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tv   U.S. House of Representatives  CSPAN  January 22, 2010 1:00pm-6:30pm EST

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and we kind of grew up as a railroad town in arkansas. i say that -- we love our roadways, our waterways, on a navigation project -- transportation is a large industry in our state. in fact, we are happy to say, at least we are, that caterpillar will be opening a brand new road greater facility in north little rock. nebraska road graders made in north america will have a north little rock tag on it. and the future of our country -- we will have a current -- census. by the middle of the century of looks like we will be pushing somewhere in the neighborhood of a half a billion folks spirit are tracked -- billion folks. we are excited about the innovation the administration is looking at in terms of reprivatizing funding.
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. >> thank you, thanks for all your leadership in arkansas. as i said, the president, vice-
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president and other members of the cabinet will be making some announcements about high-speed rail. there have been some very strong proposals from many different regions around the country on high-speed rail. high-speed rail is coming to america and is coming to america because of the $8 billion, which is a billion times more than we have ever had at dot because of president obama's vision and vice-president biden's vision on this. they have that inserted in the economic recovery plan because they know that is what americans want. i think when you see the role out of the high-speed rail regions, what you will see is the start, not dissimilar, to when the interstate system started five decades ago. not all lines were on the map, and not all the money was there to pay for it, but here we are
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with a state of the art interstate system. and i think a few decades that from now, we will have a state of the art passenger rail system in america. [applause] we have a billion dollars we will make announcements on. the administration will be soon. the congress gets it. they included in our transportation appropriations bill $2.5 billion, high-speed rail. that is an additional money that we have been looking at, spending throughout this fiscal year. the other thing is, we gather all the people making a train sets and infrastructure for high-speed rail. we gathered them in a room in washington and we said to them, what we do not want to happen is, we do not want to use
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taxpayer money to have a high speed rail going and then have the equipment built somewhere else. we want it built in america with american workers. [applause] we have companies from other countries, france, spain, germany, and asia in america today looking at facilities, looking at opportunities where our train sets and our infrastructure can be built in america. and it will be, and it will be using our workers who know how to manufacture. that will be a boon, i think, to our economy and send a good message that our people know how to build trains, and also the infrastructure for that. we are just at the starting point.
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but the future is very bright for this. >> mr. secretary, i have three grandchildren. i know that they will be in their productive years in the 40's and 50's. if we do not get started now -- we appreciate the strong beginnings of the obama administration. starting now is an absolute essential. and the confidence we have in all the different parts of the country ready to be good partners. >> thank you for being here. you have answered a lot of questions about high-speed rail. i would like to compliment you on polley to rottenberg, who was here yesterday and represented you very well. i am on the other side of that in clearwater, fla., hoping for the high-speed rail. i just want to know what other monies are going to be appropriated after this $8 billion, which you have answered. but i want you to know we have
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stone crab and grouper for you as soon as you bring out to florida. [laughter] >> i will be there. yes, sir? >> scott smith from mesa, arizona. thank you for your visit. come to mesa. i can out cook him any day. we are especially grateful in mesa for the changes you referred to in a small start because of our very successful 21-mile light rail in the phoenix area. and mesa, i believe, is the first city to apply for a small start under light rail for an extension that will come into downtown. we are ecstatic about it. >> congratulations. the >> thank you very much. one question i would like to ask is, you have talked a have talkednpo's can kasam reformation that might have to come through -- you have talked
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a lot about npo's and some reformation that might have to come through them. there are some flaws, can't -- inconsistencies that have been affected by the npo system as we have it now. what would you recommend to reform npo's? >> i like the approach that a lot of these other big cities have taken where they have reached out to cities all over the region to work together and to use the npo's to develop a system that you have to have to develop light rail or transit for buses or walking paths or biking paths. this cannot and at the city borders. we know that there are people living in rural parts of cook
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county, for example. we want to work with this organization. we want to work with npo's to get to the kind of reform that can be inclusive, to make people feel like they really have a stake and is not just one or two of the big players and everybody else is fending for themselves. i think that is the direction that we are going and we are taking our cues from some examples that already taking place around america. -- that are already taking place around america. we know there needs to be some reformthe npo's note that -- there needs to be some reform. the npo's know that as well. i think we need to come up with some reform that reflects what
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is the serrie so that you are in the game and helping with the decision making. that is what we need to get to. >> and to the peoria to it may set route is still one of the most popular. >> peoria, ill. to mesa, arizona. >> i am from the city of denton, texas. we are at the point of the triangle, denton. we decided to bypass some barriers to success that the program had and would created our own transit authority to connect with that -- to connect the dots between denton and the metroplex. one of the risks we are facing now, however, is that in great measure, we are counting on the transit oriented the element of around the stations in the future to justify our heavy investment in creating our own transit authority.
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that is now at risk. financing has become so unsteady, a lot of the projected development has been pulled off even though we are up a point of within a year or so of having -- at the point of within a year or so of having these trances stations open. i would ask what ever could be done -- these transit stations open. i would ask whatever could be done to allow this to a moment to occur because the effect of that development is tremendous, both locally and for the future success of the transit stops themselves. >> i appreciate that, thank you. >> mr. secretary, can driscoll and i'm the mayor of the salem, massachusetts. thank you for being here. you clearly get it, which is great. one quick point, one of the made -- i am one of the many cities that has the tiger brands
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here. those are transformational projects and i'm excited that those are going to be moving forward. one pleat i have is that as important as the road that works, the bridges, the public transportation and the high- speed rail is, if we cannot completely leave port development and waterfront out of that equation. the for a city like salem, we are small and historic. at one time, we had a smaller ports than boston. we want to take advantage of the waterfront. we do not have an interstate. salem harbor is our economic development corridor. one way to do that is to report development. it is also a great way to get in and out of boston, commuter traffic. and i'm hoping that as we think about federal funding for transportation that there is a small portion that can be dedicated to the waterfront development. it is an older and historic area
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and it could be maximized to get people to work in a very efficient way. >> i think if you were to talk to members of congress to put together the economic recovery plan, one of the reasons they put a tiger -- we call a tiger, but the discretion money there -- the discretionary money there, was because there were really no other opportunities for ports. there were some very strong support proposals in the announcements that have been made. there was 20 billion for roads, $8 billion for transit, more for airports, but no specificity for ports. we looked at the $1.5 billion as an opportunity. i think those of you that are interested in ports and port opportunities will be very pleased. the we were pleased with the
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proposals that we received. >> i will take that as a guest? [laughter] ]a yes? [laughter] >> it is a guest on the fact that we get on ports. >> all right, all right. >> we are thank falful in kentuy for the money we have gotten, however, we are the lerch -- third largest city in kentucky. and after the transportation funds came in for louisville and looks at -- lexington, a city the size of bowling green received $0 because it becomes political. it is much easier to get it to the parts of the state where you have your reelection coming up. the question i have is that when you look at future funding, how do you feel about the type of structure that the block grants have provided us in cdbg and
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the energy efficiency conservation grants that would allow cities direct access to some of those funds? it's a gimmick bowling green, which was in the top 9% -- a city like bowling green, which was in the top 9% of job growth in the nation, so that we can have access to that -- those funds for job growth as well. >> $38 billion in the house bill is for the department of transportation. i think the point i was trying to make to center durbin today that i think made -- needs to be made to congress is, in order for cities, in order for mayors, in order for creative people in the cities to do the creative things that they want to do and fulfill dreams that they have been dreaming about in their communities, the tiger program is the way to go. the reason that the $48 billion was structured the way it was
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with $28 billion going to the states is because of our relationship with the states. congress wanted the money out the door within 120 days, or at least obligated. the only way you can do that is with these relationships like what we have with the dot. right after the president signed the bill, met with a number of you -- i met with a number of you and i heard the complaints. we are probably not going to have access to this because the state is going to decide. our answer to it is tiger. we will encourage congress to step up again on tiger because it is the one way that the cities have direct access to the money without going anywhere else. [applause] but if the congress, again, in another jobs bill -- which i think they will -- wants to get people to work quickly on projects that are ready to go, we have to use the state system
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to do it. i know that you do not want to hear that -- >> again, the state system did not work necessarily -- well, it did not work to get the money to bowling green in the service transportation funds. the block grant system worked very well for the energy efficiency and conservation block grants and cdbg. $500,000 to my city means a great deal. i know that we can decide how to use that money. and the grants are great, but we are now in a pool with all the cities around the united states. i really hope that you would consider a block grant formula, or something that could allow cities as small as 50,000 to have direct access to some funds so that we get to decide where it gets to go. >> congress will decide how this money is going to be structured.
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i suspect that there will be a real demand with unemployment still at 10% to really try to get it out quickly. i take your point, and if we have anything to say about it we will make the case, but i think the new jobs bill will be structured pretty much the way the current one is. >> thank you. >> yes? >> secretary, i appreciate you coming out and talking with us today. i was born in 1988, so i think the odds are good that i am the youngest mayor in the room today. i am from muskogee, okla. where about 40,000 people are just south of tulsa. our big administration thing is to work, all of that. we have all of the forms of transportation, real way,
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airport, port, you name it. i have seen people talk about transportation my entire life. what is the future of transportation in america? interstate bought -- interstate highways were started under eisenhower. what is the 20% 3 message that is going to be used? -- the 21st century method that is going to be used? >> i worked on congress -- around congress for over 30 years and i was on the transportation committee. if you look at the span of transportation in our country from when it was begun and, certainly, when the federal government got involved, i do not know if there is another administration that has taken this kind of interest in america's infrastructure and america's transportation than president obama has. the we have never had $8 billion for passenger rail.
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i do not know of another administration that listened as carefully as we did to all of you a year ago about the idea that you need the new starts money and it should not take 100 years to get it. that is a little exaggeration, but you know what i am getting at. we listened to on that. and now, we are developing a new program where you can submit an application and and different set of criteria will be used that will be helpful to all of you. and i think my point about the president being for a strong, robust, comprehensive authorization bill is true. and approve of that is the $48 billion that we are spending out now as a result of economic recovery and the fact that the president is pushing congress on another jobs bill, of which we will receive an enormous amount of money. to put people to work. these dollars put people to work.
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and they help the infrastructure of america. i do not think it has never been brighter. because we have people like president obama, vice president biden and others in this administration that will work together to make sure that transportation is of the highest priority as a domestic program. >> thank you, mr. secretary. >> thank you. yes? >> good morning, i am sending frankel from britain, new york. many -- brighton, new york. many people think about nyc as new york, but upstate new york is an area that has seen economic depression and real challenges over the past few decades, regardless of whether the country or the city of new york is experiencing a boom. toward that end, it will be critically important that upstate new york have access to
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high-speed rail in the first instance. louise slaughter hails from my area and represents a part of my town. i think it is something that will really benefit a whole swath of communities across upstate new york, and then leading westward toward chicago. i implore you to have that section when you have your plan. the second i would like to identify is the importance of universities and colleges as economic engines in the rochester area. the university of rochester is the largest employer in the county. part in the city of rochester, part in britain. the infrastructure is inadequate to accommodate the university's planned growth, which not only delivers medical, by medical, biotech types of research --
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biomedical, biotech types of research that we're transitioning into a medical moat -- medical mode for spinoffs and new companies to develop, but we need funding for improvements in the interstate system area near the university to accommodate that growth. otherwise, that growth will not be able to happen because the zoning and environmental reviews will show that the area cannot support that from a traffic perspective. that is another issue to think about. our institutions of higher education and economic engines and the relationship of that to the transportation infrastructure system that we have. thank you. >> thank you. yes? >> i am the mayor of the city of waco, texas.
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i would like to ask, -- first of all, secretary lahood, thank you for being here to answer our questions. >> thank you. >> i would like to ask what the effect is in terms of long-term funding of highways and bridges and the use of a concept of users are the ones who pay. and we know the gasoline tax is not taking care of. in keeping up with the needs, i wonder if there's any serious consideration about this being a factor of those who you to -- who use the roads, with a factor of weight and distance, so that those who are using the roads the most are paying the most for those roads and bridges. >> i think when you watch congress and it see congress as the authorization bill gets played out, there will be a great deal of debate about how we fund all of these things and,
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certainly, the president has made it clear that he is not in favor of raising the gasoline tax when there is 10 percent and unemployment in america. we have talked about -- 10% unemployment in america. but we have talked about ways to fund these projects in america. your in communities where you can raise a lot of money with tolls. i know it is controversial in some places, but in some places people have raised a lot of money in order to add an additional lane onto a road, or build a bridge, or fix up a bridge or whatever. there are probably three or four different things that congress will debate. and certainly, i think if you talk to people in the trucking industry who used a lot of the interstate systems around america, they pay a pretty good chunk of tax into the state coffers for the use of the
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roadways. all of these things i think will be part of the debate in congress. >> thank you. >> yes, sir? >> good morning, secretary. i am from southern california. but we want to applaud the obama administration's commitment to high speed and passenger rail. you mentioned earlier that there are two rounds of funding for high-speed rail. is it the obama administration is intention to provide long- term funding for planning and development for high speed and inner-city corridors throughout the u.s.? >> i think when you see the announcements that the president will be making about high-speed rail and others in the administration, we know that in every region that has submitted proposals to us, everyone is different.
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you all in california have been working on passenger rail for a long time, as have folks on the northeast corridor. some folks in the country are just at the starting point. we are going to try to use the resources to jump-start opportunities around the country, not just in one part of the country but around the country. some will be for planning, some will be for actually putting train set on tracks. the way we have an evaluated the proposals is based on what the need is in the different parts of the country. i think when you see the announcement, you will see that it will go for different iterations, depending on where people are in those regions of the country. >> for the next reauthorization, is there a commitment to providing long-term funding? >> for high speed rail? >> yes, sir. >> that will be up to congress.
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but what i said earlier was in our appropriations bill for transportation, which has been signed now, there is $2.5 billion for high-speed rail that we will have. that is in addition to the $8 billion. that should be a signal to all of us that congress gets it. it is a priority for president obama, vice president biden, for the administration and i believe, based on the fact that there is $2.5 billion in appropriations, congress sees it as a net -- as a priority. but you need to understand there is not enough money in washington to do all that we need to do with high-speed rail. we need private dollars. that is why i gathered all of the people in the room that want to get into the high-speed rail building business, whether it is infrastructure or trains or whatever, because their
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investment in america will also help jumpstart opportunities. we need a good public-private partnership here. >> i am from utah and i just " a small poem that makes my point. it is not enough to stay in our hearts that we like a person for their ways, nor is it enough to honor a person as our confidence aborts mounts, it is going up and telling the person that counts. and do not leave a kind word and said in fear that to do so might leave them vein or cause them to lose their head. but reach out and tell them a job well done and see how their gratitude swells. your few kind words when you met with me last year has made it possible for us to open our airport in a timely manner and to get a decision approaching it. i want to thank you personally for that and for the good job
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that you do and for coming and representing and taking the time you have to answer questions and show your sincerity for the administration. thank you very much. >> thank you. wow! are we done? [applause] >> i have been told by the secretary's staff that he has to be out of here by 11:00. we're on the going to take the mayors who are on the floor right now and then make sure that your daughter because we are very respectful of your time. mayors, let's also be respectful. >> can we get a copy of your column? you obviously are example that there will be life after the mayoral --ship for you. [laughter] that was very low pay and if you have a copy i would love to get a cop -- averill lovely and if you have a copy i would love to get a copy from you.
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>> high-speed rail certain it would be a benefit to all of us, even in elkhart, indiana. i am also pleased to tell you and the president of the united states that the economic recovery is working in our community. it is working for us. >> thank you for that. >> i am a note taker and it was livability issues. getting away from high-speed rail for a moment, our problem when we talk about the ability, we have the second-largest -- talk about liveability, the second-largest real -- will way system in the u.s. we have lots and lots of trains whistles blowing and we have a large cost on the system. a lot of us -- a lot of the livability for us is getting over under the railroad.
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>> that is a very good point, and you will be happy to know that in the morning, i go to the house gym as a former member of the house. as long as i'm not a lobbyist and i pay my dues, i can go to the house of representatives gymnasium. and congressman joe donnelly spoke to me this morning about the tiger project. i just wanted you to know that. i have been spoken to about it twice today. [laughter] >> we love congressman donnelly. >> i know you do. i'm also happy to know that no date has a new coach, too. -- notre dame has a new coach, too. we also spoke about that. [laughter] >> jon de pre from racine, wisconsin. i came into a 17.5% unemployment in my city.
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is there any additional emphasis that will be placed on cities like ours that have extremely high unemployment rates? >> if you look at the guidance that we put on our website early on before we accept any proposals, this money is to put people to work. that is what our $48 billion is for. that is what the whole economic recovery package was about. we really took that seriously and we take seriously the idea that every dollar we spend, we know that people go to work. and in doing that, we dragged down unemployment. but most importantly, we give people hope and opportunity for a good job so they can take care of their families. our part of it has worked. the answer is, that is part of the criteria, to get people to work and to bring down unemployment in communities like racine and other communities around the country.
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>> we appreciate it, thank you. >> i'm with the mayor's office in meridian, mississippi. we wanted to thank you for the funding for our new interchange. that has allowed us to open up a new industrial park. we will be in -- investing in new jobs for decades to come. we wanted to thank you very much for that. >> thank you. you know, this is a point that john hick and lower made at the meeting we were at a week ago friday i have been emphasizing and the hold jobs thing, but it is bigger than that. these things can become an economic engine and they can spread and give opportunities and enhance other opportunities along the way, whether it is a road or a port or whatever. it is really, for the future. the jobs are important. that is why this bill was created, to put job -- people to work in america.
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but it is the long lasting effect of it, too. the when you see the tiger proposals that will be funded -- and certainly, the railway funding my idea is this, if you build it, they will come. i do not care what it is. but whether it is a road, bridge, a rail line, a light rail line, but systems, if you build it, they will come. and it will be an economic engine along these corridors. yes, sir? >> i am the mayor of schenectady, new york. as the birthplace of general electric and the former home of the american locomotive co., we were once known as the city that whites and hauls the world in the 1930's and 1940's. -- that lights and hauls the world in the 1930's and 1940's.
