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tv   U.S. Senate  CSPAN  February 23, 2011 9:00am-12:00pm EST

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workers and administrators and start new facilities. so that i am on the phone with him and he says are you looking at it? i said yes. this is what we are sending to you. so you know what that means? the last time i heard poverty pimping was in 60s one the black panthers saw we were starting the war on poverty and what they said is we are willing to take care of our own families with their own lunch programs. you guys are starting this war on poverty and you are going to create jobs for yourself. so it was 30 years later that jerry brown says that to us. i will start doing with him at this point in time because i was questioning whether my services were breaking the cycle and helping people. .. an
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engineer. and, you know, i had a database system that could tell me what's happening in the family's life. i'm going to pay that information and we're going to see what kind of patterns what they would do themselves. and as we're bound to learn something. and he's adventurous enough to say okay.
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that would be interesting and so that was a start of the family independence initiative. and it started really as an experiment to try to see what the capacity was of families help themselves but also what i had learned is that nobody actually it out of poverty by themselves and what i had been setting when i got challenged in all of this and the african-americans after slavery in tulsa, and cambodias and all the doughnuts shops we have a huge history of people getting out of poverty. that's what i had been studying before the war on poverty. what we're going to do we're going to let the families ennol their own natural community and we'll watch and we'll see what they are going to do and we'll learn something and i had a database system and my staff were told we're going to meet with these groups of families, diverse groups so we can see how this works in the different communities, both ethnic, geographic and whatever and you can't say anything. so my staff was told that they
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would be fired if they provided any direction. and by this time i probably should -- i'm going to skip to here. so what we did is in order to find out what the capacity was of families both to take who are take initiative on their own and to help one another, my staff was told you have to create a vacuum of leadership, okay? so when we were -- what we would do is recruit families. they would have to self-select 5 or 6 other families. and you can read through that. they would self-select six -- actually the most to 6 to 8 families that were friends of yours. we would enroll the group. you would get a computer and you would to have report to us online what's happening in your family so we could track what were the different things helping and you not helping you as you were making it out and we would pay you for your time you would spend in reporting to us. you would to have meet with our liaisons and our staff and they would have to get the stories behind the data and then we're
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paying you for that time. so the liaisons when helper sitting in these meetings the groups would ask themselves, we know we can get paid but what do you want us to do? do you want to us buy homes? and whether -- and the lay-asiaons well, i can't tell you anything, you know, otherwise i'd get fired. so there were just -- it would be just this kind of silence, right? and the families, well, you know, whatever and then they would start talking what they're doing already and, you know, to survive in these neighborhoods, they do a lot to survive. they're really resoresful and resilient and so they start doing that and they would report it to us. down the line what end up happening is that the families kind of on their own after a while figured out that it wasn't direction flust it really was their own self-initiative that really earned them the money that they spent in reporting to us. and that one of the biggest lessons i got is -- one of these families jorge and his family
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was a refugee family from salvador. they wanted to go back to el-salvador they had been displaced there and this one particular couple was very quiet. and one day showed up at the monthly meeting and announced they were going to buy a house. well, the dilemma was none of the salvadorans had any money and they sent back their money to el salvador and they said okay all our friends are going to donate and we'll have a down payment and the real estate told us he could really help us buy this house down the street and they start down this cross and it started becoming very clear that this guy was a predatory lender. he spoke spanish and as the process went on, you know, there's something wrong here. can we talk to them? can we counsel them? can we get them to financial training, you know, i promised jerry broken that we'd stay out of the way and we'd see and sure enough when they closed their mortgage payments were 65% of their income. and they're going to lose my house and my staff was pissed at
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me and this is about us learning so we have to stay out of it and so the next thing that happened was pretty amazing. all of a sudden those people that had helped with the donations to get the down payment descended on this house they relandscaped it retilled in and six months later they had me sit on the refinance and they got their payments down 40% and it was clear they would keep that house within two months of them keeping that house the next amazing thing was the savings line -- because our data system every month when the families report, they see the charts of what their charts. and the savings line of all the families started going up and i talked to them how come you are saving now? well, if they can buy a house we can buy a house and sure enough within a year and a half they all bought homes and they didn't make the same mistake and the other amazing thing happened which i didn't realize is that people outside of our group start buying houses and the
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expectation within the broader salvadorian community in that part of oakland changed in terms of what their expectation was in terms of success. and we saw it had a ripple effect throughout this whole thing. if we had stopped to try to save that family, this never would have happened. we never would have learned how resourceful people really are and you can't program for this kind of thing. those were some of the lessons. the results that we've seen with our staff staying out of it have been 5 to 10 times better than when i had case managers, social workers, et cetera, et cetera. it'd been really significant. the other thing they sustained because they own the solution. it's their solution. you know, they developed it. and it also seems to have a ripple effect in terms of behavior or expectations for the broader community. these are some of -- some of the results of what we track 230 indicators and, you know, i can answer questions later. we have 230 indicators in our
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data tracking system and there's patterns that we look at in terms of income. we see informal income, nobody makes it on the $700 you get from welfare, there's a lot of other stuff going on. we get all the reports so we start seeing all the different types of initiatives that people have. but let me take you just a back a couple of slides. and this is -- this goes back to my mother. so what was happening, it was my mother, which then i saw replicated in all a these families that i've been telling but is that -- this is the pointer. no, never mind. my mother -- she was working for us and she worked really hard. she worked two jobs, everything. and that what she was able to do was get one kid over to here. and now i'm dealing with the next generation of kids. sorry. [laughter] >> and what we have is we have
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30 million households that we're working for in this country and most of the resources right now are really set up for intervening when you're poverty level and below. almost everything disappears by the time you're at 120, 130% below poverty level which is interesting. we found a study done by a sense juus bureau in 2008 that basically said in a three-year study that they did, 97% of the people that were here moved above the poverty level. but within three years 30% were right back under. and that's what i was seeing. when i was seeing those kids show back around, it's like we put a lot of money at that back end. almost nothing when you get people above the poverty level. we desert them at that point which is really when they're taking the most initiative and so we continue this cycle. and it's just not a good investment not to really continue to invest in people.
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and so -- yes. i was an engineer. [laughter] >> but you can see why i quit if if i stayed an engineer, people would have died. [inaudible conversations] >> there is a slide here. i just screwed it up again. can i go back to the thing. [laughter] >> i'll tell you what, you know, my mother wanted me either to be a doctor or an engineer. you can imagine if i would have been a doctor, it really would have been bad. we had enough trouble with me being an engineer. can i advance to -- ah, thank you. okay. and this is kind of the ending and then we'll take questions after the other comments which
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is that what we're looking for is that we need the safety net. when my sister was getting beat up and she had to run away from her husband with three kids, she needed social workers. she needed housing. she needed whatever. but as soon as she stabilized, she needed a different system that recognized her talents, her skills, her initiative. and we don't have that right now. and that right now only fits for middle and upper income and what we need to do is really extend the kind of benefits that are available to the middle and upper income back to people that are working for. they're amazingly productive. there's a $400 million underground economy in oakland, california. not drugs and prostitution. these are people cutting their hair, fixing cars for everybody. we have to take advantage of that resourcefulness. that economy. so those are the pieces that we're trying to advocate for but we're running into a lot of obstacles and we'll be able talk about that in a little bit. thank you. [applause]
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>> mark, why don't you come on up and -- >> good afternoon, everybody. thank you, reid, thank you, maurice and thank you for new america for sponsoring this day. i think it's really going to be a great conversation and i actually am going to reserve some of my time so we can spend it more in conversation with one another because i think maurice is only skimming the surface so far. but my name is marta urquilla. and i work at the office of social innovation and civic participation within the domestic policy council at the white house. our office is focused on making sure that more solutions like the one that maurice is responsible for in oakland can spread to more communities across the country. we're interested in looking at the ways in which community solutions that are innovative
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and effective and that's a very important "and" in that statement can be supported and brought to scale because we believe that in order to move the needle on some of our most pressing national challenges it's going to require that relentless focus on results at the same time of coupling with innovative leadership and solutions to really turn things around in communities. and our office has been supportive of many efforts. we are the policy angle of social innovation but the implementation is really happening through agencies and departments in the government. so the social innovation fund at the corporation for national and community service, the investing in i-3 and race to the top competitions at the department ed there are other competitions at hhs are all focused on rewarding results, which is a very different way to frame funding or investments in community solutions. and it raises the bar, it raises
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stakes there's a lot of push-back on this. i'm sure a lot of you are following this. there's a tension of doing good work and showing that you do good work in order to receive the support that's needed. but we believe that investing in what works is critical to achieving the kinds of solutions we want to see especially at scale. in our office we are focusing right now on three areas. one is around civic engagement or civic participation so ways in which people and their ideas and their energy and their resources contribute to the solving of local problems but also in terms of the innovation space, social impact investing and social impact bonds are two key areas that we're really focusing on right now. the 2012 budget has $100 billion in there for innovation through social impact bonds at seven agencies in the government and if you're not familiar with social impact bonds that's a
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very interesting area to be following right now. there's some interesting models in the u.k. and in australia ways governments can partner with an intermediate organization and investors to drivement and in the u.k. how you can work with an intermediary in the u.k. this group is called social finance to ask them to essentially find the providers that can help lower the recidivism rate and the government partners with the intermediary. they choose who the providers are. they know what the outcomes, they've agreed on the outcomes and there's a set of investors who are paying into delivery of those outcomes so it's a realignment of investment rather than to simply maintain jails or prisons we're reducing the need for prisons and we're investing in those solutions that are specifically focused on keeping people from going back in. and so that's an example coming
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out of the u.k. we're looking at ways in which those could be implemented or pilot lighted and there's state and local governments that are looking of this independently of the federal government. nook is looking at some solutions as well. but it's an interesting area and an interesting way of redirecting funding streams, realigning incentives and priorities. and as i said, we're going forward with recommendations for this in the 2012 budget. so there's a lot of commitment on our part in terms of investing in innovation as we talk about outeducating and winning the future. i think what maurice has brought forward is an example of a community-led solution which we know there are many, many, many of these out there. people who like maurice have lost through personal experience and have seen a problem and have rallied to respond with a solution and have engaged others with an approach and are focused
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on delivering those outcomes, those results. that's something which we also support is how do we get to being able to quantify the effects of the good work that people are doing? and there's this big challenge for the field where there isn't necessarily consistent standard by which impact or effectiveness is measured. but it's something that we need to continue to work on and discuss. and really come to agreement on what impact looks like or what results look like. we, you know, i think for us it's also looking at, you know, how can government in partnership with various sectors support innovation and more importantly how can government get out of the way? because i think when you get to the level that maurice has described in his essay as the accompanying paper addresses, you know, there are some barriers that come by way of policy or by way of how investments are historically made. so i think it's really important when we're looking at not only how to do we take a good solution and scale it but think about whether the systemic
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changes that need to happen a so that that scale can occur and that scale can occur not just for that solution but for others as well. and i think the notion of innovation to be seen from multiple viewpoints and angles. it could be an innovation of an idea or approach or methodology it doesn't mean brand-new or born yesterday but it could be a reinvention of a solution that has been in place for some time. and i think it's good conversation that folks are having, you know, the notion that it's innovative to think about low-incomed people as a consumer versus a client. i mean, that's an innovative way of approaching the work that maurice is doing. and it's an important conversation to have. how we all can be change agents in our own lives but in supporting the lives of others. and i think that, you know, another piece that we're looking at is really around the alliances that need to be made. you know collaboration, we no longer live in a time where one
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entitity can sort of do it alone. and the systems are much too complex and the need for overhaul of those systems is pretty steep but as we say, you know, government can't do it alone. we're asking for collaboration and partnership with other sectors be it the nonprofit, the business community and it plays out from every level from the federal level to the state and the local level and they can only go so far but with the collaboration of other entities in other that location so to the degree that the local government is engaged or local business or other nonprofits or other institutions of community -- it's really critical because those -- those people that maurice is serving do not only interface with their own families and their own lives but they interface and with his organization but they interface with other institutions. so whether it's the public schools, you know, the access to the housing market, the realty market, et cetera, so it's very important that collaboration be
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a part of the solution. as you look at the federal investments and innovation, those are investments that really promote and reward collaboration. race to the top, that's a huge collaboration of the state level, that just the announcement of the funding drove people to recognize the need to form those alliances and redefine their behaviors and come together as a unified solution to the problems of education and their state and the same with investing and innovation and the social innovation fund really playing to the strengths and assets of each collaborating partner to achieve this one common goal. there's an interesting example in ohio, the drive initiative that many of you have heard about and i think that's an interesting example of collaboration and a way in which folks have been galvanized around the issue of education to respond from a funder's perspective to a local service provider to the families to the broader institutions or universities and we want to see more and more and more of that
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because the way that resources are right now, the need to really have a targeted direction of public and private resources is so critical and so the standards by which those resources are directed to support good quality efforts really, really matters and to be able to show what works -- it's so critical. gone are the days when you could be a charismatic leader, have a really great p.r. strategy for your organization and win the hearts of your local funders and that was enough to help you get to the next level. you really have to show now that you are making a difference at a population level, what is the impact of the work that's being done because it is too dire in terms of the availability of resources to continue to support good programs. at the same time, not everything is a science. and clearly the leadership behind every solution matters. and the places are all different. so san francisco or oakland -- it's not detroit.
