tv Joe Scarborough Saving Freedom CSPAN January 16, 2021 7:55pm-9:01pm EST
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morning joe, author of the outstanding, all advocating for. >> economic conservatism. before the congress thousand seven, joe, and other journalists have discussions on the talkshow morning joe diving into daily political conversation. saving freedom, he offers a historical account for harry truman necessary steps taken tonight the western world and begin soviet communism. to do so, he has a first rally republican and democratic forces in congress to cooperate and curb -- phone break.
accessible but exciting to people you achieve this so wonderfully in this book. congratulations. >> thank you so much. it is an extraordinary story. the story of joe biden is a lot like story, the timing this year, who was constantly underestimated from the very start i try to leaders in the beginning by talking about the contemporary author was a guy with a businessman who have to beg political office to run for the he did was only after the first people for he got to d.c., the new york times welcome him calling him a little. you wouldn't even campaign for
him, wouldn't endorse his reelection. four years later, a dying fdr selected harry truman to be vice president but he did it reluctantly, he was called the second missouri compromise but we will get into this later. what he did after fdr died three months in his fourth term, it's nothing short of extraordinary still shape the world we live in today. >> my favorite part the way experience affect members of congress and help you tell story. i want to talk a lot about that because this a rare and the achievement harry truman shot you but i want to ask to do what you do so nicely in the book, hunter of the world of 1947
american truman step into? begin to think need to overturn 150 years of american isolation. >> is a great question and i must say, maybe it's because i was in congress, 700 young age, i get tired of hearing people say broken and can never be, will never get bipartisan compromise again today than ever before. well, when harry truman got word from the british that they could no longer defend greece or turkey against joseph collins design, he was having to deal
with this congress had just got elected democrats taking disastrous midterm election in 1946, truman midterm file president and back in power for the first time in 14 years. anybody who fdr knows when fdr was president, washington down. he didn't care much for dissent not only inside of office for publicans at another of caps on them they wanted to help you out there for the most part
isolationist. also world war ii. a nation that will run years of war, obviously so. engage, senate and the chairman of the foreign affairs committee, from michigan with traditionally and isolationist truman first worked brandon berg also all the was a constant effort to pull in and explain to them they could no more of joseph stalin's designs on western and central europe then
chamberlain it was designed on the same region ten years earlier so republicans, for anybody who follows the history of the war the republicans, after 1919, woodrow wilson came back and tried to get the united states involved in the league of nations, he had contentions nations with the broken senate and another isolationist to follow wilson's efforts to get the united states involved so the country was back in this fortress american inability which of course allowed adolf hitler to build in strength and world war ii began and we all know the consequences of that so one of the reasons i got into
such detail on the legislative efforts, the efforts of compromise is because he showed how to do it. he also showed how to do it by surrounding himself with the best and brightest of his time. the wise man as walter isaacson and evan thomas called them. general marjorie marshall is the victory in world war ii, he matches him with the undersecretary of state probably the most capable diplomat in washington d.c. at the time. he had george kenneth written the famous long telegram that was the first of stalin's design on europe and also the need for the united states to engage in containment policy. his ambassador to the soviet union knew the soviet union as
well better than anyone. he knew stalin also so it was hard work for republicans but also surrounding himself and allowed him to move, really a revolution in foreign policy and allowed him to do that. >> set the stage internationally what's going on in turkey, why is it so urgent in 1947? why is this a fast burning crisis? >> greece has been at civil war with itself for 3000 years. 1947 was no different. a civil war going on in greece before world war ii and they
were in occupation. it was sweetly savaged and during world war ii, had communist and also france, the communist inside of greece and in effective resistance against the nazis so as the war came to an end, they had to match alliances with people, many were prone to sign up with communist and with the government but by 47, the war was raging the government basically losing track and what i love about story i think was a good
foreshadowing of what other presidents would face decisions to make about the cold war was the fact that the greek government, what is appropriate about it, they were no angels, there was a harsh right-wing government and what i loved about truman, who is straightforward with replicants and progressive democrats really didn't want the soviet union at the time as well but he basically said greek government are no angels but given the choice to joseph stalin, we really have no choice at all and it was a foreshadowing of a lot of decisions that american presidents had to make over the course of the four or five decades of the cold war. foreign policy, you never have a decision between good and bad.