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we have a bid that includes high-speed court -- high-speed rail corridor in upstate new york, a very important link between albany and schenectady, and $9 million for a passenger rail station in downtown schenectady. >> you will be happy to know that there is no bigger advocate than louise slaughter, who i talked to every day -- not every day, but at least once a week. she is on this. she has been a big promoter. she has gotten the delegation from new york together and she has been a strong advocate. we are very aware of it. >> thank you. >> sam adams, mayor of this city of portland, oregon. i just want to thank you for doing in just a fourth -- short few months in terms of making the necessary forms to the federal funding programs for streetcar, which had been done up for years -- bumped up for
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years after being authorized. we thank you for listening. portland was not only the first to bring back the modern streetcars, but now we are selling them. united streetcar, we are offering good prices. >> it is a very good story. it is a very good story. the thing i found when i went to portland, the morning i borrowed over to the streetcar event -- the morning i went over to the street for event, i saw between 5100 people were writing their street bikes to work. this is an example of a livable community and it certainly is the streetcar capital o. i know you are proud of what your doing and we are proud of it, too. i also went to see the truck -- the portland trail blazers beat
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the lizard's the other day, too, but we were not too happy about that. yes, sir? >> i am from laredo, texas. i would like to invite you to laredo tex., the number one inland port. we crossed 10,000 trucks per day. i can assure you that i will prepare you the best mexican food -- [laughter] and i do not know about my fellow mayors, but i will cook it personally. as you can tell, i like to eat. and we will prepare you some barbecue as well. >> thank you. >> we would like to really respectfully invite you to laredo. it is one of the busiest inland ports in our nation. but we have concerns about waiting times for truckers. we would like for you to visit us because it is busy and things are getting better, but here we are between two countries. and we have the rio grande that
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unites us. >> thank you, we will do it. let me just say to all of you, thank you for serving. i know you have very hard jobs and i know it is difficult because people expect you to do so many things and you have so little resources to do it. i know you know this, but you have very, very strong, partnered -- strong and full partnership with president obama's administration. we will continue to do all the work that you want to do and we will do our best to try to be helpful to you. i look forward to seeing you this afternoon. thanks for coming to washington [applause] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010]
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>> this weekend on "the communicators," gordon smith on the fcc plan to expand abroad brand support from and what it might mean for broadcasters -- the broadband spectrum and what it might mean for broadcasters. >> wednesday, president obama delivers his first state of the union address to congress, laying out his vision for the future of the country and his plan to deal with issues such as unemployment, health care, and the wars in afghanistan and iraq. you can also listen to the president's address live on your iphone with the c-span radio out. -- application. >> the president is in ohio today hosting a town hall meeting in the rain. if we expect the focus to be on jobs, the economy and health care. we will have live coverage of that at the top of the are beginning at 2:00 p.m. eastern
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right here in c-span. philadelphia mayor michael mukhtar is in town attending the mayors' conference -- michael nutter is in town attending the mayors' conference. he joined us earlier today. -- the daughter is here to talk about the economy, other issues. -- nutter is here to talk about the economy, other issues. what is going on? guest: thank you for giving me the opportunity to be here. it is often the difference when an award is announced and the time that the city actually receives the dollars. there is often a gap, literally a couple of months between the award announced, until we get
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the dollars, and then we need to get it out the door. you will see more activity in 2010 than we did in 2009. host: what is your prediction for the number of jobs that can be created from the first round of stimulus? guest: literally, and the thousands. it is hard to completely calculate, because we are still in the process of getting announcements are receiving those dollars. there will be thousands of new jobs created, and many say. it will help us in philadelphia. the unemployment is currently 11.2%, and we are concerned in 2010 as the economy continues to struggle, that that may go up. host: the headline this morning, from the conference of mayors is that they are stressing a new round of stimulus money. how much are they asking for,
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how much would you like to see directly given to philadelphia? guest: as much as possible, of course, but even for the federal government, the pot is not among the dead. -- unlimited. we have to recognize the fact -- the president was cleared yesterday that more needs to be done. the federal agencies as well have their own budgets. there has been so much emphasis on certain organizations, hud, transportation, education, they also have their own budgets. the main issues that we are driving home is we need the money in ever cities now. i spoke directly to the president about targeting fiscal assistance. while we get the arra dollars,
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and they are helpful, we cannot use them to help our budget deficits. states can, cities cannot. even in the dollars that are allocated, we need to change the formula is as well as the percentages. in some cases, 80% went to the states, 20% to the cities. we have been pushing the issue that needs to be more balanced like a 50/50 split. cities can get that money out the door and provide jobs. 80% of our country's population lives in the city. and upper end of 80% of the country's gdp is created there. it only makes sense that you send the money where it economic activity takes place. host: what was the reaction from the president to your idea?
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guest: president obama is a tremendous leader. not only can he give you information but he is a great listener. i think he will transfer that message to all the cabinet secretaries and others in the administration. he is mindful that working shoulder to shoulder with america's mayors, that he will reach his goal of saving or creating 3,000,002 -- 3 million to 4 million jobs. he knows that cities are where the action is. he reaffirmed his commitment to the mayors of america in our conversation and exchange. i could not have been more excited to know that the president really does care. host: what kind of jobs have been created in philadelphia?
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guest: [laughter] we're going to be here for a little bit. everybody, take a seat, if you have a seat. [laughter] can everybody please give jodi a round of applause for the introduction? [applause] everybody is a special guest, but we got a few that i want to mention. first of all, obviously, you have got one of the finest governors in the country. please give him a round of applause. [applause]
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my former colleague, when he was in the senate, nobody fights harder for working people then sherrod brown. give him a round of applause. [applause] you've got a dynamo parair of members of house of representatives who are so committed to their districts and to the state. [applause] i have been having just a wonderful time here in town and your mayor has been a really nice person.
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[cheers] he and i chaired a birder over at smitty's. -- shared a burger over at smitty's. [applause] and someone i'm hugely impressed with because i'm at the so impressed with his leadership in this institution, dr. richard, your president at the college -- lorraine county community college. listen, it's great to be here. thank you so much for the great hospitality, the wonderful reception. look, it is just nice being out of washington. [laughter] i mean, there are some nice people in washington, but it can drive you crazy. [laughter] am i wrong, sherrod?
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[laughter] for two years, i had the privilege of travelling across this country and i had a chance to talk to people like you and to go to diners and to sit in barbershops and hear directly about the challenges all of you are facing in your lives, and the opportunities that you are taking advantage of, and all the things that we face together as a nation. and the single hardest thing -- people ask me this all the time -- the single hardest thing about being president is that it is harder for me to do that nowadays. it is harder to get out of the bubble. do not get me wrong, the white house is a wonderful place to work. you lived above the store, which means i have a very short commute. [laughter] i see my daughters before they go to school and i see them at night for dinner, even if i have to go back down to the office.
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that makes everything so much better. but the truth is, this job is a little confining. and that is frustrating. i cannot just go to the barbershop or sit in a diner. i cannot always visit people directly. this is part of the reason i have taken to the practice of reading 10 that -- 10 letters out of the 40,000 i get every night just so i can stay in touch and hear from you. but nothing beats a day when i can make an escape. i break out. and i appreciate the chance to come here and spend a day. before i came here, i visited the emc precision machining plant. i saw the great career job training program here at lorain county community college. obviously, i'm thrilled to be cured spending some time with you.
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>> i love you! >> i love you back. thank you. [cheers and applause] let's be honest. these are difficult and unsettling times. they are difficult times here, tough in ohio, tough all across the country. i walked into office a year ago in the middle of a raging economic storm that was wrecking devastation on your town and communities everywhere. we had to take some very difficult steps to deal with that mess. to stave off an even greater economic catastrophe. we had to stabilize the financial system, which given the role of the big banks in creating this mess was a pretty tough pill to swallow -- swallow. i knew it would be unpopular,
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and rightly so. but i also knew that if -- that we had to do it because if they went down, your local banks would have gone down and of the financial system had gone down, it would have taken more businesses and families with it. we would have been looking at a second great depression. so, my first months in office, we also had to save two of the three big auto makers from a liquidation bankruptcy. some people were not happy about that, either. i understand that. they felt like, if you are in a business and you make a bad decision, you want to reap the consequences just like any business would. the problem is if we let gm and chrysler said to go under, hundreds of thousands of americans would have been heard, not just those companies themselves. but auto suppliers -- would have been hurt, not just those companies themselves. auto suppliers and dealers all across this country. we said, if you are willing to
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take some painful steps to make yourself more competitive, we are willing to invest in your future. and earlier this week we learned that the auto industry plan to make an almost 3 million cars and trucks here in north america, which is up 69% from the first three months of last year. [applause] we also passed a recovery act to pull our economy back from the brink. there has been a lot of misunderstanding about this recovery act. and we were talking about this on the way over here. if you ask the average person, what was the stimulus package, they would say the bank bailout. let me just be clear here. the recovery act was cutting taxes for 95% of working families, 15 different tax cut for working families. seven different tax cuts for
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small businesses so they can start up and growth and higher. -- and grow and hire. part of that was giving with insurance rates and making cowger at a cheaper rate so people who lost their jobs could content -- cobra at cheaper rates so that people could keep their insurance when they lose their jobs. [applause] and we worked with the ohio budget so we would not have to lay off teachers and firefighters and police officers all across the state. and we made the largest investment in infrastructure since the creation of the highway system, putting americans to work to rebuild our roads, bridges, waterways, doing the work in america that needs to be done. and today, because we took those actions, the worst of this economic storm has passed. but families like yours and communities like this one are
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still reeling from the devastation that was left in its wake. one of the company's at emc where i went today, a wonderful company, passed on to generations. they have hung on with their precision manufacturing high value added. they can do things that cannot be shipped off to china because they are so attuned to their customers need to, but they had 77 employees and now they have 44. they want to start hiring back, but it is going to take a little time. the good news is, they are starting to see orders pick up a little bit. but it is tough. folks have seen jobs you thought forever with, and -- you thought would last for ever disappear. you have seen close -- you have seen businesses shut down. i've heard about how city government has just started to cut into bone, not just fat. you cannot go buy groceries like
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used to because it cuts into the county transit system. this all comes into -- comes after one of the toughest decade our class has faced in generations. even before the crisis hit, this is a decade where some folks may tons of money. but so many others were just peddling faster and faster, but stuck in the same place. sometimes slipping behind. the average income over the last decade actually fly blind, and in some cases went down. that was before the -- actually flat lined, and in some cases went down. that was before the crisis. as you see your biggest asset, its value -- the value of your home, falling, the cost of everything else is going up.
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and you have also faced the breakneck, unrelenting climb of cost for health care needs. here is the message i want you to take away. we will have lots of time for questions, but i want to make this absolutely clear. i did not run from -- run for president to turn away from these challenges. i did not run to take these challenges down the road. [applause] i ran for president to confront them once oand for all. [applause] i ran for this office to rebuild our economy so that it works not just for the fortunate few, but for everybody who was willing to work hard in this country. [applause] to create good jobs that can support a family, to get wages
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growing and incomes rising, to improve the quality of america's schools and lift up great committee colleges like this one so that people are constantly learning, constantly retrain for the jobs of the 21st century, to make things affordable for the children of working families. and yes, to deal with the problem of runaway health insurance costs that are breaking family budgets and breaking business budgets and wrecking our national budget. [applause] since this has been in the news a little bit this week -- [laughter] -- let me say a little bit something about health care. i had no allusions when i took this on that this was going to be hard -- no illusions when i took this on that this was going to be hard. seven presidents have tried it, seven congresses have tried this and all of them have failed.
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and i have a bunch of political advisers telling me this may not be the smartest thing to do. you have got a lot on your plate, the biggest economic crisis since the the brick -- the great depression, two wars, you know, you may not get a lot of cooperation. you will have a lot of push back from the insurance companies and the drug companies. it is complicated. do not do it. now, let me tell you why i did it. i knew that insurance premiums had more than doubled in the past decade. i knew that out of pocket expenses had skyrocketed. i knew that millions more people have lost their insurance. and i knew that because of the economic crisis, that was only going to get worse. when you lose 7 million jobs like we lost over the last two years, what you think happens to
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those folks with health insurance? what happens when there cobrthe runs out? i took this up because all of the families that cannot afford to pay averages rates, and i wanted to protect mothers and fathers and children from some the worst practices i've ever heard about in the insurance industry time and time again as i travelled this country. [applause] let me dispel this notion that somehow we were focused on that and as a consequence not focused on the economy. the first of all, all i think about is how we're going to create jobs in this area. all i think about is how to get banks lending again. i have been doing that the entire year. so, if folks like sheridan and
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marcey and betty -- so have folks like sherrod and marcey and betty. but i also know that it is part of the well and insecurity that middle-class families feel. -- the blow and insecurity that middle-class families feel. i have to amend that we had a bit of a buzz saw this week. [laughter] i also know that part of the reason is that this process was so long and so drawn out, this is just what happens in congress. i mean, it is just an ugly process. you are running headlong into special interests and armies of lobbyists and partisan politics that is aimed at exploiting fears instead of getting things done. then you have got ads that are schering the bid jesu-- scarine
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bejeezus out of everybody. . . >> this is not about me. this is about you. [applause] this is not about me.
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this is about you. i did not take this up to boost my poll numbers. you know the way to boost your poll numbers? cannot do anything. -- to not do anything. that is the way to do it. i would have a real high poll numbers. all of washington would say, "what a genius." [laughter] i did not take this on to score political points. i know there are some folks who think that if obama loses, we win. but you know what? i think that i win when you win. [applause] that is how i think about her it. -- about it. so if i was trying to take the path of least resistance, i
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would have done something a lot easier. but i am trying to solve the problems of folks here in ohio and across the country face every day. i will not walk away just because this is hard. we are going to keep on working to get this done, with democrats, i hope with republicans, anybody who is willing to step up. i'm not going to watch more people get crushed by costs or did not care that they need by insurance company bureaucrats, i will not have insurance companies click their heels and watch costs skyrocket because there is no control on what they do. so long as i have the privilege of serving as president, i will not stop fighting for you. i will take my lumps, but i
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will -- [applause] i will not stop fighting for an economy where hard work is rewarded, i will not stop fighting to make sure there is accountability in our financial system. i'm not going to stop fighting until we have jobs for everybody. that is why i am calling on congress to pass a jobs bill to support more americans by building up our recovery act and putting more americans back to work rebuilding roads and railways, providing tax breaks to small businesses for hiring people, offer families incentives to make their homes more energy efficient, saving them money while creating jobs. that is why we enacted initiatives that are beginning to give rise to clean energy economy people building winter
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bites and solar panels -- they would tell you that their industry was about to collapse. now you are seeing that this state has received more funds than just about anybody in order to build on that clean energy economy, new cutting edge of wind turbines and batteries that are going into energy efficient cars. almost 25 percent of the investment went into plants right here that is helping to produce the car batteries of the future. that is what we are going to keep on doing for the rest of 2010 and 2011 and 2012 until we of got the country working again. [applause] so long as i am president, i
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will never stop fighting for policies that restore home values, to redeem investments that folks have made. to see some of those values returned in some places, we will have to do more this year to make sure that banks are responsive to folks who are working hard and paying their mortgage. i am not going to stop fighting to give our kids the best education possible -- [applause] to take the tens of billions of dollars that we pay banks to act as middlemen on student loans and invest that money in students who actually need it. we don't need the middlemen to cut them out. -- we don't need the middle men. cut them out. i will not stop fighting to give every american a fair shake. the very first bill i signed into law was the lily ledbetter
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act, equal pay for equal work by men and women alike, especially when the families need two paychecks to survive. so long as i am president, i won't stop fighting to protect you from the kind of deceptive practices we have seen from some in the financial sector. that is why i signed a credit card bill of rights into law to protect you from suppliers charges, retroactive rate hikes, and other unfair rules. that is why i'm fighting for a consumer financial protection agency to protect you against those it an overdraft fees that can make the single atm withdrawal cost $30. [applause] i won't stop fighting to open up government. this is hard to do, because we don't control every branch, but we of put in place the toughest ethics laws and toughest
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transparency rules of any administration in history -- in history. by the way, this is the first administration since the founding of the country where all of you can find out who visits the white house. first time in history. that is just one example of how we are trying to constantly open up process. so long as i'm president, i will not stop fighting to stop waste and abuse and washington, to eliminate what we don't need and pay for what we do, to rein in the exploding deficits we have been accumulating not just for the last year, but for the last 10. [applause] and i am going to keep on fighting for real, meaningful health insurance reform. we expanded the children's
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health insurance program to include 4 million kids. we already did that. but we're also going to fight to hold the insurance industry accountable, to bring more civilian security -- civilians into our health-care system, and i want to make sure people who don't have health care now can get some. it is shameful that we don't do that. these are some of fights that we have had and i can assure you that there will be more fights ahead. and i'm not going to win every round. we are having a fight right now, because i want to charge wall street a modest fee to be paid taxpayers in full for saving their skins in a time of need. we want our money back. [applause] we want our money back. [applause] and we are going to get your money back, every dime, each and
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every dime. it is going to be a fight. you watch. i guarantee you, when we start on a financial regulatory reform, trying to change the rules to prevent what has caused so much heartache all across the country, there are people who were going to say, "why is he meddling in the financial industry? it is another example of obama being a big government." no, i just want to have rules in place so that when these guys make dumb decisions, you don't end up footing the bill. [applause] i don't mind having that fight. i said, to means to be able to travel this country and how much it means to be here. -- how much it means to be able to travel this country and how
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much it means to be here. that is true more than ever. it is easy to get a pretty war to view of things in washington. but then you start -- pretty warped view of things in washington. but then you start talking to guys creating products all across the country, you go into diners and meat folks who are raising their kids -- and meet folks who are raising the kids and working hard and trying to keep things together. i am reminded of the strength and resilience and perseverance of the american people. i'm reminded of the fundamental character of the americans that i'm so privileged to serve. it is that character that has borne our nation through the roughest seas a lot rougher than the ones we're going through right now. that is the character that will take us through this storm to better days ahead. i am confident of that. because if you could i am
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grateful to all of you for taking the time to be here today. -- because of you. i am grateful to all of you for taking the time to be here today. thank you. [applause] all right. let's take some questions. everybody sit down. sit back down. all right. i'm just going to call on people. we are going to do girl, boy, girl, boy. [laughter] so that there is no accusations of bias. we will try to get as many questions in as we can, all right? this young lady back here. there should be a microphone -- wait for the microphone so everybody can hear you. i'm sorry. that is okay to i will call on you next.
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-- that's ok. i will call when you next. one of you ask a question. [laughter] >> thank you mr. president. it's an honor to be here today. i work here in lcc's financial- services office. i'm proud of fining pathways to students to attend college. we greatly appreciate the increase in people grant -- in the pell grant, which allows students to access college education. [applause] increased -- as college costs continues to rise. my question is will your administration support continued increases to the pell grant? >> the answer is yes. i want everybody to understand that we made -- this was with
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the help of members of congress who are here -- made enormous investments in higher education making sure that young people can afford to go to great institutions like this. we significantly increased the level of each pell grant, and put in more money so that we could have more pell grants. i mentioned during my formal remarks that a lot of the banks and financial institutions are serving as middlemen in the financial aid process, and they take out several billion dollars' worth of profits from that. it turns out that it can be administered in such a way where the loans go directly to the students. if you do that, you are saving several billion dollars that can then be put back into the system. we want to get finalized, we want to get that done. that would be an enormous boost.
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one thing i have to say, though -- even as we put more money into the student loan program, we are also trying to reach out to university presidents, administrators, to figure out how can we reduce the inflation in higher education. the fact is that the only thing that has gone up faster in cost than health care is guess what? highridge occasion. the problem -- higher education. the problem is if we're not thinking up ways to curb inflation, even if we put more money in, what the money is buying becomes less and less. trying to find creative ways for universities to do more with less is going to be important in fairness to universities and colleges, part of the reason that they have been having to jack up their cost is because
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they need more support from the state. the state budgets have gotten into a whole, and it became harder, and so they have to make it up in the tuition side. nevertheless, results is the general costs of operating has gone up in ways that i think we can improve. we are going to be working on that as well. all right? ok, i've got to call on a gentleman, that i have got to go back to you, because i call on you and i feel bad. this man in the time. you look sharp. [laughter] >> mr. president, thank you. it is an honor to stand before you. earlier in your message, you mentioned the transit system. obviously, we do need help and we are in dire need to have some assistance there, but what i did hear was your interest in our steel mill. -- what i did not hear was your interest in our steel mill. that is a big part of our community and we need held there as well. i just wonder where washington's stance on the steel mill. >> i was talking to your mayor
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about this. obviously, he is a big advocate of manufacturing in the region. i do not have all the details and terms of what is happening at the steel mill at this moment. but what we have done is set up an office in the white house just focus on manufacturing, because it is my view that america has got to make things. now, we are not going to make -- [applause] i want to be honest -- not all the manufacturing jobs that have gone are going to come back if people tell you they are, that has just -- that is just not true. a lot of that has moved to places where the wages are just a much lower. i know that some people say that we just set up tariffs so that folks can not ship them in, but these days, the global economy is so interconnected that that is just not a practical solution. the solution is to find -- i don't know the details of the steel mills here, but i know that the ones that have been
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successful, they do what emc is doing as well, which is that you find the high-end market, the market that involves a lot of technology specialization, train workers, quick turnaround, so that the customers feel like they are getting something special and different. that is how you compete. that is something that a steel mill in china or brazil cannot do. they cannot compete with you being on the spot working closely with customers. finding ways to develop special ty steel and so forth is going to be key to our manufacturing office will be working with folks here in town to see what we can do. all right? thank you. all right, back to this young lady here. >> first, i want to start by saying that i am very grateful to be here, to meet you in person.
