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tv   Alec Mac Gillis Fulfillment  CSPAN  December 15, 2021 1:05am-2:05am EST

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>> and with upton sinclair at the time. and then was dangerous. and then 18 years later the
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market capitalization exceeded $1 trillion with the economy andd society. and then to cover politics. and then has appeared in "the new york times" in the new york and the atlantic. and then andy in ohio with that frontline documentary of behind america about those forces of the once thriving city in ruin. also the author of the biography of mitch mcconnell with the guardian in the senate. sorry a should not be cracking
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jokes. no time for that. now a contributing writer. i and also author of the books including silicon valley the financial times and publishers weekly we are grateful to talk about his latest book in the one click america. >> thank you so much. welcome to seattle. >> and with that late night in seattle and it's paid to have you here. and when the book came out so
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tell us what you see with this book. >> thank you townhall for having this event. i wishh i could be there. and then im grateful for that. thank you for moderating this. and so it is really helpful. this is not to be a book about amazon that regional equality and disparity in america. may have been traveling all around the country as a national political reporter
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starting in the obama years with the 2008 election and the early administration. and then with the great recession and then to come back to washington and then be blown away by the incredible authority on display and then to connect with what is going on around the country. and i have previous experience and that has been devastated ssby the departure of ge and then and then and then with baltimore a few years ago. and then with that talk about
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prospects. such incredibly unhealthy balance and then they end up with those problems. and then trump was elected. but then he spent the next year to write about these regional disparities. so that is a claim for two reasons. it is so ubiquitous now and then just to show you our american now. at work says a symptom of expression. because it is the driver.
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and then with the concentration of wealth a regional concentration of wealth. and then with three years ago. >> and then it has gotten some very wonderful reviews of all the major outlets. and with the l.a. times last week but they did say to go with the story but it was very complementary and something that is going to happen to the people that you introduce in this book and as you did introducing amazon. [laughter] it is in the review and the wire the hbo series was a
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series of human stories used to illustrate the changing economy and a system of winners and losers now institutions have failed. so tell me how you found your people and tell us the vehicles for understanding what is going on in the united states right now? >> sure. and those that were struggling with the problems prosperity. and then also washington dc was an example with that
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washington divide for the not worked out very nicely. but then because i lived here and see it up close they spend a lot of time in ohio. and that's in the book as well. is there a fascinating people and then they have a story to tell. and those that make cargo boxes for amazon. and then his downward
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mobility. that made it a little more distant i can southeastern ohio. but then with the essential district because i feel like that's a story a lot of people outside of seattle are not aware of. >> and so then the community and what happened to it was the members of the community
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and then to decide to focus because she's such a compelling person with her story and with her sadness with the central district. >> but then think of katie wilson. and i came to her later as a character and as a whole state developed in 2018 and then to repeal it was full-time and dramatic and then at city hall that day again then it was of the activists were working on that issue with thehe housing problem in
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the homelessness problem. and then the path is very eloquent talking about these problems. it is an incredible discovery for me. with a huge steel works in baltimore that were completely wiped out and then someone who's grandson and then we can talk about that generational mentioned. and then after a 69 -year-old mann and then spent decades
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working and then comes down in the exact same space at the warehouse. and with that transformation of working america. >> it is really extraordinary. >> i want to get back to seattle. >> this is a book you dive deep into the longer history. >> that steel mill in baltimore including the amazon warehouse was emblematic of another area of capitalism way amazon is now so can you talk
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about what was great about it and what wasn't? because sometimes we talk about the name of the economy that we need to go back to the good old days so tell us more about whatbo you discovered. >> it is an incredible story i was so w blown away. ythe way up the road in this space. and then how fast and intense extraordinary places was. and five or 6000 people. and then segregated downtown. and then it became clear.
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but then how important because if it is incredibly dangerous and then with those basic conditions of extreme heat and constant risk. and then as it comes through and. but as you go through history then things changech over time. at the outset and then crazy
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hours and they stayed on the job. crazy productivity expectations. but then of course over time. and a word organize. and then the union came in and then things dramatically improved across the board. with benefits and conditions. and then to have big gains. and with the integration of the workforce and then that
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was very badly managed and then it completely vanishes by 2012 it is gone completely. and then gps says with that wide expanse. and then i have the's warehouses. and there is a bunch of others also. and then to talk about the difference in the work obviously it is physically taxing but then many like
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them. and then as dangerous as it was, it paid a lot more but more importantly give a sense of purpose and community that was the reason why they allow these men to stay there for decades for their whole careers and not so he said that you see the workers go screaming out of their after the shift and people are just desperate to get out of there and get home.