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it's not st. louis. every place requires its unique solutions but there are elements of these solutions, of these organizations and their programs that can be replicated and that can be scaled. and there's a lot to learn and a lot to share with other similar efforts. so we hope that more folks are paying attention to the work that maurice is doing. and looking at how more -- they could be doing more in their own locations but also just to think about from a funder's perspective, you know, there aren't these walls, say, philanthropy and nonprofits and the private business community. we're all part of the same community together. we're all trying to achieve a common goal. how do we get there together? i would say that we can have more of a conversation about that. our interests again, you know, to continue to spur these conversations and to move things as best we can within the federal environment, working with our different agencies and departments and really helping to keep this conversation going because it is such a critical
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conversation. so thank you. >> thanks very much. i greatly appreciate having the opportunity to be here. i thank reid for his kind comments in the introduction. it's always pleasure to come to the new america foundation which continues to be a steady source of new and innovative thinking across a wide range of areas. i also really appreciate having the opportunity to listen to and to hear more about the work of maurice and the family independence initiative. maurice had come and talked with me and colleagues acf the american children and families last year. and i had heard about family independence initiative before then. there is, i think, an enormous
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amount that is exciting to learn about and to think about and to be challenged by from their experience. so as indicated in my intro, i'm at the administration for children and families. but let me just say a few words about acf itself. and then focus for the rest of my comments some of the challenges of fasters innovation and effectiveness in efforts to make a difference in addressing poverty and helping families advance and she could to say a little bit of acf, we're the part of hhs that's responsible for a wide range of programs affecting low-incomed principally low-incomed children, families and communities. within the jurisdiction of acf, our tanf, the welfare reform effort, the head start program, child care, the child welfare system, the child court program, refugee assistance, energy
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assistance and social service block grant the ss for independence program and others. so the work for -- within acf is guided by a set of priority goals. and for us, those are to be addressing child and family economic security. to promote child safety, to reach vulnerable underserved populations and to enhance our organizational capacity to make a difference in these programs to make them more effective and to promote the integrity of these programs. so in doing all this, we are guided by a commitment to intraoperability. i wish there was a better term for that. by intraoperatebly we mean breaking down all these programs. recognizing that they are
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working towards common goals but too often working separate and apart from each other. so towards an effort to have them move towards common goals and to make it easier for states and trods and other grantees to coordinate the programs, to have integrated agendas in what they do. we're also very much guided by the administration's strong priority on ensuring that we use and that we encourage the grantees at acf to use the strongest available research and evidence-based practices in their operation. so in these programs one thing to emphasize and it presents a challenge for the federal law is that in virtually all of these, the federal government doesn't directly deliver services. instead, it provides funds to states, to trods, local grantees, sometimes nonprofit organizations, sometimes
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governments in providing the funding. sometimes this is done with lots of requirements, sometimes with few requirements. but ultimately the grantees are responsible for operating the program. and that does wind up having important implications for thinking about the federal role in fostering innovation and in measuring effectiveness because it prevents a whole set of choices. sometimes made by congress, sometimes delegated by congress to us about how to strike the balance between federal prescription and flexibility in the program. whether to be specifying the strategies that grantees are to be using or the outcomes that they should be seeking to attain. what the nature of reporting looks like. what the nature of accountability needs to look like. whether to be trying to affect their behavior through pluses, through penalties, through both, through neither. all those -- all a those are
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issues. so maurice's experience, his comments this morning and the papers that both maurice and the companion paper describe, in which i'd recommend reading for more thoughts and insights on this do present, i think, a set of challenges for us both in and outside of government in asking about how we decide whether current approaches are effective. in a world of very limited resources, how we can make judgments about both how they can be approved. and whether there's something else out there which is a different approach, who suggest a different paradigm that might be more effective than things that we're currently doing. in the set of things maurice talks about, i think there are pieces of it that probably a number of states, if they were here, would agree with. certainly not everything. but i think that there are, for
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example, aspects such as saying it's important to operate from a strength-based framework rather than focusing on deficits. that it's better to be taking a whole family approach instead of focusing narrowly on individuals. it's better to be comprehensive and flexible instead of being rigidly divided and taking a one size fits all approach. this doesn't always happen in practice but i think as a matter of principle people would often say this is how they aspire to proceed. there is also, i'd say, in a number of places around the country considerable interest in the potential role of incentive-based approaches. this was most recently tested in new york city's conditional cash transfer initiative that had been inspired by the efforts in mexico and elsewhere around cash transfers as a means of encouraging a set of behaviors
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from families and was very much guided by the premise that families didn't need extensive engagement from workers but could motivated by their own incentives and incentive-based framework. i think there's a lot of interest on the potential role of incentives in some of the research at acf where we're looking at clear pathways initiative and wanting to understand roles incentives may play and behavioral economics can play in thinking about this. having said this, what does seem to me to be most distinctive about maurice's approach is what marta referred to as the consumer versus client perspective. the focus on recognizing the essential role of the family and of the individual in making
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their own choices and in particular blending that with the essential role of the peer group and a community support network and the potential strength from being part of such an effort. i think much is powerful and compelling in that presentation. there is -- this is an area where we don't have at least when we look about rigorous research we don't have much rigorous research around looking at it. but for people who do work in communities, i suspect that there will be a great deal that rings very true in maurice's description. we certainly do have at least some research about the importance of social capital and social networks, in helping people in finding employment and in addressing children's needs and addressing urgent short-term needs and efforts around assets building. i think we probably know less about government and supporting efforts like this and the
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questions of when the appropriate role is to support, when the appropriate role is to get out of the way. how to spur and strengthen social networks that aren't already in place. and from that standpoint there's much that we need to -- we could be learning from the family independence initiative and other efforts. at the same time, i do need to make just the obvious cautions from an evidence-based perspective. that when we look at results from this initiative or indeed many that we might hear about, we have to keep in mind that outcomes aren't the same as impacts. that they depend in part on the characteristics of who's participating in the program. that the initiative that people who are participating may not be the same as people who aren't participating. and the very point that one size fits all isn't -- has its limitations on suggesting about
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thinking of multiple strategies. it seems to me that a particular consideration here is thinking hard about the questions substitutions versus complimentary and the suggestions such as the ones maurice and his colleagues are operating can, in fact, substitute for things that government currently does. when are the instances in which we really want to think of them in complementary terms. that it is surely the case that a social network may be extremely effective in helping someone find a job when they're between jobs. they may, in fact, be helpful in a family or an individual trying to think about so what do i want to do next and where do i want to go in the labor market? when it comes time to actually say, so i want to be in this training program ultimately somebody has to deliver the
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training program. so thinking about the complementary nature. similarly, in an area such as child care, a network such as this, could play an important role in providing backup child care, in talking -- helping people understand what's available in the community, what experience g-experiences they have been what a family faces when they place their child in child care at the same time it's not playing the same role as operating a head start program or a a high quality child care program. so i think throughout we want to think carefully about the substitution and the complementary aspect of things. let me just say in closing, i also think that one of the striking things in sharing maurice's comments in his paper is the potential role for making much better use of competition
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and the potential role of choice by families and the ways in which that can both empower individuals, send important views about which providers are performing better, help us think about market share issues and help us think about who needs to be rewarded and how we can learn from the experience of the providers that are most effective. the potential of social networks and social media in having people be able to communicate their experiences and have others learn from those experiences is potentially quite important. the administration is very focused on the potential of greater use of competition as a means of identifying higher performers and learning from those performers. so let me close by just saying
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that it is tremendously both interesting and challenging to hear of maurice's comments, his experience. i do think that it suggests a whole range of questions for dialog about how we can do better and build on innovation and i greatly look forward to continuing it both today and after today. thanks. [applause] >> great, okay. there's a lot there. both in maurice's remarks and also by marta's and mark's comments. so we're going to want to give you a chance to respond to some of those issues. and open up for a broader discussion here and i guess, you know, really a lot there to respond to but let me just start you off by asking, you know, what actually more do you want to learn about the experience to date? i mean, where do you think some of your knowledge needs to be
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and, you know, filled in to then begin addressing some of the issues that mark raised, for instance? >> i think for us when i first started this work i came out of the nonprofit sector after i left engineering and what i learned is that when i ran social services is that i was constantly trying to get money. trying to get funding and that's what drove everything. and i came to learn that foundations and government really set the table in terms of what i would do. so if foundations government were asking me what the need is and what service to provide then i come up with needs and service. so ultimately what we decided is we need to engage conversation like this. what we want to do is people who are really controlling money and have the most influence. what we need to as mark said look at the population of 30 million households as consumers
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and then how do we fill that market niche but if we're the ones who have control of some of the resources and some of the opportunities then how do we make it available to that marketplace? >> the other thing i'd like you to react to is a little bit about the way you re-imagined the case management model and how that process has gone and specifically about how you're responding to the needs of gathering information about what's happening that obviously both from some of the partners that might be involved in this effort, government or others, have, you know, as requirements that they are part of that process of collecting information and reporting an accountability. how have you seen that work and what's -- what's next? >> it hits kind of two big realms. on the case management fees, i had 120 staff when i ran my
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nonprofit. i had case managers, social workers, environment specialists, you name it. and what i found is that when we tried without any of them, that the families in many ways provided better expertise and counseling than i ever could. they were friends. they were culturally relevant. they had often had the same bad experiences but what's interesting is that i learned that and sort of like my mother, even though you were in this very low-incomed, isolated community, you know, one of our families mothers was a real estate agent or whatever and when you would get in troublesome people solved problems and so there were strengths in your social networks and in many ways when you shared that who got in trouble and did the same thing that experience of somebody you could relate to, explaining how to get through it and how to manage it or whatever, they did a much better job than when i had case managers. i had social workers that were in their mid to late 20s that
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had not really experienced anything trying to counsel a family who had been through refugee camps, survived everything, came to this land without any language, figured out how to get a job. amazingly resourceful people. and i had a 28-year-old trying to counsel them? it didn't make any sense. and yet that's the only thing i could get funding for. i really couldn't get it -- so that catches on the -- not just government and funders. and funding the way it's actually set up often requires case managers and the dilemma is that when a funder requires it, then you really try to provide that. and ultimately it does tend to undermine it. and i'd have to say i felt that at a certain point i was actually doing harm which is sort of the first tenet of this work is don't do harm. >> and i wanted to ask kind of mark and marta to weigh in here as well and maybe kind of both identify some of the tradeoffs in a multiobjections between
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proscription and flexibility and, you know, how do you see that kind of playing out in the current environment both with -- as the social innovation fund is kind of looking to identify, you know, good work and promise out there but also overseeing a broader array of programs that kind of have their requirements and how do we see that being -- some of that tension being played out in future times here? >> i think it's an important tension, proscription versus, you know, encouraging bottom-up solutions, right? so i think what we could see the -- the administration high a has point of view and the federal government as mark was saying there's a lot of things that the federal government does or doesn't do or does or doesn't do well. so the federal government in and of itself isn't the innovator. but what we have is the ability to direct resources towards those that are.
