tv Washington Journal CSPAN July 16, 2011 7:00am-10:00am EDT
and in the world of the debt talks, both president and congressional leaders have been stressing compromise on the debt ceiling discussions. the president looking for cuts with revenue from taxes, republicans looking for cuts with no revenue coming from taxes. with that in mind, should the president and congressional leaders compromise on their ideals for the debt ceiling talks? and how? if so? here's how you can weigh in this morning. dial in. if you want to do that we can take those calls momently. e-mail available to you, too. you can join us via twitter.
as we talk about the world of compromise when it comes to the debt ceiling discussions, there are three proposals as it were on the table as it stands right now. they are highlighted in many papers this morning. the "wall street journal" has this chart. it's the president's grand bargain as aen option saying that the president wants to reduce deficits by $4 trillion by slowing spending growth and ending some tax breaks and bush-era tax cuts. so boost by a $1 trillion he would cap or cust, make major changes tomaker, maked, and possibly social security. many republicans say they won't raise taxes. the g.o.p.'s cut cap and balance proposal would cut spending, install statutory spending cap and pass a constitutional amendment requiring the president to
submit a balanced budget each year. a test vote scheduled next week on this. the prospects zero. if it passes the house, it is unlikely to go anywhere in the democratic-controlled senate. and senator mcconnell and reid's plan b you have probably heard about that would allow president obama to raise the debt ceiling in three increments if he proposes offsetting spending cuts. it would likely take two thirds majority in both houses. would create a mission of lawmakers to craft a deficit reduction plan. the plan would be subject to an up or down vote. and the prospects for this rising. could run into some resistance but may be the only option on the table to avoid a debt default. as far as those three proposals are concerned. the same story by says this,
too, as far as republicans are concerned. the g.o.p. plan seeks to approve spending cuts without tax increases. it is a confrontational move designed to please the party's base but one that is unlikely to succeed in the senate. its defeat could force all parties to i'm brace a separate approach. what he is working towards happening. now, what that would require would be some shared sacrifice and a balanced approach that says we are going to make significant cuts in domestic spending. and i have already said that i am willing to take down domestic spending to the lowest percentage of our overall economy since dwight
ineshoumplet it also requires cuts in defense spending. and i have said that in addition to the $400 billion that we have already cut from defense spending we are willing to look for hundreds of billions more. it would require us taking on health care spending and that includes looking at medicare and finding ways that we can stabilize the system so that it is available not just for this generation but for future generations. and it would require revenues. it would require even as we are asking the person who needs a student loan or the senior citizen or people veterans who are trying to get by on a disability check, even as we are trying to make sure that all those programs are affordable, we are also saying to folks like myself that can afford it that we are able and willing to do a little bit more. that millionaires and
billionaires can afford to do a little bit more. that we can close corporate loopholes so that oil companies aren't getting unnecessary tax breaks or that corporate jet owners aren't getting unnecessary tax breaks. in the world of compromise on the discussion here's the headline from the "new york times" this morning. again, the notion of compromise and should it happen between the parties involved in these discussions. as far as the ideals they're looking for when it comes to debt ceiling discussions. here are the numbers again.
first call on the notion of compromise and should it happen. cleveland, hoy on our democrat's line. bill, good morning. go ahead. caller: yes. good morning, pedro. i think that politicians have it all wrong. the actual problem is our economic format. i think we have to take a look at post-industrial globalized free trade over the past 30 years and see has it worked or not? do we like the results it has given us, and trying to balance a budget with this economic format i think is fruitle. i think we need a whole new economic system, a system based on what president eisenhower did when he created nasa and the sbrate highway system. but the system as it stands right now brings us these discussions of what we are talking about today. what do you think about the
idea of compromise on either side when it comes to these issues especially as we have this deadline coming nup? >> it's not going to work because the system itself has failed. host: campbell, california. on our republican line. randy, go ahead. caller: i mean, the poll that i have been looking at says that 67% of the american people don't want the debt ceiling raised. most people are concerned about debt enslavement of the next two or three generations of americans more than they are worried about defaulting. host: so what does that mean as far as the discussions are concerned? caller: it just means we shouldn't raise taxes. there's no reason to raise taxes in this environment. host: off of twitter.
you can join us off of twitter. victoria, texas, independent line. john. caller: yes. the lock-step of the republicans and democrats are ridiculous because i mean, both parties are to fault and it's not just a couple of years. it's been 30 years. and i noticed up here in -- up in pennsylvania, my family around here in texas are all upset about this shacka fata, he's a representative from pennsylvania. he wants to tax everybody 1% on their checking account. now, that is totally ridiculous. if he can't find cuts in the budget, then they're going after more taxes and they keep
spending. they think when they go to washington all they are supposed to do is spend our money. and we have got no control over it. we never see what our representatives and senators are doing up there. we're too busy with barbecues and internet and everything else. until the people of this country wake up and see that they have been spending us in a hole for years, this country is going into the gutter. >> the two sides currently debating this issue. what do you think about their approaches and should compromise come from either one or both? caller: i think they both ought to quick this bickering and start looking into the budget like the all of this homeland security that they are wasting money on, all of this airport security, all of this garbage that they are making people millions of dollars off of at
the taxpayers' expense. the poor and the retired people , they want to tax them 1% on everything, every check that they write? let's get real here people. host: san jose, california, you are next. kathy, democrat's line. caller: hi. i was just thinking that i think that they shouldn't be giving the president such a hard time. because after all, if we default, i mean, he's talking about interest rates and everything is going to be going up and we'll lose our credit rating. so i think that the republicans need to kind of compromise a little bit with the president. i've never seen them do this to any other president before. i could be wrong. but i really think that they need to compromise a little bit with the president.
they need to give him a little bit leeway instead of giving him such a hard time. it seems everything he's trying to do they won't let him. and i think we all know why and i won't say it but we all know why. host: as far as years of compromise when it comes to these discussions, because you're talking about republicans, what should republicans be willing to compromise? caller: i think they should be willing to raise the taxes on the people who are making a little bit more money even on me. i'm disabled, i don't get very much money but i'm willing to pay a little bit more for our country to be a little bit more stable. host: similar thought this morning by shorty fuse.
maryland, republican line is next. janet, good morning. caller: good morning. i'm wondering why in the world are they trying to raise taxes when they can find other ways and other places to get the money? you have people on welfare with six children. my god, you could watch -- they have too much time on their hands these people, they send them over to social security from welfare to try and just displace everyone. and people cannot make it. and taxing the elderly, come on now, they've done paid they're on retirement and they're wanting to be taxed? this is ridiculous. people in congress need to get their act together and start -- stop passing and start looking to cut across the line,
straight across the line. two children should be all there is on welfare. there are people having six children on welfare and getting money. and going from state to state and getting money for all these children. host: couple of things from the paper this morning. making mention of rupetrt murdock in light of the resignation of two executives. one from dow jones and one running the news of the world. here's how it looks in the financial times. other papers covering it as well. in the "washington journal" in the business section, it has a story saying that big mortgages are back.
you may have remembered those from a few years ago done in the united states to test the fiscal capabilities of u.s. banks. this takes a look at european banks. but the one story from new york this morning looks at city baverbing looking at their profits, surging 24% to $3.3 billion. city results mirrors jp morgan. we have been talking about the notion of comfroms when it comes to discussions about the debt and should congress members of the congress republicans primarily as far as these discussions go, and the president, compromise on their ideals when it comes to debt talks? all available for you to join
us. e-mail and twitter as well. new jersey. go ahead. caller: good morning. i would just like to say that i wish that the congress would do like the president said and try to put aside their issues just this once. so that the country can be saved economically. i'm so tired of the posturing that they continue to do in the house of representatives, the congress, and they fight so much with the president. i think that everybody needs to come together for the greater good of the american people. which is the issue. host: off of twitter this morning adds this. madison, wisconsin. good morning. independent line. caller: good morning.
thank you for taking my call this morning. it's really a no-brainer. definitely congress should compromise and they should look at the examples of other aspects of american society like our military, like our first responders. what if these people have the attitude of congress that no matter what, i'm not going to compromise with you because i have a different point of view? we've got to learn to come together as americans. we have troops overseas and them and their families are sacrificing every day for whatever reason people might think they are still sacrificing and working together whether it's a good thing or a bad thing they're still working together. and congress has to work together and they should compromise. but what we have to do as americans is we have to demand that they solve our problems. the one thing, the three things that we have to demand or the three things that we have to
expect is for them to work together. and the way that they can do that, the way we can demand is we have to have term limits, we have to take money out of campaign financing and we also have to -- we have to have term limits, take money out of campaign financing and we have to change thed to. host: and were there lessons learned from your own state this year? i know it was different because it dealt with unions and things along that line. but talk about your state's experiences with efforts of compromise coming from the efforts of your governor. >> it's been a very tumulttuss time for wisconsin politics. the pendulum has swung one way and now back the other way. but what we have to do is just come together as concerned citizens and put aside special interests. of course there are going to be
differences in the parties, differences in people's opinions on how things should be run. but the main thing we have to look at is we all have to come together as americans. host: bull head arizona. ron republican line. good morning. caller: yes. i just want to state a couple of things. i study with cotch's nephew at the university and he stated the best thing i got out of that class for the semester was $1 of whatever the federal government says for that day. and another thing. obama had a tough time coming in. they knew that it was going to be a hard climb up. and if he could overturn the country he would be the star quarterback. but it looks like he's not doing it. >> so what does that mean for current discussions going on? caller: i just don't -- it looked like we have a recession every 12 years or in those times. look at the 80's, 90's, and now
the late 2010s. host: william off of twitter adds this. kentucky rob, democrat's line. caller: yes. i just want to comment on the part where, about medicaid. you know, medicaid doesn't need to be messd with a whole lot but it does need to be looked at. because of the way that they do things and the doctors and the hospitals offices. i was in recently in february for a gunshot wound and they took care of it and then after that they had to take me back in and redo it but it went back on the second time. and my question to them why didn't they put it back on the first time to take care of the problem? instead of having to go through the process twice and then bill
medicaid twice. host: so when medicare comes up, what do you think about that of the negotiations when it comes to dealing with the debt? caller: well, i think -- well, i think there's too much waste. there is a lot of waste in medicaid and medicare. host: napa valley, california. joe, democrat's line. caller: good morning. look, you know, every time barack says to do this, do that, all the republicans will mainly boehner or can'ter or mitch mcconnell says no. mcconnell already said a couple of years ago, all my main job is to make sure barack is a one-time president flt all those guys up there are multi-millionaires. of course they aren't going to do nothing. they just want to keep on
keeping all of the people from middle-class down, keep on putting them down and putting them down, lying and lying, manipulating. host: so does the president need to compromise? ? caller: look. he has. what are you talking about? every time he says something -- when he agrees with them on doing something and then they say no, so no matter what he does, what he says, everybody, the media especially, fox channel always manipulating people. host: the house speaker john boehner on this topic as far as setting discussions and things along that nature, added his thoughts yesterday as far as where the process is and the nature of compromise. here's what he had to say. >> we're in the fourth quarter here. time and again republicans have
offered and i think it's time for the democrats to get serious as well. we asked the president to lead. we asked him to put forward a plan. not a speech, a real plan. and he hasn't. we will. host: again if you're joining us for the next 20 minutes or so we are talking about compromise when it comes to debt talks and should congress and the president compromise on debt. if you think so tell us why. if you think not tell us why. and we'll take those discussions on just a moment. you'll meet vermont's governor in our last segment at 9:15 today talks politically in salt lake when it comes to endorsement in the 2012 race. the headline is that he will not endorse a candidate in the primary process. adding this.