choose police of the tooth that is that's what truman had to do in 1947 and whether you look at the truman doctor or what we did with marshall plan for nato he saved the mic make a right decision time and time again in the years following world war ii. >> one of the things that's so poignant harry truman, the extent to which his great achievements get over shown by other people. we talk so little about the truman doctrine so much about the marshall plan as your book shows, you get the never played about truman on that victory through sweetly in your book and in a way, it sets up the
confrontations that have with the state of israel. >> so glad you brought that up because even though i've spent most of my lifetime reading three, every time you hear about marshall, he must have been in the trolley, no. it was truman's idea to put george marshall's name on a plan that he had very little to do with but he was a truman doctrine and wanted to give marshall this credit and the way he respected george marshall more than just about anybody in government so the name marshall on the marshall plan helped with something that was revolutionary, radical peace
time in 1947. we talked about at the beginning going back to george washington, the united states had done everything they had to do follow washington's advice and that was to avoid foreign settlement so not only get engaged with the possibility of the terry confrontation with the soviet union who were close allied years before to also have that massive of an aide package to rebuild europe was an extraordinary thing but they did it to the republicans credit republicans followed along supported the marshall plan as
well, i say republicans credit not only isolationist but the republicans got elected in 1946. it was really a 180 compared to what happened in great britain. winston churchill conservative guides the british to world war ii and after saving western civilization in getting british believe they stand alone against germany in 1945, the british people kicked him out and one of my favorite stories, that he had lost his wife said dear, maybe it is a blessing in disguise if
it is, it's one of the most well disguised blessings in the history of mankind. they traded conservative for socialist america, americans actually traded liberal democrat and liberal congress for conservative congress in 1946 and wanted to return to normal and the big spending behind them and the problems of the elected a conservative republic congress and spending across the globe. one year later february, four months after the election, harry truman had to go to these same republicans say i know what you
promise constituents, i know what you have campaign for your entire life but we have a much bigger issue and it was under vandenberg chairman from famous politics stop at the water's edge to his and broken credit, that is what they did. >> one of the fascinating insights you have in the book is that truman succeeded at woodrow wilson's failed app. one of the reason the book is so powerful, make clear how little reason there was, truman was a man who had the skills to do this so what is it that truman understands you make a good case in the book that because he was
a creature of the senate, he understood the value and practice of it. what else? he didn't have near the political base you would could produce the leverage to get it done congress. tell the story of how you use this magic because it really is an achievement. >> harry truman might be things going for him in his relationship in the senate and that was certainly one of them. another was he was very plainspoken. the people who worked with him new if harry truman had a problem with you, he would let you know as the music critics for the washington post learned after he wrote a negative review
of truman's daughters singing. [laughter] a very harsh attack but truman was plainspoken. he had going for him. he also believed, he put it on his desk and believed in his heart, the book starts here he had no problem making difficult decisions and taking responsibility for those decisions truman always slept better at night after a tough and difficult decision where he knew he was right and it's another great gift harry truman at. he would do what was right and if he had a problem, if there was a crisis with stage four and could take him down in the and
other organs in the senate and tell them what the problem was he built up a bank of trust one of the more extraordinary things about the truman doctrine, even got a republican, calf, a devout isolationist and had been since his experiences post-world war i to go along with him so i think it has a lot to do with it but again, i guess because i am a creature of congress and was there when i was young and have followed closely through the years, i just don't think you can overestimate how important it was that she had positive relationships with people inside of congress. he knew how congress works. it reminds of those old lgb lbj
tapes lbj harassing chairman and house subcommittees nobody ever called, even the chairman of the committee's when we call the subcommittee members but lbj knew exactly where the bills were. he picked up the phone and said get out of your sub committee, i need to get out and onto the floor. that's something harry truman had as well. i do think, i hear all the time we're not going to get anything done in washington over the next four years. i just don't believe that. mitch mcconnell and joe biden worked together for decades. i do think both of these men, despite the fact they were both partisan throughout the careers, but didn't know politics
possible you have six, seven, eight moderates willing to compromise right now on a covered relief bill and willing to compromise on issues, immigration coming up. i think we are going to get to watch washington work over the next couple of years but it only works for publicans and democrats work together and that's certainly what happened with harry truman. >> you have a chapter in the book takes my favorite u.s. government executive branch management philosophy, which is that people are policy. personnel is policy and the most interesting character i knew least about that i learned about in your book is band suite.
