tv Washington Journal CSPAN May 14, 2010 7:00am-10:00am EDT
here is eric kanter, who was the minority whip, who was the sponsor of this -- who is the sponsor of this, and house majority leader, steny hoyer, discussing the youtube. >> led to stop the spending now. that is why we have started and launched the you cut program. and if you have incremental steps, fine, let's join in that,
but let's stop the spending, mr. speaker. >> i do not want to get too personal on this, but what would you say about the spending on the washington rail between washington and richmond? >> we have supported job generating projects. the studies in the metropolitan area in -- from which i, and represent, virginia could grow 165,000 jobs with that kind of investment. that has always been my position. but when we are looking at some of the items that we are discussing here on the you cut options, these are options that are niceties. host: what do you think about the gop you cut program. is it a good idea or a gimmick?
the numbers are on the screen. what do you think about this you cut program? a good idea, or a gimmick? we want to hear from you. if you're a couple of things that have been posed to the iran eric cantor's blogging, or on the representatives aside. "z and this is some of the things -- these are some of the things that the gop has proposed cutting on their site, and include taxpayer subsidized
union activities, is how they phrase it. the $600 million in savings. should they also be subsidized by the taxpayer for their official functions? and some comments that have come in on you tube from citizens include proposing budget and staff cuts by 90% as a beginning. another one -- trying to do this piecemeal will just generate the usual "what about me" mentality. what do you think about this? waynesboro, north carolina, your
first up. good morning. caller: good morning, i do not trust the republican cuts, executive because i'm not sure they will not revert back to their old habit of spending from a deficit surplus to trillion dollar deficit. i think it is for political gain, to gain seats in the house, etc., and i do not believe they have been genuine. they have done this as well behind closed doors. and in the future, i hope that they will actually think about the american people. when you start talking about cutting spending, you are talking about dispensing pain. and they have not done enough research to do it adequately. they have just done something willy-nilly and we are supposed to accept it.
host: wendell, mass., claude, a democrat. caller: first to live like to put out there what i have learned on c-span this week. i have learned that the government prevailing wage is $79 an hour plus extremely generous benefits. i think i would be something, from the trash guide to the president, $79 per hour. -- from the trashman to the president, 7 $9 per hour. -- $79 per hour. and as an aside, i believe the yuko it should be retroactive maybe eight years back. -- the you cut should be retroactive maybe years back. host: hanover, pa., tom, what do you think?
caller: the democratic senator from new york yesterday was saying that even with the stimulus package that they garden, only 50 policemen fell under the heading of receiving some of it and they have less policeman -- fewer policemen now in new york than they did during the world trade center bombing and with these attached to a tax there are fewer policeman. -- with these attempted attacks there are fewer policemen. that makes me feel safe. host: next call comes from marble falls, texas, shirley, on the democrats line. what do you think about this tax cut? caller: i do not believe anything the des moines -- the republican said. they have done nothing this past zero year except to try to keep the democrats from doing
anything -- this past year, except to try to keep the democrats from doing anything at all. i think the democrats are doing anything they can do to create jobs and keep this country going and i wish the republicans would shut up. host: your ok with federal spending the way it currently is? caller: yes, i am. host: newberry, south carolina, independent line, what do you think? caller: i think they should cut 10% of everything and do away with all of those union people that are getting paid by the taxpayers. cut everything 10%. cut the recession down to six months and pass a budget and come home. host: this is in politico.
on and the stoppage on certain bills is ridiculous. i got three weeks of unemployment last year. i probably will be the -- one of the next ones losing his house because of all that is going on in the senate. these people need to get together and square away. sure, it is fine, party to party, but on the same token we are here losing everything. host: henderson, nev., john, republican. caller: [unintelligible] host: and we're going to move on to greenville, ohio, dawn, hello. caller: i want to thank c-span for everything you are doing. and also on this gop cutting program, i thought that this should be 20% may be two to five
years ago. and on immigration, i still think if they should have -- if they had done what they should have done back in the 1970's and 1980's, we would not have the trouble with immigration that we have. and the trouble with 911 happened. that is my feeling this morning. host: from the "new york times" the senate amends, financial overall bill.
back to your calls on you cut. a good idea or a gimmick? theresa in indiana, a democrat. caller: i want to say it is definitely to make them look good and this is total gimmick. the thing is, they do not want anything to be done, but when they get in there, they never have tried to live like those that have benefits. they have never tried to live like that.
that is going to be really different. if they will switch places with those -- with the class that they would like to put us all in and label lust for needing help, for someone on social security. i do not know how in the and has done it. it is not fair. it is ruled by republicans and that is not a good plan. host: clinton township, mich., dorothy, you are on the air. caller: i did not catch the first part of the program, not exactly sure what the you cut program is, but i'm definitely for cutting in any area possible. i remember how the republicans were talking about the tour walks, as contraception, all these programs that did not create jobs. people are saying debt -- a
couple of calls ago they are doing everything to create jobs. there has nothing -- there is nothing that has been done that will create jobs. any place they can't cut any amount of money, they should be doing that. and the democrats as well, obama just bailed out corporations. obama came in there and the troubled with the corporate people are getting. host: mel bourne, fla., early on the independent line. the yuca program, a good idea, or a gimmick? caller: i think it is a fantastic idea and if the democrats don't get on board with this and come up with their five ideas as well, we're losing. plus, look at the cynical side of this. there is a gold mine of opportunity, of opera -- of programs the republicans have supported. and it also shows greater
partisanship. -- great bipartisanship. host: have you submitted any ideas to this? caller: to the you cut? no, this is the first i've heard of it. host: georgia, you are on the air. caller: the democrats do not have to own up to being responsible. they just blame it on the voters. that is not leadership. host: do you see any areas in the federal budget that can be cut? caller: i think we could probably cut the military. that would be one way to start. host: overland park, kan., howard, you are on the republican line. caller: 8 quickly a couple of questions on your programming and c-span budget -- a quick couple of questions on your programming in c-span budget, how much of your budget are you
kidding? host: as a private corporation i do not think that matters. caller: i have already called 100 times this morning. host: you have called 100 times this morning? where are you going with this? caller: i just want to know why you do not answer the republicans line. host: of course we do. we have three lines and they are all being run. do you have something to get to? caller: this spending is creating new jobs. and republicans proposed ways to create 21 million jobs. it has created nothing.
host: john from new york city, a good idea or gimmick, the yuko program? -- the you cut program? caller: the republicans, everything that they do, they use for their own purposes. they manipulate everything. they sound so cynical. i think it is a good idea, but i think there is an ulterior motive for doing it because i think they will do anything to get their point, even distort facts. and the garden called ahead of me, -- and the guy that called ahead of me, i called mistakenly on the republican line. they made me hang up and call back on this line. host: thank you very much. the lead story in the politico this morning --
crompton, md., kathy on the republican line, what do you think about the you cut program? caller: i believe firmly in the idea. i think it is our chance as americans to be heard. i think we have data a lot of practice as citizens in cutting back -- we have had a lot of practice as citizens in cutting back. perhaps our input could be used to the advantage of the economy. we are broker, both in our homes and in our country, and i think that if it is time to cut we should have a say.
host: john in ohio, independent. caller: i think this year cut program would be a great idea. ordaz -- you cut program would be a great idea. i think the suggestion for congress would be to cut their pay to zero. i think that would be a good idea because none of them do anything good for the american people. host: who is your representative and what you think of him or her? caller: i think is jon casey. host: his running for governor. spartanburg, south carolina, what do you think? caller: the horse is already out of the gate.
this is just another phony baloney attempt by republicans to try to garnish some votes over people's anxiety. i've -- i agree with the lady that called earlier, democrats should probably jump on to this and will of all of the defense contracts. -- and poll of all of the defense contracts. host: this is from the "washington times" poll in kentucky. rand paul, the son of ron paul, is leading. the primary is on tuesday. he is currently averaging about 44.5% to the next person who is trade grayson -- trey grayson, at 25.5%, was endorsed by mitch
mcconnell. kid seavey writes from hola, mass., "just ictu years ago not a single democrat step forward -- just two years ago not a single democrat step forward. now 11 people are lining up to challenge her, seven of them republicans and four independents. grindle, new york, joan, a democrat, the you cut program, a good idea or a gimmick?