maryland. bonnie, we're talking about the nature of compromise. do you think congress or the president should compromise on ideals? caller: good morning. to me these politicians are such hypocrites. they talk about tax the rich, well where do you think they're getting their campaign funds from? it's surely not the middle class. and obama is the biggest hypocrite of all. he, when he travels for his trade, he takes these corporate c.e.o.s with him and we pay for it. he can take in millions while the middle clatsdz are getting crooked. host: so what that means for debt discussions then? guest: it just -- cut back some. do you see any of the politicians taking a cut? no. the first thing they want is social security cuts. and then they want commission for that, they just spend $8
million in bonuses for their help. host: congress, this is off of twitter. new york next up, douglas, independent line. caller: good morning. i'm not here to argue back and forth about who is responsible. my only question is when social security and medicare, if i'm not misunderstanding, it was originally founded, it wasn't founded to put -- it was founded for people who actually worked. and if you look at what they did to social security and medicare, i'm not beating anybody up but there's a lot of disabled people on both programs. that is why the program has
ballooned the way it has. and stars give and take, every time you get close to retiring it seems they raise the age and it makes it more and more. to some poicht you're never going to get out of it what you put into it because you aren't going to live long enough. host: do you see give and take being part of this process? caller: i think it's got to be a give and take by the rich and the middle class. everybody should understand that nothing in this country is free. this country wasn't built on anything free. but in the same token is i think they ought to take a lot of things they pour into social security and medicare because they don't know what else to do with it out of it. social security should be just for people who pay social security tax. medicare should be the same thing. now, if you want to give people with disabilities advantages, well then that's when you could do almost like they have a medical card. but that shouldn't come out of
new york is next. caller: i have two points i would like to make. one, there are two pay rols in this country. one pay roll is made by the private industry and the other pay roll is by the federal government. let us make them both average equal. that is, at the present time the private industry averages about $40,000. let the federal government reduce their pay roll such that it would be $40,000 to them equally. now, as far as compromise is concerned, the story of the bear and the hunter in the woods. the bear said to the hunter,
you don't want to shoot me. let us compromise. and so the hunter said all right. what's a compromise? well, the bear says what do you want? the man said i want a fur coat. the bear said i'm hungry. they compromised. the man got his fur coat and the bear got something to eat. the bear ate the hunter. i think that's what the federal government is doing to us. thank you. caller: host: from the detroit free press, on twitter, senator
hatch also weighing in on the notion of a bludget amendment. here's what he has to say. >> a balanced budget amendment is essential for our economy and our debt is a confrontational issue. this would put us on a path to fiscal health and would prevent this white house or any future white house from forcing this
debt on the american people. the only reason this administration doesn't want a constitutional amendment is because they want to keep spending the american people's money. and the only reason congressional democrats would refuse to pass it is because they know the people of this country would rise up and quickly ratify it. a balanced budget amendment makes sense. its time has more than come. now congress must act. >> off of twitter adds this. alabama, democrat's line. larry, good morning. caller: good morning. first of all, i would like to let the people know that congress is the main body that propets money not the president. it's congress. now, when the president went ahead and compromised with
congress over this extended unemployment deal and gave the richest people in this united states tax breaks, that was a compromise. but when it came to the veterans, the foot soldiers the backbones of this here united states, and these wealthy people, older people in this united states who are poor who do not have no more than the wealthy people have, they cannot compromise. there's something wrong with that picture. when you cannot compromise for the veterans of this united states but you can compromise for the wealthiest people in this world, there's something wrong with that picture. host: airline fees are the discussion in the "wall street journal" this morning as far as federal look into some of the nature of where the fees come from. the transportation department's
move would require airlines to supply far more detailed reports on thou they derive their revenue. pennsylvania, judy on our independent line. caller: first, i would like to point out that there is a difference in independents which are usually referred to as a homogeneous group. there is independents that fall between democrats and republicans. and the independents that fall
between republicans and the liberties. and they really should not be lumped together because when politicians talk about appealing to or meeting the needs of those two groups, they're at opposite ends. then the next thing i would like to point out is that i fall more into the libertarian group and i really home they don't reach a compromise because i do not want to see our debt limit increased. i want to see it actually reduced tremendously. so i would say cut spending. that's basically no to increasing taxes, no to increasing the debt ceiling. and just cut spending. we don't have a revenue problem we have a spending problem. so that's what we need to do. and if the government can't figure out the way to do it responsibly, i think the american people could make lots
of suggestions. but that would be what to do. and if there's a crisis with social security, military pay, et cetera, it is the president who is going to have control of how dollars that will be cut cannot default. honor our debt to the citizens who have paid in and earned their money. host: two stories from the "washington post." one, several papers making notes that the u.s. has given recognition to a libyan rebel,
if you go above this story, there's this photo and it shows, according to the caption, libyan rebels put together spare parts to make launchers. there you see the finished product. as you look at that we'll go back for the next few minutes as far as our discussions are concerned about the nature of compromise when it comes to debt. vermont, die ann on our republican line. go ahead.
caller: thanks for c-span, the best reality show on tv. awesome. i think after listening to everybody talking i had something else in my head. but for the last 40 years the government has controlled the education system in the united states and frankly it's resulted in civic i had i don't seey. there is a lot that the government does and we've let it gow mostly because we didn't know any better. so i think that really the biggest problem we have is ignorance. we don't know what the president's power is. we don't know what the congress' power is. we don't know our own power as we the people. so i do think that instead of opening the new congress next time with the constitution they should open it with the charges against king george. i think it would make a lot of sense to see just how close this government is to what we fought for then. at risk of running on and on
and on, thank you very much for c-span. host: just before you go, i just want to let you know that your governor is going to be our last guest. so i just want to make sure you were watching when that time comes. caller: thank you very much. host: next call from kentucky. katherine, democrat's line. caller: good morning. it's been interesting listening to the previous caller. i very much would like to see compromise. although i'm a democrat, republican david dergen put my position well one time. he said i'm a passionate moderate and that's kind of the way i feel. i would cheerfully go back to the clinton tax years and i think the middle class so to speak tax cut of the 2000's.
my husband was on the salary at the time and it made a $7 difference between one two weeks and the next two weeks. and i did not find that to be good enough for the country we have now to resolve. i would pay that money back out of my check now and i would like to think that the people who make more out of this country would realize that they wouldn't have made this money in any other country and be able to come to this country's aid. we all need each other here. the poor need the rich and the rich need the poor. and i would like to see the republicans and the democrats become americans just long enough to make decisions. i feel taxes should be raised for everyone to some degree. i am approaching retirement age and i am willing to make some small accommodation there because people who have planned on this all their lives should have it.
but whatever accommodation is made needs to be made in a moderate way. if we take slow steps, if there are mistakes we can pull back quickly. as to those who think well, we have too big a budget, look how small the budget was and we all got by in the 50's and 60's. unless you're talking about pruning living people from the population, there's more of us now and the budget is going to increase. we need to be realistic and we need to live in the real world. host: leave a thought there. one more call. felix, independent line. caller: i lo your name. i think it's better than felix. host: you're in luck. the next guy we're getting on is named pedro too. what's your thought? caller: well, i think your listings on the phone numbers,
i think that's labeled wrong. i think it should be socialists, conservative, and people who don't have a clue. and i called in on the independent line because you didn't have a space for conservative. so but i think this is a classic tite nick battle between socialists, and conservatives and we have a big choice in 2012 and the conservative should defeat the socialist. it's for the future of the country and i think it boils down that. host: last live call we'll take before we let you know. i wanted to let you know about the library of congress presentation. along the lines of what we have done in years past with the white house and congress, this takes you in the library of congress and gives you details and insight into how it operates its mission and things you would not see anywhere else. you can see that monday. at 8:00 will be on c-span.
you can also cash that on c-span 3 and c-span.org. you can find more information on our website. that's c-span.org. don't forget, we have a facebook page as well in which you can weigh in on discussions that we are having here on the air but you can continue the conversation, so to speak. facebook.com/c-span. and again that's discussions about what is going on. here's for the rest of the program. coming up we're going do hear about an update on what is known as operation fast and furious. you may know it as that program that takes a look at guns that end up in mexico. some new developments this week about that program and will be joining us to talk about that. up next, where are the jobs in the united states? we'll look at the current job picture where jobs are being
modern technology reveals that jefferson used the word subject before replacing it with the word citizen. >> this weekend on american history tv on c-span 3, american art facts visits the library of congress. author christopher moran on his new book, classified, secrecy in the state and post-war britain. and the professionor looks at civil rights in the early 1990s. get the complete schedule. >> live from sthracks, the nation's governors look at the lessons of 9/11 and freedman
talks about competitiveness and the economy. the national governors association, this weekend, on line on c-span radio and on c-span. >> i'm very interested in what i call disappearing america. america that may not be here 25 years from now. >> for 30 years carol has traveled the united states documenting the country through her photo lens. follow her story. sunday night on quanchquanch. it's a prelude to the documentary, the library of congress. >> it's all available to you on t vision, radio, on line.
