tv [untitled] January 22, 2013 7:30pm-8:00pm EST
back to the big picture i'm tom hartman coming up in this half hour zero dark thirty is a box office smash it's also a misleading portrayal of how effective torture was in tracking down osama bin laden later in the show danny goldberg joins me to explain why we must continue to criticize the film that we hope to learn from the war crimes committed in the past and finally republicans in virginia stuck in election rigging plans for the state senate everyone who's folks focused on the inauguration will tell you what they did and more importantly why they did it and how it speaks to fundamental differences
between conservatives and liberals in tonight's daily take. in the best of the rest of the news the same voices well it is sort of a right but i'd say right across the board in today's gun debate have officially exit of the stage a week after president obama introduced a series of new gun reforms republican senate leader mitch mcconnell sudden e-mail to supporters saying quote you and i are literally surrounded the gun grabbers in the senate are about to launch an all out assault on the second amendment and your rights and your freedom he concluded the email by writing the gun grabbers are in full battle mode and they are serious so so much for trying to have an honest gun debate without with enough fear among the gun constituency but what the nation really needs is an honest debate about what the second amendment actually means and the. mystery surrounding its ratification some will argue that there's
a hidden history of the second amendment most americans and even many american historians have overlooked my next guest argues just that bogus is a professor of law at the roger williams university school of law he's held visiting positions at the rutgers camden and drexel university law schools is presently a visiting professor at the george washington university law school here in washington d.c. it's written spoken extensively about torts and the civil justice system gun control the second amendment and political ideology is the author and or editor of numerous books including the second amendment and long history historians and constitutional scholars on the right to bear arms and in one thousand nine hundred eighty wrote an article for the university of california davis law review titled the hidden history of the second amendment professor bogus welcome it's nice to be here during all that to have you here with us what's the relationship between the second amendment and slavery that was the essence of the hidden part of your yes that is so my thesis about the hidden history of the second amendment is that james
madison wrote the second amendment in the significant part. to assure his constituents in virginia and the south generally. that the federal government could not use its new constitutional powers over the militia which had previously been controlled by the states. to in directly subvert the slave system in the south by disarming the militia so there's a there's a book by believe her name is sally had i just started reading this a couple of weeks ago on the bottom third of the way into it it's called slave patrols and it's about the slave patrol system in virginia and the carolinas and she goes in all this detail and basically the militia at that time were also the slave patrols and there were independent institutions can you tell us what you have seldom the militia were primarily a slave control device in the south that is principally what they were
used for the south. wasn't slaving a very very large black population. in eastern virginia for example. the black population the enslaved black population outnumbered the white population there was all was fear carol actually of the slave revolt slave insurrections there had been so and the militia became. the primary mechanism of controlling slaves so much so that with some exceptions during the revolutionary war the south was very reluctant to send its militia to war against the british for fear that if the militia left. they would be vulnerable to slave revolt in the movie django unchained the
character played by leonardo dicaprio and other whites were asked the question why don't they just rise up and kill the whites the answer i guess our use. same is that yes there was a well regulated militia yes there was a whole variety of ways of controlling slaves but one essential ingredient was the slave patrol or the militia which were synonymous in the south. during this period now. you suggest that. james madison wrote the second amendment in order to get his colleagues in the virginia ratifying convention to go for ratification the constitution. v.-e. ratifying this is a complicated story yeah the but the. this very dramatic ratifying convention in richmond virginia in seven hundred eighty eight is of is an
important part of the story and what happened was this the constitution had been proposed in philadelphia by the founders in the summer of the seven hundred eighty seven. it would not take effect unless it was ratified by nine states and each state had ratifying conventions and. in july of seven hundred eighty seven of the gin you had it's ratifying convention in richmond. it's amazing to me by the way that somebody has made a movie out of this because in quite a dramatic moment it looked at that top line that if the junior didn't ratify there would not be another state to ratify eight had ratified but it looked at that point that it was either virginia would be the ninth and there would not be another ninth if the junior did not ratify and. it was a showdown between the anti-federalists led in richmond by