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and that are effective innovators. so we can say in the case of the social innovator fund what is being sought which is effective solutions in the areas of healthy futures, youth development and support or economic opportunity or in the case of race to the top, you know, effectiveness in the areas of education around classroom reform, et cetera, and then hold people to that standard and so we're not telling them how to do it. we're not saying this is the program, this is the model. this is the approach but you have to demonstrate a track record and an ability to get things done. with the social innovation fund it's about identifying intermediary organizations that can source the local innovations or the local community solutions and making them that grant maker to the local community. and yet there are programs that do require some directions because we do have programs that are backed by evidence and research and we know that's the approach that will generate the outcome that's desired.
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and so it's not an either/or. i think it's a both and. and there is a segment of the population, for example, in the work that maurice talked about that can do what maurice sets up that can set in an environment like that that's absolutely who they are and what they do. to be able to make choices every day. if anybody is making choices i think low-incomed people are making a lot of choices every single day. but there are folks who are in situations where they are challenged and ways in which they can't, they can't decide for themselves. there may be mental health challenges. there are programs of handheld experience and programs that don't. and i think the unleashing the choice is a common thing and something we've seen in the charter school movement. it's something that we're staying in these innovation funds. come forward with the solutions. we're not telling you how to do it or, you know, to do it in the first place. we know that you're already hard at work. and so bring it forward. let it be known, let be it seen.
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if it merits the funding, then we'll get it. >> so some of -- some of the programs that we administer are ones where they are grant programs and if you apply for the grants then we can choose the grantee. a number of them and often where the largest amount of money is involved will be ones where funds go to states or in the case of the head start program to grantees who are long established. but in the situation where funds are going to states, as you can readily imagine, the disputes about how to strike the balance between outcomes and proscriptions are intense disputes. they typically get fought out in the legislative process.
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they typically wind up some set of either compromises or somebody winning as do where the balance gets struck and then for those of us involved in administration, we often face a structure where we need to proceed in light of the decisions that congress has made. so that very often means that an important aspect of trying to foster innovation involves the research agenda, the technical assistance agenda, the best practices, efforts to try to foster conversation both horizontal and vertical about experiences and learning and interesting things people are going that seem promising that would be good for others to know about. and so it then -- and that becomes much the process. as marta indicated, there are
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some examples and there were a couple of striking ones by congress in -- last year around both teen pregnancy and home visiting where in both instances the determination was there actually is a strong enough research base about things which have been established to be effective that in structuring of programming it makes sense to say that most of the money needs to go to things which have been determined to be effective through research while at the same time ensuring that some of the funds can be used for innovation in a context where there is a commitment to evaluate innovation. certainly one of the issues that the people will face over time is that with any innovation there's a question of what's the point at which evaluation is
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appropriate? there is a big learning startup period. it is also the case that for some of the most innovative organizations, it's not really the situation that they reach a stable state where they're doing the same thing. they're continuously innovating in the program three years from now it's going to look different than it looks today. and that poses a set of issues around evaluation. so i believe the short answer of the test but what it does mean there's not necessarily a single way to go across all programs. it very much does depend on the grantees and the federal state of the relationship and what's known about the relevant research base and this continuing tension really between innovation and building
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on what's already been done. >> that's very helpful. okay. we're going to open it up now to questions from the floor. there'll be a mic going around. i'll call on you. you'll tell me who you are. you'll say where you're from maybe and then you'll ask a question directly, shortly to one of the panelists up here so we'll do that. before we do think of your questions now, i did want to ask maurice something. you said pay the family as something you think of as how this model was kind of unfolding. mark mentioned in his remarks that the conditional cash transfers where there's certain behavior that is identified that we think other think it might be positive and paying for specific outcomes. and there's a body of work that research that's being collected around that that i think is quite interesting and promising and we've been trying to follow and promote here at the new america foundation. did you see the conditional cash
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transfer analogy as part of this or is that really intentioned with your approach since you're not trying to presuppose a specific outcome? >> great question because i think a lot of times our work is characterized as a conditional cash transfer and i don't see temperatuit that way. where i come from the biggest distinct like people in crisis, there's people in crisis -- middle and upper incomed have a crisis. the disparities between the low-incomed and the rest of us the middle and upper income they have less money and they aren't in the social networks all the opportunities but in terms of resourcefulness that it really is there. the difficulty i have with cash transfers is that it presupposes that families really don't know what's the right thing to do. i've hated the library card thing. it's like, you know, that they were incentivizing a library card nobody would think of that
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if that was the most important thing next to paying your electricity bill, you know, those types of stereotypes that kind of got perpetuated i didn't really like but what i liked it did transfer cash to these families and ultimately they would use those dollars that they felt was really important and they needed those dollars so i do think it unleashes other pieces of it but right now almost all the evaluation is really on the cash transfer pieces being the incentive as opposed to having the extra funding and whatever creates more creativity and innovation within the family itself. >> yeah. >> which is more where we're really looking at. >> actually there is some overlap between some of the goals that the families and family independence initiatives identified and -- >> so we don't take issue with them other than the stereotype. it kind of still kind of promotes. >> right behind you there, rachel. >> i'm steve with u.s. basic income guarantee network.
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and we're exploring ideas about unconditional cash transfers. that you may know in the 1960s it was a mainstream moderate idea that there ought to be some type of guaranteed income and similar programs are gaining a lot of momentum in many other countries, brazil, ireland, elsewhere. so you've sort of started to answer my question just a moment ago. i want to thank you for that and thank you for providing answers also to some of the questions that i'm often hearing which are based on the stereotypes. so if you could just comment more about the value of unconditional cash transfers and what you think might happen if we were to give all poor people say expanding the earned income tax credit or even going beyond that. >> on my perspective, so much of what we're trying to do is break
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down kind of the -- not just the stereotypes but sort of the distinction that's being made between kind of us and them. and so the reason that you saw that line drawn kind of like the rich folks -- sorry, the rich folks get a lot of money and right now you hear lower income that you don't get very much unless you get into welfare and whatever and then there's a system there. and the reason why we drew the line the way we did and eit contraction could really be part of that line, what we're trying to do is once my sister really taking her initiative to get her life together she didn't want to be seen as, quote, poor. she didn't want to have thought of as special and a charity case and was the same way with my mother and they want to be concluded in society. $360 million are set aside for asset building for middle and upper income. so there are those issues and
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that what we want to do is conclude the populations that are really taking a lot of initiative to be concluded in that system. so, you know, i don't have issue with what you're trying to do. i also think those are really important things. i would try to make sure that it was really a way to rebuild the connections between all of us would be the only thing. >> let me see your other hand. i'll go with katherine and then -- >> hi katherine kravitz. there's some research, i believe, that effectiveness from a cost-effective standpoint, it's better to put resources into people who are the most dysfunctional and that a lot of -- or families that are the most intensely needy because other people seem to be able to find their way out on their own.
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i'm addressing to mark in particular whether you find that in the child poverty area and whether you're taking that into consideration from a cost-effectiveness standpoint especially in this time of budget cuts? >> so i -- i wouldn't actually subscribe that as a general principle or the general finding from the research. there is -- in acf we rely heavily on experimental findings from random studies with an experimental group or a controlled group and you measure the impact of a particular initiative by looking at the difference between the two. there really are a range of findings but the frequent findings and sometimes the frustrating finding a particular
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initiative has its greatest impact with the middle group so -- you know, there's lots of issues about how do you define the middle group but basically the point is that people who had the greatest capacity could accomplish whatever was the -- the thing that's being measured without the program. people who had the greatest problems were sometimes not helped or not helped very much by the program and that a group somewhere between the two wound up showing an impact. so that finding does appear sometimes but again, i wouldn't universalize this at all. you know, what i would say i'm answering you somewhat more broadly is that in a strongly evidenced based administration we are seeking to make use of experimental findings whenever
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they are based on high quality studies and provide guidance for policy. it's not always the case that you have a sufficient experimental base for debt and the issues of the most effective use of the evidence-based policy then call for looking at a range of evidence. >> okay. right here on the aisle. >> wholes? >> six years ago i spent a month in oakland talking with maurice's staff writing my thesis on the family defense initiative so i was actually wondering -- in talking about this a little bit and it's actually the first question that the research has asked in their family, you know, are there certain types of families that sort of benefit from this initiative?
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and i was wondering about maurice perspective on service side and they are poorer and they have fewer resources. you guys collect a ton of data. do you actually think there are characteristics both of families of the affinity groups which function very differently? that sort of define whether or not people are able to take advantage of these programs? >> that's an amazing question. i want to know the answer to that. >> i want to answer it very simply. it depends. [laughter] >> it's sort of where like mark is at. people are people. there's a huge diversity. and i'll answer this more in terms -- for middle and upper income, we have a huge -- now that i'm middle income, i wasn't middle incomed all the time but now that i learned how it was to be middle and upper income then there's a huge diversity in what we need in our populations of
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capacities even within the family. my kids are all different. and whatever. and that the way our system deals with it is that they make available services when we need them. if i need a financial planner, i'll buy it. i'm the consumer, therefore, i'll buy it. and there's times when i bought my first house i had no idea how to buy a house but i bought i house because i got a real estate agent and they knew how to do the whole thing but, you know, when i run -- my programs i used to have run low-incomed families through training and it made no sense that i didn't know anything andier have to go through financial training because i had some money but i would run low-incomed families through that kind of thing. what we're really pushing for is to have this country make available the range of choices and benefits that are available to middle and upper income and connect the two populations and have a more distinction. it's a huge economy. it is a huge set of
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resourcefulness and we really need to only actually places 10% in life. marta i think was saying they play a part with your breathalyzer and church and all those families deal with all of those things all of the time. we're trying to prove that the capacity is there in these communities. and that it actually can work to scale if you go through natural community friends and, you know, so we had a ripple effect of hundreds of people all of a sudden showing up wanting to enroll because they heard the first 16 families were able to do it their way. so, you know, that's how the irish got out. that's how -- it's a natural process and the thing would be this country really adds the kind of diversity and quit trying to come up with a program. you can't institutionalize these things. you need a ton of different programs and we need to be more data driven and consumer driven. those are the pieces that need to happen. we focused on starting with
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families who were around poverty level just to prove the point. we knew we couldn't start with families in crisis. you know, 'cause that's what the safety net is supposed to be for. but we'd start near poverty level and 40% of families are below poverty. they're struggling and they're trying to do something in crisis and others are above poverty level but it was to really prove the point. in hawaii we tried -- there was one group that could have advanced using at least the payments that we made and the access we had, they could have used it really well to advance. they already had connections to japan to try to build their farms and whatever. and we turned them down. mostly not because they couldn't be helped by the type of diversity and ways of earning that we were promoting. ..