and find our content any time through c-span's video library. and we take it on the road with our digital bus and local content vehicle. it's washington your way. the c-span networks. now available more than 100 million homes. provided as a public service. "washington journal" continues. host: we're joined by pedro of reuters. as you look at the united states, are there areas where jobs are being created? guest: it's thin pickings these days. it's moff or a story of which places are being created. until a few months ago, you had kind of government-based hubs that were essentially. d.c. is an obvious one. austin, texas is another. strangely businessmark north dakota has the lowest
unemployment rate in the nation. host: so they're job hubs? >> ye but based upon government that is now withering. and because of federal level that sharp spending cuts are forth coming. so even those plays are seeing renuds job loss which were supporting pay rolls is now become a drag. and so that's a pretty disturbing trend. >> if you take a look at the map of the united states rrks there sectors of the country gee graphically that have better chances of job hubs as it will? >> you have a huge divide because you have kind of very high end jobs in the usual places that you think of like california, silicon valley or new york city or washington, d.c. high paid, high-skilled work.
but across much of the nation the jobs that are being created are low end service jobs that have a high turn yove rate. has very low job security and weak pay. people are having a difficult time making ends meet. there are fewer jobs as the unemployment rates show. there's simply not enough jobs for the number of people that are looking. in fact, the latest -- there's a report from the labor department called jolt which is the jobs -- jobs -- host: i have it. job openings and turnover survase. guest: thank you. and it shows that there are almost 5 workers for every opening available. so that gist you a sense of just how tough the competition is. host: as far as industry you mentioned a couple. how are things such as manufacturing doing in these job hubs where people build
things and ship them to other places? caller: manufacturing is telling us a scary story right now because the industrial sector, if we go back a little bit to the financial crisis, the last kilowatter of 2008 was the most severe industrial downturn globally since the great depression. the graphs are stunning. and when you had that, you also had the recovery because the hole was so deep, the recovery was pretty strong as well. so that was kind of leading the recovery that started in the summer of 2009 but lately indicators like the really important national manufacturing survey from the institute of supply management is showing reduced activity. and you start getting indstraling production data that's pretty weak. and that's bad because even though it's only about one-sixth of economic activity, it is still a very important leading indicator of the economy. it behaves in kiped of normal
patterns. so if you start to see renewed job losseses in manufacturing, which we all have, is frightening. host: as far as when we look at job hubs, so to speak, when you look at those hubs how do ripple effect like housing markets and those things, are there connections between how a job hub operates and how those things operate as well as people staying in their homes? generally the economy good in those areas? host: guest: i think actually the concept of a job hub might be a good way for both the government and the private sector to think of how to create a solution for the job problem. and the follow sentence. if you have growth in a certain area, you're going to have a positive circle where more people are attracted to it. and so places that create these opportunities that of course it
doesn't come out of thin air. a sector has to locate their weather. it's a big defense company being present there or big technology firm or education center. universities are great job hubs and you have a lot of small university towns where the employment structure is based around universitieses. so those are kind of pockets of hope but the overall pick suris relatively grim. host: where are the jobs? from reuters, join us for the next until 8:30. and here's how we divided the lines. if you want to call in. if you are employed and you want to talk about the job market in your area, the numbers are on the bottom of your screen.
and if you stopped looking altogether and talk about the job market in your area and talk about why you stopped looking. you can join us off of e-mail and you can join us off of twitter as well. are people moving into these job hubs at a more frequent rate? guest: the data doesn't really suggest that and there is a problem of the housing market does create an impedment to people moving because of course a lot of people have underwater mornls, they have lost money, they are having trouble sellings them. so if you are a homeowner, relocating might not be as easy as it was when you could offload a house in a week or
two. so reporting is in a national level. you see sort of small phenomena like sectors that are growing or the health care sector, which is kind of an obvious one because you have an aging population. you have a growing need for health care, and technology. which another concern that there's a bubble in technology and well have a revival of c.e.o.s of company where you don't know exactly where the money is going to come from. if you have skills you can find employment there but again, it's a situation where we haven't trained many computer scientists and engineers. so there's those particular sectors that are creating jobs sometimes have a shortage of available labor where they actually need to import workers. host: any received to suggest getting training and going nootsdz others to take advantage of these job market
perks so to speak? guest: those transitions can be really tough. one of the things that i as a layperson regarding the construction sector, for instance, thought when the crisis was first happening, a lot of the joblessness were of course in residential construction. and so i thought we have supposedly huge infrastructure needs in this country. so why can't construction workers who were losing jobs in housing move into that sent snr and the more i spoke to experts they told me it's not that simple. it's a very different set of skills, different set of tools. so the whole retooling concept takes time. and without an overarching structure where people -- people are completely left to their own devices. i know people and i have friends who have lost jobs and have been looking for them and they'll nail out hundreds of resumes and not get a single phone call back. and it becomes this self-defeating process and frustration.
if we had a coordinated channel without being ideological about it without saying this should be done by the government or private sector, but both coming together in a practical result oriented way. to have a hot line that people can call and say look, you can get training for this. people can be channeled to the place that have the most need. and i feel we don't really have a plan in place. are host: our guest, the economic correspondent for reuters. worked for 2009. has his bachelors from tufert of chicago and london chicago of first call is from myrtle beach, south carolina. tony, who is employed. and tony before you go on to your statement could you paint a picture as far as the job market in your area? caller: in our area it's not bad at all. we're in a service area like
you were talking about. there's no construction here any more and we don't have any factories or anything. but like you say, it's a really service industry and we've been in like a bubble for the last couple of years. life hasn't been as hard as what i've been hearing while listening to c-span. but the comment or the problem that we have here in our area is we've got the jobs. the jobs are here but the jvs of people have taken the jobs. they're bringing in so many of the israelis and the russians and these jobs have all been given to them. my question is what is the deal with that? . .
unemployed for a long time. and i am calling about infrastructure spending. i listened to the reasons from the republicans why it should not be done. in general, one question i have -- have we thrown in the towel in this country? there seems to be a sentiment that we have some wide allow our vacations to erode, we have been giving away tickets for decades, it is very discouraging. i just turned 63 and i am still fit to work, willing to work, want to work. but getting back to a infrastructure spending, it seems to me that the broadest way to affect all states at the same time -- i do not know what values or projects are ready to
go. they may be simple or complex projects that they take a few weeks to perhaps several years. if you have some grasp of that, i would like to know and why it is that these objections rise. i know this spending is the key to the objection, but if we know that $2 trillion is there, if we're not going to improve ports and airports and other things that will be -- like the chinese doing, they are preparing themselves for their next generation. host: let me leave it there. guest: he makes a very good point. anyone who travels at side of this country has a sense that our infrastructure is deteriorating. my parents immigrated to this country in the 1960's and 1970's. they came here because it was the place to be, the place to
get the best education. everything was state of the art. it was the place where all the first inventions came. everything was new. now you go to europe and you have better training, china has better training than we do, they have better roads that we do the less than we do. even poorer and improving economies are putting a lot of money into it. as far as the objections to spending, there is some hypocrisy there. of course, we have done spending on other things. there was a brown university study that found that the cost of the war -- that cumulative cost of the wars in iraq and afghanistan will but did up to -- it will be up to $4.2 trillion. i think it is a very taft common -- apt comment. he said that there may be odd
tricks ready to go. what will act on the fiscal side, when we had the stimulus package, we at $800 billion. and it was a scramble of what to do with the money. why is it that the fiscal authority what do not have a well thought out plan in place that if we hit this level of project -- unemployment, we have these projects ready. the economy would be much more about -- able to rebound. the stimulus, that was not just handouts. these were funds for projects. there's some projects that are short term, but on the infrastructure side, these are certainly large enough -- coda new york city and spend a few days there. you confided up potholes' that need fixing, which employ a lot
of people. host: this is from london of twitter. -- linda a look twitter. guest: that speaks to the declining standard of living that we have in the unemployment market where people take positions where they are vastly overqualified. you have people with master's degrees taking unpaid internships. people with 28 years of experience taking entry-level jobs. it becomes very difficult for the in fridge -- for the entry level people. it is very top. host: pedro da costa of reuters joining us. richard on our line for people who have stopped looking for work. caller: i have a particular question for the economist of the pedros.
do you really think that -- we keep hearing that people are not hiring because of insecurity and the labor market in terms of politics and so on and so forth. my question would be, do you really think that people are not hiring because of that? or are people not hiring because of our economy has gone so efficient with robotics and mechanics that we really do not need any further labor market in the air to do -- we don't need anyone in the labor market to accomplish these things that our society does? in addition to that, in terms of infrastructure and so on, that would simply add to our overall debt unless anyone is brave enough to raise taxes, and no one seems to be brave enough to do that in any meaningful way. i await your response offline. guest: i think there's a certain
amount of truth to what he said. productivity gains, especially in manufacturing, have a contradictory attack. economists tell us, and i will clarify for the caller, i'm a reporter not a economist. i have been falling for many years. it is a mixed blessing when the economist ellis is good for the long term and a standard of living. productivity means that you can do more with less. you can have the same amount of output with fewer workers. but it is up function -- innovating quickly enough or there are things for people to do. -- where there are things for people to do. their ideas that could lead to employment. if we created channels to put these ideas into play, we could
do a lot of great things. host: from e-mailed. she does not specify the business. when it comes to businesses starting over and how they reinvest, are they going through this trend to fix expenses? guest: every business is reinventing itself. my own organization comes to mind. the media world is changing so fast, so i think businesses are doing that. that does not make folks like our last caller very happy. host: have divided our lines freeways. if you are employed, if you are looking, or if you have stopped looking. from topeka, kan., from our line
for those employed. what is the job market in topeka like? caller: you see a little trickle of unemployed, you see things like people exercising quite a bit, but here, it is hard to get on the railway. they do o'hare sampling and a background check. -- a hair sampling in a background check. if you have back alimony or child support, they will not hire you. and they do the sampling like i said. it is hard to get on the railway. you still see the buddy-buddy system here. some of the supervisors even sleep on the job. host: what are the major sources
of industry in topeka? caller: the rail rate is one. -- the railway is one. mars is moving here. you see a lot of big business moving into topeka. i feel for the unemployed, but it is harder to get on to these good jobs, because of the qualifications. yet we are just a tax write-off for the country and then -- for the company and a liability. they seem to be holding back a lot on hiring. they have got the money. they are making money hand over fist. they might not be moving as much of around the area, but the businesses seem to be making quite a bit of money.