caller: i do not think it matters because they are not doing what we want them to now. i think we have to remember that politicians have a completely different agenda than the people they serve. they keep funding the 800 military bases that we have a row the world that are there to protect corporate interests. -- are around the world that are there to protect corporate interests. we're the ones that pay the money and the things that come back, that is what they cut, like education and safety issues, medicare, that kind of thing. they cut what is good for us and they fund everything that is bad for us. host: venice, fla., clyde, independent. caller: actually, where the cutting should be done is they should cut progressive income
tax and replace it with a flat tax or a national sales tax. eliminate corporate income taxes, eliminate the death tax, all of this would generate jobs. all federal income taxes should require a supermajority 3/5 to vote of congress, and limit it to 20% of gdp. and cut government 20% every year. this would get people going and create jobs. this is what we need. this is where the independents are moving in that direction. this is why the democrats and republicans will not fix the economy. they will continue moving in the direction they are moving in. host: as an independent in florida, right now, who are you voting for in the senate race? caller: in the senate race,
that is from the "new york times." steve from new york, on the republican line, you are up next. what do you think about the you could program? caller: the republican choice represented by erick kanter, it gives a very small cut. steny hoyer did come with a multibillion-dollar program for a high-speed rail line in washington d.c. to cut, but that is not available. that is a republican program,
the richmond to washington d.c. high-speed rail. erick kanter said it will make 165,000 jobs. the democrats need to step up and include a bunch of cuts like steny hoyer suggested. you know, cut that high-speed rail. the republicans want to cut the democratic programs. the democrats have to come up with some cuts in the republican programs. that is the only way it works. host: let's cut all of our foreign aid until the money is back. this is the front page of the wall street journal this morning.
plymouth, mass., chuck on the independent line. chuck, what do you think about the you cut program, a good idea or a gimmick? caller: it is a gimmick. anything that is not talking about jobs or trade at this time are just gimmicks. host: all right, and you have more? go ahead. caller: two things. if i buy something i pay 5%
sales tax. if i do not i pay no tax. i want a 1% derivatives tax. second, get rid of the income tax. replace it with a net asset tax. i want to know what you are worth and i want 3% of it. if your a billionaire, you pay the most. if you are poor and over your head in debt, you pay nothing. host: let's leave it there. alec, a democrat, a cambridge, massachusetts. caller: at first i was confused by the boys are options. they did not seem to make any sense. but i wanted to vote anyway. the last issue seemed somewhat quickerable -- clickable so
i seemed interested in that. it is a gimmick. it would be a good idea it was actually done for real. but that is probably not going to happen. i am a little disappointed at how blatant it was. and i'm also surprised that the other callers did not bring this up before. host: this is a picture of a familiar face in the "new york times" this morning. this is the melbar pros who got elected to the philippine senate again -- amelda marcos who got elected to the philippine senate again. larry, independent line, hello. caller: i would cut the
congressional pay checks. i mean, at the beginning of the program you were saying that they were not working that hard. host: i was not saying that. i was reading an article. caller: oh, yeah, you never have an opinion. you have the patience of job, i swear. host: no, i do not have that leader. caller: -- i do not have that either. caller: another cut would be to go after sadly, burk and gold is still sitting in jail for. host: the epa unveils a new rule on polluters.
we do not need permission from any party to lead our opinions be known. we are calling you, for example. i think it is a lot of bone. -- bunk. this is another way for republicans to get people in back of them to cut programs. that is the same thing that was done when roosevelt started and put of the wpa and the tba to help americans get back to work when they were sleeping in cars and using newspapers for blankets. then the republicans said, oh, this is failing. you have to make cuts. and they prevailed upon -- prevailed upon roosevelt so much that he started to cut and he started to lose the jobs he put out. what has to be done is to tax the rich. i know it really hurts.
take back some of the money that the oil companies made. these guys are dumping in the gulf. take back their gains from the last quarter. host: and we will be talking with senator jeff bingaman, who was chairman of the energy committee in the senate -- who is chairman of the energy committee in the senate, in about 10 or 15 minutes. carl on the independent line, what you think? caller: i want to cry. you have been taking calls for 35, 40 minutes, and has one caller mentioned entitlements at all? i do not think i have heard anyone. this you cut program is good. cutting federal spending is fine. i certainly do not want to knock it. i think it is tokenism and what these guys need to do is get serious about cutting entitlement spending.
they are talking about taking baby steps when they need to go 1,000 miles. host: how would you cut entitlements? caller: take the example of the concord coalition or the peter g. peter foundation. you need to do means testing, raise the age of qualifications. and you need to probably raise the cap on medicare and social security contributions. there is defense spending as well that i think could be cut. i am on both sides of the offense, federal pensions, military pensions, it all has to be looked at. they could cut every bit of non- defense discretionary spending and we are still in the hole. host: what kind of work you do in dallas? caller: i am an orthodontist. host: i misspoke. coming up about 10 minutes or so is michael sheehan. will be talking about
canton, ga., a democrat, elizabeth, hello. caller: what i would like to speak about is we need money. i do not know anywhere in the private world here in america or abroad that you go 10 years or 20 years and collect a pension. we have people in congress that work for congress, they put 10 years in and they can collect a pension. i imagine that would have to be a phenomenal amount of money. the military, you can get out of her eyes when you do not know which way to go and you put 20 years -- you get out of high school and you do not know which way to go, and you put 20 years into the military, ok. but you go into the government and you work for 10 years and
you can collect a pension. nowhere else in the world can i see that you can collect a pension on those terms. i can't imagine congress wanting to vote that went out because it would not be lining their pockets. host: kings mountain, n.c., melody on the republican line. what do you think about your party's yuko program? caller: i think it is -- you cut program? caller: i think it is fabulous. i have already voted. host: which one of the five did you vote for? caller: i voted for an entitlement welfare program, the 2.7 billion that the person does not have to work -- the 2 billion at that the person does not have to work. host: the program that was greeted to incentivize states to increase their work caseload
without requiring able-bodied adults to get a job or the war as move of taxpayer assistance. caller: that is it. i am just appalled that people are calling in finding conspiracies in this. our country is going down. we are bankrupt, and people have to get rid of partisan bickering and get with the program. i think what eric kanter is doing is a wonderful thing and i do not think that he has ulterior motives. i think he is an honest man. host: can i play devil's advocate? caller: yes. host: do you think if the democrats have put this up that they would describe it as a program to incentivize states to increase their welfare caseloads without requiring able-bodied adults to work at job training or otherwise prepared to move of taxpayer assistance? the think it would have a different way of phrasing that?
you think there is a bit of propaganda there? caller: that could be. i will not in phatic we say, no, there is not. but i think eric cantor -- i will not emphatically say, no, there is not. but i think eric kanter is trying to do something. and even though we do vote for this, it is doubtful that nancy pelosi will do anything. you can bring it to a vote, but we will see what happens after that. host: what you do in kings mountain? caller: i am a nurse. host: how long have you been a nurse? caller: many, many years. host: do you have to work today? caller: no. host: next call, roger, from dallas. caller: we have to control spending and i think maybe the most practical way to do that is an across-the-board spending freeze and as we move forward
the will eventually reduce the spending and balance the budget. ho: lackawanna, n.y., aggie, you have the last word on this topic. caller: this is sort of like a contract on america. they have no idea, republicans. they're just saying you cut. i saw something where they interviewed a the day and they ask her what she would cut and gm and hawed. -- and she hemmed and hawed. since the 1980's they have been going down in taxes. if you look on the certificate, you can see that business has paid less taxes than the public. they have got a plan. they do not want to pay more taxes. they want to pay less.
