then see shores and finally the two came together through the sea trade and that series of innovation is finally what triggered the voyages of discovery. of like to talk about our
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own nation because we know our history best but think of the united states this way. we really are a country of three diverse ideologic regions we have a rainy temperate eastern half with navigable rivers and pretty good for water power as well. they flow pretty fast. we have seascapes that are very large on the atlantic and pacific. and of course, we have a very point* region and the west and if you think about how the eastern portion of our country developed, first-come even the revolution itself we were fortunate in the age of sail is when we decided to have our revolution and that
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meant the british had to bring over every bullet and gunned all across the expanse of the ocean. and about 40 years after that when the steamboat's had been invented, they were already able to sail up river as they did into burma and china but they could not do that when they were trying to control our country this salable it still look to domingo so far west before they could turn around so there were in limitations how far they could penetrate inland. the three great battles of the revolution were watcher related the battle of saratoga that turned a lot on control of the hudson river thinking of crossing said delaware that george
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washington did and yorktown. but let's go back to the east. how did we develop? by exploiting these rivers at first with the resources they had. we were able to harness the water power to produce i learned or mills or later the tremendous knows really the rivers the great break was the erie canal we forget george washington spent the years after the revolution before he became president trying to develop the potomac for the same purpose he also happen to be the largest landover and the ohio valley so he had a double interest but that yuri really opened up america to the mississippi valley and made it possible to begin to exploit that.
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i cite the numbers in the book but the amount of economic growth and transformation of america from that point* is enormous instead of northwest northwest -- north-south it was east west. we developed hydropower and the development of steel and the camels industry all that was developed in the east. the second seascape however came next and it paralleled the rise of the naval power. the great innovation there was the panama canal. again it brought that east and the west coast into great alignment and pivoted of whole world westward towards us.
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and then there was the west that this cannot develop like it did with the individual yeoman going forward it needs a socializing influence thinking that we change the nature of his independent spirit but he helped not. thought maybe it had been and still enough but things to teddy roosevelt and executed we build the enormous downs -- dims the most breakthrough was the hoover dam with hydropower and flood control and just as an aside like the story of than the ku the damage was and the men stand that produced i think at the time
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50% more electricity than we had in the entire country. what could we ever use this for? we cannot use all of this hydroelectricity and this is just a jobs program mr. roosevelt as saying it was the budget buster but he went ahead and he did have some discretionary many but six days before it open the japanese attacked us then suddenly all of that electricity was useful for smelting aluminum and became the basis of our counterattack to build the planes and hoping in the naval battle in the pacific.
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so there are good use is the third good. where we stand as the country as well in the past we had great technologies created more supply and nature that will not have been in the short run. but it has drawbacks too not be able to serve that function. there is hope with a genetically modified food that uses less water to grow. that may be a savior technology. but not on the horizon for colleges have to make do with the existing water the we have got. that is a problem some have
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monumental challenges some have more modest because the united states really could be equivalent of the many saudi arabia for water for the water thirsty world producing the water intensive goods including food and industrial goods that we use. that the world will not be able to produce itself in these regions. it is called virtual water is the term that is used. watcher is very heavy and weighs 20% more than oil. and you need a lot of it to produce just a little. is a very energy intensive i
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have been arguing that really what we need are two basic pretty simple principles. they're hard to implement the simple and principal. first we should deregulate the politically subsidized sectors of our water economy so they have to compete on the even playing field with all of the users of water on the supply side. free bear market competition i think that would lead to a more efficient allocation of water and i think would spur a lot of innovation. that is not enough by itself because we should even things out on the other side on the pollution side with the golden rule you return water to the ecosystem in the same condition that you check it out. if the guy downstream gets the same use of it that you
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had. the same fair use but obviously in our country there has already been there the remarkable productivity gains in water. since the clean water act came into play but that only applies to certain sectors, the energy producing thermoelectric plants for example, with big water withdrawal they withdraw a lot and they have to return the water in pretty much the same condition they are supposed to withdraw it. that led to enormous innovations to use less of it. surprise and cities are recycling water in your state is using the ecosystem itself for it has purchased the land as a natural filtration process so by the time it gets into the reservoir has been cleansed by nature. these are important and interesting developments.