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i absolutely support you and back you. i feel like rum was not built in, and i know that everybody -- rome was not built in a day, i know that everybody is in patient come up with a time, things can be turned around, and i believe that your intentions are really hon. in that. >> i appreciate that. >> i am a single mother of three and i have issues that are important to me. one is that i have a 3-year-old who just turned 3 who got lead poisoning last year and almost died. i called everyone, including the epa of ohio, and i cannot seem to get any response to this. >> well, guess what? i guarantee you that somebody from the epa is going to call you in about -- [laughter] in about five minutes -- [applause]
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before you sit down, there is going to be a phone call from the epa. all joking aside, i know you have the same question, but i want to focus on this -- lead poisoning, a lot of it from lead paint from older homes, all across the country in the midwest, is something that we have to be more aggressive on. this is something that i worked on when i was a u.s. senator, when i was as state senator. i am working on it as president, and i will find out directly from them how they can help not only with your particular situation, but what we're doing in this area in terms of lead. >> the second big i want to address to you is the unfair labor laws they seem to have i some of these industries, as far
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as discrimination and different issues about nature that don't seem to get addressed by the bigger companies. i have actually worked for ford -- i'm a full-time student here now, gratefully. even when i was working there, and my whole family has actually come up through ford, there is a lot of very unjust situations that come about, but no attorneys will deal with it, and no one will talk about it, and it is really pushed under the rug. i do all might -- do owe my -- what i have now, at 24, because it was bread and butter for my family, but at the st. -- what i have now, to ford, because it was bread and butter from a family, but at the same time, is not right for my family to suffer. >> one of the things my administration has been able to do over the last year that does not cost money is " in forcing books on -- and forcing law --
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enforcing laws on the books already. we are so past the point where it should be debatable that women get paid the same as men for doing the same job. [applause] it is something that -- especially because there was a study released just last week showing that increasingly, wives are making more than husbands in some circumstances, and whoever is making more, you have got to have two paychecks. this is not just a feminist issue -- sometimes guys say, "what should i care about --" let me tell you something. your wife is getting paid fairly, therefore your family is
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getting paid fairly. i want my daughter to be treated the same way as your son. that is something we should not be arguing about anymore. [applause] all right. the gentleman right back there. >> my name is james, and i'm an inventor. i hold u.s. patent no. 7,000,397731. >> ok. >> before i ask my question, i would like to make a sales pitch. if you could use my patent in your next election, you could make a ton of money worldwide. if you can use it, i can use it and build a multimillion-dollar business in ohio. >> ok, we will take a look at it. >> it has to do with international patent rights.
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with all the free trade and trade barriers falling, it is hard for an individual like me, with a global patents, to file over the world and get protection everywhere. and having to go overseas to fight infringement. if you are going to drop trade barriers, maybe you can extend my patent rights to foreign countries. >> this is a great question and a huge problem to our competitive advantage all over the world will be with people like this to use the mice to create great products and services, -- use their minds to create great products and services, but that only helps us and helps you build a multimillion-dollar company if somebody cannot just steal the idea and suddenly start making it in indonesia or malaysia or bangladesh with a very cheap
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workers. one of the problems that we have had is insufficient protection for intellectual property rights. that is true in china, it is true for everything from bootleg dvd's to very sophisticated software. there is nothing wrong other people -- nothing wrong with other people using our technology but we just want to make sure it is licensed and you get paid. i have given instructions to might trade officers, and we actually highlight this at the highest levels of foreign policy, that these are issues that have to be addressed, because that is part of the reciprocity of making our markets open. when i met with the president of china, this is a topic that, at dinner, i directly brought up with him.
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as you point out, it has got to be sustained. a lot of times they will say, yes, yes, yes, but then there is no enforcement on their end. one of the things we're also doing is using our export arm of the u.s. government to halt work with medium-sized businesses and small does -- help work with medium-size businesses and small businesses to protect their part of this area. we need to boost exports. we just completed a decade where we were told it did not matter -- you just keep on importing and buying stuff from other countries, max out your credit card, and everything is going to be ok. and for a lot of people, the economy seems to be growing, but it is built on a house of cards. that is what we now know. that is why if we are going to have a successful manufacturing
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sector, we have got to have successful exports. when i went to take this trip to china, and took this trip to asia, a lot of people said, "what is he going to asia? he is traveling overseas to much. he's to be coming back, talking about jobs -- he needs to be coming back and talking about jobs." i'm there because that is how we are going to find those jobs, but to increase exports to those countries. if we increase exports, our share of exports by just 1%, the would need hundreds of thousands of jobs in the united states. -- that would mean hundreds of thousand of jobs in the united states. 5%, maybe a million jobs, well paying jobs. we have to pry those markets open and intellectual property is part of that. great question. there is a woman -- you guys just put down your hands. [laughter]
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ok, this young lady right in front. we have got a microphone over here. you know, i would give it to you if i could reach. go ahead. >> my name is joanne. i'm 83 years old. i know i don't look it. >> you don't. [laughter] you look great. >> thank you. i'm very concerned about social security. i think there is a few of us here who are probably living on that. i understand that congress has given themselves a raise but has denied us cola for possibly the next year -- next three years after it at the time of the h1n1 thing, people over 65 were not given the right to have the shot.
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for some reason, this crisis was left on our senior backs. what can we do about it? >> let me address all three of your issues, because you are raising three separate issues. first is how do we make sure that social security is sustainable over the long term? social security is one of our entitlement programs that come out for now, is stable but will not be if we don't make some changes. here is the good news -- compared to medicare, social security is in reasonably good shape, with a relatively small adjustments, you can have a solvent for a long time to the social security is going to be there. i know people are concerned about it. social security we can fix. in terms of the cola, which stands for cost-of-living allowance -- it is put in place
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to make sure that social security is keeping up with inflation. here is the problem -- this past year, because of the severity of the recession, we did on that inflation, we had deflation. -- we did not have inflation, we had deflationary prices actually fell last year. as a consequence, seniors were not eligible for a cost-of- living adjustment because prices did not go up in the aggregate. that does not mean that individual folks were not being pinched by higher heating prices or what have you, but on average, prices went down. here is what we did -- working with these key members of congress here, we did vote to provide aid to order to the dollar -- provide the $250 one-
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time payment to seniors, which when he factored in, amounted to 1.8%, almost the equivalent of color, even though it was not actually collected -- equivalent of cola. even though it was not actually cola. we did not forget the years. we never forget seniors, because the vote in very high rates. [laughter] the third point he made had to do with the h1n1 virus -- third point you made had to do with the h1n1 virus. the reason that seniors were not prioritized was, unlike the seasonal flu shot, h1n1 was the deadliest in young people, particularly children. because the virus came up fairly late in the timeframe for preparing flu shots, we had a
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limited number of vaccines, and we had to decide who gets the vaccines first. by the way, let me just a little tsa here. anybody who has not gotten an h1n1 shot with the seasonal flu, i would still advise you to get it, because historically there are two ways of this. -- two waves of this. make sure your kids have gotten it. there is a significantly higher number of children killed with h1n1 than those who just that the seasonal flu. it is just a small fraction. i do want to make everybody afraid. but it is more serious than the normal seasonal flu. what is not that seniors were neglected here. what happened was that according to the science, the cdc, it was determined that we had to go to the most of vulnerable group the quickest, and that was children, particularly those who had
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underlying neurological disorders or immunity disorders. all right? we have not forgotten about you. and you don't look 83. ok, this young man has been standing up for quite a long time. >> mr. president, my name is jordan boundary can you hear me? -- jordan brown. can you hear me? >> yes. give him the mike. >> i don't have a question, but i do want to know if i am able to shake your hand. >> yes, if someone lets you do, i will give you a hanchett. -- lets you through, i will give you a handshake. there is another young man here, so i will call on him. >> i am 29 years old and i have never had a job in my life. i went to jail when i was younger and it is hard to get a job. is there anyone who will hire folks with felonies?
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i'm 29. [applause] also, i am appalled, and i wrote a problem for you -- i am a poet, and i wrote a poem for you. >> just give me the poem. first of all, it is never too late. [applause] one of these gentlemen here will end of this -- will handle thi -- will hand this poem to me. i will not read from the stage, but i will definitely think about it. look, i'm proud of the fact that you are bringing this up. there are people who have made mistakes, practically when they are young, -- particularly when they are young, and it is in all of our interest to help them redeem themselves and get on the
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street path. i don't blame employers, august, for being nervous about hiring some -- but the i don't blame -- i don't blame employers, obviously, for being nervous about hiring somebody who has been arrested. they have a lot applicants for every single job and that is a question they have in their minds. on the other hand, one of the great things about america is that we give people second chances. and so what we have tried to do -- and i want to say, this has been a bipartisan effort, when i was in the senate, working with sam brownback, my vice president joe biden, passing a second chance act that helps fund programs that help the reintegration of ex-felons. sometimes people say that that is just coddling people. no, you reduce the recidivism rate, they paid taxes, it ends up being smart for taxpayers to
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do i don't know what particular program there is in this county, but i promise you i will find that and we will see if we can get you hooked up with one of them. all right? ok. [applause] right here. no, no, right here. go ahead. >> mr. president, my name is doris, and i started a school -- >> what kind of school? >> truck driving school. >> cross driving school? >> truck driving school. at that time, there was enough
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money to train these people. in the past few months, we have had a number of people on a daily basis coming into our school unemployed. there are no training funds for truck driver training. i want to know why that has changed. >> well, the recovery act but a huge amount of money into retraining. we are preparing for next year's budget, and i know that we have actually allocated additional money for retraining. i don't know specifically what is happening and that would cause the dollars to dry up with respect to truck driving schools. let me see if i can find out and i will have one of my staff get your card, and maybe we can provide you some information. >> thank you very -- >> here is the broader point,
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though. the story of retraining is so important. when i went to the precision toolmaking place, there was a group of guys, and one guy who said i should call him and gerry the mechanic -- call him jerry the mechanic. he shakes my hand, and he and his buddy were talking about -- i said, how long were you working here? he said 20 years. i noticed that a lot of the equipment was digital in fancy instead of the old machines on the other side of the building to i said, did you guys have to get additional training for this? he said, "we used to work in this old plant, and we got laid off, and we came here to lorain community college and took a six-month, 12-hour-a-day course that completely retrain us, and
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that is what got us these new jobs, and we've been working over a decade at these new jobs." [applause] here is the thing -- he's go -- these guys were not playing, as far as i know, unless the mayor is a lot slicker than i think. [laughter] but these guys did point out that it was jtpa -- jppa funds, job training funds for the federal government and the state all worked together to make sure that people have access to the funds. during that time, they were still working eight hours a day. they had found low-paying jobs just to pay the rent while there were getting retrained. i said, "ok, you are working eight hours and going to class -- when you sleep?"
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"in between class and taking it shift." they did this for six months. i tell this story -- i want to emphasize how important the college system is in making the work force prepared for the 21st century. i make the point because, number two, it only works if the government is providing some help for people to buy next their education, their return -- to finance their education, their retraining. point number three, even if you have a great community college and the financing, you also got to wanted. you also got to wanted to give these guys -- you have also got to want it to. think of these guys. doing that for six months. because there were a high rate -- hungry and confident about
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their abilities to transfer their old skills to new skills, they have been able ever since to support their families. that is a partnership between the government, the free market, businesses, individuals. that is what we're trying to forge. that is why i get so frustrated when we have these ideological debates in washington where people start saying how, "obama is just trying to put in place big government." what big government have we been trying to perpetrate here? we are trying to fund the guys who want to go to truck driving school -- we want to make sure that they have money to get trained for the job in the private sector. when we passed the recovery act, these are not a bunch of government jobs. these are jobs that private
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contractors contact with the state or the city of the county to build roads and highways, the same way we build the interstate highway system and intercontinental railroad system. i understand how people have become mistrustful of government. we don't need big government. we need smart government that works and in iraq's -- and interacts with the private sector to create opportunity for ordinary people. cannot be a constant ideological argument. people need help. we need to provide them a helping hand. [applause] that is what we stand for. all right. i've got time for only, unfortunately, one more question. i have been having a great time, but it is the man's turn here. is that you? this is our wringer.
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-- a ringer. this is a friend of mine. people will say, opened what he called on a friend of his." i will talk to you on the side here. go ahead, this gentleman here. >> thank you for taking my question, thank you for coming. i'm a 52-year-old businessman from akron, ohio, i want to create 12,000 jobs, i spent my own money to do due diligence, traveled to china by german- designed turbine, and they're producing it in china. i have rights in north america, primarily the great lakes. two things that i'm challenged by, having a difficult time raising money. i am not asking for a handout. all i'm asking is to loan the money every dollar i will pay back. secondly, i am willing to risk millions, 99% of my net worth.
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the second thing is that ge has a patente -- i believe in patents -- i listened to this man here and i appreciate what he is going through -- but ge inherited this from enron and they have built a wall. they call it a royalty, but it is really a gate to keep people out. i have talked to governor strickland, talked to sharon brown -- to sherrod brown. i want to bring this to the united states and bring in jobs. this is not about money for me. this is about creating jobs. aiken feel for that gentleman to -- i can feel for that
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gentleman who wants to work. is there any federal programs -- i just want to borrow money to create a factory in create these jobs. >> obviously, i do not know about the particular situation, so i would just be generally about it. if you want to get one of -- my team did your -- if you want to get one of my team -- give your card and it will follow with you -- one of the things we have seen with the financial crisis is that banks are still not lending to small businesses in after i-- not lending to small businesses in half. the mayor and i talked about this, the business owners i've talked to will confirm this. if you ask what -- if you ask the banks why, they will say, "is a combination of in some cases demand really is down,
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businesses don't have as many customers as they used to, revenues are down and they don't want to lend." but in some cases, what you have got is very profitable businesses that are ready to go and ready to invest and have a proven track record, and the banks feel as though regulators are looking over their shoulder and discouraging them from landing. -- lending. what i said to treasury secretary geithner and others is that we cannot meddle with independent regulators. their job is to stay apart from politics and make sure that banking system is sound. but there should be a discussion about whether or not we had seen the pendulum swing too far, where it used to be that would just let anybody anything, then they lost all of this money, now they wan -- won't lend people with good credit anything.
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that is not good for the economy. what we have tried to do is fill some of these gaps in the meantime. for example, a small business lending through the fda has gone up. we have been waiving fees and increasing guarantees. we are trying to streamline the process for sba loans, because right now there is just too much paperwork. it is typical government not having caught up with the drought 21st century. you cannot have a 50-pound application form. after a while, it just is not work in some cases. we are trying to do all those things could with respect to patents, i don't know the particular situation. it is important that we protect, internationally, intellectual property. it is also important to have a patent system that encourages innovation but does not just lock in big monopolies that
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prevent new people from bringing new products into the system. the worst offender of this problem was actually the drug companies. -- they are they will try to lock in their patents for as long as they can to prevent and generics -- prevent generics from coming into the market. sometimes the drug company will redesigned as a that is a cat instead of a bill -- redesign it so that it is a caplet instead of a pill. that is something we have to change. i do not know if that applies to your situation. but we need a system that encourages innovation. now, i am out of time, but i want to say one last thing.
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first of all, because there has been so much attention focused on this health care issue this week, i just want to emphasize not the midst, but the reality of what -- not the myths, but the reality of both -- what both the house and senate bill would try to accomplish. it is simple. number one, for those of you who have health insurance, we are trying to get in place reform that makes sure you are getting your money's worth for the insurance that you pay for. that means, for example, that they cannot impose a lifetime cap, or you find that you get sick and there is fine print in there that says you are not completely covered. we are trying to make sure that there is a cap on out-of-pocket expenses, so that you do not find out when you read the fine
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print that you have to pay a huge amount that you thought you were covered for. we are trying to make sure that if you have a pre-existing condition, you can actually still get health insurance. there is a lot of people who have been banned from getting health insurance because of pre- existing conditions. one of the provisions -- one of the reforms we want is to make sure that your 26- 427-year-old, up until that age, can -- 26- or 27-year-old, up until that age, can stay on your insurance. once they get out of college, they can stay on the that insurance until they get a stable job. some people want to pass that and forget everything else. here is the problem -- let's take the example of a pre- existing conditions. we cannot prohibit insurance
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companies from preventing people with pre-existing conditions getting insurance unless everybody essentially as insurance. -- essentially has insurance. otherwise, what happened is that people would not get insurance until they are sick, and then they would buy insurance and they could not be prohibited. that would drive everybody else's premiums up. a lot of the insurance reforms are connected to other things we have to do to make sure that everybody has some access to coverage. the second thing we have been trying to do is make sure we are setting up an exchange, which is just a big pool, so that people, individuals who are self- employed or small business owners, and especially enjoyed a big pool of millions of people across the country, which means that when you go to negotiate with your insurance company, you have the purchasing power of a ford or gm or wal-mart or xerox
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or the federal employees. that is why federal employees have good insurance and county employees and state employees have good insurance, because they are part of this big pool. our attitude is can we make sure that everybody is part of a big pool, to drive down costs? that is the second thing we are trying to do. the third thing we are trying to do is reduce costs overall, because of the system -- how many of you, when you go into the doctor's office, you fill out a form, get a checkup, fill out another form, somebody asks you for the for you just fell out that the doctor fills out a form and you have to take it to a pharmacist, the pharmacist cannot read the doctor's -- this the only industry in the country that still does that. it still operates on paper systems, still orders all kinds of all unnecessary tests.
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a lot of times i go to the doctor and i just do what i am told i don't know what he is doing. i don't know whether this test was necessary, or whether we could have had the test that i took six months ago e-mailed to the doctors said that i would not have to take another test and pay for another test. there are all of these methods of trying to reduce costs. that is what we have been trying to do. i guess what is a, as i said in my opening remarks, -- i just want to say, as i said in my opening remarks, that the process has been less than pretty. when you are dealing with 535 members of congress, it will be a somewhat ugly process, not necessarily because any individual member of congress is trying to do something wrong. it is just that they may have different ideas, different interests, have a particular issue of the hospital in their
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district that they want to make sure that they can get dealt with, and this may be the best vehicle for doing it. they are looking out for their constituents a lot of times. but when you put it all together, it looks like this monstrosity. and make people fearful, and it makes people afraid, and start thinking, you know what, this looks like something that is going to cost me tax dollars, and i already have insurance, so why should i support this? i just want to be clear that there are things that have to get done. this is our best chance to do it. we cannot keep on putting this off. even if you have got health insurance right now, look at what is happening with your premiums, and look at the trend. it is going to gobble up more and more of your paycheck. the vast chunk of you folks here
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who have heard your employers say that you have to pick up more deductibles -- to cut more of your payments and in terms of higher deductibles or co- payments. some say that we just cannot afford health insurance at all. that is going to happen to more and more people. you asked about social security. let me talk about medicare. medicare will be broken in eight years if we do nothing. right now we give about $17 billion in subsidies to insurance companies through the medicare system. your tax dollars. but when we try to eliminate them, suddenly there are ads on tv -- "obama is trying to cut medicare." i'd get all these seniors are writing letters -- "what are you trying to cut medicare benefits?"