they do not -- they want to take all of the profits and do not pay on it. you cannot charge prices and everything and then say you will not pay any money. host: had become a are you concerned about federal spending -- aggie, are you concerned about federal spending or do you think it is okay? caller: i think everyone is afraid. we are not the broker. they could? as a tiny little bit. -- we are not that broke. they could contact us a little tiny bit. -- tax us a little tiny bit. i worked my if share. i worked 40 something years. i did my share. host: what kind of work did you
do it up in lackawanna? caller: i used to be a nurse, but now i am a stay at home old person because i cannot walk so well. host: what do you think about the health care bill? caller: i'm glad they got the health care for the people. i am in medicare person and i switched to that advantage because you get a bit more with it. and if they take that away, that is okay. at least i can buy into a supplement. the party did not like about medicare is in no dental. i have to pay -- the part i did not like about medicare is no dental. i have to pay out of pocket. host: thanks for calling in. the final article before we go to a new topic, this is from the "pittsburgh lizet." itar-tass -- "pittsburg gazette
your current it talks about the privacy concerns on facebook. àt coming up is michael sheehan, former deputy commissioner of county -- of counter-terrorism for the new york police department to discuss a counter- terrorism. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010]
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booktv.org. >> "washington journal" continues. host: michael sheehan is the former deputy commissioner for county tourism for the new york police department. he is also a former ambassador at large for canada terrorism for the state department. mr. sheehan -- for counter- terrorism for the state department. mr. sheehan, if you could, give us the operation to find fisa shahzad's co-conspirators -- faisal shahzad's co- conspirators. guest: he gave an indication of a of two things, that number one, he had money coming in from training camps in pakistan and that there were others of the training camps there. the main objectives were to find his context here and there. they're starting to make arrests dot -- his contacts kiron there.
they're starting to make arrests. host: is it going well? guest: it is. he is talking. they have leads on his phones and computers. host: what kind of tools as the nypd and the fbi, etc., have and what kind of tools you think they should have to prevent domestic terrorism? guest: i have written extensively about what i think is the most important tool to prevent terror attacks in the united states, and that his intelligence. investigations is a term and basically, it is the type of thing that you will see on television against organized crime. and what do we use to break up mons? we use informants, undercover operations, wiretaps. you have to penetrate an organization to bring it down. building walls are around our savoy's and around times square is impossible. -- around our subways and around
times square is impossible. host: did the patriot act give us more tools? guest: not only that, but it a clarified for law enforcement what it could do. it opens things up for investigation, which was a very sensitive thing. those rules were somewhat blurry and the patriot act clarified its so that the fbi and the nypd could open up an investigation against someone plotting violence against americans. host: was one thing that they do not have right now that you would like to see law enforcement have as a tool? guest: i think that a lot of authorities were given to wiretaps for investigations after 9/11 and i think it has swan -- the pendulum has swung back a little bit in the other direction out. i think that -- the other
direction now. i think that they need to have these operations in a responsible way. host: we are talking about preventing domestic terrorism with michael sheehan. the numbers are on the screen. please allow 30 days between your calls. mr. sheehan, my guess is that when you talked about investigating intelligence on the intelligence level, worried about civil liberties. guest: our government does not have the power to intrude without very careful boundaries into our private lives. they are not allowed to look over our shoulder, looked in our
computers, listen to our phones without probable cause. at the same time, organizations that are quite frankly tequilas in large numbers, we have to protect ourselves -- are quite frankly, looking to kill us in large numbers, we have to protect ourselves. host: and there are cameras in times square. we will do a segment later about this on the program. are those cameras here -- helpful? guest: wherever we have cameras in new york city it has been shown to have a a drug crime in the area. it is a deterrent -- it has shown to have dropped crime in the area. it is a deterrent. and for terrorism is important because it is a bit of a deterrent. and if they are successful, at least you can roll up the organization that is plotting the attack and prevent them from
doing it again. but cameras by themselves, or alert t-shirt vendors and an alert public will not prevent a well-organized, well constructed bomb from being exploded in times square. you have to get at the organization before it puts the bomb out there. host: from what you know about the faisal shahzad case, what could have prevented him from driving that suv into times square? anything? guest: nothing, and nor should we have prevented that from happening. we live in an open society. it is an open place. we want nyc to be open. tourists from investors, people living and working there, i live on the island of manhattan. we cannot shut ourselves within our walls. and we cannot allow terrorists to make us lock ourselves up. you cannot prevent someone from driving a car anywhere in the u.s.
perhaps you have walls around the capital here in washington, but we live in an open society. host: good that man have been caught -- could that man have been caught, or followed? guest: i have been very critical of intelligence failures. for instance, -- in this case, i do not see a breakdown in intelligence. this guy was operating below their radar. seemingly by himself here in the u.s. he had some support in pakistan, but it does not seem to be part of the big structure. i do not see many failures here, but you have to continue to be aggressive to keep guys like this from becoming part of a more complex organization.
is profiling, in your view, it -- an important part guest: of this profiling -- is profiling, in your view, an important part of this? guest: profiling is a controversial term, but of course we employed profiling. police of one out of line at the airport for a closer review, that is profiling. do we profiled american citizens? that is a difficult term. we do not. but you might have behavioral profiling. racial profiling by ethnic profile in, that can be a dangerous turn -- a dangerous path to go down. but when i was with the nypd, i always provided by -- always
reminded my detectives that the biggest killer before 9/11 was timothy mcveigh. you cannot profiled some sort of person. you have to give up their organizations and people plotting new violence and not just get lazy and try to profile. host: michael sheehan is a graduate of west point, a retired lieutenant colonel, served in the white house under three national security advisers and two presidents, former ambassador a large for the state, and assistant peacekeeping operations secretary general for the u.n. currently, what are you doing? guest: currently, i work with people to train them on terror -- counter-terrorism and things. and i'd do care to terrorism -- and i do counter terrorism of
west point as well. host: anthony in arizona, your honor with mr. sheehan. go ahead. mr. sheehan is reconnecting his microphone. i will listen in nature that we year. caller: thank you for the opportunity to pass on an ad -- to pass on a suggestion that i have. based on my experience, the most significant way to defend against domestic terrorism is a is to infiltrate. guest: i absolutely agree. i think it is the key way.
these are the intelligence instruments their use. infiltrate by putting informants, undercover agents, and then you get the authority to listen to their phones and wiretaps. that is the bread and butter, the blocking and tackling of infiltrating a terrorist organization, organized crime, or narcotics or whatever. host: it is it -- is a different situation when it is combating domestic terrorism? guest: it is, and the reason it is more politically sensitive than organized crime or narcotics trafficking is that often, you might be looking at people that may just be a political dissidents. they may be angry at the government and they are allowed to be angry at the government. you are allowed to express their frustration and you are allowed to meet with people to express that. what you're not allowed to do is to meet with people and expressed the frustration and plot violence against people or property. you have to be very careful when
you are looking at people not to just look at political protest, which is a cherished right, verses a criminal act, which is a conspiracy to conduct of violence. and that is difficult, to deter someone before the crime. in law enforcement, you go after someone that has already committed a crime. that is why it is politically sensitive. . .
> guest: i have read the report and i have heard the interpretations. i do not think it is that star k. we want to prevent that. we want to have a cool head about how we react to terrorism. timothy mcveigh, who was the second largest killer of americans in the attack in oklahoma city -- worry much more about al-qaeda and that family of organizations than i do the other types of groups in the united states. they have a very determined in theology -- ideology and they want to do a lot of harm. that is the number one threat. the people i know in the federal government, including the department of homeland security, understands that.
