tv KQED Newsroom PBS December 22, 2018 1:00am-1:31am PST
tonight on "kqed newsroom," as governor jerry brown prepes to leaveoffice, we talk with him about his life, legacy, and his hopes for california future. plus from a midterm election that altered the nation's power revelationsroubling about big tech, a look back at some of the top stories of 2018. and comedian paulane poundson politics, podcasts, and performing without a script. we'll hear how she got her start in stand-up right here in san francisco. hello and welcome to"kd newsroom." i'm thuy vu. we begin with governor jerry brown'sf ewell. he's leaving office january 7th, handing off the baton to governor elect gavin newsom. during his tenure, he reversed the state's fiscal woes and is leaving a surplus of $30 billion.
he oversaw a broad overhaul of the state's criminal justice system and fought for policies to combat climate change amid multiple challenges from the trump administration. kqed's politics and government senior editor scott shafer sat do with brown at the dpo governor's mansion. >> thank you for joining us on kqed. how are you feeling the final days in loffice? >> f good. it's very engrossing. there's a lot to do. we hve some regulatory issues. lawsuits. some we have personnel questions. so i got plenty to do oer the next almost three weeks. >> you came into office, and it was amess, right? there were questions about whether california was even governable. there was a $26 billion deficit, a big recession. and there's an expression, never let a good crisis go to waste. >> yeah. >> i'm wondering do you feel like you used that crisis to d things you might not have otherwise been able to do? >> well, we got things. so without that fiscal crisis, we probably wouldn't have had
the fund. we wouldn't have had the cuts we made. and we might not have had the tax increase that proposition 30 was. so those were all things that responded to a clearproblem that presented real threats. but that's what governmentis. it's challenge and response. you get a challenge, and you got to respond. if there's no challenge, we'd all be asleep. there would be nothingo d but that was a particularly difficult period. millions of people lost their homes. millions of people lost their jobs. that was a very unusual period, and it did provide the stimulus for a lot of things weid later on. >> to what extent were there things that you did because you felt you hto, but you didn't necessarily want to? one thing i'm thinking of is gettige getting rid of the redevelopment agents. were there things you would have liked not to do in terms -- >> redevelopment siphoned money from the schools, and the
schools needed money. many people think they still need money. teachers not overly paid in any sense. redevelopment, there were plenty of abuses. a lot of people wanted to see it go, and it did free up almost $2 billion a yearfor schools. and if people want to bring it back, they're going to take billions froms the ools. i would assume those people who care niout the califpublic schools will fight that very hard. >> yeah. you have made,t among or things, criminal justice reform really one of the hallmarks of your eht years in office. and part of that was due to the federal court saying you've g to reduce the prison population. det you went well beyond, i think, what n to be done to do that, to accomplish that. i'm wondering why wasch that s a signature, important issue for you? >> well, first of all, becau there are so damn many people locked up. a couple years before i became governor, there were over 170,000 principally men, principally low income men of color and not all that well
educrtted for the most pll locked up in cages. some people call it the gulag western-style. now, go back a few decades, and there were,0 20,000, , 28,000 locked up. we had 12 prisons. now we all of a sudden went on a ison building binge, which i'm sure the legislature really didn't think through, and we go up to 35 prisons. yet the number of felonies isn't that much different fom the '70s. so why would you more than double your prisons d more than quadruple the number of inmates? so that tells me we need to reform. yes, there are very dangerous people. horrible things that have been dead. but human beings are capable of transformation, are capable of change. and we want make that change more likely by having the right kind of nvironment. in prisons, in jails, in alternati programs, and having sentencing policy that makes
