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tv   Charlie Rose  Bloomberg  March 16, 2017 10:00pm-11:01pm EDT

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♪ >> from our studios in new york city, this is "charlie rose." jeff: good evening, i'm jeff greenfield, filling in for charlie rose. donald trump was not exactly the consensus choice of the republican party, roughly one in five g.o.p. senators refused to endorse him. so did four of the last five republican presidential nominees. but with his election and with the party controlling both houses of congress, republicans of almost all stripes saw a chance to finally enact some of their most significant goals, from tax cuts to the environment to regulation. now the first big test, repealing and replacing obamacare, has set something of a wall of opposition within the
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republican ranks, the house freedom caucus. they say it is obamacare light. some republicans and senators say the plans and medicaid would leave millions without protection. mostow some of trumps ardent supporters like breitbart say they want to break with house speaker paul ryan and forge his own path. how big is the health care fight to the long-term hopes of the party and the president? joining me now, two journalists on the right. bret stephens and deputy editor at the wall street journal. and executive editor of national view. i'm pleased to welcome you to the table. let me start with you, ryan. this can't be what the white house and the republican leadership had hoped to find when they put the health care bill out. >> well, the truth is, this is not really president trump's health care proposal. this is a proposal that's been
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knocking around and involving over a long period of time, in the mind of house speaker paul ryan. and it reflects paul ryan's priorities. and the trump administration has decided to put its muscle behind this legislative proposal. it's not obvious that that's a very sensible thing of the trump administration to be doing. the fundamental problem for ryan and his allies is that the goals that republicans have articulated on health care are really pretty contradictory and irreconcilable. they both have to solve a political problem of not completely unraveling this new health care system that has been created over the past few years. on the other hand, they want to deliver smaller government to their most ardent ideological supporters. and that's a very tough circle to scare. and the trump administration, i don't think that the president himself has thought all that deeply about these questions. what he did do, how he differentiated himself when he ran for the republican nomination, was by presenting himself as a defender of the safety net. lo and behold, he found that many republican primary voters
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responded rather strongly to that message. that's going to be a big problem for him. >> so you have this -- i don't know if it's a paradox, but you have this sort of odd situation where the people who most want an unalloyed repeal, people in the house freedom caucuses, they seem to be the ones who are most urging trump to break with speaker ryan, even though trump's instincts seem to be toward, as you say, preserving the safety net, far from a kind of repeal free market system. >> that's right. the opposition within the republican party to this plan comes from two seemingly very different directions. it comes from people who are styling themselves as ideological purists. yet, who also, funny enough, represent rural constituencies and other constituencies with older voters who benefit from the obamacare status quo. it also comes from republican senators, in particular, who represent more diverse swing constituencies, who represent in some cases states that have
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accepted the obamacare medicaid expansion. so you both have opposition from what you might describe as the left of the party and also from the right of the party. yet in a lot of ways, the kind of base for both of those different kinds of republicans are actually quite similar. >> but, look, this is the problem. you have a congress that, on one side or the other, among the republicans, is in the process of making what amounts to ideological calculations. does the ryan bill go far enough or not? i think the president is making a political calculation, which is, does he want this republican party on his arm or not? to him, the congressional republicans are like a girlfriend who might or might not be interesting to him. maybe that's too colorful -- >> not for pbs. it's a late-night show. >> but -- so, in other words, for trump, he views the republicans, and this generation of the republican party, as basically
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disposable. that's what i don't think the republicans in congress or really the republican base that got behind trump ever really understood. it reminds me, ironically, of arnold schwarzenegger, which is he will be as comfortable governing as a somewhat conservative as he would be as a populist democrat. >> you said something that resonates, when you talked about how he is treating republicans as disposable. i think there's another way of looking at it, which is for a lot of republican primary voters, they feel as though traditional republicans were treating them as disposable and that trump came along and actually spoke to them, spoke up for their interests and pledged to defend them. i think that is a big problem, because paul ryan has an imperative that's an intra-republican imperative. how does he satisfy the think
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tanks donors, satisfy their , zeal for smaller government, whereas trump was speaking to this republican electorate? >> and to that point, stan greenberg, a democratic pollster just did a focus group with 35 trump voters. all of them are staying with him. but they are very angry with the republican congress. they thought that trump had gotten their votes in part because he was not one of them. and so the question is, when you move from that kind of political arena to the legislative process, how does trump satisfy his voters who heard a populist message and get anything through congress? >> the thing is, if we find out in the next week or so that this bill is not going to make its way through congress, that it doesn't lack the support, trump is simply going to turn on the republicans, on ryan. and you already see rumblings of this through his media operations, or -- to say this is the point i was making at the get go. you can't trust these
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republicans, because trump, of course, was never a member of the -- never an actual republican. never part of the party ideologically, barely a part of the party in terms of this formal party affiliation. >> you're suggesting a public and open declaration? >> i don't think it would necessarily hurt trump with his movement, because the republican party was always, now to switch metaphors, essentially the horse he was riding on his way to the presidency. it was a vehicle of convenience. once your horse is exhaustened -- exhausted and collapsed under you, you get on another horse. the trump base that relates to his anger, his nativism, his emotional appeal that he projects to a certain type of voter is not going to abandon him so easily. the people who are going to find themselves disappointed are those movement conservatives who made essentially what amounted to a bargain with the devil, thinking trump is a guy we can control, we can inform.