host: next call comes from riverside, ohio, a democrat, go ahead. caller: thank you for all that you do to protect our country and americans. you had the former head of the cia on. i've read a lot about what mcgovern has said, as well as the 9/11 commission on what took place. we have heard over and over again, and i do not want to make any excuses for people using violence to deal with problems, but i've also gone on line and listened to the fellow who blew up our cia agents in afghanistan. he did a videotape of why he was doing this. we have heard over and over again that the israeli palestinian conflict is one of
the root causes for the anchoger that many of these people feel, as well as our military bases on their land. guest: there are many motivations on what drives a terrorist to act against us. they have been doing this a long time. this started in 1993 when it blew up the world trade center. they blew up our embassies in 1998. there's a long history of action here. and of course, our forces overseas, their political
problems. they have a religious justification, which is really a twisting of islam for their own justification and use of violence. in this case, you'd see a personal issue, whether it's financial issues, sexual issues, problems with identity, and you find three things normally come together. political anchor, religious justification, and some personal issue that drives them into terrorism. they drive into this narrative bin laden uses. he will move those issues around. if there's any one thing that we can do that will appease this group of people. host: is the pakistan issued a problem? the fact that the latest group from times square seems to be
coming from pakistan? guest: pakistan has always been a problem. 1993, world trade center bombing, the guy came from pakistan and went back to pakistan after the attack. caliche momthe 9/11 bomber camem pakistan. yes, pakistan is a big problem. london, the subway bombings in london in 2005 -- pakistan. it's been a problem for a long time and remains a problem. right now, that is where al- qaeda is, in western pakistan. there's a group of organizations over their their their very prominent -- over there that are very prominent. host: as the u.s. needed domestic police force in pakistan? guest: i do not think so. the fbi is in charge of all
these investigations. i've certainly had my issues with the fbi when i was at nypd. at the end of the day, we work very well together. i think the fbi has made great strides since 9/11 in shifting its culture to be one more on intelligence as opposed to investigation, trying to prevent a crime, rather than going after the criminals after some type of crime. now have to get in front of the criminal activity. i think they made progress. i would not recommend changing the structure. host: we will get a perspective from south dakota. guest: there were hearings a couple months ago on the underwear bomber. the spokesman for the pentagon, patrick kennedy, admitted that the underwear bombing was an intelligence operation. the more you look into all these different terrorist activities,
we see some intelligence involved. do you want to keep us in a continuous state of fear? that's what i think seems to be happening here. guest: i'm not sure what you mean by intelligence operation. i have tried in my work, and i've written a book about terrorism, and i've been a long advocate of not overreacting. terrorism is an act of the weak. it is an act of people who attack people of innocence in order to attack our psyche. we should never allow them to do that. we never overreact to the attack. it's a tragedy when people die from a terrorist attack. we should never allow them to turn our eyes upside-down when they do not merit that. host: tweet for you.
guest: this is an issue -- if you had 10 true terrorism experts, if you put five on one side and five on the other, i would be on the side that it matters to have osama bin laden. if we knock him out tomorrow, would al-qaeda fall apart? no. would it matter if we took he and his deputies out of the question? i think it would be a major important step. host: james, independent line, you were on with michael sheehan. caller: as formally with the anti-terrorism division of the new york police department, i
wonder, in terms of the tremendous amount of money and legacy cost that i see wasted toward the industry of protecting us from domestic terrorism, i see the police checking trucks on the roads. all the truckers who i know say the police have absolutely no idea what they're looking for. it is all a straight. when i see police cars sitting on the bridges of new york, the police are usually sitting there reading the books for the next police exams, or reading the newspaper. is this all a charade? how much of the percentage of anti-terrorism money is being spent on such strcharades? guest: i've never been a huge fan of action such as spot checks and stopping of vehicles
as a major way to prevent terrorism. the nypd does a lot of stops all the time for a variety of reasons. sometimes it is safety. sometimes it is smuggling of illegal goods into the state. it is certainly not a panacea. we do need to have certain spot checks, certain patrols out there, but understand that those things are not what is going to protect us. what does protect us is those investigators who are trying to penetrate the organizations before they load up a truck bomb. certainly, having a truck stop every once in awhile at a main artery is not a good way to stop it. the amount of money spent on the detectives were investigating this is minor in comparison to the tens of billions of dollars that have been spent, wastefully spent in my view, since 9/11 by the federal government. host: john in quincy, illinois.
caller: there's a woman by the name of jane graham. she witnessed five people at the oklahoma explosion. there were two military men -- she called yellow sticks of butter. host: what is the point? caller: why isn't anything done about this. you can see a youtube picture. host: you're suggesting that the u.s. military blew up oklahoma city? caller: no, i'm not saying anything. there's a lot of odd things. six of the 10 commissioners say is a cover up. host: conspiracy theories? guest: they are found in everything. i often talk to people who complain that overseas, many in the erarab world many people
think the cia blew up the towers at 9/11. conspiracy theories are a natural thing to try to explain the unexplainable. how did these horrible things happen? most of the congressional investigations on oklahoma city and on 9/11 have been done very professionally. if i thought there is anything wrong, i would be screaming about it. i'm not trying to protect anybody except the american people. i thought those investigations were very thorough. host: this is from "the daily news." what is washington thinking?
there's a new formula out there. guest: i think our entire federal government needs to be cut. i'm not an expert -- i am a terrorism expert. i spent 30 years in the u.s. government and i've seen a tremendous amount of waste in all of government. i have seen it at all levels. i think we spend entirely too much money. it's very difficult to shrink a bureaucracy. i think the obama administration is cutting people. that is great. i hope they would set priorities. certain cities -- yes, i am from new york. i believe that a couple of the big cities are the terrorist targets. they should get an amount of priority spending. unfortunately, that is not how the congress works. it is spread around to everybody in terms of congressional power. host: the front page of "the new
york times" this morning. using a drone to kill a suspected terrorist overseas in another country? guest: this is troubling. when i was trying to chase down bin laden prior to 9/11, we did not have the armed predators. if we have the armed predators in 1999-2000, we might have been able to knock out bin laden. i worry about the overuse of the drone. i think it should be selectively used against. terrorist targets, not as actively used in counterinsurgency. we really need to minimize the collateral damage in reserve this weapon. if we overuse it, we will wind up losing it.
host: next call for michael sheehan, greg on the independent line. caller: i'm more concerned by the people you have on the air. he says he studied 9/11 and the oklahoma city bombing investigation and he thought they were done so well. there were people who were on the committees who admitted they were thwarted and they did not have the funding. does he have a comment on that? host: i have spoken to all the 9/11 commission members and i think there were satisfied with the report. of course, they had complaints about certain areas. perhaps not having enough time or not funding. the general principle findings of the report, i do not think any of the members had a major problem with. i know virtually all of them. i was interviewed by them extensively.
think they generally got a story right. it generally, what today outlined happened on 9/11 is what happened. same thing with timothy mcveigh. host: elizabeth in kentucky, you are on with michael sheehan. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. i just recently went through the floods here in kentucky. i found out that small, pertinent pieces of information that should have been passed on to the public, should have been in the plan. i would think a big component would be information to the public. it was not included. if we are not prepared for
floods, and after all the money that has been poured into these programs, how are we supposed to be prepared for the next terrorism attack? guest: she is right. information is one of the key elements. it's the job of our government to provide timely intermission to citizens in their before an event -- information to the citizens before the event, and then after the event to make sure the information moves quickly. the fact of the matter is, mother nature is very powerful. there will be floods and snowstorms and power adagoutage. we continue to build our cities and their houses closes' and closer to water. the problem is that the water does not always cooperate. we have these floods that are very devastating. host: michael sheehan, you
worked in counter-terrorism in the 1990's. you still consult on it today. is the coordination 100% better between the federal government and state? is it totally different than 10 years ago? >> guest: it is much better, but it has a way to go. i'm still very involved with the advisory groups and close to the folks who do this today. the coronation is better, but not seamless. -- the coordination is better, but not sunlesseamless. they really do have a different agenda in terms of what they've been asked to do by the united states government. sometimes those are cross purposes. there's a ways to go. host: do you think there should be a dedicated part of the spectrum used for public safety?
guest: area some spectrum used on it. the nypd and the fire department have enough air waves, i believe, to conduct their business. i do not think the u.s. government should encroach further on that. i think that can be worked out. everybody is competing for the airwave space. i think they have enough. . host: michael on the republican line, you are on with michael sheehan. please go ahead with your question. caller: i will take you back a couple years. the man who was convicted for 9/11 involvement. he was convicted on his guilty plea. when he pled guilty, the next phase of the trial was what his sentence was going to be. he spent the whole time putting america down in a violent terms.
he was buried the death penalty by one vote, as i understand that. -- he was scared the death penalty -- spared the death penalty. when it was first discussed and coming into the country, there is an attempt to look at his laptop. host: michael, where do you want to go with this? what would you like michael sheehan to comment on? caller: was that whole scenario out of the ordinary to you? did it smell? host: it was interesting. when he was originally arrested, we thought he might have been the so-called 20th hijacker. in my view, and in the investigation, it turns out that he was not. he had too many issues. al-qaeda did not really trust him to be the 20th hijacker.
he was definitely involved in this organization. that trial went in a little bit different direction. eventually they got to the truth. he confessed. he did not get the death penalty. it was determined that he was not part of the 9/11 plot. i think he got a life sentence, which is probably appropriate. host: do you know where he is now? guest: i pretty much know where he is, but i do not want to comment on it. he is in a federal facility. host: it isame lewis, democrat, you are on with michael sheehan. caller: since you are a terrorist expert, why don't you comment on all the national thermite that was found at the world trade center in the dust? when you deal with the apartheid state of israel?
guest: i'm not familiar with the dust of the world trade center. i know there were a lot of questions and conspiracies. it created a perfect storm of heat and fire and it collapsed. host: are you concerned at the level of suspicion of 9/11? guest: no, it is typical. americans and people abroad almost always put conspiracy theory on something. the murder of president kennedy. many people think the warren commission was absolutely wrong. it has been looked at over and over again. do i have questions about pososwald? of course. at the end of the day, i believe it is what it is. many americans cannot accept that. is seems to be a natural phenomenon, both in the u.s. and certainly brought.
