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tv   Book TV  CSPAN  November 28, 2009 7:00am-9:00am EST

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abbreviated with the letters. >> jeff megargee is the editor of volumes -- of the entire project but here volume one is now out, encyclopedia of camps and ghettos, 1933 to 1945. thank you. >> thank you very much. >> politics and economics professor allison stanger looks at the increasing use of private contractors by the u.s. government. she says that with proper oversight contractors can be valuable tools for carrying out foreign policy. the national association of foreign student advisors association of international educators is the host event. it's about an hour. >> okay. well, welcome. i'm marlene johnson, executive director and ceo of nafso association of international educators and we are so happy to have you here?
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-- in our almost new place. this has been our list to do for quite a long time. so we're really pleased that you came out despite this rainy weather which stops only washingtonions so we must have a lot of people from the midwest here. [laughter] >> how many people from the midwest? there we go. that's why we have such a good turnout here. so thank you very much for being here. just to let you know, those of you who are new to us, nafsa is the professional association for higher education folks who work on international student mobility. we bring the students here and we send our students out. and we also have a lobbying group, a public policy advocacy group that speaks to issues of immigration, policy, student visa policy, h1b issues and our
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flagship project at the moment is to secure passage of the senator paul simon study abroad foundation act which would have as a goal sending 1 million american students to study abroad every year from the year 2020. so really important legislation. it's passed the house. it's in the senate. so when you talk to your members or when you say your prayers, whatever you do to activate the universe, do something on behalf of the senator paul simon study abroad award. we believe that the exchange of students is an essential part of developing a healthy foreign policy for this country. we believe the students who come here and go there are doing the most important part of citizen diplomacy in the here and now and in the future, they are the young people who become the
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diplomats, the business leaders, the doctors, the attorneys -- those people who build a society that believes in a strong foreign policy and who participate actively in a foreign policy. so this is our part of contributing to that larger mission that this soaring all about. -- that this organization is all about. we welcome patricia ellis to introduce our speaker today. pat? >> thank you. good evening, everyone. and welcome. we're so pleased that you could join us this evening. as marlene he said, i'm patricia ellis president of the foreign policy group which promotes women's leadership and women's voices on pressing international issues of the day. thank you so much, marlene and thank you to nafsa for having us here this evening. it's just a great pleasure to be here for our first partnership particularly with one of our institutional members.
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so we really, really appreciate that. and we're very much looking forward to this author series event with professor allison stanger, director of the center for international affairs at middlebury college and author of the new and very timely book "one nation under contract: the outsourcing of american power and the future of foreign policy." i just wanted to mention in addition -- i will introduce our speaker a little bit more in a few minutes. but i just wanted to mention something very timely. she has recently briefed the senior leadership of the state department including secretary clinton on this very issue that we will be discussing tonight. so i think that that is quite exciting.
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i also wanted to welcome wfpg members, nafsa members and alums from middlebury college and i think we have quite a number of them here. and our author series is one of our really popular series. most recently we had an event on iran a woman who wrote her book about her imprisonment in iran. she's the director of the middle east program at the wilson international center for scholars. and once again, we have another very timely program tonight. i also wanted to mention one other upcoming and extremely timely event that we will be holding with ambassador richard holbrooke. it's obviously on afghanistan and pakistan. he is the u.s. representative for afghanistan and pakistan. this is on november 16th.
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and we hope that you can all join us. and we hope that you'll all be able to join the wfpg as well. so just a little bit more. and i'm just going to give you the highlights because dr. stanger has a very impressive background. and i'll just mention a few of her many accomplishments. she is officially the russell l. lange international politics chair of the political science department and director as i mentioned of the center for international affairs at middlebury. she is a prolific writer in addition to her current book, she was the coeditor and cotranslator of "irreconcilable differences" talking about czechoslovakia's dissolution. she's written many articles, essays, op-eds which have
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appeared in the "washington post," the financial times and she has had numerous fellowships. i'll just mention a few. overseas she had fellowships in prague and moscow and she's been a fellow at the center for european center and harvard center of international affairs, brookings institution and contributed to a number of very important studies including the princeton project on national security. so after we hear from dr. stanger, we will open it up to q & a. and then she has agreed to stay here and sign her books. i hope you will all take advantage of getting a book. and thank you once again for joining us and thank you again for having us. dr. stanger. [applause]
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>> thanks, thanks very much for that very generous introduction. and it's great -- it's just absolutely great to see so many of my former students in this audience. as a alums of middlebury college and american foreign policy i know i'm going to get some good questions. it's wonderful to see you despite the bad weather. i want to start with a rhetorical question just to get us warmed up. why do the firms who recently benefited from government handouts and loans continue to have so much power in the contemporary political system? now, a lot of potential explanations floating around out there. one might be that there's some sort of wall street conspiracy against main street. others point to the revolving door between business and government which allows market values to reign supreme in washington.
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what most americans, however, do not realize is that one big reason that money has captured our politics is because our government, our federal government today, is but a shadow of its former self. let me just cite one statistic to capture that for you. the size of the federal executive work force in 1963 is exactly the same as it was in 2008, the same number of full-time employees. yet in that same period of time, the size of the federal budget in real terms has more than tripled. that gap is at least in part filled by contractors. that we have become what i call one nation under contract means that there is no longer any vigorous and disinterested government to turn to for help. and this is not a partisan problem.
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democrats and republicans alike embraced outsourcing the work of government to the private sector whenever possible. both as a way to cut costs and a way -- as a way to chase that elusive goal of efficiency. my book focuses on just a smaller slice of what is really a much larger problem. it tells the story of how contractors came to dominate our foreign policy across the so-called three ds, diplomacy, defense and development. and what it really argues just in a nutshell, i'll give you the nutshell version first, is that the core business of foreign policy has really changed. yet, our strategies and frameworks for thinking about foreign policy have lagged behind the result as outsourced as presently practiced is scandalous but turning the clock
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back and reasserting top-down government control, tempting though it may be is no solution. it's no solution because outsourcing done right can fuel both innovation and efficiency. expanding opportunities for individuals to make a difference especially in the development realm. so we don't need insourcing. or what some on the right would call socialism. we need what we call smart sourcing. and i'll say a bit more about what i mean by that. from a foreign policy perspective, turning the clock back is no solution either. because the threats of the 21st century differs so radically from those of the cold war. so what i argue is that a whole scale reinvention of what we mean by foreign policy is what is required. you might say that we don't need a new prescription for our
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glasses, we need a new eye chart. if we're going to talk about the outsourcing of american power, that immediately brings us to the situation in iraq and afghanistan. which are our first two contractors wars. according to the congressional research service, in 2009, contractors accounted for 48% of the department of defense work force in iraq and 65% in afghanistan. just to give you a sense of contrast, at the height of the vietnam war, contractors accounted for just 13% of our presence on the ground in vietnam. keep in mind those figures i cited for you are for the pentagon. but the pentagon is not the only government agency that's outsourcing. the state department and usaid make extensive use of
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contractors for reconstruction in iraq and afghanistan as well. so both in iraq and afghanistan today, contractors on the ground outnumber american men and women in uniform and this is an unprecedented situation. yet in washington we think of contracting as a tactical issue. in reality, it's become a strategic one. consider this, if i haven't convinced you already, if we take the department of defense and the state department's budget in 2008, we can add up contracts and grants and see what percentage of the budget that amounts to. and when we do what we find is that 82% of the pentagon's budget went out the door in contracts and grants in 2008. 83% of the state department's requested budget in 2008 did the same. so these numbers really mean
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that the core business of both the state department and the pentagon has changed. so that's the landscape. there are both positive and negative aspects to the outsourcing of american power. and i want to start with the positive because i think when you -- it tends to be covered in the news as all these tales of waste, corruption and fraud. and i think what can be lost? is this positive dimension which is important. globalization makes outsourcing more attractive to government but it also expands the possibilities for independent action that has significant foreign policy impact. it's no exaggeration to say that today it's possible for individuals to make their own foreign policy when government falls short. or lacks interest. a big -- a couple of examples of this and there are many, many. one would be sam nunn's nuclear threat initiative.