they are just holding back to see what the economy is doing, i feel. guest: that is a very good point. the uncertainty factor is grade, that word i am so tired of because we use it so often in journalism. in the last few months, you could not overstate the level of uncertainty. you have the economy in europe that every single week appears to have a new country in crisis. they're the budget crisis is very real. interest rates are spiking as opposed to hear, where the political wrangling leading to the deficit, and then the debt ceiling discussions here prepares the possibility of a ratings downgrade for the united states host: if that happens, what is the connection to the job market? guest: direct and severe and almost unthinkable. the downgrade has so many
ramifications. it would take away the safe haven status of the treasury securities. that means that these benchmark securities would no longer be the benchmark securities. we do not know what would happen because the market would be all over the place. stocks would fall off a cliff. banks would lose a lot of money and we would probably have a new financial crisis on our hand. that would lead to the same sort of mayhem in the wake of 2008. host: 70 on twitter. -- cindy 1 twitter. guest: tech firms are sonnet. the automobile industry was hiring for a bit. government was a huge boon to implement during the bulk of the recovery. now it is trailing off as well.
there are a lot of retail jobs available in the short term. they have high turnover. they do not often pay that well. host: when the unemployment numbers came out last week, the top of the list were jobs being created, the industry at the top was hospitality. it struck me as funny. people often do not have money. guest: that confirms corporate spending. the leisure and hospitality means hotels, and they're not just for vocations. -- vacations. you see them flush with cash as they like to say. so businesses have money to send their people around. host: lawrence, massachusetts, on the unemployment line. cindy.
caller: when you have unemployment that is this high, along with bringing our troops back from the wars, it is a very scary picture in terms of being unemployed. jobs do not help people who are 55 like me. what is to be done to get america working again? my thought on that is we have these corporations sitting on his record high profits and failing to hire in our country, at least. why are we only giving tax breaks to the job creators who are creating jobs here in america and tax them as they were under clinton? and giving up my unemployment pay, i am contributing towards a
public jobs program like what fdr did. host: what did you do before you became unemployed? caller: my last job was working for the senses. -- census, a crew leader assistant. it was a relatively good job for my area of the country. and i have not found anything cents. host: tell us about your looking process, how much time you spend on that. caller: i have gone to every single job help seminar offered at my local career centers. i have tried to get into retraining. i was not accepted.
and i look at my papers and i go online and i do what i can do. but there are just no jobs. host: thank you for sharing. guest: i really feel for the caller because he makes many good points. the show already concept needs to be expanded. she made it -- the shovel ready concept needs to be expanded. we can look at sectors that need people, especially the health- care industry. if we have regular training programs for nurses, which is supposed to be in shortage, and jobs like that, then we could create a channel for folks to create new employment. as far as a jobs program, the point about the troops coming back is very important. it adds all whole layer to the labor force, a whole other
population coming back home. if that actually lift the unemployment rate further. host: we spoke of the last couple of weeks about the trade deals to be signed and the connection he brings to what it would do to jobs. what is the likelihood that those deals can bring jobs? guest: small potatoes if it does. they create jobs in the countries that have the cheaper labor. maybe a trade deal with korea and central america are those that he has lined up. costa rica is not going to get us out of this right. we need something much bigger than this small trade package with individual countries. host: ben bernanke also talk about jobs -- talked about jobs.
>> the pace of the expansion so far this year has been modest. after increasing at an annual rate of 2.75%, gdp rose at a 2% rate at the first half of this year. incoming data suggest that the pace of recovery remains soft in to the spring. at the same time, the unemployment rate which appeared to be on a downward trajectory has moved back above 9%. in part, the weaker than expected economic performance appears to be the result of several factors that are likely to be temporary. notably, the run-up in prices of energy, especially gasoline and food, has reduced come -- consumer purchasing power. host: energy, gas, and food. guest: he is talking about factors that he hopes, please god, he hopes are temporary. the prospect of the recent
unemployed have diminished, essentially stagnating. the rate is a risk for the second half because consumer spending might be stifled by the lack of jobs. another temporary factor is the earthquake in japan that disrupted automotive production. even now, the fed forecast was revised at the june meeting. they revised it does 2.7%, sharply downward. even that last revision looked too optimistic. it means that they could take further action down the line. host: a couple more minutes pedro da costa da, the economic correspondent for reuters. donna, go ahead. caller: until we change the way
that the campaigns are financed and get all this lobbying money out, the job market is never going to improve because we cannot get trade bills that benefit american workers. secondly, the rich and powerful have shipped most of the jobs overseas. now they want people to have more money to buy their products, so they want us to also pay for all this infrastructure spending, which will make the debt even bigger and make the whole situation worse. if it were not for bill clinton and bush jr. think that these free trade deals past, we would not have all of these problems in the marketplace. made in china, it does not matter if it is a toaster or clothes or dishes, you name it. it is made in china. they have sold our country out. talk about it honestly. host: before you go, what do you do for a living?
caller: i work in a doctor's office and i have been watching c-span for 20 years. i know what is going on. host: talk about the job market in st. louis. caller: no city is doing that great in my opinion. it is not doing any good. guest: we have some very smart carlos here. if they can make policy, we would be better off than letting the politicians do it. she makes a series of good points. trade deals that san jobs abroad to not been the fuss -- do not benefit us in the long run. all the sudden we wake up and are surprised that there are no jobs here, very discouraging. guest: absolutely. i do not think it happens as
much as it should. some small community initiatives here and there, but no regular channel. it should be the kind of thing where the sat, every student knows about it in you can go to this place in just do it. it should not take a year of job search is to come out with one program that you may or may not qualify for. one caller was trying to get retraining and was not accepted. why not? how could you not be qualified for retraining? you need training. aside a line for people who of stopped looking. -- have stopped looking. the next call on that line, los angeles, california, bill, good morning. caller: we had the aerospace and
aeronautical capital of the world. everything function. it was on track and dynamic, all the related support industries cap 85 economy. the high schools could graduate skilled wellbore, tool list, machinists, draftsmen, you name it. all of the businesses were related to that key industry, skilled manufacturing. then they started to disappear, and i do not know where win. now my machine shop sells sugar cane and pinatas. when i had to go back construction, that was a massive shock. it is just a joke comparatively. codes and standards, specifications have to be maintained. construction was just a sham as far as i was concerned.
a carnival, living in a circus. host: are you employed right now? caller: no. construction just shut down completely after 2008. i could not find anything. i lost my i say -- eyesight. even if i could find a job, i could not perform. guest: thank you, bill. that tells us the sad tale of america's disappearance of a last 30 years. you could tell that story in so many parts of the country. one of the things important is the sense of policy. you remember the sense of urgency that we had in 2008 when hank paulson and ben bernanke came to the hill and said, look, guys, this is it.
if we do not give the money to the banks now, we're going to fall off the cliff. they managed to do it. i wish the policymakers on the fiscal and monetary sides would sing or to bring that sense of urgency to the unemployment problem. it underlies the financial system ultimately. if we focused on jobs first and banks separate, he might get something done. host: the president might create jobs council. what is that? guest: ironically it was led by as serial jobs exporter. jeff immelt. his company exported thousands of jobs. host: berkeley springs, west virginia, on a line for those unemployed. carl, go ahead.
caller: i think that government regulations have a lot to do with killing jobs. small business starting up, they cannot afford to hire lawyers to make sure that they are complying with all the government regulations. it is the lawyers that are killing us. but doctors have to prescribe all kinds of tests to protect themselves against lawsuits. i was watching the show the other day, this guy was doing a paper mask used to paint with, and it had to be stamped on there, at this mass does not supply oxygen. i understand common-sense regulations have to be in place, but some of this stuff is absolutely ridiculous. and lawyers are the people killing us. they are looking for something.
the small businesses are bearing the brunt because they cannot afford to hire these high-priced lawyers to protect themselves against these crazy regulations. guest: allen said the following about regulation. he made a very good point about small businesses. if there are regulations that could -- that are unnecessary and stifle small business creation or prosperity, i think we should look into removing it. but when you talking about broader regulation, regulation on the financial side, that's where we have to separate out. when we talk about financial reform, a lot of bankers said they regulation on them is killing the economy, and that is very weak and argument. it does not have to be complex. we need clean and tight
oversight for very large industries to make sure there is not monopoly power, which is often a problem in a negative corporate environment. but when it comes to small businesses and being able to set up shop and sell your goods, then i think if there are ways to streamline that, i do not see why we are not doing it. host: as far as the job picture is concerned, one of the next series of reports to give us a look? guest: we of weakness -- we have weekly jobless claims and unemployment benefits that come out every week. the levels suggests little progress in bringing the unemployment rate down. a weekly number every thursday morning to let get. and the next number comes out every friday of every -- the
first friday of every month. we get the july data at the beginning of august. in between coming to get manufacturing surveys that have unemployment industries to see it managers plan to hire or lay off workers. host: the rate of 9.2% right now, is that expected to stay? guest: it could do many things. the fear is that the rate will go back up, because the payroll growth is so slow right now. if we get another couple of months like this, the jobless numbers will spike. if we start to get the improvement in the labor market, you can expect to every spikes in the jobless rate because that is comprised of the total labor force. the more people that enter the labor force, they might be encouraged by the new activity in the market and re-enter the market, thereby spiking the raid. host: we started talking about
the role of government. will there be a resurgence of hiring? for the government. guest: no, because we're talking about cutting spending into a very weak economy. most economists will tell you that that is the wrong thing to do. the right thing to do is because the issue of the debt is framed in a deceptive way. if you lose jobs and the economy shrinks, card debt will rise, because it is tied to tax revenues, only from people who are employed. ironically we might make this been more in order to get out of the fut. pedro da costa is with reuters, their economic correspondent. thank you for your time. later on in the program, we will talk with the governor of
vermont about issues concerning his state, and also the national economic picture. he is attending the national governors' association meeting in salt lake city which c-span is covering. up next we will talk about the latest in what is known as operation fast and furious, guns bought in the u.s. making their way south to mexico. before we have that discussion, a look at the week's news be a political cartoons. -- via political cartoons.