-- abroad. even worse of brougabroad. host: john on the independent line for michael sheehan. caller: i would like to name a couple people to you can tell me if you are familiar with these people and then have a follow up. host: john, this to our people, ask your question, and then we will get a response -- list your people, as for question, and then we will get a response. caller: there are 200 more people at patriotsquestion911. are you familiar with that site? host: thank you very much, john. guest: again, if i thought there
was something unusual about 9/11, i would be sitting here talking about it. i have no agenda to protect anybody. if i saw something that made me uncomfortable that i thought would make our nation less safe, i would talk about 8. host: in "the washington post" charles talks about the miranda rights for people like faisal shazhad. guest: in a terrorism case, you are worrying about an organization that is out to kill us in large numbers. when you arrest somebody involved in a terrorism plot, the most important thing is public safety. we need to find out information about what this guy knows to
prevent the next attack. even if it hurts us convicting him, i'd be more concerned about putting in place the proper interviews, interrogation, to protect public safety. secondarily, worry about the process for conviction. host: next call for michael sheehan. arlington, mass., mark. caller: thank you for taking my call. this is not a conspiracy. this is fact. this is in the 9/11 commission. i'm a little concerned on c-span when people did ask about 9/11, that people are concerned about this and it is quickly cut off as a conspiracy. two questions for the gentleman. three buildings were destroyed that day, not just the twin towers.
obviously, building 7 went down at about 6:00 p.m. host: what is your question? caller: the owner of the building said the 9/11 commission was not sure. also, a place called urban moving systems, which were agents form israel, had filled the event in advance, and then were later arrested. host: that's all fact? caller: yes, you can look it up in the 9/11 commission tear you can look up on fox news. this gentleman knows. host: i'm not aware of the filming -- guest: i'm not aware of the filming, but i am aware of many conspiracies. as well as conspiracies that the u.s. government was involved. by the way, there were more than three buildings that went down.
the world trade center -- building seven had a huge fuel storage area built into it. when the two towers went down, it ignited a fire across the street in building seven. i know larry silverstein very well. he knows what happened in seven. by the way, it was rebuilt quickly and is up and functioning now. host: last call for michael sheehan, benjamin, republican. caller: thank you for your service. i would like to ask you a question about the joint terrorism task force. are they really sharing information with each other? if they are, is anything they
can possibly do to possibly improve better communications between one another? thank you. guest: thank you for that question. it's a very important question. the joint terrorism task force are run by the fbi. they are brown the whole country. nypd -- they are around the whole country. that is the center of information sharing for the federal government within the domestic side of the u.s.. i think the fbi does a pretty good job sharing information. the problem is those state and local law-enforcement agencies, when they feel the fbi is not sharing information with them because they do not have security clearances. there's a degree of tension and frustration. my answer to them is -- make sure you have good representation within the system and you will get access to the information.
then you can use it appropriately to protect the communities. not perfectly, but i believe the fbi -- i've been a strong critic of them when i think they do things wrong. i think they've done a good job of bringing in the state and local governments and sharing appropriate information. host: sheehan, thank you for being here. coming up next, senator jeff bingaman. we will be talking about the oil spill, climate change, and other energy issues.
>> part of our live coverage today on the c-span network's includes former alaskan gov. palin speaking to the susan b. anthony list. our live coverage begins at 9:30 a.m. eastern on c-span3. at 1:00 p.m., the president of the u.s. chamber of commerce, tom donahue, speaks at the national press club. >> every weekend, book tv features 48 hours of nonfiction books. this weekend, "the reluctant spy." of the former cia officer talks about the agency before and after 9/11. finding the entire weekend schedule at booktv.org.
>> sunday, david cameron and nick clegg at their first news conference since forming the coalition government. sunday night at 9:00 p.m. on c- span. >> sending the united states against cyber attacks. saturday, homeland security deputy undersecretary philip reitinger. host: now joining us is the chairman of the senate energy committee, senator jeff bingaman, a democrat of new mexico. he is here to talk about the oil spill, climate change, and other energy issues.
senator, if we can start oil spill. as chairman of the energy committee, is bp doing enough? what is their liability as opposed to the federal government's liability? should the federal government be doing more? guest: bp is doing everything that they can think of. as far as i know, they are doing everything that others have thought of that they could be doing to cap it. i have difficulty saying that they are failing to take action that others are urging them to take. i do not think that is the case. as far as liabilities go, the president has made clear that bp will pay the bill for this. they were responsible, and this was their operation. they have indicated their intention to pay all legitimate
claims. of course, there's a lot of discussions on what that will result in. i think the liability issues will be sorted out by the courts. bp's stated position is that they want to go ahead and be responsible and make good on whatever damages people have suffered as a result of this. host: do you believe that the federal government has in place the right safety mechanisms? guest: there are technological issues that we need to get to the bottom of as to whether or not this blowout preventer worked as it should have, for example, and other technological issues. there are human error allegations that we also need to get to the bottom of. one is the drilling operation and the closing of the oil well
in the way it should have been done. and then there are regulatory failures. i do not doubt there are failures in the regulatory system. inadequate requirements on the company'ies that were engaged in it. i think the question is, how do we sort out what those procedures need to be? how do we ensure that there followed? can we sufficiently eliminate risk and be confident that drilling can occur at this kind of depth. host: what did you hear from the hearing this week? guest: the hearing fleshed out a lot of the questions. it was a lot of the questions. it brought bp, halliburton, an the other companies involved, and we began to flesh out the
questions that need to be answered. we do not have any definitive answers yet. the administration is doing two studies. there will be a report on the 28 of this month, i believe, by secretary salazar. there's a long-term study done by several agencies working with the department of interior. congress is supplementing that. congress is trying to understand what happened. that's the proper function for congress. it is an oversight responsibility. then we will have to decide what legislation we propose, and what changes in regulation we require. host: senator jeff bingaman, you have introduced a climate change bill that has already passed out of the energy committee. there was another one released this week, the so-called kerry- lieberman bill.
how is it different? guest: the bill i have reported out of the energy committee is not a climate change bill. it is an energy bill. the committee's jurisdiction does not extend to putting limits on greenhouse gas emissions. that is something that would be done through the environment committee. our bill did not try to do that. it did not put in place a cap and trade system, or any type of limit or requirement for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. senator kerry has put forward a bill that tries to do most of the kinds of things we did in our bill, but also tries to put in place a cap and trade system, or a limit on greenhouse gas emissions and a requirement that those emissions be reduced in future.
host: do you support it? guest: i am still reading it. i think there are 1000 pages or close to it. i compliment senator kerrey and senator lieberman for the hard work they have put into it. there's no question that they've spent a great deal of time developing the legislation. i have not passed any final judgment. host: senator jeff bingaman is our guest. the numbers are on the screen if you would like to talk about the oil spill, climate change, or other energy issues that we're facing in the u.s.. the first caller for senator bingaman comes from hawaii. please go ahead with your question for senator bingaman. caller: i worked in the energy industry in renewals already, and i have been for many years.
my first part is about the possibility of assisting the renewable industry by some type of voucher model that might assist local, investor owned facilities to pursue the concept, including the obligation of buying all renewable energy that is produced once they do the tariff. unfortunately, in hawaii, the local utility will not obligate themselves to buy it. it will really be renewable rfp. that's something we can talk about in the future. more importantly now is the oil spill. the emergency tools that should be in place -- a friend of mine
is a navy scientists who felt stop the oil spill in santa barbara. and the oil companies, even though they promised to be ready, they never created a mechanism of testing technology before problems occurred. they are only reactive, not proactive. host: let's get a response from the senator. please go ahead. guest: let me respond, first, on the renewable energy, and the idea of the tariff. i strongly favored some type of net metering requirement. we have that in a few states. we should have it nationwide.