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anyone familiar with that nuclear threat initiative? it's a great organization. the nuclear threat initiative has successfully intervened abroad to fill a vacuum that would typically have been filled or covered by the u.s. government. in belgrade, for example, they financed the flying of more than 100 pounds of potent nuclear materials to russia for blending down. there were a huge range of bureaucratic obstacles that kept the u.s. government from blending down these materials. nti stepped in and provided $5 million to clean up that nuclear reactor. and it's also pursued similar action in kazakhstan. another example on the nonproliferation issue. warren buffett on his own pledged $25 million to fund a nuclear fuel bank under international supervision if, if the u.s. government matched him.
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you may not have heard of it but the bush administration matched him $25 million. other countries have ponied up and have raised $100 million to make this move toward reality. so that shows some of the difference that just one individual can make in foreign policy terms. that's a new development. second example, kiva which means agreement swahili. kiva uses the power of the internet to connect directly via paypal private citizens who want to lend money to aspiring entrepreneurs in the developing world. so in may 2007, for example, kiva added the first iraqi entrepreneurs to its website. with this disclaimer and i want to read it to you. this entrepreneur is from a volatile region where the
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security situation remains unsettled. lenders to this business should be aware that this loan may represent a higher risk and accept this additional risk in making their loan. despite this warning, all the loans were fully funded within a few hours largely by american citizens who apparently wanted to lend a personal hand to the iraqi reconstruction effort. and there are many other examples of the positive aspects of privatized power. think of the work of the gates foundation, think of the work of the clinton global initiative. what is the grameen bank or the ngo like mothers to mothers who receive 60 to 70% of its budget from the government, through pepfar. all of these have the virtue of a smaller u.s. footprint even though american philanthropy or taxpayer dollars fund the work. so that's the positive. i have to mention the negative
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aspect of the outsourcing of american power as well. and i think the biggest there is what i call laissez-faire outsourcing. laissez-faire outsourcing is what happens when government outsources oversight as well as implementation. it turns that entirely over to the private sector and the biggest most glaring example was the coast guard's deep water program. anybody heard of that, the deep water program? let me bring you up to speed on that just really quickly. this is all floating around out there. it's interesting when you gather it all together you really begin to see some patterns. deep water you a launched in 2002. the most comprehensive in the services history to modernize and update the coast guard's fleet of boats and aircraft. the coast guard did something unprecedented with this program. they delegated overall management of the project to a contractor.
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that is integrated coast guard systems, icgs, which was a joint venture of lockheed martin and northrop grumman. i think we have someone here from northrop if i'm not mistaken and correct me if i get this wrong. they were assigned the task of who should perform the work as well as the task of evaluating itself. not surprisingly integrated coast guard systems chose guess who lockheed martin and northup grummond. the coast guard had fewer operational boats and ships than it had when deep water was first launched and what had been a $17 billion project ballooned up to $24 billion with no end in sight. one former project manager did something i've never seen before. he got so frustrated with his whistle-blowing efforts through official channels that he resorted to posting a series of whistle blower videos on youtube.
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to try to get the word bout the waste and fraud that he saw surrounding him. so that's laissez-faire outsourcing. now, as you might imagine it has some pretty serious consequences and i think there are three we really need to hit on here. the first big consequence is really what i would describe as accountability and oversight crisis of unprecedented proportions. the seriousness of the accountability challenge is reflected in disturbing war stories from iraq. there were over 300 reported cases of contracting mistakes or abuses in iraq from 2003 to 2007. yet, there's not been a single distance to date of anyone being fired or denied promotion in connection with those cases. the pentagon in the "new york times" has publicly acknowledged that $8.2 billion, $8.2 billion of taxpayer money flowed through
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contracts into iraq, some in stacks or pallets of cash without appropriate record-keeping or oversight. just to give you an example, and this is again, you know, confirmed. 68.2 million went to the united kingdom. $45.3 million to poplanned and $21.3 million to korea yet pentagon auditors were unable to determine why the payments were made. second negative consequence of laissez-faire outsourcing is what i would describe broadly as an overly ambitious international agenda. this is something we've only just begun to start talking about but it deserves enunciation that contractors facilitate overextension. they allow us to throw money at problems without really suffering as you would if you had to institute a draft to execute these wars which is what
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we had to do if we didn't rely on contractors. finally, i think one of the biggest and most pernicious consequences of these practices is what i would call a lost sense of government purpose. of those things that only government can do well. this has a highly demoralizing impact on people who work in government. whose the real action flowing out the door but i think it also leaves us paralyzed in the face of some of our biggest challenges today like healthcare, like the financial crisis, reform of the financial system because there's a lost sense of those things that only government can do. which is only government can uphold the public interest, the private sector will not do that. it's not its job. add these three things up with respect to foreign policy and what you wind up with is i would call a militarized foreign policy.
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that's what our addiction to outsourcing has facilitated. what do i mean by that? i simply mean the pentagon has become the go-to institution for getting anything you want done. under both the clinton and the bush administration. it has the biggest budget. and since many of the things the pentagon has asked to do were beyond its standard purview, guess what it did? it contracted out. if you don't know how to do something, hire it out. that's what the pentagon has done. in the process dod has become contracting central. i think dod's faithful execution of government wishes is admirable but just because the pentagon is able to do something doesn't mean that it should do be doing it. and i would submit that promoting american values through the u.s. military overseas, the u.s. military being a massive symbol of coercion rather than choice usually undercuts the very
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values we seek to promote. and i think -- i would just offer you as exhibit a afghanistan and the cost of reconstruction there today. that's a pretty depressing picture. in my book i didn't want to cite to problems i want to talk about solutions. in my last chapter in my book is called a post-industrial foreign policy which i think is what we need. i'll throw out three planks. the biggest thing we need to do is pretty obvious. we need to demilitarize foreign policy and i think we're in the process of doing just that. here i'm not just only talking reallocation sources. we need smart sourcing not insourcing. and here i would focus on two components.
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first we need to acknowledge the centrality of contracting in our foreign policy. that's step 1. and then once we've done that, we need to recruit, train, and retain a work force that perhaps government hasn't seen before. it's going to be a work force of what i would call 21st century network managers who can ensure quality work at all stages of a given project and manage the relationships across the public/private divide. we don't of that today and we desperately need it. i think another thing we can do and this is a debate that's ongoing. there will be hearings in the senate tomorrow is we can talk about what things we might have outsourced that never should have been outsourced. and here i would point to the use of armed contractors in iraq particularly guarding our embassies. there have been a number of scandals surrounding these
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contractors particularly in afghanistan particularly some not speaking english which is an important component of ensuring the american security of the american compound. but i think the biggest reason that using armed contractors in war zones is a bad idea is that it blurs the line between legitimate and the illegitimate use of force. and that's precisely what terrorists want. they seek to blur the line between legitimate and illegitimate force. they say we have the right to use force just like the state can use force. why should we give them what they want? third plank of a post-industrial foreign policy if you will would be to embrace radical transparency. in theory the information age has made transparency easy. and there are all sorts of efforts to do just that.
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you can simply post all the relevant contracts on a user-friendly website and will provide a clear idea of how to use that. senator obama was responsible for passing legislation that created and you can go there and check it out. there's a new one for the stimulus package because much of that is contracts, too. where you can track that. that's a step in the right direction. there's lots more work that needs to be done there. i think the obama administration sees this clearly because one of the first things the president did on march 4th, 2009, is issued a presidential memorandum that called for a government wide review of contracting. practices across the agencies. there's an interim report in july and the final report is due any day now.