i love the way you describe the way truman had and i who's the right person to put into this position? is getting all the pressure to choose a greek american to administer a degree and rightly understands that will narrow it out and create that suspicion corruption in the process. then he pays careful attention to who the military appointees should be. talk about him speak of himself prominently in your story. >> he really does. you are right, harry truman was pressure from outside sources appointing americans that position. as you said, he stayed away
because he thought it could cause publication so he put the general in charge and it was slow going for a while but as they moved forward, truman saw there was progress being made and i thought one of the more interesting parts of the story was as a diplomat in greece who tried to bump. a group of george marshall who came to truman and said do the job and he'll make we win this war. what i learned the most about harry in this book, the fact that truman put really good people in place. personal was policy.
the people in place and he trusted them. i remember five years ago maybe during the campaign, donald trump and i have no him for about 15 years but i remember, he had just said something shocking came on the show the next day, donald, who do you know close to you at a good advisor you can listen to whose advice you can take, what you estimate about this? i have three people when i was 31-year-old member of congress and these people told me not to do something, i didn't do it. i told my chief of staff early on, i called my chief of staff
and said you know speaking of personnel, you've been in washington and no the best people and i said your job is to make the dumbest guy in the room every meeting half. he laughed and i said it's not going to be that easy. i always have to have my people around me. what i found truman, writing this book and researching this book, truman did the same thing in effect, a lot of them were bowled over fdr but he kept the best people around and when they came gave him advice as you saw in the book, they would grab they would bring it over and truman would read it okay, get it done and handed back.
appreciated about harry truman and his decision making, he didn't think he was back in the room. i will say this and i know i always get in trouble when i say this but we've had now in a row will always thought they were the smartest guy in the room. i only say that because i knew quite a few people work for president obama in his cabinet, a lot of democratic editors said he always was the smartest guy in the room. he is a brilliant but you never want to press it, is smarter than the diplomat, smaller than economic advisers. if you want a president who takes the information and is only to be for something truman
was able to do laundry i'm not so sure our presidents in the 21st century were quite as good as hearing. >> let's get the break between marshall and truman. it's my favorite part, the condition of israel, i love the way you diary entries from both truman and marshall, captured the death of what they felt. these two men who accomplished so much together that had so much more work ahead of them, why is the recognition such a bitter break and how do they get past it? >> that was really shocking, wasn't it? especially general marchers diary entry.
harry truman considered the recognition of israel but the state department was violently against it. a marshall was against it, everybody. >> let's say the un was talking. >> it really was harry truman. i just said harry truman would differ but this will, george marshall and state department believed this would be a nightmare for the united states foreign policy. it would be disastrous for the middle east. one of their concerns at the time was the soviet union and
stalin designed not only in turkey and greece but also, they needed the oil in iran. marshall tried to explain if we recognize an independent state of israel, it would have severe consequences for the united states, they would turn in an instant and the soviet union a great advantage. truman listened but it is interesting, u.s. sales in that effort and jacobson came to the white house and lobbied all the years since world war i they
fought together, he lobbied him to support israel to weigh in. truman gave his word truman was not going to back down. you talk about the diary entries and it was obviously truman's diaries, he was almost heartbroken to be in conflict what he was in because he respected marshall more than any other person in washington d.c. but marshall was so concerned he wrote in his diary that he did vote in election but if he did, and if mary truman followed him through with this recognition of
israel that he would vote against harry truman in the next election, which you read and it jumps off the page, everything these two leaders have been through over the past several years, it really was shocking. truman followed so it took 11 minutes after the recognition of israel for the united states to recognize israel as well. and it guaranteed existence of israel. >> we are getting an avalanche of great questions so i will resist temptations to talk about this with you and start asking questions. was the election of dwight out in higher eisenhower in his term or something else?