sense. >> another big issue for you e environment and climate change. do you feel like you accomplished everything you wanted to do as governor on th issue, or were there things undone? >> california has taken more intelligent action on climate hange than any state or province in the western hemisphere, and more than almost all jurisdictions in the whole world. so we've done at. is it enough to stop climate change? no. the world has to do much more, much quicker, and so does california. but that stepping it up requires public support. and as we see with macron, in the streets because of a carbon tax. we've seen in washingto a caon tax was handley defeated. we're on the road to disasteng we're g to get more drought, more fires, more destruction, and we better sta krolling it. >> you are california's younger
governor, and you're california's oldest governor. i think there were 30 years between. >> we did have some younger governors in the 19th century. t in the 20th century, i'm the oungest and the oldest. oldest of alltime. >> yeah. and so you had a lot of experiences inin your life between those two terms. >> yeah. >> i won't go through them all, but there were public you held. you did the buddhist thing, the zen how do you think all those things in between the two times you were governor made you different as governor the second time? >> well, we are u different. ow, as you age, you get back. things lo you look back on your life, and you learn things hopefully. i've learned workery closely with the legislature. but, again, it's eaer towork with them when i'm older than most of them and i have more experience. f thest time around, i was younger, and i had less experience, and a lot of what they were doing was all new to s me whe now, most of what we're doing is familiar to me
and new to them. so that's allowed a more balanced relationship, which i don't think i've taken advantage of, but i've fully embraced to make a cooperative >> so january 7th, you and your wife, ann, are going to leave. you're going to go caloosa county, which is a much quieter existence than you've been used to. what are you going to miss? >> i'm not sure. wn i left the latime, i didn't miss too much. when i left, i don think i looked back, what was deukmejian doing or what was thesl leture doing? you go on about your life. on january 24th, i'll be in washington to unveil the clock that is put out atomic scientists and they will tell us how close to midnight are we on the doomsday clock, which means how close are we to the end of the world. that's important. that's important work to try to wake people up. i hope to meet with members of
ouse and getnd the a greater awareness that we've nuclear al with the threat. and then i'm also going to be working on climate issues and then probably prison reform and sentencing. so just those three things alone, n to mention my olive trees and making sure that the emitters aren't plugged up or eaten by squirrels. i've ot a lot to do. >> governor brown, thank you so much. we hope you have a long retirement, long next chapter is probably a better way to say t. >> good. i don't think of retirement. i think of taking off in a new direction. now a look back at 2018. in politics, california played a key rolen the midterm elections blue wave. democrats won congressional seats long held by republicans in centl and southern california. at the state capitol, the me too arovement and sexual hssment allegations forced lawmakers to resign. meanwhile, refugees becameoche fus of a bitter political
debate as therump administration separatedli famies and civil rights advocates went to court. and in the tech industry, a moment of reckoning amid rising anger over how companies like facebook, google, and twi uer handleser data and fail to guard consumer privacy. here now with a year-end review of these and other top stories are three kqed reporters. from our politics and government desk, marisa lagos, co-host of the california report billy jamali, and silicon valley bureau chief, tanya moosly. i big year forim gration. just today the u.s. supreme court ruled that the trump administration's b asylum for any immigrants who cross the u.s.-mexico border illegally, they ruled against it. marisa, what happens now, especially since the trumti administ announced this week that immigrants seeking asylum would have to wait in mexico r their court ruling? >> well, i think like everything that's happened over thelast twoyears, there's more confusion in some areas.