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i mean something like that i think is fascinating. it is true. why don't we really look, relook at the system? one of the things we're saying is that people do need resources and it does depend, we have to make some assessment where can you use a case manager and when is
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that really superfluous and that undermines the initiative? i think it falls on funders and policy people to look how the distinction can be made. but that type of idea, given the administration's looking for innovation and different types of solutions -- >> yet we don't want to abandon what works if there is something in that infrastructure, although it is compelling idea. >> compelling idea. >> anything? >> just an observation. so in tanf the block grant that goes to states for what was referred to, for the old welfare system when it was, when it went through the big changes in '96. so in that they're actually isn't a requirement that the state administer the program or that the county administer the program. it is possible to contract out to have other entities
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do so and. so i'm thinking for example, in wisconsin there was a contracting out and in the city of milwaukee different agencies wound up having responsibility for different parts of the city. what, what does emerge in that settings, i mean it is a challenge with public agencies too, are the issues of about, what do you write into the contract, what do you require, how do you measure the effectiveness of what they're doing? all those issues do arise. the other thing that i'd note, which becomes a, becomes another issue around trying to move to a more competitive model, i think the type of things maurice i think is envisioning a true competition where there is
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multiple providers within an area and you pick the one you want. that's a very different from a structure that says, there will be competition for who gets the contract for this service area. so those are two very different meanings to competition. >> yes. >> i will add a little bit to that. that's a really important distinction for us in that because of the feedback we were getting from the families certain perhaps seem to work for some people and not for other people, et cetera, they were starting to tell each other, there is a lot of story-telling we pick up the stories on our data tracking system they go every month and report on these 230 data points that one of them is when they report they have been to a child care center or whatever, now there is a five-star rating system and rate the program one stars, five stars and the comments about it. and the first reason was they wanted to tell each other, i don't know if y'all live in d.c. those types of
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things where we look for restaurants and whatever we want to know people's opinions. the other thing is the mayor in boston says he has 146 nonprofits in a two-mile radius and doesn't know from consumer side what works and doesn't work. he was curious what the people thought. the technology, we're building a whole social media piece onto this whole thing. the technology is there to get consumer feedback. that is one of the things we're pushing for governor brown to put into california. >> let's keep moving here. we'll start with you and go back. >> i'm sandy with the kresge foundation. i've been hearing a lot about cuts that aply we're going to primarily cut to balance our budget. i have also been hearing about evidence-based programing. i like to hear whether or not, to what extent the findings from evidence-based programs really informing those cuts and if not, how can we representing
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philanthropic sector make that more part of the discussion? and if it is part of the discussion what do you need more of? >> yeah. let me extend that a little bit to the social innovation fund process that marta might have insight on not cut but led to affirmation of some ideas that came forward. >> i think that the, there's such a, and mark too can chime in on the evans piece. it's clear there is a need for more evidence and that there are areas where evidence is showing impact and want to continue that. these models of the teen mom program and the home visitation model at hhs are, you know, the universe of evidence is so small and it is very clear. it doesn't rule out that there aren't other, excuse me, other effective models. and in fact groups are encouraged in different
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federal grant areas to put forward if they think they have a model that is effective but it is not there on the list already to put that forward. so i think that on the one hand continuing to build this evidence base. so where there are investments in innovation fund, you know, those fund are just like a year into their operations, if even that. to get to the evidence of those, there is still a way to go. and some of those are funds that are in the authorization. there's a time set in it. it will be for five years, et cetera. it become as decision around, you know, appropriations every year whether the funds will be appropriated but the legislation sets that fund up to last for x period of time. so there is a lot of different factors into this. in terms of the 2012 budget i think there are clear indications continuing to invest in areas where the evidence base can continue to be -- where community
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solutions like the kind that maurice is here presenting today will continue to have an opportunity to receive federal support so you can see that the invests made in the areas of innovation are there for experimentation around as i described, the social impact bond model which is called pay for success. rewarding performance. continuing to create that environment or maintain that space open for those programs to rise to the surface to be seen as potential opportunities for growth and investment. but we do have a lot of cuts that we're balancing at the same time. i don't think that means it's one or the other kind of choice that was made and i think this administration is very closely where evidence is showing a difference and showing an impact or the desired out comes are being achieved and wherever possible to be able to sustain those. but i think in general the
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onus is on community solutions to show their worth and to show they are achieving results and achieving impact. i don't think there is any getting away from that. >> mark, insights into the budget process here? >> well, just to briefly add, what i would say is that for us in the process of developing our budget for 2012 and in the back and forth with would. mb, the office of management and budget in that process, issues around evidence and effectiveness and, and, information about the effectiveness of programs were very, very prominent. again the exchanges and in developing the budget. you know, at the same time it is certainly the case that for a large number of
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programs there are always places you wish you knew more and where there is some things you can tell from, from rigorous experimentation. there are areas where there isn't any. there are somewhere the data helps you to tell you a story. there is somewhere that the data is much thinner then you would like. and i do think the, the overall, one of the overall challenges before us how we improve that process over time. >> isn't that -- >> and it can be a more informed structure. >> isn't that true of the defense budget as well? shouldn't we ask the same questions over there? you don't have to answer that. we'll take a few more stacks up here and tell me your questions and then we'll let the panelists have final remarks. we'll start in the back and go here and saw another hand over here. there you go. so one, two, three, thank you.
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>> i am ceclio morales from the employee training reporter. i came here to hear about solutions to a new war on poverty and i maybe have not seen a scuffling playing with poverty here. i want to hear from the administration people, is there going to be a new war on poverty? poverty did go up and what, does that consist of? is it this social funding innovation and is it that which is 100 million or billion? i didn't get that clear. >> billion. thank you. of course the title was ours and not theirs. yes, right here? >> thank you. bruce mclary, formerly brookings and a friend of maurice's. question, factual question, maurice, when and why and how do family or family
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groups leave the oversight or the reporting from fii? and does that, do you have any tracking to know whether simply the reporting makes a difference in their behavior while they're reporting and after they left? second a frivolous question. we have a whole new definition of social networks in this country. facebook being a case in point. is there any way that you can use the new social networks to advantage in what you're doing? >> great question. finally up front here. thank you. >> jeff --, john smile with the american humane association. my question is too with tanf since it is the biggest thing on the table in terms of the reauthorization, 16 1/2 billion. and states do have some flexibility. they have since 1996 as mark pointed out i guess. so the question is in that reauthorization if it should happen what would be the changes or the strengthening it or altering it? >> great.
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thank you. can you handle some of those stacked up together, maurice and marta and mark make final comments as well? >> sure. on the new war on poverty i would certainly hope that there will be a new war on poverty but major impetus from that would come from the families themselves. you know, when i talk with families i tell them there has been a 40-year on poverty some of the smartest people in the country with resources and they haven't figured out how to help you. it will be up to you and you need to lead this. you can't have me sitting up here talking about these things. i'm hoping in a few years they will be sitting talking to you. so that piece, that's what i'm looking forward to. that is one of the pieces. i think government and people like this are the ones that need to work together with our families to make a difference. it is that coalition i think is important and hopefully we'll get a new war on poverty. not the old one. >> [inaudible]. >> go ahead.
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>> so i think it is important to note the funding streams i described are not all the funding streams that are -- [inaudible] yeah the funding streams that i described earlier are not all the funding streams going into communities. so representative of where the investments are. what i think is important to note about them they're specifically targeted around areas of, you know, most pressing social problems and looking at ways to move the needle where you know, we all know the needle, as maurice just said, has not moved significantly in decades. and a big challenge around that has been really putting resources into programs that are actually effective. so, in many ways what the innovation fund across the government are attempting to do is really get to the that effectiveness question to see where impact can be achieved and to continue to support that. so i think that that is important so we can see more
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of these solutions that are coming up with innovative responses and approaches to poverty. i think, you know, we're talking about investments in infrastructure that can sustain people, not just today and tomorrow but down the road. if it is an overhaul in terms of our education systems, if it is a different way of communities coming together to tackle a many problem, then that is what needs to happen. reform of things as complex as educational systems, that's not going to happen without the kinds of solutions that bring forward collaboration. that bring forward the ownership of people themselves who are relying on these public services. so we're hoping through the social innovation office the fund that are targeting social problems that we can get to more of those but by no means is that a full picture of what's happening across the administration. >> couple of things. i'd add.
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as as i know everybody appreciates we face a tremendously serious deficit and debt situation for the nation that is having a dramatic effect on what the choices being made by congress, the choices by the administration, in its budget. there is, little doubt that the decisions that are made in time after deficit after this magnitude are different than the choices that would be made at a different time. at the same time that does mean for all of us that the issues about looking at effectiveness and how to make programs operate better and how to spur innovation become even more urgent and that's a big part of why you're hearing the emphasis in the discussion here today. just quickly on the tanf
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side i would note that in, it is ultimately up to congress whether it takes up reauthorization this year. if it does choose to do so, we've particularly highlighted the, the need to look at what has been a strikingly positive experience around youth and subsidized employment around the country. the need for a structure that's more responsive in times of economic downturn. and the, the need for a structure that looks at program out comes and doesn't just measure process. >> thank you. on the leading tracking, social media. >> so on those we did come back to the oakland families and did a post-survey about two or three years after they left our project and what we found is that, this is all prerecession, we found that the families continued on this upward
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trend. their income, i think two, three years, down the line was up 60% from what it had been when they first enrolled at baseline. but it wasn't their income. what was really fascinating is the, their sense of control over their lives, the sense of how they were going after and demanding different choices was really clear. it was that change in behavior and expectation which is like when we raised our teenagers we want them to have high expectations. we have high expectations that that sense of expectation and whatever was really driving this whole thing and there's a lot of behavioral studies that indicate that it would sustain once people feel like they're in control of their lives. on the second piece in terms of whether the reporting has an impact, it turned out, i was paying the families because i thought it was intrusive to ask them 230 data points. as it turned out, when they reported back we just had an evaluation finished again. and they reported back that the data system was one of the biggest change agents.
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you will hear tamara on our website talking about how before surviving was a day-to-day thing. she couldn't reflect or really try to focus. but once she was reporting every month, she could see, oh my debt is going down and i'm doing this, whatever. people made akin to like weight watchers. i have never been through weight watchers. i guess whatever you have feedback, there is positive reinforcement or whatever it tells you. the data system, collecting the data, families want the kind of data we talk about all the time. we should tell them all the stuff we know and get their opinions about it. data makes a huge difference to them. last piece on social media, it's huge. we're starting social media into our site now. they have a lot of opinions they want to share with each other. families in san francisco will be flying to boston to families we engaged in boston. there are families in new orleans that want to talk to them. that cross sector means that we don't have to hire staff. they already know one
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another. we jumped from our enrollment jumped 400% when the evaluation was done. it is on our website and our costs dropped 300% in that same period because they were taking care of each other. we don't hire staff. you nominate somebody to come in. you then orient them. you teach them how to do the reporting and you're their counselor. it works much better. >> yeah. thank you very much, maurice and mark and marta for your comments and participation. i feel like there is a lot more to learn here and we're going to stay tuned. we certainly invite you all to look at the papers that are on at and our colleagues. very interesting pieces looking at the policy implications. thank you for your time and thank you for your time participating as well. thank you. [applause]
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>> an uprising in tunisia a little more than a month ago prompted that country's president to leave the country on january 14th. those demonstrations have parked protests throughout the middle east. this afternoon the governor of tunisia's central bank talks about the country's impact on the global economy. you can see live coverage at 3:30 eastern on c-span. tonight here on c-span2, a look at raising healthy children around the world with bono and hell linda gates. then the future of public radio. a panel discussion by conservatives on cutting federal spending. our prime-time line-up begins at 8:00 eastern.
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>> now a former national security advisor to first president george bush. donald gregg is also a former u.s. ambassador to korea and a 31-year cia agent. he spoke to students at williams college in williams town, massachusetts, the school he graduated from in 1951. his talk touches on a variety of international issues he was involved with. it is just over an hour.
