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tv   Book TV  CSPAN  December 18, 2011 8:00pm-9:00pm EST

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not going to make 20 lines of macs, but four. that focus, but then when he nails it and gets that right, at the top of the list is maybe consumer devices, products, and what he does is he realizes that by having end-to-end control of the hardware and software, you can create a digital hub to put your camera connected by computer and create dvds, and the one thing he screwed up slightly was he didn't -- he wanted a tray slot in the new imac, and he was furious when -- i'm sorry -- he wanted one of those pure slots, and when they put a try in, he was furious and made them eventually change it to just a slot, but it meant you couldn't burn music cds when pan sonic and others came out with that, and he was so focused, the notion of focus,
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focus, focus, he was focused on video and idvd, and he calls up adobe saying you have to make your, you know, video editing software for the new mac os. .. came down and said microsoft, the people of adobe said, no, you have too small of a market share, and he never forgave adobe, which is why flash doesn't work on your i. a but the mark of a true genius of a company is not just when you think of things first, burt when you actually fail to think of something first, can you leapfrog, catch up? and so he realizes he had gotten aced out of the music business. that others were making cd burner trays and people were -- all of us were making -- downloading music from napster and making play lists and
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burning cds and you couldn't do that well on the apple. so he had to leapfrog and says we're going to make a perfect end-to-end thing with a juke box software, which is itunes, the store itself, and when they start making the ipod, he makes it so simple because it's integrated. you can put the complexity on the mac or the itune software so the device itself is not a complicated mp3 players. you could just look at it with the track wheel and it was intuitive, and he kept saying i want to be able to get wherever i want, whateverson want, in three clicks and i want it to be intuitive, and he drove them until the ipod becomes perfect and that is when he leapfrogs and does the music, but it takes apple from being apple computer -- they even changed the name to just apple -- into
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being in the digital hub business. first with dvds and video. then really big with the ipod and music, and the ipod is hugely successful so he starts to worry. what's going to kill it? and re realizes people putting music on their phones will kill it. so focuses and does the iphone, and does it at first -- they did two versions of the iphone, one with sort of an ipod modified with a track wheel which wasn't very good for a phone. and then with johnny ives and many other people, and goaded on by microsoft and an engineer there that steve didn't like -- this notion of a touch screen technology, and when he finally sees how the touch screen can work, he says that's how we're going to do the iphone. so you have a series of consumer devices from the decade beginning beginning in 2001, most prominently the ipod, the
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iphone, and the ipad, the totally transform industries. >> and statement he is bending other industries in the direction of his -- >> the music industry. >> the music industry, disney. >> retail -- >> retailers. >> he can't abide he is making these products and comes up with the next to of apple store, which is not just a store but a whole branding exercise. that notion of bending industries for the ipod and itune store to work you had to convince seven record companies to put all their music on and disaggregate albums and sell the songs for 99 cents initially. and the music companies had their own press play and they were doing their consortium.
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soapy had done the walkman, a great music division. none want to come aboard, and steve personally is like bringing the itune software to the time warner building, showing it to roger ames at warner music, getting him aboard, and then getting doug morris at universal, finally encircling sony. no other ceo would have been so passionate about just going at people until they finally surrendered, and sony is the last holdout. there's a great story that andy lack tells me. he has to put sony music in but the one thing that steve wants is all of dylan. because he and woz found every bootleg tape, totally dylan fan natics. the sandarac of steve's life. dylan is a sony artist.
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so he wants to do all tracks of dylan as a virtual digital set you can buy for $199. andy at sonny says, no, i'm going to jab it to him. we need leverage. steve calls bob dylan, bob dylan, slightly spacey, doesn't deal with it, hismark, all trying to figure out -- steve jobs talked him into it. andy lack finally says to bob dylan, i will write you a check for one million if you'll stay out of the itune store with that box set. and dylan -- i hate to say it because i love dylan -- takes the money, bought year lan diandy lack moved out of sony and dylan's box set not only goes on the itune store, dylan does an ipod ad with silhouettes and dylan wearing the cowboy hat, and it helped
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dylan. he debuted with an album at the top of the charts because the ad slow introduced him to a new generation. >> you look skeptical about the questions. >> i'm not skeptical. my expression meant to say where do i start. i want to ask you one more question about the final chapter. you write, if reality did not comport with his will, he weigh nor it, as he had done with the birth of his daughter and would do a few years later when diagnosed with cancer. the question people wanted most to answer was why when he was firs diagnosed, kid he undertake all these natural nonmedical solutions. >> two sides to steve jobs at all times. whether it's his personal life, cancer, professional life, the
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products he makes. there's the counterculture alternative, romantic, sensibility of steve, and there's the hard core engineering scientific side of steve, and the cancer was no different. both sides kick in and he spends a lot of time wrestling with the two alternatives. wrestling with alternative treatment and diets and also, as i say in the book, didn't get as much, having his dna sequenced, having targeted therapies done. unfinal takes some months before he does what he does in every other aspect of his life, is find the perfect sin sin synthesis of something that is scientific and comports with his alternative view of things. so it attacked longer -- i don't know. it was implied had he gotten operated on right away or something he might have stopped the cancer.