patrick henry who was components of the new constitution opponents of the new constitution patrick henry who was considered the greatest living. or rater of the town and george mason who was considered the brains of the intellectual heft of the at the federalists and james madison who was the leader of the federalist sen who had was the principal drafts person of the constitution and was the heir to it to argue for ratification. henry and mason raised many many arguments against ratification but one of them was this they say james they said in philadelphia you deprived you say that you deprived the federal government of authority to abolish slavery and there is a there is a kind of there's
a slave compromise in the constitution doesn't mention slavery but it's really discomfort. a compromise there's actually several yes there is that there is the several provisions that was agreed that the federal government did not have express authority to to abolish slavery they had a they had authority after a period of time to abolish the slave trade from africa but not slavery itself the genius by the way wanted them to do that because slick business virtuous ago yes well said virginia was a slave exporting state by that time so they said you have deprived the federal government of the authority to abolish slavery but they will want to do it and you have given them a mechanism to undermine the slaves system by disarming or militia. because the constitution said that the federal government would have the authority to organize the militia as congress saw a fit and to arm the militia among other authority and they argued this also meant
that if the federal government did not arm the militia. the states were prohibited from doing so because this is an article one section eight is. market's one battleship out of the constitution yes and madison said no no no no of course that's the can cover one paranoid gas and it's a covered power if if the federal government doesn't give our militia arms we'll give our militia arms and they ridiculed that argument and they said. listen you've divided the authority up over the militia between the federal government in the state government so for example the state government gets to appoint officers is that concurrent. and. so i believe that when madison the following year was sent off to the first congress and his political career was and some jeopardy at that point. that.
he pledged to write a bill of rights. that he thought he was basically solving this problem when he wrote the second amendment by allowing either the people that is militia men. or the states to arm the militia now he put it in terms of the of of the people because he didn't want to contradict anything in the many said a well regulated state not a well regulated country and you a well regulated militia being necessary part of that so the sunni unity of a free state the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be inthe right . now new hampshire actually ratified they were the ninth state to vote for education about three weeks before virginia yes this is so unlike that of the virginia knew that at the time but right so and in fact the high drama was happening what weeks or months in advance of that so that's those who would say well you know hampshire was actually the united states so this is a moot point yes it was not
a moot point they thought that they were in the midst of well it was unclear that they could possibly actually succeed without virginia it was the most populous state it was the richest state it was the home of washington and jefferson and madison and if it was right in the center of the states and if a junior didn't ratify. it it was practical and possibility perhaps how do you respond to people historians like paul finkelman who say that quote there is no evidence for a claim that there were slave insurrections that these substantial law prizing he said never took place it is not even remotely true. that the. one of you know the basis of your argument is that these people are white people in the south are living in fear and the the slave patrol militias were protecting them well actually the finkleman happens to be a good friend of mine and i don't recall him saying that but if he did he probably
knows more about it than i do but but the. the history that i'm aware of the the stone the revolt and others. and other slave insurrections that is that there were a number of slave insurrections as in the us as the one in stone south carolina which which was particularly bloody and the south was always in perpetual fear that slaves could revolt how could they not be yeah yeah really when you get when you consider the numbers in the population professor carl t. bogus thank you so much for being with us thank you for having me and tom really appreciate it. coming up do you know thomas hobbes was well you should because knowing him means you have an inside look into what's motivating today's conservative movement i'll explain in tonight's daily to.