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he is the jar into which we will pour the sweet wine of paul ryan's agenda. didn't quite work out that way. >> if i may, if you think back to george w bush we've all , forgotten him now, but think back to george w bush re-elected , in 2004, in large part because in the state of ohio, he managed to win the votes of large numbers of lower income folks, many of them women. he did surprisingly well with african-american voters in that state. he won them over because george w. bush seemed to them like someone who was going to defend america's interests, look out for the interests of people like them, working and middle class voters in these states. and then, shortly after he was inaugurated, what did he press forward with? social security reform at a time, by the way, when defined benefit pensions were going away, when a lot of people were awfully anxious about wage stagnation and a guest worker program. not to mention that he was going to spread democracy around the world. so that was his program, despite having won on the strength, again, of these working and middle income voters.
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so for donald trump right now to abandon ryan care, which is a set of ideas that pretty much every conservative is quickly abandoning for its seeming on feasibility for trump to abandon , this now, would in my view be a very astute reading of actual flesh and blood republican voters. >> but then you have this other little -- i don't know if it's an 800-pound gorilla or an 800-pound elephant, but it's something, which is i hear it on conservative talk radio. we heard it from the press secretary, that look, it's a binary choice. if you want to repeal obamacare, this is all you have. frankly, it sort of reminds me of a story. guys at a bullfight. sees a vendor with a sign, hot meat pies, ten pesos. gives him the money, bites into it, it is cold, it is doughy and there's no meat. and the vendor says no, hot meat pie, that's the name of the pie. the question is, are we at a point where republicans are so desperate to say we repealed
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obamacare that they're going to argue, don't even worry what is in it. if we don't repeal obamacare, we're going to disappoint all the people who have been waiting eight years for this? >> look, that is a perfectly fair point. that if they don't get this bill through, then this republican congress is a failure. you are just as -- you are setting up a democratic majority or super majority in 2018 just as surely as the failure of hillary care back in 1993 set up the republicans for the newt gingrich ascendency a year later. i think that may be the thought that at the bottom is going to win over both freedom caucus types, wavering moderates, who say we have to get behind this or there won't be a republican party. there will not be a taxcutting agenda or the platform that they want to enact.
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this presidency or i should say , this congress will be dead on arrival. >> to me, that reflects a kind of bizarre fantasy about republicans and what republicans actually want. in the rand corporation, they conducted a study and found that 51% of republican primary voters favored increasing taxes on people who earned more than $200,000 a year. if you look at the larger universe of republican voters, that number would be comparable or higher because primary voters tend to be more affluent than the public at large. >> so let me just ask you, why in the health care bill are the tax credits skewed so dramatically toward the more affluent? >> thank you very much, jeff. well-done. so you got right on to this. so in this legislation, if you had a bit more revenue -- the hard thing in obamacare, was to actually get this revenue. and, again, you might want to have tax cuts down the line. you might want to have bigger middle class tax cuts. that's something that many republicans would enthusiastically support. but where was the grassroots furor for cutting taxes for
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people earning millions and millions of dollars? right? if you're looking it tax cuts on investment, that is really the chief accomplishment of ryan care, relative to all the other disruption and harm that it may well cause. and that sends a really bad signal. it's one thing for republicans the pledge, we are going to have a tax reform that will grow the economy, focus on corporate taxes, make america a more attractive destination, that would have been a great first thing to do. but instead you have ryan acting as though there's some kind of time limit on obamacare. this is not the debt limit. this is not something that's going to blow up in your face if we don't do it right now. and getting the sequence right matters a lot in politics. had bill clinton passed welfare reform before he moved on to health reform, it's quite possible we wouldn't have had the republican revolution of 1994. if george w. bush tried doing something about the woes of middle-class folks before
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passing a big tax cut, the politics of the bush years would have been very different too. trump has an opportunity to get this right by cutting ryan loose. >> part of the problem here is that the republicans are fantasizing that they have an opportunity, comparable to the one that obama had in 2009. the difference is eight seats in the senate. and that's the significant difference in that obama had just, and just, if you remember the obamacare debate, just enough political capital in tose two years from 2009 2010, to just push through something as big as obamacare. the real lesson, i think he's exactly right. the presidencies that succeed do it by taking small steps and winning every time, rather than trying to reverse something as large as this as your first order of business. ♪ >> so let's say that president
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trump comes to the realization that you know what? i won with a message that was essentially populist, you know. half of my inaugural speech could have been given by bernie sanders. so i've been misled by the republican leadership. i'm going to refashion or i'm going to have my people refashion
