tv U.S. Senate CSPAN November 23, 2009 8:30am-12:00pm EST
media ownership rules? >> guest: the fcc has an obligation given to us by congress to review media ownership rules every two years. 2010 is a review year. in the past the fcc has missed its target date, and we're not going to do that. in fact, we've already started our ownership proceeding with a series of workshops here in 2009. it's consistent with our general goal of trying to handle difficult, complex issues in an open, participatory manner that focuses on the facts and the data and the goals and objectives that we have as a country. in this area, i think, there continues to be a concern about excessive consolidation in the media space. but there are also clearly changes going on many the marketplace that we'll pay attention to as well.
we see newspapers not only under pressure, but in some cases closing down, laying off employees. this isn't healthy. it's not healthy to see news gathering in our country under pressure. we need a vibrant media business, a vibrant news business in the country, and that's something that we'll be looking at as we look at the ownership rules. we'll be doing this in an open, fact-based way. it'll continue for quite some time, and we're looking for the broadest possible participation. >> host: and finally, julius genachowski, first quarter 2010, what other agenda items might we see? >> guest: well, we've touched on a series of issues that are very important to us, promoting universal broadband, unleashing spectrum, protecting and empowering consumers, helping bring our first responders and public safety into the 21st century. that's, that'll keep us going through the first quarter of 2010 and beyond.
singh. later in the week, american icons. three nights of c-span original documentaries beginning with the supreme court, thursday night. >> and now a government and renewable energy leaders talk about the future direction of u.s. energy policy. speakers include jeff bingaman and carol browner, assistant to the president for climate change and former epa administrator. they spoke at the american council on renewable energy's annual policy conference, this is about an hour. >> good morning. good morning, everyone. welcome to the eighth -- can you belief it? -- the eighth, yes, it's the eighth. used to be we would say welcome to the second and the third and how nice it is to come back again. and now time has flown. and we're at the eighth.
energy in america national policy conference, and what an honor it is to hold this annual review and think about where we're going in renewable energy in america here in the cannon caucus room. thank you for coming, and i hope you enjoy this day. i want to start by thanking the sponsors that have helped us produce the conference, ge and dow corning and next era energy and verizon. and believe it or not, that's the symbol of the danish embassy, the embassy of denmark, where we'll have a reception this evening. and thanks to ambassador peterson for being our host for that. it's a great place to go from here to think about where we're going next in copenhagen. and all of the other sponsors, berlin and smud, lockheed martin
is in our space, the largest government contractor in the world, clean edge and ethanol biomass and biodiesel, all these other companies helped produce this, and we thank them. to begin, let me remind us that the theory of this conference is called phase ii, and what does that mean? well, in 19 -- in 2004,acore defined this phase i, phase ii idea which is up until then it was a continuum. we're commercializing, and it's a big slog. suddenly we realize, no, that's not the way it is. there was actually an r&d phase and then a deployment phase. and we defined phase i as that period 1975 -- and i was late to the game myself, like many of you. i didn't join this industry until 1976. so i missed the first year. don't know what they did that
year. but 1975-2000, look, we had a great government-funded r&d program. during that period of time, the government invested almost exactly $100 billion in emergency technology, r&d. 50 billion in nuclear, 25 billion in fossil, 14 billion in renewable energy and 11 billion in efficiency. i'll speak for the 25 billion in renewables and efficiency only, and we declared in 2004 that, by gosh, this was a successful government program. it worked. look at the suite of technologies that has come from this program and that now has swept the world and is being deployed everywhere. a rare undeclared success. someday they'll declare it a success officially, but we declared it. and then we said, let's get on to phase ii. phase ii was putting these
technologies into use at scale, and it's not going to happen in a year. it's going to happen in 25 years. just the 25 it took to develop 'em. that's just the scaleup. you all know what an s curve looks like, this is the upscale of the s curve. there'll be a phase iii when it matures, when we're at 20% renewable energy in 2020 and 25% in 2025 and then we're maturing. this is the upscale. this is the tough part. this is the lift that we have to do here, and that's the purpose of this conference. to think through how are we going to do that? and each year we've had bigger and more bold ideas to see beyond this year's urgency and look ahead to what it's going to take to scale this up. so today's topics -- and i want to thank the co-chairs of this conference john geeseman, dan like art, katie mcbeginty,
hank havoc, andrew round qis and pat wood, who since august have been meeting in conference calls to plan what's the topic of this year? and we went through phases thinking, well, it's copenhagen. it must be steppingstone to copenhagen. then we thought, no, it's -- yes, it's a steppingstone to copenhagen, but, no, renewable energy scaleup is still its own task. we're not tagging on to some larger train here what it's going to take to put these technologies into use and scale it up is our own task. and the issues of today that will be discussed on this stage today, first, is the framework for policy. right now we have different perspectives from technology, industry, labor, finance, all different perspectives to be brought to bear in setting up the framework for the policies going forward. secondly, what is the u.s.
competitive position? we see the tsunami coming from the chinese renewable energy industry, we already saw it from denmark and germany and spain. now we have china coming. hey, folks, it's a global industry, and this is competition, and we're up to full speed. this is full speed competition. is the u.s. going to win this? are we going to have our fair share? are we going to have the manufacturing and service jobs in this country to do these installation, or is this an import business? i've been asked so many times by the export/import bank, mike, what do we need to do to increase exports of renewable energy from this country? and my answer consistently for eight years has been build factories with shipping docks from which we can export. that's what we need this this country now. that's this part of phase ii. next is how to finance the scaleup. we've had the u.s. partnership for renewable energy finance now, and they have estimated it will take 30-50 billion dollars
every year. not once, every year going forward to reach 20% by 2020. $30-$50 billion every year. and the most we've ever done in 2008 was 18. so the task ahead starting literally this week, tomorrow, is to double what we've ever done and do it every year going forward. can the government do that alone? absolutely not. will the congress make that kind of commitment? never. can wall street do it alone? absolutely not. how is it possible to do this? and that's the purpose of this conference. because this, clearly, is a partnership between the private sector and the government. we have to find a role for each and not all do the same thing. clearly, the money must come from the private sector. where is the money in this world? there's three big buckets of cash in the world, as you know. one is u.s. institutional investors with $18 trillion. the second is the middle east funds, and the third is china.
that's where the cash is. the government is in debt. it doesn't have cash. we've got to link u.s. institutional investors with their $18 trillion to invest, and there are long-term investors and we are a long-term opportunity, to our marketplace. that's the task, and we need government policy to create that bridge. there's the partnership right there. and lastly, constructing a policy solution that is truly bipartisan. there is no way we are going to scale up to 20% renewable energy by 2020 mobilizing 30-50 billion dollars every year going forward unless almost everyone agrees this is where our country's going. so that'll be the closing session today. lastly, i just want to have a sense of purpose in this room, in this magnificent room that is so motivating to all of us, to remind ourselves of the greatness of the founding fathers who were imagining this kind of a place exemplified by this room and combine that with our knowledge about the earth's
sensitivity and lack of resill generals and -- resilience and our desire for a sustained society. leading to the need to be honest and bold in this room, honest and bold in this room. those are the watch words for today, honest and bold. and a need to work together towards these solutions. so our goal today as admiral denny said last night, to quote, good and game-changing ideas that will become the policies of the united states tomorrow. with that, thank you for being here. welcome to today. i hope you get a lot out of today. it's my pleasure, now, to introduce the first of two co-chairmen of the american council on renewable energy. john geeseman was the executive directer the beginning of his career, spence 19 years then in finance, came back as the commissioner of the california energy commission and is given credit for much of the policies of the state of california that's the lead of our country. please welcome, john geesman.
[applause] >> i bring you greetings from the west coast. as historians look across the last several decades, our national energy policy they're likely to find common patterns no matter which party is in power. abdicated responsibilities, squandered opportunities, willful avoidance of unpleasant realities. recently, that's started to change. whether we recognize it or not, there is a race underway. most of the major economies of the world are striving to radically expand the size of
their domestic renewable energy markets in order to gain competitive advantage in the great growth industry of the 21st century. the president made a solemn commitment. sacramento would say, that's no girly man goal. [laughter] it's a clear, measurable metric with a report card coming due in a reelection year. we should all be held so accountable. the president set a very clear context by which to evaluate the various renewable energy standards being proposed, and we are all a nation of scorekeepers. as a country we don't have a particularly good track record in sticking with our commitments. i think some of you will
remember the unnerving glee with which the administration after carter yanked these solar collectors off the white house roof. in retrospect, that seems an awful lot like the energy policy equivalent of burning books. where are we now? to be candid, the waxman-markey bill falls a bit short. now, there is no question that energy efficiency should be the priority of any rational energy policy. but ever since the story in the old testament where abraham was asked to kill a son to show his spiritual devotion something in the human psyche rejects the concept of untenable chois. choices. an energy efficiency standard should live with a renewable energy standard, but they should live separately and not be
pitted against each other. the pragmatism necessary to get a renewable energy standard through the senate energy committee has been a disappointment that demands to be corrected as the process moves forward. but look at what we've accomplished this year. you know, we have an awful lot of lenders that still act z as -- as if they're on a bank holiday, but the rest of us are pumping pretty hard. i know what some of you movie buffs are thinking, where does this lead? [laughter] and we've got a lot of work to do to fill in that gap. the instruments that we rely on, tax incentives, budget appropriations, not a very appetizing mix when you think about scalability. we've got a problem to the extent that we are successful
going forward. these sniffs are going -- incentives are going to cost more and more and more money in our federal budget, and we need to start thinking about how to get some of them off-budget, off the burden on the taxpayer and onto the shoulders of the rate payer where they rightfully belong. i don't think we're ready yet. i suspect we're too stubborn to take many lessons from the experiences in old europe. but i have to say we ought to familiarize ourselves with the stack of reports coming out of the european commission and now out of -- the tally about the height of this podium, and they come to one single compelling conclusion, and that is that the feed-in tariff instrument has created more renewable energy at lower costs than any other single policy initiative tried anywhere else in the world. and we ought to go through the
federal power act and take away those burdens and barriers that some utilities say prevent those states that desire to go forward from doing so. our balkanized way of planning and permitting, licensing of our transmission system is not suitable for the 21st century, and yet proposals to give the federal government a greater level of authority are met with the predictable knee-jerk resistance from local authorities. and we have a proud tradition of local control land-use decisions in our country. but i would ask each of my former colleagues in the state regulatory community which one of you has been unfairly diminished by the decision made by congress several decades ago
to create a national licensing system for our natural gas pipelines? as a result of that decision, our gas distribution system is the infrastructure envy of the world. our economy is immeasurably more prosperous, our environment is infinitely cleaner. we ought to do the same thing with the electric transmission grid. it's a new day, a new approach is needed. you're not going to get adam smith out of the car, but the hands on the wheel ought to be steering in the national interest. the european union, china, brazil, even india, they're all raising the bar on what it takes to be a leading market in renewable energy. now, in these global endeavors
historically, quite often the united states has been a little bit late to the party. but after we get there, we have a way of making everyone know that we have arrived. finish this is our time. we need to make the best use of it. thank you very much. [applause] >> i think the watch words that i asked for this morning were honest and bold. thank you, john. that was honest and bold. and next we will hear, again, honest and bold thoughts from someone who's been on the firing line at nrdc as the assistant secretary for energy efficiency and with global energy of due in the 1990s then on into finance and now the directer of energy and climate at google. please welcome a man you know very well, dan reichardt.