it maybe clafies a litt bit. this was basically the trump administration attempting to thatof rewrite laws congress had written pretty clearly, which says no matter how you cross the border, whether it's at a port of ery or illegally, you may apply for asylum. the court upheld a lowercourt's decision saying that congress really did spell that out in the statute. interestingl john roberts, the chief justice, did side with the more libal justices. i think now you're going to see probably even more people applying for asylum, maybe people who had been a littlee deteby some of this back and forth. but really what i think the mexican government is figuring out what the new policy means in rms of people waiting in line in mexico. and i think real for everyone it's just been -- you know, so many changes so quickly. i mean lily, you've been down there. >> i think there's aof lot frustration frankly on the mexican side of the border, both probably with refugees or migrants who are waiting to come
in, but also from the government. i spoke with someonet a mexican embassy yesterday after that decision to keep folks on the mexican side while they go through the asylum process. it's beenreported as a deal that the u.s. and mexico struck, but when i spoke to m,th it was quite clear they were told by the trump a administratio 8:00 yesterday morning that this was happening. it was not a deal that was hatched by both sides from what i can tellen >> we've shis before, right? i mean the travel ban announced with very little notice. other immigration policies announced with very little . noti for immigrants, how confusing is this? you know, court ruling after inurt r policy after policy. >> well, i don't think they are tit for tat thi that happens on this issue, on an issue that's very important to them. they're not checking twitter every seco the way a lot of reporters who follow this beat closely are. and so i think what we're seeing
is they are still going to the bord, and there are actually lawyers in some cases trying to receive them and telling them, don't leave. you know, if you're going to a border where we're hearing in otay mesa, for example, that they're being rerouted to another border entry in san diego at san ysidro. those lawyers a there to receive them and say don't go anywhere. so, you know, there is some support for them in that regard, but there's really a deluge of news, and i think the most that they can do is just understand that this is really an asylum policy that is under assault by the trump administratit. i think m of them get that. >> also under assault are not only people currently seeking asylum but the administration now is trying to also target vietnamese refugees for deportation, people who have been here for decades in the silicon valley, where your base of coverage is. how is that playing ou it's a huge issue. we talk about silicon valley,
san jose proper, and santa clara county, we're talking nearly2 ,000 residents who live there who are vietnamese, and we're talking about generations of folks. the migration startedin happ in the '70s, and the '80s. this is a huge community, andl they're r watching it very closely and very concerned about overall. t >> i think politically, i remember when this broke out, i thought it such a bizarre move for the trump administration to make because in california ata , first generation vietnamese have been a very loyal votingbloc for republicans historically. >> especially in orange county. >> where we just saw all of the congressional republicans se. and so it just seems -- and you have already seen generational h ges. i think kids of those immigrants are more likely to be independent or democratic anyway, but i do think this is just one of those things where o you're g, okay, you're attacking everybody including people that are part of your base, and howgo is thatg to play out in 2020? i mean it seems to me like it could be a bad miscalculation. >> all right. a bit of a head scratcher there.
let's talk about tech as well, tanya. >>hat a year. >> what a year for a lot of compaaries, butcularly for facebook and its users. what are we learning now aboutpa which ces facebook shared data with, and how many users were afcted? "the new york times" has been doing some amazing investigations of this. >> that's right. we learn about new companies every single day, it seems. i counted from february to toay, we'vead 21 scandals over the course of this time. >> involving facebook?vo >> iing facebook and user data. ust so right now we're learning more and more about the policies, the way facebook works. i that it was a huge awakening for regular people who aren reporters to actually learn the inner workings of facebook and ho facebook works, that they actually receive money through advertising and through our data and through metadata. so that's something that many people are now learning, and we're learning abt more a more companies. you talked about "the new york times" and their investigations,
thngr report we're now learning that many companies including apple and spotify and netflix. >> microsoft, amazon. >> that's right. theyeceived access to our data, and they were actually in proxy. so it's a very confusing type of way that they worked, but essentially they were workingrs undand facebook's arm, so they were thought of as part of facebook when they receivedour ta. >> earlier this year, the state legislature did pass a privacy law for californiaecause the fcc has really refused to take this up in the way that some folks would like themo in terms of protecting consumers. and that is going into effect in january. the attorney general is going to be holding these hearings around the state to try to get consumer input on wtthey think those privacy regulations should look like. so i would expect to see more on this from the california legislature next year because i think that there's going to be some problemsith that law they're going to have to work out. >> they are. they'll be spending the next ar working that out. it will look very different from what became an act in august.