worse you're going. white house to give a. radio. minute. what. if you've never seen anything like good control. let me let me i want to know wouldn't let me ask you a question. here on this network is what we're having a debate we have our knives out. the truth is this right to spank thing never again hearing this story would be an ideal way to
be honest with you. your friend. can help you. break you any questions. and while come back the film zero dark thirty has been in theaters for several weeks now and of course there has been no stranger to controversy the film depicts the manhunt for osama bin laden and seems to argue that torture played a significant role in finding it out of the al qaeda leader or as evidence in the real world shows that torture provided no such useful information despite the outrage from those on the left and the right who are horrified by bush's war crimes in a rage today that these war crimes are now being justified in the big screen. despite
all ad americans keep flocking to see the movie in fact just this last weekend zero dark thirty raked in nearly sixteen million at the box office bringing its total gross to more than fifty four million and now the movie is a box office smash doesn't that make criticism of it all the more important joining me now is danny goldberg he is the president of gold v. entertainment and author of the book bumping into genius is my life inside the rock n roll business danny welcome. great to see if the film's director kathryn bigelow recently said to the los angeles times confusing depiction with indorsement is the first step toward chile in any american artists ability do you think about. well i agree with that except it has nothing to do with the criticism i have of her film i've always argued i work with art is that i've been a big defender of not just the legal but the moral rights of artists who to use
metaphor and to express their ideas in a creative context without being held to some literalistic standard i hate those things when they have a list of three hundred murders committed on television and so on and so forth. but in her case she was propagandized by a faction in the cia according to the journalist michael hastings and that's that's an allegation that no one has denied and it was it was it was a propaganda effort by people that are trying to justify and defend the use of torture post nine eleven i lived in new york. when nine eleven happened and i can i can empathize with how freaked out people in the government must have been but but the idea of torturing prisoners it was a terrible idea it was terrible at abu ghraib it's something that we don't need to be safe and i think she she was a victim of two lies in the movie the little lie is what you just said which is that. the actual pursuit and capture of bin laden was the result of torture which
is imply. why as i process the film there are people that say that's not what the film says that's how i experience the film the bigger lie is the idea that we need to torture prisoners for us to be safe and it's very alarming because this isn't some abstract argument about the civil war it's going on at a time when there's a debate within the intelligence community within law enforcement within the military and the american public because of this propaganda effort that i believe acolytes of dick cheney have been in charge of has changed their opinion in two thousand and seven there was a poll that showed that fifty three percent of americans are opposed to torture under any circumstances of prisoners and by two thousand and twelve that was down to thirty four percent a drop of nineteen percent and i believe it's because of these constant messages through different advocacy and sometimes in the entertainment world propaganda to convince americans that they just can't be physically safe unless people are
tortured that's a lie it's immoral it undermines our ability to be safe i think in and out of mind the soul of the country so i respect you as an artist i understand why people like the movie these members of my family my kids both really found it an entertaining movie but there's a law in the core of it which is really corrosive to public policy the cia rather famously and loudly released my recollection is a similar three thousand page report basically saying torture didn't do any good. you know we didn't find anything useful the consequence of torture and my recollection is that that report came out long before the film came out. if she had been propagandized or the makers of this movie had been propagandized wouldn't there be a moment of holy cow we should have done that let's get back to editing or something you know it's hard to be a filmmaker it's hard to be an artist i am not concerned with judging her process
as an artist i'm concerned with the debate in our system. about how prisoners are treated and that we as as ethical human beings and as americans shouldn't torture people george washington that the torture tortured people to beat the british we didn't have to torture germans to beat the nazis and we don't have to torture people today to be safe as a country the book five hundred days by kurt eichenwald new york times reporter describes the debate between members of the f.b.i. and some factions of the cia about interrogation it's an argument going on in the government there are many people lot of a lifetime military people law enforcement people republicans who are profoundly against torture both because of its lack of effect of this in many instances and because of them are all consequences to the society but there are people who were justifying themselves for what they did post nine eleven and she was hoodwinked by those people chose to believe them and i think it's a fatal flaw of the film morally remarkable danny goldberg thank you so much thank you.