>> thanks, mike. thanks, john, that was a spectacular opening. welcome, kathy, the new secretary for renewable energy, and thank you to our sponsors. this is really a wonderful event. so now, john, let me move from color, creativity, passion to the paper and pomp of washington d.c. i was asked to provide some brief opening thoughts to help frame today's policy discussion, and, you know, when it comes to renewable energy, i do, ip indeed, think we live in interesting times, or as one wag put it, the future is not as it used to be. in the old days, we would take a few steps toward and then -- forward and then a couple of small steps backwards. few took notice, and we just pushed on. but now that we're in the big leagues, our highs are higher
and i'm afraid our lows are lower. at this very moment in the midst of unprecedented economic security and environmental problems, we are seeing this dynamic in full. so if, in fact, the future is not what it used to be, the key question is, what comes next? i've always liked what alan kay, the computer scientist, said, and that is the best way to predict the future is to invent it. and we have so many ideas and, i think, this is what this conference is about. that is, how do we invent a future where we truly realize the potential of renewable energy? i had the opportunity to testify a few weeks ago in the senate environment committee, and it is not, as i said last night, where i got the black eye. this was on the kerry-boxer climate bill. my message, my message was that the critical need to address the climate crisis provides us with an unprecedented opportunity to rebuild our energy system with vast economic security and
environmental benefits. and i said that by putting significant limits on carbon emissions and -- and this is the key point -- adopting strong complimentary energy policies, we can, in fact, create millions of new jobs, we can reduce our dependence on foreign oil and we can, indeed, protect ourselves from a global climate crisis. last year at google we publishe a scenario called clean energy 2030 which outlines one potential path to a clean energy future. in sum, the clean energy 2030 proposal reduces u.s. co2 emissions about 50% below the baseline projection by 2030 while creating nine million new jobs and net savings of $800 billion. renewables, especially wind, solar and geothermal, build on a base of energy efficiency are the real winners in our scenario. at the global level, the international energy agency estimates that between 2007 and
2030 the world will need to invest $26.3 trillion in energy infrastructure to meet currently-projected demand. as john door at kleiner perkins has said, global energy spending could make clean technology the biggest economic opportunity for the 21st century. the ability of the u.s. to seize this historic economic opportunity will be influenced to a large extent by actions taken by government to put a significant price on carbon emissions. but a significant price on carbon, while absolutely necessary, is not sufficient to address the climate problem, and importantly, will not put the u.s. in the position to seize the extraordinary opportunities that will come with rebuilding our global energy economy. a significant price will definitely send a strong signal about the need to reduce carbon emissions, but it won't by itself insure that the
technologies that can address the problem are invented and deployed here in the united states. with massive resulting economic security and environmental benefits. i told the environment committee that there are four complimentary energy policy mechanisms that will be critical for our nation to take advantage of these opportunities. first, we must significantly increase public funding of research and development of advanced energy technologies. in 1980 10% of the total government r&d investment was in energy. today it is only 2%. the federal stimulus package has certainly provided a shot in the arm for clean energy projects, but there is serious risk of falling off a funding cliff when these investments run out. we were encouraged when president obama called for investing $15 billion per year over the next decade in clean energy technologies and took note when energy secretary chu said energy r&d spending must move closer to the levels in the
high-tech industry which are generally around 10% of sales. our failure to invest becomes glaringly apparent when we realize that barely a fifth of the top 30 manufacturers of wind turbines, solar panels and advanced batteries are american. in contrast, all five of the u.s., all five of the world's leading internet technology companies are from the u.s. and the internet itself was the product of federally-funded r&d by darpa in the 19 70s. let me stress that the private sector cannot completely fill -- i should say federally-funded r&d work by darpa in the 1970s, excuse me. we cannot fill the gap in energy r&d funding. the high-risk early-stage research funded by government that has brought us major breakthroughs in biotech, information technology and energy is generally not the province of venture capital investment or corporate
research. second, we must increase the capital available to deploy these advanced technologies at commercial scale. moving from a nation that derives 70% of its power from fossil technologies to one based largely on clean energy will require literally trillions of dollars of investment. the challenges at raising this kind of capital, especially for innovative technologies, is not easy. the problematic step of moving a technology from a small pilot project often funded by venture capital investment to full commercial-scale projects financed largely by the banks is frequently the point at which many promising energy technologies die. indeed, we call it the valley of death. at google we are major supporters of pending bipartisan senate legislation led by senators bingaman and murkowski that would create a clean energy deployment administration to provide various types of credit support to drive private investment in valley of death
projects. it would be an independent administration with m doe with senate-confirmed add morer and a board of directors. third, we must build a smarter and bigger electric grid to better harness renewable energy. a smarter grid will let us see our energy use, measure it, price it and manage it to get the most out of every watt. at google we're working to advance the smart grid on several fronts. our engineers have developed a simple, secure and free software tool called google power meter that gives consumers an easy means to see their home electricity use on their computer or smart phone. we've also developed and been testing a fleet of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and looking at how large numbers could actually help stabilize the friday and also provide massive storage capacity to support a vastly greater share of renewable generation, especially for the wind that doesn't always blow or the sun that doesn't always shine. beyond building a smarter grid,
we also need to build a bigger grid that will allow us to tap our nation's vast clean energy resources and deliver them where needed. citing new transmission capacity may, however, be the most vexing piece of the renewable energy puzzle and one where new policy, as you just heard from john, is critical if we're going to build thousands of miles of transmission lines across multiple state lines. fourth and finally, we must set national standards to accelerate the uptake of cleaner and more official technologies. ..
to help was lower the effect of green electrons by pairing them with improvements. just think what it 3% son -- a 3 cent per kilowatt hour could do for our homes. let me give three examples of complementary energy policies. one is solar thermal power. proving the technology and where state standards are driving demand and government-backed finance is helping get plants built. looking ahead, an advanced geothermal technology advanced geothermal technology, price on carbon could drive a new industry that could produce chief renewable energy 24 hours
a day. and offshore wind has a vast potential that could be driven by strong policy actions taken here in this very chamber. so when it comes to renewable energy, we can indeed predict the future by inventing it. this forum brings together profession false across an array of disciplines, well positioned to do so. what are we waiting for? thanks very much. [applause] >> thank you, dan. again, the watch words of today are honest and bold and it continues. i think we'll hear that same thing again as we have senator binghamton, the new mexico chairman of the senate energy committee here to share with us his view of where we are with renewable energy an where all this is going. without further ado, please welcome senator binghamton. [applause]
>> thank you very much for including me in your program today. let me start by thanking dan reicher for the great leadership he's provided on this issue for many years in many capacities, and he continues to be a very strong and peek difficult advocate for -- effective advocate for us on all these issues, so i appreciate that very much. as all of you know, the senate is focused owned health care reform and i assume that's what you're here to talk about. i do think that once we get past health care reform, and successfully, i believe, then we will be in a position to consider what can be done on energy and climate change hand that will be in the new year, at least as far as the senate is -- senate schedule is laid out for us. and i do think at that time we
can make significant steps toward this transition to a secure energy future, and to dealing with climate change. clearly, the market as it currently praise fails to appropriately factor in the costs of green house gas emissions on the environment, and the long-standing underinvestment in clean energy technologies is a danger to our economic security and our environmental future as well. putting a price on carbon is essential, and we are committed to doing that, but even with the corrected market, the scale of cleanup -- of clean energy investments that are needed to set a course that's sustainable for the future is a daunting undertaking. while there's immense promise in
the new energy technologies that are being developed in national laboratories, in universities, and startup technology companies throughout this country, we clearly have to have paired with that technology development sensible national policies to allow those technologies to achieve their potential and to help us deal with the challenges we face, so if we succeed if putting those sensible policies in place, then i think we can very effectively address our energy challenges, create new jobs here at home, deal with our climate change challenge. in june, the energy committee, dan referred to this, and much of what i'm going to talk about covers ground that he also just covered, but in june, our energy committee and the senate energy and natural resources committee reported a comprehensive energy
bill, it's the america clean energy leadership act of 2009, we reported that bill with a vote of 15-8. i believe it contains a series of policies that are needed to unlock our energy future, and let me just talk about three of these, that dan also referred to. first is a renewable electricity standard, to set a baseline of market demand for renewable energy. second is streamlined and more effective policies and procedures to site new electric transmission lines and third is the clean energy employment administration or ceeta, for the new clean energy technologies. starting with the new electricity renewable standard, this is a l policy that i've advocate that had we adopt at the national level for several
years now. in my view, we do need long-term market pull for clean energy sources, such as wind power and solar power and biomass and enhanced geothermal systems and i think everyone in this room probably agrees with that view. there are state renewable electricity standards, but there's inconsistency in coverage and in application, and i believe that the most effective l policy would be to have this done at a national level. in this congress, we have the opportunity finally to go ahead and establish a national renewable electricity standard. that will provide a more consistent signal to the market. such a standard is part of the climate legislation that passed through the house, it is also part of this bill that we have reported out of our senate energy committee. if enacted, it would accomplish two goals.
first, it would enhance the diversity of domestic electricity generation. second, it would position the united states to regain world technology lead in these areas. and these are both important goals. in energy, diversity of supply equals security of supply. if we want to protect electricity consumers over the long run, from harmful electric price flog situations, -- fluctuations, it mission all the sense in the world to have an electricity sector that is diversified in two important dimensions. diversified between centralized and distributed generation, that's one dimension, and secondly, diversified among the various sources of electricity generation. and in my view, a renewable electricity standard encourages both kinds of diversification. renewable electricity technologies can be ready implemented in the form of distributed generation.
and many of you could cite examples of how that is occurring. market certainty provided by renewable electricity standard, particularly helps renewable generation options that more closery resemble base load generation, suchs enhanced geothermal systems and concentrated solar power. our current system of off again-on again tax incentives just does not provide the kind of certainty that is needed, it tends to only provide incentives to knows forms of renewable power that can be built quickly, in particular to wind power. i support all forms of renewable energy, including wind power. i would like to see our incentives be effective for a wider range of generation technologies. a national renewable electricity
standard also will help the united states to regain leadership in the deployment and manufacturing and the development in manufacturing of renewable technologies. the reason is simple. technologies tend to be manufactured close to their principal markets. that's fairly why germany which does not have much in the way of sunlight, is a worldwide center for manufacturing of solar panels. they have a feed-in terry, it's created a vibrant market for solar technologies. the united states has traditionally had a strong intellectual leadership in creating these new technologies, of course, time and again, we have seen that our work in inventing new technologies here in this country has resulte resn the manufacturing occurring elsewhere and we need to try to head that who have. -- off. second issue i wanted to previously talk about is electric transmission.
it is closely connected to having an effective renewable electricity standard. it is ensuring that we have a transmission system that can effectively connect renewable resources to markets, and that can handle the particular challenges of intermittency that are associated with some renewable electricity sources. we've seen a lot of evolution in electricity markets over the last few decades as they've become more regional and more interstate in scope, but our system of serving those markets and customers by siting, building and paying for new transmission lines has not kept pace. we now are in a position where developers of renewable electricity resources are substantially impeded from making economic investments by the fractured system for aidfying and meeting both present and future transmission needs and for this reason, a
major focus of the bill we reported out of our committee has been to address the three most difficult issues in electricity transmission, and it is regional planning, secondly, siting authority and third, the allocation of costs for new transmission. i believe we have a successful startling point, for a bipartisan debate on this issue, on the senate floor. there may be additional improvements that are offered that we can adopt, but i think we have a solid basis for going forward with that debate. again, having a transparent and effective way of deciding where new electric transmission will be built, making sure that planned lines are not arbitrarily blocked, and ensuring that the costs of the lines are spread among all of
the legitimate beneficiaries of the lines are important policy goals. that most everybody involved with renewable energy can agree with. despite the importance of electricity transmission policy to building a renewable energy future, the politics surrounding this issue will be intense, and when we do get to a full senate debate on the issue, i'm sure we will see some of that politics in display. the third item i'd talk about is the need for comprehensive financial support for clean energy technology deployment. new energy -- new renewable energy technologies encounter major barriers, when it comes to obtaining the kind of support in the private financial sector that helps them to make the transition to commercially proven products. dan referred to the now
well-known valley of death, a place where good ideas wither for lack of sufficient capital. i was at a conference last week that google hosted where cutting edge venture capital firms are turning their focus toward clean energy technology. the type of projects they are pursuing is remarkable in terms of making major contributions to our energy future. but not surprisingly, many of these technologies are renewable energy technologies, others are technologies that are needed in order for renewable energy to become fully integrated into our energy systems, such as new forms of energy storage. but as attractive as these technologies are, we do need to
find ways to ensure that the capital is there to develop and deploy them. the federal government can make a big difference by using its ability to make focused patient investments to leverage and unlock private capital markets, where there are many billions of dollars of potential investment to bring these new technologies to a point where they can be deployed on the scale that would be necessary. the first title to our bill, which we reported out of our committee, is the clean energy deployment administration or ceta, it's designed to make the key investments to accelerate the clean energy technology that we need. senator makowski and i both co-sponsored that bill and introduced it prior to the markup. ceta will move a wide range of clean energy technologies from laboratory to the marketplace by
combining the technological expertise of the department of energy with a new and independently overseen cadre of business professionals who can craft the kind of support that entrepreneurs need to get through this so-called valley of death. ceda will also be empowered to aggregate smaller projects that might have trouble attracting capital investment because of their size. examples of this problem abound in the realm of energy efficiency and they need to be aggregated into larger initiatives that can be more ready financed. i believe that the investments we need in clean energy technology deployment cannot wait. most of the energy infrastructure that we build today will still be operating in the year 250. -- 2050 when our carbon dioxide emissions need to be substantially reduced. the investment choices that we make now will dramatically shape
the world in which our children and grandchildren will live and the longer we wait to address our clean energy challenges, the higher the hill will be that they have to climb. so i'm very hopeful that our proposal to establish ceda will be seen as the kind of response that is needed to this. to this serious problem. again, we won't make ceda happen without a strong push from experts who know the power and possibility of break-through renewable energy technologies best, and many of you in this room are in that group. congress will need encouragement to act. i hope you will all advocate for enactment of this provision. i've briefly outlined the three -- three of the key areas
that i believe are most important in the legislation we've reported out of our committee. a strong renewable electricity standard, effective electric transmission policies and a mechanism for providing strong financial support for these projects, and all three areas, we have a strong set he bipartisan provisions that need and deserve the support of the private sector. i hope that all of you will continue to advocate for these necessary steps,. for the transformation of our energy system and i look forward to working with you in this venture that we're all on to see this transition of our economy. again, thank you very much for including me in today's program. i wish you well and hope it's a very constructive and productive session. thank you. [applause]
>> it was suggested maybe someone would have a question. i'm glad to try to respond if anyone does. i assume i answered most of th them, but -- yes? [inaudible] >> would it expand which now? >> i don't know. that's the honest answer. i hope so. but i don't know. >> a lot of the policy development now is affected by regional differences. and could you address that and how we deal with that and try to get beyond -- we never get beyond it, of course, but how can we do better in that area? >> well, i think all -- in the
time i've been on the energy committee, i've noticed that many of the issues that we deal with, energy-related issues, are -- divide along regional lines rather than on partisan lines and that of course causes complications and difficulties. it also though helps to break down partisan divide. and i think that it allows us to develop alliances across the political aisle with senators from our region of the country. so i don't know that it's a bad thing. i think the truth is, all of these issues sort of have a dynamic of their own, your allies on one issue are going to be your sworn opponents on the next issue, and that's the nature of the congress, and the nature of the legislating process, and i think that's clearly true in the case of energy.