>> what about at the federal level, though,ve because we h now a number of congressional lawmakers who are very concerned. i mean senator richard blumenthal of connecticut compared facebook's data privac proble the bp oil spill. he said it's ongoing, uncontned and toxic. we will be paying the price for decades. how likely are we gng to see tighter regulation of tech companies in 2019? >> that's the big question, but are several open investigations on the federal level that we'll be following into january and february. so we'll see where this shakes out. but i think that we will see more push for there to bere lations over time. >> and we had the other major astory this it's so horrible, the camp fire s just so much devastation. ree deadliest and most destructive wildfin california history. lily, how are the survivorsisof ire coping? >> it's been just over a month now since that fire ignited, and i think that, you know, emergency mode is now over. people have caught their breath,
and you see a lot of people in ghe butte county complex doing things like try to get their properties reassessed, taking care of theiraxroperty and trying to get them lowered. and, you know, that all -- all along, they were also trying to take care of their personal lives. a lot of them have kids, and they're trying to make sure their kids are okay and understanding what is going . so i think it's really that moment where we're kind of going to see what is communitylooks like. are people going to stay? i know a lot of people haveho already ht about leaving or have. and so i think what happens in the comingeeks and certainly in the first part of this year is really going to dictate how this story looks, you know, two, three years from now, ten years from now. areop going to bail on paradise, on butte county, or are theyoing to plant roots again and make it work? >> and what can we expect t see from mayor elect gavin newsom on this issue and from pg&e, that's
under a lot of investigation? >> that is thebi $1ion question, i think. i think this is an issue that the new governor is going to have to tackle i've heard speculation he could call aio special se about living with fire because i think that's something california s grapple with, with climate change, with drought, with the communities that do butt up against these rural areas. this isn't going but i don't think it's the first thing that newsom wanted to do, and i think he'oing to be under a microscope when it comes to his relationship with pg&e which is headquartered in san francisco. the executives there have a long relationship with him. >> i made a mistake earlier. i referred to him as mayor elect. i do now he was mayor of san francio. i doow that he is now going to be our governor. >> i was just going to add to that, though, it's crises that like these can really make or break apolitician. and gavin newsom, i think, you know, he has a lot of things he
would like to be his signature issue. climate change of course was a big one for his predecessor. i was thinking perhaps immigration might be one for gavin newsom. >> he's been stressing early childhood education as well. >> health care,>> yeah. my point is this might be the thing that defines how we view isim when thery books are written. >> i agree. it's a challenge because there are so many different groups that you are going toave to be sort of wading between when it comes to the insurance the homeowners, the local governments. and i think it's going to take a lot of leadership to step back atand talk about ways the state can really step in and not sure that we're building -- sort of making the same mistake over and over again. i think that's a really tgh one, maybe tougher than the utility question because we like local control in california. >> let's tal quickly about the midterm election because we had the blue wave. as part of that, welso had a pink wave. how has that affected california? >> we have now three of the
ven constitutional offices, statewide offices held by women. we have, ink th an uptick in women in the legnolature. stilcomplete sort of parity between men and women. i think there's lot of excitement, and i think you're going to see some of that me too legislation that came out last year continued purpose. we do have a leader of the state senate who is woman and gavin newsom's chief of staff as well. >> the pink wave also kind of extended to tech, right h we the google walkout on sexual misconduct > concerns. at's right. it really showed for the community at large and for women that they have the power. they made google essentially undo forced arbitration for women in sexual harassment cases. so its sh that when communities galvanize, when they get together employees, 2000 walked out, they can force change. >> they made a statement. we sort of have our own little pink wave he with our all women panel. thank you all.
>> thank you. let's switch gears to something lighter. paula poundstone is a star panelist on the npr quizshow, wait, wait, don't tell me, where she's known for her off the cuff humor. last year she published another book, the totally unscientific study of the search for human happiness. she's had her own tv variety show and she's on her second podcast called, nobody listens to paula poundstone. she refined her stand-up here in san francisco at tiny clubs in the 1980s. paula joins us now to reflect on her career and wrap up a wild year. paula, nice to have you here. >> thanks so much for having me. it's niceero be >> welcome back to san francisco. >> in cold, raw, san francisco. i've been shaivering since i've been here. >> you pretty much started your careehere. how does the city seem to you coming back? >> you know what everybody telle is it's really expensive to live here now. >> oh, yeah. >> which is -- that's probably not a good idea on the part
of -- i was just saying to somebody today, you know, the reon we could have such a creative, energetic stand-up comedy scene with a lot of ust to coming to town learn to do this job was because you could live here cheaply. >> yeah. well, not anymore. >> not anymore. but i mean it's going to hurt the arts at certain point even though i'm sure there will be a lot of good -- i bet y a have lot of stores that sell high-end kitchen things. to they have that? >> we haves that sell all kinds of high-end things, not just kitchen things. >> i think i ned one sauce pan when i lived here. but i picture it now being a place where everyone has a kitchen just full of thingsu tht use just for one specific task in the kitchen. are you a coo >> no, but i have a kitchen full of things for one specific task. >> yeah. >> you know, i was looking back
at some of your old performances here in san francisco, and you were he in the heyday of comedy in the bay area. >> it was fun. >> what are some of your fondest memories from that time? >> there was a bunch of us that went from club to club on open ike nights together because nobody -- only one or two people had cars. and on a monday night, you could do three open mike nights as a recall. there's a place called the holy city zoo backthere. there was the other cafe, and there -- well, the punchline. the punchline is still there, isn't it? and tre'snother place called cobb's pub. became yourliams friend during that time. >> yeah. robin was from here. he wasn't the same graduating clad- of st comic that i was. he was already a big, huge star by the time that i showedup. but he was very -- what's the word -- paternal, ithink, to lots of comics. he was a very generousman.