this would basically say that the utility would have to buy the power that is produced and buy it at a cost, presumably, to what they sell power for. in most states, the net metering is a requirement that just applies up to the extent that a consumer is using energy. you can get down to 80 utility bill if you are producing as much energy as you are using. you cannot get in the business of producing energy beyond that. i think that would be a major step forward for us in the country. that is not the tariff. in germany and other countries in europe, they basically do buy anything that is produced, and it's a great encouragement to renewable energy. it also puts a significant
additional cost on other ratepayers. that is the response on the first point. on the issue of emergency tools, i think he made some good points. it is clear that the companies involved here have not made adequate preparation for anything like this kind of a spill. again, the regulations and requirements imposed on them were not adequate to ensure those preparations had been made. host: there was a bill in the senate yesterday, and this is from "the huffington post." a bill to increase the liability cap was defeated thursday by senator murkowski.
are you familiar with this legislation? guest: i am familiar with it. a 75 million-dollar cap on liability, which is the current law, is not adequate. the real question is, what should it be? or should there be any cap on liability for companies that are drilling? bp has taken the position that they will not subject themselves to any cap in the case of this accident. they have said they will be good for whatever it cost to remedy the situation. that seems like a better standard than having some kind of artificial cap that the congress would arrive at. host: the next call for senator bingaman comes from reagan county, ga., robert. caller: good morning, senator bingaman.
i read an article last night on "the new york times." they said there were 18 different disbursements, and 12 of them were much more effective. some of them were 10 to 20 times less toxic to the wildlife and the ocean. i do not understand how the epa allowed bp to select which poisons to put in the ocean. it also reports that they -- where they're getting it is another company that was owned by bp or halliburton. guest: again, we have not done
the necessary preliminary work to determine the toxicity. we're depending on what the companies are telling the government about the fact that these disbursements are not a warharmful. epa needs to be ready in the future. for purposes of the future, we need to have a good peer reviewed research. host: are you supportive of the moratorium on further offshore oil drilling? guest: yes, i think secretary salazar has acted appropriately.
we will have a hearing next tuesday. he is coming before the committee to talk about what he has done and what plans he has to take action in the future. i'm sure you'll get questions about that. host: i want to get your comments on the lead story in "the new york times" this morning. guest: yes, i saw the article. it's a disturbing set of allegations. we certainly need to get to the bottom of it. if permits are required to be
issued by noaa and those permits were not issued before the minerals management service went ahead and permitted the this drilling, then that's a serious concern. host: amarillo, texas, republican line, you are on with senator bingaman. caller: senator bingaman, my question is on energy. i know president bush gave the auto industry $200 million for year on r&d. the auto industry is very slow
at putting these vehicles out to where we can purchase them. guest: the caller is exactly right. there's been a substantial delay in getting election vehicles on the market. the auto industry, including u.s. automakers, are finally focused on getting this done quickly. i believe that as early as the end of this year, we will begin to see electric vehicles coming on the market that people can buy. i do think that one of the great hopes is that in the future, we will be able to reduce our dependence on oil in the transportation sector. and in particular imported oil. i think electric vehicles are in
maine way that we hope to do that. host: are there provisions in your energy bill that was passed out of committee that promotes electric vehicles and other alternative power sources? >guest: in the last two major energy bills we have passed, we have brought them to the floor, and then we added a package of provisions to incentivize people to use hybrid vehicles, to use electric vehicles. we would expect to do that again with what ever energy bill comes to the floor this time. if we are able to get consensus, it will have additional incentives. we also put in a lot as part of the recovery act that was passed this year, some incentives for production of advanced energy
products in the united states. the idea being that if we get people hooked on or interested in buying electric vehicles, we do not want to put them in a circumstance where the have to go overseas to get those or to get the batteries for those. we want to have the production here. host: next call for senator bingaman. orlando, joe, democrats line. please go ahead. caller: good morning. i would like to draw a parallel between this fiasco in the gulf and the banking crisis. i think the question that we have to consider -- what was the government's supposed to be doing in terms of overseeing both situations? how much regulation was there. were there any laws broken? the previous administration, my
personal opinion is that they were big advocates of law is a fair -- leave us alone. the consequences of that philosophy are evident in the banking crisis, and also in this situation. guest: he is making a good point in that there have been regulatory failures in connection with the banking crisis. we have a bill on the senate floor right now to try to change those regulations and reform wall street. we hope that the reforms contained in bill legislation -- in the legislation we are considering will prevent a future meltdown of the financial system such as we experienced a couple years ago.
in the case of this oil spill, you can say that there were almost certainly some failures to adequately regulate, and failures by the government to require the kinds of precautionary measures that we now wish we had required. host: do you foresee your energy legislation coming to the floor for debate? guest: i do believe senator reid will have to decide what package she brings to the floor. i think he intends to make that decision sometime when we return from this memorial day recess. i think he does want to bring an energy bill to the floor. i have advocated for bringing the bill that we reported out of our committee to the floor and see what else we can add to it.
that seems to be a logical way to proceed. host: if people want to read your bill? guest: they can go to energy. senate.gov. we think there are some good provisions. i think it does address capping greenhouse gas emissions, and that is an important thing to do. that's not something we attempted to do in our committee. host: next call for senator bingaman, long island, albert, independent line. good morning. caller: good morning, senator. guest: senator. caller: i'm sure your commission is doing very good work and you are leading it professionally and well. under crisis management, that says before we startefind out wo started the fire, and what we
can do to prevent fires and the future, let's put out the fire. senator, what will you do today, personally, to stop the oil spill today? if the honest answer to that question is nothing, what would you hope someone else would do? guest: the honest answer is that i do not know that i can change what is happening in the gulf by picking up the phone or write in a better. i do believe the company with the most responsibility, bp, is working 24 hours a day to stop the flow of oil and gas. i believe the department of interior, and the coast guard, and all of the other agencies focused on this are assisting in
every way they can. it would be presumptuous of me to suggest that i will fix this problem as a member of congress. all of the experts and all of the agencies on the scene are unable to. host: besides asking the questions this week at your hearing, were their answers? did you encourage the ceo's of these companies to go in any certain direction? guest: we encouraged that they do with the actually say they are going to do about making good for all the damages that are occurring. we also tried to probe what could have caused the accident and what steps they have taken to ensure that these problems not cause a similar accident in the future.
we have had several briefings in congress. by officials from the administration on all the steps they're taking. i think there's a serious effort going forward to do that. host: john, republican, your honor with senator jeff bingaman. caller: good morning. president obama says he has been on this since day one. i saw the head of the epa and she did not mention the oil spill until the sixth day. she was too busy going to these earth day festivals. a good leader has a plan b. what is the government doing? something should be done by now. guest: i think that the coast guard, is in charge of
this coordination for the federal government. they've been working with the secretary of energy. i know what some of our national laboratories, to be sure that any good idea that exist out there for how to stop this oil spill from continuing is seized upon. i know they're doing that. i know they're working hand in glove with bp and their operations. host: this is the first time this situation has ever occurred, the way it has developed, and the way the oil is continuing to come out? guest: there have been other oil spills like this. i do not know if they have been of this size. there was a very large oil spill off the coast of mexico's several decades ago.
it took several months before that was stopped. i hope it does not take several months to stop this. host: concord, new hampshire, nancy, democrat. caller: thank you for taking my call. i read some information about the oil rig and how it is produced. in norway and brazil, they require some type of gadget on the oil wells. i think it is a pre warning system. is there some way for you to look into the energy policy that was put into place behind closed doors by vice president dick cheney and the courts did not allow us -- we did not know who they met with and all that stuff. when they say what comes out of the ground goes up for sale -- on the sale -- what do they mean? thank you.
guest: lemme try to respond on the last question first. when oil is produced, it is refined or sold on the world market. that is probably what was meant by people who are suggesting what ever comes out of the ground wind up being sold on the world market for commodities. that's just the way that occurs. as far as the secret meetings that are alleged to have occurred with former vice president cheney, i think those were in connection with trying to develop an overall energy approach. the administration then sent us something that was more of a brochure that said this is the kind of thing that the bush administration thinks should be
pursued in an energy policy. i think most of what was in that is pretty well known. it was heavily focused on more production. there was very little attention to increase conferenconservatior increase renewable energy. the current administration and president obama have a very different set of priorities. he has continued to support production because of the needs, but he has also tried to put a much greater emphasis on shifting away from fossil fuels and also focusing on conservation. host: tell us about new mexico as an energy producing state. guest: it is very much in energy producing state. we produce a great deal of natural gas.