yes? [inaudible] -- but my question is, what is the extent to which you thought about implementing and expanding ceda that would fund on a short-term basis establish technologies so the smaller renewalble energy projects could get in place, given the shortage of lending and shortage of fact equity? >> i think we're in a period where there's a shortage of lending for well-demonstrated renewable energy projects, and clearly, we need to try to find ways to assist that. i would -- myself, i would not want to see ceda try to solve that problem. that is a short-term problem. i see ceda solving the longer term project of how do you see technologies become commercialized and i would see
ceda has building the first two, three, four of a particular plan that we would need. i would nod see ceda arizona building -- ceda as building the 101st, an 102 and 103r 103rd plants. i think they would under any normal circumstance. >> we're honored to have you. thank you so much. [applause] >> thank you senator bingham. it's my pleasure to introduce the administrator of the environmental protection agency under president clinton, and
went on to have a very distinguished role in the energy business and policy world. it is my great pleasure to introduce carol brownard. >> [applause] >> thank you, dan, for that introduction, and it is indeed a pleasure to be here. with all of you and to of course follow chairman bingaman. i have the distinct honor of being part of an administration of working for a president who believes and is working hard to change the energy future of both our country and the world. and with the support of many of you here today, one of the first things he was panel to do was sign the recovery act. and i think as many of you know, and dan was an instrumental part in helping to create that act, $80 billion in clean energy investment. "new york times" called the recovery act the largest energy bill to ever pass the united states congress, and i think we
would certainly all agree. we're proud of what's happening with the recovery act. many of you are part of making it a success. the money is rolling out the door, the department of energy is doing a fabulous job. we're seeing, you know, moth ball plants reopening, there is a factory in pennsylvania because of a tax credit was rehired people they had laid off to make energy efficient windows and doors so that families can upgrade their houses, take advantage of another tax credit. the state weatherization programs are expanding. they finally have received their money, they're moving it out into the community. just a couple of week ago, the vice-president laid out plans for what we call a national retrofit, a revamping of the retrofit programs for this country and really, the list goes on and on and on. one of the greatest pieces of news we've had in the last couple of weeks is a number of the larger programs are oversubscribed. there were literally more people
prepared to put private dollars on the table with a match or a tax credit or a grant from the federal government, than we actually had money to honor, and i think that's just a sign of what's happening in this industry. we are finally starting to rebuild the clean energy industry in this country and we believe what we're doing is we're laying the groundwork, not just for making sure that we have all we need here for a different energy future, but that we can lead the global demand in clean energy technology. we've also taken very seriously from day one our existing authorities. there were lots of laws on the books and lots of opportunity to implement those laws. for example, early on in the administration, we saw something happen between secretary lahood at transportation, administrator jackson at epa that had never happened before. they came together and they crafted a single policy for the automobile manufacturers, and said, what we want is more efficient cars and we want the first ever green house gas standards for cars. what the company said to them
is, we want to be there, but we can't have two different regulatory regimes. we can't have two different enforcement strategies, and so they were able to combine their forces, epa and d.o.t. and create one point of compliance, and what the american people are going to get is far more efficient and cleaner cars. congress had said to detroit and to the auto manufacturers, you're going of to -- make cars that are 35 miles per gallon by 2020. what this proposal does is say in 2016, the standard will be 35.5. so by working together, we were able to achieve more than even congress thought was possible. we've also, kathy zoi is here, there was a backlog, she was moving through -- it's been almost a month now, almost, putting in place the standards that are going to give consumers choices so that they cannot only get the apprises they want but
they can -- appliances they want but the savings and we are excited about all the work that cathy is doing on setting the appliance standards. we've also been doing work at our other agencies, the department of ag is developing their biomass program and the list of existing authorities that we putting to use, authorities that in some instances have been been the books for a very long time, but no one has taken advantage of and so the president believes that from the recovery act to instructing his cabinet members to use these authorities, we are demonstrating important domestic leadership on how we can go about creating a new energy future. and our work hasn't simply been domestic. it doesn't stop at our borders. earlier this year, the president was able to achieve an agreement at the g-20, to phase out fossil fuel subsidies, a very, very important agreement. we similarly were able to achieve an agreement around black carbon and the arctic,
another important agreement, and then earlier this week, you may have seen the news of the agreement that was reached in china, i think it's an important agreement, you have in the communique both countries speaking to all the component parts of the bali road map, it is a real turn of events with respect to china. for the first time ever, they commit to make significant efforts towards mitigation. they agree to do so in a transparent and open manner. we think this is a very, very good lead into copenhagen coming very soon. i guess in about three weeks, and i'm sure many of you will find your way there. now, it's not going to achieve a binding internal agreement, but it is going to achieve a very important establish towards action. what we are hoping will be possible is what's now being referred to as a prompt start accord, that countries will undertake and commit to
enforceable domestic actions, that there will be a real demonstration of what each individual company is willing to do, that it will be verifiable, that it will be transparent. we will then spend the course of the next six to 12 months finalizing a binding international agreement. obviously, everyone had hoped that would be possible in december, people have worked very hard, the danes and prime minister rasmussen realized in september, as the talks were going on, that that was going to be difficult, and i think he very appropriately in a speech in september, helped everyone see that there were other opportunities, and that we could take advantage of this meeting to take a significant step forward. now let me spend just a few minutes talking about what i spend a lot of my time on, which is the domestic legislation and while health care is clearly dominating the news these days, you can turn on the tv offer pick up a newspaper without
hearing about this or that issue around health care, that doesn't mean there's not a lot going on on comprehensive energy reform and when we talk about comprehensive energy reform, when the president talks about it, what we mean are really three thing. first, we need to break our dependence on foreign oil. we need to put in place the production capacity, we need to look at alternatives, like natural gas, fuel our fleets, but we need to begin the work of breaking our dependence on foreign oil. secondly, we need the policies that will create a new generation of clean energy jobs, we're seeing that this is possible in the recovery act, it should give awful -- all of us hope, but others who have not followed this, it should give them hope that we can have a new energy of clean energy jobs. senator bingham talked about how renewable energy standard will help to stimulate the creation of jobs.
some of the investments we've making in the recovery act are helping to demonstrate that, but we need to make sure that comprehensive energy legislation takes us further down that path and secures us as a global leader in ethylene energy technology world and finally, we need to put a cap on the dangerous pollutants that contribute to global warming and climate change. we are very, very pleased with the leadership in the house was amazing. chairman waxman, representative markey and speaker pelosi, that pill was obviously historic. i think that it is a very good outline of what the component parts should be. we now have had two committees act in the senate, senator bingaman's committee, senator boxer's committee has now done their part on the cap side of the equation, and i think noteworthy in building on all of that leadership is the recent
op-ed biosphere kerry and senator graham. senator graham called me about two months ago and he said carol, i'm not going to be able to be with your administration on a lot of things, but i'm going to be there on this, and it was a surprising phone call and then he said, and when i say this, i mean cap and trade, and so i think we're beginning to see the outline of what a bipartisan bill might look like in the house. we obviously have other committee chairs with important jurisdiction, senator baucus -- >> we'll leave this event at this point to go live to the national press club now. a new report claims that reducing climate change and creating so-called green jobs are key factors for economic growth. and reducing worldwide poverty and hunger, the release of studies detailing these findings at this news conference at the press club. this is live coverage on c-span2. >> it's an annual report that looks at some of the systemic issues that address -- that face
foreign hungry people, an we use it internally within the organization as a tool to help develop our policy agenda, and we use it also to educate members and our grassroots. today is the on-line launch of the report. you'll find our web site, www.bread.org/hunger report, you have all the data that's in the reports, we will launch the report again in hard copy in january. i'm really excited about the panel we have today, and i'll turn it over to david beckman to introduce the panel. thanks. >> good morning. thank you for coming. i am david beckman, the president of both bread for the world and bread for the world institute. bread for the world is a collective christian voice, that urges our nation's decision
makers to end hunger in our country and around the world. and the work of bread for the world institute, the analytical and educational work is a crucial complement to what we do to try to get our country to adopt policies that are good for hungry and poor peevmen people. bread for the world's institute's new report paints a vision of economic recovery that is just an sustainable. the economic crisis has driven lots of people into hunger in our own country and around the world. and we're arguing that unless we address the problems of hunger and unemployment, and climate change, we're not going to have a recovery that's worth the name, we're not going of to a recovery that's sustain -- going to have a recovery that's sustainable. we risk having a recovery that would be another bubble. more than one in five of america's kids now lives in a
household that runs out of food, 22.5% of our children. this recession is going to have -- do long-term damage to lots of american children. and one in 10 workers in our country is unemployed. if the recovery -- until the recovery reduces hunger, and unemployment, it is not a recovery worth the name. and if we have some kind of economic recovery, and a large fraction of our population is still in financial crisis, it's unlikely that we will have sustained economic growth. so bread for the world is going to be campaigning to strengthen the child nutrition programs in next year's big debate on taxes, we're going to be pushing to
protect tax provisions that protect poor working families, so these families can put food on the table for their children. those poverty issues we see as a crucial part of recovery for the whole society, we also need to deal with climate change. climate change is real, it's not going to go away, so we focus on hunger in poor countries, and we can see in africa and asia that climate change is already affecting the productivity of small-scale farmers, climate change poses a real threat of increasing hunger and poverty and the world and in our own country, if we gin up economic growth, without paying attention to the real environmental constraints, we're likely to run into a wall. we'll have to make those changes hand so then the economic growth will be another bubble.
on the other hand, if we decide that we're going to deal with climate change, that will provoke lots of investments to green our economy hand it will create lots of jobs, put people to work, as we go through the process of greening our economy. our speakers this morning will be addressing issues that are usually considered different conversations. bob green seen, the head of the center on budget and policy priorities, will be talking about how we should be addressing poverty as part of our economic recovery program. leonard -- reverend leonard yearwood the head of the hip-hop caucus will be talking about green jobs and the policy dire director of oysfam will be
talking about reducing green house gases in the sum mitt in copenhagen. all of these difficult issues need to be addressed together if we're going to have a recovery that is just and sustainable and solid. bob? >> thank you, david. we know that we're in the midst of the deepest downturn in decades, but i'd like to back up a bit. and talk first about the economic recovery that preceded the current downturn, which started at the end of 2001 and ran through the end of 2007. now, the reason i'm bringing this up, is that we have a norm l hall cycle -- normal cycle, during periods of economic growth, employment increases and
poverty declines and during recessions, unemployment rises and poverty rises with it. however, what happened in the last recovery is we had virtually no decline in poverty. the median income of the typical working aged household in the united states was no higher at the end of the recovery than at the bottom of the previous recession. this hadn't happened in recent history. well, what it meant was that we went into this recession with an unusually high level of poverty to begin with and the increases in poverty came on top of that. and the reason that the previous recovery was so disappointing in this regard, is that the gains, the economic gains from it, were remarkably unevenly shared. latest data suggests that as much as two-thirds of the
economic gains may have gone to people at the top of the income scale. and that the share of income in 2007, the last recovery year, that went to the top 1% of the population was at its highest level since 1928. so here we are now, we have 10.2% unemployment, the census data tell us that there were 39.8 million americans living in poverty, but that was in 2008, when unemployment was lower, the number is clearly significantly above that now. last week, we got new food and security data. and they reflected the impact, the first part of the impact of the economic downturn. on issues of food and security. so we're at a time of significant hardship and given the previous dixes that unemployment will remain around the 10% level for perhaps another year and then decline slowly over several years after that. we have a number of years of
significant levels of hardship facing us straight ahead he. having said that, if that's the bad news part of the context. better news part of the context is that effective public policy can make a big difference. it sounds strange to say, but could have been much worse. we really were on the edge of a precipice last winter. we had a three-month period where we were losing three quarters of a million jobs every month and we recently completed an analysis of the economic recovery package that was enacted last february and we find using the broader definition of poverty and the earned income credit, the recovery package is resulting in six million fewer people falling into poverty than would otherwise have been the case, given the severity of the recession.
things in that package like substantial increases in food stamp benefits, increases in both the size and the duration of unemployment insurance benefits, $140 billion over two years in fiscal relief to state governments without which they would have cut programs, many of which serve needy people much more deeply than they're doing, all of these things have both reduced the hardship that lessens the increase in hardship that would otherwise have occurred, and they've also created a lot of jobs, by putting more money into people's pockets. there's often a mistaken impression that in recessions, one just gives tax cuts, say, to businesses. businesses have a responsibility to their shareholders. they can't employ more people than the goods they can produce can actually sell in the market. if you don't have customers with money in their pockets, it doesn't matter how much tax cuts you give to firms, it will mostly go into their bottom
lines, they'll save it for a time when, if they employ more people and produce more goods, somebody will actually buy them. so economists tell us these have been among the most effective job preservation aspects of the stimulus package. now where do we go from here he? well, i think we're all hoping that we're going to build on the effective parts of the recovery package, that we're going to clearly, i think, extend unemployment benefits. we can't allow the additional weeks of benefits to end at the end of december. i think congress will extend those. we're learning that we need the federal government to act quickly to provide additional funding to states for administrative costs and operating the food stamp program. so many people are in need now that in growing numbers of areas of the country, you may have to wait a month or two just to get an appointment to be allowed to apply for food stamps, which not only increase he is hardship,
but it undercuts the economic effectiveness of the food stamp increases part of the package, and our view at the center on budget, we need substantial increases in fiscal relief for states without which, in the career ahead, there will be a new round of budget cuts, much deeper than those that have occurred to date, and much more damaging to job growth as well as to the needs of people who were facing hardship and strug tolling get by day-to-day in this economic downturn. having said all of that, i started by referring to the previous recovery, because looking forward, the question is, how does the next recovery be different than the last one? how do we make sure the gains are more evenly shared? and that they operate as recoveries used to, in ways that reduce poverty and reduce hunger. and that's really what the bread for the world report that's released today looks to do.