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we don't know that. cancer spreads in mysterious ways. so it's quite likely thea -- the cancer had already spread but it was somewhat typical of steve to say, the normal rules don't apply to me. i'm going to look at this from both an alternative viewpoint as well as a deeply rooted scientific viewpoint. everything in some ways he does in his life ends up being a synthesis of that hippie rebel with the guy who in the hewlett-packard geek explorers club. >> i'm going too start with a couple questions now. what was the greatest misperception about steve jobs in your mind that was addressed or maybe that you could address in this book? >> i think the greatest misconception, right when the
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book first came out and people were reading it -- the pet lance and impatience of his character was a weird thing. his own personality was integrated, including with his profession and the products he made, just like apple products are integrated so that perfectionism, or bratty temperment. that's not a disconnected thing that has nothing do with the passion for perfection or the product, you know, drive that he had. so i try -- that's what the last chapter is about -- to show how all of this was woven together so that the -- words like petulant and bratty are also maybe a little ufa mystic.
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>> i was at time inc., and at one time fortunate was doing a story involving his cancer because they reported the cancer treatment first, not my book. and i was like -- steve was furious and called up the editor and the editor in chief. and he says to the editor of fortune, wait a minute. you have discovered i'm an ass --hole? why is that news. he was very self-aware he could be a strong cup of tea. >> yeah. >> this is an interesting question. did he have to be who he was in that way to do what he did? >> that's the question i'm most asked. kid he have to be that way? did you have to be that way to get done what you did? and i'm going to back off a little from giving you a great answer because i'm a story teller. i had to write about the person
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who was in front of me. that's who we has so i wrote the story of him. this is not a how-too book. this is not a manual for, you have to be this way to run a company. of yours you don't. very nice people run very successful companies and there are also total assholes who are total failures at running companies. that said, i am not trying to say here's the way to do it like steve did. i am trying to write a book about a flesh and board human being who i didn't know all of aspects, but when i knew them, i tried to tell the story, and part of the story is being driven or -- and having not been that way, i doubt he would have been as successful. on the other hand, i suspect there were other ways to get things done at times, but when
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you say, did he have to be that way? my only job is to tell you the way he was because i'm just a biographyer, not a preacher or management consultant. >> do you think that question will be answered with the sort of the luxury of distance and time? >> yeah. i mean, i guess -- christianson is another great management guru could probably do a case study of, you can take all the jack welchs and say -- "60 minutes" was saying, did he have to be so hard, so tough? i said, wait a minute. you work for don hewitt. don hewitt was a genius. he was also a real pain in the butt. we all know people like that. i guess you can do a study 0 nice bosses, tough bosses, jerks, and correlate it somehow with the regression analysis and say who is more successful. that's way above my pay grade. >> are you writing the screen play and would you choose george
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clooney? [applause] >> i am not -- the reports of the movie are premam -- premature. >> do you see george clooney -- >> i am not a movie person. steve went over every frame of pixar movies the way he went over every curve over the first macintosh and he would say something about finding nemo, and i remember having to go back and quickly download the movies because i just don't know -- it's one of my blind spots. when i was editor of time i was famous for make really bad movie cover calls. so, asking me who should play what in a movie is -- >> all right. we'll give you a pass. i'm going to read you the preface. is says on behalf of historians, what were steve's stipulations
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about using the interviews you collected for the book and where will they ultimately be deposited. >> most or notes, some transcript of the four or final formal interviews he gave me. my notes will go somewhere. maybe we should talk. but not for another 20 or 30 years. and not -- i mean, partly because steve, and then the people around steve, would say things that could be very hurtful, or they would say -- you know, say something just offhasn't, especially steve, about certain things, and there are things i didn't put in the book and things i would have to take out of my notes just because they were unnecessary to understanding steve and probably in the interests of kindness, you don't want to hurt people with certain comments.