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i am not try to cut medicare benefits. i am trying to stop paying these insurance companies all this money so that we can give you a more stable program. [applause] the point is this -- not of the big issues that we face in this country are simple. everybody wants to act like it is simple. everybody wants to say that they can be done easily. but they are complicated, they are tough. the health-care system is a big, complicated system, and doing it right is hard. energy -- if we want to be energy independent, i am for more oil production, i am for new forms of energy, time for a safe nuclear energy. i'm not ideological about this.
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but we also have to acknowledge that if we are going to actually have an energy independent economy, we have to make some changes. we cannot just keep on doing business the same way. that is going to be a big, complicated discussion. we cannot shy away from it, though. we cannot sort of suddenly say to ourselves, america or congress cannot do big things, that we should only do the things that are non- controversial, we should only do the stuff that is safe. if that is what happens, then we are not going to meet the challenges of the 21st century. that is not who we are, that is not how we use to operate, and that is not how i intend to operate going forward. we are going to take these big things on, and i am going to do it and you are going to do it because you know we want to be a better america for our children
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and grandchildren, and that does not mean standing still, it means marching forward to i want to march forward with you, i want to work with you, i want to fight with you, i hope you are willing to stand by me even in these tough times, because i believe in a brighter future for america. thank everybody. god bless you. -- thank you, everybody. god bless you. ♪
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>> president obama, wrapping up at town hall meeting in ohio. if you missed any of this event, we will show it again in its entirety at 8:00 p.m. eastern here on c-span.
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. .
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♪ ♪ ["starts and stripes forever]
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♪ ♪ ["stars and stripes forever] ♪
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♪ >> president obama is wrapping up a town hall meeting in ohio. we will show the event began in its entirety starting at 8:00 p.m. eastern here on c-span.
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♪ ñrw3 >> wednesday, president obama's
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delivers his first state of the in -- his first state of the union address to congress. he will deal with health care and the war's in iraq and afghanistan. our coverage will start at 8:00 p.m. on c-span. you can also listen to it on the iphone with the c-span radio app. >> over three and a $15 billion has been committed. 1 and $67 billion has been paid out as of january. we have been keeping track of the stimulus money for you. go to for more information. how is the economic stimulus
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affecting the states? that was one of the questions from today's "washington journal." this next segment is about half an hour. >> mayor scott smith joins us from the hilton hotel in washington, d.c. he is one of many mayors there were here this week to meet with the president to talk about the economy and jobs. washington, d.c. i want to begin with this headline from "the new york times," conference of mayors stressed the need of new grounds for stimulus money. are you looking for another round of stimulus money? guest: i think any city would like to have it there is the mill is money available, pointed their way. mares are the same regardless of party. if there is going to be stimulus, we believe the cities of the best place to put that stimulus money to work. host: how much money has mesa, arizona, received thus far from
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the first round of stimulus funds? guest: directly and indirectly we actually put in to play a little over $70 million in the city on a variety of projects from a variety of sources. host: how many jobs have been created or saved? guest: that is one thing that is sort of hard to tell. we actually haven't done any talent on the exact job count. we are more interested on a types of projects. we do know when you are building things and you have programs that are funded, that there aren't saved and jobs created. a host of what are some of the accomplished -- host: what are some of the accomplishments to to the stimulus money? he guest: we participated in a program that will put 25 new police officers on the street. we've also got several street construction projects and some rapid transit construction projects that have come into our
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city. in addition, we have taken advantage of some financing programs through the finance america, which is stimulus related, that help us save $12 million in finance costs. that $12 million came right out of our general fund which means we can keep the money in their to keep from laying off people. mesa, arizona, over the last year and have had either laid off or through attrition over 10% of our city employees. so, $12 million, for example, in finance savings is a significant number. host: you talk about the number of people get laid off. your unemployment is around 8%, according to november 2009 figures. how has it impacted the bottom line of city revenue? guest: the hit has been horrendous din in mesa we are very much sales tax based.
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sales taxes are down double digits. in some months, 20%. our revenue base had been down between 15%, to 20%. when you have unemployment, those who don't have any money obviously don't spend it. the other affected is the chilling affect it has on those who do have money. we found confidence was so low among our citizens that those who do not have money simply are not spending what they used to. that goes right to our bottom line because we simply don't collect the sales tax we used to. host: how are you meeting basic needs? guest: and little over a year ago we decided, number one, this is not going to be a temporary situation. we put in place several measures to reform our government, restructured we eliminated departments, cross trained, did things and hope that we could basically changed the way we did business. we want simply going to attack this problem by cutting people,
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because that didn't change the dynamic. we have to deliver basic services but with fewer resources. we have been fairly successful in doing that but we are stretched so thin right now that it is really a challenge to keep basic service is going. and some areas of the city, those services simply don't exist to anymore. host: if you are going to get another round of aid from the government, how do you want to deliver directly to the cities? guest: of right now we take advantage of really the two programs that i think really fund things in a most efficient manner, and that is through grants. we have community development block grants, energy grants, things in transportation like the tiger program. in the cities we find these grants are the most effective way and the most efficient way to get money into the economy quickly. they are competitive, which means they go to the best programs. there are standards and
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accountability. and there is a way that that money can be put directly into the economy without a whole lot of administrative costs. since the city is aware the economic action are in this country, well over 80% of the gross domestic product comes from cities and towns. guest: host: first call, maryland on the independent line. guest: i would like for everyone to think about this. what if the corporation is a foreign corporation? a corporation that works for the betterment of china and other such countries that don't believe that exactly the way we do here in this democracy? host: the caller is talking about the topic of our previous
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segment, the supreme good ruling yesterday. do you have any thoughts on how it would impact your city heat and statewide races in your state? guest: in arizona on the state level we have publicly financed campaigns and on the city level the donations are very, very limited. i could raise, like, $400 per individual. obviously if you put corporations and labor unions and big money things in there, it is obviously a game changer. i think the question is -- and this caller brings up an interesting point -- who is behind the donation? i know we have disclosure rules and laws, and i think that is really the key is that can we truly have a disclosure program that really gets to the bottom of who is behind this donation. i think that is what would concern me the most. host: does that mean you are against the court ruling? guest: i think it leaves
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questions unanswered. i think if we have full disclosure and we can truly understand where money is coming from, things will tend to even out. we talked about maybe a labor union or big corporation would come in and somehow tipped the balance, but if voters understand it is purely this labor union or the corporation and you understand the interest, i think the voters will have a way of evening the score and it could actually but -- worked against the candidate. the question is can you truly have those disclosure rules that can give the voters the information they need. i am not sure how you do that when you have corporations and you have labor unions that are inanimate objects in many ways and you just don't know who is behind them. host: little rock, arkansas. on the republican line. caller: good morning, greta. i want to say to mr. smith that i think you are a rhino, a good
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example of being a republican in name only. i have been listening to you say that you are against the supreme court ruling on thursday, that you are in favor of taking more stimulus money and any true conservative -- the obama stimulus package has done nothing but create more huge deficits on our economy. so, i think that you should do a serious identity checks because i don't think that you are a true conservative. host: mayor smith? guest: in mesa, we look at things like federal money very carefully. one thing we tend to forget is
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that if federal money works through the regular appropriation process, if our congress approves things -- and they are competitive grants -- that is taxpayer money going back to washington. even as a conservative, i believe that if my citizens are paying taxes, it is part of my duty to make sure that some of those taxes or their fair share of those taxes come back to our community. i think it would be irresponsible for me to say, listen, for ideological reasons i oppose the federal government putting money back into communities. the fact of the matter is congress has approved it. a fact of the matter is, i am ås)eo7bio7@ @ ie cs@ guest: it is my responsibility to bring the money to the people that is out there. most mayors are neither
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republican or democrat. at the end of the day, we are pragmatists. that is where the rubber meets the road. our decisions have immediate implications. we collect the garbage. we cannot borrow money. we cannot pretend to have money. when our services are threatened, and there are issues and programs out there, we will look at those to see if they can help our community. in mesa, we're very selective about the type of federal programs we go after. we understand that there are strings attached. we do not want to have the federal government telling us what to do. we're very selective in what we go after. very selective, we have standards that we follow. host: louisiana, emily on our line for democrats. caller: good morning, greta. i wanted to save the quick, i heard some gentleman say you ought to be fired and i was so upset with him. god bless you, greta, putting up
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with all of the baloney. mayor smith, i am calling from louisiana. i live south of new orleans -- i don't want to put you on the spot, but i am calling on the democrats' line and i'm actually independent now and i do not know if you are aware of the problems that we have in south louisiana with the coastal erosion and hurricanes that have battered and bruised and just ravaged our wetlands. we have lost money in our area. i want to move to arizona -- and i'm in my 50s now. i want you to know that i have been really wanting to move there. but our governor and our mayor -- i know the mayor of new orleans, not mine there, but of new orleans -- i know you probably know him -- i just want
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to kind of touch on somebody said something a while ago because i am surprised -- i don't know what kind of situation mesa is in, because i want to move to arizona on -- host: mr. smith, can you give her an idea? guest: there are a lot of people who want to move to arizona and i am glad you find our nice home attractive. we are struggling just like a lot of the areas of the country and in some cases, more so. we probably have felt the brunt of the housing boom worst than other areas. we had a huge boom and when the bubble burst it affected arizona peak in very severe ways. but we would love to have people moved in, because we need your talent and we need your productivity and we still need people to come in to build a better state and a better economy. i am very familiar with the challenges you have.
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believe it not, i studied a lot about a salt water incursion in that area. host: the population in mesa, arizona, has drawn from 1990 through 2008 by 58%. how is that impacted york city as far as your economy there and can you afford to have people move? guest: growth has been one of the big challenge is because in many ways the economy was built on growth. growth will pay for itself over time as long as you don't have huge values that you have to go through economically. we are going through one of those huge rallies, it may be a deep canyon. when you have a deep canyon you find the services have a hard time keep an up with the growth and you are really stretched thin. we used to brag in arizona about the number of people, our growth figures and how -- i guess it is a sense of, people love us so they move here.
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i think what you see in arizona is a switch away that -- from that. we want growth and arizona, but we want growth and jobs, the number of industries, and quality rather than quantity. i think in many ways, the silver lining in this very dark economic clout in arizona is the state is now realizing that some of the policies of the past are truly not sustainable. and we need to change the way we go after our economic growth. host: massachusetts on our republican line. good morning, jim. caller: mayor, good to meet you. i want to go back to what you said a bit earlier. you said since the original tarp funds were passed from a number of various sources, you received somewhere in the neighborhood -- and i think he said $70 million? guest: that is a variety of different sources and total direct and indirect effects.
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caller: foreign and 62,000 people? guest: 465,000. caller: when greg asked about the jobs saved, you said you have not really track that. i would like to see better proving of how well our tax dollars are being spent if we are going to give somebody as much as $70 million, even to little folks like us out here. host: do you want to take a stab at that? guest: i think you make a valid point. the purpose from the federal level, state purpose was to create and save jobs. i am not saying that is not important. i guess i am saying all local level we look at but civic projects. our primary purpose was not to attract a number of jobs -- not that it is not important but it is not that we -- it is that we did not do that specific accounting. we look at the number of police
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officers out easily we could keep. but then we looked at the number of projects we had. what are we building? what happens is we had several projects that would not have been built -- they were shot already and in the budget or program that we simply accelerated and were able to build. not that we did not think it was important but it was not our primary focus or purpose. host: illinois, philip, good morning. caller: i wanted coattail on the young lady, the young man talked about you just seven liberals on -- you are very even toned with your republican, liberal, whenever. actually i'm an independent so it does not matter to me. i do want to say he was totally out of context and wrong. mayor -- and i do have another comment for you, greta. when you start saying you are going to hire more police officers -- yes, police officers
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are a good thing if you can afford them. but on a state budget, you pay for these police officers with taxes. if you don't have a manufacturing base thing you money for manufacturing or fabricating some kind of a product that you can sell, you can't collect taxes so you are actually building yourself a bigger hole. so, think about going may be with sba, small business administration, going out and see if you have entrepreneurs who want to start a business to produce something. not a restaurant, i'm talking products. host: we will leave it there. mayor smith? guest: we are actually doing that. economic development is my number one goal after public safety. the two are not mutually exclusive. they do go hand in hand appeared to get to the point of the caller, believe me, are city council looked very hard at
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what the long term obligations are for adding the police officers to the street. under the cops program, the federal government pays for the first three years of the police officers as long as the city will pick up your four or beyond. we did not take the decision lightly, and we said when we look at the federal money from any source, we look at the obligations -- what kind of benefits can we get? the truth of the matter is that the city cannot and a community cannot thrive unless it is safe. no business is doing something in the community unless it is safe. so really, you cannot have economic development without having public safety and public safety, of course, is threatened when you don't have economic development. it really are interconnected, and that is how we look at it. host: alabama, mathieu, good morning. caller: of good morning, may year. -- good morning, may year. i'm a first-time caller and please believe me if i'm not as
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articulate as some of the more experienced. but i'm also following up, to some extent, on basically the threat of what has been going on. again, thank you for your patience. i asked how exactly does the government funding of the police department actually help out any economic development other than -- obviously, you have salaries for your police officers, etc., and i understand security of the community might lead to better economic growth. my question is, wouldn't it be spent better in another area as far as -- there are scarce hours available. wouldn't it be better to be spent in other more shovel ready projects? guest: it depends upon what
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level you are talking about. i guess if you were talking about creating a cadillac-type of police or public safety operation, then you are right, the choice is do we need to go to the higher level or can we reap more benefits going to another area. in mesa, when looking at what basic levels of police service. if you look at some of the standards from police organizations, a city our size should have an hundred police officers. after the recent round of cuts we will have barely over 800 police officers. we are very much struggling keeping and maintaining even the basic level of boots on the street. that is how we looked at it. we have to maintain that base level. it is not a matter of choice between better alternatives, as much as it is, can we continue to provide this base level at the current level of funding, and we decided we couldn't. adding the 25 police officers, for example, of was very
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essential to our program to maintain this level of public service. host: what is a livable wage? guest: our meeting in, it is somewhere in the mid to upper 30's, police -- median in, is somewhere between mid to upper '30's and police officers make around mid 40,000 range. host: what is the impact of the recession on homelessness and poverty? guest: are homeless rate has not gone up but i don't think it is because people are not homeless. arizona is a very transient community. what we found is a lot of our people who are of unemployed have simply left the state. that is why i believe the 8% unemployment number, while it sounds really good on the surface, i think it is a bit misleading because i think there are a lot of people in arizona who have simply given up, they were related to the construction industry, which completely have fallen in the hole, and i think
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that left the state. so, i think the levels are similar, about the same as they work, but a little misleading because people have moved on. they have tried different places and on to better places. host: what about poverty and the reliance on food stamps? guest: that has certainly gone up. we know in arizona, are medicaid funding for the poor has gone of domestically, food stamps are up. those areas have definitely gone up. that primarily affects the state budget more than city budget but it definitely has bite. host: fort worth, texas. caller: i wanted to ask you about growth -- cities and states. 30 years ago when i was in college i listened to one of our politicians here -- no longer in politics -- but he was talking about the state of texas and our
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capacity to tax and talking about the business is coming to texas and the growth and he compared it to the northeast of being at 150% of their capacity to tax. you would understand that better than i did. he said there were 60%, 70% capacity to tax at the time. is there anyway in our country where we would get to the point where we maintain our cities and our housing of the way it is without having a gross all the time or are we always going to be in a cycle of growth where we are destroying and building and destroying and building and expanding? there are beautiful towns and there are beautiful towns and our country still have been overseas. a lot of the towns are the same year after year. are we ever going to get to that point? will it always be on the path to progress through growth? guest: that is a major debate
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going on. what kind of growth do we want? what kind of growth are we going to accept? one of the big differences between america and europe is that our individual freedoms are much different here. we are going to grow. we're going to continue to have immigration. america is a place that people want to be. we also have the absolute freedom to move from state to state and city to city. people will be able to go where they want to go. i think the secret is whether we can balance the cost of growth with the opportunities that growth provides. that is what the problem has been. it is a big country. we can accommodate a lot of things. i think people will go where they see opportunities and where they experience quality of life. that is the big challenge we have, to maintain the quality of life while still growing.
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arizona is equally guilty on that. mesa group to fast. -- may set grew -- mesa grew faster than it should have. i think you will see sustainable things that will keep the quality of life. caller: good morning. thank you for c-span and the impact it has had on our great country. mayor, i want to get your opinion on what may be a bright spot to the financial meltdown in our country. country. ever since the industrial revolution, i believe citizens have been raped financially by the government bureaucracies growing bigger and bigger and our government agencies like the securities and exchange commission and the government accounting office being our watchdogs, have let corporations and big, powerful companies do all kinds of off sheet, balance
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sheets financial things that have really rape of the citizens financially, and now, in a time of scarcity, citizens are becoming aware of what has all been taking place over the years of and we are, thanks to c-span and other places, the internet, we are becoming more aware of what is happening. and going forward we may be able to control these things a little bit. thank you. host: any thoughts? guest: i can tell you -- this is my first elected office and before this i was a businessman, i owned a business and built a lot with the banks and i have seen the banking environment changed considerably over the last two or three decades. there was a time when bank consolidation and the creation of the big national banks was applauded, it was celebrated. you know, i am not so sure it is the case anymore.
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i remember the days when you had a lot of local and state banks and they were a lot closer to especially the small-business person. i think there are valid points, as you see now, we have institutions that are supposedly too big to fail. i think it will be a lot of debate as to whether this is something going forward is the best for america. i think there is a place for smaller institutions that are closer to the consumers that understand truly the needs of a specially small business. the capital markets for small business are still dry. there is just no money out there. we hear all day long -- i know because i am a small businessman, i know what it is like to try to get financing and it is hideous. that is not the case when you have a smaller banks, or at least operations that are closer to the consumer -- the consumer meeting, the small businesses. host: president obama's
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announced on banks. here is "the wall street had 9." restricting risk-taking by bigger firms as battle looms. guest: i think we are sort of swatting at things. i fear what the banks is there is definitely something out of whack. when you have the kind of suffering going on, the lack of capital, then you hear about huge bonuses and profits, there is definitely something that is out of whack. i think one of the problems having banks that are basically wall street driven right now and we don't have as many local banks -- we have been in months that are out there -- is they become disconnected from the average citizen and especially small business and i think that creates a problem. i am not sure taking swings at the big banks are going to solve the problem. i think there are things that are much more fundamental than that, and i think that the small businesses are being hurt by that. .