it's a more visionary report that doesn't look just at the immediate hardship and the economic downturn, but has a bigger, bolder vision, looking forward. and that is, i think, precisely what we need. you know, the president has set a goal to end child hunger in this country by 2015. and sometimes in the past, we've had too narrow a focus. we've sometimes thought, if only we make the federal food assistance programs for children stronger. what we increasingly understand is that's a necessary but not sufficient part of the range thing that we need to do, without which we'll still have significant child hunger, and bread for the world is, i think, quite appropriately, david mentioned it, lifting up another key issue, it's for the future, but congress will decide on it in the year ahead, and i think bread is lifting up and it's offering of letters, this is the
focus as well. that's the following. in the recovery package, there's a two-year, temporary -- there's a set of two year temporary provisions that include recommendations, people working on child poverty have been making for a number of years, to substantially improve the refundable tax credits, the earned income credit and the child tax credit for low income families with children. these have a robust effect, they estimate 1.5 million people out of poverty, and many millions more who are still in poverty are made significantly less poor by them. these are temporary provisions, so they're slated to expire at the end of 2010. the president has proposed making them permanent in his last budget, and he proposed offsets by closing various unproductive tax loopholes to
pay for them, so this can be done without reducing the deficit. this will be one of the most important tests our policymakers face in the year ahead. they have a path out there for them, by which they can increase the efficiency of the tax codes, significantly reduce child hunger. one more key building block in moving towards eliminating child hunger by 2015, and do it in a deficit neutral fashion. so i just mention that as one key example of the larger vision that's reflected in the report, and in the work with its offering of letters that bread for the world is highlighting in the year ahead. >> thank you so much.
that's a pleasure. my name is reverend lenox yearwood junior. he might have up stumbled on my first name a little bit, because everybody calls me rev, so it's almost like everybody says rev yearwood. you can all call me rev too. it's an honor to be here nor this discussion. the hip-hop caucus has a great task of convincing people to google retrofitting before me gag l l rihanna -- google rihanna, so we have a tough task ahead of us to make that happen. but the reality though, is that for our generation, this is our clean energy -- energy movement, as it was for the 20th centur 20th century. our generation must have the
clean energy movement for the 21st century. in the last century, they were dealing with drinking from the same water fountains and going to the same pools. being able to go to the same hotels. and we came together as a country, black and white, brown and yellow, male and female, christian, jew and muslim. we came together to defeat that. but now we're not dealing with just equality. our generation is dealing with existence. we don't get this problem solved literally humanity ceases and we don't fix the problem now with global warming and climate change, nine years into the 21st century, there could possibly not be a 22nd century. and so our generation is not dealing with with so much the civil rights movement, as we
must organize and mobilize and energy highs for a clean energy movement, that's why i'm so happy that bread for the world wrote this outstanding report, a just and sustainable recovery, hunger, 2010. which really outlines fighting poverty, hunger, and pollution at the same time. just two years ago, you -- people weren't really talking about green jobs. it really wasn't on the lips of america. it wasn't something that people where i work with, either in the bronx or in compton or in chicago, or in north, they weren't talking about green jobs, but they're talking about green jobs today. most of our green jobs in west virginia and kentucky and louisville, all around our wonderful country, they're
discussing green jobs and i think there's a hunger to fix the two most critical problems of our day, our economic catastrophe and our climate crisis. if there's ever two times we want to put two words together, are the two word, climate and crisis. but we're there. but out of a climate crisis, the two sides to crisis, there is the one side that is danger and if we do not fix what is wrong with our climate, there's no more snow on mount kill man jar row, there's now huge lakes in the greenland, the arctic is beginning to melt away, there's asthma, there's cancer, we saw katrina. if we don't fix the climate crisis, and we move toward a catastrophe, but the other side of crisis, there are two sides
to crisis. there's crisis on one side, but there's also opportunity. we have the opportunity to fight poverty and pollution at the same time. and we can also put the people who most need work and give them the jobs that we most need to be done, the jobs are retrofitting and weatherizing and building solar panels. these jobs that can be done in america, that can put folks back to work in the southeast, that can put folks back to work in the bronx, that can put folks back to work in rural west virginia. these jobs, that can only be done here. the job that can fix our climate crisis, that can give folks opportunity, give them hope, give them a job, so they can put food back on the table. this moment is where we are right now. a greenway that can lift all boats, but to do that, there are
a few things that we must do. one, i will continue to encourage congress and our president to be -- push hard on fixing and having a climate legislation that has a strong green jobs and clean energy jobs component. and two, really finding training for our people. we might have follow slow down a little bit, for the troops who are coming home and give them the training they need to fill some of these green jobs. we might have to take a little time for the folks who didn't do so well in high school in indianapolis, to give them the training that they need to figure out how to put on solar panels. but if we can do that, not only can we save our planet, but we can end hunger in the corners and the byways of america. let me close by saying this. for my generation, this is our
lunch counter moment. for the 21st century. the lunch counter moment for the 21st century in salina because they couldn't be served. in this generation, we'll be judged by other children's children and they won't care if we're democrat or republican, they'll look back and say did you care about humanity. did you care about the fact that the earth was heating up. did you care about the fact that now we can't breathe? did you take the time to move away from fossil fuels and take the solar energy and harness -- did you take that time to do that? on october 24, me and a bill mc kibben led the largest rally
around this globe. there were hundreds of rallies, 350.org, and we did that and it was out standing. but if we don't come together now as americans, we could lose everything. but on that day, i started that day not going to the rally for climate change. i started that rally going to the funeral for devonte artist. a 14 yelled student who was killed in a drive-by over here on northeast. i started that day looking at a casket of a too familiar scene. a young boy whose neighborhood had lost hope, and they were rehe solving to shooting and killing one another and i started that day thinking about what we can do as americans.
and we can bring hope back. we can fight poverty and pollution at the same time. we can give those kids in the hoods jobs, we can begin to give them hope again. this is our lunch counter moment. for the 21st century. i pray humanity needs to challenge. thank you. >> wow, that's a tough act to follow. but an inspiring one, and i think my demeanor is probably not as engaging, but it's no less heartfelt and i thank the reverend for his very motivational comments. so my -- i work for oxfam, an
international development agency with offices in about 100 countries around the world and what i wanted to bring this morning, first of all is thanks and congratulations to bread to the world and bread for the world institute and s aasa p who put together a great report and forward thinking in looking at the recovery we're hopefully beginning right now and how to do things for the future and i was just having a look at the web site before this, and it's pretty cool, so i recommend it to all of you. it's got some great sort of visual tuesday. -- tools. for those of us working on global hunger and poverty, the last couple years has felt like reeling from crisis to crisis, even before we were gripped in crisis in this country, poor people around the world were gripped in 2007 and 2008 in a price crisis around food. food prices were spiraling out of control around the world, there were food riots in many countries, prices had risen over
about a three-year period by 83% on basic food commodities. we felt it in this country, but it was a near crisis in many countries around the world and became a political crisis in two countries. that seemed terrible and it was terrible and hunger was on the increase as a result of the rising food prices. and then the economic crisis hit. starting in the fall of last year. there was a small blessing in the economic crisis, which was that it tended to moderate food prices, because global demand came down and so food price increases began to float down, although prices remained higher than their historical average. but it didn't have the benefit of reducing hunger. in fact, the global economic crisis has created an income crisis among the poorest people, so now they have less money to buy food and hunger again is on the rise, or leaping upward again from where it was. the best estimates now are that
globally, about a billion people, a little over a billion people, face hunger. and this is sort of a milestone, in human history. a billion people, about one in six of humanity facing hunger and a massive challenge. earlier, global leaders promised to try to reduce by half the number of hungry people around the world. this was a -- seen as a very ambitious challenge, but we're not even coming close to making progress on that challenge. we're actually going backward in terms of the absolute number of people hungry around the world. so now we're in the grip of this economic crisis, which is flowing through into developing countries, and on the horizon is the next crisis. the climate crisis. the climate crisis is something that's much talked about, but it is already being experienced by millions of people around the world. david made mention of the early
signs that weather events, storms and droughts, are occurring with more frequency, and often with more vigor, and the projections are all very, very dangerous for hunger around the world. researchers in rice, which feeds about half of humanity as a staple food is that for every one degree increase in temperature, there's something like a 6% to 10% decrease in rice productivity. so if you think the world is headed towards two or three or four degrees increase, that's a pretty massive blow to the basic staple crop for half of humanity. :
>> there's now no global agreement to take action on climate change. the hope is that sometime in 2010, such an agreement would be forthcoming. we're waiting in this country to take action to pass domestic legislation. that also is pushed back to 2010 at the earlier. this is our challenge. but as other speakers have said, in the challenge is also an opportunity. because measures taken to address all of these crises, the food crisis, the economic
crisis, and the climate crisis, can be interwoven, and have a profor, and prohunger outcome if they are designed well. this is our narrow challenge as advocates and lobbyist is to first of all intergrate these responses. some of them have occurred in isolation. but you the speakers talking about them as interwoven. and i do think they are. certainly for poor people, they are feeling the crisis in synergies and on top of one another and reeling from one to the next. so in this country we've mobilized billions of dollars of fuel -- trillions of dollars to do with the economic crisis. and billions of dollars to deal with the food crisis. in the near future, if we do take action, we'll mobilized hundreds of billions of dollars more to deal with climate change.
basically, putting a price on climate. which creates large new revenue flows. which are available for various purposes. right now in the congressional bills, most of the value on the price of carbon will go to polluters. that'll hopefully be a transition. and the value of that solution will be transferred to people. i want to -- just a few words about growth. in developed economies like ours, growth tends to be slow. we have big economies. but slow growth. in developing countries, the economies of growth is very high. for the future, most of the economic growth in the world will be happening in other countries. that means that our own economic future is much more tied to the economic futures of other countries. and in particular, growing in developing countries where most poor people reside. i think that give us us a stake in their economies.
and open to a better integration with them, more cooperation, and a focus on their -- not just poverty in this country, but reducing poverty and increasing economic activity and increasing demand in those countries. in that way, i want to say that there's a risk right now. as budgets get tighter, and as soon as we're through this, we know that we're going to have to go through a very painful process of reducing our federal deficits. but in that process, i think it's in our own interest very strongly to maintain our assistance to developing countries for poverty and hunger-related assistance to our friends in other countries where i think we see our own interest in their growth. this administration has been very forward leaning, they've been making commitments to large new programs in poverty and hunger. president obama has made several announcements around the food
security initiative. president obama has promised to double aid for agriculture. and all of this is encouraging. but it needs to be followed through over the next, in particular congress needs to run along. and in addition, the administration has launched an effort to really review our a programs. to make sure we are getting the value for our dollar. i think this is the other side of maintaining, or increasing a is to make sure we're getting the biggest impact. the most poverty reduction, making sure they are effective as producing hunger. these efforts, i think, are critical not just as charity, but in our own interest for the future. and these investments, ideally, will generate growth. but also importantly, improve the resilience of people shocks as they come, the economic, price, and climate shocks are more survivallable. people have more tools to deal with them. and can recover quicker when
they are given a shock. so that's where i think the world paper is important in thinking about the quality of our recover by of we don't want to go back to where we were. a very highly leveraged economy where people were very vulnerable. speaking of our own people. our homeowners with very high leverage mortgages, our financial institutions which were very fragile when the bottom came out. we needs to think about more resilience for people. so thanks for your coming to this. thanks very much for the insight on this paper. >> so what we're saying is in the middle of this economic crisis, to do the right thing. and if we to the right thing. that's the smart thing. and it just maybe the crisis is bad enough that it convinces us to do the right thing, and to make a future for ourselves. and there's many just than in
the past. all of the questions for any of the speakers if you want to address your question to a speaker, that's -- i'll just pass them over to him. also, with this morning is todd post who is the editor of the hunger report. and so if he's also available to help us with questions. yes, let's -- why don't we start first with press. if there are press questions, those start with those. yeah, identify yourselves as you take the mic please. >> yes. i'm with a media. i guess this would be particularly to reverend david beckmann, but anyone else that might have insight. the press release i see you are
mentioning that green jobs potentially could be worse than four million manufacturing jobs loss into the recession, and what what -- could you be more detailed as far as what the jobs would be and how you see this happening? does anyone else think this is a possibility? >> sure. also. the reverend may know more about it than i do. the kinds of -- as we -- if we shift forwards green jobs, some of that shift would be public works programs that would directly employ people who are unemployed to weatherize schools, weatherize low-income housing. and also if you change the prices, the price of energy basically. if you put a price on carbon, it'll change how we do developments. it provokes a lot of investment
opportunities. and that'll create a lot of jobs. just that shift will create a lot of new jobs. the jobs that we think are mainly in infrastructure, updating how our buildings function, and also in manufacturing. they tend to be the, the kinds of things that need to happen in order to make our economy greener are things that can only happen here. they are domestic activities. they are likely to create lots of jobs. compared to investment in some other areas. so the numbers that we site are numbers from various studies. i think it's hard to know exactly how many jobs are going to -- what -- how are these things going to play out. that's a good judgment on the kind of jobs that could be created by making the shift
forward a greener economy. are you talking about all parts of the world? >> no, those are u.s. jobs. >> not the developing words? >> right. yes? go ahead. >> hi, this is christian post. the question is for robert. you had mentioned the last recovery. i hope that you could be a little more specific on what the time frame you met for the last recovery. >> the last recovery began at the end of the 2001 and ran through the end of 2007. >> steve with voice of america, for reverend yearwood, why do you think that the green jobs
provide an opportunity to say if they don't go to -- basically, why do you see these as a good opportunity for you in particular? >> well, i think the first thing is the fact that you're changing the actual economy. you are going from a fossil fuel economy to a clean-energy economy. for americans we're moving from being the consumer to the producer. and because we are producing more jobs, and obviously would be more jobs for every one. i don't think that everybody in the -- from the bronx or oakland, all of them get the jobs. that's not what we want. the great thing is for america. that we are moving from being our economy that is based on being a consumer to actually producing. these things must be produced here.