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so, i will some day go through my notes and -- if it's the 20-year rule, maybe some of the things will have gone by the wayside. >> someone picked up on the quote about great artists steal, and said, he said that, yet he reseptember bill gated and google and many others for stealing from apple as he saw itful how did his zen self recognize this. >> steve was not an expert at reconciling conflicting things. anderson and many others have great quotes about people having conflicting thoughts at the same time. steve was totally ballistic first at bill gates and microsoft for ripping off, as he put it, the mac --
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macintosh, and then how he felt android and google had ripped off the apple mobile operating system. did he -- no. he didn't try to reconcile that. but i will say he didn't rip off xerox. there was a final deal. xerox invested a million dollars in apple there was an exchange of technology. i think -- he has some right to feel that he came up -- or apple came up with the beautiful macintorn operating system and pretty much copied by windows, and likewise, the mobile operating system. you can argue, as for ten years in court -- they were in arming about whether you can copyright the look and feel, whether there's an intellectual property theft there. but i can understand why he was
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pissed off. >> in his mercurial -- a great story about his -- mercurial, i love the word. >> and dictatorial style. how was he able to engender such loyalty -- let's go to mercurial. he wasmer curlal. so he is showing off the next computer at symphony hall here when it's been unveiled and he helped invent digital book outside but he put a thesaurus and shakespeare's book, and he is showing off the thesaurus and he says sometimes i am calmer curial and he says, let me look it up and it says changeable moods and then it described another word, somebody who doesn't have enough emotions. and he says, maybe it's not so bad to be mercurial. so i think he understand his
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mercurial nature and that was part of who he was. and having said that. i've now forgotten the second half of the question. >> how did he engender such creativity -- >> oh, look. when you're creating a machine as insanely great as that, even if you're in the middle of the night saying, this code is -- sucks, you got to make it better, by the time you've created as an engineer the original macintosh, you're loyal to the genius and the vision there. and people who have strong personalities either can turn people off or they can say, hey, i got inspired here, and got to be on a team, and, look, the proof is -- i hate cliches like this, proof in the pudding -- but look at the team he even has at apple. if he is that bad 0 a boss, why do so many a players stay with
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him? because he like to be on a team with a players. if he ran off the b players that doesn't mean the team at apple filled with a players -- they're quite loyal to him. '. >> can you tell us about the relationship between larry el sis union and steve jobs? >> larry says best friends. it was a deep friendly relationship. one of my favorite anecdotes is late '96 when the question of steve coming back to take over apple is first being kicked around. and larry ellison says why don't be buy apple? why don't a launch a hostile takeover. i'll buy apple. we'll put you back and set it into motion again and we'll all make a lot of money. and steve finally says, i think i might go back to apple. but i don't want you to invest. i don't want you to buy it. i don't want me to invest. i want to go back at a dollar a
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year and no openership. and larry ellison say, if you make it a great company again, how are we going to make money if we don't invest in it and buy it? they were walking along a beach, and steve grabbed him by both shoulders and says, larry, this is why it's important, i'm your friend, you're don't need anymore money. [laughter] >> it i won't go there. a couple more questions. first, -- let me just ask you quickly about the current technology, this great conversational interface that siri represents. did he talk about that with you, what the vision for that is? >> yeah. i do think that the simplest, most natural interfaces have always been his passion, and there's no simpler one than just
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talking. i did not know the name siri but we talked and i was careful in the book, even though he told me a lot of things in detail what he wanted to do i decided, you know, i shouldn't put in things that he might not be able to do and that apple may be working on for the next couple of years. but at the last board meeting when he tenders his regs nice as ceo, they have a lung and the engineers bring out the various things they're working on, and one of them which i knew was coming out, is this voice wreck recognition thing, and they know steve is not feeling well but he has been brought into the meeting so he is going to try to make it look bad. so he asks what is now called siri, do i need an umbrella, and says, the prediction is for sunny day tomorrow in palo alto. so, it really is doing the beautiful thing. so finally steve says, are you a
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man or are you a woman? and they all kind of hold their breath because he is trying to trick the machine, and siri is very good. the two layers, and it says, they have not yet assigned me a gender. [laughter] >> and they all breathe a sigh of relief and steve thinks its great. he loves that technology. bill gates and everybody has been trying to crack voice recognition. >> yeah. what do you think of the apple that he leaves behind? you talked about the team and the great group he has built. there's rumored to be this product road map that goes on and on. but the history of technology companies with a founder like this, is someone driving it with a vision like this, leaving, is not great overall. what do you think about where apple goes from here without steve jobs? >> well, the last meeting i told you about when he goes the board
