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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  May 19, 2015 1:00am-3:01am EDT

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cameras before a a senate judiciary subcommittee. live on c-span 3. there's been a lot of talk lready already on the 2016 campaign trail of the gap between the richest americans and everyone else. we'lln be talking about that topic here in this special
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roundtable on "the washington journal." we're joined by scott of d mich manhattanae institute and michael ent console of the roosevelt 2013 institute.c ineq michael, first, president obama in 2013 called this issue economic inequality issue woagu defining challenge of our time. would you agree with that? >> yes, i think inequality is the doubling of top shares that are going to run away a real ce median class. median incomes are down 8% since 2000 in particular areas. aus e lot of unemployment. an >> and scott, runaway incomes, talk about the growth of guest: inequality. are we hearing so much because t this is an issue that is running be away?ca >> i think we have heard a lot odged aboutan it since the financial cry crisis because we dodged another great depression.
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there was a lot of economic anxiety for pretty good reasons.tended but inequality is high before ccupy the financial crisis and tend to not hear that much about it. there was no occupy wall street, people weren't talking about it as a defining challenge of our time. i do think if the economy continues to expand that we're going to see inequality as an issue. >>al michael talk about the roosevelt institute and some of the policy precipitations that your group has put out on this ea issue. >> absolutely. we just released a big report and when people talk about economic reform in the past 35 years, they tend to emphasize globalization. they tend to talk about tech technology and skills and talk about sociology and family structures d and individual choices choices. we wanted to emphasize decision, the rules of the economy, how laws are set f up, labor markets are set up, just as much of a
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role, maybe even a greater role. there's a lot of research in the past 15 years. a lot of these changes have not made the economy strongeratio and some cases may have weakened it.: and we think within our capacity viewers to show broader prosperity. >> you can check out the report at we're doing our phone lines differently as we talk about income inequality. income under $25,000, we have a line for you.20000 between $26,000 and $50,000 80 202-748-8001. between $51,000 and $100,000, we have a number for you. that line for those over $100,000, 202-748-8003.
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scott, your philosophy on policy prescriptions for this issue. >> i tend to think that income as a inequality has been greatly overstated as a problem.hlight i tend to worry about opportunity and search that i not ma have done and tried to highlight that others have done doesn't make a very strong case in my view that if you care about inequality of opportunity that income inequality ought to be i the thing you target.m the bo i'm more concerned about mobility from the bottom. i think the way to do that is to at do a lot of experimentation at the federal level with programs that try to increase the skills of kids, change the behavior of progra parents. i think we have federal safety net problemsou that have bad incentives where people are discouraged from working saving marrying i think we e area need to have som oe reforms in the area of higher education financing as well, but i
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wouldn't tend to put forth an agenda that specifically is trying to reduce income inequality. >> a chart from business insider on this to try to illustrate what we're talking about. the income inequality in this t country, this is the percent in change to 2012. red the blue line is the one running on the top is the top .01% l of earners in this country. the red line is the bottom 90% in this country. you can see thestay percent change in real income since 1980 staying flat for the bottom 90% and going generally upwards for the top .01%.op michael, is it just a matter of getting people more ability to break into that top .01%? >> no, e we don't believe so. there are symptoms of our economic ways. it's incredibly important to treat the symptoms.g
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you want to make sure people at the bottom have decent opportunities, young children arellne a investing.ules tha but you need to tackle the underlying illness that there are a lot of rules that are channelling a lot of wealth upward. they are maredefining finance, gether corporations, labor markets and intellectual property that are all taken together create this divergence. if you look at the recovery, if it was a child, it would be in first grade. but through 2013 median incomes were falling while the top were going up. certainly it's not a recovery that's t broad based. it's a recovery that the 1% look looks like it's coming back to 2007 levels. that should worry us because these trends areor likely to xes on continue t going forward if we . keep the policy regime in lace. >> is it a matter of heavy taxes on that .01% to move money back down? >> there's also things calledpr market conditioning or predistribution. there's subtle ways from
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financial regulations to labor market regulations to the minimum wage that set up the market to benefit some people versus others. we have tilted that to the top 1% and now it's time we tilt ittt, ee back. >> i imagine you don't agree. >> lots to disagree with. i think mike is right, the story they want to tell in the report is that the rise in income inequality begin ngt early 1980suences facilitated by the rule changes have had these negative ming of consequences. a big problem for the report is the timing of the story doesn't work out. so the growth in incomes in 1970s predating the run up of co income con concentration by a decade. productivity slowed in developed countries around the world. countries that had a lot of inequality, countries that
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didn't have that much inequality. there are a number of instances whereome the financial sector has become. increasingly a bigger share of the economy going back to the 1940s. this isn't something where financialization since 1980 because of rule changes has has a produced any of the changes thatho we see. i also hopefully we can have a discussion about trends and living standards as well. refer the chart you referenced visually down plays how much there has been income growth for the middle class. it's been a 40% incident crease since 1979. not a whole lot of change since eghs for 2000 for sure. but we're basically almost back to the levels that were inship essentially all time highs for living standards in the united states. >> should note scott's website for the manhattan institute is
1:56 am you can see that report. but we also want to hear from our viewers this morning. we have divided the lines different differently by income last year. we'll start with peter from valley cottage, new york on the line for those who made between $51,000 and $100,000 last year.. >> caller: good morning guys. i want to talk about the gorilla in the room. the congressional research service report studied tion immigration and middle class income to 2013.0 and found that as immigration slowed between 1945 and 1970 american incomes increased. but when immigration imm expanded, the incomes of the bottom 90% of america went flat and then drop dropped beginning in 2000. in the report to the senate judiciary u committee it was reported that the foreign born population searched 325% from 9
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million to 41 million. and as that happened, incomes of the bottom 90% dropped 7.9% in o 30,980 2013 from an average of $33,000 to $30,000.fact nowor naturally there's other contributing factors globalization, outsourcing, inflation, declining unionization, trade deals that are bad, advances in robotics k ec and technology, but when you have a glut of labor and you not be have a weak economy or slowly 1 growing economy, you're not going to be able to absorb all these people. we bring in immigrants legally compet who are competing with american workers and with this legalization effort that was being pushed a year ago they k. wanted to double that. >> peter is in valley cottage new york.