when you are retrofitting a home or weatherized, those are things that the training. but also this is back to the original question that was asked earlier, piggy backing. one of the things is that walls are changing, because the fossil fuel economy to the clean energy. you are also changing the mindset of how to be an accountant. not just how much you spend, but also how much you save. and so for color in particular, this is very important because of energy efficiency. and so it's not just how much you are spending. sometimes everybody might get a green collar job and different types not just construction or retro fitting, there's going to be urban planners or employers. but the changing of the economy. one the underlying cost is crisis. we couldn't afford to pay for
their homes. but we also couldn't afford to pay the energy bills. one the things there for the commission of color are four people. they begin to have a more efficient community. and then they will save on the energy bills. but that will also help them in different ways as well. yes? >> i'm a freelance on the radio. i'm just curious in terms of the overseas and developing countries information on terms of poverty. we do have this economic crisis. countries are interested in helping their own populations and stuff. and rather than spending the money overseas. but if -- i understand this was rolled through the meeting in rome last week. no one agreed to any targets, or i believe there are no major new commitments. what appeals are you going to be making to try to get more money to go to feed people. and how dire is the situation in
particular countries. are we talking about seeing these videos where we see people who have children with the bloated bellies and things like that, because they have no access to food. >> thanks for the question. the leader so far, the g20, for example, we're very clear that they wanted to hold harmless countries as part of the recovery plan. the commitments on aid. but we are do see some backsliding from coming out of the 2005 glen eagles g8 summit. countries are not where they are supposed to be in terms of meeting their commitment on aid. on one the hand is rhetoric is good, but the commitments have not been meeting the promises
made. we are seeing some countries begin to move backward. we haven't seen that yet in this country. but it's something to watch for. it's up to us to hold our leaders accountable. i would say that president obama is being pretty outspoke terms of focusing on food security and agriculture and trying to drag the rest of the community along with him, getting commitments out of them from the g8 meeting in july for $20 billion for agriculture. which is in the scheme of things not that much money. but it's important to do some fund raising and advertisement. i'm hoping we have the right rhetoric. but the accountability is, think, the next stage we will be able to hold leaders accountable. so i think that's the answer. in terms of how bad are things going to get, i don't think we know. obviously we are very worried about it.
obviously the best projections are that many more people are hungry now than food and security and poverty, and the collapse in global demand is now flowing through as a economic factor for developing countries, exports are down, tens of millions of people are out of work. we are likely to see the wave come later in most developing countries than we see in the developed world. but be potentially worse in developing countries. so something to watch for carefully. i think we'll need to see the emergency plans to deal with these problems as they emerge. >> if i can just add on that that it's -- this is another instance in which doing the right thing is the good thing.
gay gawain -- gawain talked about that. there are some countries where you see huge surges in poverty and instinct that will end us costing us in lots of other ways. so the amount of money that's to help the developing countries forward is relatively small compared to say the u.s. budget. but spending that money makes a lot of sense. bread for the world is campaigning in support of what the president and the state are trying to do to mobilize the global effort to strengthen agricultural and reduce hunger in poor countries. we'll also -- bread for the world is really working to make our foreign aid program more effective. we think in the time like this, in the middle of the economic crisis, we should use those
foreign aid dollars more effectively than we do. and get more of the money to the people who need help. so we see that work on making foreign aid just more bang for the buck for poor people. we see that as an integral part of the larger division of the economic recover we, that's sustainable and just. >> are there other press questions? yes, go ahead. yeah? no. go ahead. >> increasing the interest in the issue of climate change, last week evangelical leaders met. do you have any plans on engaging churches somehow on advocating for the a green economy? >> reverend? >> well, on august of this year, we actually launched our green to block complain with our
partner organization, green for all. and part of that is to engage the faith community as well as next year we'll be going around the country to really bridge the gap. the faith community will be a critical place to where we will come together again to discuss this. i think that's very -- we've seen some great signs of the faith community, and the science community really coming together now, working on this issue. i'm very excited to see. there's been some hostility, and some friction. but i think the crisis is a number of different communities together. particularly the favorite and science community. >> and bread for the world is supported by another 50 different church bodies. we have 4,000 local congregations that participate in bread for the world. this report is one way that we
are helping our network, mostly christian people across the country, think about the economy. and we're going to do that, and people in churches can help on sunday mornings. that's one way we can help. any other press question? questions for comments from other people? welcome. yes, go ahead. >> dr. robinson -- >> can you identify yourself? >> yes, dr. robinson in the faith based works. we have so many people who are among the so-called working core who are in need of help. and even though they are working, and i was just wondering whether or not in this green jobs, et cetera, the issue of living wages, and others thing that are significant. i wanted to to speak a little
bit more to that win the faith community getting involved in that. >> do you want to speak to that? >> well, first there's an opportunity, as you know, from the recovery, and hud, and from the energy grants that are coming out. so i begin to go into particularly urban communities. there's a great trend in that. the justice about what people get in the jobs. and we will be galing with that. one the things that we need to deal with in terms of color as you well know has been even with labor and while labor has been good, sometimes apprenticeship and journeymen have not always
going to color for these jobs. we need to rebuild that structure, as well as living wages, and fair wages. this will come through to training. the process of giving green jobs to the need is again to connect the work that needs to be done. people who most need this within the poor communities. black and white, brown and yellow will be trained. i think that'll be the first step before moving to the living wage which will be the next step to ensure that when they get these jobs that they are not just jobs. we don't want green jobs. we want to have careers. >> there are four elements here, repeating to some degree what the reverend just said. the first question is as green jobs grow in numbers, who gets those jobs? and that makes particularly
important who have in place quickly and ramping up over time. effective job training programs so that people with lower income communities, minority backgrounds, people who don't necessary have college educations that aren't really needed for a number of these jobs. but do get the appropriate training and background. so that they can compete for these jobs. they have a history of mixed track records on the effectiveness of job training programs. some have been effective, but others have not. i think it's very important for us to be moving quickly, to have evaluations in place to find the most effective types of job training programs for particularly for the green jobs that are going to be grows in numbers. the second issue are the wage levels. minimum wage obviously is in
important here. and there are some for living wage as well. one should recognize the limitations. one can't simply ask that wage levels be mandated up to the level that we like to see all families get in their paycheck. but already limits to how high you can go without limiting the number of jobs. there's a tradeoff a. and this is why for the last several decades, we have supplemented the minimum wage with what i talked about earlier, and as david talked about, with refundable tax credits for low-income working families. really the take home pay them becomes the sum of the wage itself as the main component. but supplemented by the tax credit, the earned income credit, the child tax credit for low-income working families. and one wants to make sure the combination gets families to an
adequate level. the third issue is health care. we need to be sure that the jobs either come with health care or that health care otherwise is affordable for everybody who has those jobs. as far as i'm concerned, the health reform legislation moving is an essential element of this larger picture. and so when you put together well designed effective training programs for minimum wage standards with tax credits for lower income working families, and health care that either through the employer or through another mechanism is affordable for everybody. then those pieces combined, i think get us where we want to go. >> the people we invited are policy leaders an partners. let's so here from some other folks, questions or comments? i'm planning to close up at 10:30. yes.
identify yourself. >>my -- michelle learner. following up about the communities of color, what do people think about the gender question? we have i think one single mother and three surgeons here, and that's a figure i just saw. a lot of green color, blue color jobs have gone to men. i wondered if you thought some things specific would be done to address that problem for women, particularly women raising children. >> i'll give that one to you. >> there are some outstanding programs, even in the report. the south bronx program, the good friend mr. carter did. and there are a number of programs that are being led. and you're right. this is -- we are dealing with the issue of poverty and pollution. and we are not addressing the issue of working families and
particularly working mothers as we are beginning to build this new clean energy jobs sector. we would have missed the mark then. so i think that one of the key things that around the country that i have been seeing has been the amazing amount of women, and young women at that, who are getting engaged and finding out more about the new clean energy economy. also on the leadership side, my good friend who runed it out in auckland, a number of phenomenal women leaders who are also leading to the kind of jobs, but it's also good to have women leaders in the movement as well. so i think that what we are now beginning to see in color. you will begin to see young
people and old people begin to get excited about the new green jobs. particularly, the advantage. i think the bill that's in congress now in using the community college system as a way to build that, it will allow more people to not have to go through the four-year program. but also to go through the community college program and get some of the training that is needed. a lot of these jobs that are coming up through the programs will be available for all people. so it won't be just construction jobs. >> i want to just add if we are talking about jobs, and women in particulars jobs and low-income single mothers, for example, green jobs are important. there will be a growing share in the jobs of the u.s. economy. there are. q. -- jobs that will grow in other sectors as well. that the increase in the number
of jobs in the health care sector will probably be larger if we move forward universal health coverage. it's very coronet to move through them, but the larger picture is we want the country and the citizens to be well positioned to capture as many new economic opportunities and effectively fill as many of the jobs as possible. for example, in terms of the larger theme, poverty, hunger, and the like that's reflected in the bread for world report, another important scenario coming up in 2010 or maybe it will be 2011 will be the reauthorization of the temporary assistance for needy families program, a welfare reform program. which has had some successes, but also some failures. it's been pretty much unsuccessful in moving those single mothers with the greatest
barriers to employment, educational, physical problems, maybe some mental problems, to help them overcome those barriers, move into the job market, and start to move up the job ladder. we need to reform and reengineer that program. it's much more effective in helping move those mothers into the work force. for some of those mothers, if we overcome those barriers they maybe able to take some green jobs. :
>> about 50 percent of our congregations are in rural counties and small towns around the country, and i'm wondering in outlining this particular report, using this focus, i'm wondering if you or maybe mr. greenstein would say a little more about the potential for the recovery, and especially its impact on those who live in small towns, rural counties, those who are trapped in a kind of really poverty in those
areas. >> thank you. as you know, bread for the world has done a series of reports on agricultural policy, rural development, and has a ton of lead lot of legislation work on those issues. the rate of poverty and hunger, are higher in rule america than in urban america. and the policies that we have no that are called foreign policies are not the best way to address to help people in rural america that really need help. so i think that is an unfinished agenda. in this economy we really cannot afford protectionist subsidies for rich landholders. we have got to go back to the farm bill and to deal with those subsidies that hurt poor farmers in developing countries, don't really help anybody but a really
small group of large landholde landholders. and also drain financial resources. we do need to be fiscally responsible, and that is a glaring case where we are spending some money that is not moving our whole economy in the right direction. so what policy can do, it seems to me, to strengthen rural communities, struggling people in rule communities, would include reform of our farm and agricultural policies to focus on the people who need help. and to shift some money from people for getting money because they have political power to the people in rural america who really need help. and in that way, to strengthen small-scale farms, small farms that farce do need support, income support, provide help for those farmers but then there are a lot of people in rural america who are not farmers.
so through rural development programs, you can address, help those people get a little knowledge, they can start a business, fun to the fire department so that if their house burned, they have a fire truck. what we're doing in the area, in the recovery package for broadband access in rural america is really important for the health of those families so that they can find out information about health issues from the web. but also for economic development if they are disconnected from the web, it is really hard to get a thriving economy. so i appreciate that you raised the issue of rural america. i think one more question. >> judy with freelance consultants. this question is for both david and bob. two issues i haven't heard mentioned, which i am curious about.
one is about the employment of fact of employer -- employment effect of employer provided health insurance. if we had a reasonable national health insurance program, would that create more jobs if the employers then didn't have that expense on their jobs? and is that part of your agenda here? and second, i haven't heard anything about raising taxes. all of these programs require money. i realize the right wing does not want to raise taxes, but it seems to me we have to raise taxes and a more progressive income tax would help. i'm wondering if that is on your agenda. >> these are hard questions so i'll ask bob greenspan to answer. [laughter] >> i think in terms of health care, people today who are uninsured, on average get sound but inadequate health care. they may go to the emergency
room. if we are closer to universal coverage, if more people are getting better care and so forth, the total amount of, this ought to create over time some increases number of jobs in the health care sector. now, the health care bill is an emblem here. i actually think it is pretty remarkable that we have two bills on the capitol hill that each would extend insurance over 30 million people who otherwise would lack it. and yet, both bills, the congressional budget office tells us, would actually reduce deficits at the same time. now those bills make some important reforms, particularly in the medicare program with regard to payment to certain kinds of providers and other reforms. and they raise some revenue. the senate, in part, from putting a limit on the tax
subsidy for the highest and most expensive insurance plans. as we move forward, and we look at the kinds of things we need to do, we would, none of these things are free lunches. every one of these over time is going to have to be paid for. that is going to entail a combination of reforms on the spending side of the budget, but several on the table with regard to price supports. were going to need to do more in the health care area, and as you said, we definitely are going to need to increase more revenue. we have to do all of these things. this is part of the tough challenges that lie ahead. precisely the fact that none of these things are easy or free, that if we get down the road and we don't make the right choices, in the long run we will all lose.
by having a less productive economy that has fewer jobs for everybody. but tax reform and more revenues, and health care reform, those are essential ingredients in my view to most other reforms in most other areas over the long-term. >> thank you very much to the members of the press who are covering this story. thanks to our excellent speakers, really interesting. i want to thank again todd post and my other colleagues at bread for the world, bread for the world institute who helped put this report together. you can find the whole report, the executive summary is now out, and i think as people in the room have copies of that, you can get more copies of that by getting in touch with bread for the world at bread.org. and in the whole report is online at bread.org hunger report.