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and that's what some of the hearings in the senate tomorrow is about. we'll hopefully be hearing more from the white house on how to move forward. on this issue. but i would just point out to you here that sunlight always challenges the powers that be. so this will be a long struggle. but i think that's where the positive aspects of the privatization of american power give us cause for hope. when we look at foreign policy today as it really is, we see that there are plenty of things we can do even when government falls short. strategies that can be pursued by the general public over the heads of both business and government. when you can make your own foreign policy, individuals matter. and so organizations like nafsa and the women's foreign policy group matter. in conclusion, the outsourcing of american power ultimately means we need a brand-new template for thinking about how government and the private
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sector should interact in the digital age. the key players, however, are not washington and wall street. but each and every one of us. i think i'll stop there. and see what sort of questions you have. i welcome them. thank you for your attention. >> thank you very much. [applause] >> so we'll open it up to q & a. and i am going to take the moderator's prerogative to ask the first question following up on what you were just talking about. since outsourcing and the public/private partnerships are here to stay, can you give us a little more sense of how you envision how things are accountable and transparent. you gave a few examples and efficient. and also you talked about attracting new talent to government. in the most practical sense contractor firms pay so much
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more for all the different things, services, that they offer. so how can the government compete with this? >> she asked the toughest question first. [laughter] >> and you conflated two but let me take them apart and maybe deal with the easier one first. which is how can we increase transparency? well, i think we're in the process of doing that under the obama administration. much of the information on contracts is fully available on the web both for the stimulus package but also -- but not for the t.a.r.p. not for the t.a.r.p. that's another matter. but for the stimulus package and for contracting across federal agencies. you really can go on this website and see where we're spending the money. there's room for improvement and greater details. they were supposed to have the information on subcontracting available by january 2009. if you go there today you're going to see a site that's under reconstruction. it's important to get that done
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because every contract prompts a chain of subcontracts which has the net effect of more or less renders governance wholly opaque. so lots of work to be done there but a step in the right direction. you're absolutely right. that this is a vicious circle. you've got this revolving door between business and government that needs to not be closed but to be monitored more closely and the obama administration took some positive steps in that direction, i think, with some difficulties by limiting -- making it impossible for someone who leaves the administration to come back and lobby, lobby that same administration. that seems to me pretty straight forward but it still leaves you with a larger question how do you attract the best and brightest to the public service? that's the $64 million question and i think one thing we can do is just by making the people who are in charge of overseeing this outflow of funds give their positions greater prestige and acknowledge their strategic
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dimension. right now it's seen as something as peripheral. something as filling out forms triples form. when you talk about reform people want to pull out a pillow and go to sleep. but we can't go to sleep because that's the business of government today is largely in these flows of funds out to the private sector. we need to see that they are put to better use and getting the best people in government is key. >> one more question before i open it up. i'd like -- there's lots of talk about getting more civilian control back in terms of running foreign policy. and i'd like to get your thoughts on this because you talked very much about the militarization of foreign policy. so how does one flowed >> -- proceed. >> that's a big question and we have a civilian surge going on in afghanistan where there's a heroic effort on the part of
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state department to fill those civilian positions. anybody applied for a federal government job recently? did that take a long time? you see part of the problem. it might be really a lot easier to get right down to work on serious issues if you work for a contractor rather than the u.s. government. so there are things we can fix in the hiring practices that are important. but there's a whole larger question of maybe i'll put that aside but the larger question is what we're attempting to accomplish in these places. and what i would throw out there is whether we have -- we are overly ambitious in what we are attempting to do. that is things that might have worked in 1945 in a radically transformed environment will probably turn out very differently in 2009. i can say more about that if anybody is interested. >> how do you see -- and please get -- >> can you hear us okay? everybody hear us? >> this is my last question.
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[laughter] >> and this is the public/private partnership. how do you see the partnership between the public and the ngo sector in terms of getting control back and also implementing more civilian control things? >> great. it's a great question, too. and we'll throw this out here and this takes us to the development realm. most of you are probably aware usaid has more or less become a contracting agency. the question of its future is before us. i think these sorts of issues my book addresses are very relevant to that debate but i myself are very excited about the potential of government working in partnership with ngos to advance development. i sometimes wonder if we are operating with an antiquated notion of development. that is if we accept the premise
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that development -- of development as freedom that means about giving people in countries -- it means giving people in countries around the globe the chance to choose their own destinies. it often means empowering women to get the job done. and i think in many ways direct government to government assistance in front patriarchal societies is precisely where we don't want to be. so i'm very excited about some of the more innovative approaches to development that were pursued under the bush administration. particularly, the millennium challenge corporation whose future, too, is -- i don't want to say uncertain but is in the process of being reexamined. so big set of questions on the table. it's an exciting time to think about foreign policy. >> okay. so questions from the audience. if you could just stand and please identify yourself. keep your questions brief.
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first here, there, and over here. do you mind taking a few questions here. >> i'll write then do you mean to so i don't forget anybody. >> i seem to be the only person from a usaid contracting organization. >> who are you with? >> i don't know if that's true? well, we're only basically usaid-funded international resources group. >> 100% of your budget? >> about 95%. >> see. [laughter] >> but i would say that, you know, if usaid beefed up, it would be exactly the same people. they'd just -- and we pay -- we are limited to government salaries. we cannot -- people who go on projects, there's this misconception that we pay people $200,000. you can't do that. usaid's top salary is $162 this year. >> uh-huh. >> and it's less depending on
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your years of experience. also, that usaid projects tend to come from the missions overseas where state and development -- dod projects tend to come from washington. and so there is a big difference between those because the oversight is much different in aid than dod. we're actually acquired by a dod kind of company and we're discovering just -- they're actually the opposite. >> uh-huh. >> but the real issue is speed as you say. and i think that's the real issue that we all have to think about is that the real challenge of development right now is speed. it's post-conflict stabilization. anybody who's applied to usaid knows it takes eight months at least to get -- we can get people there in two weeks. three weeks maybe. so you can't compete with that yet.
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>> okay. the gentleman in the back. if you would please identify yourself. >> my name is george. i don't work for the government. [laughter] >> but i want you to talk about two things. state capture of civil society. i did a lot of work in georgia where i'm from and all of the ngos in georgia are funded by foreign aid. and they are captured by foreign governments but in d.c. a lot of ngos are funded by the government and they are captured by the state. it's a problem for the government that things don't get done but it's also the civil society cannot serve as a check in the state. they are independent on the state and the second thing is -- and this ties -- i don't want to call it corruption in all of the state. i agree as a consequence it was great thing but they did their
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analysis and they did work grants of money and then georgia add revolution. -- had a revolution. and secretary powell said you have to give money to georgia. you got to give money to georgia you also have to give money to another. both countries were held into mcc qualifications not only on paper in getting money. if you have countries like that are put into this as well. and so we destroy the whole concept of we're going to be very strict and made mcc a second usaid. and that's another element that i wish you could talk about. >> let's take your question here, please. >> i'm from george washington university. i was wondering if there are any other countries that are dealing well with outsourcing? i wonder if there are any practices that we can learn from. i don't know what the u.k. is doing, for example.
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>> tug. -- uh-huh. >> okay, one more question, please. >> kate thompson. we're a usaid contractor as well as a contractor for a lot of other things. and i wanted to ask you to comment on this. you said that there are certain things that only government dock. and i would say to you that it does -- government cannot do and has proven that it cannot rebuild countries. >> uh-huh. >> and it has proven that it can't do other things in the development arena as well as lawyers and bankers and other -- and doctors and other people who you only draw from the private sector. >> uh-huh. >> i think the last statistic i saw about usaid if they beefed up to provide all the services they currently contract the organization would be over 100,000 people. >> uh-huh. >> i'm not sure that that that's the best and highest use of our taxpayer dollar. and i think outsourcing and using other resources in the private sector is a good thing.
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how it's done, how it's managed and how accountable they are is an area that i think is open for question about how we can do that better? >> and i would agree with you on that. is that enough? i promise not to be long-winded. i'll whip through them in reverse order. you point out government cannot rebuild countries and do reclubbing it might be an open question whether contractors can do that either. but but your point is well-taken. again, i'm very excited about the possibilities for outsourcing and contracting in the development realm provided we get the oversight issue right. as far as -- the question was can we learn from others? you know, are there best practices where we can learn lessons from them? here i think we're in uncharted
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territory because nobody embraces market. we're an outlier. systemic research but everything i know tells me that there's no other country on the planet that conducts its governance quite like we do and it might have something to do with us being one of the few developed countries in the world -- the only actually who don't have healthcare for all citizens. so we're an outlier. we're not going to learn from others but i do think others are looking to us in how we deal with these as they move forward. the example we are setting for the world with some of our practices. i hope that answers your question. second question, the gentleman knows a lot about georgia. i do not dispute that it is really fascinating when you talk about these issues -- i gave a talk at the council on foreign relations last week where
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someone was a russian specialist raised this very point of the state capture of civil society and the problems that might represent. i think when you're dealing with georgia, a developing democracy, and the united states you have two very different kettles of fish in terms of flow of information, freedom of the press and all of these other things. so it's less of a dangerous situation here which is why i think there's potential to harness -- harness outsourcing and make it work for us. you would have a very different situation in a lot of other countries in the world. finally, with respect to the first question. i just wanted -- where did you go? there you are. yeah, just to point out one thing. you know, we're talking about the pentagon in development. that's a whole new thing. for the department of defense to consider development part of its purview. i would just ask ourselves whether that really makes good strategic sense.