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>> good evening. i'm sam crane, the fred green third century professor of political science here at williams. also serve as chair of the international studies program. and i have the pleasure and privilege this evening to introduce our guest, donald gregg. but first let me recognize the organizations that arranged tonight's, tonight's talk. the stanley kaplan program in american foreign policy. the leadership studies program, and the international studies program, all from here at williams college. donald gregg, ambassador donald gregg is a member of the class of 1951 of williams college. he was a philosophy major. when he left williams college, graduated in 1951 he joined the central intelligence agency, the cia
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and started a career there that lasted for 32 years. he held a variety of different posts in different countries, including burma, japan, south vietnam and south korea. in 1979 he served on a national security council staff for the president. and in 1982 he served as the national security advisor for then vice president george h.w. bush. in 1989 he was appointed as ambassador to south korea where he served until 1993. after which, he left government service and took on the position as chairman of the korea society. he currently holds a position of chairman emeritus of the korea society. donald gregg is a great friend and son of williams college. he has been here many times in my time here, given
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lectures, classes in our winter study term. i've met him on several occasions but there's two things i learned just recently about him. one of which shows us the true breadth of his accomplishment in foreign policy and international relations. it turns out that in a 1995 book by tom clancy called, "ops center". there is a character, ambassador of south korea character, fictionalized to be sure. but that character is named gregory donald. in fact it is believed based loosely on our own donald gregg. i also learned just this evening, don gregg's middle name is finney. for those of you who are historians of williams college history you will know one of the great presidents here was james finney baxter. indeed, it is true that there is a long-term ancient
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connection between those families. that shows the depth of don gregg's association with williams college. tonight's, ambassador gregg will speak to the topic of advice to president obama in 2012. a look to the cuban missile crisis of 1962 for what it tells you about presidential leadership and military advice in a crisis. it is an apt topic given that this evening president obama will be providing or giving his state of the union address, which we will broadcast in this room immediately following professor, ambassador gregg's remarks tonight. so if you'd like to stay for that you could. we can see if in fact president obama takes the advice that ambassador gregg is willing to offer. ambassador gregg will speak for about 45 minutes. after which he will take questions. we'll have microphones to
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pass around for people to use for questions time. so please join me in warmly welcoming ambassador donald gregg. [applause] >> thank you. well for somebody from the third century he looks very good. you completely blew my cover and i have to say a little bit more about my career as gregory donald in tom clancy's book. in my first visit to north korea in 2002, i was asked three questions by the north koreans. the first was, why is george w. bush so different from his father? a good question. second, how do you function as a country when you elect people who have nothing in
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common with their predecessor? whenever you have a presidential election your relations with us are turned inside out. a straight comment. then, why don't you understand us better? and i said with paying them a compliment, i said you're what i call the longest-running failure in the history of american espionage and i can say that because i was really part of that failure. i chased you around fruitlessly for a number of decades. and at that point they said, are you wearing your ops center hat? so i said, my gosh, you can't be talking about that book? and they said well of course, we are. and so i said, well i haven't read it but my wife has and would you like her reaction to it? and they said yes, we would be interested. and i said, well she refers to it as an airport-only pocketbook. and i said she really didn't
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mind the fact that i died a heroic death at the end of the book but she was furious that i had a korean mistress. [laughter] so the north koreans got a big kick out of that. well, back to what i had sort of intended to say originally. when i was asked to come up here and give this talk i was delighted to accept and had no idea that the president would be speaking on the same evening. so this is, he is not asked me to come and do this on the same night. it is just a coincidence. but i think it is a happy coincidence. and i am very glad to be able to talk about the issue of presidential leadership as it emerges in terms of dealing with military crises. and i'm very happy to be able to speak about president obama and president kennedy.
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this is an interesting year. this is the midpoint of president obama's first term and perhaps his only term. 50 years ago last week john f. kennedy was sworn into office. president kennedy was the first catholic to become president. he was the youngest president ever elected at the age of 43. he beat richard nixon by a razor-thin margin of 120,000 votes and he raised a lot of doubts in the american voting public. he was young. he was inexperienced. he was a catholic. he was very eloquent. he turned everybody on by his inauguration speech asking not what, have your government do for you, what you can do for your government . .
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>> as these two presidents have made probably the deepest impression on me of any president that has served in the 60 year period, i am delighted to try to draw a few comparisons between them. i've never met president obama, but i did meet president kennedy
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in 1963 when i was part of the first group trained in what was called counterinsurgency in those days. he was a tremendously impressive person to meet, the 30 or so of us who were trained stood in line to shake hands with him. we listened to what he said two people ahead of us. i was behind general joe stilwell's son and kennedy gave him his undivided attention for 20 seconds or so, the same thing happened to me, and i left with a vivid impression of the feel of his handshake, the strength of his clasp. the intensity of his personality. he was an electric personality. but in his presidency he got off to a few bad mistakes early on. he inherited four -- from president and eisenhower the
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plan for the invasion of cuba and the bay of pigs. cuba was the third and a list of eight countries that the brothers had designated as countries where leadership had to be overthrown. i think this was a part of our history where our sense of exceptionalism was particularly strong, and the dulles brothers manifested that very strongly. the first target of their disapproval was iran, and the overthrow of gaza tech and the reestablishment of the shot with regard as a great success of cia's early days. second was guatemala where we installed a bloody minded general over someone who looked to be a little too leftist for our liking your in cuba was
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third. the planning had not gone well at the end of the eisenhower regime, so kennedy inherited that bad planning and he went ahead with it based on some very, i think, unfair and unbalanced briefings by allen dulles and the invasion was a disaster. and enraged castro and turn him solidly against president kennedy. is the next mistake occurred in june of his first year, where when he insisted on going to be in a meeting with khrushchev. he was advised against doing this by senior members of his staff, but he insisted on doing it. and the meeting went very badly. kennedy was astute enough to
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realize he had not done well, and he came back and said to his brother, i've never met anybody like that. we were talking about the possible cost of nuclear war, and i said, 70 million people might be killed, and khrushchev looked at me as if to say so what? and khrushchev came out of the meeting feeling that he was dealing with a young, inexperienced and overmatched president who he could push around. and so the combination of castro's hostility towards us in the wake of the failed invasion, and khrushchev's judgment of kennedy led directly to the soviet decision to place missiles into cuba. the first intimation that the united states had these missiles were going in came from overflights by intelligence gathering aircraft. that started in early october of
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1962. and we immediately went to the soviets and said, are you doing anything with missiles or bombers in cuba? they said absolutely not. and several days after we knew for certain that the soviets were putting missiles and bombers into cuba, the then foreign minister of the soviet union came to washington and flat out lied to the president about what was happening. and so, it was finally convened, the xcom which was pulled together to deal with what we have to do about what the soviets were doing. it was not yet known in the country was going on. and that was really very valuable. for the first six or seven days of the crisis, the secret was
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kept and nobody knew that a crisis was brewing. nobody except people at cia. we were well aware of what was happening. and the contingency planning at cia headquarters was unbelievably crude. the feeling was that the headquarters building would be targeted by one of the soviet missiles. and that it would be accurate enough to completely demolish the building. i was taken to a file storage area in virginia, where certain files were hurriedly being shifted, and i was told if you survive, this is one of the places you can come to perhaps start over. the general words to people in cia was if you survive, try to
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make it to your racetrack in west virginia in charleston. and the feeling in the cia headquarters building was apocryphal. about halfway through the crisis, president kennedy announced what was going on. and in so doing, completely surprised khrushchev who is still involved in shaping some of the missiles and some of the planes to cuba. in the meetings leading up to the revelation, kennedy had a mixed bag of people on his excomm. maxwell taylor was chief of the joint chief -- chiefs of staff. curtis lemay, the dr. strangelove of that wonderful movie, was on the excomm.
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ted sorensen was there. he died last month, and i think was the last surviving member of that group. and the group was divided into two. the immediate reaction when kennedy assembled them and said the soviets are putting missiles into cuba, curtis lemay was immediately on his feet saying, let's bomb them. that was his immediate reaction to that, into another occasion where -- which i will mention later on. kennedy said wait a minute, wait a minute. and said what other options do we have? and through a discussion that went on intensively during the six days, the two options emerged. one was a surprise attack on the missiles and the bombers in cuba, and the other was an
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attempt to set up a quarantine trying to stop additional soviet ships from coming to cuba while negotiations went on to get the missiles removed. there was heated debate, and kennedy was careful to not sure which way he was leaning until on the day when a final decision was made, a general sweeney who was subordinate to curtis lemay was in charge of the tactical air command that would have led all of the airstrike against cuba, said, mr. president, we can attack them but i cannot tell you that we will get all of the missiles before some of them are lodged there i cannot promise you that. and the estimated killing capacity of the soviet missiles at that time, had all been
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launched, was 80 million people. and so that swung kennedy toward the option of a quarantine. and things were continuing to look very bad because there had been meetings with the soviets off line. they had continued to lie about what they were doing. they continue to be in denial. and the question came up, how do we let khrushchev know what we intend to do? and at this time, khrushchev had written two letters to the united states. and the first one had shown that he had a sense of the humanity involved in this crisis, and he had spoken of the millions of dead that would result from a nuclear exchange between our two countries. and i don't know whether kennedy
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had seen anything of this in his meeting with khrushchev, but he was struck by that. but then later came a much tougher letter from khrushchev. continuing the confrontation. but it was kennedy's decision to respond to the earlier letter, the earlier software let her, and just pretend the second harder letter had never been sent. and so, that letter was sent, and it led to the defusing of the crisis. a key factor, militarily, was not the fact that we had more nuclear weapons than the soviet union. the key fact was our ability to mass a quarter of a million men in southern united states and in florida preparing an invasion of
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cuba. and the soviets were unaware that we were doing that. there was no way that they could have opposed that. they did not want a nuclear exchange, because they knew we would retaliate. and so really it was our conventional weaponry and soldiers on the ground that tipped the balance towards khrushchev's decision to back off. and so, kennedy's decision throughout the crisis were right on the mark. in the country breathed a collective sigh of relief. i remember going to bed that night after the missiles -- after khrushchev had replied, and slept well for the first time in two weeks. 20 years later, maxwell taylor, who had been chief of staff at the excomm, on october 5, 1982,
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when the "washington post" wrote an article called reflections on a grim october, and his comments are very, very interesting. he said, there follows six days of seemingly endless secret meetings. of course, in which the excomm members were all of it will, intelligence, determined the limited numbers of alternatives. the alternative favored by the hawk, a group to which i belonged, was to launch an air attack without warning on all the located missiles and i l. 28 bombers that constituted the offensive weapons the president had determined to remove. the does come on the other hand, recommended a partial naval blockade. euphemistically called a quarantine to keep out for the weapons. most of them, however were
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prepared to consider more drastic action if a quarantine proved insufficient. this is the thing that stuns me even today. this is maxwell taylor. i might interject here that during the excomm discussions, i never heard an expression of fear of nuclear escalation on the part of any of my colleagues if at any time we were sitting on the edge of armageddon, as nonparticipants have some time pressure sometimes alleged we were too unobservant to notice it. kennedy had asked curtis lemay who had immediately recommended bombing what will the soviets do, and curtis lemay, based on what i do not know, said they will not retaliate. and that was his decision, and that apparently kept anybody else from even considering the fact that our attack might
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trigger a nuclear escalation. i think kennedy's ability to withstand that kind of advice, and eventually come to a good and successful decision is outstanding. and i think it means that only the president should be in charge of an issue like that because it's only the president who has to consider consequences of decisions made in meetings such as this. taylor goes on to draw lessons. he makes the point that most of the people who were advising kennedy at the cuban missile crisis were the same people who had advised him to go ahead with the bay of pigs, which had been a disaster. and he said in my opinion, the different resulted largely from experience that these officials
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had acquired between crises. second is the importance of recognizing the president must inevitably be the manager of any crisis. he also talked about the necessity for maintaining secrets which allowed the debate to continue without having been leaked, without getting congress in all the hysteria involved. finally, he made the point that it was not our nuclear capacity, but our conventional capacity that had slung the balance. now, i had some interaction with some of these same people in a wargame focused on vietnam, which took place in early 1964. the war in the number was not going well, and so the decision was put forward driven by curtis lemay to start bombing north
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vietnam. and so a wargame was pulled together at the pentagon to discover, to discuss the efficacy of doing that. i was a cia representative on the blue team, which represented the american forces. and we had a heated argument at the working level whether we should or should not start humming north vietnam. -- start bombing north vietnam. i felt it would be useless and argued against the bombing from the beginning. i was supported only by the state department representative. everybody else was all for bombing. and so we were outvoted, and the general in charge of this it all right, mr. gray, will you please sit down and write an intelligence assessment of the effectiveness of the bombing and he didn't tell me to follow the dictates of the vote. he just said right what you think is going to happen. so i did.