his personal collection. what's interesting discovery was made on his first draft of the declaration of independence from modern technology? you will find out more from our original documentary on monday night. we will toward the great hall and the reading room, showed treasures found in the rare books and special collections, and presidential papers from george washington to calvin coolidge. learn how the library is using technology to discover hidden secrets and its collections and to preserve its holdings for future generations. join us for the "library of congress, calls " on c-span. modern technology revealed that jefferson use the word subject before replacing it with the word citizen in his first draft of the declaration. >> "washington journal" continues. host: our guest joining us now, dan freedman, a hearst
newspapers. there has been in the news a program known fast and furious as and -- know as operation fast and furious. guest: it was actually a project of the organized crime drug task force, justice program that seeks to root out entire criminal drug trafficking organizations, not just the small players. all whole organization from top to bottom. operation fast and furious was conceived of as just a operation, involving not only agents from atf, the bureau of alcohol, tobacco, and firearms, but the dea and other federal law-enforcement agencies. the rules of those agents is unclear, but the atf part was to
observe the purchases of 223's, based7's, on them military in-16. to observe purchases of these weapons in arizona, by so- called straw purchasers, sent in by cartel brokers to buy these guns, give them to the brokers who would then take them to mexico and sell them for sometimes three times the price. what happened essentially is that instead interdicting the forms before they got to mexico, the agents were instructed to observe and follow the trail, but what happened is that the trail got lost.
the guns got into mexico. as a result, several crimes were committed with those guns. one of them was the tragic murder of a border patrol agent, brian terry, in december 2007. that incident sparked a whole fuehrer over fast and furious. -- furor over a fast and furious. host: what specifically are they asking for? guest: at this stage is a classic washington "what did you know and when did you know it." they are directing fire that top officials of the bureau of alcohol, firearms, tobacco, and explosives. it goes by the traditional atf. they're also trying to find out what the top levels of the department of justice knew about
it. in the latest go round, congressman issa and senator grassley, the ranking member of the judiciary committee in the senate, have asked for all manner of e-mails and communications between the 10 top officials at the justice department of to and including the attorney general for the purpose of seeing what their state of knowledge was on fast and furious. the justice department's response to date is that we have provided you with all sorts of documents. we have made our officials available for interviews. we have cooperated to our best extent. but they also point out that this incident is under investigation by the department
of justice's inspector general, and they really are arguing for a let's wait and see what the internal investigation uncovers, and then we will know all the facts. there is a lot of natural tensions between the executive branch and congress, a situation we have seen going back to watergate and beyond. host: what kind of numbers are making it to mexico? guest: that is a very good question. responding earlier this month, or last month to our request of that time from senator feinstein, the atf replied that of guns submitted for tracing by mexico, there were a total of 29,000 or 30,000 tons in 2009
and 2010, total. of that number submitted for tracing to the national tracing center in martinsburg, 17% of those guns were from the united states, either manufactured in united states or imported into the united states by a u.s. importers. somewhat less today as to whether those guns were sold in commerce here in the united states, by licensed by iran -- firearms dealers or in private transactions, but if you talk to people at atf, they make it clear that even though they did not say that in a letter, that is the clear implication. these are guns coming from the united states, crossing the border into mexico, being used by the cartels. host: as far as the u.s. operation, in connection with
the government of mexico? guest: no, and that government of mexico is upset over the revelations. there is cooperation between u.s. law enforcement and mexican law enforcement, but to my knowledge, the state of mexico's knowledge about this was none to minimal. host: you mentioned that they were upset. how did the president respond? guest: i am not sure of his exact words, but mexico is taken the position that the problem of guns in mexico is also a u.s. problem. president calderon of mexico came before a joint session of congress and pretty much said all of these guns that we are -- that are involved in horrific, horrific crimes in mexico,
fighting between the drug cartels, hauling people off the buses, versus the police in the military, these weapons are the vast majority coming from the united states. you in the united states need to do something about that. fast and furious is just another piece of icing on the cake, if you will. it was bad enough that guns are coming from the united states, but for you to allow funds to cross without interdicting them when you knew that they were destined for mexico, that is really inexcusable. host: here's the number to call for learning about this program with our guest. for democrats, for republicans, and for independents.
email@example.com is our e-mail address. he could also send us a twitter. it was just arizona gun shops under investigation? guest: that's correct. specifically in the phoenix area, scottsdale, glendale, but the greater phoenix area. there is some debate between gun rights advocates and law- enforcement over whether these tactics used in fast and furious were used elsewhere in other operations and other states. i am told by law enforcement sources that they were not used. some suggestion that they were bought a gun rights folks as i mentioned. -- that they were by gun right faults as i mentioned.
buildey're trying to these complex cases to take down whole organizations. host: so gun shows could fall into this. guest: not this specific operation. this was really about a number of gun shops in the phoenix area. one indictment has come down involving 20 small-time straw purchasers, people who buy guns and then just give them for $100 a gun to brokers. that is a violation of federal law. that was the basis of the one indictment that has come down involving 20 straw purchasers. i am told by my services that there would be other indictments in fast and furious. we will see how they play out. host: the first call is from california on the republican line. .ou're on with dan freedman caller: i do not understand how
putting another log on me a fax a cartel member. -- law one me defects a cartel member. why should i register -- do you think that card temple members, frank, louis, we got a new law. as to register our guns. -- let's go register our guns. guest: as a gun owner, you know that california has very tough gun laws. if you look at the data, there is some suggestion that california is not a favorite shopping spot for cartels connected to getting guns to mexico. they prefer arizona and texas were the top -- with all laws or loser. -- where the laws are looser.
you could take them out in the parking lot, put them into the trunk of the broker, and they are off to mexico. the question of more laws goes to this debate here in washington and across the country. what you're seeing is that fast and furious is some ways a proxy for the gun rights debate going back to the 1960's. the nra line is that, let's enforce the laws that we had. we do not need new laws. senator feinstein and senators schumer and others, congressman cummings, the ranking member of the house oversight and government reform committee, of which daryl issa is the
chairman, they had a press conference saying, we need tougher gun laws so that we can all the traffic into mexico. but the caller's point is well taken. there's a question whether the loss on the books have been adequately enforced. the republicans want to fast and furious as exhibit a for that. host: how many gun shops are in border states? guest: that do not new. -- that i do not know. but there are many. that pretty much would be in the hundreds. the culture of the west and southwest is very much a gun culture. i was thinking about this on the way over here. i am originally from new york city. when i was growing up in new
york city in the 1960's and 1970's, guns were anathema. i have to be frank, that was the culture i came from. but then i move to texas in the 1980's and lived in san antonio for five years. guns were much more accepted. there were guns on gun racks and people talked about guns. there were gun stores all over. people seem to be at peace with that. that was a part of the culture. i would not say san antonio was any more or less any less dangerous than new york at the time. so there is a cultural divide here, i suppose. as a journalist, i have learned to really look at it from both points of view and try to sympathize as best i can. host: in the arizona operation, were there only a certain number of gun shots under scrutiny? guest: it was really only a
certain number of gun shops in the phoenix area. what happened in this will all come out in the ig report, but what appears to have happened is that the ring of purchasers involved in fast and furious was operating in the phoenix area but for atf agents became aware of them. they purchase a certain number of guns before atf started surveiling them. once atf became aware of these straw purchasers, instead of just arresting them as they would in the normal course of business, they'll let them continue to purchase guns with the idea of following the trail. let's see where it goes. let's bring in the brokers. let's bring in the drug mafia cartel member in mexico. let's get whole organization and take it down.
atf has been criticized -- that is what fast and furious got started. in an ig report from 2010, atf had been criticized for not building these complex cases. not going after the top of the cartels or the chain along the way that supplied funds in exchange for drugs coming into the united states. so in response to that criticism, they mounted operation fast and furious and there was quite a considerable amount of attention paid to it at the highest levels of atf. host: pa., matt, good morning. caller: i find it amusing that the investigation started in arizona where the federal government is suing the state of arizona. this is nothing but a false flag
operation. the atf, the people involved in atf, should be fired and congress should definitely investigate this. i would like also make a comment. my republican friends, i'm going to paraphrase, amendment to says the rights of the people shall not be in france to keep and bear arms. -- infringed to keep and bear arms. host: "the washington post class " says this. this is nevada and colorado. a decision this week about the amount of guns purchased. guest: that is a very good point.
the new regulation promulgated by the obama administration this past week, something that has been in the cooker for quite awhile, says that if anyone purchases more than two semiautomatic weapons, 22- caliber or greater, more than two those within five days, presumably at that same gun shop, there is a reporting requirement. but firearms dealer has to report that to the atf. the nra and the republicans on capitol hill objected to this quite strenuously. i think the nra intends to file a lawsuit saying this cannot be done. they need a congressional
approval. that is a good point the post is making about purchasers going to other states that are not covered by this new requirement. i know that in a survey we did for hearst newspapers, 1600 guns, i they're winding up in mexico or intercepted, a few of those cases were from nevada and oklahoma. that would not be covered by this new regulation. just to clarify, the new regulation is just the border states of texas, new mexico, arizona, and california. host: ray on the republican line. caller: this is big government bureaucracy on our part, indicative of the corruption of the mexican government.
i hate to oversimplified but if we had secured the border along time ago, this probably would not have been a big issue. guest: that is a valid point for the corruption in mexico is endemic. it has been going on for generations. it is an accepted part of the culture, at least it has been hitherto. i think president calderon has done the best can to try to attack that culture and also attacked the cartels. a lot of what you're seeing, the conflict in mexico is a result of that. the military and law enforcement is cracking down in mexico like never before. and the cartels are not happy about that. it is getting harder to buy off the chiefs of police or the military commanders. by the same token, corruption still does exist. it is a very serious problem.
host: becomes the cartels, -- when it comes to the cartels -- guest: a fascinating point. i'm going to keep trying to look into it. on the corrupt military officers giving their weapons over --i am interested to find out and have not done so yet just what kind of sales there are between united states and mexico military and law enforcement. that will be interesting to find out. certainly it would be fair to assume that there is a certain amount of weaponry in mexico as a result of those transactions. as far as central america goes, certainly central america has
gotten a lot of weapons. it would be no surprise hit a good number of those wound up in mexico. there was an ap story that senator grassley referred to in the letter from 2009. it recounted of visit to a bolt in mexico city where there were 300,000 tons or some amazing number. these were all captured weapons. and certainly a percentage of them are going to come from central america or corruption between military officers selling their weapons and that kind of thing. the totality of weapons in mexico and the relevance of that figure to the discussion of u.s. funds going to mexico is really a key piece of this debate. it has not played out yet. one thing i would observe is that mexico is awash in weapons
and has been so since pancho villa. before that even. one of my favorite movies is "treasure of the sierra madre, calls " filmed in 1948. it depicts an american down and out in mexico in 1926. there is a famous scene where the americans digging for gold are surrounded by bandits on all sides. what to the bandits want? the gold that the americans have dug out? no, they want guns. that is generations ago. the question of how many guns and where they are coming from has some relevance to this debate. but a lot of people would say, here in the united states, we are americans.