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the most of our economy is still not subject to the general rules primarily agribusiness and i think it is high time we start to move in that direction and we have some choices to just slim down and deal with it as we are like in california. moving forward little by little and just getting by. on the other hand, we could do what israel and australia are already doing and go further to extract toward the guidelines i was describing here. they are using water fabulously more productively they are still not all the way there yet. but if we should do so i think we would see enormous growth in our country because there would be more water for the people who are squeezed right now. think of california.
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they have a very vibrant economy is water intensive. semiconductors are extremely water intensive and there are limitations on setting up shop out there because of competition. icing key would see our energy field we have limitations on the amount of thermoelectric plants have limitations on the amount of power or the number of plants they can build because they take water out of the river and they do put it back the amount that is taken out still leaves them that short period of time sometimes not enough to build new plants. you would begin to see in a number of ways the benefits of water to kick start our growth in this country. it would be the birth of the green capitalism our president has spoken about
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and a gradient to make water a centerpiece of that. it would also help us to meet the needs of the world because as i said before we are facing 3.5 billion people that will need to import food from someplace. there are a number of industrial goods as well so i would argue we can probably leverage our own diplomacy but do a good job for preserving world stability as well. finally on the note i would close that to i consider water to be something of a proxy for the great challenges we are facing in the 21st century, notably climate change but also energy and food as i have explained. if we can figure out how to solve the organizational problems of water, he will not only get the actual
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benefit to these other problems but also have organizational benefits of the process of learning how we manage a world that have problems that are no longer just within national borders? talking about haiti today, a development issues, the problem is you can easily build a water system someplace but the hard part is to maintain it. it is that the organization of bubble that things get complicated. and water might help to develop the mechanisms that might become useful that would become useful like climate change. would like to close on that note. again i would say using the al gore analogy. some politician will get clever and wake up and become the al gore of water
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but wake us up to the risks and opportunities but until then we have to do what ourselfs. [applause] i will thank you for your comments particularly on california and as a seven unnamed steven chu has warned by midcentury it may not have the water to run the agriculture that gross so much fresh produce and so many products from the central valley. that will be a for agriculture in california. it is done. but more my question is more concerned with reorganizing the system. i will take many people are aware but there are places you don't own the rain that falls on your roof. think it is invisible to people and i wonder how can that be reorganized? what can be done two make people more aware of that?
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>> the water rights question we regulate water at the state levels and quite differently in many places. western water rights are use it or lose it and also with rights on the east coast appealable long side the river you can use some of it. it will get to that question of reorganizing water rights to facilitate what we talked about treated water and australia and then they really did have to redefine what your rights that had been long held by private interest toward state interest. today they have a very vibrant water rates these
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rights and people will plant trees that help take salt of the ground that is put there because of the intensive irrigation. it is beginning to develop been very creative ways. it is called the invisible green hand we need to develop that mechanism that enlist the market forces in an ecosystem stabilizing manner. and i think the reorganization of rights will become a critical part of that down the road. >> i want you to follow up on something that you said concerning water systems. wants to build a water system, and now you have to maintain the water system. could you talk about the big chinese products in term of the overall sustainability and to maintain it is one
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thing to build large a stamp of hard to keep that project operating? >> of the chinese first of all, are the world's masterful of the civilization they have done more water projects than the rest of the world combined and even today they have almost half of the giant dams. what that does not mean they do it well but they are certainly pushing the line on all lot. there have been questions it will create earthquakes, there is sewage and other problems. i don't know. read about them in the book and talk about the fact that there are a number of environmental questions about the sustainability and there is another one in the works that might be bigger and the north that project is in the third tier of a water moving project sort of
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like california but a more massive scale and it acquires going up and down mountains and under rivers it is very questionable from a geologic call and sustainability standpoint. the other part of my question there is an enormous difference between what i was alluding to in the water systems in the very poor developing countries because they don't have the organization the governance does not exist and sometimes they don't buy yen the people who were the users are not in a position are not willing to support it because it is not really tailored to their interest. that is a huge obstacle to develop but i describe four