>> it dwight eisenhower, he would have been anyway in the political landscape at that time. he is so extraordinarily popular. we talked about it a couple of days ago, he was so confident tell age before press conferences, don't get confused. he knew how to play leader but -- >> 65% approval rating, all eight years of his presidency. it is unmatched. >> it was an extraordinary presidency i measured how extraordinary it was by half.
his campaign and critics of eisenhower in the 1950s was going. i would take boring peace and asperity over what happened in the 60s to 90s and the best more than any day of the week. i was just an extraordinary popular person, the guy in world war ii but also harry truman was unpopular. ... he integrated the armed forces ands
something that was way out of this time in 1948 and not popular with a lot of democrats in his own party people like henry wallace didn't like truman. they thought he was too conservative. republicans of course had had enough and democrats in the white house so when he took that long lonely train ride home to independence missouri he had a 22% approval rating, the lowest approval rating for any president to ever left office and i look at that number as a monument that was harry truman's courage. he made one decision after another, did not worry about the political consequences of the decision and yet he was mocked and ridiculed by people in his own party and the republican party, his mother-in-law wasn't even respectful to him and even
though he lived in the white house and winston churchill a great hero of mine said of harry truman of all men no one has done more to save western civilization than harry truman. so i think i could go home after being in the white house for eight years and tune out most of the other criticism even though my mother-in-law and winston churchill said he saved western civilization. >> one other thing i might add about the election of 1952 is it was a repudiation of robert taft from the isolationist so eisenhower represented the continuity of truman's foreign-policy in a way and it took a pot -- politician not popular to bring republicans
that believed in the truman doctrine. >> i'm so glad you said that. that brings up another thing that i say in the first page of my book which is when i got to congress i was small government conservative and members of my own caucus that i was too intense at times but i had to presidential portraits on my wall. one of course was of ronald reagan but the other was of harry truman and people would always come in and say okay we get the reagan but what about harry truman? i said harry truman put a policy in place that helped us win the cold war and i thought it was extraordinary that the nine presidents from harry truman to george h.w. bush, they put their country above their party and you are right, there was that continuous line from truman to
ike through kennedy, lbj and all the way through to a george h.w. bush where they stated in the world and of course there were twists and turns. reagan taking a more conversational approach but for the most part they followed the same policy that truman set in place so that's a great point. you are right, that was a repudiation of republican isolationists. >> the next question do you see any potential, senator vandenberg or senator taft among the current republican members of the senate? >> well you know i actually i think there is safety in numbers. a lot of republicans were afraid to stand out on their own in the past four years. you look at mitt romney, lisa murkowski, susan collins on the
republican side have all said they want to work together with democrats. they want to let joe biden a point to to a one so .2 the cabinet so long as they are not too outside the mainstream and on the democratic side mark kelly just got elected and still is in the republican state state of arizona and christensen the mom is looking for opportunity for a bipartisan compromise. governor hickenlooper when he becomes senator for colorado will be the same position and of course the bane of all progressive democrats joe manchin always looking for a deal in pat toomey announced he's not going to be running for re-election and also who is also a really good small government conservative but he was willing to compromise and compromise
with democrats as well. i think we are going to have a good coalition in the senate and i tried another name a guide known since 1994 who has been especially hard in the past four years on my show but lindsey graham. lindsey graham you can eyes make a deal with the guy who's in charge. john mccain when john mccain that they nomination he liked -- and most have seen the clip of lindsey talking about joe biden starting to tear up talking about what a great american he was american he was and how much he loved him. i suspect a few people like lindsey graham may surprise all of us in being willing to work on a bipartisan effort especially on the international stage because while people like marco rubio and lindsey graham
have followed president trump on foreign-policy matters there is no doubt that lindsey and our and a good number of republicans are far more comfortable with joe biden's view of nato and joe biden's view of our democratic alliances across the world than they were with donald trump. again i'm optimistic. maybe i'm being pollyanna-ish but i don't think so. >> the next question is more of a domestic policy question so it's outside the confines of the book but you have such a wide sweep of truman that i'm going to let the question come across any way which is harry truman was an early proponent of government support of health care in america. do you think he gets enough credit for modern-day democrats for helping this dart the long march towards obamacare?