we need to be concerned not with the totality of weapons in mexico but that which we export unwittingly through the straw purchasers. host: james has this on twitter. this looks at tampa, florida. guest: i see some of that. that involves allegations that a similar kind of operation -- gun walking, following them instead of interdicting them, took place. with regard to purchases of kinds that went to honduras. honduras being sent from -- central america, of course. no reports yet that the guns were recovered from crimes, but that could be another aspect of this.
in the 44 cases that i looked at, it was all pretty clear that these were straw purchases that took place in the united states and gun shops from brownsville, texas across the border, houston, san antonio, tucson, phoenix --these were all cases a straw purchasers buying weapons that wound up in mexico. how did the atf get on to the straw purchases? mostly because they were recovered in mexico. the serial numbers were submitted for tracing for the national tracing center. after a lot of arduous labor by the personnel at the tracing centers, they discovered who the purchaser was. and what stored the purchaser bought the weapon from. that is how the cases unfolded.
what atf was interested in doing, and one could question the wisdom of that, was getting beyond the retrospective cases when a weapon is recovered. the idea was to get the weapons before they go. obviously they miscalculated and a good number of weapons got through to mexico anyway. host: gary on our independent line. caller: he said 70% of the guns were traced to the united states that were found in mexico. actually, 80% of the guns that are seized by the police and military are not traceable to anything. that means the must likely came from the international black market for weapons. according to the last "america rifleman" magazine, they had a big article on this. they stated you could buy a
black-market ak-47 for $55. i doubt most of the guns coming in to these cartels will be purchased for $1,000 or more in gun stores. what appears to be happening, since they easily could put gps tracking devices in guns and followed them, but they did not. they just follow them to the first handoff and let them go. since this administration has been chomping at the bit, so to speak, to increase gun control in this country, it seems like they're trying to pad their statistics as far as letting guns get in to mexico. they had no one on the other side of the border aware of it. they did not have spanish- speaking agents. they did not make any effort to follow them. the only logical conclusion is that they were just trying to get the number of u.s. weapons seized at crime scenes up.
host: your response? guest: the caller makes a few valid points. on the question of where these guns come from, again, the atf has always said that what we're talking about here argon's submitted for trace. there's no dispute that mexico does not submit all the guns bases in crimes for tracing. it is just a matter of those guns that are submitted for tracing, what percentage of those are from u.s. sources? that is the universe, for better or worse, we are dealing with here. not every country has tracing. we cannot have the capability to trace guns that come from other sources into guatemala and end up in mexico. other countries do not have the tracing apparatus that we have.
on the whole question of how they were surveiled and not interdicted, some veteran atf people, and some retired, will admit that there was a lack of wisdom in letting those guns go in those matters. surveiling them at the beginning and just assuming they would be able to keep track of them somehow. there was a lack of recognition that once those guns cross the border, or even in the region of the southwest, they become very hard to track. there was just a structural problem from the outset of not being able to go after those guns. this tried and true law- enforcement technique works in some cases.
i have spoken to dea agents to tell me about control delivery were they say one time marijuana comes in to los angeles -- 1 ton of marijuana comes in. they take in the driver and they tell him he is in a world of trouble but he can help himself if they take them up the chain through his ultimate sales point or the big people in the organization. nine times out of 10 the lower down people will do that. but that has been a very successful tactic, but you have to ask yourself if wonton of marijuana gets free and you lose track of the -- one ton of marijuana gets free, you argue how much damage is done.
host: virginia is next for our guest, dan freedman, a hearst newspapers. matt, go ahead. caller: i was calling to discuss today's statistics and numbers that the administration and the atf were siding. from congressional testimony, it would be contradictory. in 2007-2008, we seized 29,000 tons in mexico. they only submitted a very small number for tracing, give or take 6000. of which 5000 came back as traceable to the united states. 1/6 was submitted for tracing and from that 80% come back to the u.s.
the fact that we routinely ketch weapons from -- catch weapons from a moscow-based organization and chinese made guns. they seized all of these grenades, none of which came from the united states. the argument that all of these weapons are coming from the united states, and not all of these are single shot rifles. that is not with the cartel's want. host: we will leave it there. guest: the caller raises a lot of interesting issues. he mentioned rpg's seized. there is a state department cable i came across when i was searching for a state department cable that senator grassley had talked about.
it had subheads which suggested the u.s. pipeline to mexico was false and allegations about it weren't true. i never did find that memo. the senator's staff would not release it to me. in searching, i did come across another cable from 2009 from mexico where the diplomats in mexico runback -- wrote back saying 90% of guns, meaning rifles and handguns, come from the united states that are recovered and submitted for tracing. 90% of the heavy do believe -- duty artillery, very series is what isurpolulus
coming from central america. that is the unquestioned in my mind, if there is different grades of weaponry coming from different regions. i, myself, covered the conflict in el salvador during my youth in the early 1980's and i was in guatemala, as well. i observed a lot of weaponry down there. and there were a lot of older rifles and such that were pretty well warn of then and i wonder what shape they would be in now. there really is an interesting question that i think has yet to play out. i would say that the number of weapons that are involved in horrific crimes in mexico that are traced back to the united states is significant. in at least one of these cases
the police raided a known drug hideout, a place for drug traffickers, and they were repulsed by the superior weaponry of the cartel inside the building. when it was all said and done, one of the weapons that was found that was traced to arizona. this is a question, you know? it is not the totality of weapons but the new work, modern weapons with superior firepower coming from the united states giving these cartels the edge. there is an argument to be made for that. host: next up off of the republican line, frank from maryland. caller: thank you for covering this very important issue. i did spend five years in texas,
including three on the border. the justice department investigation and the politics surrounding this very real problem of smuggling across the border into mexico. on the politics side, many of us are still distrustful of the justice department. there has been a lot of misuse of force and we need the congress journalists to stay on top of it. there was a decision made a few weeks back to allow mexican truckers to go past the checkpoints to 40-50 miles inland. what little bit i saw of smuggling, those mexican truckers, on their return trips
cannot they will be smuggling guns into mexico. we have very few resources to really do screenings on a southbound trucks. a lot of our resources are focusing on north down. -- northbound trucks. guest: the caller makes a great point. it is a little bit out of my area, but the decision on mexican trucks was made so that mexico would lift their tariffs on u.s. products bound for mexico. it was kind of a trade-off to do more business in mexico if we would allow mexican trucks into the united states. the question of southbound policing is really a fascinating one. it is only in the past year or two that anyone even thought that southbound traffic was something we should be paying attention to. we talk about resources.
even today, where a lot of people feel there is the whole budget debate, debt ceiling, our government is bloated, government spending is to be reined in, the various law enforcement groups on the border is scratched incredibly thin. there are not really enough bodies let alone equipment and what have you to really do an adequate job of searching trucks and bound ludlow outbound. -- inbound let alone outbound. it will be hard to see how they will do an adequate job of searching trucks sat down for weapons. that being said, the more intelligence that is shared between law-enforcement agencies, the greater a chance that they can target these various trucks and cars going
southbound that do have weapons. there is a technology now to trace license plates that is getting better and improving as time goes on. there is a limited amount of it, but there is supposed to be more racing license plate southbound near the border so that if a car is known through intelligence sharing to be carrying weapons or thought to be, someone can pull that car over. in one case in my survey, the customs and border protection pulled over a car that they suspected of having weapons, and it must have been a truck, because it had more than 200 ak- 47's in there. host: to,, washington. you are next. -- tacoma, washington. caller: the bigger issue is that we live in a corrupt world. these issues have been going on
for decades where our government has known about certain types of trafficking and has allowed it for one reason or another. 9/11, the al qaeda, telescan thing -- the taliban thing, and now this is a big media thing with it spilling over our borders. it's 2011. we have the technology. we need to secure our borders. beating around the bush is not the problem. it is a south american issue. it is an issue for us. we have to do something about it. host: what is the next chapter when it comes too fast and furious? guest: the next chapter will be the conclusion or the corporate
progress of the congressional investigation and the department of justice's and inspector general's report. once these come out and conclude i think we will have a very accurate picture of what fast and furious was all about. there are a lot of blanks that are not filled in yet and i would really caution everyone calling in viewing this show to not rush to judgment on this. do i have told my sources that there are more indictments coming down in this case has not entirely played out yet. there will be higher ups and it will not just be a question of straw purchasers, the smaller fish. the caller did raise a good question about the corruption in government, sealing the border. and these are issues.
i worked in taxes in the 1980's. and itexas in the 1980's have spoken to a lot of enforcement people in places like el paso. this is an extremely difficult problem. you have a tremendous amount of commerce, both human and commercial, going across those borders. it is a needle in a haystack kind of proposition when it comes to ferreting out who has contraband into has legitimate goods. there was a proposal for a border fence that basically was shelled by the obama administration because it proved to be not feasible. we will just have to see how these various negotiations over the debt ceiling and budget plan
out and what their impact will be on the border and border protections. host: our guest is the national editor for hearst newspapers, dan freedman. thank you for your time today. in our last segment, we will talk with the governor of vermont, peter shumlin, on his state and issues. he is at the national governors association. we will have that discussion when we come back. >> we are here in the thomas jefferson library in the library of converse. this holds 2000 books from jefferson's personal collection. one interesting discovery was made on his first draft of the declaration of independence to the use of modern technology. lots of answers about this unique the library in the c-span original documentary, "but the
library of congress." we will tour the thomas dickerson building including the great hall and reading room. we will look a rare books in this special collections and presidential papers from george washington the calvin coolidge. learn how they are learning to preserve their holdings for future generations. join us for "the library of congress" monday night o'clock p.m. eastern and pacific. >> this weekend on "but tv," in "hesitation kills," 1 marine relives her experiences on the frontlines. in "railroaded" booking at the
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congressional hearings. also supreme court oral arguments. on the weekend, our signature interview programs. on saturday, "the communicator's." on sunday, "newsmakers," "q&a," and "prime minister's questions." c-span, washington your way. a public service created by america's cable companies. >> "washington journal" continues. host: this is the setup of the national governors association in salt lake city, utah. it started yesterday. joining us today to give us his perspective on that meeting as governor peter shumlin of vermont. thank you for your time. guest: great to be with you. host: there is a story in "the new york times," talking about
all the states looking at the debt talks as they inflate in washington, d.c. can you give your perspective from your state on these conversations? guest: all the governors and certainly we come in vermont, assume they will work this out. the white house has confidence they will get there. all i can tell you is we all have to balance our budgets and we have been making tough decisions to grow jobs with economic opportunities and i can tell you that vermont is the only state in the country that has no constitutional requirement to balance our budget. whether we have a democratic or republican governors, we balance our budgets and we expect washington to do the same. we think they would work it out, and it would be a disaster for us, as we emerge from recession in vermont, to see the kind of devastation and economic impact that, i believe, would put the brakes on the recovery if they do not work this out.