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the health care bill that's allied with what i'm going to do with taxes that really is devoted to the middle class. and as i said in the campaign, i'm not really interested in helping those who already have so much. is that a plausible political road for him to take? >> it is, because i've always thought, and this is one of the reasons i'm a never trumper, is that actually donald trump, ideologically, would be more comfortable in the democratic party than in the republican party. that his emphasis on social protection, his belief in infrastructure spending, all of these align at least with classic democratic economic agenda. he defined about a year ago, before the election, he was asked what the future of the republican party would be in five or 10 years' time. he actually gave, to my surprise, a really coherent answer. he said i see the republican party as a workers' party. all right? not a party of plutocrats, entrepreneurs, capitalists and
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so on. the base that famously protected him. they want protection, whether it's protection from competition from immigrants or illegal immigration, they want protection from what they see as a muslim cord invading the country, that fantasy. they want social protections, a corporate state of a kind that we have examples of from, frankly, argentina. this is very different from the republican party that i came of age with, under ronald reagan. >> and if i may, just to set up or maybe i won't set up. i'll try. it always seemed to me that donald trump was a third-party candidate who figured that the only way a third-party candidate could actually win the white house was to take one of the two parties. and both parties are so hollowed out in terms of institutional forces that could prevent that, that he did it. in that case, if donald trump tried to redefine the republican party along populist lines, how does that work, given who the leadership is in the house and senate?
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mitch mcconnell is populist, paul ryan is populist, in the sense of changing the tax laws. that's a pretty hard road. >> well, when you're thinking about the two parties, one way to think about them is purely through an ideological lens. and another way to think about them is, what are they representing? over the last 20 or so years, the democratic party has evolved into more of what you might call a bar bell party. it's a party that represents large numbers of working class people, particularly working class people of color, and it also represents a larger number of college educated, and some rich people, as well. if you look at the 2012 election, barack obama outperformed mitt romney among voters in households earning more than $200,000 a year. it was the first time a democrat had pulled off that feet -- feat since so then the republican 1964. party is a party that represents the broad american middle. right now it's largely the white middle. but it represents parts of the country that are more egalitarian, less cosmopolitan.
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and parts of the country that have been hard hit by global integration. so to me, that is a place that should prompt republican politicians to think about, how do i better represent the interests of this constituency? of course there are ideological imperatives but i think that's a good starting point. i think donald trump's politics were a very good starting point for thinking about, how do we actually take these parts of the country that have been left out of rising prosperity and deliver this message? we want to make sure that everyone in the country is progressing with global economic integration, with automation, with rapid change. and the republican party can be the party that ensures that everyone is making that transition. right now it's not. >> you described yourself as a "never trumper," and your columns reflect that. let me ask you not about him, but about the broader republican party. is there anything in the republican party leadership, in their agenda, that fits what ryan was just talking about in terms of where they want the tax cuts to go, how they want to
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protect workers? is there anything substantive that you can point to that says -- >> look, you know, the republican party at its best is a party that represents aspiration, opportunity and inclusion. it's a party that says we can -- we are going to get government out of the way so that you can pull yourself up without being burdened by regulation. so something like, you know, for instance the push for greater school choice, greater opportunity for disadvantaged minorities, a perfect example of that kind of party. in fact, the classic ryan sort of -- if you want to call it that -- the ryan wing of the republican party, i don't think it's antithetical to that, although it doesn't do a fantastic job of presenting itself in those colors. what is antithetical to that is the kind of nativism, close your doors, you know, batten down the hatches republicanism,
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represented by donald trump. but you're absolutely right in that this wing of the party has not done a particularly good job of selling that vision of republicanism, in part, i would argue, because it so wholly has given itself over to trumpism, to working with donald trump, rather than trying to make clear what the differences are between old-fashioned reagan-style republicanism and the nativism rep -- represented by trump. >> when we talk about government getting out of the way, i'm often sympathetic to it. the problem is, when you think about school choice, when you think about changing the health care system, you actually need to know how these institutions work. and when you take this reflexive anti-government view, as attractive as it might be, that means you're oftentimes bereft of the know-how that's required to actually make these things happen. that's been a big party for the
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-- a big problem for the republican party, number one. number two, bret has referred to nativism. i want to be clear that there's a big difference between contempt for immigrants, just a random distaste for them as though they're somehow worse people, and also a belief that the united states, like all other countries, is a country that needs to be thoughtful about our immigration policies and wants to be sure that our immigration policies serve our national interests and the interests of vulnerable americans, including the children of immigrants, who are often quite poor. i think that our policies to date, you know, and also policies among many pro-immigration republicans take the view that let's let in large numbers of impoverished people and then deny them access to medicaid and snap and earned income credits and a panoply of other programs. trump came out and said that that does not make a lot of sense. lo and behold, most republican primary voters agreed with him.