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michael, in your report, talked a little bit about this issue of immigration. >> yeah, i think certainly having a large part of the labor force essentially be in the shadows of labor law and not having basic rights, basic protections, the ability to go to law enforcements or other a kinds of public agencies because who of undocumented status is a detriment to other workers who have to compete.ryone we feel that you can make the labor floor much better for s everyone by incorporating people formally. there's a lot t ofha different ways to measure this, but my understanding is that immigration has fallen quite o not dramatically since these great recession. we don't really see this renaissance of working class wages since then. there's a lot of other factors in play. a lot of people look at this and say it's a contributing at margins, but not a big contributor. >> i think i would agree with what mike said. the research literature is kind of all over then. place on this
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question.the i do think the call r brings up an important point, which is that a lot of the bcoul policies in the report could have benefits, but a lot of them could have costs as well thatn th are not necessarily discussed in the report, whether that's intervening in the economy at the risk of slowing economic wspen w growth, whether that's more way. spending on federal policies that would increase deficits has no potentially hurt economic growth that way, but i agree with mike about overall how important immigration ha ts or hasn't been for wage trends over time. >> in terms of more federal der spending henry kolb on twitter wants me to ask you specifically what youstru do about underinvestment in american infrastructure and american his gi workers. >> i think the infrastructure in the u.s., this is a bad time tovest cite the literature on this given that we just had this horrible amtrak accident, but i
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think evan soltis made a strong case. he's a researcher that has been on a blog. i think he makes a strong case that the infrastructure crisis as folks like to describe it has really been overstated. we want to maintain our infrastructure spending for r w sure. i think what thehen recovery showed is that even when we boost e very spending on infrastructure it imp doesn't have very strong, so i especially short-term impacts on employment, on the income distribution. so i think infrastructure has been oversold as a way of boost s ing the middle class. >> income inequality, the income distribution in the u.s., our topic for the next 45 minutes or " so here on the washington journal. two experts, one from the roosevelt institute, the other from theki manhattan institute to join us. kitty hawk, north carolina, on that line for those who made under $25,000 last year. jim, good >> caller: good morning, how are you? r >> go ahead. >> caller: one of the problems i think we have in this country isthe
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the low savings rate. without money in the bank, it's very difficult to negotiate any kind of union contract or just discuss those possibilities with -- your management.inet and i can recall my grandmother my grandfather was a cabinet maker and my grandmother had this jar in the pantry and she saved a dollar or two dollarsi she a s week and when she said what is that money for and she said it'si thin for a time when we go on strike so i can pay the mortgage and feedms the family. and i think that's one of the major problems in this country. earlier on another network i heard that people between 55 and 65, 67% of them have no retirement fund.year what's going to happen to those people in the next 10 to 20 to0 ye 30 years living to the tune of
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80 or 90 years old? >> michael? >> yeah, there's been a big experiment with 401(k)s and a lot of people say it's nowhere near delivered on the promise it had. people haven't ever saved that way. it's difficult to save individually out of yourself. people normally retire off their children or now retire off government pension or private pensions. i think thethe gap there is pretty big and pretty startling. it seems we have seen experiments where a lot of these private savingtu vehicles nt of essentially make good experiment out of the danish pension system that showed most people don't save on tax credits. the rich do because they can shuffle money. we call for bolstering social security. we think that's a time-tested solution. i think the reason for the decline of the strike, which happens much earlier, it happens in the 40s after a lot of changes in labor law so it brings down the strike level.