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regions of the world than the but going forward and one of them is the abject poor i don't know how many but two and a half billion better living under conditions were water could wipe them out in the day if there was a flood. we were to have 150 climate migrants in 10 or 15 years. this is when water is not always something for the good it can be quite hard and that is part of why civilizations have risen and declined did not have waterworks in order it is often associated with periods of decline when they do get it together they get the benefits. that is one portion of the rally have another that is more of the middle east region where there simply has not been enough water for a very long time maybe 30 or 40 years and they are growing more arid
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populations are growing explosively in the middle east will have half as much water each person as they have currently. there is a third category that china and india of the world. these are advanced countries with advanced technologies and part of the country's that is the borderline countries. pakistan and india will have enormous impact of the water crisis becomes manageable because it will become a food importer again. 1 billion and a half people china has imported food from time to time. it is not 100% clear if they can sustain as well given all of their broader problem certainly there industrial factories have shut down and big energy projects have shut down because of lack of
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water. if those countries get it right it will make the world situation a lot easier for everybody else but particularly those at the bottom who really live or sometimes have to much water. i call it water scarcity but me clear the worst is the unpredictability of the water and the storm sometimes it is too much. scarcity is perhaps not the best term to use for want of a better word and also the industrial democracies don't have a population pressures live in temperate zones and are well placed to get to the problem much more easily than everybody else. >> you spoke about taking water and returning at to where it came from and a condition that retek is there a problem taking waters to areas it has not
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been before like las vegas it is very air raid and instead of piggyback to the colorado is a problem that instead of going downstream and being absorbed by trees or forests that to it is evaporated? is there a wider problem of moving water to different regions upsetting the water cycle? >> good questions. first of all, in the book i do point* out we have used water for four reasons primarily we have used it for power generation and drinking both domestic uses and for economic reasons to produce food and industrial products and also for transport. there is now a fifth use that is the ecosystem themselves.
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this is the challenge we are facing how to leave enough so that ecosystems for all societies depend on survival in the end of it is you or me, we are both not in good shape. there has to be enough for that. that said, there is a strong debate whether you should transport water out of the region. 70 large rivers the delta is dried up and they don't give enough. there is a very unsatisfactory situation we're pumping groundwater beyond the replenishment rate in many parts of the country like the central valley of california or the southwest or the o blah, blah, blah in the united states but other parts of the world is worse.
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those are onetime uses and we are living beyond our means. but taking loss of a guess it has put in the best and most forward looking conservation features in the united states because it is so arid and also done one thing that is rather interesting to arrange to make a deal with california to help pay for the day sao sao -- desalinization plants to transport water is energy intensive and costly but if i can help you finances storage to make sure you can use the water there maybe i can take a low bid of your water out of the colorado out of lake mead that trading system makes sense and that is why is.
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we know the old saying by mark twain whiskey four drinking and watcher for fighting over and we know it is true in the environmental community people feel strongly about removing water from the ecosystems and people from stolid like herbert hoover the water that flows to the sea and used is wasted. i am somewhat neutral on the subject i don't take the strong position that strongly that you can never take the water act of ecosystems i think the world is what it is and we have to use it but we have to preserve ecosystems on the other hand. >> i am with water advocates here in town. great speech i look forward to reading the book i may not be a youngster but happy to report that the beautiful actress jessica biel has
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some did not kilimanjaro and i have what should that -- i have watched that very attentively but all of these are part of the solution to building awareness of global save water and sanitation in challenges. one quick question you mention the two 1/2 billion without sanitation and the lack of an allegory for that issue i think we did have one and that was senator paul simon and he was with us. kudos to senator durbin and corker now for picking up the ball to continue with his legacy the water for the world act and so on but there is no rock star later the north bigger to evade which shows a lack of political will not to solve the problem that helped to develop countries with these challenges that you write about.