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>> immigration views that are really represented in the trump immigration are those of the iowa congressman king. other people's baby. i have to give him credit. he perfectly captured, in his way, exactly what this wing of the republican party -- nobody on earth says we should have no kind of -- we should have a completely irrational or open border system. >> some people say we should have an open border system. on the extreme libertarian right >>on the extreme libertarian right perhaps, you can find that. everyone understands that you need a regulated immigration system. nobody -- that's a -- >> what is the principle, the basis of regulation? should the basis be a national interest or should it be what's in the interests of employers? >> what is a national interest? i mean, look, my mother arrived in this country with seven dollars to her name. she was a refugee. all right? and then in the space of one generation, her son is routinely accused of being elitist, one of
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the great triumphs of american democracy i would say. >> and when you're looking at folks in appalachia, and in the mississippi delta, these are folks that we neglect. why? because we can. >> no. >> it's because we can, because we've decided to replace one workforce with another. that's not to say that immigration isn't a wonderful thing that enriches our country. but it also means that having a more thoughtful policy is not crazy. having a policy that emphasizes skills, having a policy that's designed to enrich the country, is not somehow -- >> look, you know perfectly well that what threatens workers in proverbial appalachia is not a mexican or honduran immigrant, it is automation. >> we need to take this subject back a little to where we started. although this is clearly one of the arguments that's going to be at the heart and soul of the republicans. i wanted to ask a perhaps less lofty question. clearly a lot of republicans made their peace with donald
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trump, despite some significant questions about temperament and character, because they thought, a, it's a binary choice. we either get him or we lose the supreme court for a generation. my question is, to what extent, if there is legislative gridlock, if the obamacare repeal crashes and burns, if there are increasing tensions between 1600 pennsylvania avenue and the other end in congress, to what extent will the patience of some republicans with donald trump's more erratic behavior begin to whither? in other words, do you expect that there will be people willing to step away from, say, no, don't take this seriously or literally because he's our guy? to what extent do you think he risks a certain erosion within his own party if he can't do legislatively what the congressional wing is hoping he'll do? >> my sense is that if trump
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were to prevent republicans from doing something politically disastrous, they may well be beholden to him. congress is an independent and coequal branch of government. it is the job of congress, regardless of the party in charge to do , its job of holding the executive branch accountable. so you may well be right that there's some political calculation going on here, but my view is, if there are serious questions, and i think there are, about the trump administration, about its, you know, ties to foreign governments and what have you, those should be investigated by congress. >> what i find stunning is the resilience of trump's supporters. i wrote about this just the other week. i mean, so far, seven weeks of the trump administration -- just think how much political capital, how many political opportunities have been squandered in one self-inflicted wound after another, one stupid tweet after another that simply seems to consume all of the administration's energies.
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and you would think, or i would think, that this would make thoughtful trump supporters say, this isn't quite what i signed up for. i signed up for a guy who knew how to drive a bulldozer and was going to drive it right through congress to accomplish a task. you mention the polling data out of michigan. that does not seem to be happening. look, trump is, a cult of personality figure. to understand the trump phenomenon, we have to look at political phenomena that go beyond the regular democratic experience, which is why i juanoned someone like peron in argentina. why is it that he has this emotional pull on his core supporters that can't be explained by results? >> that's where i think a lot of us miss the point, going back a year and a half. and it's one of the few things i think i got right. from the very beginning. we hading we thought been taught was a bug was a feature.