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i think indi there's a lot -- we don't want to blame it on individuals and the idea that individualst workers aren't saving enough and that's why there's not strikes. i it's a function of labor law ses, t thathe cause edd that kind of change. >> i think that, again, this is one of these crises, the retirement savings crisis that has been overstated. that andrew bigs has some really good research showingent that our much official data that people use to gauge theed a question si of savings and how much income retireosse have understated older americans. it's a misreading o of those statistics that lead you to conclude we ought to t spend more on social security, which is really going to eat the rest of the budget along with medicare as things currently stand, even if we don't expand it. this is another area there are real tradeoffs to some of the policies in the moreport. >> income inequality is our topic of the roundtable this morning. here's another chart from d
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business insider showing the wealth share in the united states from 1913 to 2012 of those in the top .1%. you can see once it was passed . about 2010 or so, that number over 20% of the wealth share in the united states is held by . those in the top .1%. we're talking about income inequality. calvin is up next from north carolina on the line for those who made over $100,000 last year. calvin, good morning. >> caller: good morning and kudos to c-span for the continuous excellent job you and your team do. the n a couple of things i want to quickly mention.n income one, the nature of a capital system is to have built-in income inequality. going back to europe which was the predecessor for our current system, there's always going to
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be those who have the capital and there's going to be those who are going to seek to work using their capital. so income inequality is built in. second thing i would like to k mention is a book called the "the millionaire next door" by a couple of doctors. it was published back in 1996.and and in this book, it points out tl a couple things. it piggy backs off what the mill gentleman from north carolina mentioned, which is millionairesof their live next door and they are incon speckous because a lot of their saving habits spending habits, the values that they have in terms of emphasizing education, deferring immediate satisfaction in order to look at the long-term benefits of a decision, that's what really to makes people wealthy and prosperous. i don't think it's a total government thing, nor do i think it's a total take regulations away and just let the free enterprise solve the situation.n. it's going to have to really scott start with us as individuals.
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>> i think the caller makes an interesting point that there are folks out therese who w are millionaires who might not expect or identify as such on the street. that said, as somebody who tends to worry lessss a about inequality than a lot of people it's really hard to overstate how tes. much inequality there is in the united states.ary i have written before the amount of inequality between larry ellison, who is often on the nd m charts as the richest person in america, the inequality between him and say mitt romney on the other hand is as great as the inequality between thedd top 1% and the average middle class family.uality so it is a astonishing how high se inequality levels are but you have to make a case for why that's a problem or why folks don't e deserve to make that
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much. >> as i said earlier, when you look at what's happening, you want to include sociology.errate we think those tend to be ompared overrated relative to the normal conversations. e we want to bring in other d things. as for the kind of general tendency of inequality, rse, w absolutely. we have always hade ys h inequality in this country. large ones because you have bosses, capital, people who invest in companies and own them in people who workot o for them. one thing we have noticed is that a lot of those things change rapidly. ceo salaries are flat or te certainly doesn't have the explosive characteristics it does. finances, sharer of gdp, the rate of growth doubles in the 1980s. you see wages are linked to deregulation in the time period. there are different ways to set up with some people call the varieties of capitalism. ones more inclusive andd work better for more people and then there's other ways where it does tind to channel and come to the top. >> john is on that line for those who made between $51,000 and $100,000 last year.ears ago
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good morning, john. >> caller: good morning, about 100 yearuns something like if it'ssalary difficult for a person to understand something if their take salary depends upon them not understanding it. you can take the manhattan institute, american enterprise institute, club for growth and come apply that to them. as far as the income inequality the facts are there to back it f up.c-you it would be nice if c-span wouldthe have the roosevelt institute on as much as the other groups. you have the right wing think tanks on there too much. in as far as income inequality goes, the facts are out there. >> do you want to talk about your group? >> the manhattan institute is a
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free market think tank in new york city. we basically advocate that government play a role where it can help, but in general we're aore lot more worried about government failure than we are about market failure.ion befo i was at the brookings institution before i was at the manhattan institute. so i think the caller is identifying some problems that are on both sides of the aisle for sure, but ultimately i would encourage him to read see. my own stuff on inequality and see whether i have the facts wrong. i don't think i do. >> it's >>in the roosevelt institute is the non-profit partner where we nor work to keep the legacy alive.we sta we started a think tank in 2009 in the aftermath of the crisis primarily focused on microeconomics and the financial
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reform. since then we have worked more on inequality releasing this big report with our chief economist just like week. >> if you want to check out that report. laura in pennsylvania on that line for those who made over $100,000 last year. good morning, laura. >> caller: good morning, it's both my husband and i making that. we're both - myngretired military officers. we worked hard, we're now retired so we're going to have a lot more. but i wanted to address president obama's conference on like he it seemed like he was blaming racist cops and instead of he addressing the fact from all of these institutes, especially the heritage foundation, theri information on poverty, the number one group according to our census bureau are single chool family headed households. one income and barely with a ou wil high school education. so if you wait and then you get married, then you're going to he d have two incomes and you're going to build your way up and you're going to save.
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he didn't address the fact that blacks account for 12 to 13%. these fatherless households, these kids raised there have much higher incidents of criminal behavior, school dropout rates, marriage drops the probability of poverty 82%. that is huge. if you wait and you get married and you commit to the mother of your children, then you can work your way up and not be trapped in poverty. >> michael, i want to let you jump in. does your report talk about marriage? >> what we emphasize is the causation runs both ways. sociologists talked to poor women having children and they say why aren't you getting married.