it does not matter with state you're from. what the american people want is common sense, reasonableness, and compromise. we expect to get that here in the national governors association. host: another topic is the stated the economy and how it impacts individual states. what changes have states like yours made in light of the current economic conditions? guest: this has been a tough time to become a governor. we have more new governors elected since any time since 1923. i inherited a huge budget deficit. a balanced it the old-fashioned way by making tough choices without raising broadbased taxes. i was proud to get that to my democratic legislature. i am convinced that we can make the infrastructure changes that are so necessary that we can grow jobs and raise the incomes of those who have jobs. here is my biggest challenge. i wake in the morning is the chief executive of vermont
thinking i was elected governor at a time when people in vermont are making the same amount of money they were making 10 years ago. this is true across so much of america. yet when i go to the gas pump, it is $4. we are paying more at the grocery store. i have two kids in college. tuition is up. that is the reality. i asked as governor, water the things we can do to make the infrastructure changes that only government can do to grow jobs and raise incomes? our unemployment rate is only 5.4%. unemployment is not my biggest challenge. my challenge is income growth. we have a three-point plan to get it done. we want vermont the first it real estate have broadband and self-service for every mile and a smart grade meter in every home by 2013. we need to compete for jobs and economic opportunities and was
beacon be connected. second, we're going after health-care costs to be the first day in the country where health care is a right and not a privilege. we are trying to pass a single payer plan were health-care policy individual and is not a requirement of the employer, which i think will be a jobs creator. it will not be a fee-for-service program that will bankrupt us but a fee-for-service program we can afford. third, and finally, we're working to look at hire education, early childhood education, retraining the existing work force for 21st century jobs. but we think we can do those three things that with a great economic future. at least from the perspective of vermont, i am convinced that is removed from the economy powered by oil to other ways that we will see the economic expansion, economic opportunities, and i say this as
a business person, that will be on rivaled when it comes to the industrial revolution and the tech bomb. the question for me, as a governor, is how deposition vermont to get some sliver of that economic opportunity. had we build their buildings to be more efficient which will affect how and where we get our power. it will affect where we grow our food. i think he will see a renaissance in locally grown agriculture were removed food from farms to plates come to the restaurant and to markets bigger than us to new york and boston feeding to -- it feeding people within 200 miles of vermont. i'm very optimistic about our future. host: we have a gutter -- governor shumlin until the end of the show. the numbers are on your
screen, if you are a resident of vermont and want to speak your governor -- governor, the single payer health care plan in vermont, has it passed or not? guest: we are now pointing a board that well-designed the first system in the country. the legislature, we wanted to go into effect in 2014 when the national bill will go into effect. we see the national bill as a bridge. president obama has said so many times, and he is right, that we believe the states can be laboratories for change. we're not saying that we have a perfectly right, but we want the states to make it even better. he very much wants to work with us and the administration have been in getting us the waivers
and things we need this to work. we talk about single payer in the challenges for vermont. on average, vermont workers are making the same money that they were when decade ago. we were spending $2.50 billion on health care 10 years ago. today, $5 billion. we only have 625,000 people. by 2015, we will be spending $2,500 out of the pockets of every single living in vermont ers from the same people making the same wage one decade ago. this is true for the nation. we're spending more money on health care in america for a less productive outcome, less healthy people. i'm convinced that vermont can design a cost-containment system that works where we use our health care for making people healthy and getting at the insurance companies often are providers back and letting them
do what they do best, providing medicine. most importantly, get the waste and abuse out of the system so that we can spend less for better quality care in a system where it is a right and not a privilege. host: first call from fairfax, va., and vermont residents, your number is -- john, from fairfax. you are wrong with the governor. -- you are on. caller: good morning. i sent the president to health care plan early on when he was asking for them. basically, it would be to set up health savings accounts for each baby before they are born with combined funds from the state, family, and the federal government. for right now, my idea is for vermont to allow nonprofit health-care centers to offer
tourists and residents to support your community health care centers. host: you can respond, if you wish. guest: an interesting proposal. you can setup of the health care savings that you want, but if we can -- spending the money that we are in health care, we will bankrupt america and make a very tough to grow jobs and economic opportunity. we will see the rest of the world continue to eat our lunch. let me give you an example. my biggest trading partner is canada. our biggest province trading partner is quebec. they are our neighbors and friends. when i go to talk to the premier, he will say, "gov., when we talk about companies locating in a vermont, new hampshire, quebec, we eat your lunch every single time."
i asked him how. it is $8,000-$10,000 per employe to provide health care and it is an obligation of the employer. it is not in canada. i think that i need to change that. there are so many reasons, economic, and the basic issues are that all thus need health care and we have to have it. i have a lot of uninsured. if they really get sick, they will lose their economic security, their ability to keep their home, keep their car. they know they are underinsured. we are paying more and more for insurance, getting less and less coverage and we're watching our small and large businesses be unable to compete in a global market. we need to convince the states to be a laboratory for that change and we need to stop nibbling on the edges and joined the developed world in passing a
single payer health care plan that makes health care of basic human right. host: when will the details for the plan come out? guest: the goals in what we're doing now are putting together the smartest five people i can find help design this system. we want to steal ideas from other parts of the world and make sure that works for vermont. let me give you some specific examples. the plan will be publicly financed. you will have an insurance card. it you come out to the counter and we will be the first day in the country with a single pair. this is what ibm does, general motors, ge. these big companies have a single pair closed plants. the person behind a counter will say we did $1,000 worth of work, and the green mountain health care plan covers $900.
you have to cover $100 as your copiague. check cash or credit? you will not leave without paying for your health care anymore than you would walk out of a grocery store without paying for your groceries. that will save us eight or 9 cents on every $1. harvard helped design the plan for us and say that will save money right off the back. the health care card will be tied your medical records so that we can see everything that has been done to you since you were born and we can manage your care based upon at intermission. also contained in there will be all the tests and procedures done to you because reduplicate so many services in our current system that is highly inefficient. those low hanging deficiency but it will be the first step. the third and final step, the most difficult but the most expensive -- most important, is to move to a fee-for-service program. the amount of work they do, and
moved to an outcomes based payment system more providers get paid for keeping healthy. i know that is a radical idea, but that is what most of the world does. this fee-for-service program have now will kill us in the smaller rural states first because we have a lot of medicaid and medicare patients. providers get reimbursed 40 cents on $1, so we are losing the small providers. the shop at the doctor's office and the sign is, "no longer providing health care." there are a couple of reasons we have to get this done. to create jobs and economic opportunities, because we believe it is a human right, but third, we will not have a rural health care delivery system would not make significant changes. host: florida on the democratic line. go ahead. caller: this fellow seems like a
very reasonable and sensible politician. nothing good is for you. i would like to ask a couple of questions, though. why is it that the debt ceiling on the becomes a problem under a democratic president? my second question is how did grover norquist have such a grip over the republican politicians? eyeleted might answer off of the year. -- i will take my question of of air. guest: democrats have to be fiscally responsible. they're the ones that actually balanced budget. look at the surplus president clinton created. both times we have had significant deficits in my lifetime or under president reagan and president george bush. bush number two past on this
mess. president obama is left trying to pick up the pieces. democrats understand that we cannot take care of the people who need us, seniors, are most vulnerable citizens. we cannot pay for the things we need to do to have jobs in the 21st century. if we did not balance budgets and we did not pay our bills, this is what president obama is so badly trying to do. it is extraordinary to me that when we are facing one of these roughest times in american history produced over a number of years, mostly under president bush that this group in washington and congress is saying that we're going to balance all the challenges that were created by the last president on the backs of the most abominable americans, but if you have a corporate jet, if you produce oil and make billions and billions of dollars, or if you are a millionaire making more money and paying lower taxes since any time since 1952 in america, the
will not have any scan in the game. i support the president in saying that we want to make reforms, reduce spending, and balance the budget, but those who make the most need to pay a little, too. i think that is a reasonable position. host: rutledge, vt., on the republican line. caller: hello. i wanted to ask a question about the health-care system that you're proposing for the state. there's lots of talk about how much it will cost, a lot of talk about the fact of vermont is one of the help the states in the union and that is one of the most taxed state in the union. how will we pay for this? i have heard anything from 5% have an 11% peril taxes -- 5%- 11% payroll taxes.
guest: if you think i am not paying a health-care tax, i did not know how you're looking at the economics of this. i have a small business, 18-20 employees. and this is how it works in vermont. we have three insurance companies. you get your bill. dear bill goes up anywhere between 12%-30% in one year. it is a costa cannot control. do you call the other providers and say, "i just got my bill from blue cross and it is up 30%. what are you doing? they say they are doing that. the next year, your bill comes 15%, 30%. we all look from the triangle and there is not a sustainable rate for anyone who is paying. if we can design the first cost containment system in the
country, and i am convinced we can, we will spend dollars on health care and figure out how to pay for. as a business person, if you said to me very simply the governor and the state of vermont has figured out a way to cover all of your employees by using less money and do not have a 20%-30% increase, i would say, "where do i sign up?" or have governments failed every single time? people much smarter than me. barack obama, hillary clinton, howard dean. where we fail is by designing a cost-containment system that works. i will not push send on that paper this and must be configured how to get cost containment and the delivery system right. all i can say you is that, yes, it will cost money. i will not taxes on west it
costs less money than we are spending now. when that happens, vermont will be more competitive than the other 49 states for jobs and economic opportunities and we will win. host: in indiana, they write -- guest: whenever you talk about the health-care system in vermont, ask this question. are you ask a question that is different than the problems have in the current system? no, you're not. the current system allows them to use and limited health care and unlimited cost. that is our problem. we have to design a system where we promote preventative care and there are rewards for preventive care because we know it saves money, saves lives, it produces
healthy people. we want people to diet, exercise come clean, good leaving, getting off of smoking. most importantly, a system that we can afford. you're describing the current system right now. if you do not think health care costs are out of control, you're living on another planet. this will sink america. why you think general motors caused so much trouble? host: fort worth, texas is next. caller: thank you for taking my call. twice now, the governor has said that we need to get rid of the fee-for-service system, but our doctors not supposed to walk for a fee? it is easy for the dirty politicians to demonize physicians who work the very best, but what about the nurses, janitors, orderly's? there is a lot that goes in to
health care and taking away the fee-for-service to not pay salaries will not be the answer? guest: i did not say lower salaries. i say we are not paying enough. we are wasting our money on an insurance company profits, an extraordinarily inefficient duplicative system, and a system that provides a system or a date are being second guessed by the insurance companies. i have not said one negative thing about the people who deliver services in vermont. we have the best quality system in the country, one of them. the challenges are that these small, rural providers are primary health-care providers who cannot survive in the payment system design that we currently have in america. they are not getting enough money. this is about getting rid of the
waste, insurance company profits, and a payment system that is bankrupting our providers. host: newport, vt., democratic line. your next with gov. shumlin. caller: thank you for taking my call. i am a state employee. host: go ahead, caller. caller: i am a state employee and a union member. thank you for your respect for state employees and union members. my question to you is that your at the governor's contention right now and there are several governors across this country who seem to be attacking public service workers. the only thing that i would ask
is that they have the respect that you have for union workers. again, we do appreciate your work. guest: thank you for your call and thank you for the hard work that you're doing. i think vermont is a great example of how you balance budgets and work together with your state employees to solve problems. she took a 3% pay cut two years ago. another 3% this year in terms of maintaining that cut. they made significant concessions in our pension plans. we did it by bringing everyone to the table and say we are in really tough times. they worked incredibly hard for the state of vermont and i've tremendous respect for the work that they do. we just came out of the toughest winter in recent memory. we had some much snow that it was unbelievable. men and women were out there plowing snow in a 40-foot snag.