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so what will it take to get that person or that organization how to resell the issue on capitol hill since we're all in washington? is 1 billion people without water not enough? clearly not. the world's global health challenge? the global argument? what will get people on the edge of their chair in this country? from the indian perspective the same question with respect to developing country and governments it is their responsibility of every dollar that goes to water and sanitation 70 percent comes from public sector finance in developed countries and what will it take to convince a head of state or head of government to say forget about the millennium development goals let's get to universal coverage for save sanitation
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for everybody in the country would arguments based on your right thing will be those defective? >> won't answer that last one first to do have a section where i ponder the question because i don't believe there are a few terrible leaders in the world to do not care but i do believe that most of them would even if they didn't care that much out of their own self-interest they would believe they need to get a safe drinking water for the population. it is the legitimacy of any government so i think the answer is talking to leaders and these are men and women who understand the dimensions and ranges of things but they also know what is politically very difficult for them to do. i come back to the organization there is the inability for many of the
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poorest countries fail lacks such basic and restructure it is hard to give aid any way that is sustainable when we talk about sustainability not just the environment but you have to have an organize a mechanism and i think the world bank has been trying and other groups to come up with ways to do that. that means trying to invest i was writing today about a program that was very successful started in brazil and urban areas where rather than try to have water delivered to the slums, it you deliver it in bulk to a neighborhood boy than the local leaders themselves organized the distribution and payments for the service
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you king gavel sell water coming in at a cheaper rate on that basis with the pipes later made in a simple way to be maintained by the local people would is doing before with local and common bond the government was trying to do with that so i do believe it will come from the bottom up from the small committees getting invested and committees have been invested a lot of the governing institutions in holland comes to mind. these institutions have existed traditionally but that will be the way that some of the problems will get addressed the second part of your question it is
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not just you know, guys who don't care but a lot of them are not an even if they were it is in their interest to solve that problem especially with the world watching so closely. there for the problem is elsewhere in the actual devil is in the details difficulty of getting it there. a short quick answer to what might get americans attention on water? national security the yemen attack. that is not a direct linkage to what -- water pakistan falling apart the becomes fractious and that begins to get the leadership attention maybe not to the point* we want to take on our own farm lobby but that is a stronger beast to contemplate.
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>> i rise primarily to congratulate you tupac so much news and insight into the 500 pages. i do have a question. samuel taylor, water water everywhere and it shrank water water everywhere not a drop to drink a rise to your challenge. tell us. >> but what power divines saul the river ride?
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de-sal at the current time is very energy intensive and and we use fossil fuel. so that by it self is the offset for the climate change. cost have come down enormously i did not discuss this but there is an enormous amount of private investment in filtration and others but intel whole technologies' it is like the whole movement is what i feel like and want to correct one thing in the introduction on a confidence game actually think the central bankers were heroic and less not all critical of that but nevertheless, sorry about that since we are recorded i wanted to get it clear.
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[laughter] de-sal is also still coming down quite eager mislead but not quite there yet. the other part of de-sal you can use it along the coast but if there is no post you have to transport and land and energy and costly and a very heavy but the big hope is solar or wind will come along and create a renewable source of energy 40 sell at least -- de-sal of it was more costly similar to other competitive water at least he would not have the negative effects of climate change and in certain parts if you need to drink it the saudis are trying very hard right now more did try to turn their oil into water and they gave up finally
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because they were minding the offer so badly to grow wheat now they're leasing land or farmland or cropland in the sudan or ethiopia or pakistan. this is the new world people will face. de-sal will get there but the amount of capacity is still small credit is not there. >> i first want to congratulate you on an extremely timely book but i worry because the last time we focused on central banking. [laughter] followed by a financial meltdown for i eight or eight for what may happen a few years hence but that being said in the early part of the book you talked about
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how an ancient civilization society was very much structured by water saying there were higher called the central authority and that sort of thing. i am wondering if you have any thoughts on how that might play out? a little credit -- prediction since we're facing a reorganization of a society round the new watcher crisis? >> good question. the reference you are making of course, is from the famous theory of hydraulic civilization and 18 the parallel the egyptian and mesopotamia in civilization even the chinese civilization. it arose similar geographic conditions in developed very authoritarian states and it was the central and what for the economy and political control and every civilization was a good case
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and the axis of power and wealth. i do argue in the book that we might see, let me raise the question, i don't know the answer, in the 20th century with the giant dams that require enormous mobilization of government power, the 20th century was an age where central government accrued enormous power. the dams or not the only feature or the old the form of wealth in society of course, to mobilize. but they contributed in that direction and i think it did. that was certainly the concern of frederick jackson turner and others in this century. on the other hand,, i would say on the other side of the book there are rainn fed civilizations were place -- rainn has been abundant with power being
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more local and those states tend to develop in europe and more democratic models with smaller groups can hold onto their economic interest and negotiate with one another. i see nothing close to the big dams in the visible future going forward. it does not seem the hydraulic model will pretend to and making authoritarian civilization rising again but we don't know what will come out of the conflicts resolutions that might arise as states begin to weekend and fade the populations and begin to fail. my last book i did predict we would have a financial crisis i am predicting again we have a water crisis. but i do think solutions
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will come. there is no one size fits all. sometimes, if you take africa it has hardly touched hydropower. people don't want to hear about dams but that might be quite useful in parts of the world that have yet to build some of them. on the other side there is a great movement toward smaller scale ecosystem oriented solutions that might be better alternatives to be looked at. but every region, every local region has different different, you know, this better than i do from your experience, it is it has it's own set of ideologic aspects and political features as well. i see the whole situation as rising out of the very messy trial and error figure it out as we go kind of way.