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the very vulgarity proved that he was not a prisoner of the kind of establishment, the very fact that he was wanted to break the china, the fact that he boasted of his money was a way to say he is too rich to steal any camp he bought. the resiliency he has now you can trace back to what all of us thought he'll never make it through the first insult of mccain. >> donald trump has a stronger attachment to a republican base, and a republican base that is very skeptical of republicans who don't seem to have their interests in mind. the truth is that trump never would have happened if you had a republican party that was more responsive to the party. >> i think it's a mistake to think of trump as an agenda phenomenon, like he was speaking about immigration or trade. he could completely flip his views on any number of these subjects over the next year or so. and i don't think that would
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necessarily alter his base's attachment. a guy wrote me -- i get literally thousands of letters for my columns. they become almost a representative sample of trump support. i thought the best letter was a guy who said you don't get it. we know he's vulgar. we know he's crass. we know he doesn't have a command of policy issues. but at last we have a president -- and since i'm on public television, it's a word that rhymes with a spanish word that rhymes with drawers. that's what they got. here was a politician who was not -- who never backed down. who never apologized. the appeal went well beyond what trump was saying about immigration or any number of other subjects. it was a sense that here was a guy who at last didn't care what guys like me or guys like you -- think about him. >> exactly. but the question, if i may, cannot sustain, legislative defeats in which his core supporters say, well, you promised you'd deliver us something?
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or is this bond with trump so strong that they will simply accept his version of reality, you know -- i was betrayed or the republicans were too weak -- in other words, how resilient is the resilience? >> it depends on his opposition. if his opposition proves effective, if you have democrats who acknowledge that we ought to have an immigration policy that is based in legality or in national interests, trump will be in big trouble. if his opposition enables him, by trying to marginalize some of these commonsense views, then he may well get away with it. but the fundamental issue is, the reason why i emphasize the agenda part, and you're right, trump is not someone who is a programmatic policy thinker, but if you had a candidate running -- another candidate, a disciplined, restrained person, running on a national interest agenda, saying much, as reagan did, that yes, we favor free trade but we are certainly going to punish those who violate the rules. if you had someone along those lines, that candidate would have
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won this election in a land side. had you run the 2016 presidential election 10 times, nine times out of 10 trump would have lost. that election was won by the skin of his teeth. and again if you had another republican who was aligned with a base, more measured, more, dare i say it, centrist on some issues pertaining to the safety net that candidate would , have won overwhelmingly. >> well, i mean, that's a counterfact. we're never going to know. i come back to this theme. i think it's very important. i think what you are thinking about trump in terms of american -- as another american politician in an american political tradition, and he simply isn't that. he's out of -- he landed as it were on a comet, so to speak. he is i think the most -- if you want to think of him in a global way, he is the most
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representative example of a wave of illiberalism. you can see it in the te, and ins with duter france with marine le pen. and in the netherlands with wilders. of liberaltions are and illiberal. it is married to a cult of personality and that's his strength. i don't think you're going to end up finding a new republican party but sort of adjusting or erasing traditional republican beliefs and the virtues of free markets. >> here's the problem. you literally have a lot of conservative outlets who claim that the basic center right christian democratic consensus that you have in many other countries is socialistic. you have them claiming it's crazed lunacy. that's why you couldn't have a center right republican party
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that recognizes that people depend on the safety net. by marginalizing and stigmatizing all those who said, hey, maybe we need child tax credits for middle-income parents to help raise their kids. by saying that is socialism, you open the way to someone like donald trump. the idea that this is something -- somehow illiberalism that's driving this, to me seems silly. it's a failure on the part of mainstream republicans. >> i think it would be a fine idea if charlie at the end of this legislative session has you both back and weekend play these comments and see if the next three to six months bear it out. but i will just say this is one thing i think is kind of universal. this is a presidency unlike anything we have ever seen or maybe even could have imagined. ryan, bret, thank you very much. ♪
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>> if you are having trouble reaching an office in the next few weeks, it might be because the workers are too busy checking their brackets. seeing how their choices are doing, as they make their way through three weeks of competition that will decide who wins the ncaa men's basketball title. march madness is one of sports -- one of america's a gift sports spectacles and the money at stake is also very big. cbs and sports are in the midst of a 20 year $19.6 billion , dollar deal
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for broadcast rights. a single ad in the finals goes for $1.5 million. americans will bet an estimated $9 billion on the games. while the tournament produces memorable moments like this game-winning shot by villanova's chris jenkins at the buzzer last year, there is also a long record of scandals and controversies. players coddled through their academic work, shady recruitment practices and the bigger question of whether those athletes are exploited by their schools and the ncaa. joining me in new york, bill rhoden, a columnist and editor at large for espn's "the undefeated." and author of "$40 million slaves." joe nocera is author of "indentured: the inside story of the rebellion against the ncaa." and from orlando, john feinstein, sports columnist for the washington coast and author of among many books, "the , legends club." i am pleased to welcome you all. explain to the uninitiated what makes march madness so compelling.