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they want to get married. they don't devalue marriage, but they find o out kmirtheir economicruns weaker marriages. in a different world we see people with higher student loans are likely to delay marriage. we think of it as a larger incar question in thatce realm. in our report we do emphasize mass incarcerationrt as weakened employment for particularly people of color at the low end of the income distribution. that's a rule change where it certainly has gone way beyond - an any kind of cause benefit analysis to reducing crime and it sbebds to lock a lot out of the labor market. host we think there's really good effort to reevaluate a lot of our policy. >> scott, what data do you think applies here? >> well, ido le think the caller has a point on the one hand in that the upward mobility problem in ity fo the united states is in a lot of ways more of a problem of ca limited upward mobility for
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african-americans. family structure is a big part of the problem there. but i would add a couple other things. another very big problem is the c extent to which people of color, particularly african-americans, are concentrated in neighborhoods that are 350r7 there was a report that came out by a harvard economist essentially finding that if you it grow up in i a poor neighborhood it does impede your upward mobility. the other point, while i agree family structure is is incredibly llege de important, it's much broader among the african-american community. among people who don't have a college degree, two-thirds of 7-year-olds, i think was the last bit of research i saw, are living with just one parent. so this is really a huge national problem, i think, that transcends race for sure. >> we havef about a half hour left in our income inequality roundtable this morning on a monday morning on "the washington journal."
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ant anthony is waiting in atlanta georgia. goo anthony, good morning. >> caller: good morning, how are you doing? >> good. >> caller: i want to make a comment first about the obama quotes you made at the their we beginning. as you uesee, .01% doubled their e would wealth. but my question is what do you think would help the inequality are gap? you say education reform but people are going to school and then coming out in debt. so i just don't see where it's going? you know what i'm saying? >> scott, i'll let you start. coupl >> well let me identify a here i couple places in the report that i do agree with some remedies to reduce inequality. i think those are to the extent that there are government policies we have that are go unfairly protecting incumbent
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organizations, businesses or where we're just overpaying for things as a contractor. so i think in the report they talk about defense contracting and that in a lot of ways, if you live in washington, d.c. you can't help but notice just how many very wealthy people there are. the lost of living in the town ere ar ise definitely soaring. so i think there are areas we re could increasegu competition and smalle if we included some deregulations that help smaller businesses break into markets where currently we have large corporations who are lobbying to keep them out, that's something that is hurting the national lot of economy. i think gincreasingly a lot of is cro conservatives would get behind this and oppose this capitalism. >> michael?ul >> i think president obama is broadly right in everyone should get one more year ofd education than they would have otherwise, but we do see a lot of o
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high-skilled workers moving intoa lot low-skilled jobs throughout the great recession and it seems like a lot of the returns to higher education have kind of plateaued out. the idea we can educate ourselves out of this situation seems unlikely. the caller is correct onnden that end. our report has a lot of different suggestions. a couple would be emphasizing employment. under 5% as was in the late highe '90s, you'd see a lot more broad income growth. a higher minimum wagre holds up the low end of the distribution and compliments leaky organizations.salari a higher tax rate because it's a good way to raise revenue and provides a disincentive to stack up salaries. there's less informsment because of short-term markets. we discussed them inri the report. >> tallahassee florida, is next, brenda on the line for
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those who made under $25,000 last year. good morning brenda. >> caller: good morning, i just wanted to say that i notice overyears in the years in my retirement, i worked 35 years in the private business, and after 35 years i had about $30,000 in my retirement. my husband worked for the state for 35 years and after he retier retired, unfortunately, he passed away withr cancer, but he had over $300,000 in his retirement working for the ees an state. and i would like to know how the state employees and government employees end up with so much in their retirement while private workers don't fair so well. i thi i'll take my answer over the air. >> i think the major reason is that what's called defined benefit retirement plans are more common in the public sector than they are in the private c sector.antees y
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that is your employer guaranteesrs you a fixed amount of e retirement income depending on how many years you worked and what your pay was while you were working as opposed in the private sector where things are moving as employers contributing to private accounts that workersontrib are also contributing to themselves but not guaranteeing there's going to be a certain amount of retirement income every month upon retirement.en aefit lot of people on the left wish we had more of the former, the defined benefit plans that the public employees tend to have. the problem isare s what we're seeing in the public success tore is these pension plans have been nd it severely underfunded by lly star employers. it's really questionable whether a lot of folks, es prlly starting out today, are ever going to see that retirement savings in the end i.t it ends up that employers have prom to sort of takeis back some of get their promises and say you're not going to get as much as we promised you. then younger workers are getting
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less generous packages so near retires can get the full mic commitment that was promised to them years earlier. it's an unsustainable model is the problem. >> michael s this a place where there's some agreement? >> i'd have to know more about the specifics of the plans, but when fdr envisioned social security, he managed a ty three-legged stool.d, priva social security for one-third of savings it, private savings and then you'd have an employer pension.r how th and however that was in those days it's not in play now.gone now if one of those legs are give. ing out with private pensions becoming less generous, we need : to rely more on the other two. private savings isn't doing it. we should think more about social security. >>the fort lauderdale florida, is up next, sam for those who made under $25,000 last tyear. cou good morning, sam. >> caller: good morning, and thank you for the verypl ement interesting topic.