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this is one reason i encourage the market solutions because they have been very good in this uncertain in firing getting tailored situations. big projects are good when the technology is clear and on a mass scale but no see that is being on the horizon today. . .
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and start to update the rules as well for new chemicals and start to even expand the rules to cover everybody so that we can achieve it in our country. there places in the are places in the world of course where they can't. as for copenhagen, that is a very good question. most of the water people, i did not go to hope copenhagen, most
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people i talked to were quite upset that copenhagen did not really deal front and center with the water question. and for some reason, i don't know if they just are not connecting the dots or whether it was just the fact that you have mobs of people kind of disorganized in a semi- chaotic situation trying to figure out, produce something coherent that the issues like water didn't get on the table although if there is anybody here who was there maybe they can offer a more informed opinion than that, but it is i think a sad commentary on the state both of the climate change debate and the water awareness issue that really has not been coherently needed into that climate change debate. >> you have talked about one of us loose and are one possible part of the solution is the
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market-based solutions and another big piece that would seem that the water issue is not so much a supply issue but also connected a little bit with the climate change, the rising sea levels in the more intense storms you see in new orleans for example which really seemed to call for the much larger, moving the water and part of the failure in new orleans where we just didn't have levy sent pumps like in south florida or over in europe to move the water and how would you deal with that in a market system or would that be more of a larger command control corps of engineers type thing? >> that is a good question and i am not, i don't think there is only one answer to it. new york city, many of you don't know but if you read the book you will know, has been, for the last 50 years has been in a race with possible construction, deep underground destruction because they have read, they have had two distribution tunnels to
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chipping the water from new york that have been old and very leaky and actually they were afraid to turn them off that they were going to collapse so they have been trying to build a third water tunnel that will allow them to close up the first two and see what is going on and where the holes are in just to keep it clean and the rest. and, should that have, should one of those earlier tunnels have gone out before the completion of 20-- tunnel three which is getting close to completion, that part of, large portion of the city would become uninhabitable. i don't know how they would have gotten water to millions of people like that on a constant basis. it is mind-blowing. that is a government project and a multibillion, i forget the number but a hugely expensive and difficult construction and that is not a private solution. so the answer is that, and i
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will answer in another way but part of the answer is that some of these the things our government, still have the old-fashioned governments or government hiring contractors to do the job for them, but require some central authority to take big projects and then there are competition and water supply could be increased is what i am saying as well. it is not a one size, one size package. it has got to be a whole toolkit to deal with the problems as they come up, as they surface. to take the question of new orleans, of course, the army corps is, i mean governments also make big mistakes in adult want to say the army corps doesn't distinguish itself all that well in many cases, but there were alternatives and we have now realized we could have left many of those wetlands in
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place. wetlands are big sponges and when then they were floods, nature does have a way of preventing some of the worst destruction and trying to channel it into narrow channels proved to be not exactly behaving the way we wanted it to, couple of times i can think of than i think there is a lot of rethinking about whether those solutions are good or not or whether we should go back to look at the ecosystems and try to work more with them. i will just throw it in as an aside, there is mentioned in the book of sort of a two attitudes towards water, confusion and the dallas view and we are revisiting that. the confucian view being before so water to go where we wanted to go in the dallas view we are going to try to bend a little with the nature and go with the contours of the day and we are revisiting that in the debate today between what they call
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hard path and soft out solutions. >> high. just quickly i think one of the biggest bottled water contest the transportation cost that is so heavy but my question is, could you clarify two points. one you mentioned earlier, returning water in what condition from thermoelectric plants? how is that different from hydroelectric? and the second one is when you are talking about market solutions, could you clarify what that is because in south america where they have privatized water in many cases, this has caused hideous situations where people can't afford to have water. >> yeah. first of all hydro and thermo. the hydro power dams get their power from the falling water going through turbines. it is a perfectly clean and renewable source of energy and
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we call that hydroelectric power. the thermoelectric get the same by heating fossil fuels and generating steam and turbines and things of that sort. also nuclear is another form. does require a lot of cooling for water used chiefly for cooling because water is a remarkable molecule, which also is in this book. it does some things that no other molecules do and can absorb an enormous amount of heat which is one of the reasons why under global warming by the way probably any anyway the oceans have been absorbing a lot of the heat that would otherwise have gone into the atmosphere but there are limits and i'm afraid we don't know when we are going to hit it but i think some of the climate change people do know. as s. for the privatization question, in bolivia and the problems that you are referring to, of course everything depends