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caller: i would like to know, since you have decided not to put the money into jobs, what programs do to put the money into? what did you build with the money? pandit that benefit? if you could tell me we did come did that benefit? i have one more quick question. guest: we did not put it into programs. we do not want to create a job that we will have to pick up and not be able to fund the next year and a year after. our money goes to specific things. we create things like summer jobs for youth that are well defined where we know what we're doing. we are building transit
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stations. we are building roads. we are building fire stations. we are building things that have lasting value. they do not create long-term burdens on the city that we cannot control. host: go ahead with your follow- up. caller: the next question is, you explained -- it is not coming to me. that is okay. thank you very much. host: appreciate the telephone calls this morning. you and other mayors met with the first lady to talk about obesity and child nutrition in this country. what is the impact of obesity in mesa, arizona? about of the city -- obesity. guest: i know after she spoke, i
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felt guilty, running down my regime and program. we talk about health care a lot. in many ways, even the discussion on health care is on the back end. we can save money. we have shown that we can do so by living healthier, dealing with costs, and in things that are politically charged. if people could exercise more and eat better, the savings could be in the billions of dollars. i know the conference of mayors has decided to latch onto that. the city of mesa will also be talking about how we can better serve our citizens to help them >> president obama is an ohio.
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he hosted a town hall meeting of the local community college. the focus was jobs, the economy, and health care. if you missed any of the event, we will have it for you in its entirety at 8:00 p.m. eastern here on c-span. taking a look at the $787 billion stimulus plan signed into law last february, over $315 billion has been committed. just over $167 billion has been paid out as of january 15. we have been keeping track of the stimulus money for you. go to to watch speeches and congressional debates and find links to watchdog groups. >> wednesday, president obama delivers his first state of the union address to congress,
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laying out his vision for the country and his plan to deal with issues like unemployment, health care, and the wars and a rock and afghanistan. the state of the union address will be on wednesday night. our coverage starts at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. you can also listen to the address live on your iphone with the c-span radio app. >> secretary of state clinton called on china to lift web surfing restrictions. she also remarked on other countries that have tightened rules, including tunisia, egypt, iran, and saudi arabia. this comes after google reported several serious cyber attacks originated from china. this is just over one hour. >> i want to welcome you to event that we will long remember. we're privileged to witness a major foreign-policy speech by the secretary of state.
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i encourage you to stay for a panel discussion led by the director of the secretaries policy planning staff. this is the perfect setting for a discussion about freedom. the museum is not a classic museum. it has lots of history, but its purpose is to promote the freedoms that allow that history to be freely and fully told. it is told 1st by newspapers, then by radio, television, and now by the web. the museum exists to illustrate values embodied in the first amendment. they are five freedoms that have been ours for centuries and that we hold as der going into the internet 21st century, as we did at the time of the revolution. the museum is also about honoring reporters who died in the line of duty, women and men who gave their lives so that others might know the truth. there's a beautiful space on the
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third floor of this building dedicated to them. we at the museum are particularly grateful to you, madam secretary, for having presided over the original dedication of the memorial when the museum was in arlington and you were first lady. the location and do these have changed, but your support remains. we truly appreciate it. i am also delighted to welcome you here in another role as the president of the foundation dedicated to the democratic ideal of informed, engaged communities. we are a major supporter of the museum, just as we support free expression and journalism excellence. more than 50 years ago, jack knight said the purpose of the great newspaper was to inform and eliminate the minds of its readers so that the people might determine their own true interest. those values resonate today as
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the tools of the networked world help to shed light on social problems and opportunities and empower democratic action. the commission on the information needs of communities in a democracy is a project of the aspen institute. it is also chaired by the former solicitor ted olson. it released its report at the museum last october. a central conclusion of the report is that internet freedom and universal access our tools of a functioning democracy. they function together. they should be seen as a common goal. we support the freedoms and access to information that are at the core of the american experience. those freedoms make us who we are. we should welcome the opportunity to let them define us. we are here today to address that theme. it is with pride and great
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anticipation that i present to you the secretary of state of the united states, hillary clinton. [applause] >> thank you very much for that kind introduction and you and your colleagues leadership at this important institution. it is a pleasure to be here at the museum. the museum is a monument to some of our most precious freedoms. i am grateful for the opportunity to discuss how those freedoms apply to challenges of the 21st century. although i cannot see all of you because and said things like this, the lights are in my eyes and you are in the dark, i know that there are many friends and former colleagues. i wish to knowledge charles cooper b-- charles overby, and y
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former colleagues in the senate. both of them worked for passage of the voice at that speaks to congress'and the american people's commitment to internet freedom. it is a commitment that crosses party lines and branches of government. also, i am told here as well are senator brown bacback and rep sanchez, many representatives of the diplomatic corps, participants in our international visitor a leadership program on internet freedom from china, colombia, iran, lebanon, and cordoba. i also want to acknowledge the president of the aspen institute. he was recently named to our broadcasting board of governors and instrumental in supporting the work on internet freedom that the aspen internet has --
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aspen institute has been doing. this is an important speech on a very important subject. before i begin, i want to speak briefly about haiti. during the last eight days, the people of haiti and the people of the world have joined together to deal with a tragedy of staggering proportions. our hemisphere has seen its share of hardships. but there are few precedents to the situation we're facing in port-au-prince. communication networks have played a critical role in our response. they were decimated and in many places totally destroyed. in the hours after the earthquake, we worked with partners in the private sector to first set up the text haiti campaign so that mobile phone users in the united states could donate via text messages. that initiative has been a showcase for the generosity of the american people. thus far, it has raised over $25
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million for recovery efforts. information networks have also played a critical role on the ground. when i was with president preval in port-au-prince on saturday, one of his top priorities was to get communications up and going. the government could not talk to each other, what was left of it. the civilian and military leadership were severely impacted. the technology committee has set up interactive maps to help us identify needs and target resources. on monday, a 7-year-old girl and two women were pulled from the rubble of collapsed supermarket by an american search and rescue team after they sent a text message calling for help. these examples are manifestations of a much broader phenomenon. the spread of information networks is forming a new nervous system for our planet.
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when something happens in haiti or hunan, the rest of us learn about it in real time from real people. we can respond in real time as well. americans are eager to help in the aftermath of a disaster. the girl trapped in the supermarket are connected in ways that were not even imagined a year ago, even a generation ago. that same principle applies to almost all of humanity today. as we sit here any of you or our children can take out the tools that many carry every day and transmit this discussion to billions across the world. in many respects, information has never been so free. there are more ways to spread more ideas to more people than any other moment in history. even in authoritarian countries, information networks are helping people to discover new fax and making government
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more accountable. during his visit to china in november, president obama held a town hall meeting with an online component to highlight the importance of the internet. in response to a question that was sent in over the internet, he defended the right of people to freely access information. he said that the more freely information flows, the stronger the societies become. he spoke about how to access to information helps citizens hold their own governments accountable. it generates new ideas. it encourages creativity and entrepreneurship. the united states'belief in that is what brings me here today. amid this unprecedented surge in connectivity, we must also recognize that these technologies are not an unmitigated blessing. these tools are also being exploited to undermine human
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progress and political rights. just as nuclear power can energize a city or destroy it, modern information networks and the technology is that they support can be harnessed for good or for ill. the same networks that work for dan also allow al qaeda to incite hatred against the innocent. technologies with the potential to open up access to government and promote transparency can also be hijacked by governments to crush dissent and deny human rights. in the last year, we've seen an increase in threats to the free flow of information. some countries have stepped up their censorship of the internet. in vietnam, access to popular social networking sites have suddenly disappeared.
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last friday in egypt, 30 bloggers and activists were detained. one member of the group was thankfully no longer in prison is with us today. while it is clear that the spread of these technologies is transforming our world, it is still unclear how that transformation will affect the human rights and human welfare of the world population. on their own, new technologies do not take sides in the struggle for freedom and progress. but the united states does. we stand for a single internet where all of humanity has equal access to knowledge and ideas. we recognize that the world information infrastructure will become what we and others make of it. this challenge may be new, but our responsibility to help ensure the free exchange of ideas goes back to the birth of our republic. the words of the first amendment
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to our constitution are carved in 50 tons of marble on the front of this building. every generation of americans has worked to protect the values etched in that stone. franklin roosevelt built on these ideas when he delivered his four freedoms speech in 1941. at the time, americans faced a cavalcade of crises and a crisis of confidence. the vision of a world in which all people enjoyed freedom of expression, freedom of worship, freedom from want, and freedom from fear transcended the troubles of his day. years later, one of my heroes, eleanor roosevelt, worked to have these principles adopted as the cornerstone of the universal declaration of human rights. they have provided a lodestar to every succeeding generation, inviting us, and enabling us to move forward in the face of
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uncertainty. as technology moves forward, we must think back to that legacy. we need to synchronize our technological progress with our principles. in accepting the nobel prize, president obama spoke about the need to build a world in which peace rests on the inherent rights and dignities of every individual. in my speech on human rights in georgetown a few days later, i talked about how we must find ways to make human rights a reality. today we find an urgent need to protect these freedoms on the digital frontiers of the 21st century. there are many other networks in the world. some assist in the movement of people or resources. some facilitate exchanges between individuals with the same work or interests. but the internet is a network that magnifies the power and potential of all others. that is why we believe it is critical that the users are assured certain basic freedoms.
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freedom of expression is first among them. this freedom is no longer defined solely by whether citizens can go into the town square and criticized their government without fear of retribution. blogs, emails, social networks and text messages have opened up new forums for exchanging ideas and created new targets for censorship. as i speak to you today, the government censors somewhere are working furiously to embrace my words from the record of history. but history itself has already condemned these tactics. two month ago i was in germany to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the fall of the berlin wall. the leaders gathered at that ceremony pay tribute to the courageous men and women who made the case against oppression. by circulating small pamphlets, these leaflets questioned the
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claims and intentions of dictatorships in eastern bloc. many people played -- paid dearly for distributing them. their words helped to affect the iron curtain. the berlin wall defined an entire era. today, remnants of the wall sit inside this museum, where they belong. the new iconic infrastructure of our age is the internet. instead of division, it stands for connection. even as networks spread through nations around the globe, virtual walls are cropping up in place of visible walls. some countries have erected electronic barriers that prevent people from accessing portions of the world's networks. they've expunged words, names, and freezes from search engine results. they have violated the privacy of citizens to engage in non-
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violent political speech. these actions contravened the universal declaration of human rights which tell us that all people have the right to speak, receive, and impart information and ideas to any media and regardless of frontiers. with the spread of these restrictive practices, a new information curtain is descending across much of the world. beyond this partition, viral videos and posts are becoming symbols of our day. governments are targeting independent thinkers who use these tools. in the demonstrations that followed iran's presidential election, cellphone footage of a woman's bloody murder provided a digital indictment of the government's brutality.
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we've seen reports that when iranians living overseas posted online criticism of their nation's leaders, their family members and iran were singled out for retribution. despite an intense campaign of government intimidation, brave citizen-journalists in iran continue using technology to show the world and their fellow citizens what is happening inside their country. in speaking out on behalf of their own human-rights, iran in people have inspired the world. -- the iranian people have inspired the world. it is redefining how technology is used to spread truth and expose injustice. all societies recognize that free expression has its limits. we do not tolerate those who incite others to violence, such as the agents of al qaeda, who are using the internet to promote the mass murder of innocent people across the world. hate speech that targets
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individuals on the basis of race, gender, or sexual orientation is reprehensible. it is an unfortunate fact that these issues are growing challenges that the international community must confront together. we must also grapple with the issue of anonymous speech. those who use the internet to recruit terrorists or distribute stolen intellectual property cannot divorce there online actions from their real-world identities. these challenges must not become an excuse for government to systematically it violates the rights and privacy of those who use the internet for peaceful, political purposes. the freedom of expression may be the most obvious freedom to face challenges with the spread of new technologies, but it is not the only one. the freedom of worship usually involves the right of individuals to commune or not with their creator. that is one channel of
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communication that does not rely upon technology. the freedom of worship also speaks to the universal right to come together with those who share your values and your vision for humanity. in our history, those gatherings took place in churches, synagogues, mosques, and temples. today they may also take place on line. the internet can help to bridge divides between people of different faiths. as the president said in cairo, freedom of religion is central to the ability of people to live together. as we look for ways to expand dialogue, the internet holds such tremendous promise. we have already begun connecting students in the united states with young people and muslim communities around the world to discuss local challenges. we will continue using this tool to foster discussion between individuals from different religious communities. some nations, however, have
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coopted the internet as a tool to target and silence people of faith. last year in saudi arabia, a man spent months in prison for blogging about christianity. a harvard study found that the saudi government blocked many web pages about hinduism, christianity, and even islam. countries including vietnam and china employed similar tactics to restrict access to religious information. just as these technologies must not be used to punish peaceful political speech, they must also not be used to persecute or silence religious minorities. prayers will always travel on higher networks. but connection technologies like the internet and social networking sites should enhance individuals' ability to worship as they see fit, come together with people of their own faith, and learn more about the beliefs of others. we must work to advance the
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freedom of worship online, just as we do in other areas of life. there are of course of hundreds of millions of people living without the benefit of these technologies. in our world, talent may be distributed universally, but opportunity is not. . .
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in bangladesh, more than 300,000 people have signed up to learn english on their mobile phones. in sub-saharan africa, where women on japan doors use the internet to get access to my corporate loans and finance. -- in sub-saharan africa, where women entrepreneurs use the internet. in many cases, mobile phones, the internet, can 24do for economic growth what the green movement did for agriculture. in a typical developing country, a 10% increase in the penetration rate for mobile phones lead to an almost 1%
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increase in per capita gdp. put this into context, for india that will translate into almost $10 billion a year. a connection to global information networks is like an on ramp to mont finnertmodernit. there are 4 billion cellphone in use today. many of them are in the hands of market offenders, rickshaw drivers, and others, whose historically access. -- many of them are in the hands of market vendors. we should use this to help to lift people out of poverty and give them a freedom from want. we have every reason to be hopeful about what people can beat able to accomplish when they leverage technology to
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achieve progress. make no mistake. some are and will continue to use global information network for darker purposes. violent extremists, criminal cartels, sexual predators, authoritarian governments all seek to exploit these global networks. terrorists have taken advantage of the openness of our societies to carry out their plots, violent extremist use the internet to radicalize and it intimidate. as we work to advance freedom's, we must work against those who use communication networks as tools of destruction and fear. government citizens must have confidence that the networks at the core of their prosperity marseilles and resilient. this is about more than hackers who deface web sites. our ability to bank online,
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using electronic commerce and safeguard billions of dollars of intellectual property are all at stake if we cannot rely on the security of our information networks. disruptions in the systems demand a court made a response by all governments, the private sector, and the international community. we need more tools to help law enforcement community across the jurisdictions when organized crime syndicates attack networks for financial gains. the same is true when social ills such as child pornography and to the exploitation of traffic, women and girls online is there for the world to see and for those who exploit these people to make a profit. we applaud efforts such as the council on europe's convention on cyber crime that facilitates international cooperation in prosecuting such offenses and we wish to redouble our efforts.
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we have taken steps as a government and a department to find a diplomatic solutions to strengthen global cyber security. we have people working on this. we have created an office to coordinate foreign policy in cyberspace. and, we have worked to address this challenge in the u.n. and to put cyber security on the world's agenda. president obama has just appointed a new cyberspace policy coordinator who will help us work closely to make sure that everyone's networks stay free, secure, and reliable. states terrorists and those that act as their proxy's will know that the united states will protect their networks. those who disrupt the free flow of information and our society, or any other pose a threat to our economy, our government, and our civil society.
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countries and governments that engage in cyber attacks should face condemnation. in an internet connected world, an attack on one nation's networks can be an attack on all. we can create norms of behavior among states and incurred respect for the global network. the final freedom, one that was probably inherent in what president and mrs. roosevelt thought about and wrote about all those years ago is one that flows from the four i have already mentioned, the freedom to connect. the idea that governments should not prevent people from connecting to the internet to website for to each other. the freedom to connect is like the freedom of assembly only in cyberspace. it allows individuals to get on- line, come together, and hopefully cooperate.
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once you are on the internet, you don't need to be a tycoon or a rock star to have a huge impact on society. the largest public response to the terrorist attacks in mumbai was launched by a 13-year-old boy. he used networks to organized blood drives. in colombia, an engineer brought together more than 12 million people in 190 cities around the world to demonstrate against the farc terrorist movement. these were the largest anti- terrorist demonstrations in history. in the weeks that followed, the farc saw a more loss in membership and had seen in a decade. one mexican individual who was
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fed up with drug violence organized a protest. in mexico city, 150,000 people took to the streets in protest. the internet can help to push against -- pushed back against those who advocate violence. in iran, the internet has been a critical tool for to help to protest suspicious election results. we have seen the power of these tools to change history. some of you might remember the 2008 presidential election. the freedom to connect to these technologies and to help transform societies is also important to individuals. i was moved by the story of a doctor who is desperately trying
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to diagnose his daughter's rare medical condition. he consulted with two dozen specialists. he did not have an answer. he finally identified the condition and found a cure by using an internet search engine. that is one of the reasons why unfettered access to search engine technology is important in individuals' lives. the principles i have outlined today will guide our approach in addressing the issue of the internet freedom and the use of these technologies. i want to speak about how we apply them in practice. the u.s. is committed to devoting the diplomatic, technological resources to advance these freedoms. we are a nation made up of immigrants from every country and every interest that spans the globe. our foreign policy is premised on the idea that no country more
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than america stands to benefit when there is cooperation among peoples and states. no country shoulders a heavier burden when conflict and misunderstanding drive nations apart. we are well placed to seize the opportunities that come with interconnected the parent as the birthplace for so many of these technologies including the internet itself, we have the responsibility to see them used for good. we need to develop our capacity for 21st century statecraft. we wanadjusting to new technolos is rarely easy. when the telegraph was introduced, it was a source of great anxiety for many in the diplomatic community or the prospect of receiving data instructions was not entirely welcome. just as our diplomats master the telegraph, they're doing the same to harness the potential of these new tools as well.
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i am proud that the state department is already working in more than 40 countries to help individuals silenced by oppressive governments. we are making this issue a priority at the u.n. as well. we are including internet freedom as a component in the first resolution we introduced after returning to the u.n. human rights council. we are supporting the development of new tools that enable citizens to exercise their rights to free expression by circumventing politically motivated it censorship. we are providing funds to groups around the world to make sure those tools get to the people that needed them in local languages and with the training they need to access the internet safely. the u.s. has been assisting in these efforts=óf for some time. there has been a focus on implementing these programs as efficiently and effectively as possible.
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both the american people and nations that sensor the internet should understand that our government is committed to helping promote internet freedom. we want to put these tools in the hands of people who will use them to advance democracy and human rights, to fight climate change, to build global support for president obama possible of a world without nuclear weapon -- president obama's goal of a world without nuclear weapons. we will work with partners in industry academ, and academic institutions to enhance the power of technology and to vacations. by using these tools, we can in power citizens and leverage our traditional diplomacy. we can address inefficiencies'.