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and then superiors, a top level group which included maxwell taylor, director john mcgowan of the cia, and other luminaries came in, and brigadier general said we had heating -- a heated discussion but we decide to go ahead with the bombing. and mr. gregg will tell you how we think that will work out. and so i got up on my hind legs and was about 15 seconds into my presentation when i was skewered by maxwell taylor. and he said, young man, just hush up. and he turned to the general and said what do i hear hear? he said we're going to bomb, here's this guy saying it's not going to work. and the general said that's what he thinks. he's from cia. i can see john the going see john glenn link over or two say who the hell is this guy? but i somehow survived it.
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we went ahead with bombing. and head of the red team played his cards very well. curtis lemay's scenario was that once we started bombing north vietnam, north vietnam would try to retaliate by bombing saigon, that they did not have sufficient aircraft to do that will, so they would call on their chinese allies, and that the chinese would supply them pilots and aircraft to be used to bombing saigon. this would enable lemay to retaliate against china and take out its developing nuclear capacity. well, the wargame was a disaster. the red team retaliated in a very astute way. it did not retaliate militarily.
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it retaliated psychologically, and the impact of bombing not only worked minimally in terms of military context, but it works very badly in terms of world opinion of what we were doing. and curtis lemay grew furious at the final session of the working, and he leaned forward and yelled at general buzz we've had been head of the red team and he said buzz, you, you know god dam well if i bomb your country you're going to bomb mine. and wheeler said, curt, he said, i know that's what you want me to do and that is the last thing in the world i would do. and then lemay said, and i'm sure he said it many times back into the stone age in 12 hours. there was a long silence and then make george bundy said perhaps our problem is that they're too close to the stone age as it is.
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that was the last i saw of those people. but let us shift our focus now to president obama and what he is likely to face in the next couple of years in terms of military decisions of the i think equal consequence, although a slower impact. in the first place, i think that president obama is not going to talk very much about military affairs tonight. he will make an obligatory reference to what's going on in afghanistan and pakistan. he may get a sense or two to north korea, but it's largely going to be about the creation of jobs. and i think he is very smart to do that. he is way ahead of where president kennedy was and where
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lbj was in terms of generalship. i knew all of the three commanders who were in charge of our forces in the non. i worked on that war for four years. general harkins, the first four-star general told me repeatedly we will be out of vietnam with a military victory within six months. that was starting in 1962. general westmoreland capped asking for more troops until his last request has been granted would have been over half a million men fighting in vietnam. that was turned down and congress gradually pulled the plug on funding. the final of the third, final general was general abrams, by far the best of the three. i was given a lunch by the army when i left vietnam after a two or in the field there, and i sat next to a representative. i said general, you have been
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here for a long time. he said yeah, i've been here six years. and i said how do you keep going? for that long. he said i keep learning things. and i said as politely as i could, well, what have you learned lately? and he said, i just finished reading this book by bernard fall about the french defeat called hell in a very small place. i suggest, a great book. he said i now understand what he said. he said the french lost because they failed to politically organize the terrain. my thought was if it took the commander in chief of our armed forces in vietnam six years to learn that, no wonder we were losing the war. i have met general petraeus, and it was a rather humorous encounter at a dinner given in his honor. and i stood in line to shake hands with him, something i don't do very often but i really
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wanted to see what he was like. and i listen to him deal with a society matron who was gushing all over him, and he left her feeling very full of herself and feeling that she had an intimate little discussion. and then he talked with an ancient veteran with ribbons down here and said, i see you are at the battle of chickamauga or something like that. and left that blowing. and so i went up to and i put my head out and its agenda, i was looking for in vietnam but i couldn't find you. and he said, jesus christ, i was in high school. i said i know you were. but we didn't have anybody in vietnam who really understood what was going on, and i want to thank you for picking out men at the colonel level like mcmaster wrote dereliction of duty, and promoting him and having them at your side as you have rewritten our counterinsurgency manuals.
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so i think we have in general petraeus probably the best qualified general we have had since world war ii. he's coping with an extremely difficult situation in afghanistan and pakistan, but i think of all the generals we have had, he gives us the best shot at coming out up there with some kind of a viable situation. i think that the real decisions on what to do in afghanistan and pakistan will come next year. there's a very fine book out on the war. it's called the endless war. it's written passionate which deals with our war with al qaeda, written by peter bergen, and it is very full of the impact of petraeus's thinking. birkin feels that al qaeda has
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been so violent and so much that it is done that it has alienated a lot of modern muslims, and i think that he is -- he feels that we ought to hang on in afghanistan, that we perhaps have a chance at doing something there. the situation in pakistan is getting worse and worse. i have a feeling that the general, general kayani, who is a very fine officer, may step into the breach and once again pakistan may fall under military rule, and that may be the only way to make a decision as to where pakistan is going. is it going to try to play things both ways, support some elements of the taliban, or is it going to take a real stance for paternity which i think kayani would favor, but i don't know that that is going to happen. as obama faces these decisions, he also has a very fine chief of
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staff of the armed forces, mike mullen, who has served india, it and he just called -- who has served in vietnam. and his call for a review of the armed forces as they stand after 10 years of continuous combat. and he is concerned about the impact on the men and women who are fighting. he is concerned about the psychological impact of the generals directedness. i think he is concerned about some indications of neoconservative thinking that appear in some senior officers after they had departed. so he is called i think a very fine conference to be held. but beyond what the individual officials are doing, there are two statements, two philosophies at stake here.
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and that is, what kind of the country do we think we are? what kind of a country do we want to become? one of the opinions is voiced very eloquently i and two in the limits of power. he retired full colonel, lost a son in iraq, now teaching at boston university. and he begins to quote reinhold, the great theologian and philosopher who came up here and spoke at williams when i was an undergraduate. and he says the essence of statehood is locating the point of concurrence between the parochial and the general interest. that's finding something between the national and international common good, where perhaps compromise or cooperation can
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evolve. he again says to the end of history, social orders will probably destroy themselves in an effort to prove they are indestructible. he also feels a sense of specialness, this sense of, the fact that we are above and beyond anybody else, the fact that the world should follow our lead has sort of let us to a sense almost of entitlement. so he feels that our sense of exceptionalism is very dangerous. and that we need in today's world to be more considerate, considerate of the major interests of our major neighbors. and i think we saw the beginning of some of that in obama's meeting with hu jintao last
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week. so are we going to continue to be the exceptional power, where we feel everybody should follow our lead? or are we going to dilute that and move away from a sense of entitlement to more of a sense of moderation and cooperation? that's one philosophy. on the other side, comes a loud and clear statement from the neoconservatives voiced here by robert kagan in an article in the weekly standard dated yesterday. he lists 25 interventions that united states has been involved in since 1898. he said we have been at war for about 42.5% of the last century and decade, and his closing line is, history has provided some lessons. and for the united states, the lesson has been fairly clear.
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the world is better off and the united states is better off in the kind of international system that american power has built and defended. so there you have two starkly differing views of how the united states should proceed, how the united states should proceed itself, how the united states should relate to other powers in the world. and that is the dilemma which president obama is going to have to deal with. i think that he has the qualifications to deal with that effectively. he has very good people working for him. i have mentioned general petraeus. i mentioned admiral mullen. i would mention bob gates, secretary of defense whom i know very well. we worked together in the jimmy carter administration. i would also recommend -- recognize secretary of state
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hillary clinton. so i think we are not going to hear much about this looming crisis tonight. i hope we don't. it's going to give the things we have put in place a chance to work, and i am hopeful that come next year, 50 years after the date -- or the cuban missile crisis that president obama will yield equally well with the crisis that he faces. thank you very much. [applause] >> are the questions? i hope so. >> i'm a freshman.
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you enumerative many other similarities between kennedy and obama. however, there seems to be one big difference how when kennedy was the with the cuban missile crisis, he had a specific enemy and representation -- representative of that enemy he could call up and sent a letter to khrushchev, and khrushchev controlled the opposition. and that's the difference in what obama is doing with in afghanistan and pakistan. how does that difference influence how obama can deal with the situation? >> that's a wonderful point, and it's right on the button. it is what makes the question of dealing with radical is islam so difficult. because niebuhr's search for a point of concurrence my work with china or it might have worked with the soviet union,
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but it doesn't work with osama bin laden. i think we're going to have to look for moderate leaders in other parts of islam. i think we have to watch with great interest and care what is happening in tunisia. i think that we have to watch very carefully what happens in egypt, which i think is bracing for deep unrest. and when secretary state hillary clinton is in yemen, a country to which i have been to twice, which is ripe for all kinds of crises, called on the arab leaders of the world to be more forthcoming and be better leaders of their people, she's putting her finger on exactly what you are talking about. so that's a profound point. it makes all the difference between the two crises, and makes me so glad that obama doesn't have to face it tonight, that he has another year with things that work.