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i think it's not so smart. that's my own personal opinion. i can go into that more if you want later. [inaudible] >> i'm not sure. but i do see those two wars as anomalies. we really to have make a distinction between wartime contracting and peacetime contracting. i think wartime contracting led us into some very unfortunate directions. >> okay. the woman -- okay, yes, here, here and anyone else? okay. please. [inaudible] >> this is kind of the flip side of the question. one of the things for which the u.s. military has been famous for is how good its logistics are and how then how at least the second world war and at least through my lifetime you
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heard constantly about retired military going into the private sector because they were the logistics guys. and my question is, what possible effect is there on the military when that expertise is nowfi longer conducted within t pentagon but by the private sector. >> i have no affiliation 'cause i'm still waiting for usa jobs to get back with me. [laughter] >> but i wanted to ask a two-part question. one is -- i was an investment banker for merrill lynch in asia so i covered indonesia, malaysia and thailand. and i saw a huge amount of benefit come to companies who had to access the international capital markets. they had to meet u.s. investment standards and they had to talk to u.s. investors even if the government wasn't able to give
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the rule of law security that the investors were looking for, the companies were often able to address those concerns. i wanted to know if you thought the private sector did have a role in sort of development which seemed to be sort of looking at more, you know, quasi ngos -- >> oh, yeah. >> i wonder if the private sector of the whole of the government couldn't -- [inaudible] >> in my very long search to find a federal job, i find that there's two things. one is, i feel that a lot of people in government are sort of actually very negative on private sector experience and, you know, i feel that being a private sector and working in these places would be useful for usaid or the state department because i have lived and worked in all these place bus they seem to be very wary of private sector and most people have advised me go work for a contracting firm and you'll get hired right away. but to get hired is much harder and takes a lot longer.
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i wonder if you could comment sort of on that dynamic. >> uh-huh >> any other questions. okay. >> your name, please >> i'm donna. i'm with commission of wartime contracting. >> oh, hi. [laughter] >> i'm very anxious to read your book. one, what positions or functions do you think should not be contracted? and on this usaid ability to bring in people in quickly, they have a special kind of contract where they have -- i'm sorry i don't know who the contractor is, but they have a contractor whose sole job is to recruit and have a pool of people that they can bring in very quickly which allows them to bring in people very, very quickly and not take as long as it takes for all
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these other agencies and that seems to work very well for them. they also can have what they call personal services contracts which makes something like this young woman over here be able to feel like she's part of them. do you think that's something that would work other places too? is that a good idea or is usaid so special that -- [inaudible] >> what was the example. i'm not sure i understood it. >> they have a contract with a company who serves as the recruiter for them and has a whole list of people that are ready to come to work or list they can draw from to be able to fill requirements for contractors for usaid. that's why they can bring in people very, very quickly that are qualified. >> you might be talking about one of our contracts, actually.
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[laughter] >> they don't -- they only are the recruiter only. they can't fill jobs themselves. and then also they have a special -- it's called personal services contracts, which generally is something that agencies are not supposed to do. and that means somebody comes in and works side-by-side just like they are another staff person. and usaid can do that. so that's kind of two different -- two different things that they have that makes them be able to break away the way they do. [inaudible] >> yep. yeah. that's a technical question. i would to have look at it more closely but the one thing that gives me pause is the low morale that i think is present at usaid today.
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it might not be for that reason but i guess i would just use it to enunciate a more general point i have made. is that when you are contracting everything out, it can make the people who aren't contractors feel like chop liver. this is applies not just in government but in business everywhere. i didn't need to tell you. that's an effect that's not often taken into account. and we need to be more cognizant of that. as far as what shouldn't be contracted out, my big example would be armed contractors in war zones. that to me is a no-brainer and i would work to beef up diplomatic security services immediately. the previous question -- i'm trying to deal with all these. and i apologize. i thought they were all great questions. if i missed something, please don't take it personally. but i believe it was your question talking about private sector experience. and i wanted to make a point that maybe -- a make in my book that got lost in my remarks. when i talk about the private sector, i am definitely, definitely talking about both
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for-profit and not-for-profit. i've seen an explosion in both realms and indeed when we talk about development, market solutions and people with market expert -- you know, expertise from the private sector often have vast amounts to contribute. some of the most impressive workers and ngos that i have met have had extensive experience in the private sector so there's definitely a role for the private sector to play for-profit as well as the ngo community. and i can't read my writing now but i guess what i would just say here is that lest i be misunderstood i'm -- i am definitely not antiprivate sector, antimarket. in fact, i am very much convinced that market values or bourgeois values are the emancipation of women.
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women today have equal footing in society in part because those values held sway. we can have a discussion about that point but i would not underestimate the power of a capitalist logic to in a sense invite people of every race, creed, ethnicity and gender and see what they can do and be measured by results not by some artificial system of exclusion. so whatever i'm saying about the excesses in the contracting community i would not want to undercut that very positive force. dod logistics. and whether that has a negative -- i'm not sure i completely understood your question. but whether it has a negative impact on -- [inaudible] >> contracting out the logistics to a greater or lesser degree it has an effect on the logistic expertise remaining within the department of defense.
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whether they are enable now to train their own people. >> well, i think that train has left the station. in a sense. it really has. and, you know, if you look at companies -- somebody from kbr is here, aren't they? anyway, companies like kellogg, brown and root are involved in feeding and logistical aspects have done work and i don't think we should stop that sort of outsourcing. i guess, what i would point out is that the logistical dimension of what the department of defense does with the sorts of weapon systems we're deploying absolutely requires a contract presence. in other words, you couldn't possibly have the expertise
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in-house to repair and use and maintain the 21st century state-of-the-art forestructure that we have. so that train has left the station. >> okay. last question. >> sally. i wonder if you have any thoughts about whether the shift that you're suggesting into a 21st century government and its relationships with the ngo and the private sector has any implications for some of the changes that we've seen in the relationship between political appointees in government and career staff in government particularly senior career staff? >> whether contracting has an impact on it? >> there's been a lot of changes
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in the relationship between political appointees and senior government employees over the cause of contracting and a lot of other things. and i just wonder whether you see the changes that you would look for reshaping that in what might be a more positive direction. >> oh, they definitely would reshape it in a more positive direction because the people managing these contractors would hopefully not be coming and going from government would be moving across different sectors of government because obviously to manage these partnerships well you can't just be an expert in one area. you would want to see more rotation throughout government understanding the different components and sectors. and i think that would provide a much more robust role for civilian -- the civilian work force. >> well, thank you very much, professor stanger. >> sure, my pleasure. >> it was a wonderful presentation. [applause] >> thank you all for coming and for your good questions.
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and she will now sign books. we hope that you will get them. >> thanks so much. >> thanks a lot. [inaudible conversations] >> allison stanger is an international politics and economics professor at middlebury college. to find out more, visit and search her name. ♪ >> did you know you can view book tv programs online? go to type the name of the author, book or subject into the search area in the upper left-hand corner of the page. select the watch link. now you can view the entire program. you might also explore the
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recently on book tv box or the featured programs box to find and view recent and featured programs. ♪ [inaudible] [inaudible]
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[inaudible] [inaudible] >> i'm very grateful to be here. i want to thank everyone in the history department here at carnegie mellon especially leasy and joe for inviting me and ebony graham and gail for so efficiently organizing this event. and thank you all for joining me to hear a bit about elizabeth cady stanton's life and ideas. i want to talk about why stanton loomed so large in american history, why she remains so complicated and infuriating a figure.