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let's say i want to create a mobile phone application that would allow people to rate government ministries including ours on their responsiveness and efficiency. also, to ferret out and report corruption. the hardware required to make this work is already in the hands of a potential users. the software involved would be relatively inexpensive to develop and deploy. if people took the advantage of this tool, it would help us to target our foreign assistance spending, and courage investment in responsible government. -- encourage investment in responsible government. the state department currently lacks a mechanism to make it happen. this initiative to help to resolve the problem and to
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provide a long-term dividends from modest investment and innovation. we will find the best structure for this venture and we will need the talent from the bus companies to get this done. those of you in the room and have this kind of talent and expertise, please consider yourself invited to help us. there are companies working on ideas and applications that could already an advance our diplomatic and technology objectives. we will be launching a competition to give this work by an immediate boost. there are the best ideas that helped to break down language barriers, overcome illiteracy, connect people to the services they need. microsoft has already developed a prototype for a digital dr. that can provide medical care in
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rural communities. we want to see more ideas like that. we will work with the winners of the competition and provide grants to help build up their ideas to scale. these will supplement a great deal of important work we have already done. the service of our diplomatic and diplomacy objectives are what i had used as a basis to form a team to help governments and groups leverage the benefits of connection technologies. they have set up an initiative to help grass-roots organizations enter the digital age. they are putting in place a program in mexico to help combat violence filing people to make reports to reliable sources to avoid having retribution visited against them. they brought mobile banking to
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afghanistan. in pakistan, they created the first ever social mobile network which is or reproduced tens of millions of messages and connected to young people who want to stand at two violent extremists. in a short span, we have taken significant strides to translate the promise of these technologies in to resolve to make a difference. -- into results that make a difference. as we work together to deploy the tools of 21st century statecraft, we have to remember our shared responsibility to safeguard the freedoms i have talked about. we feel strongly that principals like information freedom are not just good policy, not just somehow connected to our national values but universal and good for business. to use market terminology, a
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publicly listed company in tunisia or vietnam that operates in an environment of censorship will always trade at a discount ability of to an identical firm in a free society. if corporate decision makers don't have access to global sources of news and information, investors will have less confidence in their decisions over the long term. countries that sensor news and information must recognize that from an economic standpoint, there's no distinction between censorship of political speech and commercial speech. it businesses in your nations are denied access to either type of information, it will inevitably impact growth. u.s. companies are making the issue of internet and information freedom and greater consideration in their business decisions. i hope that their competitors and foreign governments will pay attention. the recent incident with google
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has great interest. google has made its announcement. we look for the investigation and its results to be transparent turn to the internet has been a source of tremendous progress in china and is fabulous. there are many people in china now online. countries that restrict free access to information or violate the basic rights of internet users risk mauling themselves off from the progress of the next century. -- risk walling themselves off from the progress of the next century. the chinese government has a different opinion. we plan to address these in the context of our positive relationship parent of this issue is not just about information freedom. it is about what kind of world
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we want and what kind of world we would inhabit. it is about whether we live on a flooded with 1 internet, one global community, and a common body of knowledge that benefits and unites us all or a fragmented planet in which access to information and opportunity is dependent on where you live and the winds of censors. information freedoms support the peace and security that provides a foundation for global progress. historically, asymmetrical access to information is one of the leading causes of interstate conflict. when we face serious disputes or dangerous incidents, it is critical that people on both sides of the problem have access to the same set of facts. as it stands, americans can consider information presented by foreign governments. we do not block your attempts to communicate with the people in the u.s..
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citizens and societies that practice censorship lack exposure to outside opinions. in north korea, for example, the government has tried to completely isolate its citizens from outside opinions. this lopsided access increases the likelihood of conflict and the probability that small disagreements could escalate. i hope that responsible governments with an interest in global stability will work with us to address such imbalances. this issue is just more about claiming the high ground. it comes down to the trust between firms and their customers. consumers everywhere want to have confidence that the internet companies they rely upon will provide comprehensive search results and act as responsible stewards of their own personal information. firms that earned the confidence of those countries and
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basically provided that kind of service will prosper in the global marketplace. i really believe that those who lose the confidence will eventually lose customers. no matter where you live, people want to believe that what they call it into the internet will not be used against them. censorship should not be in any way except it by any company from anywhere. in america, american companies need to make a principled stand. disney's to be part of our national brand. i'm confident that consumers worldwide will reward companies that follow those principles. we are reinvigorating the task force as a form for addressing press to internet freedom around the world. we are urging u.s. media companies to take a corrective role in challenging foreign government's demands for
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censorship and surveillance. government has an obligation to help deal with this. we need to consider what is right. we are encouraged by the work is being done through the global network initiative. a voluntary effort by technology companies working with non- governmental organizations, experts, and social investment firms to respond to government requests for censorship. the initiative goes beyond statements of principles and promotes real accountability and transparency. as part of our commitment to support responsible private- sector engagement, the state department will convene a high- level meeting next month cochaired the undersecretaries to bring together firms that provide network services. we want to have a partnership in
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addressing this 21st century challenge. pursuing the freedoms i have talked about today is the right thing to do. i also believe is the smart thing to do. by advancing this agenda, we online our principles, our economic goals, and our strategic priorities. we need to work towards a world in which access to networks and information brings people closer together and expands the definition of the global community. given the magnitude of the challenges we are facing, we need people of around the world to pool their knowledge and creativity to help rebuild the global economy. to protect our environment, to defeat a violent extremism, and build a future in which every human being can live up to it and realize his or her potential. but we close by asking you to remember the little girl who was pulled from the rubble on
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monday in haiti. she is alive, she was reunited with her family. she will have the chance to grow. these networks took a voice that was buried and spread it to the world. no nation, and a group, no individual should stay buried in the rubble of repression. we cannot stand by white people are separated from the human family -- by while people are separated from the human family. let us recommit ourselves to this cause. let us make these technologies a force for real progress the world over. let us go forward together to champion the freedoms for our time. for our young people deserve
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every opportunity we can give them. thank you very much. [applause] whit>> thank you, madam secreta. the secretary has agreed to answer some questions. there will be three microphones in the audience. if he would make for questions short, we would appreciate it. >> madam secretary, i am robert
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gale, i am with northern virginia community college. you talk about anonymity online and how we have to prevent that and you also talk about censorship by governments. having a zeal of anonymity is actually quite beneficial. are you looking to have a balance between that and the in this is on censorship? >> absolutely. this is one of the challenges that we face. on the one hand, anonymity for texting exploitation of children. on the other hand, if protect the free expression of opposition to a repressive government. anonymity allows the theft of intellectual property. it also permits people to come together in settings that gives
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them some basis for free expression without identifying themselves. none of this will be easy. but as a fair statement. -- that is a fair statement. we all have different needs, rights and responsibilities. we should err on the side of openness and everything we can to create that. i ought we are asking for experts to help us in this. we need to the guidance of technology experts. most of them are younger than 40 but not all.
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we need the companies that do this and we need the dissident voices to have actually lived on the front lines so that we can try to work through the best way to make that balance work. >> right over here, yes. >> i am the global freedom of expression officer at freedom house. you spoke about a business and reliant on them to do the right thing. the coal business is to make a profit. what kind of teeth will you put into this? what role does the world trade organization play? how will you encourage them to do the right thing? >> well, this is one of the issues that we want to have a very vigorous discussion about. i know that asking business which is in business to make a
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profit to do the right thing is not always translated into practical practice. on the other hand, there is a broader context. companies that don't follow the sanitary and hygiene procedures of the prior generation pray -- pay a price for it. the food and other products that end up on the shelves of consumers should be safe because individual consumers in an interconnected economy cannot possibly exercise the vigilance on their own. when it comes to censorship, had been at international establishment of rules over the internet connectivity and trying to protect the basic freedoms i discussed is in the long term interest of business. i would argue is also in the
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interest of governments. i used the example of the fall of the berlin wall. it is very hard to keep information out. it was hard to keep it out in a prior age. it is harder now. trying to adjust to that, work with that, and learn from that, about what could be done better, will challenge every single government in the world. i think that business as a driver of economic growth has to have that in mind both when they go in to countries and when they confront the kind of censorship that we are hearing about are around the world. it is particularly acute for the technology companies, the media companies, obviously. it is not in any way limited to that. other companies are facing censorship as well. this is an issue that we have to talk about and to try to find as
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much common ground and then keep claiming more common ground as we go forward. >> we have a question over here on the left. >> thank you. i am the director of the website promoting civil rights in libya. we have been attacked and hacked to many times. and how can you help those forces which did not have the technology or the money to protect themselves? the hackers silenced the voices of the freedom of expression. >> this is one of the issues that we are debating and we are looking for ideas on how we can
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answer this in a positive way. after i take the last question, the director of my policy planning unit inside of the state department and the former dean of the woodrow wilson school who has written a lot of doubt in your connectivity will be leading a discussion. i hope that some of you would give your ideas, suggestions, cautions, worries will stay and get into an in-depth discussion about that. >> while your initiative takes some time, just recently the government sentenced several
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borders to 15 years in prison. what does your office plan to do to deal with such a situation in vietnam? -- just recently the government sentenced several bloggers to 15 years in prison. >> week dwe do not approve of te treatment of those people, the buddhist monks and nuns who have also been harassed. we want to raise the standard living in that country. we don't believe the government should be afraid of commentary that is internal. in fact, if you disagree with what a blockegger says, aren't u with them. put out contrary information.
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present the flaws in the argument. i hope that vietnam will move more in that direction. it goes hand in hand with the progress we have seen in the last few years there. >> madam secretary, you mentioned that u.s. companies have to do the right thing, not just what is good for the profit. what if i am a company and i have a subsidiary in china and the chinese government is coming after my people? what can the state department tdo? >> we speak out on those individual cases. we're hoping to engage in a very candid and constructive
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conversation with the chinese government. we have had a positive year up very open discussions with our chinese counterparts. we have established a foundation of understanding. we disagree on important issues with them, they disagree on important issues with us. we want to encourage and support increasing openness in china because we believed that it will further add to that do not growth and the democratization on local level that we see occurring in china. on individual cases, we continue to speak out. on the broader set of issues, we hope to have the kind of discussion that might lead to better understanding and changes in the approach is currently being taken. >> thank you.
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>> when you talk about social network, we try to address the issue of use. would you be open to the youth forum? one of the reason that they get radicalized is because it don't have a way to express themselves. would you be open to those ideas? >> yes, we would. we have been expanding our outreach, particularly to muslim youth. i agree that not only young
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people in the moslem world but young people across the world -- in the muslim world but young people across the world are increasingly disaffected from the government. and americain america, the averg person spends 8 hours a day with media. this is more time than they spend in school, with their families. if you think about the power of this information connection to young people, i don't think it should cause panic. i don't think that we should try to stop it and prevent it. we should figure out how to
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utilize it better. how were values passed around a millennia ago? how were values to indicated in a home? now they are being communicated by the internet. we cannot stop it. let's figure out how better to use it, participate in it, and to focus on the needs of young people. they're looking for information, they're looking for answers. at least until now in most cultures that i'm aware of, despite all of the time that young people spend with technology, when they are asked to do they look to for guidance about values, they still say their families. if families feel disconnected from their highly connected young people and don't know what the young people are doing on line, then we see the problems that can result. there are so many manipulators'
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online right now. not just stoking the anxiety and the fears of muslim youth but all kinds people everywhere. we have our own work to do not just through our government but through our families, through our education systems and every other institution to make sure we understand the power of this technology and to engage with young people. >> thank you for inviting us to apply for grants. i am interested in knowing what are the procedures, what does the agency need to do with this?
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>> in addition to our panel, we have a lot of members of our team that are working on these initiatives. we can certainly connect up if we invited you, we know how to find you. we want to make sure that we can get affirmation about these programs. >> -- we can get information about these programs. >> i would encourage you to stay for the panel. i'm sure some of the questions will get answered. let's do one last question over here on the far left. >> hello. thank you for your program.
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at howard university, we are interested in particular aspects of the internet with respect to the digital divide. your story about the young girl being pulled out of the trouble. this reminds me of how many others could have been saved if they had the technology. we are interested in knowing in terms of access. not only internet freedom but free internet for all. what can be done right now for haiti. >> as you know, that is a continuing issue for us. we have 4 billion cell phones.
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the cellphone is becoming the principal tool for communications. there is texting and other forms of communication that it can perform. many businesses and non- governmental organizations are passing them out at low cost. we have to keep incentivizing end encouraging the technology to be as low cost as possible so it can be as ubiquitous as possible. we have made tremendous progress. 10 years ago, we talked a lot about the digital divide. there are still questions of access, questions of cost. obviously, we have to recognize that a lot of the search engines are run by for-profit companies. there are lots of ways to try to encourage more universal access. that is the overall policy of the obama administration. thank you.
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>> thank you, madam secretary. >> thank you very much. [applause] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] >> welcome to the state department. we are very pleased to have albatrosses and the assistant secretary for human rights. they are here to talk about the
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comments made by the secretary yesterday. >> good afternoon, everyone. it is a pleasure to be with you. i want to take a few minutes to give it some context to the remarks yesterday by secretary clinton. i thought was appropriate that if it was not the day it was off by one day. it was a year to 8 day that she gave that speech. to me, that was significant because one of the things that has defined her tenure as secretary of state is figuring out the way in which we can modernize our statecraft. we have learned a lot over the course of this year. we have learned some things that are very positive about the role technology can play in our
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foreign-policy. we have nothing to celebrate rainout as relates to haiti. at think it should be noted that it was at a secretaries direction that the state department said at the program to text to send money. we are also looking at the role that digital to acacias networks could play to get to the american message out. the president in cairo was able to reach many people and reached about effectively. we are no longer bound by the strictures of a traditional broadcast media. people were able to get matchups on their cell phones. we have also learned some other things. in the past year, we have seen a
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surge in al qaeda and other organizations using global networks to recruit young people. we have seen up or tearing government -- we have seen authoritarian networks continually infiltrates, mature, and shut down that works. this was seen in iran. i am sure that you have a question or two about china. so many of you keep asking me questions about china. one of the things that i wanted to point out is that according to the open net initiative, 21 countries engage in extreme censorship or filtering of content on the internet.
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this is not include countries that sensor things like pornography. 31% of the world's population lives in countries where governments heavily censored the internet for political content. we find this data staggering. that is part of what prompted yesterday's speech by the secretary. that is part of why we are in elevating internet freedom to something that is more central to our statecraft. this does not just go to the information freedom point but also what kind of world we want to live in. do we want to live in a world with one intranet?
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one common knowledge base from which we can all drawl? -- draw. board to we want to make sure that access to information is based on what country that you live-in? many know me as obama's technology policy guide during the campaign. what i have release spent the last 10 years doing is focusing on the digital divide. i started a nonprofit in a basement of that grew from being four guys with no money and a handful of ideas to the world's largest digital divide organization. to me, yesterday's announcement was a shift in the history of the internet from the primary concern of the internet being digital divide, being an issue
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of access. can one get access to the internet? now today, the number one problem that we have to dress as relates to global truncations is the internet open? is it uncensored? the last thing that i will highlight before turning it over to my colleague is that i want to highlight the role of shared responsibility. the secretary spoke very directly to the private sector. not just american global sector. this is indicative of the fact that this is not just a government to government concern. one of the things that is important about internet freedom is that it really lives at the convergence of security issues, human rights issues, and economic issues. it is not one of those three things, it is all of them.
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the private-sector does not play a secondary role, they have a primary role. she spoke aboutqñ some of the initiatives that are out there which are working which i know will be described. what i would highlight is that this is not something that we will be engaging on in a government to government basis but also in the private sector. >> i just want to say briefly that the speech yesterday is really part of a trilogy. in the past five weeks, the secretary has spoken about human rights, democracy, development, and the link between the three. she spoke about development. she spelled that out more. the speech fits within that framework.
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our approach to human rights and democracy promotion development is one of principle engagement. we will engage with the world and we will engage in multiple ways. this is one way in which that engagement will take place both diplomatically in terms of technical assistance, training. we will be actively involved in promoting the notion of internet freedom. she also spoke about universal standards and the fact that there is a global discussion. the notion of free expression is that there is one standard of freedom, one standard of free expression that applies across
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the board to every country. everyone should be entitled to the same access of information. it is very hard to change countries from outside. when we talk about democracy, it is a broad notion that says that in power in civil society, strengthening the press, giving women more power, creating an internal glitch people can change their societies, these tools are a way that people are communicating within their own societies and with the rest of the world. this is really a vital piece of what we are trying to do. we are talking about linking human rights, democracy, and development. >> on china, i'm wondering if you have any reaction or response to the chinese reaction
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to the speech. >> secretary said that we have a range of relations with the chinese there is a lot of issues on the table. there are some issues where we are working cooperatively together and some where we disagree. this is an area where we will be part of the dialogue. this is an area where we really have differences. >> how is the human rights dialogue going? >> to my mind, it is part of a strategic dialogue. it is part of a broader discussion. >> it does not seem like you are willing to talk about it. >> but is not true. we're discussing what the agenda will be and the form of the discussions. there will be a discussion of the range of issues. there will be a more formal
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dialogue in the coming months. >> yes, the text message engine donations helped -- text message donations helped. the government brought in hand- held radios. that is kind of old technology. is the thought being given to building up in the cellphone capacity or something like that where you won't have to rely on a transistor radio? >> we have a task force that is focused on technology. we are working very closely and we believe that this is a priority to be able to restore
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telecommunications to the island. and not just that people can communicate with each other but also be able to leverage those mobile platforms to help people connect to services. >> sort as a general question. in terms as carrying out what of the secretary talked about in the internet freedom, there has been some discussion about whether the u.s. will consider making internet freedom a trade issue. some of the software that allows the chinese to do would say to the sacha supplied by american companies. -- to do what they would do is actually supplied by american companies. i know the state car and has set aside money to support these efforts. there's also gif a initiative.
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is there any thought being given to giving this? >> our approach is involved and some of the grant making and support the current jobs. lots of groups are trying to break the fire wall. there is not a silver bullet for that. we have a request for proposals that is out i closes today or tomorrow. we welcome any group that has a piece of this. we look at this like the venture firms that try a lot of different things. everything will not work. we have to try different things
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in different countries. technology is a piece, training is a piece. we have to address this in a multifaceted way. everyone is welcome to apply and there is more money coming down the pike. >> i think that the secretary laid out a great additio÷ for what we plutocrawill do. there will be a hold government approach to this in addition to what we are doing at the state department. >> are you saying that this a u.s. thing -- >> we are elevating internet freedom as a matter of our
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foreign policy. we will be working with our partners to make sure that we are very aggressive. >> does this mean actively subverting the chinese firewall? >> i will not expand on that comment. funding for groups that are trying to get around the far wall. >> you are finding that? -- i will not make that comment. >> funding for groups that are trying to get around the fire wall. you are funding that? >> there are groups that are trying to exert their freedom of expression. in many of those countries, the governments would rather not have a full discussion of their own actions or of human rights were a range of other subjects.
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it is our intention to continue to work with individuals and groups that are promoting free expression. the state department work with soviet dissidents 35 years ago. some governments will characterize this in a way that you did. from my perspective, this is a question about giving people more power in their societies, speaking to one another, speaking to the rest of the world. >> you seem to be describing our relationship with china in a similar way that our relationship was with the soviet union. >> i did not mention china. i just said that some governments feel they need to restrict access to the internet.
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they need to make it possible for the expression of freedom. people should be able to expressed their opinions. there should be a strong civil society with in this country that is able to raise issues of concern. . . there are then subject to honor killings. while a circumvention is one aspect of the internet freedom
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and so, too, are other aspects of this. it is not just young men were men who can be a part of the digital age. it is also the case about issues of religious freedom and how that intersects into these issues. while china and issues of freedom of expression and censorship are very much topical today, we're looking at this very broadly. i think that speaks to the birth of the issue. >> from our earlier conversation, my understanding was the $50 million that has been spent from fiscal year 2008 custodies 40 different countries and its technology is part of that. there are $5 million of additional up for grabs now. certain the engine has been part of what you have been doing. how is that different than the
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$15 million alluded to yesterday? is that different in and other pot of money? >> let me break it down. on our side in fiscal year 2008 a grant from congress for $15 million. some of that has been spent and some is in the pipeline and being developed. there's another $5 million for fiscal year 2009 where there is a request for proposals that closes today or tomorrow. in fiscal year 2010 there is another tranche of money. that is the peace i am involved in. the $50 million she referred to, there is a range of other programs in the government relating to some of the promotional things that al-aqsa has worked on. -- that alex has worked on. our piece is separate. it is not about circumvention.