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>> well, i think it's two things. it's the one and out nature of the event. it's not best of seven. teams can be the number one seed, number two seed, whatever. they lose, they have a bad shooting night, somebody is hurt at the wrong time, they're done. but more than that, it's the true underdog aspect of the so-called double-digit seeds, those teams seeded 10 and higher, who have a real chance to win early round games and in some cases actually get to the final four. george mason got to the final four in 2016. -- in 2006. v.c.u. got to the final four in 2011. and butler, which is now in a big-time lead, got to the final four in 2010 and 2011 to the championship games. we love to root for underdogs and the ncaa gives us underdogs like no other event in sport does. the mennly arena where of princeton are considered
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underdogs in life. i take your point. is it also the nature of the competition that there are individuals that we're going to keep a special eye on? i'm thinking of a certain 17-year-old from ucla, for instance. >> yes. and the shame of it, though, jeff is that lonzo ball will not be a sophomore at ucla. he won't be a junior at ucla. he's going to be playing in the nba next year. that's one thing that has changed over the years, because the nba passed a rule saying you must go to college for one year before you can go in the nba draft. but after that, you can. it used to be that a great player like lebron james or kobe bryant might skip college altogether and go to the pros. but most guys who didn't do that would stay at least three or four years and we got to know them. they were almost part of our family. a kid like grant hill, who stayed at duke for four years, almost became part of people's families. that's why he's still so popular even now, 23 years after he graduated. it's not the same, but there's no doubt that somebody will emerge
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as a star at the end of this tournament. last year, it was chris jenkins making the shot that you showed. by the way, he is a senior at villanova. >> let's stay with the tournament itself for a minute or two. handicap this for us. >> oh, god. i mean -- that's -- >> did i put you too much on the spot? >> that's great. everybody knows i'm not on the spot. who knows maybe john knows. , >> i'm glad you got that question, bill. >> yeah, i know. the thing is -- and john touched on it -- the beauty of this is, and for me, the most compelling part of these next two weeks, when you've got the so-called underdogs, we all know that after these two weeks, it's pretty much going to end up with big money. it is going to be with duke, north carolina. i mean, in this context, if ucla makes the final four, it's kind of an upset, because a, they're in another time zone. so i would not be surprised if the final four is duke, carolina. i don't know if that can happen.
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but duke, carolina, kansas and i think i would put in ucla, just because it's a really good story. but this whole idea of the underdog, i mean, after these two weeks, to me, it becomes very predictable. >> and there's another aspect to this, because you've written not just about the surface of sports but what's underneath it. to some extent, when you watch this tournament, is it a guilty pleasure? do you watch it knowing full well some of the less attractive aspects --? >> not me. i mean, we all know where all the bodies are buried. if i'm tearing up, it's not because i'm crying for the exploitation of the athletes. no. it is the makeup. we're all big guys now. and i tell kids, from the age of 16, that you're either going to be -- or 14 -- you're either going to be the tool or the carpenter. you make that choice. you make the choice. so by this time, when we see the competition, you know, you've got an opportunity to get an
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education. you make that call. i think more of the exploitation is this idea of making people have to go somewhere. go to ucla for a year or two as opposed to let them do what tennis players do or anybody else. if you're good enough to play professionally, go. but this idea of kind of having to make them stay for a year, it does turn things into a farce. >> i don't think anyone has written more critically about that ncaa institution than you. despite that do you watch this , tournament with at least one eye as a fan, or do you watch with the knowledge of what you see as a pretty un-- >> i definitely watch it as a fan. i can enjoy it, i grew up in providence. i have rooted for providence all my life. that hasn't really changed. but i go in knowing that every aspect of this tournament is about maximizing revenue. every aspect.