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and at least why the time i spent writing her biography was such romping fun. this last i admit took me by surprise. i'm a historian who has written about the social and intellectual history of 19th century women focusing especially on the connections between ordinary women's -- ordinary's people's material lives and the emergence of new ideas. as a biographer i have to admit i'm pretty much an imposter. i didn't read biographies or like them much until i found myself writing one. i know the genre appeals to american readers more than any other form of history but that appeal remains a mystery to me since i find so few individuals whose daily lives and countless dinner parties i want to read about. i would be much more bored reading about my own life than i am reading it. but the prospect of taking on this particular biography was enticing. there is simply no one else like elizabeth cady stanton. she belongs by any measure in
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the pantheon of the people who shape this nation. as the founding philosopher of the women's rights she was in a generation that was packed with intellectuals. she was the guiding forth behind the 1848 seneca falls which any textbook will tell you was the first convention to demand women's legal, moral and political rights including the right to vote. it was at this convention that stanton famously declared that all men and women are created equal. a phrase that both captured and enraged americans who were still grappling with the implications of their revolutionary heritage. she was brilliant, charming and charismatic as well as self-righteous, intimidating and astonishingly self-confident. the mother of seven children, an advocate of liberalized divorce laws and a skeptic about religion she comes across through her 87 years as larger than life. a woman driven by her equipment
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to rouse herself and everyone else to rethink and remake women's status in politics, law, religion and marriage. at the same time, she made comments so racist that they can leave us breathless and historians still argue about their significance. in spite of or because of all of this, there hadn't been a serious biography in nearly 30 years and each of these would be a perfectly good reason to take her on. but stanton's importance to women's rights and the contradictions of her thought and personality were not why i wrote this book why i found wrestling with her life and legacy so compelling. i wrote it because i have been arguing with the woman about one thing or another for my entire adult life. there were a few people i worship in my youth but it's stanton i fight with. i don't identify with her. or revere her or hate her. i don't want to celebrate her every utterance or to rat her out. . ..
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to support lincoln for reelection in 1864. in her day she articulated her grandest ideals and political philosophy and it echoed her ongoing among us. over the years i have changed my views in many of our disputes while stanton remained much the same. when we argue she always thinks she is right. on the other hand i get the last word. the pure pleasure of grappling
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with stanton i feel a disconnected writing this biography. when i tell his story and friends about the project they grin or smirked. before i had written a single page some of my friends were inlaid either because they thought all biographies esteem their subject too highly or they feared i would be too critical. some just think unspent far too much time with a woman they consider hopelessly elitist, narrow minded racist and a boring. to put it bluntly yesterday's news. liberty, independent, all those once radical notions that academic long ago dissected because -- and dismissed but non historians response to hearing about this biography offered a greater challenge, one that keeps on ticking you things. the first kind of educated, well read american decided her name was an utterly blank stare. i got flustered.
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i have seen that look so often that i have come to expect it. the question who was chief underscores the scholarly discussions especially when they concern women. it also highlights that the once radical idea that 888-825-5225 promoted so passionately in her own time are utterly commonplace in our. try getting young women, some of them probably in this room to defend keeping women because they are women out of colleges or professions, trapped in hateful marriages, unable to earn or inherit or control money and voting and holding office. for every american alive today these are ordinary common sense ideas. just after i typed that sentence my daughter called from college to say she had gone to get an coulter's book and she had
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declared herself against women's suffrage. still, still, these ideas are so mainstream, sewn on negotiable as to an astonishing degree because of elizabeth cady stanton's life work. let me say a lid -- a little bit about elizabeth cady stanton, the story she told about herself and something about the day that still swirl about her leaving yourself the controversy provoked in writing the women's bible and advocating poetry and strolling down the streets of seneca falls in bloomers. elizabeth cady stanton was born in johnstown, new york, in 1815. her father who became a judge was property, he of quite a lot of land and several slaves people and little well-connected and the conservative especially as his daughter recalled it, on matters of gender. elizabeth cady stanton's most
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often repeated story was a boisterous and rebellious little girl, 11 years old whose only living brother had just died. distraught readers knew she crawled into her father's lap to get comfort but her father put his arm around her, my daughter, i wish you were a boy. the sting of a father's remark lingered. every woman who has felt the slyke of being fought less promising than her brother can relate to the insult. elizabeth cady stanton as it turned out had more than enough reserves of self-esteem to survive this and then never forgot it. she put her self-confidence to work to make her father happy by being all a son could have been. but the insults of her exclusion lingered. when the boy she had surpassed at the local school left for union college the young elizabeth's mortification knew no bounds. if elizabeth cady stanton had not turned that exclusion into a philosophy of women's right we might simply shrug at hurt
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teenage self absorption. but the morals she took from her childhood affronts was the germ of something enormous. her recognition that society's preference for boys or girls lives, limited their opportunities and were used to justify the denial of their rights. denial of opportunity was not the only salient piece of elizabeth cady stanton's story although she received the best education available at the female seminary. her formative experiences were at the law library where she developed an acute sense of the power of law to make and remake people's status. she loved arguing with law students who wandered through had teased her about women's support net standing under the law. she did not, as many would in those years, dow for a moment that politics and the law were the most efficient ways to make change but popular view that religious conversion was the
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surest route to social protection never swept her up as it did much of her generation. it was no major step for elizabeth cady stanton to decide that the vote itself was an exceptional market of women's subordination to men. in 1848 she declared women's right to vote a central and logical demand of the age. it is hard to imagine how scary this was and later i have an exercise to try to get us to imagine how scary it was but to many in her century and in her own family, elizabeth cady stanton was a dangerous radical whose ideas would turn the world on its years. this opposition to the logic of women's political and civil rights made sense in the moral universe -- mental universe of that time and place. american political fought contained an egalitarian tradition that emphasized equality under the law and a commitment to hierarchy's based on race, gender and religion.
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in elizabeth cady stanton's d. a. the prevailing ideology place protestant women in a private fear of piety, domesticity and motherhood and held that their duties were best expressed in religion, not the political realm. the safety of the republic, many declared, was in women's moral influence over the poor, before and and the fallen. in a political culture that claimed men acquired their rights through a political contract and women gained the there's by virtue of marriage and christianity, elizabeth cady stanton's debuts threaten the very stronghold of manhood and the stability of a nation. but if it made sense to claim that women's rights was against god and nature it was becoming somewhat more difficult to argue against women's right in lights of the commitment to justice and equality under the law. for nearly every american alive
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today, women's rights including the right to vote are ordinary common sense. large part this is because of stanton's in sight. granting those rights would be the fulfillment of the nation's relative -- lower illusionary values. and an's demand for women's average meshed perfectly with the nation's liberal ideal and she knew it. the men we call the founding founders, she took the simple truth that women had denied their inalienable rights and will fit into a philosophy that changed the world. the promise of the american revolution, she insisted, remained unfulfilled so long as women were treated in the loss solely as wives, mothers and dependents and morally speaking as slaves. these ideas were threatening for the same reason they now seem -- they seem so rational, so patriotic peoples' though american. the notion that women be treated
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as individuals with the same rights as men is part of the very air we breathe. in her time and place, the documents they produced, the seneca falls declaration of sentiments was stunning. a foundational test american democratic ideals. its language, careful and deliberate, made an impossible to ignore. the declaration of sentiments will sound familiar to everyone here. we hold these truths to be self-evident, she read aloud, that all men and women are created equal. but it was not under the original, but displayed spectacular breadth of thought and imagination echoing and admiring the past as it demanded a strikingly different future. by adopting the language of the most sacred text, the revolution left unfinished business, complemented the founders as a
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challenge their heirs. the history of mankind is a history of justification, part of man toward woman. having the establishment of absolute tyranny. women's rights fit squarely equality and rebellion. a heritage that belonged to women. women's secondary status crushed, constrained and the little women's pursuit of happiness itself. all this talk about women as independent, supporters as well as appalled opponents, breathless. point only sputter incoherently without rage. this may sound familiar, rather than discuss the issue at hand they resorted to emotional outbursts against the women's marriage prospects.