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and does that lunch, somebody at the lunch makes fun of h-p because that day or that week it hatt had gotten out of the tablet business, was getting in or out of the pc and was totally confused. steve said, wait a minute. he stopped the person making fun of the troubles at hewlett-packard. he said, when i was 13, bill hugh hewlett give me my first job, and they crated a company that was designed not only to make a calculator and then make a computer and make other things, but too continue and last and continue to make new products and come up with any ideas even after they were gone. and those bozos screwed it up for hewlett and packard. i don't want that to happen at apple. and he tried deeply to fight off the bozo explosion because there was only a great team of eight players, and also to say there's a simple, simple thing, that
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apple stands for, which is, the intersection of great creativity and the humanities with great engineering and technology, and he says that's what disney did. that's what a lot of people have done. there are companies that last. ibm is almost 101 years old. i think apple has imbued in its genetic code this desire to drive great design and artistic creativity with great engineering and technology, and it will be at that intersection and the people there now are capable of keeping it at that intersection. you know, ten years from now, 25 years from now, ups and downs and ups and downs at disney but they're doing fine right now of a few rough patches since walt
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disney died. if i had to wager, and up like rick perry, i am a betting man -- not $10,000 but i would wager that a generation from now, even a century from now, apple will still exist, at the intersection of the humanities and the technologies. >> so that's apple. one final question about steve jobs. 100 years ago the great industrialists, carnegie, rockefeller, melon, built institutions and legacies, and that legacy survived, steve jobs might have done a similar thing but he chose not too do it and his legacy is apple, and it's built on shifting sands of tech -- technology. what do you think the legacy of steve jobs will be as people
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look back on him and this era. >> asked them the last five or civics -- six pages of the book is him talking about you're legacy, it's putting something back in the flow of history. i asked him, what was his greatest creation. he said, apple as a company because products come and go but the hard part is making a company that will continue to make good products. so i do think apple will be his legacy. but also more specifically the legacy will be somebody who truly transformed industry after industry by pulling together great ideas and driving the technology to support them. i mean, look at the ipad. people made fun of it. i was there when he launched it. there were article, what is this, an iphone on steroids?
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nobody makes a tablet work. the ipad is now -- when i walk into a doctor's office or anywhere else, it is transforming industry after industry. $2 billion last year just in the industry of creating apps for it. the textbook industry. you know, carnegie was great with education fill philanthrop. bill gate, in the end, the ipad may change education as much as any of the carnegie schools. so, i think he's got a pretty solid legacy if you look at each of those industries he transformed. >> so, we often ask our authors to do a short reading at the end and you graciously agreed to read the -- i wonder if you would do that for us now. >> yeah, thank you.
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as i said, i end -- i'll start earlier on. one more thing, his signature phrase, and i do say -- this is one of steve jobs, and even though he didn't impose his croyle suspect i would not be conveying the right feel for him and the way he asserted himself into any situation if ushuffled him on history reside statement without letting hill have he laserworts, so i take a series of interviews i did with him about his legacy and let him talk without me getting in the way. but then the coda is about a one sunny afternoon when in the back garden of his house he wasn't feeling well and he reflected on death. and i say he talked about his experiences in india almost four decade earlier. his study of buddhism, his views on reincoronation and spiritual tran scenens, quote, i'm 50 5 on
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believing in god, he said. for most of my life i felt there must be more to our existence than meeted the eye. unquote. he admitted that, as he faced death, he might be overestimating the odd. out of a desire to believe in the afterlife are quote, i leak to think that something survives after you die. it's strange to think that you accumulate all this experience, and maybe a little wisdom, and it just goes away. so i really want to believe that something survives that maybe your consciousness endures. and then he fell silent for a long time, and then he said, but on the other hand, perhaps it's just like an on-off switch, he said. click, you die. you're gone. and then he paused again, long pause, and he smiled slightly, quote, and maybe that's why i never liked to put on-off switches on apple devices.