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the past couple calls have been geared towards retirement more than income quality relat i'm fortunate in the fact i was bec able to auretire relatively young and it's only because over the past 12 years i saved practically everything i made. a caller earlier talked about l fo the benefits of two incomes or not so much it two incomes but being married and how that was wonderful for saving money for retirement. it's only after i got divorced and got rid of a spending wife that i was able to save any ity money but that's another story.argume when it comes to income inequality argument what causes it, how to solve it, et cetera it comes down to as far as i'm decima concerned the fact that the unions have been decimated over the past years. republicans, conservatives capitalists went after them with a vengeance and they have been knocked down to very small
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membership. youugh go back to the '50s, '60s, my father was a union member. worked in a factory and made a good enough living that we even had a small home on the ta you can't do that nowadays. showe you take a look at those charts, the hosts showed one earlier sky wherero the upper income folks, ed their income has skyrocketed whereas the middle class or working class has stayed flat. what more proof do you need? there's other charts out there that show wealth, ownership of wealth where the top 1% own about 70% of the total wealth ofr the country whereas the lower 99% or whatever the number is owns practically nothing. so i don't have an answer to how
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to solve it. i don't presume to be as smart s as your guests there but nevertheless, the fact is that tter. income inequality exists and it's gotten worse over the years, not better.lking >> michael? >> i liked his point that he brought up a lot of callers were talking about retirement. in addition to opportunity, most people care about security. are they going to be homeless when they retire? are they going to have to starve? in addition to helping provide a broader base of opportunity throughome, schools and early childhood investments, sized government is good at providing income security. that's a thing that needs to be emphasized more going forward. i also want to make sure our report is not trapped in n nostalgia that may not have existed in the way we think. this is a forward-looking report with investments igon technology. there's a real opportunity goingoes forward. but it could end up in a world b where it all goes to the 1% or in a a world we're all broadly
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more prosperous for it. >> john is on the line, good morning. >> caller: good morning, how you doing? 196 i was calling to say something about the 1965 welfare reform. that's when all the inequality started. these people that got this ears. welfare and it's totally run rampant for the past 50 years. the income, the earned income credit, that's tax reform and everything and it's ridiculous that the government has supported these out and i understand if you go out and work there's jobs out
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there. people canic get a job.ey wou either picking up trash d not alongside the road or whatever. to hear they'd rather sit at home and not do nothing. that's my feeling. i'd like to hear what they say. >> well i think that the d have welfare system that we have in a l the country did have a lot of problems with it around to discouraging work. i think it still does to a 990' pretty large extent. but in the 1990s we implemented a number of reforms to cash will w benefits that people receive. they were time limited, they t wereo th work requirements, they were sent to the states and the states were allowed to be much more flexible about the rules for those poprograms. we made it more difficult for people to -- for poor people who didn't work. at the same time, the caller it eas alluded toie the earned income tax credit, which made it easier for
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poor people who do work. inco the research has showed that it really induced a lot of lower income people to work. single mothers work a lot more than they used to. their incomes are higher as a result so i think it was a successful package of t reforms and i think we ought to build on it and reform our programs further. but it's really a different issue, i ithink, than inequality t: and the changes in inequality that we have seen over time. ta >> i think the earned income taxfull-t credit is a good program. the question is if a person works full-time, should they be in poverty? i think as a society we tend to think the questionip is what do we do t about it? it's making employers chip in more through minimum wage and taxpayers. both marco rubio and president obama proposed similar plans to extend the itc. they want to extend it out to men as well.several
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>> on the campaign trail, several candidates one of the 16 ele key issues in the 2016 election? >> a lot depends on what wage growth doeske in the next few years. if we had really high income fferen growth year after year like in the late '90s, it would be effective. however, i think a lot of peoplesee more thought if we get below 6% we'd see more investment and wage if tha growth and wet haven't. if that trend continues, and i worry it will it's going to make us really re-examine how our examine is working. talking >> scott surprised hillary clinton is talking about this? several members of congress also talking about this as well. >> that's right. i think jeb bush is considering ople
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a are candidacy. so it really is an issue i ll think, that a lot of people are of going to talk about in 2016. i think you're going to see e and inequality as an opportunity as a bipartisan issue and people ection have very differents sets of on solutions depending on if they are on the left or the right. income inequality will be really interesting because if hillary clinton is the nominee, she and her husband have done very well since leaving the presidency and i think it's going to be tricky for her to talk about inqualify. >> we have 15 minutes left. in this segment to talk about this topic with our roundtable tabl of experts. the roosevelt institute and the cranst manhattan institute, we'll go to mary grace who has been waiting in rhode island on that line for those who made between $51,000 caller and $100,000 last year. good morning. >> caller: good morning, i want to thank c-span first for having
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both sides speak like you always but i do. ayou ar and i know some people get disgruntled thinking you favor one side more than the other, but i alms think you're fair and balanced. withe that, my question is for scott. you talk about how marriage really helps with inequality.ed the putting both incomes together. have you ever explored the variable of gay and lesbians and how they can contribute and? they have had so many problems in trying to get equal rights. and in some states as you know i they do not allow gay marriages and so forth. so i'd like to h know if you i explored that?a fe >> i have not personally. i think you have to distinguish a few issuesor. marriage is definitely important for inequality. it's more between the middle and bottom than it is for the top 1%