>> fast forward, you're now on the npr news quiz program, wait wait, don't tell me. very popular. how do you prepare for something like that? dothey tell you the topics in advance? >> no. we know the questions they're going to -- it's a wz kly news qhow, so we know the questions are going to be about news.ek's i use a fairly unusual and odsteful method, and not really successful metf preparing for the show. i hold the record for losses ona wait, , don't tell me. and people ask me all the time, they go -- people ask me if iy purposrow the matches. and the answer to that is no. i'm trying to win. >> do you think the other contestants cheat? >> yes. no one ever talks about the in d but it's there. yeah, i'm trying really hard to win. i read the -- or i skim anyway a week's worth of -- and don't tell this to anybody, but new york post i get "the new york post."
here's why i get it. so it has the major news stories, just not well told, and it also has ne of the weird. that's what kills you on wait, wait, don't tell me is the news of the weird, you know. >> there's a lot of weirdness, even stuff that's not meant to be weird. talk about the government t shutdown tas and wasn't but now may be again. what do you think about that? >> it's the whole thing is horrifying. every day i try to figure out why? how did get here? what happened? as near as i can tell, electing trump is to americans what beaching themselves is to whales. scientists don't understand it. there appears to be -- the only difference is we don't have anotuser species to shove back in the water. >> you're changing with the times. yew now doing podcasts. there are a lot of podcasts out there. >> there are tons of podcast. >> how challenging is it to come feup with something dint? >> well, it the not easy at all
bause at this point, the things that human beings have in common are b that weathe oxygen, we don't eat our young, and we have a podcast. so it isery difficult to sort of stand out in that crowd. but nobody listens t paula poundstone, it's just plain fun. that's what it. it's me and my partner adam, awe call it a comedy advice podcast. its number one jobis toe funny, but we bring on people that are experts in different topics, and topics that are -- we had a lady come talk about house mold. frankly it was very helpful. so even if you goou away and didn't find it hysterically funny, which i hope that you ll, but you at least come away with some good solid information about house mold. we try to make sure we try to at least deliveinformation. >> paula poundstone, thanks for being with us. i know you're back in the bay area on december 31st. you'll be performing at 8:00 p.m. at the sydney goldstein theater. >> new year's at the sidney
goldstein. >> what better waynd to s new year's eve? >> it's the best way. it's the healthiest thing in the laughing out the old year and laughing in the new year is a great thing to do. >> paula poundstone, nice to have you with us. thanks for having me. that will do it for us. tune in next week for our show about the arts i the bay area. then our special stand up san quentin the followingek woo. we'll return on january 11th with ouregular program. you can find more of our coverage at qeorg/newsroom. i'm thuy vu. have a wonderful holiday season, and thank you for joining us. ♪
robert: a breach in the cabinet and congress on the. bri i'm robert costa. welcome to "washington week." >> every nation h the right but the absolute duty to protect its borders and i citizens. without borders, we have the reign of chaos crime cartels. robert: president trump digs inq on his ruest for billions for border wall. rattling capitol hill and the markets. and he announces u.s. troops will leave syria. >> we've been fightingor a long time in syria. i've been president for almost two years. tnd we've really only stepped i up. and we have won against isis. robert: but leading republicans push back. >> to say they're defeat