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[laughter] >> that's the end. [applause] ... the name of the book and come the author is university of maryland professor julie green. professor the idea of building a canal come about? >> the idea was an old one in american history. at least in the u.s. from the mid 19th century onward but even before that, europeans had
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turned it for centuries. >> always through panel all? >> there was a lot of talk of going in and through nicaragua or mexico, but for a lot of reasons the french seized on the idea of a panel and the united states debated about going to nicaragua but some earthquakes and the fact the french had dons some construction work in panels ;s;ç that a better approach.;ç;s >> when did the french get started, how far did they get and white and a complete? >> the french construction project was a very traumatic. they faced a lot of problems that was in the early 1880s and went through much of that decade. they faced a lot of problems the united states just because the united states project cleared a few decades later the united states was able to overcome some
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of the problems the french had faced read >> such as? >> the french didn't have as good of technological development as the u.s. had to read the had much more trouble in terms of disease by the time he and the united states project began in the early 20th century discovers had been made about what caused malaria fever in the united states was able to take action to eradicate those diseases. also the united states made the crucial decision to build a canal rather than the sea level canal. the sea level canal was much more difficult to accomplish. much more radical digging and structural free creation of the area had to be done for the sea level. so the canal was a brilliant
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decision. >> how long is the panama can now? >> it's about 40 miles. >> how long would it take to traverse? >> i took a trip through the tunnel several years ago and it is an all-day trip pretty much. the locks slow you down, you wait in line. there are often many ships and then going through the locks take a little bit of time but also it's just the ship goes through the lake that dominates the canal. it's a beautiful journey into was fun to do it on a ship with lots of people pointing out other landmarks but by the end of the day you are tired and you have seen so much and you are ready for some dinner. >> professor, a lot of the focus when we talk about the panama canal dual president roosevelt
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and you have a picture of president roosevelt but he's not the picture of your book. >> that's right. he dominates our memory of the canal and for good reasons p4 any other single person played a role in committing the united states into building the canal, left my book doesn't focus on him because i'm interested in looking at the working men and women who built the canal. part of what inspired the book is thinking that the united states was brilliant at creating a triumphant achievement of technology, the leadership of the roosevelt, the selflessness of the united states. and while i certainly agree that bill was a superb achievement, what i felt have got any raced
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was the labor that was actually required to build the canal. george washington, the chief engineer for most of the construction in 1907 until was completed in 1914 once wrote years after the tel had been completed he said everyone talks about it has this incredible technological achievement under a breakthrough in medicine, sanitation, he says none of that was actually knew about the canal. what was new about the canal is that we discovered new ways of ruling over men and women and preserving order. >> what does he mean by that? >> he met the canal where the united states built the canal it was sort of a little country about 65,000 people.
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people came from all over the world to build the canal from maybe as many as 100 countries, and to keep order over those people to actually make the world so that the canal could be built to give government organizations, and that is what they were the most proud of him he was proud of the engineering and the technology but it was that creating a stable society that seemed most important to him and to do that, he had to develop a lot of strategies, some of which by today's standards a bit problematic or unsavory. the united states relied on, for example, why does bredesen segregation. it relied on labor's allies, the
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of police force. i should say something about the racial segregation was interesting because the workers coming from so many different countries from thousands from the u.s. who made up most of the skilled labour force, many more thousands from the west indies, people of african descent from jamaica from barbados, a few thousand from spain come from northern europe, it is a very diverse group and get to the united states structured the force and using a kind of by racial approach similar to jim crow in the united states. there is a photograph of the west indian work force in the canal and this biracial approach
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put the u.s. workers on the so-called and the black workers from the west indies were on the silver. life was different for those groups that a lot of what is fascinating is that so many workers didn't quite fit into that black versus white structure for example the spaniards, fascinating group. the u.s. imported 6,000 spaniards to work on the canal thinking they would prod the workers to work harder. in fact they did have a lot of energy but in ways that complicated life for the other officials. they were classified as non-white or sometimes called referred to as colored or semi white workers. they were excluded from the
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white hotels and cafeterias, excluded from white dormitories and the spaniards were very angry about that and they mobilized and engaged in anarchist movements. as a labor historian 19 in the archives and interested in moments of tension between the workers and the officials. so you are looking in the archives for evidence of any strikes or anything like that. for a long time i saw nothing about that until finally one day i came upon a big box titled labor disturbances and excitedly i opened the box and it was filled with spinach disturbances , strikes, lockouts, riots, all sorts of things. >> were their unions for the workers? >> that's a good question. not really. the unions were allowed to exist
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, but they were not allowed to strike. early in the here's there was a strike of steam shovel men. i should add the unions were just for the white workers. there were no union representation for the 35,000 or so black west indians. and earlier in the construction period the steam shovel men went on strike and the chief engineers took a hard stance against them and they said basically you're fired. there will be no strikes and so the unions represented some of the skilled workers and they worked hard to represent them but the focused more on the lobbying in washington, d.c. and trying to make sure that congress passed the math to
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become measures that would support their work. >> some 35,000 or so west indian african descent workers, how many white americans work on the can now? >> about five or 6,000 white american men. they were skilled workers working as railroad engineers, conductors, firemen, machinists carpenters, that sort of thing. >> go back to the gold and;;; silver pay.;;;;;;; just the white workers would get paid in gold and the others would get paid in silver? what did that create? >> that created a system in the canal that meant the white skilled workers on the gold were very much privileged workers that received higher pay than other workers.