>> an interview now with maryland congressman chris van hollen, chair of the democratic congressional campaign committee. he talks about health care legislation, the afghanistan war and the 2010 collections. he spoke at a conference hosted by bloomberg news. he is interviewed by time magazine editor at large marv albert for about half an hour. >> congressman, thank you for coming. i'm a local guy to. i grew up in the congressional district. before you represented it of course. people should know, besides you are a serious member of policy decisions within the caucus and also someone who had the guts to succeed rahm emanuel. it's nice to do a panel because
he doesn't understand there is a 72nd delay in live events. you do so we can have a nice clean conversation. certain were taken used as a noun. a lot we can talk about because you have a big role in the entire caucus agenda, i want to focus on the tube that had been the major agenda items for the president, health care and afghanistan. let's start with health care. have you and your career ever cast a vote that you are pretty confident would hurt her chances of being reelected? >> that's a good question. i have cast votes on a number of issues where i probably had no idea exactly what the consequences would be, but i can't say i voted for something where i knew for sure would cause me a whole lot of trouble. i have the benefit of representing a congressional district that i think gives me
the freedom to vote the way that i think best. i guess the i.t. in close touch with my constituents. but for the most part i think i am fortunate in the great majority of issues, my views are shared by those in my constituents. >> a lot of liberals, and so you haven't faced that. is it fair to say that in order to pass health care you're going to have to ask a lot of your colleagues who are in tougher districts to cast a vote where there is not just an unknowable, but a pretty decent chance it could hurt their chances of being reelected? >> well, what we ask all our members to do is listen very carefully to their constituents and do their best to represent those views. we ask them to vote their community, their conscious and their country. and for the most part, i think that is what most of our members will do. if you look at the vote we just had, despite the fact we have a large majority, we had a vote of 220 members in favor of health
care reform. that means that there were clearly a lot of members, the democratic caucus, who took the position that this was a bill that they were hearing a lot about from their constituents, and were not prepared for a variety of reasons to support it, at least at this point in time. having said that, i do believe passing health care reform is not only the right thing to do from a policy perspective. i think they'll you're for to pass a health care reform would damage damage the democrats prospects in the next election because it would show up there to be able to deliver. the question of whether or not these guys can get their act together or not to pass a major piece of health care reform. so to that extent, the political fortunes of the entire caucus are tied together i believe in some sense in getting this thing passed, even though for individual members of vote yes or no would have very different consequences. >> you do have that margin and
you've read a certain number of people. i think you could have pulled back if you needed them if the margin, if you lost certain other members. but clearly the next though for some of these members, perhaps on the left, perhaps on the right, it's going to be tougher if there is a vote on final passage. do you expect that you and the white house and the speaker and the leader and others are going to have to say to members, convince them, if you vote this way, you may lose but we will help you, or are you going to have to convince them what you just said which is in fact you think you're better off, even if there are people making noise in your district, you are better off voting for this bill, how hard would that be? >> whether they vote for it or against it, if they have tough elections, we will do our best to help them because while some member may not be entirely with us on a particular issue, more likely than not they will be with us on another issue. certainly they will be more supportive when you look at a whole variety of votes than the
person who is challenging them in these races would be. i'm not sure i'd agree that the next vote is going to be harder. i think there's a general sense that the senate bill, if the senate bill can get through, that whatever emerges from conference will be something that most of the members in the house who support it, the house bill, will be able to support the next round. but getting back to what i said. we do believe passing this is very important. most important in delivering on what we believe a promise and commitment that was made in the lastcampaign picked as is very actively discussed, the health care reform issue. so we have to get past, and if we try to leave it to individual members to decide what is best for the district. >> the substance of the bill matters but so does the politics and the ability to control the discussion. the leaderships effort into finding to the public these things, do you think you're been
a good enough job or whether you have lost so far. defined was passed in the house and in the senate, as something that will in fact control health care. do you think you're very good job explaining that? >> i think we have work to do in that area. i think people understand that this will help expand access to health care. i think we need to do a better job of demonstrating how this will reduce costs, both in terms of individual premiums that people will pay. and we think the mechanisms we set up within the exchange with the public option will create greater competition, helped drive down costs. but also at the federal level where medicare and medicaid obviously are large expenses within the federal government. we did a lot of work on a couple of provisions that got very little attention to try to change the incentive structure within the medicare payment system toward greater focus on outcome and quality, rather than volume-based paint system. there are a number of provisions in the bill to change the
incentives, bundling of payments, accountable care organizations, asking the institute of medicine to actually revise the payment system. so we think there are important measures in there too began to drive down costs of the federal budget, as well as in the premium market. we have not done a good enough job getting the word out on those issues. >> what on the issue on whether people would be able to keep their current insurance, keep their current health care, keep the relationship with her doctor, do you think of any good enough job on that? >> i do. this is something the president emphasized on the very beginning because he wanted to make it clear that we're not talking about a radical restructuring in the sense that people who like the coverage they had would be in a position of losing its. so he has tried to emphasize that point from day one. the congressional budget office analyzed the whole house bill, and determined that in the year 2019 when this bill is fully kicked in, we'll have more people than today on employer
based health insurance, employers are not going to somehow get rid of health insurance. we have to remind people that employers have no requirement today to provide health care. they do as part of a compensation package. there is no reason to believe people will all of a sudden throw their employees off their current health insurance that they have. >> if you get as anything into what you wanted without having to go through a legislative process, would you prefer a single-payer system? >> if i were starting from scratch, just from the very beginning, i would certainly consider some form of that kind of system, with the following caveat. one of the things that is defining for a system in a very positive and is the innovation, the incentives for innovation in terms of developing new pharmaceuticals, new techniques, new treatments, tears, whatever
system if we were starting from scratch you would want to make sure that there was enough and sent in the system, a lot and senate in the system to make sure that the innovation that i think has been so successful would be part of it. i think the weakness in our system is some of the great benefits of that innovation are not widely available. we have 35, 40 million people with no insurance. so it is a hypothetical question. we sort of inherited system that we got. i think the president made the right decision not to try and throw this out and start from scratch. we are trying to fill major holes. i think most people would agree if you were to design a health care system from scratch as opposed to, it wouldn't look exactly like it does today. >> you have more of a margin of error in the house ben senator reid does in the senator get something going there and to get to conference. the leaders do we don't know exactly what's going to be in it
but we do know what was in the senate finance bill. what provisions that the senate passed out that you find objectionable that you would like to say not emerge from the conference report? >> well, that is a good question. we have a different approach than the senate. the senate main source of financing is by essentially imposing a tax. >> is that unacceptable to? >> i'm not saying it is unacceptable. from our perspective i think you would be a big mistake to draw any absolute lines in the sand. >> that's where is trying to get you to do. >> we got to look at the final package and you have to make a judgment based on. >> so you'll like the taxing of the cadillac plans like the one i have. i don't like it either. what else don't you like in the finance bill? >> just on that point to be clear. the problem on that is the inequity it could impose to people who have the same health benefits but very different costs based on risk.
you and i could essentially have the same plan, but i could be any poll that was much riskier. i would be paying more for the same benefits that you are and yet i would be taxed on that even though we have the same benefits. there are a lot of problems just in terms of equity there. i believe that the public option that we've got is very important. i believe that it will help create competition. as we know there are many market in the united states were you may have one or two major carriers. there's not a lot of competition and a lot of these markers. i think having a public option that has to play by the rules as we set out in the bill, meaning they have to support itself on the premiums it takes in, any advance from the federal treasury have to be repaid. it is fairly tightly drawn. i believe that competition will be helpful. and again, i'm not going to draw any lines in the sand that someone will have to come up with another mechanism that creates that kind of choice and competition. i haven't heard any idea on the senate that does it as well as i
think that this. >> i want to lead healthier and go to afghanistan, but since there are a lot of people in this room who are better i predict, i suspect, what you think the odds are that you will get passage on a health care bill by, say, state of union? >> i'm an optimist. so i would say we're going to get 100%. >> i'm sure we may well come back to health care during the q&a, but let me go to afghanistan that has the white house sought your opinion as to what the president should do? >> with respect to afghanistan? the white house has been down general jones, then down to meet with the democratic and republican caucus, briefed members. ifr that they have solicited comments. we are not involved on a day-to-day basis, but you can be sure that they are taking the temperature of different members of congress, and certainly the chairman of the armed services committee in both the house and the senate have made their views
known. and i'm sure the white house is taking into account a full range of opinion, but focus on these al qaeda made a decision as to what's best for national security. >> and to measure how difficult the problem is. i've never seen an issue where so many television pundits and members of congress say they don't know enough to have an opinion. and those are two groups of people who normally can have an opinion about pre-match anything without regard to how much they know. do you have a pretty good idea of what you think you should do? >> that was a great setup of a question, no doubt. let me say this. i agreed with the president's view of afghanistan that this was more of necessity, not choice. we know that the attacks of september 11, 2001, were brought on by a dysfunctional government in afghanistan that brought al qaeda in. so whatever we do with respect to our strategy, we've got to make sure we include al qaeda. it involves both afghanistan and pakistan. i think we have made progress on
the pakistani side, the pakistanis i think back in junior would have said that the fight against the pakistan taliban was really a u.s. fight, not much a pakistanis i. i think the assassination, the attacks within pakistan have led them to change their mind on that, and that is why i think with our support, they have taken action in swat valley and south waziristan. we passed a major piece of legislation providing assistance to pakistan. in afghanistan, there's a number of different options to consider. i think would be a mistake for the united states to withdraw. there are some people who are advocating the beginning of an immediate withdrawal of afghanistan. i think that would be a big, big mistake. in fact, several years ago i thought of increasing u.s. forces in afghanistan, and as you know the president has increased forces by about 21000 since he was sworn in. now, whether or not you increase forces above the current level,
is not just a question of troop levels, but you obviously have to clearly analyze the political situation on the ground. you have to take into account the liability of the karzai government. you have to take -- >> let me stop you there. you do you have a position on that? there are people have real doubts about that, vice president seemed to have real doubts about that. do you have a view on that? >> i do have doubts about that by building of the karzai government. after all, you had essentially a inconclusive election. nobody knows exactly the winner is. you do have a government that's been rife with corruption. >> do you suspect he may be involved in corruption? >> i have no reason to believe that. but clearly if the u.s. forces are going to be in afghanistan as part of a counterinsurgency strategy where you're trying to convince people of afghanistan to repel the taliban and support the government in kabul, you
have to have some faith in confidence of the government of kabul. and it is very difficult to see whether that is there now. in fact, most of the evidence suggests otherwise. i think this is an area where you have got to make a determination about whether what's going on in afghanistan is a leading civil war between the taliban and forces of the northern alliance, and a number of other factors, or whether you believe putting more forces on the ground as part of a counterinsurgency strategy can increase security to the point where you will be able to gain the confidence of the people. but we have not yet, we in congress, we have not yet benefited general mcchrystal's testimony. we have not heard from eikenberry before congress. so i think we need to have the kind of debate in congress that they've had in the white house before making what is clearly a very consequential decision. >> let's go to your questions in just a bit.
start think about what you would like to ask the congressman. you are more hawkish than at least some members of the caucus. some seem very agitated, not just in congress but liberals and internet bloggers about the prospect of president would put more troops into afghanistan. you talk to people who feel that way a lot, including your members. what has them so agitated about the notion of putting more troops? is that their military judgment that the war isn't winnable? they don't like spending money, what is the drive that strong sentiment on the left of the president should withdraw troops and not putting more troops be? well, it is hard to speak for everybody who takes that position because there are lots of different reasons, given for that. i think the reason, you know, i think makes sense that people want to make sure that this is going to work, that there's going to be an end to this, a successful conclusion to this. and the burden is certainly on
those who seek to increase u.s. forces there. that it will help improve the situation. you know, one of the things secretary gates said early on before committee of congress is he thought was important to put in afghan face on this war. in other words, to provide turnover in transition more responsibility to the afghans. and certainly that will be part of the strategy, but having more u.s. forces in some of the major population areas doesn't necessarily translate into putting afghan face on this war. so i think, people have a legitimate question including myself, whether this troop increase will in fact accomplish the desired result. . .
>> there are other republican voices in the house that have expressed support for the president where he to make that decision. so i would take them at their word, and say that are going to support him, unless we get further notice. >> okay. we're going to go to question. i have one more. the audience was wanting to hear what you had to say about bernie
madoff. >> no, i'm glad he's getting the punishment he deserved. i think there's still a lot of investigation to be done. i think there are others who benefited from what madoff did. i hope we take some lessons away from strengthen the fcc to make sure we detect these schemes early on. >> let's go on to the next question. that gentleman there. >> you and your colleagues were able to add something to the waxman-markey bill. that allow us us to have -- as passed they did have support. do you have any thoughts in terms of generally speaking whether the prospects in the
senate are equal as positive. how do we encourage the capitol and investments in energy and efficiency and solar. >> i thought that was a very important provision we had in the house bill as an important to define more financing provisions both for renewal energy and energy efficiency. i hope we'll be able to preserve the provisions in the senate. there's another provision that relates to increased funds for different kinds of financing. it's one that i worked on a lot. i offered an amendment to establish what we call a green bank. the technical word is a green energy employment authority. it would allow the creation of a financing authority by selling bonds, capitollize to the bank, and then who provide for loan guarantees and low-interest rate loans which helps the clean energy and energy efficiency, but it also helps on the
consumers end. as you know, the package contains a number of provisions, for example, the energy or electricity portfolio that creates a demand. obviously, the cap and trade that cuts a price on the dirtiest kind of fuels, the most carbon intensive. and the green bank helps that transition from a consumer perfective. so that's a big provision of the bill along with the one you mentioned. we're going to fight hard in the senate. >> thank you. >> over here. >> foreign policy council. it's becoming increasingly unlikely that an negotiated settlement with with iran is possible. we're hearing concerns not only from israel but from many of the sunni-arab states. if the situation reaches the point where israel decides to strike iran, what should be
should the u.s. position be? >> that's an easy one. i'm going to -- i think that while we have not exhausted all of the options, i think that there are still an opportunity to persuade potentially the iranians to the course of action. they are on sort and military force. although i agree with the president that that will always remain an option in the arsenal here. but i'm not yet convinced that it's beyond hope to try and deter the iranians from their current course. i certainly think the president was right to the course that he articulated in the campaign to at least sit down face to face with the iranians. for no other reason that if it means you're showing to your
allies, that you're exhausted all other efforts and diplomatic opportunities before you take course, for example, economic sanctions or any other steps that you may take. at the end of the day, i think it's going to be important for the united states to have a coalition together on this issue. i think that the president is approaching -- approach to maximize the fund on the strategy on iraq. >> what is the president's public approval rating in israel is so low? >> i think that it probably has somewhat to do with the expectations that were set. clearly the president's statements with respect to the settlements created some concern in israel. even though i think as most
people know the president was articulating what has been u.s. policy for many years. it's just not part of the policy that had been emphasis the. and i think what the president was trying to do both in his psi psi psi psi -- cairo speech to try to move the ball forward. he made it clear that he wasn't going to wait to try to take on some of the challenges. previous administration, as you know sort of had the conference and the fan of the last year, the president was in office. the president appointed george mitchell special envoy, and made it clear that he's going to really take on this challenge. obviously, a very difficult situation now. it doesn't seem to be a good negotiating partner on the palestinian side. i think the president said expressly what had been u.s.