guest: it is a major power source that does not produce greenhouse gas emissions. we can produce nuclear power safely. i think we need to continue to pursue that. we'll put in place in congress various incentives for firms to go ahead and construct additional nuclear power plants and that is beginning. applications are pending to try to build some new plants and i think that would be a good thing. host: what is the status of yucca mountain? guest: the administration does not want to pursue this as a depository for nuclear waste. the department has withdrawn its
application, which they had filed with the nuclear regulatory commission to get a license to use that facility. they have withdrawn that application. secretary of energy has appointed a blue-ribbon commission to look at what alternative we have for the permanent disposal of nuclear wastes in light of the decision or in response to the decision not to use yucca mountain. host: do you support that? guest: that has been my view. if that is not going to happen, then i certainly support setting up a blue ribbon commission to tell us what the alternative should be. we will get a report late this year or maybe early next year from that commission and hope
they come up with some good suggestions. host: west chester, pennsylvania. thank you for holding. are you with us? please go ahead. caller: i apologize. this is chicago. i was calling -- i first had a comment. i thank you for the work you're doing, senator. your name is peter, right? c-span, which i do enjoy, and it is educational, but if you think is in existence for the consumers that pay the cable bill, then we need to have questions answered.
you are cutting people off and that is the advice of other outlets that turn people away. constructive criticism. senator bingman, as i have been watching hearings, one of the callers did asked and it is not a shot to you, sir, but shouldn't congress be more proactive as a lot of people be saying instead of reactive? it has to be disasters such as the oil spill and this, that, and the other. the american people continue to be out of. guest: i think the caller makes a good point. one of the big challenges for congress is to be proactive and to try to anticipate problems
and get out ahead of them. this is a circumstance where we did not get out ahead of it. the case of the financial meltdown, we did not get ahead of that, either. some cases it is congress that is failing to get out ahead of the problem and sometimes it is the administration, and sometimes it is industry. there is a shared issue whether it is a financial disaster or an oil disaster. the continuing challenge is, how do you see a problem that might occur and keep it from happening.e backs host: caller: i have been watching this energy deal for 50-plus
years. i use a lot of energy. it goes back when gasoline was less than 30 cents a gallon when i started out. anytime you increased the cost of energy, you will increase the cost of everything. people are not going to be able to pay their electric bill or afford to have cable and watch c-span. everything you produce is energy. everything takes energy. we need to keep energy as cheap as we can or we're going back to the jungle. energy is what drives this planet, it gives us a modern scientific advances. host: charles, we got the point, thank you. guest: i think in addition to
wanting to keep energy cheaper, we need to recognize that there are real costs that the society is paying. if we have side effects from energy use that are not in fact factored in. that is what the whole global climate change issue is about. if it does not cost you anything to put as much greenhouse emissions into the atmosphere, then you'll just keep doing it. thought of putting a price on carbon or putting a charge on is people want to pollute is a way of saying, let's get the cost of the energy we're using reflect what is actually going to cost society. that is the idea behind it.
i assume that is what the caller was getting too. if we went ahead and did something, it probably would result in some increase in energy prices where the energy is produced from a particular sources. that way you could discourage people from -- they could produce it from different sources. host: are you in favor of a so- called carbon tax? guest: i do not think -- i have not seen a proposal for a carbon tax that i thought could get the support it needed through the congress. that is one way to try to put a price on carbon and to discourage greenhouse gas emissions to the extent possible.
i think we should look at its along with the various cap and trade proposals that have been put forward and choose the one that does the best job of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and keeping energy as cheap as possible. host: next call comes from louisiana on our democrats line. caller: good morning. i am on top of this and i'm wondering, is there a point where the replacement of the drilling mud, the dead battery, and not pulling the final cement plug, does this change to make regular -- does this become criminal? something else that burns me. someone was charged -- some corp. was charged with a
corporate felony. i committed a felony and went to jail. could you explain this? host: where is your town? caller: almost the end of the world. we work with the oil industry. the problems we have in the past are boats going 60 miles per hour. we work together with them. it is not like they just came down here yesterday. we have gone along over years and years. deregulation is the main problem. guest: i think the caller is asking some good legal questions about what are -- what are the civil and criminal liability
that might flow from a certain set of facts. i think in general use start by saying was the company negligent? then the question becomes, it was their gross negligence and was there any misconduct? if you get into anything that is haveul misconduct, you potential criminal liability. if you have negligence or just gross negligence, i do not know if there is a criminal penalty that attaches to individuals or to the corporation itself. i do not know the answer to whether some type of felony conviction of a corporation would result in a fine or what the solution -- in most cases, i think the assumption is that
finding a company -- fining the company is all you can do to the company itself. you cannot throw a corporation in jail. it doesn't mean that individual officers and employees of the company could not be pursued. host: last call comes from sunrise, florida. caller: good morning. i would like to say something about the drilling. we have an oil spill down in the gulf. one of the drilling offshore where it is hard to control these spills? the government -- we have land permits, water permits from the state. why cannot the government takeover this and that way the
billions of dollars of profits could go to pay off our debts? guest: as to why shell would want to drill offshore, i assume that is where the determine that is where the gas is. that is why they have made a determination to drill in that area. the government of taking over the oil industry, we have that in quite a few countries. we have never had that in the united states. we have always felt private companies should do that and the government should regulate them and get a royalty from the drilling that occurs on public lands and get taxes from the companies on the basis of their production. you can argue either way. realistically, i have not seen any serious proposals in the
congress about the federal government becoming an oil company or establishing an oil companies. i do not think that is in the realm of ideas being considered. host: senator jeff bingman, thank you for being on "washington journal" this morning. we'll turn our attention to surveillance cameras and how they are used to prevent or solve crimes. ron marks will be out here. ♪
>> part of our live coverage today includes sarah palin speaking to the susan b. anthony list, a group that supports women candidates for political office. live coverage begins at 9:30 a.m. eastern on c-span3. tom donahue will speak at the national press club. look back at the exxon valdez hearings of 1989. look back at the new c-span video library. it is washington your way.
search it, watch it, and share it. all programs available free online. elena kagan is meeting with senators in advance of her confirmation hearing. per more about the process in the latest book, "the supreme court." it provides unique insight about the court. available in hardcover and as an e-book. book tv, john kiriakou is "the reluctant spy." he is interviewed and you can find the entire schedule at booktv.org.