they are running trying to clear the you roads making $12 an hour. these are people who got us into these mess. the teachers are not the people who got us into this mess. but i keep saying to my folks is that a common, shared sacrifice is what washington ought to be doing. my state employees, unions have come to the table and worked with us to make those tough choices. i will get them back on track as soon as we return to prosperity, but it is about mutual respect and working together. as a chief executive of the state of vermont, incredibly proud of my state employees. they provide a service, work hard, and are incredibly dedicated. they have made some tough choices with me. i will not demonize them in an effort to try and correct the problem brought to us by wall street, the abuse on wall street, not the abuse on main street, not the person working for $14 an hour trying to feed
their family. i will never forget that. host: off of twitter -- how do you respond to that last part? guest: president obama did an extraordinary job to get the health care bill that he got. it will make a huge difference for the uninsured americans and it will make a huge difference for states that do not provide basic, adequate health care. i think he will go down -- it will go down in history as a great moment for america. if you think the president got everything he wanted in that health care bill, guess again. listen. the special interests, as long as they're driving the train when we talk about health care reform, you will not get true reform. that is what happens in washington. special interests,
pharmaceutical, medical equipment manufacturers make some much money off of our misery, and frankly they're driving the train. it is very tough to get real, comprehensive reform. i am convinced as one governor that, first of all, getting health care right is a jobs creator, and economic opportunity, and it will come from the states. the laboratories must be the states. we are excited to do it and we can get it right. when we do get it right, some of us will and some of us will not. we can and will move to a sensible health care system in america. it will take time but the change has to come from the state is we have not sold out to the special interests. host: the question off of email. have you been talking with people at the white house about this? guest: absolutely. we are working with secretary sibelius. everything that we do, we keep
them abreast of what we are up to. we need their help. we'd be able to take the medicare and medicaid plan and have the flexibility without reducing the standards. we need to design a system that actually works. having said that, our main concern in this plan is a guy from harvard who worked together with his students to look at the health-care system in vermont and come to us with recommendations sanctioned by the legislature was president of the senate before i became governor. we tell them to come back to us with a way to deliver quality health care, universal access, publicly financed, and we wanted to know how much money it would save us. they came back and it said they would serve as a lot of money and it would make sense. he has been doing health care all over the world for many years. he designed a system in taiwan, vietnam, a number of countries.
i told him that we would love to have has helped right here in vermont. he said that he had given up on america because of special interests and the rest. i begged him, as senate president, to come to vermont and help us design the system and he did. he is our main consultant and he has been extraordinarily helpful, as well as the whole team, and bringing hospitals, doctors, nurses, to the point where they say they need to pursue change. that is where we are right now. host: another question off of twitter. guest: they contribute a little more, frankly, now, than they did before. we just came out with a package with our teachers that is sitting as $25 million per year, $100 million over four years, that will increase as time passes.
i know there is an obsession with pensions right now, public employee pensions. many of the states have not yet met their obligations to find them. in vermont, we have done a pretty good job of that. we balance our book and pay our pensions. the truth is that my averaged a employee after a lifetime of work for the state of vermont gets a pension of anywhere between $21,000 and $24,000. that is not rich. all i am saying is, sure, i understand. many of my fellow governors, scott walker and others, have made a real obsession of basically undermining collective bargaining and going after state employees. i just do not think that is where you are going to get the most job growth and job creation and income growth. i just do not. i think you get it from the areas that i have outlined. we have extraordinary opportunities as we move to
renewable energy and a new way to power. the question for us all is are we going to have an educated populace that will be able to do the work of these high-tech 21st century jobs? are we going to ask our kids to learn conventionally to ensure that that we are driving them to get a degree in higher education because they will not be able to make good money if they do not? are we doing everything we can make sure that when little kids show up at school, when they get to kindergarten and first grade that we have done everything to make sure they are ready to learn? i can tell you that the other countries are going to eat our lunch if we do not. it is about education. it is about investing in innovation. it is about having capital for good ideas to be carried out in business. it is ensuring we have a health care system we can afford and having the technology to compete in a global marketplace. i am optimistic about our
future. i really am. that is where we should be focusing. that is where the money is. that is ready opportunity is and as governor, that is what i'm focused on, 24/7. host: illinois on the independent line. caller: you are right on target. i grew up in germany so i know what public health insurance is all about. my father had private insurance. when he had health issues he was in a semi-private room and i was in a room with 10 are 12 people. you may want to double check with countries like germany, but as far as i'm concerned, you are right on target. i hope that someday you will be the vice-president or maybe presidents in the next cycle around because you know about
how to take care of the people. i thank you for your work. guest: i appreciate the call. i am a vermont boy. i did not know if you can get me down to that mess in washington. i will try to stay focused and getting it right here. host: port charlotte, florida. caller: what a breath of fresh air to listen to you. one of the big problems we have is that the media does not come across. after all, they represent corporations. i wish you were on every station at least once a day, or someone of your caliber to explain to the people so we could have education through television. the single parent -- it single parent system, you are mathematically correct. i'm a high-school graduate and 72 years old. i can do simple, basic math.
the media gives some attention to the other side. they talk about the debt ceiling. now, the media should take responsibility in saying that medicare and social security did not contribute one penny to the debt ceiling. host: governor, can i ask you about your efforts on renewable energy and wondered ministration plans to do about it? -- and what your administration plans to do? guest: this is a huge are virginity we are not spending enough money on. listen. we can talk all we want about the debt ceiling, and we should, but we are missing the opportunity. the opportunity is that we are buying tons and tons of oil that will make this planet unlivable from countries that do not like us. we're going to war and sacrifice
american lives for oil. i am convinced that if we stay on this trajectory that it will continue to set us back economically because we cannot make money fast enough to pay for the rising cost of oil. if you look at how fast the chinese, the indians and others are building cars and sucking up oil, you look at the simple fact that we are now, for the first time in human history, burning as much money -- as much oil as we extract from the ground. it does not take an economist to tell you this is a crisis. we should decide for me to stick with the current power system and let that bankrupt us. we can decide that we're going to make this an economic opportunity. i am convinced that america can produce six, seven, or 8 cents solar power. president obama is committed to do that. the energy sector is committed.
we have to do it. we have to find ways to harness the wind and sun. then we need to find green, renewable ways the power. in vermont, this is what we are doing. we want to ensure that as they grow and build the big hydro dams that we have access to some of that green, renewable power at a reasonable rate. at the same time, we are building out our own wind, solar, biomass, small hydro, everything we can do to move to a community-based power system. we are designing a great to deliver that power. i'm convinced the power of the future for small states and america will be small community- based power. it together with your neighbors to have a solar power to drive your technology used. my point is this, two economic
opportunities we should be talking about more. the first is energy efficiency. vermont is the leader nationally. we are building new buildings, reducing years. america is the biggest energy hog in the glove. we have to make that better. when we make that better, we put dollars in our pockets that do not good to saudi arabia. and, most importantly, we are making a contribution to making the planet more livable for kids and grandkids, which is extraordinarily important. we are building wind, solar, biomass. we are harnessing everything we can and redesigning our grades so we can deliver renewable power to every home -- redesi gning our grids. we are shutting down our old leaking nuclear power plants so that we can move to that energy in future. host: sarasota, fla., so you can
go straight ahead with your question or comment? caller: thank you, governor. i would like to comment on a few things. you talk about bush of being the problem. that is a talking point that is getting very, very old. during bush's tenure, there were barney frank, chris dodd, maxine waters, who what really wanted to put a chicken in every pot. they created this house and bubble that we are all suffering with. you also talk about renewable energy. there was an inventor many years ago by the name of thomas edison who created the incandescent light bulb. he did this without government support. maybe there is another thomas edison out there. host: a also added this e-mail.
how many windmills would have to cover the vermont landscape to power in the city of stowe? guest: we will be powering many of our communities and we are doing a turbine project right now that will power thousands of thousands of homes. all i can tell you is that we believe that we can move to a renewable energy future. we believe we can be 60%-7% renewable within the next 10-15 years. we will make that happen. if we do not, i just want to say that what happens if we do not? what happens if we keep burning coal, oil, and fossil fuels? the answer is that the planet will be fine. bitter the things living in that that will be in trouble. -- it are the things living in it. we have no choice.
there is an economic opportunity, and we must. in terms of the debate about bush and who did what, let's not bicker about the past. washington to use less finger- pointing and more coming together with good common sense, radical solutions to problems to create jobs, educate americans, the more innovative and creative. i am sure there are a lot of thomas edison's out there. notice agreeing on that. i am a private sector guy. my own view of government has always been where you can get out of the way to enterprise, that is always good. my point is that the infrastructure changes we're making in vermont cannot be done by the private sector. building up the internet and cell phone service, they cannot afford to get to every last mile, so we have to partner to get it done. of a health care to the private sector, it will bankrupt us. period. on education, we cannot leave on education, we cannot leave th