all the nation was hypnotized by the second inaugural of barack obama on tuesday republicans of virginia moved america closer to the place of vision and by the seventeenth century dystopic philosopher thomas obvious what they did is jam a new redistricting plan through the state senate that created more safe seats for republicans virtually assuring republican domination of the state senate come the next election in two years it was blatant election and get this the only reason why the measure passed a split state senate with twenty republicans and twenty democrats is because one of those democrats civil rights leader senator henry marsh was in washington d.c. attending the inauguration so with a single vote advantage for a single day republicans pounced just like republicans in pennsylvania pounce last
week when they introduced legislation to. ainge how their state allocates electoral college votes rather than winner take all system which granted president obama all of the state's twenty electoral college votes lies to barbara when he won the state republicans want votes handed out based on which congressional districts were won by each candidate why because they gerrymander the congressional districts in two thousand and ten under this scheme mitt romney would have actually won thirteen of the twenty electoral college votes votes of ania despite losing the statewide popular vote by four points against blatant election rigging. to make matters worse republican state lawmakers in michigan ohio and wisconsin are all considering similar changes that will make it virtually impossible for a democrat to win the white house in the near future as joe biden would say this is a b.f.d. but these efforts around the country are just to secure republican political victories over the next two to four years and beyond there are also two in the
opinion of conservatives save the nation from the evil natured masses they actually believe that by rigging elections to give them power they're saving america from the unwashed masses this mistrust of voters reveals the heart of the difference in world views between conservatives and liberals the conservative line of thinking comes from thomas hobbes as world view that man is inherently evil as hobbes describes the natural state of man our state of nature is a place where there is no place for industry because the fruit thereof is uncertain and consequently no culture of the earth no navigation or use of the commodities that may be imported by sea no commodious building no instruments of moving and removing such things require much force no knowledge of the face of the earth no account have time notes no letters no society and which is worst of all continual fear and danger of violent death and the life of man solitary poor nasty brutish
and short. as such we cannot be trusted to govern ourselves. instead we must be governed in hobbes's mind by a strong central authority like a king or a pope there's also a strain of calvinist thinking to this conservative fear of voters while calvinists in centuries past also concluded that the masses are for the most part wicked they also claim that there's a small group of individuals who have been pre-chosen by god to rule the rest of us they're known as the alack. how did we know who these special elections individuals were well the ones who were the rich and powerful because god made them so it's a very convenient ideology by the way for the rich and powerful to convince assaulter buy into it and it stuck for centuries as people were reduced to mere serfs or servants ruled by a benevolent king or an enlightened pope today kings and theocrats have been
largely pushed aside but this view that man is best governed by a small wealthy elite remains alive it's the core assumption of the conservative ideology that is each and every day eroding the power of the electorate in states across america it's why people like grover norquist would call for drowning american democracy in the bathtubs of oligarchy like the koch brothers and shoulda made them after all you just can't trust a government that offers free stuff like social security or universal health care to the rabble. which is which in liberalism is so important. it was john locke in the eighteenth century who forces first pushback against hobbes's state of nature and argued that man is not motivated by malice or fear but instead by reason and through reason we the people can actually govern
ourselves through laws based on reason to lock any sort of government that operates without the consent of the people and without reason should be overthrown needless to say hobbes's absolute kings and oligarchy derive their consent from god or or the riches and not from reason shouldn't exist unlocks world all of them only as the enlightenment moved along the locks idea prevailed over hobbes and it was in the tradition of john locke that our founding fathers became revolutionaries and overthrew the king of england and it was in the tradition of john locke that thomas jefferson fought with the early rose to spread democracy to more and more people to this day this issue of how much power voters should have compared to billionaires churches and corporations remains the fundamental point of cleavage between conservatives and liberals for the past thirty years the conservative worldview has prevailed in america since the reagan revolution it says we cannot trust the people to govern themselves and so we must trust the wealthy elite in the market to organize society and with the recent democracy suppressing efforts in virginia and
pennsylvania conservatives use this worldview to rationalize their behavior but now with president obama saying we the people five times in a second inaugural it's clear he's trying to put hobbes in his conservative ideology back into the dustbin of history and it's time that we as a nation ask ourselves a fundamental question are we capable of governing ourselves as john locke and thomas jefferson believed or should we simply let the modern day kings the billionaires run things as the days conservatives believe. our founding fathers answered that question with the declaration of independence and we now must answer it a new today. and that's the way it is tonight tuesday january twenty second twenty thirty and don't forget democracy begins when you get out there get active tag your it see the.