>> no but you pointed out at the very beginning harry truman really doesn't get much credit from most americans. a lot of people who picked up the books that i've read aloud residential biographies but i just haven't read that much on truman. of course deborah mccullough wrote a masterpiece on harry truman about 30, 35 or 40 years ago and it really is an indispensable biography on harry truman but most people haven't been made aware of all the things that truman did. but i will say when he left he was considered a failure as a president that most historians even before mccullough's biography were looking back at truman's presidency and said well you know he was a very good president and then he started moving into the near great category and now most historians
say well no president over the past 75 years is impacted america's foreign-policy more than harry truman. i think, i'm curious what your thoughts are on that. do we still basically live in harry truman's world at least on the international stage? >> i think we actually do because what truman understood that wilson had initially suggested that you know the way to take americans out into the world, to get us to care about the shape of other people's outcomes really is american values and what wilson theorized truman was a good enough politician to make happen which
is to make an international order that was a macrocosm of america's domestic political order where self-determination was how you came to create a political community and that violence couldn't be the answer, that protective rules of the international order were rules that would make the united states safer and more prosperous but because we didn't bring every last ounce of advantage out of it it was also the best set of rules of countries that were medium or small powers so it created an international order for people, where countries opted involuntarily. they obeyed the rules because the rules were more in their interest than any other outcome and i think no president before donald trump ever failed to believe that was true.
one of the things i think you see for example in the public attitude by the chicago council on global affairs in the last five years is that what president trump was brilliant at is asking first-order questions, why don't allies do more? doesn't trade export american jobs and what we have seen is that the policies he enacted, the american public that the question was interesting but they didn't like his answer. >> right. that's a great point and it's a fair question to ask. what are we getting out of this? we should always be asking what are we getting out of this and it's the responsibility of joe biden and it's the responsibility of republicans and democrats alike to believe that the united states like i believe is the indispensable
ally on the globe still i would say especially now. you see what happens and you see what happens even in europe and in hungary and you see what happens in poland and across the world. you see an erosion of democratic values. you see an erosion of the rule of law. you see an erosion of the very thing that not only harry truman but arthur vandenberg and others wanted the united states influence globally. it's good to ask those questions. it's good to ask what are we doing but joe biden and i think republicans and democrats alike believe that the united states does play a role in the world. we need to be able to explain to the american people that yes like for instance the marshall plan we spent millions of dollars on the marshall plan. he rebuilt the economies of
western and central europe and that helped usher in the american century. if you look at america's gdp from 1947 forward and compared to every other country and i'm such a nerd, i admit that regularly, our gdp is the gdp of other allies and their ups and downs of the other country. ours goes straight up and the reason why is we invested in our plans. we invested in our allies. we looked outside of ourselves and we have leaders republicans and democrats alike who actually understood that freer markets and freer men and women actually would not only be the right thing to do morally but also the right thing to do economically and our so-called generosity has paid us back not tenfold but
hundreds of thousands fold. >> one of the things, think my favorite thing about your book joe is the way that you conjure up how scary the world felt and how much the people who built this international order come the people who envisioned the truman doctrine and made it american policy and made it the international order that we still benefit from today, they didn't do it out of arrogance. they didn't do it out of you know faculty lounge liberalism. they did it because they wanted a world that was safer, more predictable and more prosperous from the world they had lived in from 1915 to 1945. it was their insurance policy. >> it was an early on i talk about harry truman being