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versus everyone else. so when you think about o distin inequality you have to i distinguish between those two issues. i supportt ef marriage equality. would it effect income inequality a lot? lesbi probably not because just the numbers of gays and lesbians are relatively small and not all of philos them want to get married. but certainly support it. >> michael any thoughts on this topic? >> i generally agree. it's been a big change and one for o the the better.last >> mary ann is in pennsylvania rning. for those who made under $25,000, good morning. >> caller: good morning, gentlemen. until this country i decides to orts take the jobs and look at them as importance instead of paying sports players so much money because they can knock a little ball so far or movie stars or ceos. a few years ago the beginning of
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the 2008 i wound up getting a r. job in my early 50s as a case work er for children in youth. we started out at $27,000. i have two bachelor's degrees aching and a teaching certificate. that is horrendous for the importance of that job. it's a burn out job also. i lasted two and a half years and i was the fifth person to leave that year. i didn't leave until november. three more left after me. even until we decide, even teachers impo in 1998 i made $27,000 as a substitute teacher in a subject that wasn't even mine. we need to decide what's important and what isn't. people are putting their money in the wrong places but they don't seem to care as long as they have their dow thumbs on those telephones. pay attention, america. wake up, america. spread the wealth around.thou thank you. >> that's mary ann in pennsylvania with her thoughts.
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cornell is up next in waterford,e new jersey. that line for those who made between $51,000 and $100,000 last year good morning. >> caller: good morning, gentlemen, the problem with -- income inequality is that and i don't want to totally blame the republicans, but the problem is w is that they do not want to have the wealthy to pay just a little more so that we all can prosper. i live in new jersey where we have the highest taxes and insurance in the country. and i'll be 59 in february. i'm struggling and wondering how 20 i'm going to make it in d in retirement and i've been working two jobs for over 20 years. and i don't see no end in sight.
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now another problem is that children and grandchildren don't have a chance. the top 1 to 2% owns over 90% of the wealth. and they even have -- some even have able yo problem with raising the minimum wage. if you would have doubled the minimum wage, you'd still have problems. >> beforeel we go to the panel mo when youve say children and grandchildren don't have a chance, you mean a chance to move up into a different income bracket? >> caller: well to survive where wages are and the top 1 to 2% do not want to let the wealth be spread around. the unions are what created the middle class. the problem is in the public
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sector, unions are a little higher because it's usually y friends and family and they are not going to mess up. i'm talking about state and local, but in the private sector, unions are are down to 7% or less. >> got yourmo point. scott, mobility issues, one of the issues that the caller is talking about there.en t >> yeah, and i think it's important to distinguish, i think, between the state of things and whether things are d if y getting worse or not. fifth so we do have upward mobility in the united states that is too limited. if you start in the bottom fifth, there's about a 40% chance you're going to remain there as an adult yourself. there's only a 30% chance you're going to make it to the middle class or higher. that's a big problem. now is it connected to income inequality? i don't think there's a whole lot of evidence. economic mobility has notne in novem fallen. there's a newng paper that came out in november that was looking
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at mobility in canada sweden orse and the united states that found that actually for men it looks like the united states actually doesn't have worse upward mobility than canada t and sweden. so despite sweden having much less inequality than the united states. i do think it's important to be clear about what problem we're trying to solve and then to be very hard headed about whatim lem the causes of the problem are. >> michael, i'll let you talk about this as well, but want to show ourth viewers this chart from business insider. the probability of a child entering the topto e 20% based on 0% bas that child's parents. you can see for the lowest 20% shs very little chance the child will end upca entering the top 20%. you can see the chances going up as the parents income levels go up. >> the most important decision a child is going to make in his or her life is what parents they are going to have and that's not
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a decision they have a lot of leeway with.0 and 30 we see that as income inequality has gone up in the past 30 years, opportunity has stayed relatively it was increasing during the '40s according to new research that's coming out from brown university. sot th when you look at in the past couple decades it may be flat but it's stillar really low relative to our peer countries. this is kind of the pop sit of what we would imagine. our inequality is high but our op opportunity is high relative to the countries of europe.we we're seeing that not in the m same way we'd like to. >> just a few minutes left with ver, our panel. dover, florida, on that line for those who made under $25,000 last year. good morning. >> caller: i am retired, but. i did just want to tell you a little my story as fast as i can. i wasn't just very poor, i was
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very very poor. and whe my dad had a 4th grade education, my mom had an 8th grade. they followed the fruit -- i'm 83 years old. they followed the fruit and vegetable gleans and what have followed fruit and vegetable and what have you, even as a teenager they went to new york and worked and i stayed with a cousin of mine here and we never got one went red cent of government assistance. when i got out of high school, i went to work at a bank, worked for four years. i happened to marry a man with aching three degrees, accounting, theology, and ended up getting a teaching certificate and also acause master's in administration. he was a school teacher. and he chose to teach school because
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he loved it and it was important to him and he saw how children that didn't have moms at home and didn't do as well and he insisted that i stay home and take care of our children and run the home. and that's what i did. he never made a living, but we ntee i lived off what he made. >> hey reba. me >> he i'll guarantee you if you figure that every dollar he made from the time he started working until he passed away three years ago, he did not make a million dollars in his lifetime. but right now i'm worth a half million. it's not what you make, it's k on y what you do with it. >> reba, as you look back on your life story you just told us is there one policy that was has