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the hit, series built, they received weeks of vacation leave every year and a free steamship to get home to the united states. the silver workers on the other hand live in a fit of cafeterias. one guy who procurer of the food for the workers said we feed the silver workers just like i field duty to feed my hogs back in omaha. they have no feeding. they would have to sit under a porch in the rain. so those radically different conditions, and use all evidence of the segregation system throughout. the u.s. built large commissary shops where the workers could buy with the needed and very
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reminiscent of jim crow in the u.s. with big signs on the two entrances, gold verses silver so in that way that sense of segregation and a kind of privilege dominated the canal. >> how many workers died building the canal? >> the statistics on that are tough to come up with. i think during the u.s. period the statistics are about 2,000 workers. historians know who had studied the subject believe that the mortality rate was quite a bit higher, and of course the mortality rate was coming and the injury rate was also very race specific. the injuries and the deaf for much more likely to be among the west indians.
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when you finished your time on the construction without having made the entry or the illness you are a very lucky man. one of the things i found in the legal records in the zone stories that were injured west indians who went to the court to try to get payment for their injury. there is a sad story of a man who lost an eye. his name was cizik mackenzie from grenada, a 24-year-old who went to the canal to work and he got a job working on the gigantic amazing what. he was hired to go down in sight of the cave and help direct what
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the white skilled workers would hammer and from the outside, and he wasn't sure he wanted the job because there were no lights down there and his sad story was revealed to me through these legal records. one day he went down in there and the skilled worker on the outside hammered in the screw and it didn't go in straight and they told him to go down there and help direct it and gets down close to wait and the white worker shouts watch out then and he shouts as he is taking his arm back to pound the hammer and the bolt goes through isaac mackenzie, a horrible tragedy. what's interesting about isaac mackenzie though is that he went to court to demand payment for this accident. he demanded i think $10,000 for
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the court that said yes, the company was responsible for this injury but the court said you only lost one on a so your life will be okay and only award of $500. isaac mackenzie got a lawyer and to get all the way to the supreme court of the canal which didn't give him 10,000 but gave him a pretty hefty award for the young west indian man finding the company was responsible for the damages. so a story like that about isaac mackenzie gave me a way to understand the experiences. they tend to be such a tough group to trace because they were not top officials, they were not writing reports, they were often the most erased and silent but cases like that help me see the
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west indians did strategizing. they did find ways to mobilize and use whatever resources they could to achieve. >> who ran the calzone, who was the authority? >> the united states government. >> under the zone authority took about the supreme court under the zone. >> there was a separate judicial system, but it was just part of the appellate court of the united states government. the chief engineer did have remarkable autonomy although he reported to the secretary of war who was william howard taft. >> so george washington the essentially was the president of the canal zone in the sense?