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, i think we are conflating many things and we have got to be careful to separate what we are talking about. first of all there's the question of who owns the water and who is is the provider of the water surface. there probably are but i don't know too many cases where governments actually sell the water, that the water be owned by a private company so that possibly on a large-scale, large scale, that makes it but i am not aware of it. i think those are contracts given out like we have many of them in the united states, american water works being a big company that runs the municipal water systems for a number of cities in that depends very much on how the government, which is ultimately in charge, decides to regulate and contract out with the providers of those services. if they say okay you can read to the cost in a poor area like they did in bolivia beyond what
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people can pay, well yeah then you are going to give things to happen there but that ultimately is a political decision in political hands. it is not to be confused with using really the necessarily the pure market competition to try to improve the efficiency of an allocation use of water. those are quite different things. i'm not sure if i explained it well or co-. >> steven solomon is the author of the confidence game, how unelected central bankers are governing to change global economy. he has written for the economist, business weekend the "new york times." for more information visit the water
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>> we are here at this years cpac conference, year's cpac conference, talking with marji ross president of regnery publishing. marjah can you tell us what is the latest in your series of politically incorrect guide? be sure. this is a series we launched about four years ago and it was based on the idea that people have a sense in the conservative movement that they are not really getting the facts, the information, the history on a lot of subjects, whether it is in school or from the mainstream media, and our goal is to buffett some f sent to try to tell the real story without worrying about political correctness. we started with the politically incorrect guide to american history which was a big seller and we now have 20 books in this
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series. the the series. the most recent one is just out, called the politically incorrect guide to the vietnam war. it is particularly nice to have these books at cpac because there are so many students and young people and this is a series of books that is in a lot of ways positioned for again feel that they don't really know the truth about what happened. they hear about things like vietnam war and they hear the vietnam war compared to the war on terror and yet i have a sense that they are not getting the real story. and so this book is designed to say, you didn't get the real story on the vietnam war and you are probably not getting the real story on the war on terror from the current administration because of their political agenda. >> last year you have deals met and survival guide, was that a big seller for you and is at the beginning of another series possibly?
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>> aren't you prescient. thank you for asking. we are talking about starting a series of ultimate man's survival guides. it is a lot of fun and it is also the kind of book that covers a wide range of topics from a conservative family values sort of rugged independence kind of.of view. and again this is another book that has appealed greatly to a younger audience and a lot of people i know bought the book and gave it to their son when they graduated from college, when they just got married. it is a very fun and in judging book and something we will do more of. >> who is your best-selling author at present? >> right now are hot book, if i can say it that way is according to disaster by mark t.'s and. this is a book that came out a few weeks ago by a former chief speechwriter in the bush white house, and the book makes a very
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strong argument that the cia interrogation program was the reason that there was not another attack against us after 9/11. and it is really pretty remarkable. most people agree it was remarkable that there was not another attack and has not been one since then. he argued that is because of the cia interrogation program and that when president obama came into office and dismantle that program, it was a very dangerous and risky thing to do. he also has a very very interesting argument about the whole question of torture and whether or not the tactics really did qualify as torture. makes a strong argument both on a practical sense and a moral sense that it wasn't torture and that not only did we find out really valuable information but that we were actually very careful about staying on the right line of those tactics. it has gotten a lot of talk. even last sunday on the talk
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shows when you heard dick cheney and joe biden debating, they were debating this very subject and i think this book sparked a lot of that current debate. >> and what is coming up for 2010? be what is coming up? you see newt gingrich here in our booth. and we have a big newt gingrich book coming in april. we are very excited about that. we published his last three non- fiction political books and they have all been bestsellers. his last big political book was called real change and it came out during the presidential campaign so we haven't had a book since president obama is come into office and now is his chance to sort of give a report card on how the obama administration has done and what he feels we need to do to get the country back on track. >> we see that and" ann coulter is up here. is she one of your authors as well? specie is actually a political
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commentator and writer for human events which is a weekly conservative newspaper that our parent company publishes. ann coulter is one of their best to loved writers and she writes for human events and participate in their editorial board meetings every week and that is her editorial home. we continue to publish her in the paper and also we have a weekly eland or that we send out to about 1 million subscribers for free silly tweet when she writes her column, people can subscribe to that and get it in their mailbox every week. >> can you tell me about what is the relationship between gregory and eagle? >> eagle publishing is our parent company sued eagle publishing is a multimedia, conservative publishing company that owns human events. regnery publishing, the conservative book club, red