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you can't walk into your seat with a product that's not ncaa sponsored. they actually take them away from you as you walk in through the gate to take your seat. every aspect of this is commercial. they maximize the revenues, except for the labor force, as i like to put it. the labor force does it for free. so you know that. you know the players are enjoying it. but there's something wrong. there is something wrong. >> to what extent do you think the way that the fans get immersed in these two weeks, particularly the bracketology, of dollars, -- be tting of to what extent do you dollars, think that in a way shields this event and an institution like the ncaa from a more public accounting of what they've done? you do not need bracketology to shield the ncaa. the average fan does not care. if you go to an alabama football
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game, and you start to ask people about the exploitation of athletes, they'll laugh at you. if you go to an ncaa final four game, they'll laugh at you. the average -- there's a segment of the society that has come to view this as a problem. i'm among those people. someone that views something wrong is happening here in the way they are treated both in , terms of financial exploitation and academic exploitation. but most people don't care. >> john, do you care? john feinstein, should we care? >> oh, i care and i watch the games. i enjoy these first and second-round games that bill is referencing more than any, because it does involve the smaller schools, where there are not the big bucks. but it's not the bracketology that shields what's going on, jeff. it's television. television presents the best of the ncaa tournament. we see the fantastic finishes. clyy do all these trea
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stories on these wonderful, quote, student athletes as the ncaa always calls them, as television always calls them. they do these interviews with coaches and players in which, you know, they're all going to save the world, when they get out of college. there's a psa that runs every year during the tournament which says there are 470,000 student athletes in the ncaa who will never play in the nba or the nfl, and you've got a kid who is a swimmer and plays the violin and has a 4.0 gpa, as if he's the typical student. i think that's where they sell it. they sell the tournament and the people playing in the tournament very well. but you can still acknowledge that the games are great, that the players are terrific at what they do and enjoy the competition, while knowing, as bill said, that there's something behind that door that they don't want you to see. >> yeah. and, again, we've all been doing this for decades. i've been going almost 40 years. it's nothing to become jaded. but we all have our passions about what's wrong.
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my passion, i'm less -- and joe and i have kind of been on the other side of this. i'm less concerned about the exploitation of athletes. now i look at the media. i look at the media, and what you're going to see tonight, you're going to see a media that is almost 99% white. if you look at anything around it, event production, everything around it is white. the only thing -- the only role that black folks play are gonna -- are going to be these 10 kids on the court maybe. but if you look at our industry, the media, which is overwhelmingly white, to me that is a passion i have. how could we correct that? you could argue that the ncaa is trying at least to do things with gpa's or make sure we get rid of the $20 million coaches. but our industry, and that's all i can deal with, our industry remains this sort of almost exclusionary industry that we'll deal with these black guys on the floor, but in terms of the coaches, there are fewer black coaches. that is my -- to me, when joe
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says something is wrong, now, that's something that's wrong. that's our industry. that's something that we should be having as much passion with eradicating as whether a kid gets a billion dollars after staying for one year. >> there are 65 schools in the power five conferences. nine of them have african-american coaches. 70% of the players are african-american. and with all this hand wringing about graduation rates, which, you know, there's reason to wring your hands -- i'm here at a golf tournament. the golf players don't graduate at any better rate than basketball players do. very few of them that play on the tour are college graduates but nobody worries about it. why? because they're not african-american and everybody is concerned that an african-american without a college degree can't survive in society today. but a white kid, who is no smarter, no better educated, they think is going to be okay. i think bill is right on it. >> i just think, bill, if you've got 10 black kids on the field making all these white people
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rich, which they're doing, and not being compensated for it, to me, there's something wrong with that. >> the compensation -- i hear what you're saying. but the compensation should be the degree. >> why do you get to decide that? why do you get to decide that? >> i think anybody if in civilized america thinks it's -- in our community, education has always been the key. it's always been the key. and i think, to all of a sudden make this about money, that well, you know, we are getting paid, no. the payment should be your degree. the payment should be education. and i like the idea -- >> so if katie ledecky gets $200,000 from the olympics and she's allowed to swim as she is, in college, why is that okay? why is there nothing wrong with that? which the ncaa allows. but for a black kid to get a booster -- >> we're talking about two things. we're talking about how each sport kind of picks and chooses
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who it allows to make money. the fact is that, and what you're talking about is the plantation system. basketball, football, at the highest level, supports everything. they are the two money-making revenue sports. >> just to be clear, the point here is that those big-money sports support, for instance, women's athletes of the colleges? >> they support everything. >> everything. >> if these top 25 schools, and these kids doing the heavy lifting -- you know, the football, basketball, so the field hockey people, so the swimmers can play, why shouldn't they be compensated? i'm saying, sure, i think in football, yes i agree that if , you go to a bowl game and there's a $2 million payoff, i absolutely agree there should be some revenue sharing. maybe you get 10% put into an escrow that when you graduate, you have access to it. no problem with that. >> the point is, as somebody who
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you might have expected to play in big-time college athletics, it does occur to me if i had written a book and it was a big success and i wrote it while i was in college, i'd have made a lot of money from that. i think the question that joe keeps raising is very valid. why is this the one group that is not permitted to profit when they are helping other parts of the university make a ton of money? >> well, and that is a very good and important point to make. i've always said, when i was a sophomore in college, if the washington post had come to me and said, we think you are the next great sportswriter and we're going to pay you $100,000 a year right now, which back then was like $1 million now, i never would have been a junior. i would have said this is what i'm training to do. i think i'm good at it. somebody else is willing to pay me to do it. why do i need my college degree? carl bernstein never graduated from college. he did okay. but the point about paying the athletes, there are all sorts of issues.