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come he was a benevolent dictator. it was a very paternalistic system. he was admired by many in the zone because he did run things very efficiently. it was a very orderly's zone. he got it built minivan felt could be done. he prided himself on being a sort of fatherly figure to the workers, he would meet sunday morning with anyone who wished to meet with him from loneliest washerwoman to the elite supervisors, but his authority as fatherly as he might be was complete. one of server said we all like the chief engineer but we know not to disagree with him or
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criticize him if we do disagree with him we get deport a fast. >> what would you say is the labor unrest and thinking about the auto strikes in the 30's and the founding of the uaw was their anything of what level? >> no, not really. it was an orderly zone. he was very strategic and effective at using things like deportation and a rescue and imprisonment to enhance productivity. an executive order was passed by president roosevelt which gave complete authority to deport anyone not contributing productively to the construction
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project, so generally speaking workers found other ways besides the strikes except for those spaniards they were causing trouble throughout the construction a year of, but that was the key exception. as derrick with the needed? >> the spaniards? >> right. >> the more they protested, the less the government felt they were needed. and by the end, why 1911, 1912, the u.s. government stopped bringing in spaniards and gradually let them go because they were finding that the spaniards were more trouble. >> we are talking with professor julie green at the university of maryland about her book making america's ny year at the canal. you talked about the archives.
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where were the archives you found on the panama canal? >> there was a fun part of the project discovering the archival sources. the biggest single source for information on the building of the canal was in college park maryland in the national archives. >> right here in the neighborhood. >> a tremendous amount of information there. i should say the national archives in the park and then also the national archives in downtown d.c. where the legal records of the zone where. i was the first historian to look at some of the sources like the legal records. it was amazing to look at those because they shine a bright light into a range of activities that sometimes allegis legal activity sometimes civil disputes, divorce cases between
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husbands and wives everything from that to robbery and murder sometimes when i was looking at the legal records i would be opening evidence that had been returned and have literally never been opened. i was looking at probate records where they assessed the belongings of someone who was may be killed in the construction project and some workingman's personal set of keys would fall into my lap and i would find myself wondering what doors those keys once unlocked. so that was an amazing find for me. also did research and panama it's also looking at records related to the riots that broke out between the u.s. canal employees and the police in the
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red light district. >> what was the relationship between the zone and the country of panama? >> the was a complicated relationship for the republic of panama into greenways the building was a tremendous beast of course. the united states government, in order to build the canal, conducted a lot of sanitation, the elimination of disease throughout panama built sewers. as of the u.s. did a lot of things were beneficial. at the same time panama bridle with a bit and the degree of u.s. control and intervention the united states got quite involved in the elections whenever there were disturbances would send u.s. military there and one of the important role
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panama played especially in panama city was the u.s. tolerated the creation of the red light districts. bars, saloons, gambling, prostitution because officials knew his workers would need a kind of chance for escapes for letting off steam sort of as a safety valve and so these red light district became a during the important part, the sort of disorderly counterpart to the orderly world of the canal zone and as employees and military personnel from the u.s. dominated the zones would go to let off steam in the city a lot of times there would be trouble. the u.s. folks were known for causing trouble for getting
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drunk some times, and as a result sometimes fighting in the riots would break out between the two groups. >> helpless about the city of balboa to respond to the city of gilboa was created by the u.s. to house the administration. it was a very lovely talent. then nd the two images i remember depict this very much as a town that represents the usn player and shows off the pride of the u.s. and having created the canal as a sort of pure less leader of civilization. >> large differences in the living conditions between the skilled white workers and the
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others? >> quite large, yes. the u.s. is very proud of its work in creating a sense ofñ civilization, respectability for the white workers and their wives. many thousands of working men's wives traveled to the zone to keep house for their husband and so in the u.s. encouraged that because it felt the presence of housewives would make it feel not like a labor camp or transient but respectable and civilized said the u.s. encouraged clients to go and once it encouraged lives to go it needed to be sure the conditions were decent enough. >> end of the conditions for the -- >> for the west indian workers was very different, very much. very often windows without
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screens in an environment where mosquitos could spread malaria. not to have screens on the window would be a very remarkable thing. one of the photos in my book shows stagnant water which again is going to breed mosquitos carrying the disease. so yes, the conditions for the west indian workers was very different from the white skilled workers and yet the thing is the west indian workers found their lives and approved by the work they did in the zone the living standards it was pretty bad but if you compare it to what they faced back in barbados or mexico was not in the adventure for them the chance to improve their
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lives many of them were able to save money or send money home and studies have shown many of the workers as a result of their labor for the u.s. were able to buy some land and become self-sufficient back in their home island. >> what kind of medical care to the workers get? >> there were fast hospitals it was very advanced medical care for the time and necessary because it continued throughout the u.s. procrit was a big danger to the construction project and the yellow fever were under control malaria continued and pneumonia. pneumonia was a huge problem. was said that pretty much every west indian at


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