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and this book, the longest war, makes the point that the vitriolic anti-u.s. wave of terrorism may have crested. i don't know whether that is true because there seem to be other strains of it erupting with mr. out of latte speaking to disaffected young muslims in the united states. but i think we've got good people and possible working on this, and i'm still not -- i'm still guardedly optimistic. but your point is an excellent one, thank you. >> thank you very much for the insightful lecture. i am a student from korea. i have a question on another radical leader. like my north neighbor. about north korea. so, i read an article that you have written that maybe you were
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recommended president obama to, like, go for negotiations with north korea. but like, so far we have been trying hard to negotiate with north korea, but north korea -- a bunch of long-range missiles. so there's some speculation without a guarantee of north korean might be verifiable. any sort of negotiation is a waste of time, whatsoever. so i was wondering if you could possibly note on that kind of perspective, what you think about that. >> well, i think we have to negotiate with north korea. i was a friend of richard holbrooke, and i lament his passing. i talked to him about his work with slobodan milosevic whom he said was one of the most reprehensible human beings he
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had ever met, and he said, but i have to negotiate with the man to stop the genocide. and i think we need to negotiate directly with the north koreans. and the current leadership in south korea has undone a number of good things that were accomplished by his two predecessors, with whom i was very close, to summit meetings were held with north korea. a number of agreements were reached at those summit meetings, including something about growing new barriers in the western sea with a killing in the island took place in the sinking of the ship took place. i've been to north korea five times i think that what they are looking for is a guarantee from us that we will not attack them and that they have built nuclear weapons as a deterrent against what they see as hostility on our part. i think that can be diffused. our problem has been, and it was
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reflected in a question that i was asked in my first visit, how do you function as a country when you elect presidents have nothing to do with their predecessor? he was speaking of the fact that president clinton had been invited to pyongyang and almost gaunt, had sent his secretary of state who had 11 hours of discussion with kim jong-il, and yet at the state of the union address 2002, suddenly george w. bush said north korea is part of the axis of evil. they had done nothing different, but in a year they had changed from someone who had almost hosted a president to a country, the bush administration called part of the axis of evil. i think that's been our shortcoming. we say they don't fulfill their obligations. they say you don't give us any continuity in what you say to us. so i am very much for continued negotiations. i am regretful that although
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president obama has not undertaken that, i think that president obama needs a high ranking full-time expert on korea in the white house. he does not have one. he has one of my successors, ambassador steve bosworth, who was dean of the fletcher school, a wonderful able man, but dean of the fletcher school is a full-time job. but he's also special representative for north korea. i don't think that that's more than the job requires. i think he needs to pick somebody full-time in the white house at a very high level, and i hope that is something obama would do. thank you for your question. [inaudible] >> i'm curious about your experience in washington during the vietnam war. you mentioned when you spoke to david petraeus, where were you in the '60s when we needed you. and that's surely the case but
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there were people even in the late '50s and '60s who understood the need for the political take care of the political aspect of the struggle there. i'm just wondering if you could comment on edward lansdale and the failure of the administrations, i guess, kennedy and johnson, to bring him really in and that part of the story. >> lansdale had a magnificent success of dealing with the philippines. he helped them bring the hook, insurgency into a remarkably quick and. he was in vietnam but he did not have the access that he had developed from the philippines. south vietnamese were wary of him, and he never delivered, develop any of the sort of influence or access that he had had in the philippines which had made him so valuable. we tried but the vietnamese were very different from the
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filipinos and lansdale was just not able to perform in vietnam what he had been able to perform in the philippines, but we tried. he just failed. >> hi. just a drawing on your experience at cia, what do you think, one of enhanced interrogation techniques that are being employed right now, like waterboarding, maybe some other things? and two, the drone strikes on afghanistan, pakistan border that killed so many civilians? >> i am absolutely against enhanced interrogation. i have written about it. i have worked against and both vietnam and korea where i encountered it. i was appalled when it was employed by the bush administration, and this book, the longest workout makes the point that it's really got us
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nothing in addition to what we're able to obtain binaural interrogation. matters or methods. and i am really deeply, deeply sorry full that we employed those techniques. i taught a course here last year on making sense of cia, and one of the guest speakers i had was the chief of station in tehran when the embassy was seized. and the iranians knew that this man had been chief of station for cia, and so they kept him in isolation. and they said we want you to tell us that your orders were to overthrow the home amy and bring back the shah. he said those were not my orders and i will not tell you what was not true. so they tortured him. beatings with a rubber hose
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prolonged stress positions, darkness. he would not confess. they then went to him and said we're going to take it out and shoot you and filmed the shooting and send the film for your wife and your mother. and he would not confess. and if for some reason, the conditions eased, and on the day that reagan was sworn in, he was taken to the airport and he felt that perhaps everybody else was going to be released, but not him because he had not seen a single american for the 444 days he had been held. and in the room at the airport where he was waiting, the door opened and in came a man who had been his torturer and he had in his hand, not a rubber hose but a heavy rope with a not on it. and the man said to tom, we've thought about what we did to you, and we've come to regret
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some of it, so here, you can do to me what i did to you. and he was able to sit at the time we don't do things like that, thank you very much. and he was let go, and he felt it was a triumphant ending for him to the end of that. and i have worked against torture. i was just appalled we have done it. it is totally counterproductive to the individuals involved and to the nation as a whole. i think the second part of the question on the drones is a very tricky one, and i fear that it may be that that is what we are reduced to doing if we cannot find a stable societal base, either afghanistan or pakistan. it's a very effective deadly but inhumane method. it cuts deeply both ways, and i
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spoke to a class today in which a palestinian student participated. i asked him how he felt about it, and he was dead set against it. so nobody likes it. it works in a certain way. i think, but it is vastly preferable in my way of thinking to enhanced interrogation. but thank you for asking that because i'm glad to get on the record on that issue. thank you. >> you said that president obama wouldn't have to basically deal with a viable solution in afghanisafghanistan until about a year out. could you gives more specifics on what you imagine that stability might look like? especially given that the entire u.s. military expenditure or year is about twice the gdp of the entire country of afghanistan. >> i think that the council on foreign relations has just done a study on what is going on in
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both afghanistan and pakistan. and it is, it makes the point that there needs to be a very tough-minded assessment made in august -- made a vision as to how we are doing -- made this year as to how we are doing. and how we assess we are doing should have an immediate effect upon our troop levels. and various options are discussed their work perhaps going to what they call a smaller footprint in both afghanistan and pakistan, meaning fewer troops on the ground, more trainers, less combat, and probably a greater reliance on the drones. but it's very well thought out, but the disruption in pakistan is particularly disheartening at this point. the governor who was assassinated by a smirking guard because he had spoken out against blasphemy laws is really
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disheartening, and it shows in pakistan there is an upsurge of fanaticism that is going to make it very difficult for the central government to cope with it. and that's what i think that there is the possibility of a military coup led by general kayani if something, might come into possibility. [inaudible] [inaudible] >> i was just wondering if you think obama could deal with this issue, which is so obviously up in the air. could he back away from the idea that america will not tolerate a nuclear program and try to work out some other --
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>> that's a tough question, james. it's sort of above my pay grade. i don't know what he's going to do. i don't know what he's going to do on it. i think -- well, i think, i think that everything possible should be done short of military intervention in terms of air strikes into iran. and i'm very interested in this new thing of some kind of a virus that has set back developments by a couple of years. i'm all for that kind of thing. i think we need to keep trying to talk to iran, because ahmadinejad is not the most popular iran has had. there are many iranians that are not happy with where things are going. i think we need to keep trying to reach out to them and try to raise whatever we can in the way of opposition within iran. that may not be good enough, but that would certainly be where i would put my vote at this point.
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>> thank you for your excellent lecture, and you talked about the option of quarantine over bombing, and the role of america as a player in facilitating cooperation other than driving the rule of the world. and i'm curious if there is any prerequisite or precondition that through negotiation or discussion takes place. going back to north korea's issue, i'm south korean and deeply worried about their military actions these days. and kim jong-il who is the successor of kim dynasty is not only military leader, but also took the lead in civilian attack on the either. so i'm curious in this case,
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what would be from your experience prerequisite for the negotiation or cooperation began, is my question. >> my answer is going to be rather impolite. how do you know that kim jong on had a lead role in the shelling of the island? that's part of what i call the demonizing foreign leaders that we don't like. we did it to ho chi minh, whose life we saved at the end of world war ii. he reached out to us countless times asking for recognition. we refuse and we fought a war that we should have never fought. i think that we also demonized saddam hussein, a man who deserved demonizing, because we thought he was such a bad guy we said of course he is nuclear weapons and, of course, he has been in bed with al qaeda. so we can't prove either of those things, and we will invade iraq and they will find the
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nuclear weapons and they will find a prove that he had been in bed with al qaeda. but knew were true. the process of demonizing kim jong-il and now his son has reached a fairly high tempo. a year ago i wrote vice president biden urging that kim jong to be invited to the united states for an orientation. he spent a couple of years in switzerland. he speaks some english. he was a basketball fan. his classmates said he was a fairly regular guy. i thought at that point in the summer of 2000 within a good chance to bring into the united states where he could learn some things about us that he couldn't learn from pyongyang and we did learn some things about him that we can't learn sitting here. that was not done. the democratic answer to me as to why they hadn't done it was that the republicans would have laughed them out of town if they had done it. but i am all for that kind of move towards north korea. i love the koreans. i worked with him since the
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korean war, and the people in north korea are not that different from people of south korea. so excuse me if i didn't impolite, but that's what i believe. [inaudible] >> thank you for your speech. i was curious, what do you see as possibly the last 20 years the biggest failings of american presidencies, president in regard to korea, the last 20 years and its biggest success either diplomatically or culturally, politically? >> i think the biggest failure was a complete turnaround from the end of the clinton administration to the beginning of the bush administration from invitation to bill clinton to visit pyongyang to george w. bush condemning them as part of the axis of evil. i think the biggest success was secretary, former secretary of
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defense negotiations on the north korea's missile issues, which was solved well enough so that general rock was invited to the united states, was hosted by vice president gore on the top floor of the state department. and it was proved that sustained negotiation by high level americans can work with north koreans. but we have not given them a high enough level participation and we have not given them be sustained length of negotiations to be effective in dealing with them. >> it has gotten to the point where older men, remember how, absolutely horrible world war ii was, are dying out. do you think we're getting too far away from world war ii so people who are running countries now, politicians of various
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countries, don't remember how awful that war was and they're getting kind of careless and we are throwing bombs around, marches industries, it sounds like we're getting ready for work world war iii. >> it reminds me of two things. when i was an undergraduate here there was a professor named fred schuman. he had been born in germany and he used to say every year i was born before world war i. i survived world war ii, and i expect to be killed in world war iii. which showed a number of people out there it's one of the reasons i went into the cia. i think we're not getting away from that because of the extraordinary writing that is going on. there's a new book out just called war by sebastian younger, who wrote the perfect storm. he was embedded in afghanistan with a platoon that was in one of the most inaccessible
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godforsaken places in afghanistan. auntie dramatizes absolutely riveting detail what life in combat is like. and it makes it clear that what emerges from that is the devotion of the men in combat to saving their brothers, and that for some of them when they come back, civilian life doesn't offer the same kick and they reenlisted if you saw the film "the hurt locker," you saw that happening. so i think if you're open to reading books like that, it is a clear reminder of how horrible war is. but i take your point, and i know that people who actually were in work don't like to talk about it but they remember it as you remember it but i think that we are fortunate that the embedded reporters are doing extraordinary jobs or any home to the united states, people what war today is really like.
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[inaudible] >> how important secrecy was and making sure that negotiations went well. how do you think that the recent events including wikileaks and other major leagues -- leaks will have, how this will have an effect on our delay for negotiation is secrecy is compromised so frequently? >> there has been some private -- i think the quality of american diplomacy has been shown quite clearly in the way we've conducted business, but it surely has had a chilling effect on a lot of people are talking with. and if they no longer can feel that they can speak to us in
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secrecy and incompetence, they are not going to speak to us in confidence and we are going to learn less and less about the people we are dealing with. so on balance, it's a very bad thing. and i think we ought to do all we can to struggle. the difficulty with that is it can lead toward a tendency toward over secrecy, towards overclassification where everything is classified. and so there's a balance that needs to be struck, and i think that the wikileaks thing is very unfortunate in itself, and even more unfortunate because it may cause an over reaction towards overclassification, over secrecy and a lack of transparency. [inaudible]
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>> what seemed like a trial -- [inaudible] >> several articles appeared in certain places about the tremendous mineral wealth of afghanistan, and the problems with infrastructure, no roads and stuff to get to it. and it seemed like -- [inaudible] >> here's another justification for going into afghanistan. made we can get the public opinion to rally behind that. a week later, not a keep. -- keep. how much is going to happen is actually political in nature, and how much is going to be driven by, you know, potential profits for large multinational corporations?
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>> i think the more progress we are able to make and sustain in afghanistan, the more ability we have to talk with afghans who see themselves as having a potential as a business entity. the more easily that kind of consideration can come in as a plus factor. but i think until we are able to have that kind of dialogue, which is extremely difficult today with the pervasive atmosphere of corruption, which brought everything that we're doing in afghanistan, that kind of thing is going to be at the edges and it's going to be sort of the prize for her radical efforts on the part of unscrupulous people. so i think that's the best we can say. it has the potential of great good in afghanistan, if
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afghanistan and move toward a greater degree of normalcy in which business development can take place, free of the fear of instant assassination and death. .. >> well, the fact that i spent two weeks in turkey with you and
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ann and various others -- [laughter] is a real plus in my thinking about the future of islam because we saw in turkey a functioning country with a middle class, a country that unlike egypt relishes its own past because it has the money to take the busses to go to see the monuments of the past which the egyptians do not have. i think europe has blown it in terms of its reluctance to bring turkey into the e.u.. we were shocked in our brief stop on the way back to see the prejudice against turkey because of various population shifts there. i think that if turkey were able to get involved more with the
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e.u., it's potential for -- its potential for reaching out to afghanistan would be greater. i'm not smart enough to know whether turkey as a nato member has any troops in afghanistan or not. that is probably a key decision as to what role they want to play, and they may issue involvement there feeling after nato is evicted, perhaps turkey can move in. there's the best i can do on that. thank you very much for all of your questions. [applause] >> an uprising in tiew knee sha -- tunisia limit more than a month ago prompted the president to leave that country. that sparred protests within the middle east. they talk about the country's
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impact on the global economy. you can see live coverage at 3:30 eastern on c-span. tonight on c-span2, the impact of raising healthy children around the world and the future of public radio and cutting federal spending. our prime thyme lineup -- prime tine line begins at 8 p.m.. you can listen in the baltimore area and nationwide on xm satellite radio or go online at
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it's available as an iphone app and you can download as a app. >> each day the canadian house of commons questions the prime minister and his cabinet on issues they are facing. we'll show you highlights from recent questioning periods. they fielded questions on border security and the u.s. tax imposed by the u.s. obama administers can citizens
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traveling by air or sea. this half hour is provided by cpac, canada's political action channel. they question the cabinet on issues of the day. in this 25 minute program, cabinet fielded questions on border policy and a u.s. tax imposed by the obama administration on canadians traveling to the united states by air or sea and also whether they will freeze the assets of the former tunisia president. the event is curtesy of cpac, canada's cable public affairs channel. >> nearly 3 million canadians are taking care of loved ones in their home. 2 thirdses are woman below
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$45,000. this government says it would be "reckless to offer hep." instead they blow $6 billion on extra tax cuts for the biggest and wealthiest 5% of corporations, why main street ahead of families, mr. speaker, and why do they hide it like a state secret? [applause] >> let there be no doubt that the leader has a plan to hike taxes in canada. he has openly and unambiguously calling for a $6 billion tax increase. the liberal leader is demanding his new tax be voted in the next budget. if we don't raise taxes, he'll call for an early license. that's bad for the economy and bad for canada, mr. speaker. [applause] >> it just doesn't add up.