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d especially helpful to you or is this something that you feel like you and your husband did on? your own? >> do what? do i feel like it was -- someth >> was there one federal policy that was especially helpful to you or is this something you felt like you did on your own? >> caller: well, we did it on our own, we never got any help from anybody, never. yet i raised three kids every one of them went to college every one of them sat in my family room couple years ago at different times and said momma i had the best childhood a kid could have. wed ki were the house, we furnished all the balls, bats gloves fishing poles, kick balls and everything for the whole community, and we were just -- and all the kids wanted to come y to our house. i mean, i was at home and my kids could bring anybody home as long as they were decent becausee.
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i ran this house, believe me. they all knew who was in charge. >> sounds like a good place to grow up in dover, florida. re thanks for the call and for watching. i will on, let scott jump in. >> she brings up an interesting point that we haven't talked on, a little around unions in the 1950s and '60s. one of the things that's changed over time is that a lot more t women work, a lot of women choose not to, and certainly rk mor want to support that for those who do, but a lot of women wanted to work more than they did in the mid 20th century and we organized our institutions, our rules if you want to talk about rules, in a way where we male discouraged married women from working and we believed that a aid single male breadwinner should be able to support a family on his own and we you know, we
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paid men a kind of bonus in a workin senseg to essentially maintain that h this traditional arrangement of men working, women at home. as that has changed over time and women got more opportunities in the workplace, this is one ofagnation the reasons you see real wage stagnation among men it is a shift from the old world to a more modern world where women have benefitted, where men have lost the kind of bonuses they got in the past and where to some extent income has shifted at the top as folks at the top have realized that we are not in this world where we believe thathat men should be able to support a family on one income, so i think that's one of the big things that's changed over time that te you do see in stats. >> and michael, about a minute left in this segment. your thoughts. >> for one women work force
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will be important in the fall, ct the people look at institutions around child care paid family leave that effects women's ability to maintain a career. i am curious how the timing really works out. d income it shows there are a lot of social norms built out of institutions that effect income -- >> roosevelt institute if you t want to check out their recent paper on their prescriptions for this issue of income
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. >> rand paul called for more bipartisanship. more candidates with recent books include former governor jeb bush in immigration wars. he along with clint bowl i can argue for new immigration policies. in "stand for something" john
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kasich calls for return to traditional american values. former virginia senator james webb looks on his time serving in the military and senate in "i heard my country calling." bernie sanders announced his intention to seek democratic nomination for president. his book "the speech" is a printing of his filibuster against tax cuts and in "promises to keep" joe biden explains his guiding principles. ben carson calls for greater individual responsibility to preserve america's. another politician running for president, lincoln chafe ee in "against the tide" reannounced his time serving as republican
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in the senate. carly fiorina from hewlett packard shares lessons learned from difficulties and triumphs in rising to the challenge. louisiana governor bobby jindal criticizes obama administration and explains why conservative solutions are needed in washington in leadership and crisis. finally in a time for truth another declared candidate ted cruz recounts his journey from cuban immigrant son to u.s. senate. look for his book in june. transition and infrastructure issues including amtrak are being debated in congress. on the next washington journal, we talk to david jolly of florida. then a conversation with representative gerald nadler on whether congress should renew
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nsa surveillance that expires in june. washington journal live each morning at 7:00 eastern. join the conversation on facebook and twitter. coming up we are going to chicago where leaders of cable and telecommunication industry gathered for the annual cable show called the internet and television expo. up next federal communications tom wheeler on the adoption of open internet rules and why the internet service providers should be regulated. then a panel of cable ceos from companies including time warner and cox communications who criticize the new rules.
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>> thank you. great to be here -- wait a minute. it is great to be here at ints the internet and television expo. you know cable isn't in the title of the show michael powell now said cable is a dirty word. i remember when the show was very creatively named something like catz 77 or things like this. then some young whipper snapper, and barbara you are, because nothing happens without barbara york, changed the name to the cable show. and now you've moved on from that. congratulations on once again
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reimagining this industry and gathering. reflecting back on the days of catv and forward to broadband era is to trace an amazing path from community antenna television to the expansion of television and now beyond. to broadband. you deserve congratulations for what you achieved as cable companies, as video companies and as network builders. you also deserve and alfred may comment about this you also deserve straight talk about what it means now that you are first
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and foremost broadband companies. you have pledged as an industry to assure that the internet remains open and free. and in that goal we are in violent agreement. we do differ however, on what that means. we part company according to your recently filed motion papers over the so-called internet conduct standard, the requirement that internet service providers not engage in conduct that impairs an open and free internet and goes beyond the obvious bright line rules of blocking tlot egg and prioritization.