breached on the crisis across western europe and it was the greatest refugee crisis in modern history. you had countries that were leveled. you have millions of refugees that were starving and what did harry truman do? >> call then herbert hoover the disgraced ex-republican president who had been a punchline in every democratic campaign over the 14 years before truman called him into his office and truman called them in and said i need your help. we have a refugee crisis. you are an engineer. you helped with this after world war i and the need your help now. i thought what herbert hoover said the harry truman really is in line with what you just said and that was, it was the right
thing to do but it was also sort of a hardheaded approach to it to where herbert hoover led harry truman know that a person who is starving in europe is a person who is more prone to becoming a communist, more prone to becoming a radical, more prone to aligning themselves with stalin and the soviet union, communism. so together harry truman and herbert hoover worked to feed those millions of refugees and alleviate their suffering but you are right, this wasn't the faculty lounge discussion. this was, it was american generosity with a pretty healthy dose of realism sprinkle then.
>> another thing i really like about your book is the way that you demonstrate that this enormous american effort of the truman doctrine and its implementation succeeded right away and we still kept doing it but we understood you know the immediate purpose was to prevent stalin and the advance of communism from taking advantage of the great civil war. but then they also started to see all of what you were just saying about the marshall plan so it wasn't the initial impetus but they realized they had a winning formula and that's what could make an american international order different from the international order of any other great powers had created a cause that had an anchor and the value that was magnetic for others.
>> i love that republican chairman arthur vandenberg who recognize that early on and said this wouldn't just be about greece and turkey. this would be about the united states guaranteeing freedom across the world. >> we have only about 10 minutes left and still a few questions. let me try to get through them. why was eisenhower so ungracious to truman after he won the election? >> it's a very good question. as somebody who admires eisenhower and spent my adult life reading biographies of ike it's hard to say. they were very competitive and i could understand why truman was resentful of eisenhower but i never understood why eisenhower was so chilly to truman. if you read a book i think it
was called ike and talking about the complicated relationship between dwight eisenhower and richard nixon he was chilly to nixon to two. when nixon was in the oval office and heard that eisenhower cried he broke down, nixon broke down and wept and those who knew him said he wept bitterly because it was like losing a father before the father had told him that he loved him and he was proud of him. he always felt like he was on the outside and even eisenhower's own son had said that his father was something along the lines of 50% lovable and 50% coldhearted and then he thought about it and said make that 75% coldhearted. >> i think there is a big gap between the geniality of the
public eisenhower and the emotional withholding of the interpersonal eisenhower and that may be what made him so effective. i can see why it would be hurtful. so we have two great questions about the contemporary application of your work and the contemporary conservatism. you think the republican party will be able to rebuild and re-center and what gives you the most open what worries you the most? >> well, you know what worries me the most is the fact that most republicans have remained silent during this transition period while the president of the united states has been spreading conspiracy theories that have undermined america's confidence in the democratic process in a way that the russians have always wanted to do but have never been able to
do so successfully. i'm concerned about the fact the last two weeks of the campaign a republican president calling for the arrest of his democratic -- and pressured the attorney general to do that and the republicans have remained silent. it's easy for me to say that i think the republicans can never rebound from this but i thought the republicans were going to pay a heavy price for this in 2016 and i was wrong and i thought they'd pay a heavy price and i was right and a heavy price and 2020 and i was wrong again. republicans had an extraordinary night especially in the house of representatives. and so i think they can rebound but there has to be a course correction and i do think it
needs to not just start on the international stage but there a lot of issues we need to take care of them the question is right now are we going to be able to speak truth not to power but are they going to be able to speak truth to their own base? right now they are afraid people who voted for them that donald trump lost the election. that's deeply troubling to me. >> the next related question is do you think civil unrest during the transition of power can be averted given that many are our day convinced of trump's election in america? >> i do and i've always felt mornings usually work because micah would take the liberal line and i would usually take the conservative line. we disagreed every day. we have been very boring over