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but it's very isolating work and then you are out of there. iand then back in the day men tack about it's fire crew. and there was a colorado worker who said there is no way. >> that's for the difference comes down to. it is about that with purpose and dignity and meaning in your life.
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that is what goes along with the much lower pay. >> yes. >> and amazon is not the only postindustrial big employer that has gotten a lot scrutiny to become a disruptive force. walmart is another example with a huge workforce contingent. so in what ways was it different? what about the model of work with the other new forms of work? >> it comes down to a couple maintains that and with
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geography. and then with all of these small towns. and then and then with that weakening and with all that community that comes like that. but then also with the book it has created with that winner
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take all. but then with walmart and then that vastly enriched the large family and then at the grotesque levels. but then all these little towns now like cosco with the tech giants. and then with those cities and left behind ones.
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>> and then he pays a lot more taxes than amazon does. and then to gain the system. but then to go through the online. and then with those paper gains. but walmart is paying billions more in taxes every year. then amazon. >> .
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>> and then went that you are tracing this and then the role of politics and policy. and over those last four years. to re-create pathways ofwa opportunity. and what are the policy roots? and a then to see that culpability across the spectrum with your story. but then that leaves one and
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iowith that regional concentration of wealth. and that the last approach to the monopolies of the four more decades has played a big role in this. to put in very broad terms the more they have time to destiny the economy them more than of the wealth prosperity. and then to deal with that
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problem somehow then just end up dispersing. but that wealth and prosperity around the country. and then my industry of media. but now and then what matters most in 60 percent is controlled by two companies. and then partly because of this.
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but then to be a triathlete. but that is just one example. >> and then it started on the right. and then to overthrow the approach to antitrust. and then has been become quite bipartisan. and then to preside over the massive growth of the giants. and with the biden administration be willing to take a different attack on
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this front? and with those precursors. >> with those capitals of inequality in the bay area. and then in a portrait of the city. and to look at the challenges with this place. >> i have been there before. way back in 2004. and then with a lot of natural
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resource then you see that it goes downhill and then it is the porch and the ships and all that is coming down and then there is a sense of that and then even to come back and then the wealth it knocked me out and then you just see all of that but now on the 17th
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floor but also it is so surreal and with the central district there is a great history of it with washington as a historian and then i found out it was the baltimore library with that historical monograph about the central district. and then to come there and see. so this is famous story. more than seen in any other city.
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and thenn to see it going down the street. and then to look down for that neighborhood that was just barely hanging on. and with that critical aspect of it. and what happened and then to tap into the strain politics and with that two-party with that government strain widely raised more tax money?
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and then with those conflicting feelings. but then it is ways that are not entirely welcome to but provide the same time with the prosperity and then fight for 200 grand. but then not to share the golden goose. and then with the prosperity. and with that reluctance and
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then to diminish it. and then with that balance to that equality. >> and it has multiple causes. and then with some prescriptions. >> but with the l.a. times review. but with that concentration of wealth. and with that inequality.
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and with that geographic imbalance in the concentration of wealth. then that is a question. and then for seattle's future. and what prosperity looks like and then to have different ideas that amazon and microsoft are two of the biggest employers. and then there is a concentration of wealth so what advice do you have? and then at the local level. and so what does one do?
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>> but the key is not to think about it as local. and with the local problems that you are dealing with and the national one. and then so often but then the people think that we can just fix it by regulated limits. and with that broader context. and then it is an credible concentration of prosperity involved in the country and a handful of places.
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and then to be seen if ever if it has grown to these incredible levels. and so then i just request there be more of an awareness of how these problems and the broader context. and although they are worried about the housing problem iny' do not want to surrender to lose their status.
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and then to have so much growth. but then other cities that are out there also quite dense. >> and then you can have climate friendly golden prosperity there. and the fact that we are now. but thenge with the lavish townhouse costs more. and then just 30 miles up the road that if anything were nicer back in the day they
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went to be seen. >> that happened just two years ago? and then one of the higher-paying jobs in dc from baltimore so it only gets worse. but thenn too often it is that narrow>> local fight that doesn't connect the larger issues. >> i will bring in some ideas questions. and then to put those in the chat i will try to address as many as we can. when interesting provocative is that is it technology or the internet? and amazon pays less. so whatma is your reaction?