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the internet conduct standard if you will is the going forward rule. now often people say to me you know, tom, i know that you won't do anything crazy in this internet conduct standard but what about those people that follow you? and my response is i take you at your word that you will protect an open internet. so what about those people that follow you. the purpose of the open internet order is not to create an obstacle course to test the ingenuity of isps and how they structure certain activities, it is rather to address broad outcomes not just the bright
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line rules. the purpose of the general conduct standard is to address effects that are and the thet cal to the open concept. mainly not to interfere with or disadvantage access to the public internet. so to internet connection arrangements. on june 12th when this order goes into effect, there will be in effect strong protections to shield against harm to an open internet. and from that point on we cannot
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go backwards. now, beyond the open internet however, i want to celebrate today the two great accomplishments of this industry. accomplishments that run from your roots to today and one great new challenge created by your evolution beyond cable television to become the nation's dominant broadband provider. part one of the story begins with primary business of cable systems when it was video. cable was an investor in infrastructure, a fierce competitor, and an innovator. the first accomplishment of that era, of course, was the coaxing
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coaxingal wiring of america. it began as a remarkably entrepreneurial but also fragmented industry. it required tremendous amount of civil engineering and ingenuity, the extraordinary diverse circumstances of our far flung nation. and it was accomplished against the determined opposition of a telephone industry that recognized from the very beginning the threat inherent in a second wire into the home and office. and it was accomplished despite legal constraints from the industry's offerings that were downright hostile. now, as everybody in this audience knows the investment
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that sets the foundation for today's industry was undertaken for purposes that have almost nothing to do with what the industry has become. what began as a coaxing yal cable network, designed to transmit distant broadband signals has become literally an essential part of our country's infrastructure.distant broadband signals has become literally an essential part of our country's infrastructure. in the intervening 25 or so years, the resulting hybrid fiber coax network has become an enviable combination of cost effective efficiency and
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scaleability. and it has become the enabler of one of the most transformative developments in human history. in the process it has provided an illustration of the challenge, of the challenge and response, that's what i want to say, the challenge and response nature of competition. this is a theme that i tried to focus on during my time at the fcc. that for every challenge there's always a response. two decades ago as the cable industry began to expand its broadband capabilities the telephone industry responded by unleashing dsl a technology
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that had long existed but had not been deployed in american homes. both cable and telco customers benefitted and both businesses flourished. the resulting telephone and cable competition helped bring us to where we are today. vastly better transmission speed and unimaginably larger more vibrant internet echo system. the second great accomplishment of your industry was the expansion of programming that you and to be fair bbs industry, that your distribution network facilitated. the great increase in programming is reflection of an effect that your industry's
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entrepreneurial energy and investment have had on the broader echo system. good distribution systems do that sort of thing. they invigorate new users. you know, today's viewers may not be fully conscious of it, but the increase in the quantity and quality of programming is according to professor david waterman, the fcc chief economist, the most astounding chapter in the history of television. that story can be told in a quantitative fashion as well. the number of cable tv networks has grown from a handful in the mid 1970s to over 900 today. and the fcc itself stopped counting at 565 in our annual video competition report for
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2006. in investment terms cable networks spend only -- spent only about 250 million on programming in 1983. 30 years later that figure exploded over 26 billion, twice the program spending of all national broadcast networks combined. and the result is an enormous inventory of programming. that expansion of programming is seen and heard in shows that push the boundaries of creativity, the so pran owes home land "mad men," all of which appear on cable channels. it also greatly expanded sports programming. we all remember when it was the
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game of the week and that was all you could see. now you can watch the ohio state buckeyes every week all the way to the national championship. you know i would get an ohio state line in here somewhere. but if as some say this is truly the golden age of television, that it is you that made this possible. like your entry into internet access in the '90s, the creation of so many programming possibilities in this century spurred others to respond, including new and potential competitors who use your broadband pathways to deliver video to their customers, which brings us to part two.
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last year at this gathering i said that you had become more than about video that you had become broadband, and that your news business had become and would be going forth broadband. and that's true. last year, the cable industry hit a critical tipping point. in the second quarter of 2014 and the first time, number of broadband subscribers exceeded cable tv subscribers, and the trend has continued. you have wisely changed the name of the cable show to the internet.
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but there's a more profound change, you're no longer the cable industry as michael powell said yesterday. you are the leading association of leading broadband providers. it's something to celebrate. now the recent decision of comcast and time warner to abandon their proposed merger has relevance to this point. brian roberts' leadership and his simple and poignant statement that it is time to move on was not only a thoughtful response


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