the past four years and that we have been deeply concerned about the reit preaching of constitutional and legal norms over the past four years but one of the areas where we did disagree is whether institutions would hold up. i said from the day donald trump was elected our cetaceans were strong but madisonian democracy is strong and i said i don't know if he had been before a federal judge but i had as a lawyer and when my client says let's go to federal court, we saw that early on. i think federal judges have done an extraordinary job of making sure the checks and balances that our founders put in place in the constitution remained stronger than ever and so i am
optimistic. i also, i also was skeptical of the polls of 98% of people that this election was stolen for donald trump. i think most republicans that i have talked to come the same republicans my friends and family members who all said they would vote for donald trump despite the fact that he accused me of being a murderer like 12 times. but the same republican friends and family members, they all know. joe biden won the race and this is where it drives me crazy. i think we are going to be fine and we are going to get through this transition. joe biden is going to be the president and we may actually see republicans and democrats working together on some
legislation moving forward. >> one of the most hopeful fines for me of this contested election period is how many republicans in states attorney generals and how many republican governors, how many have been the bulwark and how many republican federal judges have been against the president story line that the election wasn't lost. it's predominantly been in front of republican judges so it not only assures me that my fellow republicans are bulwark against the corrosion of the constitutional and madisonian order but also the people who worry about the political
leanings of judges for example underestimate that they are just judges. >> time and again over the past four years republican appointed judges have held a republican president's worst instincts and check. time and time again and so again i look back over the past four years and while i've been very concerned about a lot of things that happened i just felt blessed that the rule of law which really is the cornerstone of our constitutional republic and the rule of law has held in place and its holding in place right now. the republican judges have been ruling against the more bizarre claims and my god the trump
appointed judge this past week who was one of the harshest about the unfounded conspiracy theories and the lack of evidence that trump's lawyers have brought forward. that's a good sign whether it's democratic appointed judges standing up to democratic presidents or democratic appointed judges standing up to republican president it shows how strong madisonian democracy still lives. >> in closing we have got one question that i'm actually going to answer because i wanted it to be in praise of your terrific vote. the question was sent you mention david mccullough can you speak to the differences between academic history and popular history and one of the things i have heard david mccullough say is the hard part about writing history is the people who lived it don't know how it comes out.
academic historians very often, we make the out come down. determined and there are structural factors that constrain the actors are winston churchill was so amazing that he alone and what you do so beautifully in this book is conjure up the uncertainty in which real policymakers and real legislators had to take risks and the consequences of being wrong were enormous and they didn't know what they were doing in that. it makes the book reads like a thriller and of the serious historian reading it i was so impressed with the tradecraft with which you write history. this is what popular history can give us. it's not unserious. your book is incredibly serious
but it also reads like something i'd love to read on an airplane because i'm propelled by the plot of the story. that's the difference between them. historians are often poor storytellers or we don't even try. we just give everything we know to an unsuspecting reader. it tells a story about people who are trying their best in times of deep uncertainty. i hope you read the book my friends. >> my goodness i need to take you out on the book tour with me. it's very kind of you and i don't feel quite so bad about the five or six edits just to try to strip it down and try to make it more readable. i really appreciate you saying that. it's very kind. >> on behalf of the commonwealth club of california thank you for coming to share your book with us. i believe there are other
programs coming up but i'm so sorry i'm out of time. please my friends go to the comment above club web site to look at her our presidents. thank you joe scarborough and thank you commonwealth club of california. thank you so much. i can't wait to get up there and see you. our next guest is mike gonzalez a former journalist for the george w. bush demonstrations
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