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state in a group of financial newsletters as well and we all come together for the same mission of promoting conservative values than serving the conservative marketplace but it is a nice combination of publishing businesses that coverage number of different media. >> are you here every year? how long have you been here? be human events has been one of the cosponsors with acu of cpac for decades so we have had a long presence here and it is a great show. i like coming to the show to meet folks that we are publishing newspapers for. >> thank you very much. >> thank you very much. >> this was praga, the capital of czechoslovakia and the 1950s and today it is very sort of a colorful city because it is full of tourists but at the time it was very much bleak
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and not very colorful. as a child, you cannot control really what country you were born or what political system you were born into her situation so i was born just after the communist takeover of czechoslovakia, and i will try to move the picture this is the family house. this picture was taken just before 1989, and maybe even in september of 1989 and this is what prague looks like and it was sort of falling apart and i think that is what i was trying to create in the picture. so you just see it was very bleak. if you come to prague now, this is the main street leading to the cafés and dress shops and everything so it is completely different. when i was a little child, i was told that i liked to draw so
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likes to draw so this was how i started, a baby who likes to draw. people say you were talented since you were a little child? not necessarily. sometimes when parents wanted their child wanted to be quiet they would give him a pencil and let him draw. i don't think it happened exactly when i was a baby like that but i needed to start the book somewhere, so this was the reason. i was grounded by a loving family. i wish was just showing the contrast between what happened in public life in private life because both parents were artists and they encouraged us to draw and do things then of course nothing about politics outside or the situation would come to our minds, because we were living in this sort of family harmony, at least as i remember it. a strange thing happened because my father was a filmic or film make her who was drafted into the army. usa filmmaker and he was sent to
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china, because the chinese government, as the czech government was all one big fraternity as the communist government, to teach how to make documentary films so my father is an 8-year-old man was sent to china and i'm dealing with that in my book. now we know what is happening in china but it was so far away and took many weeks to get a plane to rush and rush and the only new chinese people use chopsticks. my father disappeared and i thought as a child, he was gone for many years. as an adult i discovered he was gone only for 19 months but as a child i thought it was gone forever. he was sort of adventurous and borrowed a costume in tibet to look tibetan and the methodology, who was 19 years old. and that's why i lost a great
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friend and supporter and somebody who was -- back a picture with my sister and i drew. i true maps. this is not my map. this is a map of my daughter's. no maps that i true survived. i wanted to discover the world and my father indirectly told me when he came back it was much bigger than what i was taught in school. this was a picture when i went to school. the middle of the last century, for the first time, this is when the problems started because all of a sudden we were exposed to the political facts. at school we were told different than at home and today i am wondering how what was that parents would tell us not to talk about certain things and then we would start to make sense out of things because the first grade in second grade and third grade you works post to all the propaganda to become
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young pioneers and very excitedly this was what everybody should do. i am dealing with that in the world too and this is the picture of the influences that i'm being confused, walking in the street there were all of these mix of propaganda with not only stalin and khrushchev but these very different books. the pilot who was crawling to moscow. it suggested because if i speak to people from east germany or russia everybody has the same references to all the things about these things that we were exposed in the east same ways. this again is from the world, dealing with the things that happened in the world. they are not exactly happening
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and exactly the same order of time. what was important was the hungarian uprising and the cuban missile crisis which came much later. president kennedy and his assassination in dallas, the vietnam war and this was interesting because i didn't know it was one thing which we found out that we both were hiding under the tables in fear of a nuclear war, because it was the flu should at that time that the students would be hiding under the table, like it was solve anything. i think i didn't like prague, what was happening very much. it was a dark place. it was like not that much fun. at that time i painted everything in our house. a psychiatrist told me that i
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was probably afraid my father would leave on some big trip again. the light switches, and then i found these old chairs so i've made a series of the chairs for people who i wanted to be my friends, so this was somebody who was famous circus artists. this was a famous soccer player so it has even the sox and this was a famous tennis player because-- at that time nobody knew that i would become an artist in my life and let's face it is an old person i can say chairs are made for sitting and not for painting on them. [laughter] this chair was not quite dry and my friend came to visit and to my shock i would see my painting weeding through the door. [laughter] at that time it was not appreciated at all. i also drew a lot of schools, so this is just from later time. i had maps of physics because i
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was doodling all the time and using it to doodle because i don't think people doodle any more. i think they would doodle on facebook probably. i did all the different pictures at the time of people flying somewhere, but i can understand the concept that there would be something wrong with the government who is telling me you cannot go from this place to that place, because it was part of our lives and nobody was questioning that. so i was dealing with all kinds of things. i wanted to be a painter. these are paintings. i wanted to be a musician. this is alexander duchenne speaking to people in prague. this was the best time of my life because i was young and all of a sudden you could go on travel and i would hitchhike all over europe. we started to play rock music. so all of these things came together at the same time and we thought that the world opened up and it would be reasonable.