policy. and obviously the response he got among part of the israeli public was some degree of people who were upset. i think at the end of the day, we'll just have to see if we can move the process forward. >> okay. back over here. >> hi. back to the bernie madoff, just curious what congress is thinking. the reaction to enron and all of the world and the rest which of course didn't really do anything good at throwing people in jail. what throws people in jail are policeman. the concern is with bernie, we're going to get a whole nothing raft of regulations, but still no policeman to throw the bad guys in jail. any initiative to try to put more policeman on the beat? >> i think there is an effort to
strengthen the fcc and beef up it's investigatory powers and capabilities in terms of providing more resources. one the bills the congress has passed and since the president was the creation of a commission. that it is underway to begin to look at all of the things that may have gone wrong. i'm not talking about just within the financial system generally. but in terms of fraud within the system, similar kinds of schemes. and hopefully that investigation will come up with some recommendation to take further action. but i wanted to distinguish between the very important effort to try and beef up the investigatory and enforcement capability with respect to madoff lessons. but there was an awful lot that went wrong that was perfectly legal with respect to what happened a year ago in september with the financial meltdown that requires other kinds of actions. so a lot of what's going on on
the hill now in terms of what's happening in the financial services committee under the chairman, and what's happening in the senate is not response to madoff, it's in the response to things like aig and the fact that we've created a system that where you have certain institutions that at least the head of the fed and former secretary treasury was literally too big to fail. they weren't hurting only themselves. i think people are fine saying, looking with you made bad decisions. too bad. you are on your own. but when the failures have a devastating impact on the rest of the economy, that's when the federal government had to step in. yes, we want to pass legislation that helps avoid some of those problems going forward. more transparency, more accountability. some changes with respect to the derivative's market which has been offline when it comes to oversight and regulation.
so the madoff thing exposed someone that was ideally responsible. there are a lot of things that weren't criminal, but we want to avoid them in the future. that's what the legislation is designed to do. >> we'll wrap up. what is the fewest number of house seats you can lose? >> that one i'm going to pass on. only expect to say, mark, as you know, historically where the very top cycle for democrats. the president's expectations for the israelis. and i set these expectations for our caucus back in january. >> we're lucky to keep the majority. >> what? >> oh, no. let me just dismiss. let me deal with it. this is not 1994. i think people who think this is 1994 are totally misreading the current situation. are we in what is going to be a competitive tough cycle? absolutely. and the history tells us that.
midterm elections tells you that. are we looking at 1994? no. and i think that if you look at the standarding of our republican colleague and the public mind, you know, and you know this, mark, that the latest poll shows that about 20st of the american people self-identify them as republican. that's a 8 point drop since the election when the republicans both beat in the presidential and congressional races. i'm not saying that the democrats should be overconfident. not at all. this is going to be tough. but to suggest that the republicans are going to run to the rescue to the american people, and they think they are the anxious. -- answer. i think that is a very wrong too. that's why i don't see a 1994 shaping up.
>> mr. chairman, as you liked to be congressman, thank you for coming and talking to us today. >> good to be with you. >> the indian prime minister is in the nation's capitol getting ready for the steak dinner. he will be speaking to the u.s. chamber of commerce later today on c-span 12 p.m. live. a new discussion on mammograms, nancy brinker will comment later today. she's at the national press club. we will have that live here on c-span 2 at noon eastern time. >> tonight, net neutrality, improving broadband service in the u.s. julius genachowski maps out the goals for the agency on the
communicators. >> former iowa congressman jim leach, now chairman spoke friday about multiculturalism. from the national press club, this is an hour. >> i thank you very much. i appreciate it. and i've been waiting all day for the opportunity, come on up, to ask a few questions of myself to ask the guest. thank you very much for being here. it's a bloomberg-washington summit. a little history for you, he worked in the u.s. attorneys office from new york, handled some very high-profile terrorist case there is. went to work on wall street, as a general council came back in february to run the enforcement division of the fcc. a very important time in the fcc's history, and of course in the course of the financial crisis. first of all, welcome. thank you for being here. >> thank you for having me. >> there are a whole range of
issues that i want to talk about. i want to start about first some the folks may have seen you recently out in front pretty high-profile investigation. >> the return of insider trading, some folks thought it went away. >> as you can tell, this is not the national press club with former representative jim leach. we are going to show that to you momentarily. he's currently chairman of the national endowment for the humanityies.
[gavel] >> good afternoon. welcome to the national press club. i'm president of the national press club. we are the word's leading professional organization for journalist. and we're committed to the future of journalism, by providing informative programming and journalism education, and fostering a free press worldwide. for more information about the national press club, please visit our web site at www.press.org. on behalf of our 3,500 members worldwide, i'd like to welcome our speaker. i'd also like to welcome those of you watching us on c-span. we are looking forward to today's speech. afterwards, i will ask as many questions as possible. please hold your applause during the speak to have time for questions after. if you hear applause, it maybe from the guest and members of
the public, and not necessarily from the working press. i'd now like to introduce our head table, and ask them to stand briefly when the names are called. from your right, jonathan of bloomberg, and past president of the national press club. mary stuart, vice president for the external affairs for wepa television and radio. matt small, eva, senior advisor to the chairman of the neh. linda st. thomas, director for the smithsonian institution. skipping over the podium, melissa vice president of the speakers committee, skipping over our guest, andrew stone, senior correspondent and the speakers committee member who organizized these events. thank you very much, andrea.
jeremy bernard, white house liaison and director of affairs. and finally bob washington correspondent. [applause] our guest today says he's convinced that the arts and humanities are vastly more important in troubled times. as head of the federal government's independent grant making agency supporting research, preservation, and public programs in the humanities, the national endowment for the humanities chairman, jim leach, has made it his top goal to bridge cultural divides. our era is one where defining stability increasely mall marks politics and anarchy has taken part in the most of the world.
mr. leach spent 30 years on capitol hill. as a republican congressman, representing southeast iowa, he was known as a moderate who often bucked his party on issue issues from embryonic stem cell research to the iraq war which he voted against. he is perhaps best known for the graham-leach act which ranks just behind the federal reserve act of 1914 in importance. he lost re-elect after the social conservatives refused to to back him over the gay marriage, and internet gambling. in 2008, mr. leach broke with republicans to support obama for president, speaking as a democrat national convention in denver. this summer, president obama nominated mr. leach as the 9th
chairman of the national endowment for the humanities. he was sworn in this august, after the princeton university woodrow wilson school and the school of government. chairman leach comes to with the undergraduate from princeton, a masters from john hopkins, and eight honorary degrees. but perhaps most useful in the rough and tumble, he has membership in the national hall of fame in stillwater, oklahoma. please join me in welcoming neh chairman, jim leach. [applause] >> thank you very much. my esteemed colleague, thank you for coming. and my wife. as chairman of the national endowment for humanities, i
speak today to underscore the importance of humanities when the democracy is in question. the united states is currently engaged in military conflict in two countries more than 1/3 of the way around the world, each with a unique set of problems. our engagement is a result of the terrorist attack on our shores, plotted by terrorist for readouts. our engagement in the middle east is undertaken against a country that was not involved in the plot against america, but was thought to be on the verge of developing weapons of mass destruction. in making assumptions about the wisdom and manner of other countries, would it be helpful for policymakers to review the history of the french colonial experience, the british and russian experience in afghanistan, the u.s. experience in vietnam, before rather than after a decision to go to war?
would it be useful to study the differences between and within the world's great religions? and would anies a aspects of our history be relevant to decision making. the tactics of francis marian, who trained the best army at night, and vanished into the swamps during the day. the neh advance scholarship in these and other areas. how do you do it in public policy? this is a challenging, because it involves multiple parties, serious score -- scholars, and others. a monk in the cave maybe admirable. but wisdom that isn't shared is voiceless thought. likewise, thoughtful scholarship that is available but not
pondered is prescription for social error with many costly dimensions. this is neither time for scholarly key sitting, nor vast citizenship, than ignoring or shortchanging the humanities. in the issue today is localist instincts on the other. divisions are magnified at home as well as abroad. it is particularly difficult not to be concerned about american public manners win the rhetoric of our politics. words reflect emotion as well as meaning. they clarify or cloud thought. and energize action. sometimes bringing out the better angels in our nature. sometimes lesser instincts. recent comments from the house floor have gathered much
attention. but the assertions are being made across the land, and few are thinking through the meaning or consequences of the words being used. public officials are being labeled fascist or communist. and can public figures that have toyed with history-blind radicallist. the notion of solution. one might ask what problem is there with a bit of hyperbole. the logic to phrase is the message. if we lost 400,000 soldiers, spent a fortune and lost thousands to hold communism at bay, and fought a civil war to preserve the union, isn't a citizen obligation to the true on the humanities to lend perspective to words that contain worrying implications? there is after all a difference between holding a different view, and asserting that
american supports another approach or is a member of the different political party is advocate of hate that em compasses gulags and concentration camps. one thought defines idea, the other enemies. the poet walt whitman once described administration as to etic policy. it was rugged, vigorous, and spirited. of course toleration of human degradation, slavery, and indentureed servitude held thought in many of our structures. indeed, violence was part of 19th search repolitical manners. the vice president shot dead, the greatest secretary of treasury for suggesting he was dispickable in a dual in which the dueling pistols causing him
to fire skyward. moments later, mr. bird indicated the assessment of his character, by gunning down his adversary, who may have been duked. so uncivil behavior is nothing new. what is new are transformative changes in communicate technology. in american politics and issues facing mankind. the impact of new social media constituted a subject much covered by others. i'd like to comment on the changes in american politics in relation to the challenges in the world. in teaches at harvard and princeton, i developed several improvements. political science begins with the observation that with swings the country over the past generation has been 1, 3, democrat, 1/3 republican, and
1/3 independent. grade school math shows us that half of 1/3 is 1/6. but because only one in four, often a fraction of this figure participate in primaries where legislative candidates are chosen, it's 1/4 time 1/6 that 1/24 is the maximum percentage of the electorate and hence the legislative bodies have tended to represent the vast cross section of the american public increasingly reflect principally the philosophical edges. american is a pragmatic oriented society. for virtually all of our history, they have had the aversion to extreme.