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joe knows this better than i do. he's more expert in this area than i am. there are issues with taxes and scholarships and things like that. but bill's idea is headed in the right direction. create a trust fund. for the athletes, in football and men's basketball. and say, when you graduate, you know -- lonzo ball isn't going to need that money, but most of the players on the ucla team $35,000, $40,000, and have an incentive to graduate to get that money and maybe more athletes would graduate then. that would be good for everybody. and the other thing about it is, people are going to say, well title ix. you can't do it because you have to compensate the women's athletes. no, you don't. the women's athletes of connecticut, yes, because they make the school money. you write the bill or whatever it might be to say any revenue sport. a sport that makes money for the school, whether it's men's or women's or soccer or whatever it might be. and that way, title ix isn't an
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issue. >> let me turn to joe. do you think that there is movement toward the paying of athletes? >> no, no. it will never happen. the only way it would happen is if the athletes themselves went on strike and that is not going to happen. there are a lot of people who thought five years ago, that the legal system was going to fix this. and it's very, very clear that that will not happen, that the legal system has basically said, in the court of appeals in california that the ncaa rules of amateurism violate america's anti-trust laws. but the courts are unwilling to take the next logical step and say therefore, you have to get rid of the rules. instead, the courts have basically said you can fiddle around with the rules but you can keep them. so the fact is, there's no incentive on the part of anybody in the system to pay the players, except the players. >> different point, if i may. because you raised the issue of television. you work for espn, which is in
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the odd position sometimes of celebrating the athletes. the promos alone are something out of a massive hollywood concept, also covering the darker side. my question is, and luckily for you, espn is not broadcasting the ncaa, do you think when north carolina takes the floor, we are going to hear about some of the allegations about academic bending of rules that have shadowed north carolina? >> i think you will. you have to. i mean, espn -- again, i work for the times, for 35 years, and that was a different kind of animal. yes espn has actually butted , heads with roger goodell because of how one side of his sphere has really covered the nfl and concussion issues. i think, yes, you have to talk about ncaa and north carolina and the sort of darker issues of the academic fraud. you have to. let me just say one thing. i played football.
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i played at morgan state university. i played for four years. and, you know, this was an -- was i exploited? sure. i had a mentor who we played every year at yankee stadium. and he stopped going, because he said, you know, you guys are -- there's a thing. you're going to get exploited. i was 19. i was having a ball. i was an english major. got a degree. there were guys who are doctors now, lawyers. i guess what i'm saying to joe is, yeah, there are things that are definitely wrong with the system. but this is one of the most unique systems in the world where you can actually go to a university and be a runner or a swimmer, and get a degree and get a college degree. there's nothing wrong with that. i think that's a good thing. now, do we need to tweak things? yes, but in terms of eliminating, getting rid of, you are going to hurt more people by just eliminating this than you're going to help. >> well, are you talking about eliminating this -- you're not talking about cancelling the ncaa tournament, are you?
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>> no, no, absolutely not. look, my thing is pretty simple. when you have an exploited labor force that's not getting its economic value and making everybody else rich, you should change that system. that's what it really comes down to. i don't think a scholarship is nearly enough, especially as you just brought up, north carolina, since so much of the academics is substandard. and it's worth pointing out that north carolina was in the final four last year. and, you know, the scandal came up. i won't say it was glossed over. but at a certain point, there wasn't much to say. that's true this year, because it still hasn't been settled. >> john, this is sort of -- >> by the way, roy williams, north carolina coach, says he hopes it's settled before the end of his life, because the and the aa good at dragging its feet. [laughter] >> let me thank you, joe nocera, john feinstein, bill rhoden. pleasure to have you. ♪ >> it is honest 11:00 here.
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i am david ingles. welcome to bloomberg markets: asia. ♪ >> global equities are on source for the best week. the post fed rally seems to be losing a little bit of steam. toshiba one of the winners across the equities space. won backing from a fund. in anotherpsi banned
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indian state. and that the hatred against the two big cola makers. equities. currencies, commodities and bonds. when you take to ban out of the mix, what a session we are having. have a look at this. this is one of the markets we are following. this is one of the later ones to open, and indonesian market. jakarta hitting a record high, a 17 year chart. here is your price level. this is your 14 day rsi. i brought the bottom panel up, we're at 17 for the rsi. the momentum may have gotten too strong, too quick in a short amount of time. that being said, interesting comments coming out of goldman sachs. indonesian equities see the


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