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corporate tax cuts go to the biggest 5% of cay canadian businesses whose tax rates have been cut already by 35% and already competitive. for small business, mr. speaker, there is no tax cut, only a tax increase because conservatives are slapping a heavier job killing payroll tax on every employer and employee in this country. why the double standard? why the unlimited for the privileged few, but nothing for small business or for families? [applause] >> order, order. the honorable government host leader. >> they have spoken up in favor of our job creation taxation policy and spoken out clearly against the liberal leaders' plan to increase taxes by $6 billion. this is a wreckless tax increase, mr. speaker, that will stop the recovery in its
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tracks. does the liberal leader call himself a tax incentive liberal? [applause] >> mr. speaker, this government refuses to give answers about their 10 projects, their big wreckless spending schemes, $16-$21 billion or more for stealth fighter jets, $10-glr 13 for u.s. style megajails, extra corporate tax cuts for the privileged few, but nothing for small business, nothing for care givers, nothing for early learning, for students or for skills? why don't hard pressed families make it on to the conservative agenda? [applause] >> mr. speaker, our test project is job creation for economic growth. one thing -- [applause] one thing on this sides of the house is the plan to block this government and raise taxes by $6
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billion on the heels of the budget. it's wrong for canada. we know that low taxes are a bank for jobs, investment, and opportunity and raising $6 billion in taxes as the liberal leader has us do kills hope, opportunity, and jobs. >> mr. speaker, it took less than 24 hours for switzerland to freeze accounts of mubarak. family members of ben ali are here in canada for weeks, and we don't know whether canada has frozen their assets, is the government able to tell us whether canada has frozen the assets of members of the ben ali entourage? >> there's a precondition, mr. speaker, and i've said this many
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times to my colleagues. the request has to come from the tunisian government. in the case of i gent, it came from the egyptian government from a number of countries as my colleague mentioned, but the request has to come from the tunisian government. we will continue to work closely with tunisian authorities and my colleague, the justice minister, is looking at all options, and we will follow this matter with the same attention which i've already referred to. mr. speaker, here's another example of misinformation from this government. minister of foreign affairs suggested to the house that there has been no request for tunisian authorities to have canada freeze the assets of ben ali or his family members, but that's untrue. how can the minister deny the numerous requests made to the
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canadian government to do what was needed to do to freeze the assets of ben ali? >> the honorable member of foreign affairs. >> i've been clear in answering my colleagues questions. tunisian authorities have taken steps. we encourage them to take steps so that we could develop options together to provide for a freeze of the assets of those who are unwelcome in canada. >> how can the minister maintain his version of the fact that there was no request when there's communique from the tunisian saying, "various steps have been taken by the embassy with canadian authorities to freeze and subtract the assets
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held by diposed president ben ali and his family." what more does the president need to proceed with the freeze of the assets on the family? >> honorable minister and colleague, if he was to look over the transcript from yesterday, he would see that he was started by talking about egypt and with respect to egypt i said we still hadn't received any requests, but i went on to testify that we are willing to work together with tunisian authorities to freeze the as at the times of those -- assets of those who are unwelcomed in canada. >> when the foreign affairs minister answered earlier that the question yesterday about freezing ben ali's assets were not clear, yes or no, is canada
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going to freeze the assets? the minister cannot pretepid that he -- pretend he didn't understand the question because the answer i said many times the response has to come from the tunisian government and since he knows it has come from the government, how is the fact he still hasn't done anything? >> i indicated, mr. speaker, and because the colleague didn't read the full preamble, it clearly referred to egypt, and i said that's the first step of the country asking us to intervene. in that respect, as i've been saying for some days now, some weeks now, we are working very closely with the tunisian government to develop options to freeze the assets of those who are unwelcomed in canada.
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>> let me start my preamble over with egypt. switzerland, they froze the mubarak family's assets. i'm going to go to tiew knee sha -- tunisia. i hope you can follow me. they asked for the assets to be frozen. can you answer about ben ali and tunisia? [applause] >> order. i'll try to bring the block leader back down to more acceptable level. if he wants to quote the preamble, the preamble was about egypt. that's not what he did a few moments ago. if he can take his head of the sand, maybe that would do some good. >> mr. speaker, the
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parliamentary budget officer before the finance committee condemned with secrecy and say they invoke cabinet confidence to justice withholding documents that are essential to his work and ours, and the expenditure reduction plan is an example. when will you get it through your head that the basic principle is parliament that authorizes spending? will the government stop hiding its expenditure reduction plans from us? >> the honorable president of the treasury board, mr. speaker, it's an interesting question because just yesterday i had another meeting with the parliamentary budget officer, and i said if there's any document that in his opinion is hard for him to get, all he has to do is give me a call, and we'll see if there's any
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documents, but there are also regulations that are established here in the house, so he just has to give me a call to get those documents. >> well, he may be able to have a beer with kevin page, but the lists have been known for a long time. kevin page said the budget needs greater transparency as the government did in 2005 and 2006, the government should release a break down of cuts by department. that's information that we need to do our job. why is that information now suddenly secret or confidential? what's the government trying to hide? its incompetence, its inability? all the above? >> general president of the treasury board, mr. speaker, there was no fear yesterday because we changed policies from
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the previous government on alcohol and hospitality, but also, mr. speaker, the officer said just yesterday that our plan to reduce the deficit is advanced for $5 billion. that was not our opinion, but his opinion that we're making headway that we're ahead of schedule, so he has the plans. [applause] >> the conservatives are shutting down the office in windsor. it's a variety of conservative minister of 400 kilometers away weakening the cbs means more drugs and guns crossing the border getting on to our streets. why are they putting political gain ahead of public safety? will they explain the decision and take responsibility for the partisan interference?
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[applause] >> the honorable minister of public safety. >> mr. speaker, the border services agency announced that merging the administration offices would be done to increase sufficiency and save taxpayer money. they have the location for the new regional headquarters office. this was the decision made, and i support the selection of fort eerie. [applause] >> mr. speaker, american natives need more than ever reassuring with respect to the security of the border, but the conservative government is cutting border crossings and in the eastern townships. they will be reduced and three classes will be simply cut as well as four custom offices.
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when will this government reason and give up on its plan which would help their economic development? [applause] >> law of propaganda continues. careful consideration was given to cbs's ability to provide continued services as well as in the proximity of the current port of entry. they have 1200 service points across the nation and there's over 91 million travelers annually. jameson sees 12 travelers a day, and no commercial vehicles. there's a port of entry 12 kilometer distance. he sees an average of 56 travelers a day. >> with forcing documents or hiding them all together from canadians, they are conceiving
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canadians, operating on an agenda of disacception. when asked for the corporate tax cuts, the conservatives said, no, and refused to provide the documents to parliament. why are they still voting parliament and trying to hide the true costs of their right wing agenda of canadian taxpayers? [applause] >> order. >> mr. speaker, the question is why is that honorable member attempting to hide the true admission as canadian federation. sit in the house and claim that the organization remitted 12 businesses from all across canada supported his $6 billion tax increase on job creators. we found out only moments later from katharine swift that that was not the position of the csi.
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[inaudible] >> mr. speaker, our american neighbors summoned the prime minister to discuss a secret agreement on border security. this is an agreement that concerns canadians. what are the conservatives doing? closing three border crossings by april. can the leader say clearly, yes or no, that closing these ports will -- [inaudible] >> there's 1200 service points across canada and over 91 million travelers annually. quebec sees an average of 12 travelers a day and no commercial vehicles and it's there's a 24/7 port of entry 12 kilometers.
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another sees 12 travelers a day, and three commercial vehicles. >> mr. speaker, they support from canada -- [inaudible] would the minister in the national cooperation update the house on the progress of the $ 250 million of matching funds the government has to make good? >> the honorable minister of -- [inaudible] >> order please, the honorable minister has the floor. order. >> thank you very much, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i am proud to report today on our work in haiti. as you know, canada responded in ways of which the commitment of two-thirds has been dispersed, and we should continue to work
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with the commission and the haitian government on behalf of the haitian people to improve their quality of life. >> mr. speaker, a minister and lobbyist should never start with the words, here's a bag full of cash. [laughter] this is holding a risky fundraiser for the minister he lobbied, here's a sack full of cash, minister, how about that clean energy? that's enough to make him blush easy. the lobby commissioner and my question is simple. why is she still in the front row after the shake down stunt trying to shake down well- connected conservative lobbyists? >> she is in the cabinet because she's an outstanding minister. [applause] they said in a report, "the minister did not cause the
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conflict of interest act or the house of commons, and went on to say, mr. speaker, that this minister was not involved in the recruitment of the volunteers in the organization of the fundraising, over therefore didn't accept services or contribution. she has followed all the rules, and we are proud of her work. >> mr. speaker, underminding our provisions and the conservatives are contributing to the impoverishment every time they talk to americans. they are introducing $5.50 for any canadian boasting they go to the states by plane or by boat. how do we get to this? the honorable minister of foreign affairs.
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[applause] >> mr. speaker, at a time when the global recovery remains frag gill, -- fragile, we feel it's in the best interest of both our countries to sign solutions that will increase the cancellation of goods and persons and what the president of the prime minister decided on two weeks ago is for prosperity. mr. speaker, what this idea of an entry fee is only, it's just a job's idea right now. > mr. speaker, they have been exempted from paying entry fees to our neighbors. this exemption was based on our exceptional relationship with the united states. they are best friends and main trading partners. the idea of doing away with the exemption retorts a dee
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tieruation in our relationship with our neighbors, and it's the first piece of bad news since the prime minister's present. what is the need of the prime minister protecting our foreign interests? >> mr. speaker, i think my colleague was mistaken when he said that our relationship with our american neighbors is at the lowest point. he may recall the relationship between the liberal government and the americans. i would say that this is -- that we're at a stage talking about the budget of 2012 and the 2011 budget hasn't even passed yet. [applause] >> the cyberattack on the canadian government is disturbing. while the conservatives down play this attack, it is obvious
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they didn't take the threats seriously. they were able to infect the very departments that hold the pursestrings of the nation just weeks before the budget and also the department of national defense, and we still don't know if anything else has been compromised. mr. speaker, will the government tell us what departments were infiltrated and what was the damage caused? [applause] >> the honorable minister of public safety. >> mr. speaker, we do not comment on the details of security-related incidents. our government, however, takes threats seriously and measures are in place to address them. i would point out that the next face of the economic -- phase of the economic plan is still in development and advised that budget security was not compromised. >> mr. speaker, it's obvious this caught the conservatives completely unprepared. cyberthreats like this are not the work of suburban kids in their rooms, but are sophisticated and organized. none of this should be a surprise to the government.
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they were warned times before including by the auditor general in a report years ago. we have seen similar attacks on the u.s. and u.k., and they took measures to protect themselves against such crimes. mr. speaker, instead of bureaucrats working in star bucks for free wi-fi, what steps are being taken to prevent this from happening again? [applause] >> it appears this member finally woke up to this issue. we've been talking about it for quite some time. secure cyberspace is critical for building canada's economic advantage. that's why we are investing $90 million over five years including increased investment in around the clock protection center to find hackers and threats. i said that in the news release last october. [applause] . >> mr. speaker, after every deal wee,


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