yet compounded by the recent patterns, the turning center is vastly unrepresented in congress today. and in state legislative bodies as well. it hardly had a stand in the legislative table. political science 102. to the degree parties are controlled or defined by their party apparatus in the party organization, it is impressive to the number of participate is a minimum part of 1%. participants are to be respected for giving their time and energy. it is a mistake to say that either is reflective as a society of a whole. and sometimes not even the majority who vote for candidates in the general election. political science 103 is that primary for president, republican candidates lean to the right, and then if nominated scoot to the center in the general election. democrats vice versa. but in congress, the scoot is
>> on the left the problem is frequent evidence by those that social spending for any compassionate cause is the only moral choice. and on the right by those who assume the moral values of one or another group should be written into law to bind society as a whole. philosophy 101 is the absence of abstraction. legislation is increasingly drawn bipartisan concerns rather than consideration for philosophical emotions like the public interest of the greatest good of the greatest number. idealism has given way to a legislative dynamic in which the dynamic considerations are how to respond to issues of vibrant and a parties base constituencies and how to balance influence a very money interest groups. philosophy 102, there's something about the human condition that wants to be allowed to make governing decisions as socially cohesive levels. there's a lot written today about globalism in this entry. but this entry is also about
localism. to adapt to a fast changing world, one must understand over the phenomenon. the fact is tip o'neill typically noted that all politics are local, and a corollary that all local decisions are affected by international events. caution must accordingly be taken in assuming that great power advocacy of a compassionate cause can necessarily trump the desires of small states to make decisions about their own futures, even seemingly irrational ones. military science 101. military strategy in the last generation has become increasingly sophisticated with the considerations of questions ranging from in game strategies to concern for sustainability of the american public support for policy initiatives. but left out of it in depth consideration have been cultural ramifications. such issues include protection of cultural heritage sites, respect for cultural traditions
but go vastly beyond these concerns. the lesson of our times is that military strategy must include consideration of unintended consequences, particularly the aftereffects of innovation from the perspective of the society most affected. and those in the world that share similar cultural conditions. at issue isn't simply whether democracy is better than other methodologies of social organizations. and whether it can be read imposed from the outside. or whether it is justifiable to seek advance, to advanced and individual rights that increases opportunity to women, minority groups. at issue also is a sobering question of whether good intentions can be counterprcounterproductive and lead to greater internal conflicts, social disruption, and potentially increased radicalization. and whether transformation of many societies more likely to be achieved through other means than military intervention. culture is more powerfully than
politics at any moment. and surprisingly, surprisingly capable of withstanding change brought disproportionally by force of arms. so there is no misunderstanding what i'm suggesting is that strategic thinking that lacks a cultural doctrinal component is inadequate for the times. sports 101. there are profound analogies between politics and sports. a journalist famously got it right three quarters of a century ago when he observed that winning and losing are less important than how the game is played. likewise, in politics. that temper and integrity of political dialogue are more important for cohesive of society then the outcome of any election. the problem in politics is that there are so few rules and no referees. topic must be on perpetual hard, prepared to throw flies when politicians overstepped the bounds of fairness and decency. just as football players, wrestlers or members of a tennis
team compete to win, they also learn to respect their opponents. is it asking too much for candidates and their supporters to do the same in politics? literature 101 involves a set of four books called the alexander quartet by british author lawrence thoreau. between the first and second world wars and the agency of alexander, the first book spins a story from the eyes of one of the participants. then he proceeds to describe the same events and subsequent books each a narrative from the perspective of other participants. one wonders if i'd read about the same event more than once? the reason is that each story is profoundly different. the moral is that to get a sense of reality it is necessary to see things from more than one set of eyes. this may apply to interactions of community, in a courtroom or in international relationship, or what america does may seem reasonable from our perspective but what very different from a
european or an african or a middle eastern or an asian. adding to the eyes and ears of others to one's own capacities, illuminates rather than there is a judgment. reality 101. in the most profound political science observation of the 20th century, albert einstein suggested that splitting the atom changed everything except our way of thinking. human nature may be one of the few constants in history, but 9/11 has taught that thinking must change not simple because destructive power of the big bomb, but because of the impulsive nature of small acts. violent and socialization are rooted in hate, since such thought begins in the hearts and minds of individuals as each of our hearts and minds that hate needs to be checked and our way of thinking changed. reality 102. and the western civilizations most prophetic column, the second coming, william yeats suggests the center cannot hold when the best conviction and the
worst are full of passionate intensity. apocalypse may not be a fuel the study, the chaos is produced, is a prospective related to values. citizens of various philosophical persuasions are reflecting increased disrespect for fellow citizens, and thus for modern-day democratic governance. much of the problem may fall from fast changing nature of our society, which has so many destabilizing elements. but in the feet of politicians and their supporters who use inflammatory rhetoric to divide the country. candidates may prevail on the elections by tearing down rather than uplifting. but if elected they cannot then unite in an angered citizenry. negativity raises the temperature level of legislatures just as it does pierce the soul of society. past congresses have often been feisty, but what is so compounding about today's politics is the break with a
central aspect of the american political tradition. historically legislate decision-making isn't face what might be described as a gilly and give-and-take between the parties. the pieces being one party's perspective, the antithesis of the other is the legislative data, these concerns at each. over the last several decades however, a trend has developed where more precisely becoming accentuated where legislative compromise are being made almost exclusively within whichever party controls congress, rather than between the parties. as a majority party increasingly views itself as exclusive vehicle of legislative governance, the minority sees itself more in the european parliamentary tradition as the opposition. and vice versa. far better it would be for all legislators to consider themselves responsible for governing, and for both sides to recognize that the other is something to say and contribute. in a society as competent as ours has become, it is irrational to think that
republicans cannot find some democratic initiatives helpful to society. and that democratdemocrats cannot from time to time vote with republicans. unlike natural physics where sir isaac newton pointed out that action equals reaction, social chemistry reaction can be greater than action. name-calling in the kindergarten of life can lead to hardening attitude and sometimes physical responses. hands, civil discourse is about more than good manners. to label someone a communist may spark unspeakable acts. to call a country evil may cause a surprisingly dangerous counterreaction. how we lead or fail to lead in an interdependent world would be directly routed to howie our own history, by and diversity of experience is and how deeply we have come to understand and respect other peoples and societies. citizenship is hard. it takes a willingness to listen, watch, read and think in the ways that allow the imagination to put one person in the shoes of another.
in this context, i have proposed that the neh encounter with the state humanity councils aimed at enlarging our understanding of america's traverse cultural heritage in the history, lynnwood and art of other societies. i have also determined to commit a 50 state's ability to her. not to express judgment on any issues of the day, but simply to try to make clear the courses of the public manners can jeopardize social cohesion. civilization requires stability. words matter. just as polarizing attitudes can jeopardize social cohesion and even public safety, healing approaches such as lincoln's call for a new direction with malice towards none, can uplift and health bring society and the world closer together. little is more important for the world's leading democracy in this change intensive century than establishing thoughtfulness and decency of expression in the public square.
if we don't try to understand and respect others, how can we expect them to respect us, our values, and our way of life? thank you. [applause] >> we have lots of questions. so let me start with a few general questions about humanity. what do you think of the overall state of the humanities as you begin your tenure? >> well, there are many ways to look at it. in some ways, if you take extraordinary successes in the united states, it's impressive that america leads the world in almost every field of humanities. absolutely impressive. on the other hand, in many ways
the future is quite cloudy. you are seeing it in colleges and universities, they have cut back in student enrollments, in college and universities support for humanities. at the federal level, the neh, like the national endowment, represents 61000th of 1 percent of federal spending. our particular budget which is symbolic because the main brunt of humanities efforts, the significant brunt, peaked in real dollar terms in 1979. we are barely more than a third of where we were then. in actual dollar terms, it peaked in 1994. and so in terms of spending, we are seeing the crunch of a whole series of directions. priorities in schools are turning towards what appeared to
be job centric disciplines. the universities, state support and private support our contracting. the federal government is not picking up the pieces. at a significant level. and so humanities are in some jeopardy, and so the challenge is to look at priorities. and then to ask the question, are the humanities more important in trying times or less important? or are the arts more important in trying times or not? and in the great depression, a vastly higher percentage was devoted to the arts and humanities than it is today. and there was an understanding in that era that people needed to try to comprehend what was happening around them. and they wanted to record what was happening around them. today, i think we need to look
back a little bit more in our own history, and also recognize that all government programs are costly. but there are few things more costly than not to pay attention to the humanities. and that doesn't mean that institutional framework like the neh is the end-all to end all. but it is not. it is a symbolic insignificant role player in the whole area of the humanities. >> we have heard a great deal about the math and sciences gap between our youth and those in other developed powers. but what is your assessment of our cultural literacy in humanities, and what is neh's role in promoting humanities important? >> we have a traditional role of support for the humanities for research, particularly in history, literature and philosophy. but that role is an exclusively in the abstract academic area.
we also have a public humanities component. we have a wonderful state humanity's councils that are really getting out and talking to publix in very profound ways. some of these efforts are clearly, some of the initiatives that i spoke about earlier in my talk. but i'm getting more and more impressed in education, we make a mistake simply to thank at the higher levels. learning really begins young. and so we have seen some aspects of the broad humanities downgraded in the new approach to testing, and one of the great questions as how you broaden circumstances recognizing that some of these issues are very wise. and so how do you infuse with
the three rs, a creative dimension which can come in many different directions. some of which might be considered the arts, some of which might be considered kind of more philosophical, historical, literary approaches to learning. and my personal belief is this is something that's a challenge at the college level. it's a challenge at the high school level. it's a challenge at the grade and middle school level. we have to look at all of these things. now from the point of view, my kind of institution, we can play a very modest role in all of these efforts, but we cannot realistically size up the way other government agencies might have more resources to do, but we can set the models in place and we can make in an advocacy
sense, issues clear to the public. >> enrollment in history courses is way down in comparison to what it was when you were at princeton. does that worry you? and if so, why? >> i don't think it is imperative that everyone get a history major. i know at harvard, princeton, largest majors are economics, which are seen to be a little more job oriented. by the same token, i do think it is very important whether one majors in engineering or physics or biology, but one also gets a sense of the humanities as well. i might prefer a history major as a recommendation to an individual. if you want to respect how people make their own choices, but i think you also want to make it clear that whatever a major, there is a lot to be
learned in the humanities. and the great model out there is the greatest physicist and the century, of the last century, maybe of all centuries, einstein, who used to do experiments that were incredibly imaginative. in fact, one of the interesting phenomenon, in a einstein was never considered the most extraordinary mathematician around. in fact, he was considered lesser weight mathematically. many at the top of the field. but no one was a greater imagine it's been einstein the arts and humanities are all about is stretching the human imagination. as one looks at a discipline like fizzes, 11 can see how that was very hopeful to einstein, but if one looks at society and ask what are the basic hallmarked structures of
society, it is at these times are symbolized by change and acceleration of change. and that means that we have an increasing number of circumstances that every family faces that are literally unprecedented. that their grandfathers and grandmothers didn't face. and so what that means is that to do with the unprecedented, one has to have an imagination. and it's also helpful to the degree, one can, look at others who might have gone through similar circumstances. that's one of the things you get from reading a novel, reading great literature. but it also, to look at the new, you've got to have the imagination to figure out how it might affect you. and then you have to have the imagination to imagine what else might become. and so this is an aspect of the humanities that it isn't exactly a discipline, it is an effect of the humanities.
that i think is incredibly important in our kind of age. >> putting on your professorial garb, how will cutbacks in newspapers and other journalism staffing affect government and politics? >> well, they clearly are just how and in what ways is not altogether clear to all of us. what we have done is we have democratized, everybody now with their own handheld instruments can be a purveyor of news. and that has never existed before. in some ways, this is incredibly vibrant, incredibly healthy. on the other hand, we appear to be empowering groups to stick with group thought. and it appears we have also been in powering just by twice, the
american public, a new approach to giving types of media. when i was young, as many of you were a bit younger, we had three national networks, and became for. but all the networks appear to be the most independent. some people thought they were all too liberal or whatever, or not liberal enough. but they tried to be mainstream. now you have a sense, a group has said part of america's public is quite conservative, we're going to direct our news to the conservative bias. others have chosen a liberal bias, and others have chosen to try to stay in the senator can and others have chosen, and this is kind of been missed a bit, that may be to be fair will have someone represent the left and someone represent the right. we are being fair. well actually, they may not be fairness in that. because there is a center that doesn't quite identify with the left or the right. and so you have these quandaries
that the press isn't dealing with. we all know there have been studies now, newspaper and media, how it can be saved. i happened to be one that thinks the american newspaper has been a great deal for the country, historically, and that in many ways, and i'm going to say something that's going to surprise you, as you take the best writers in journalist, one of the things that happened over the last 30 years is the best and the brightest in journalism were probably more able with a greater sense of perspective than almost anyone in the legislative electoral politics. and so you had the press get ahead. reports on public lashing became more sophisticated. whether you think of tom friedman, a whole spectrum of people have really been
extraordinary. you read editorial-page of the great newspapers that people like to make fun of. it is astonishing what thoughtfulness goes into writing. and if we lose that, it's very awkward. for society as a whole. that doesn't mean that someone on the internet you also don't get extraordinary things. and there are sites that are developing that are terrific. in fact, there isn't access to every perspective in the world through the internet. and that has to be respected. but the breakdown of the bastions of thought that tries to be representative of the center and then tries to have some perspective of the right and left, i think will be a great loss to society. >> what responsibility, if any,
do cable tv host, radio talkers, and others have in regard to the nature of discourse that affect public debate? >> i think the cable shows have become democratic in the sense that they have looked at constituencies, and trying to appeal. and also beyond that, that we sometimes forget there can be great truth in it great perspectives. and someone makes a mistake to say that this is all bad. now to the degree that some people are using news as entertainment and as a appeal to constituent as rather to a appeal to ideas, one might ask,
might have asked that. but i have a great deal of respect, for great considerable thinkers, great liberal thinkers. .com on capitol hill i used to tell my dear wife who is here today, i held an extra in high regard to some on the left, some on the right, some in the senate. but the same is true in the press. there have been wonderful conservative columnist, wonderful liberal columnists, and wonderful people trying to put it all together. so the challenges to have as many techniques as possible to get as much information to the public, and then hope that the public will look at more than one source. >> how do you win over those who questioned the finding of the neh and the nea during these difficult economic times?
>> simply by asking the question. is it more important to think through the times, or to put one's head in the sand? and when you talk about the costly aspects of our budget today, like they have been less costly if we had brought greater wisdom to bear at given point in time. and the same applies to the future. >> okay. i realize we are not in $1979, but the neh recently got a big budget increase. how would you spend it? [laughter] >> well, we received and we are very grateful to the congress and the president for proposing it. about in 8.5% increase. we will spend it carefully. and one aspect of neh, i am exceptionally proud of because
it is different than virtually all other parts of government, with a couple of exceptions, one thing the national science foundation and our sister organization, we make most of our funding decisions based on the review. that is, we bring the best and brightest in the country 2 decisions about proposals. now and how you design the impact of these proposals, or how much in one category that becomes a judgment omits, and that is why i am stressing that we ought to be looking at the importance in american society of what i'm calling coulters, but in effect these understanding our own mosaic subcultures, peoples of differing backgrounds and different thoughts as was the cultures of other societies.
and the importance of language, the importance of comparative religion studies, the importance of history are just dramatic today. we in america like to think of ourselves as very pragmatic, which means that we like to bounce thoughts before we reach decisions. much of the world thinks historically, and they think by historical analogy. and not to understand how they think means that we can't interrelate very well with them. and in a world that is increasingly international, whether we all liked all of the developments or not, we're going to have to do a better job of understanding the world. and frankly, i think a better job of understanding ourselves. >> the chairman of your sister agency, rocco landesman, who is over there, of the nea, has announced and artworks and initiative. you see a humanities works
counterpart? >> well i am very respectful of rocco's initiative. we do the same thing although we don't exactly use the same set of references. so we each are coining approaches with a given type of vocabulary. but that vocabulary is aimed at the same kinds of answers. >> how specifically will your 50 states ability to her convince people that courses can jeopardize social cohesion? >> well, i can't predict outcome. all i can do is suggest efforts. but i do think the how in american civil supplied he is often more important than the what. >> wha