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stanton's words, if we listen closely, can leave us astonished by how radical and deeply rooted in the nation's soil on equal rights, imperfect the fulfiled. they remind us because we can forget, the radical individual rights including the right to vote. she never focused on one idea. susan b. anthony came to believe winning the vote was the most essential thing they needed to do. she was brilliant. these liberal views of women's status through radical fatigue of religious teachings. we live in a world that is deeply gendered with women disproportionately represented among the pour, the illiterate, victimized and powerless but we cannot any of us imagine our lives without the work that
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elizabeth cady stanton did. but elizabeth cady stanton's legacy is more complicated than that might suggest. no one who wants to celebrate elizabeth cady stanton's contributions to the expansion of american liberty will enjoy my book. an ugly streak of elitism and racism runs through her writing and speaking becoming most apparent in the post civil war debate about black men's suffrage. these debates would still raise historians's hackles, complement the women's movement's victories in ways americans have not fully addressed. for feminist theorists they show the underside of a feminism based entirely, worship fully on individualism, which ignores the group and community interests that were also at stake. for all of us they challenge our best hopes that our heroes and heroines were always right and their admirable positions always outweigh or make revealed their
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failings. elizabeth cady stanton considered herself on the radical cutting edge of american society. the first to imagine women's rights and the first consistent supporter of their complete legal and political equality but ideas never emerge in a vacuum and it is important to remember that elizabeth cady stanton's world was people by reformers of many times. knew and respected and work out their bravest ideas in collaboration with one another, not one person who attended the convention in seneca falls was hearing about women's rights for the first time. by the 1840s, newspaper ministers and educators and reformers had been debating the issue of women's rights for years and some communities buzzed with the talk. the conversation was most contentious in the anti slavery movement and it was abolitionist's, women and men both who gathered to declare themselves in favor of the complete civil and political equality of women. textbooks and tributes to
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beating american women invariably described elizabeth cady stanton as a devoted abolitionist and it is certainly true that that tiny community provided the inspiration and support that helped launch her career. still, the place of anti slavery in her life was more complicated and the path she took from that movement to women's rights distanced her from her co-workers. first it was simple. in the 1830s, elizabeth cady stanton was argumentative and was introduced to abolitionism and the noted anti slavery electorate henry brewster stanton at the home of her husband garrett smith. the personal and political converged, house she thrilled to hear him talk about the evils of slavery. after a stormy flirtation the two married and headed for the world and i slavery convention in london were the young mrs. stanton was drawn to an impressive community of pro women's rights abolitionists'
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including the quaker leader. that trip was as she later told a story, the major event in her political education. elizabeth cady stanton soaked up wearing like a sponge, philly lay her experience in a school of abolitionism made plausible her rocketing analysis and career. but elizabeth cady stanton, who moved in abolitionists' circles, attended anti slavery lectures and counted famous abolitionist among her friends was more a fellow travelers and a convert. what she loved about the movement was -- and the excitement -- she loved the talk and the excitement of being at the center of the action but in comes off as an observer. i attend all types of meetings and lectures, she wrote. i consider myself in a moral museum. i find that this affords many curiosities in her way as does the british museum. she thrived in the company of
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the strong minded women and silver tongued lecturers she found. shea brief in their passion and oratory but was never one of them and she knew it. you are such a crotchety bunch, she once said. all other men would be cause for rejoicing, you held them together. how is it now? i desire to know, she wrote, as i am one of you, i wish to know what is most becoming one of the order. unlike other abolitionists of her generation, she did not take risks the purchase will sacrifice well for comfort, or even have urgent concern for those who were enslaved. on the contrary she remained remarkably calm in the face of the brutality of slavery and racism. in most descriptions of her life including the ones she told, three decades of anti slavery struggle served mostly as backdrop, as an important essential womens lesson in
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degradation and rights. seneca falls offered stanton a cause about which she felt passionate and plunged in happily. lee and impatient expecting everyone else to catch on. positive that it was because other abolitionist women were -- they did not share her single-minded focus on women's rights. some folks will scold me for suggesting stanton wasn't truly an abolitionist so let me be clear. elizabeth cady stanton lived amidst a radical community of abolitionists and of course she opposed slavery. what she did was most of her associates, she never saw slavery or racism as the fissures in american society that demanded her sustained attention. it offered her an education and constituency, her zeal for abolitionism itself was restrained. she was rarely tormented by
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slavery's hideous mess or outraged by its resilience. even during her visit to london in 1840 she struck antislavery leaders as a fearless woman who as william lloyd garrison put it, a embraced women's rights with all her soul. eight years later she remained aloof enough from anti slavery activism to devote her intellectual passion to an analysis of women's status including their hopelessness as essential problems for american democracy leader told me that what i call stand alone feminism. other abolitionists, including those who agreed that women had been unfairly, outrageously denied their rights believe the primary obligation was ending slavery. and after the civil war and shoring african-americans had the means to protect their newly gained rights. it seems to be a more nuanced
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understanding of elizabeth cady stanton's tepid anti slavery convictions explain the choices she made after the civil war. those of you familiar with the debates of other reconstruction amendments to the constitution will recall that radical difference about whether to support a fifteenth amendment that granted voting rights to black men or hold out for an amendment that protected women's rights as well. without going into much of a history lecture this fall of the fourteenth amendment back for the first time. put the word mail in the u.s. constitution. women's rights supporters were already alert to the compromises that were on the table. the conflict, as they cited, as many historians have agreed, was between their own principled commitment to universal rights and their colleagues's apparent selling out to political party that needed only the votes of men. elizabeth cady stanton's rhetoric on behalf of those universal rights sounded wonderful and many of us will
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sympathize with her sense of betrayal and abandonment especially since with 20/20 hindsight we know how long it would take for a constitutional amendment protecting the women's rights to vote would have. some said this is not the time for women to make the demand, this is the negro's's hour. no, this is the nation's hour. this is the hour to settle one of the rights of the citizens of the republic. stanton was an absolutist who preferred the brilliant simplicity of lofty ideals and her stance in favor of universal suffrage. her insistence that no one's liberation take priority over anyone else's was compelling. she and her friend susan b. anthony declared themselves the true radicals who learned the lessons of anti slavery, that all compromise of principle was dangerous. what they insisted was simple and pure, to ensure that as they put it, women and negros are no longer known in law as
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constitution but will be buried under the citizen. this was powerful stuff which than expected as a moral imperative with no thinking person could disagree. but thinking people did disagree. the price of a woman to vote is at stake in my judgment as that of man, frederick douglass said, and i'm willing at any time to hold both hands in favor of this right. what douglas argued in the face of mounting racist violence in the south and a republican party only weakly committed to african-american rights was the crisis faced by the black community was upstream. i will quote him at length. i do not see how anyone could pretend that there is the same urgency in getting the ballot to a woman as a negro. stanton refused to acknowledge his rhetoric was compelling and chilling and logic compelling. when women, because they are
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women, are hunted down through the cities of new york and new orleans, when they are dragged from their houses and hung up on lampposts, when their children are torn from their arms and their brains-doubt on the pavement, when their objective and salt and outrage at every turn, when they are in danger of having their homes burned down over their heads, when their children and not allowed to enter school, then they will have an urgency to obtain the ballot equal to our own. unable or unwilling to hear this argumented and feeling betrayed by her friends who one by one seemed prepared to trade away women's rights, stanton stuck to the lofty rhetoric of universal justice. instead, fired up with indignation and in salt and to the dismay of her friends and allies she let loose an extraordinarily racist remark to the effect that educated white women were more fit to phone that recently it emancipated african-americans. protected by the thirteenth amendment political of a black
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man is declared free but, quote, as a celestial gate to civil-rights it is slowly opening on its hinges, it becomes a serious question whether the representative women of the nation had better stand aside and walking to the kingdom first. as for black women she said their emancipation is another form of slavery, worse than what they had endorsed under white slaveholders. it is better inexplicably to be the slave of an educated white man than the greatest ignorant black woman. asked straight out she was willing to have a colored man and franchise before the woman she answered no. i would not trust him with all my rights. d. > depressed himself he would be more despotic with the governing power than even our saxon rulers are. furious at friends who agreed to -- to gain the vote for black men she turned the full force of her anger and resentment, closed and her identification as a true
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and virtuous american on black men themselves. to elizabeth cady stanton, the battle over the fifteenth amendment was a battle between the sexes in which all men had joined forces to establish an aristocracy. at the same time she claimed there were better and worse orders of men who. is a woman find it hard to bear the effective laws of a few, what may she not be called to and or when all the lower orders and foreigners legislate for her and her daughters? if such men were lifted politically speaking to an equal level, cheese at, woman touches the lowest depths of her political degradation. for american women and wealth, education and refinement would be ruled by these lower orders with their low ideas of womanhood. stanton remained oblivious to the herd in her friend's words when he objected to her
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employment of certain names like the gardener and the daughters of jefferson and washington and all the rest that i cannot coincide with. there was more at stake here than figures of speech. it was not that stanton was more than ordinary -- a comparison often made in her defense but her racism was within her activist community intolerable and hurtful. to universal rights, essentially on the basis of the priority of rights, she did damage to her friendships, her movement, her claims for the purest radicalism and her legacy of feminism itself. the principal consistency can be thrilling and sternly her fiery words on behalf of women's rights offered stunning moments of political absolutism in the american political tradition. in real life there were choices to be made and they were rarely
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easy or obvious as she implied. many of us recognize the quandary. the delicate balance between principle and compromise, long-term vision and short term crisis management, thinking globally and acting locally. for stanton, abolitionism and emancipation were preludes. slavery a metaphor of the door that reformers pushed open to introduce the world to the cause of women's liberty. the consequences of african-american emancipation were not to stand in the central crisis to her generation and her country. she insisted that with the end slavery the negro question was over. the curtain has fallen on the last act, she wrote in 1868. the lights are extinguished and the audience done to their homes. in the face of the racial violence of the postwar period, stanton, did not lose much
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sleep. her elitism did not fade with reconstruction. disappointing historians and admirers who wish it had been a temporary lapse of judgment. outraged that women were excluded from rights granted to less worthy men she supported an educational requirement for suffrage. raising foreigners, quote, above the most intelligent and highly educated women frigid native-born americans, was the most bitter drop in the greek that we are allowed to swallow. i am opposed to the admission of another man, for an or native to the polling booth until a woman is first and franchised, she wrote her daughter who was appalled. this willingness to endorse women's suffered and individual rights themselves on the basis of her sense of her own class and cultural superiority may have served only to convince emigrants, african-americans and working class activists of both sexes that the movement for women's rights was primarily meant for white middle class native-born women.