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it is coming to me, not only that one size fits all but about training people, some about technology, encouraging groups that are endangered. it is a lot about diplomacy, too, for us. when groups are in trouble that we can provide a lifeline. we have a range of thoughts, approaches, and we're working with a wide range of groups. it is not in their interest to be identified. i want to speak in general terms because the reality is that these are activities that governments are not often thrilled with. >> can you quantify how much of that goes to circumvention technology? >> i honestly do not know the answer. >> can we get back to china and the google issue? we have heard the general language from the podium from the secretary about talking to
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them, negotiations. can either you tell us exactly what has happened? have there been discussions with the ambassador here? have they got to the foreign ministry their backs can give us the nuts and bolts what has taken place? >> i will refer you to p.j. >> human-rights, religious freedom, and all of these issues we have been talking to the chinese for many years about. let's talk about something else. chinese are crying out about internet freedom. 76% of chinese are saying they want freedom on the internet. as far as freedom to the internet and china and where human rights are concerned, how
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much control do you have in regards to technology in china? most technology companies are in china. how much control do you have? >> it is important to view the human rights issue in china in a broad -- in the broadest frame. we have a very long agenda which is ongoing and these are issues we continue to discuss. the internet, cell phones are a means of expressing those issues by chinese citizens within that country. gathering information about those issues by people in the country and a way for them to express themselves to the rest of the world. we support their efforts. we clearly did not have the control over how that happens. the chinese government is very involved in overseeing that.
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that is a challenge we face. it is where we disagree with the chinese government. we believe there ought to be a global, open internet that people ought to be able to express their views in the freest terms. this is going to be a continuing diplomatic discussion. as alex said, it is partly the responsibility of companies, individually and collectively, to make sure -- to figure out what their role will be. we need to be clear that this is a diplomatic and in the natural interest -- national interest of the united states. >> that is part of why one of the things the secretary announced yesterday is that there will be of high-level meetings that will be cochaired by the undersecretaries. >> are you planning anything at the human level? -- at the un level?
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>> in response to secretary clinton's speech, they said flatly that her insinuation that china restricts access to the internet runs contrary to the fact that they ask you not to make such groundless accusations. they also said that it is harmful to china-u.s. relations. do you believe this has been harmful to our relations? do you have any intention to tempering your criticism in public over this matter given the chinese unhappiness about this? >> as the secretary said, there are a range of places where u.s. and china have mutual interests. those interests will continue to be discussed and we will continue to work with them. there are places where we disagree. we will get out a report at the
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end of next month on human rights conditions. we do that report every year that makes a range of comments about chinese human rights violations and problems. every year they come back and say that it is an interference. it is the nature of the relationship that there are issues that we will disagree on. we will continue to speak out strongly and clearly and we will have those discussions. that is part of what countries do with each other and this is part of the dialogue. >> you disagree that this has hurt the relationship? >> it is an inevitable part of the conversation that we talk about things where we disagree and try to find ways to bridge those differences. >> what exactly are the mutual interests? you disagree on the internet, it's a bet, tie 1, human-rights -- the internet, tibet, taiwan,
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the human rights issues. i would be very interested if there is anything other than afghanistan. >> there are economic relationships that are important. there are strategic conversations that are important. these are two very big, important countries in the world. we are talking about a wide range of things. there are some areas where we are working together with strategic and economic dialogue detroit district of this part of the relationship. part of it is to make sure we're talking about the things where we disagree. >> this is not about china. someone pointed out to me that singling out the egyptian man who had been in prison is going
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to go back to egypt. the question it raised was whether this was a way of signaling that the u.s. would treat dissident loggers with the same kind of diplomatic status of that day treat political dissidents of other kinds for purposes of raising bilateral talks. was that also important in signaling a new way of treating this category of people? >> part of what we now know about the 21st century is that dissonance manifests on the global communications networks. bloggers are a form of 21st century dissidents. >> i was in egypt last week. i met with a number of bloggers including one who was arrested the next day.
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to me, it is important to be raising the cases of people who are challenging official afterwards. -- challenging official actions. this is part of the nature of what we need to be doing. this happened to be a case that occurred in the last two days. >> i would point out that the secretary reference twice the small pamphlets that were passed down in the eastern bloc during the cold war. she specifically like and blogs and social then merged to modern-day campus. -- and social networks to modern day pamphlets.
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>> one aspect we have not talked about here at all is, as the secretary said, the discussion about opening up and making sure the internet is free. there is a second piece which is making sure that the internet is protected. they want to make sure it is not used in ways that is detrimental to security. we are looking at both aspects of that in a un conference. in geneva in september, we co- sponsored a resolution on the freedom of expression. part of that made it reference to the internet. we are very much aware of that piece of this and continue to use the un as a forum to make sure the freedom of expression is enforced. there's also cyber security and questions of privacy. we have to be mindful about the
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right of privacy and also finding the right ways on a global scale to find the right rules of the road for dealing with the negative and dangerous aspects of the internet. what does that mean that the u.s. will call on other nations to sign that council of europe convention or whenever she was referring to that the u.s. is a signatory to? will she colombes more nations and who will be effecting these consequences? -- will she called on more nations? >> we made reference to it and it is something we are checking on. i cannot tell you what the next step is. >> how many countries are signatories? >> i do not know. >> thank you. >> thanks a lot. >> president obama is in ohio
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today and posted a town hall meeting in the county of lorain. the focus was on jobs, the economy, and health care. if you missed this event, we will have it for you at 8:00 p.m. eastern here on c-span. this weekend, former senator and now head of the national association of broadcasters, gordon smith, on the fcc plan to expand the broadband spectrum and what it might mean for broadcasters saturday and 60 p.m. eastern on c-span. -- at 6:30 p.m. eastern. he will lay out his vision for the future of the country and to deal with unemployment, health care, and the wars in iraq and afghanistan. the state of the union wednesday night. our coverage starts at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. you can listen to the president's address live on your iphone with dean radio app.
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-- with the radio app. >> he will reflect on the first year of the obama administration. from the heritage foundation, this is one hour. >> good morning, everybody. and the vice president of the heritage foundation for foreign policy and national defense. i would like to welcome all of to the heritage foundation and a special locum to those joining us on line for this very special events. this is our sixth margaret thatcher freedom lecture. we created this in 2006 and won it away not only to honor lady thatcher but to bring greater clarity and attention to the principles and policies of freedom not only in the united states but around the world.
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for the first lecture, we had a former soviet dissident to answer the questions, "is freedom for everyone?" he established a standard for this lecture series that our subsequent speeches have matched. we have heard on economic freedom, religious freedom, on whether the united nations advances the cause of freedom, and victor davis hanson on the important relationship between security and freedom. advancing freedom is a major goal of the heritage foundation and an important element of all of the work we do here. in fact, tomorrow we will release in hong kong and washington the 16th edition of the index of ecomidom. stay tuned because there is bad news in the index score for freedom in the united states. our speaker today is dr. charles
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krauthammer. on december 25th, he described president obama's first year in office, "the year of living for recklessly." most of us know that dr. krauthammer rights is syndicated column for "the washington post." he is a harvard-educated medical doctor who was the chief resident of psychiatry at massachusetts general hospital. in 1978, he led a medical practice to come to washington and right for "the new republic." he was dave speech writer. in 1985, he began wash -- writing for "the washington post" which we have enjoyed every week ever since. in addition to this column, he tends in monthly as a four "times" magazine.
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he is a very popular public speaker. over the years, his commentary has it received many honors including a pulitzer prize in 1987. his awards include the national magazine award for essays and criticism, the first ride in prize, and the award for excellence in opinion journalism. in 2006, "the financial times" and the most influential commentator in america. there were definitely on to something. it is remarkable how much charles krauthammer contributed. "the unipolar moment," "the reagan doctrine," etc. many of us have read his columns
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and found ourselves saying, " yes, that is exactly right." that is because his writing is incisive and is thinking is so clear that it crystallizes our own thoughts perfectly. he is not just a commentator. more than any other journalist he is the maker of the "aha" moments because he gives voice to what some many of us believe. without his commitment to the truth, i believe we would all be poor in fog and less free. . poor in thought. ladies and gentlemen, please welcome charles crowd -- krauthammer. [applause]
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>> thank you for that kind introduction. people ask me how you go from watcher -- walter mondale to fox news. the answer is, i was young once. perhaps i should have subtitled my address, "how do you celebrate the first anniversary of the second coming?" the theological conundrum that has contended diligence for centuries. six months ago when i was thinking of my subject for this address, obama was half way on a trajectory downward from divinities to mortality. now that we have arrived at the last day of his first year the
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magic has worn off and the charisma has gone cold. in massachusetts, the bluest of the blue state is even thinking of collecting an obscure republican to a senate seat traditionally reserved for the kennedy family and its functionaries. the obama approval rating is at 46% and where his disapproval rating is the highest ever one year after a president's election. there is no real need for me to trace and explain his remarkable decline. instead of talking about were obama's domestic agenda has brought him, i verbose to speak about where his foreign-policy agenda has brought us. after a year of fairly steady criticism from the right, the obama foreign policy receive a second look, a wave of rather
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favorable consideration after his speech in oslo accepting the nobel peace prize. it is described as a christian realism. or it is a fusion of realism and idealism. i hate to rain on this parade, but i find it hard to join in the general swooning over this newly found foreign policy sophistication. yes, it is good that we have a president who says that condi would not have done well against hitler. it -- that gahndi would have do
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-- would not have done well. in your first evening in the freshman dorm, pacifism is a serious subject for sweet adolescence or a way of life for certain eccentric sex who survive because they live among non eccentric sects -- for certain eccentric sects. yes, obama did offer a defense of war, but remember he just announced a 30,000 troop deployment surge that was a legacy obligation he inherited. nonetheless, he so agonized about providing his generals
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with an adequate troop level that it took three months of public wrestling with the vote his conscience and his vice president before he came to that decision. what else can the leader of any serious nation do but defend the necessity of war? how can a man who is commander and sheep -- commander in chief do otherwise? one other man braises pacifism as a serious foreign policy issue? a rejection of pacifism jobs out at us as something startling in the novel which tells us much, none of that good, about the baseline from which he is operating. the willie internationalism obama has been operating under during his first year in office. -- the wooly internationalism.
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defending the necessary -- the necessity of war and protecting peace, he felt compelled nonetheless to spend the second half of his nobel address returning to the liberal internationalist themes that have garnered him the fatuous prize in the first place from the overdressed, underemployed jury who gave him the prize. what is the essence of the obama foreign policy? there are many places it can be found in the cairo speech, other legs of the apology to were -- tour, but it was addressed when he laid out of what animates the international system. "in an era where our destiny is
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shared power is not a zero sum game -- gain. new world order that elevates one nation or group above another will succeed, and alignments of nations in a long gone cold war make no sense in an interconnected world." where does one begin? power is no longer 80 some of gain? tell that to the demonstrators in the streets of tehran or the newly liberated nations of the baltic states. no nation should try to dominate another, well, perhaps but that is adolescence utopianism. the world is a hobbesian state of nature.
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no nation can dominate another? this is simple nonsense. how can a man of such high intelligence, the president of the united states, even allow himself to utter these words? the most disturbing is the notion of what he called "the cleavages of the long gone cold war, the obsolete and senseless." these cleavages were actually the dividing line between the free and at the not free, between democratic and communist, between the west and the evil empire that had stamped out the face of freedom in half of europe and an archipelago of colonies from cuba to vietnam to nicaragua. this was not accidental dividing line. in place of the so-called cleavage, he wants to bring about a new 21st century world of universal understanding and
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accommodation. for that, the u.s. is to be the facilitator, the healer, and let of course by a man floating above that all, a fellow citizen of the world as obama called himself in berlin. indeed, it was in berlin in that remarkably bizarre setting and it obama offered the best insight into how he sees the world when he asserted that the berlin wall had come down come" there is no challenge to great for a world that stands as one." as one? if anything, they stand as two. those who, for a decade struve to bring the world down -- strove to bring the wall down and those who strove to maintain it.
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wall came down not because of a kumbaya of nations but because the united states, acting alone with only a few allies, had very kind -- had very high costs in the caribbean and vietnam wars and one cold war that carried the constant threat of nuclear annihilation persisted in maintaining the five relentless a to contain and old when they destroy the soviet empire. only someone who could actually think the cold war was won by, an exertion of common humanity in the service of common universal norms could actually believe that these fictional forces hold the key to security and peace in the world today. obama apparently does.
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at the heart of this fantasy is the very notion that a community of nations with its common norms a ultimately determines the course of history. common norms? the taliban and us very different issues of "good" so do the arabs of northern sudan and the christian sudanese who live in the south and have been in near perpetual civil war over the last several decades to say nothing of the north and south in this country in the 1860's. even if people share the same aspirations, harmony does not necessarily in sioux. resources, ridges, land, and power are not infinite. people strive to gain of others have. this is all totally elementary.
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class's of values and the struggle for privacy constitute a constant in human history and they account for the other constant -- conflict and war. against all of this, the center of obama's world is what he calls the international community. he calls on it to "stand up to north korea, to restrain iran's nuclear ambitions, and to bring about his dream of nuclear disarmament." it is to this fancied entity to earn its approbation and support that obama offers says -- such ostentations of virtue like closing guantanamo. the international community, the idea of the international community, lies at the center of the obama foreign policy.
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unfortunately, it is fiction. there is no such thing. different countries have different histories, and geographies, necessities, and interests. they may occasionally align themselves in ad hoc coalitions as had occurred in the second world war -- in world war ii. there is no inherent in during national -- international community. what exists between the united states, burma, zimbabwe, and i ran? -- and iran? there are no universally recognized norms. it is kept in check not by a bureaucracy on the east river, not by some world opinion, not by promises adorned with disingenuous signatures, but by the will and the power of the
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one superpower namely the united states. one highly revealing analysis of obama foreign-policy relying on leaks from inside the white house spoke about how his approach to foreign policy owed much to his experience as a community organizer, the idea of understanding and working cooperatively to seek a common end. this is all well and good but a community organizer in the chicago operates within the protection of a very elaborate, secure, highly regulated, consensual domestic civil society. would hold society together is a supreme central authority. the sanctity of contracts and the good will, civility, and
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decency of its individual members. the international arena lacks all of these things. what keeps it from the generating -- from degenerating is not a central authority, though authority of treaties, good will among more civilized nations, but what stability we do have is owed it to the overwhelming power and deterrence threat of a superpower like the united states that defines international stability as a national interest. nonetheless, we have seen -- we seem devoted to the international community. the united nations, of course, to various parties such as the u.n. human rights council and the copenhagen climate change conference which demonstrated
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spectacularly the fatuousness of such international structures, the lack of common purpose, interest, and governance. yet, the failure of these international institutions and paper agreements seems to leave no lasting impression. did we really learn nothing from the early 20th century experience? did we really learn nothing from the kellogg pact whose signatories included germany and japan that abolished war forever? it won kellogg the peace prize in 1929. sound familiar? at least he got it for an
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actually signed useless treaty. obama got it for the imagined it useless treaty's most notably the one he has been insisting on for universal nuclear disarmament. the deaths of obama's 98 internationalism can be seen in his pursuit of this deeply and serious blow. this occurred on september 24th, one day after his speech to the general assembly when he asked -- when he ostentatiously presided over the security council, the first time an american president has ever done so. at that time, unknown to the world, obama had acknowledged that iran had constructed a
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secret underground facility. it wanted him to use that dramatic setting to stun the world but that revelation and thus to be in a position to call for immediate and powerful action. not only did obama refuse but president sarkozy was forced to scrap any mention of qum from his speech. obama only revealed the news a day later in pittsburgh. why did he forgo the opportunity? because obama did not once anything at the security council meeting to get in the way of his dream of a nuclear-free world. he did not once to dilute his proposed disarmament resolution with a diversion to iran. they have a diversion?
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it is the most important security issue on the plan in. a diversion from the fantasy of universal nuclear disarmament? sarkozy was sitting at the same counsel table watching all of this and could hardly contain himself. with obama at the chair, he pointedly observed, "obama has said our dream of a world without nuclear weapons yet before our eyes two countries are currently doing the exact opposite." then he informed the president that we lived in eight real world "not a virtual world." this critique of liberal internationalism does not mean we reject all treaties or on the oceans of the communities of nations. you can, of course, have transnational agreements between like-minded nations that do
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share norms and for whom these agreements are real. a commercial treaty between a rule of law states such as the 90 states and canada for the various agreements underlying the european union have near the power of domestic law as does a common defense pact such as that which told nato together. universal treaties necessarily include all states, it democratic and tyrannical, compliance and congenitally non compliant. such hearings will not be adhered to by rogue states who will achieve as suits their purposes rendering the treaty not only useless but worse than useless. for example, alleged violations of the non-proliferation treaties are referred to the iaea in procedure that invariably leads to complacency
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to say nothing of endless delays because it gives the illusion of enforcement. these kinds of agreements are almost always never enforced. indeed the one act of enforcement in recent times, the removal of the rogue regime of saddam hussein after a decade of the serial violations of security council resolutions demanding a disarmament has been so widely and universally denounced around the world that obama has spent much of the last year apologizing for it. as for this community of nations, this does not mean that there are no such communities. margaret thatcher and ronald reagan did not lack for a sense of community and that was the community of free nations. these communities have a
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reality, their own norms, ideals, policies, and some, like in a row, even a security apparatus to back it up. -- and some like lnato. this makes obama's internationalism particularly troubling because, as he stated at the unat"true universality involves denigrating these subcommittees as cleavages based on archaic divisions such as those that created the cold war." he says so rather directly in his u.s. address when he says " no world order that elevates the one nation or group of people
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over another will succeed," but isn't that what nato is about? a group of people proclaiming >> -- exclusive -- proclaiming exclusivity to themselves. was that not nato elevating itself above other nations and groups of people to declare that genocide would not be countenanced in the balkans and that nato would unilaterally, even without the consent of the "international community" has expressed throughout the security council. this a marsh to the denigration of nationalism and individual sovereignty but of the commonality of special relations among the community of free nations has very practical impact on america's actions in
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the world. that impact is already being felt by friend and foe, ally and adversary. if our ultimate aim is to earn a place as a good international citizen, we must abandon any signs of arrogance, any active bridewell self assertion -- any act of prideful self assertion. we must act as one among many. to do that, we must undertake two things. first, the expiation of past sins and then out of reach an accommodation. the expiation has been engaged in the late threat the last year. that is the apology tour. from eisenhower's role in the 1953 coup in iran for the first use of the atomic bomb, from our
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own mistreatment to native americans, for allegedly the suspect in europe by not recognizing its "leading role in the world." might that be because it has lived personally under our protection for 60 years? but i digress. above all, we must apologize, apparently, for showing insufficient respect and understanding of the muslim world. this from the leader of a nation that has conducted five military campaigns in the last 20 years each of which was intended to defend the defenseless muslims against and to deliver them from their oppressors in bosnia, kosovo, kuwait, afghanistan, and iraq. after the catharsis of confession, that comes
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reconciliation, the extended hand to the clenched fist. we have now had a year of this as well. but is clear is that reconciliation, the resetting of relations, starting from scratch with adversaries has its consequences. why? these conflicts did not come out of nowhere. they did not arise capriciously. they had their roots in a clash of values and we had allies in these clashes. that is why starting the world anew, as obama imagined, pressing the reset button on over the world has consequences not the least of which is among our allies. for example, recent relations with russia and caving in on the missile defense meant the train
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the czech republic and poland which had taken risks in joining us this venture -- joining us in this venture. it left them wondering about american reliability and their own post cold war independence. were they returning to the limbo where their sovereignty is constrained by moscow? hence, obama's 3 de scraping in china after refusing to meet with the dalai lama and insisting on elevating china gratuitously to near superpower status. at one point during the visit, obama suggested a chinese interest in stability in the
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indian subcontinent, they suggest that not well received in -- not received well in china. they had to settle for a white house state dinner and almost without even a team salahi's. [laughter] the relentless pressure over settlements to create grew to reject gratuitous daylight between united states and israel precisely to gain favor with the palestinians and the more recalcitrant arab states. hence the comedy of errors in honduras were obama reflexively supported chavez wannabe.