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that on —- but then he new e-commerce word happen. but then that is true to a certain extent. the during these larger structural things. that then too often but it is frame to quickly or to exclusively that the company does have agency and the
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responsibility. for the certain things that has chosen to do. i didn't have to do things and they with all the choices they made. and then particularly and then demanding workplace for their workers and then the reports again and just how the high pressure. there is a reason why a lot of people cannot hack it. it is pre- mma and the choice that they could have taken
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this moment in seattle as a choice to address the balance in this country and make the greatest workforce at this moment to come. and we will build it. with that when we bring the question that he laughed at me he said you don't understand amazon at all or jeff at all. this is not how we think. there is no emotion. so yes, and then they make choices along the way that
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make these problems especially dire. that the notion that on prosperity it's good for the country. that is something that cuts across and it is common across a lot of industries. and what are they measured on? stock performance? >> it is a story a racial inequality.. it is connected to issue but with the broader political economy of the 21st century america and it isn't just retail but also what is
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incredibly important with amazon itself and also microsoft is a big player and google is working hard to get up there for with that physical manifestation can you talk about thinking broadly abouton the tech driven infrastructure and thehe concentration of that? a>> and then to talk about the cloud and then go to that world. and then i go into many places in virginia and then with the east coast and then to go west washington. and then there is old whole news for all.
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and then how huge and aggressive and then that these local communities and to build them because and we get a couple of dozen employees out of them. and they are simply on —- super heavily guarded that now the biggest question is the energy.
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and with the grand claims to make them renewable energy dependent as possible and the reason the whole day cluster grew up in dc there's all this cheap call electricity. and then and then there is a major reckoning with the energy part of it. and thenst with that coast grad is on something very different. and that was a catalyst.
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and it's new and different. and i live in seattle which is very blue. and there are a lot of people and then if policy is part of the answer and finding common ground a common understanding. and then for folks like me to
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live in seattle and don't have a window into what it is like to be in day in ohio. and so then do you think and then with the universal people and vice versa? and then with that disconnect
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and what we have right now is so toxic and did not play such a big role in the trump election. and is not jesse no fee on —- as you know phobia but it is they are. and then information more vulnerable to certain appeals. and then how those maker parties come down by highly educated in those cities like seattle and boston and new york and it just happens and that is an that is working on
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the white class white voters who now dominate the parties. >> that is not me at all. but then even still with the democratic party has very strong support among the nine —- the nonwhite working class. and then it is all the people and then with amazon and other uconline services and then with those numbers people pack it over to them. that is at democratic
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coalition. and then also to make gains among working-class. but then with that working-class republican. and then with those winner take all cities. but then also the way the senate is set up that i still
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think better way to do is to address the problem that is reduce the regional equality. >> so do you think, this is, i will push back in part because in response to your question that economic decline versus races a man's you know phobia
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which is something clearly that trump tapped into and then clinton had a larger share of working-class voters and then with the economic discontent there isng much left behind. and then particularly in times of economic upheaval but that emotional realignment help to resort that? what needs to be done? >> it is a question. that when those certain places experience a prosperity.
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>> but then there is the democrats anyny of a few of the map that them in a audit it doesn't benefit them npolitically. but economically. and so and then with all sorts of support and with a country club republicans and it is all true but the reason why trump wine in 2016 is he did a lot better with lower income white voters and with the obama
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trump voter which did exist and they were crucial and then to bring in out of the woodwork so yes democrats that could have dramatically improved from past republicans. >> so that economic story it helps to explain why so many votersoo in 2016 the democrats and the republicans but all those from southeastern ohio
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solicitor with the fact who can turn the table. but i o thank you tell the story carefully. this is one of the things in the book has a longtail not just to get to amazon. and then to attend demise with the tail that wags the dog of american politics c and economics that is comparable to the legendary companies. so we need to wrap up but american history can be a bummer.
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and then to be made optimistic. ands then with the hopeful people and then to be a very helpful person. and then to tax the three in 2018. and then in that tax and then the fight goes on. and then to be incredibly helpful person.
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and then to go back to southeast ohio. and then in a small town that he is working so hard at it. as , now at the kroger and also town auditor and recovering huge local tax fraud by his predecessor on the job and brings his town a lot more money this way a and all these plans for the town. i find such hope in these people, and that's why i actually love reporting, is that you always are going to find these people, and that's why i actually don't get too down about all this, because you
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actually need the people and see the lying in -- the light in them and the spirit, and that is completely restorative and really is what keeps me going, and what fuels know find even more of those people. >> fantastic. great note tend to only. i'm going to turn it over to town hall to take out. thank you for staying up late with is, alec macgillis. >> thank you both so much with appreciate you spending this evening with us and talking with us, interesting topic. and also thank you to everyone who is watching from home. if you'd like to pick up a copy of the book, please do so through our book store partners third place book, there's a rink
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future on book tv on c-span2. >> today we continue to focus on ai innovation to fresh exploration of ai history. as well as the choices that we face of digital citizens.


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