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it was an image that remained difficult to erase. in her insistence on women's rights to be fully realized, her defense of the universal rights of citizenship and her complex understanding of the relationship among political rights to personal relations of marriage and religious teachings, elizabeth cady stanton reached back to and expand upon the founding principles of american political life. elizabeth cady stanton understood women's wrongs and therefore they're right in terms that reflect the experience. one defined largely by girlhood, wifehood and motherhood with in the protestant property class. her outrage at being left out had always been nurtured by her deep conviction that she was an american, a citizen whose rights had been arbitrarily denied on the basis of sex. her radical inside that women deserve all the rights granted male citizens of the united states remained in fused with
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and sometimes damaged by a deep sense of entitlement. she was more like the nation's founders and she realized. like them she refused or failed to look too) or critically at her own complex place in the society she wished to change. elizabeth cady stanton left a huge legacy and it gets no smaller by complicating it. for all her limitations, few nineteenth century women loom quite as large. like the men we call the founding fathers she took what she viewed as simple truth and wove them into a velocity of rights that once expressed seem too obvious to debate. she didn't invent the notion of equal rights nor was she the first to demand they be extended to women but she grabbed the ideas that floated around her, shook them hard, shipment to word that strong and accessible, mixed it with some dose of charm and charisma and flung them back into the world forcefully enough to move countless others to act.
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elizabeth cady stanton could never focus on just one goal, one divot in the unlevel playing field in which she discovered more evidence of women's subordination, each and every time she was positive she had found what she called the one true cause of women's degradation, whether it was in what she called man's idea of rights or in difficult texts she should hardly contain her glee at her own cleverness and wrote her long-suffering friend susan b. anthony whenever she had moved on, my feeling is to tone up rather than tone down. the possibility of turning down was never really a major concern of anthony's who the devoted to her friend was often exhausted by her intellect. stanton herself was happiest, she said, when hurling my thunder at friends and opponents. and yet she was unable to evaluate her own prejudice,
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racism or astonishing self regard. nor did she acknowledge the moral complexity of those who disagree with her. of of us breviary of that legacy so we should applaud her insight and praised her work and hurl some thunder back. thank you. [applause] >> i hope you have time for questions. argument? questions? thunder? >> talking a little about her interactions and conversation with regard to women at the time. the kind of implication for her relationship with black women, talk about that.
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>> the relationship with black women at the time. she had very little. remarkably little. the abolitionists of her day, many of them had a lot of interaction with reformers of the time. she seems to have had very little. she did say and i slavery convention at the end of the civil war, this is the negro's's our. black men should be given the vote. do you think all black people are men? she was able to raise rhetorically that half of the emancipated slaves were women but in real life, she had very little interaction. she was friendly but i'm not sure what that meant.
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she was very good friends, it to beat his patience and generosity. with frederick douglass. he continued to visit her throughout their lives and was charmed by her. but she was not much connected with african-american women. i don't know much of the history but there was an actual bullet between two groups before and after the civil war, two competing national organizations, the african american women who had agreed to support black men's voting rights at the same time they endorse women's right. for many activists, also for many ordinary in anticipated free people, lanny part of the community voting was a major way to protect the rights. there was a different way of
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finishing not just of individual positions but community possessions. after the civil war, recently emancipation women, were deeply involved in the local convention and voting. they were very important at forcing the republican party and not stray. anybody else? >> i came upon a quote where in elizabeth cady stanton is denigrating her irish maid for her aptitude and spoiling their when company came over. it brings the question, did this from her feeling for women? >> i am not sure that -- you
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will not find an elite woman in the nineteenth century who did not complain. elizabeth cady stanton had a housekeeper who came to her and stayed for 30 years, amelia willard, who ran the household. she was quite free as were most women of her time, to complain about the girls who did the grunt work of the household. it probably was a reflective response more than a thought through nepotism. she could not have done what she did without amelia. and actually she is not alone in that. it would be unfair to criticize her more than any other women. she was wealthier in warm --
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than most reformers. >> elizabeth cady stanton was hardly the only white middle-class feminist to not be able to think past her own experience above angela davis's rating is, the white middle-class feminist movement of that decade for having blinders on about race or not being inclusive. i wonder if you would comment on the history of that intersection of class and race exclusivity and failure of inclusiveness. >> that is a great question and a complicated one that people have written most of that -- actually -- what happened in
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1970. to the extent that elizabeth cady stanton helped described woman in a way that has lasted in our culture, who was like her, native-born, well educated, to the extent that she created a women's rights movement that inscribed that person as woman, that tradition continues in our own times. that is not to blame her entirely. she helped create a rhetoric of feminism in which women was like herself. there were black women in her day -- almost always felt those rights needed to be talked about in the context of other
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community concerns. the notion of stand-alone feminism -- maybe it doesn't work. standalone feminism where you say all i have to think about is a privileged position. not to draw a direct line but -- it will be defined by my speech. >> it is hard to connect what you just said to what happened in the model of feminism that came from there. but i am wondering to what extent does that definition of rights as a kind of individual type issue as opposed to a community issue, it seems to me
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that that has been dogging progressive political movements in general since the 1970s at least. >> my answer to that is the cheating answer. the demand for individual rights. lot of us said that people are created equal provided a lightning rod for people who turn back over and over again, progressive movement in this country turned the declaration of independence for inspiration. it was deep in our heads at one time that individual rights and at the same time talk about community concerns and realities and standing that require complicating those rights.
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that is what stanton did. individual rights were not sufficient to create a just society. that is giving her credit for how she imagined a just society. just as i think powerful feminist movement advocated other things. >> what were your favorite moments when writing the biography? >> i had such a time writing this. i don't know if i had a favorite moment. you said you can't see me on the other end smiling. that was a lovely moment.