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hence also, and quite shockingly, 11 non's recent demonstrations of fealty to syria -- lebanon's recent demonstrations. the obama administration is offering consolidations -- reconciliations for the return of the ambassador. the recent astonishing visit of the lebanese president to damascus to bend a need to -- to
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ben a knee to the man he knows murdered his own father. he is now the once again rising regional power. the obama administration resets the relations with lebanon's syrian overlord. finally, the piece de resistance of this expensive accommodation, iran where he has consistently upheld the legitimacy of the thuggish regime insists on maintaining good relations with them and has been slow and often silence in support of the democratic demonstrators in the streets. the basic critique of this foreign policy is not just that it is naive and unseemly a stain
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on the american tradition of supporting democratic forces around the world, but that worst of all it has been a failure. we chose russia over eastern europe and what did we get? cooperation with iran? nothing. from china? we received explicit statements that they will oppose any sanctions on iran in the security council. what have we gotten for our pressure on israel? the complete breakdown of negotiations. for 16 years, the palestinians have negotiated with that a settlement freeze until obama arrived to reinvent the war. the arabs now refuse any negotiations as they prefer, logically, to sit back and let the united states extract unilateral concessions from israel. this is only the beginning.
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in his first year, we have only begin -- begun to see the fruits. the signs are unmistakable. should this policy continue for the next three years alone for the next seven it will have profound consequences throughout the world. it would constitute a gradual american retreat with the possible exception of afghanistan although obama has pointedly insisted that within 18 months the retreat from their begins, as well. -- from there begins. when erstwhile allies see the american umbrella beginning to be withdrawn, and they will begin to accommodate themselves to those countries we were protecting them from. so obvious are the consequences
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of the disconnect between the real world and what the president of france has called obama's virtual world that it is hard for me to believe that the current policies can continue indefinitely because at some point, empirical reality must intervene. the reality of iranian aggressiveness, of china's had long pursuits of its own national, regional, and international interests, of russia's determination to regain, of the kind israel has already offered several other governments, of syria's designs on a glove and on -- on lebanon, and chavez's design on
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countries. perhaps obama will prove himself impervious to empirical evidence and experience. in which case, all of these accommodations, the weakening of alliances, the strengthening of centers of adversarial power in moscow, beijing, caracas, tehran, and elsewhere were continue until a cataclysm wakes us up. such other wages of living in a virtual world, i pray we leave it soon. thank you very much. [applause]
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[applause] >> charles, thank you very much for that speech. he managed to cover every issue i hoped you would touch. just when we thought we were running out of time, you touched on them all. we have some time for discussion and questions for charles. we have a microphone over here. if you would like to ask a question, ask for the microphone, and identify yourself. right there. >> chris from the young conservatives coalition and teaching on the history of the conservative movement. i was wondering if you could expand your thoughts a little more on u.s. foreign policy in the western hemisphere with chavez of the consequences of his policies in the next three-
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seven years. thank you. >> i think the honduras extirpate -- escapade was damaging. calling it a "coup" not even considering the constitutional realities in honduras, it was a demonstration of where -- in the and they looked out because -- in the and they left out because the would-be dictator proved to be so inept that it fell apart. in the very end we accepted the election. there is that which sends a signal about where we stand. there was some improvement towards the end.
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it was the first time, actually, where i think in curricle evidence intervened over time and there was a maturation. the wrongheaded this decrease rather slowly but effectively over time. -- the wrongheadedness decreased. that was the first example of the crisis. the other is have the obama administration will subordinate domestic concerns over pressing international concerns. one example is the free trade agreement with columbia. columbia is a classic example of a country over coming enormous obstacles in the name of freedom. they were doing it with great success against a neighbor adversary in chavez who is intent on damaging them. here is a way in which we can
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express our support both symbolically and materially with that agreement. of course, it is being held up because of the democrats influence wielded over the democratic party by the labor unions. in one example is neglect and in the other it was an active mistake. i am not sure the crises are going to come in this hemisphere which is why i think it is on a lower scale of urgency. i think the internal problems that he has will restrain him, but it certainly will not be under this administration. >> the next? >> my name is robert. i survived the soviet union.
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thank you for your interesting lecture. ringel in a wonderful regime in the u.s.s.r., we looked upon reagan's movement to dismantle or to bring down the berlin wall as something extremely helpful and unrealistic at times. i watched the celebrations of the berlin wall and there was no mention of president reagan nor margaret thatcher nor any of that effort except that communist gorbachev was mentioned. do you see a problem in rewriting the history and why there has not been any resistance on our part to counter attack the efforts to rewrite what took place in the 1980's? >> i think it is a very telling comment you made.
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it is a very telling instance. the president of the united states removes himself to copenhagen to bring home the chicago olympics, removes himself to copenhagen for climate change, removes himself to oslo to receive a prize, but does not show up in berlin at the 20th anniversary of an event of biblical proportions one that i am sure most of us in this room never imagined we would see. that tells you how he sees the world and reinforces that quotation. i could have used one of dozens. you can see his priorities. to speak of the cold war divisions as arbitrary and not to see how rooted they were in the fundamental values of the united states of the west as a
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cleavages of some obsolete conflict is simply staggering. it tells you a lot about his world view. i thought the berlin event was very, very telling. leaving out the great figures reagan, thatcher, pope john paul, shcharansky and others. gorbachev was the hapless caretaker. to his credit, he did not shoot people in the streets. i give him credit because you have to make a choice. the unraveling was our doing. . .
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all of this is forgotten as if everyone was on the board. it was extremely partisan, the arguments, over the reagan doctrine, the rearmament, etc. that has been obscured. you are absolutely right. >> israel has stated that a nuclear-armed iran is an
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existential situation for them. it appears europe and the obama administration has more less accepted a nuclear arms iran. do you expect that israel will attack? if they do, how you foresee the consequences of all of that happening? >> froi think in the end, there is a real well. at the consequences will be great. the only question is a technical one. can this be done? do they have enough intelligence? is the stuff that is critical accessible criticalair attack or not? do they have the refueling capacity to do major damage that would set them back a few years? the israelis are not imagining they will get the solution. if you have a history that the
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jews have, even a few years is important, even if you have to -- even if you only have a temporary breast. what will happen is predictable. the i iranians will try to strike back, probably scuttle ships in the gulf. they will double the price of oil around the world, said of end worldwide recession, unleashed hezbollah which has 40,000 rocket to attract israel. hamas will do the same for the south. there will be to wars immediately. -- two wars immediately. it'll be difficult in the dangers. for the israelis, it is a difficult choice to make. i find it almost impossible to believe that they will except 6 million jews living under the
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threat of nuclear annihilation given the history of jewish people. i think that will trump all other considerations. they can deal with the other problems, i think. it is at the conventional level. they have dealt with those. a nuclear country pledges openly to the eradication of israel. it is a threat but i do not think the israelis will live with. >> we have time for one more question. over there? >> i want to thank you for your contributions that you have made. your listeners learn from new an awful lot. my question is relative to spending.
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what happened in 2010 if the chinese decide to not show up at the auction block to buy our bonds? >> two questions on the apocalypse, huh? [laughter] i am not sure the chinese would do that. it is not in their self- interest. it is the old joke -- if you owe the bank $100 and it cannot repay, you are in trouble. if you owe them $1 billion and cannot, the bank is in trouble. we are locked together. i think the threat over time is that they may try to wean themselves off. the dollar may be backed by international currencies. we may lose our place as the reserve currency in the world, which is a huge advantage for us. if the chinese sent the dollar into a spiral, they are holding
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a lot of dollars but that evaporate. their worry is that we will inflate our way out of the debt so there will be a gradual loss of the value of what they are holding. if they are clever in the longer run, they will try to diversify their holdings out of dollars into other currencies. to not show up at the auction and to unload the dollars is a way of impoverishing not just us but of them. it is a mutual assured destruction. it applies here economically with the chinese. they are a very rational people who have a long-range view of history. we the to the next election cycle. the chinese look to the next century. >> thank you. we will be publishing his speech.
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it'll probably be in a matter of days, once you approve of it. thank you very much for being here today. thank you for your excellent speech. we hope to hear your strong voice for many years to come. i want to thank you all for coming here today as well. we hope to see you again at our next lecture series. if i could ask everyone to remain seated. thank you very much. [applause] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] >> president obama is an ohio today. he hosted a town hall meeting at the local community college. the focus was jobs, if the
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economy, and health care. if you missed this event, you can watch it at 8:00 p.m. eastern here on c-span in its entirety. >> wednesday, president obama delivers his first they did the union address to congress, laying out his vision for the future of the country and its plans to deal with issues such as unemployment, health care, and the war's in iraq and afghanistan. it is wednesday night. our coverage starts at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. you can also listen to the address live on your iphone with the c-span radio application. >> on a recent trip to afghanistan, david axe absurd military operations at the airfield.
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but almost all of it is delivered by air. afghanistan is huge. the whole northern half of it is a gigantic mountain range. the roads are poor. even if they were not poor, the terrain is so unforgiving. the living by surface is expensive. i flew along with an international barred airlifter on a supply mission to the south. what happened was shipments of food and water and other supplies came in. it was uploaded in them broken up into c-130 is.
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>> we have aid bundles full of food and water was some -- we will resupplied these marines. if they are in a situation where they cannot get the supplies via the road. we will take it down and raise supply from the air. >> how long as the flight? >> it should take is an up -- over an hour to get down there. >> is this mission dangerous? >> it can be. today the threat should be fairly low. we are not anticipating any activity. we always wear a helmet and flak vest just in case. -- and flights vests just in case. we do everything to mitigate the threat in keep it safe. >> the afghanistan war has been
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a big laboratory for fascinating new methods for delivering cargo they had a gps and guided parachutes. you try to get in the vicinity of your troops in need of water or whatever. each of the stuff out the back in the right place. the parachute can steer it to pinpoint location. it is a precision bombing but was supplies instead of bombs. >> basically, the army rigs it so a lease the aircraft and so it will fall down to the troops on the ground to need whatever. >> when opened the door, does gravity pull the load out? >> they will give us an attitude. we come across the drop zone. they go to the right chord in it. they activate our retrievers. they cut it. in pages roll out. >> how accurate?
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>> a very accurate. >> is about how the position the aircraft? >> they will be right over where they want. they can calculate it down to get in right for the troops are. >> how much does it weigh? >> it weighs about 2,200 pounds a piece. >> is it a lot for this aircraft? >> we have eight of their right now. next it will be 16 bundles. >> patel then do not really have what we might think of as an air defense network. they could take a pot shot at your airplane with their rifles. the chances of hitting something flying at high are slim. helicopters are more dangerous because they fly close to the ground. cargo planes are fairly safe. i fear the mountains pose a bigger threat than the caliban -- taliban does.
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>> this holds the cargo. when it comes out, it rides along this cable. the chutes deployed. it absorbs a lot of the impact. when this hits the ground, if it goes just like this. everything survives. >> how big is the sheet? >> nbc 64 ft. in diameter. >> it can slow down -- at least a 64 foot diameter. >> it can slow down. >> yes. >> operations like that happen every day, probably half a dozen of them. it is whether the major way of getting supplies to combat
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troops. >> david axe was in afghanistan in october and november. we produce several videos. you can find them on our website in the search box of our home page, type "axe." >> misery governor -- missouri governors state of the union address. he talks about attracting businesses to the state. from jefferson city, this is 50 minutes. [applause] >> thank you.
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thank you, speaker richard, president shield, leaders callahan, state officials, members of the general assembly, and members of my cabinet. welcome. it is a privilege to be here this evening. i am blessed to have with me missouri's first wife, my wife georgeann. and our two sons, jeremiah and will. one year ago, as they gathered in this very room, and massive
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ice storms struck southern missouri. miles of power lines went down, plunging tens of thousands of people into bitter cold and darkness. i will never whoops forget what assault in the days and weeks to follow. everywhere i went, people of every color and creed were joining hands to help their neighbors. they brought blankets and home cook to mills. and they came a chain saws and trucks. they turned school gyms and church basements into havens of warmth and safety. they did not ask how anyone voted. they did not care who was rich or poor. they came together in a crisis. that is what the people of missouri do. [applause]
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that is a powerful lesson for us here tonight. the worst of times brings out the best in us. when the people of missouri joined hands and work together, we can accomplish anything. that makes me proud of our state and proud to be your governor. tonight our thoughts and prayers go out to the people of haiti who are suffering in the tragic aftermath of the massive earthquake on january 12. there are many ways missouri people can help. i encourage you to go to our website, i have focus my energies on one thing since i took office,
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turning this economy around. our mission is clear. we must keep the jobs we have and create thousands more. we must build a granite foundation for missouri's future growth. we must balance the budget without raising taxes. i am not sure we will need a second version on that one. i will address the challenges ahead of us, highlight the opportunities we must seize now to spur growth and lay out a better future for our state. before i get to recognize the
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brave missourians who have left their families to fight terror around the world. with us tonight is specialist michael thomas, a soldier with the government. he was serving with the guard in afghanistan when his convoy was hit by a suicide bomber in march 2009. he sustained a direct hit from the blast for -- blast. for his sacrifice, he was awarded the purple heart. i commend you for your service to our state and country. you represent every man and woman who has ever fought for our freedom and liberties in every time and on every field of battle. specialist thomas, on their behalf, please, stand in except
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the gratitude of your service. [applause] -- stands and accept the gratitude of your service. [applause] thank you. america's finest, right in the heartland. every action we take in 2009 and every action we will take in 2010 is set against the global forces that constrain our nation's economy. that is the nature of the complex world we live in.
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our most pressing economic challenge is creating jobs, seizing economic and is too important to be sidetracked. that would be traitress put in as by the people. we also need to take the longer view. we need to be wise stewards of the blessing. in everything we do we must put our differences aside. we must put missouri first. i am an optimist by nature. nothing i have seen this year has diminished my optimism. my division of the future is colored by my faith in the
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resourcefulness and determination of the people of missouri. i want the little girl sunday cracked the code of cancer a product of missouri's goes. i want the little boy to -- this is the future i see. to reach a, i want missouri to be first in job creation first in education, first and innovation, first in quality of life and first in leading this nation to recovery.
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everywhere i have travelled, i've heard the same refrain from businesses large and small give this the tolls help astray in the workers and we will do the rest. last year, our bi-partisan jobs bill helped put more of these tools in place. we ramped up financial incentives for businesses that offered good jobs and health insurance. and we focused state resources on targeted, fast-track training programs to prepare a workforce ready to step into those jobs. let me give you a few examples of our success. express scripts in st. louis, used missouri build incentives to expand here, rather than pennsylvania. now it's building a huge, automated facility for filling medical prescriptions. and it will create nearly 300 jobs paying an average wage of more than $40,000 a year. mclane, a grocery distribution
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company owned by warren buffett, used state incentives to build a large new facility in republic that will create 250 full-time jobs with good wages. if warren buffett is bullish on missouri, it's good for all of us. smith electric vehicles makes all-electric, zero-emission trucks. it's building a new plant in kansas city using our quality jobs incentives. that plant will create 200 jobs, and pump millions of dollars into the local economy. and the list goes on. while we were helping large employers, we didn't forget about the small businesses that are a mainstay of missouri's economy.
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we eliminated the franchise tax for 16,000 small businesses like kelley's furniture in kirksville, so they could expand and add jobs. we also started a small business loan program. one of those loans went to beth daniels, who owns a company in eureka that makes educational games. last year, beth was worried she wouldn't have enough games in stock to fill holiday orders. so she used her loan to build up inventory and hire another employee. please welcome one of the show-me state's budding entrepreneurs, beth daniels. job-creation initiatives only succeed if there are trained workers ready to step into those jobs. training people. last fall, we began implementing our caring for missourians initiative to train more missourians for careers in high- demand health care fields - including nursing and dentistry, optometry and medical technology. over the next two years, we'll be enrolling at least 1,300 additional students in these programs at our two- and four-year colleges, and preparing these students to meet our state's critical health care needs. we also put more money into it
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did in helping our state health care needs to help dislocated workers retraining get back into the job market fast. it is clear that our key business instances are bearing fruit. much more needs to be done. that is why my top legislative priority is my 2010 jobs plan. jobs plan. it contains three key components. first, we must leverage every tool and tactic to help loyal missouri businesses thrive. second, we must outrun and outfox our rivals to recruit new high-tech companies to missouri. and third, we must train a workforce that's ready-to-roll, and second-to-none.
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the missouri first initiative is my loyalty program for businesses that are already here. they'll go to the head of the line for financial incentives to help expand plants or payrolls. we'll give an extra bump to businesses that have been in missouri longer than five years. after all, these are the companies who have given generations of missourians steady paychecks. they're also the folks who paid the taxes that built our roads, our schools and our parks. given missouri's need to create jobs quickly, helping loyal businesses accelerate their growth just may be the smartest investment we can make - with the fastest return. [applause] as your governor, i'll continue to push hard to recruit new businesses to missouri. and make no mistake: i've got a competitive streak. that brings me to the second
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part of my jobs plan, the missouri science and innovation reinvestment act: mosira. missouri is already home to 1,000 biological science companies. this is an area where we can add muscle to existing strength. mosira will reinvest a small part of the taxes paid by existing bio-tech firms in missouri, to recruit new ones. it will create a stable pool of funds to increase access to capital. and it will help turn scientific breakthroughs into commercial successes. we want our bio-tech companies to grow because that creates more jobs. but just as important are the corollaries of that growth: a culture of excellence and collaboration, a forum where brilliant minds find kindred spirits, a hotbed of ideas that spark innovation, and a nexus of risk and reward, where start- ups thrive.
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synbiotics is a perfect example of how this synergy works to missouri's advantage. synbiotics is a global leader in animal health. a couple of years ago, its president and ceo, paul hays, decided to move the corporate headquarters and research labs from san diego to kansas city. paul says there are five reasons why he brought his business to missouri: first, the opportunities for synergy and collaboration with other companies and scientists in missouri's booming animal health corridor. second, proximity to his customers. third, financial incentives from missouri, platte county and kansas city. fourth, missouri's outstanding work ethic; and last, but not least, paul's a mizzou grad, class of '83. all i can add to that is welcome back, and "go tigers."


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