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i remember going in 1968, hitchhiking from belgium to england and arguing with somebody who was british army officer retired and he said you think russians won't come. i said they cannot do it because what would the whole world say about it? the big shock of 1968 when the russians came and of course i was in london on the first of august when the russian army came and i went to denmark for a month and it took me two months to come back to prague but in my book i took the liberty to sort of not explain it because it had become too difficult. i think today if i was not-- the russian tank complaints came i would would have left right there and would not spend another 15 years or something trying to figure out russia. rush b. this was a portion of the book tv program. you can view the entire program in many other book tv programs on line. go to type the name of the author or
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book into the search area in the upper left-hand corner of the page. select the "watch link." now you can view the entire program. you might also explore the recently on tv booktv box are the featured video box defined regions and feature programs. >> o. johnny is jim lehrer's most recent novel. mr. lehrer, how many novels have you written? speak it is the 19th novel. the 20th is coming out next april. does artie done and that is going to be a magic mark for me, but i, who is counting? be when do you find the time and word you write it? >> i discovered many years ago that, if i really wanted to do something and it really meant a lot to me i could find the time to do it. writing these novels is extremely important to me. it is part of who i am a part of
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what i do so when i wake up in the morning i no longer think am i going to write today? i think about what i'm going to write and they do it a little bit every day, usually early in the morning and i work all weekend. when i'm working on a novel it is like having of low-grade fever, it is with me all the time and as they say it is just crucial to who i am and what i do. i get edgy when i'm not writing. >> laptop? longhand? >> always laptop. i was a newspaper man in been in the newspaper business for many years. i think with my fingers. people will tell me, i think with my fingers instead of my mind sometimes but i do everything on a laptop or on a computer. i take notes and stuff obviously unreal people but i really do think with my fingers now. >> when you are writing, does your professional life come into your characters?
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>> guessed, it does but in sudden ways. hemingway said years and years ago that if you want to be a writer get a job on a newspaper because it will force you to deal with the english language and some semi-coherent way every day but more importantly it will expose you to all kinds of people and all kinds of situations that you can later use in your picture writing. that is exactly what is happened to me and there is no kind of person that i haven't met and interviewed and gotten to know so as a consequence when i sit down to write a novel i have this wealth of material to use, and i just pick and choose. i don't consciously say, i am going to base the story on a piece of journalism that i have done or whatever but it just happens. it is part of my experience as a journalist and it comes out of me as i am developing a character or a story. >> very quickly, the plot of "oh, johhny"?
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>> "oh, johhny" is about a kid who grew up in a little town in western maryland, great baseball player, has a great future to be a great baseball player, major leagues. world war ii happens. he joins the arranged and goes through hell. the battle of okinawa. he comes back so ready to play baseball. he survives and comes back ready to play baseball and his dream to be a major league baseball player goes up into smoke with world war ii is what it boils down to but he can't-- still has that dream and still has it and still has it and it doesn't quite work out for him because he has had a rough time in a war. but he is a good kid and he tries very hard and he just doesn't quite make it but the fact that he is still trying and trying to find his jareem is what it was about. >> jim lehrer and his 19th novel, "oh, johhny."


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