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i don't think -- i love writing and arguing. i don't know that i have a favorite moment. the most surprising moment was the number of times in the beginning that people say -- that was my biggest surprise. i was somewhat surprised by how strong it was. we have all read what i read to you. there is way more that is way more consistent than i thought it would be. just as a historian, finding out the percentage of the population of the united states -- that was kind of shocking. how could you not be satisfied?
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that doesn't happen often. another question? >> you open with her attending a convention overseas. how important was the international convention? how committed was she? >> it is important to missionary work and anti slavery in early nineteenth century reform movement. abolitionists were part of the movement. district in the 1840s in london was not for political reasons. that was where he was going. she had no idea it would be as thrilling as it was and what happened at that meeting, the delegates--the female delegates were denied an opportunity to be
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part of the convention. very lively. she was involved with international women's rights later on. you see stanton involved with middle and upper-class women in western europe. promoting -- i don't even know the word. the accomplishments of women. in terms of a radical movement i don't remember seeing much connection with the radical movements in europe. the condition of the pour born in the united states, but i don't think she had -- i don't think she was much outside the
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middle-class protestant -- using it as a comparison with her own status. look what we do here. this is a very conventional rhetorical use of foreigners who had different ideas on that. i don't think -- two children are living there. before she came back, i don't think she pushed her thinking very far. >> i was wondering if you could talk briefly about the response to the women's bible. something along of students are not really familiar with. it was incredibly radical. >> i talk about this in my book.
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it is a fabulous discussion of that question. it was in the 1890s supposed to be with a committee. it a kind of analysis of the way that biblical tests -- it wouldn't read very radical to most women now if you read it but it had more in touch in how she was viewed in her own movement than it did with how she was viewed -- read it or dismiss it. she was censured by her organization basically, christian women who were trying to gain respectability for their cause and wanted no association with something that undermined sacred texts or challenge the hold of religion. it was a a big struggle, inside the movement struggle.
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basically her movement -- a longer-term implication may be that she is less remembered that her more single-minded friend susan b. anthony. she alienated quite a few people. and by calling into question religious women who were important to the suffrage movement, the political evasion in the nineteenth century of the -- by undermining women's commitment to their churches basically, she was usually happy to meet people. >> i invite you all to join us outside. we have food and doughnuts outside and books for sale. we will talk more informally.
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[applause] >> lori ginzberg is the author of untidy origins, lease story of women's rights in antebellum new york. she is a studies professor at pennsylvania state university. she published this book in macmillan. visit and search for and 11. in his new book why are jews liberals, editor in chief norman podhoretz asks the question he has been asked in four decade in journalism. the 2009 miami international posted this program. >> speaking not only for myself but the miami book fair international, we are delighted to see such a big crowd here.
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you are here in anticipation that he will cause your head to explode. you know it is true. he knows it too. he has been infuriatingly people for the better part of six decades. he has even written entire books about all the people who wanted to kill him after reading his other books. after he published a book with the self-explanatory title x friends, one critic congratulated him for the invention of a whole new literary genre, the mm-hmm are organized around the principle of mutual antipathy. william hellman didn't like mr. podhoretz. norman mailer didn't like him even though they once sort of almost joined an orgy together. joseph heller wrote a spiteful novel about mr. podhoretz.
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allen ginsberg friend to turn his children into be next. gore vidal called him a fifth columnist for israel. he gathered his enemies and ex friends by a wave of startling political metamorphosis. i haven't checked the bios of everyone speaking at the book fair but i am fairly certain the only speaker to have both written for the stalinist journal partisan review and won a presidential medal of freedom from george w. bush is the one in this room. mr. podhoretz's reason is sprinkled liberally if i may use that word with similarly seeming contradictions. he edited the first new left journal commentary, then bolted the democratic party when it nominated the water carrier
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george mcgovern for the presidency. he is an intellectual who thinks intellectuals have ruined the world. most fundamentally he was the key director of the great exodus from liberalism in the democratic party during the 1970s. as leader of a movement that became known dismissively at first as neoconservatism. even during his best days on the left mr. podhoretz was never a very politically correct liberal. among the first words that brought him widespread public attention were an essay called my negro problem and hours which describes how a childhood spent on brooklyn's main street getting beaten up by a black kids shaped his political thinking. but when he went left liberalism mr. podhoretz really left it. he became one of a tiny handful of people who thought ronald reagan was too soft on the soviet union. he not only applauded the invasion of iraq but thinks the war was a success. in fact, he doesn't even think
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it was a war, nearly one front in a new world war against the force he refers to as islamofa c islamofascio islamofasciosm. he is now common for us to bomb iran. the liberals control everything. have i gotten past gilligan's island yet? where was i? he is calling for us to bomb iran. and soon. if you think the question and answer period is getting too tepid ask him if water boarding is torture. through his long political march to the right he has been puzzled that other jews did not come to the same conclusions he did about liberalism in general and the democratic party in particular. what liberals mainly see when they look at this country is in justice and oppression of every
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kind, economic, social and political, podhoretz wrote. by contrast conservatives see a nation shaped my complex of traditions, principles and institutions that has afforded more freedom and factoring in periodic economic downturns, more prosperity to more of its citizens than in any society in human history. it follows that what liberals believe needs to be changed or discarded and apologize to other nations, is precisely what conservatives are dedicated to preserving, reinvigorating and probably defending against attack. given alternatives like that. will mr. podhoretz argues, jews have chosen the wrong one. surely we do not to be joining with its defenders against those who are blind or indifferent or antagonistic to the philosophical principles, moral values and socio-economic institutions on whose health and vitality the traditional american system depends.
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i could go on with the typical stuff that goes in introduction including long lists of books mr. podhoretz has written an awards he has won but i can tell you are anxious for your blood to start bubbling. so i will get out of the way before it boiled over. ladies and gentlemen, norman podhoretz. [applause] >> i love being flatteringly introduced but glenn exceeded all my expectations. he also stole the conclusion of the talk you are about to hear from something of a published elsewhere and you are going to have to hear it again. but it is worth hearing again. i have often said, and i say again in this book, the never have i been asked any question on any subject as many times as i have been asked why most jews are liberals or more
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specifically, political form, why most jews keep voting for the democrats. but this question immediately give rise to another question. which is why so many people and especially non jews are so puzzled by the political attitudes and behavior that predominate among american jews. after all, up until the end of world war ii, no one would have wondered why most jews were liberals or why they were so committed to the democratic party because the answer would have seemed self-evident. in those days most american jews were for. this meant that the democratic party which spoke for the interests of people in their condition was their natural home.
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they suffered various forms of discrimination. this made it inevitable that they would look upon liberal ideas as being good for them. this is indeed had been the case for centuries. the ancestors both immediate and distant of the vast majority of american jews lived in europe where the forces that favored the emancipation of the jews and the granting of civil-rights and liberties to them had always been located somewhere on the left side of the political spectrum. in 20th-century america especially after the ascension of franklin delano roosevelt, the closest counterpart to these forces was the democratic party. conversely, the political right seemed to represent an american version of the conservative forces in europe which had always opposed equal rights for jews. it made perfect sense for jews to align themselves with the left and keep their distance from the right where they were
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in any case unwelcome. but then something momentous happened that began to rob these political commitments of the sense they had always made. this momentous event was the six day war of 1967. to be short even before 1967 in the decades following the end of world war ii jews found themselves getting more and more out of political step with the other white members of the roosevelt coalition. the attachment of these non jewish as no religious groups to the democrats was steadily declining in direct proportion to the improvement in their economic and social condition but not the jews. a substantial majority of whom camped on voting for the democratic candidates in every presidential election. it was this phenomenon that gave rise to milton him willfraud's
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deservedly saying this epigram -- jews earn like episcopalians and vote like puerto ricans. in short, i told you it was deservedly, in short, by 1967, the jewish commitment to the democratic party was already an anomaly from a socio-economic point of view. so far as discrimination is concerned most of the barriers against jews had already been toppled. the principle that was responsible for this development was a belief that justice required individuals to be treated on their own merits as individuals without regard as the old liberal catechism we used to recite when i was a kid in public school, without regard to raise, color, creed or country of national origin. but by 1967 this formerly sac


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