host: on your stream right now is ron marks. a former member of the central intelligence agency including a services officer. he is joining us to talk about the use of surveillance cameras. mr. marks, how useful are the cameras that are around in cities? guest: that is a good question. you saw michael bloomberg was in london to look at the so-called ring of steel there. the british love cctv cameras. i hate to be skeptical about it because you always want some kind of layered defense. they tend to be more forensic. do the follow-up and you
anticipate. you might use that and think this car has been here for a while and maybe we should take a look at it. cameras fall the guy of a london bombing so they know who had done it or where it was done. it hardly stopped them. i know there is a certain amount of prevention. we have seven elevens in the city that have tv cameras and it never stops those who want to rob them. there are more frantic than in terms of stopping them. you go back and say, we follow this guy from here to here. that is what the london system really does. you can be photographed up to 200 times walking through london. host: how does the u.s. compared
to that? guest: not even close. the numbers are squishy in terms of cameras. it may be a couple of million. host: could you define those cctv? guest: closed circuit television cameras. sevenuld include atm's, elevens. in the british case, it could be at a shopping center or in the downtown as the cameras are here. there are several in downtown washington. they are useful. you have tons of tape or electronic -- i am showing my age. all these things are collected and they tend to arise after an amount of time. when you do that kind of follow- up, there is among liberties
activists about how long you hang on to this stuff. who gets to see it? you think if they are going to be spying, etc. i tend to disagree with that. frankly, given the volume of information, they could not if they wanted to. but it does present a problem. how long do you hang onto it? if you are using the cameras in a combination with other things, then you are fine. i have some biases. motivation is what you're picking up with human intelligence. the guys who blew up the buses and subways in london had been
written off or considered clean by the british police. part of it was and they redoubled the effort to try to find more human intelligence that would point to that. closed-circuit television is a motivation -- it does not really say whether this guy is serious about going there. host: if you have all these cameras, the somebody watch all these cameras? guest: that is another problem. how many people are you going to have a signed staring at a television screen? we have visions of a mall cop and we have walked in a building and there is a television screen. to have someone watching all these television screens all the time -- i know technology is available where you have certain kinds of biometrics and you
cannot monitor the process. let's face it. there is an enormous volume of information. you may look key buildings or street corners. in london, they have tried to do general sweeps through the area. the ring of steel is what those in london are talking the 3000 to 4000 cameras in the downtown area. this is what michael bloomberg is trying to imitate in new york. you want to have an ability to scan through the area. how long has that car been sitting there? is there someone standing there with a backpack? it is labor intensive. the intelligence community -- i have enjoyed over the years
companies that was so you systems based on the volume of information they have collected. i think you run into that with the closed-circuit cameras. there is only so much information you can have. you have a room full of people and a wall full of screens. you need a combination of good police work and use these for forensic work. host: how helpful was the camera in times square to catch faisal shahzad? guest: it was people on the ground in the final analysis who were able to call a couple of police over and who were there on the scene. i think one of the final bottom lines of homeland security is that this is a form of the old
fashion civil defense. it is up to people who were there and say, that looks silly court that looks suspicious. we should call someone over. frantically it was nice. we knew where he went to. this car has been here for awhile. in terms of going backward, it was beautiful. it is a tribute to the new york police for getting this thing done in about 50 hours. when it is all said and done, it was up to those individuals who were there and were able to report to the police. host: ron marks is our guest. at one point, he served as the intelligence council for robert dole and trent lott.
he spent 16 years at the cia. you're a clandestine services officer. guest: we do not all look like jennifer garner or matt damon, sadly. people think we are spies. we're trained to gather intelligence and trained to find people who can give you that intelligence. it is not always as glamorous as it is sometimes depicted in the movies. james bond never had to file an expense report. it is a way to identify people who can provide you that kind of information. host: did you serve overseas?
this is a big country. figure out what you want to protect and how much you want to spend on it. i will get soft in terms of my politics. i'm worried about how much information we are gathering. i am worried authorities bark now collecting intelligence. we do not have a great history of that in the united states in terms of when we did it. we have a more willing press. you're not going to have nine of hidden background thing that you had with richard nixon or j. edgar hoover. so i am hopeful in that regard. i would rather have some form of debate about the question and some form of organization on the
intelligence. there are over 17,000 different state and local police authorities in the united states. the intelligence gathered is divided among them in terms of local efforts, the central intelligence agency is providing information along with fbi. they tried to provide intelligence and they provide it up the line. the fbi and homeland security are involved. there are a lot of cooks in pot.s o everyone's been awhile you'll hear somebody and they are less of an expert and say we should have a service like the british
do. my response is, here is the first problem. this constitution we have built was built for one purpose. we have three branches of government. they're all countervailing. there is a lot state governments. there is some justification with central power and also about size. british are about 60 million toll. mi5 can work with the police forces and the british are much more accepting of a greater intrusiveness of their lives as events by so many cameras around the country. they have more of a willingness and an experience. we do not have that level of experience in terms of dealing with terrorist activities yet and i hope we do not.
host: ron marks is our guest and we're talking specifically about surveillance cameras and other domestic issues he can address. caller: thank you. i appreciate listening to this. my question or feelings basically is with the department of homeland security, i am questioning the overkill on this political correctness and i'm feeling that janet napolitano, i think that we're showing a week is in trying to be overly concerned about this political correctness. if it walks like a duck and talks like a doctor -- host: are you talking about
profiling? caller: yes. host: is that a helpful tool? guest: it is a good question. major civil rights, a series of movements throughout the 1950's and 1960's, and we're in a position -- is a fairly equal society so people tend to not want to judge each other on that. this is a different kind of war . it is concentrated among certain portions of the population. you have to make a judgment as far as how far you want to push on that. i am split on it to be honest with you. to some extent, the profiling -- i understand where they are coming from. we have a given community and a
small, small portion of the islamic community is biting into a very different radicalized form of islam which is way off the beaten path. the question is whether or not in an effort to protect ourselves, we wish to throw away some of our own restrictions and go after them in terms of profile and i would not care -- i understand that we probably will walk the middle line and it probably will be unsatisfactory. host: when a city has surveillance cameras up, or that protect people? or is it the wild west? guest: it is interesting to see. for researching this book, i went back and i thought, there must be some laws or some rules
of the road. with cameras, if you're walking down the road, you're walking down the road and you have essentially put yourself out. it is tough. i am not an attorney. my initial take is that if we're walking from here down to the wilson building downtown, the cameras will be falling us and there's nothing we can do about it. host: dallas texas, robert. caller: i have a question about surveillance and decision making. i read the 9/11 report extensively. airports have the most extensive use of cameras probably anywhere in the country. the last plane, the last
aircraft that crashed in pennsylvania was laidte. so the first aircraft had ordered crashed into the building before the aircraft took off. all the surveillance in the world did not avert the biggest disaster. indecision to ground stop all the aircraft because in the report, it talked about all the agencies could not make a decision. i would like to comment as to -- doesn't decision making have the most important impact on surveillance as opposed to any type of surveillance? guest: first of all, i think that every american is interested and should read the 9/11 report. the narrative is shocking. i also know that since that time, a lot of measures have
been put in place. we would have caught 18 out of 19 of these guys if we of the current system in place. it is always a touchy decision at an airport. you do have some forms of profiling, you do have some form of biometrics. the detroit bomber was someone who came in through a system that was weak and there's only so much persuasion you can use. homeland security has been tough in trying to get it done at some of these entry points and so they're doing what they need to do. it is different now. i would never see this country again in quite the same way. the people who are doing this, they're not the most clever people, they are clever enough
to know what we're doing. they have been anticipating and trying to switch their tactics. there are very few direct groups involved. there is a trail running back to people who supported this person. in terms of airport security, i felt security in the united states. host: we're collecting fingerprints and photographs of people coming into the u.s. guest: we have a lot databases. we have an enormous amount of data bases. you are looking at a guy who used to be in the i.t. business. once you get millions and millions of bits of information, it becomes hard to sort through quickly. it does get stored away in
multiple databases. the fbi has some, intelligence committee has some. the state department has some. what you saw with the underwear bomb was a problem of the national counterterrorism agency. you could put together sort of a profile of someone like this guy or this guy in particular. we need to get this down range and then to the airlines. the good news is we are in an information age and we can communicate with anyone in the world on our laptops. there is a lot of stuff and is hard to sort through.
host: austin, texas. you're on with ron marks. caller: here i am and i will talk about this. when people call them and they talk about something called a conspiracy theories, i think the biggest bunch of conspiracy theorists. and saveoing to come me, save me, mr. bush. you are the biggest sinners. i want to know who has the contract for these cameras. host: that is a good question. who owns these cameras? guest: there are a number of manufacturers in the u.s. it and you googled get thousands of listings.
the basic cameras -- you can set them up yourselves. there are any number of manufacturers out there. york is'll find in new that they will go to a given company and say we have these specifications and we will put out a bid for them and determine what the qualifications are and they will buy them and put them in. will probably see more of it. there are a lot of them. host: is google and effective tool these days? guest: without getting in too fine a point, the united states government has found google has a basic search engine is very good. it is a basic search engine in terms of looking at the most
popular thing that is there. i met with the ceo of cool at at one point. it is a basic search engine. discover it is a good chevy but it is not a mercedes. you have to do some specific designs for these kinds of things. it is a good one stop shop. host: columbus, ohio. maryann. caller: thank you for taking my call. on data mining, carl cameron did a series in 2002 on some of the company's like converse and infosight, and people cannot
blow it because i believe fox news was forced to take up the website. can you talk about foreign access to data storage and data mining? i encourage people to go look at that series. changes to fires that asa act what we do with technology now. guest: someone has been paying attention. the data mining and data storage -- data mining is just what it sounds like. trying to go through a set of data. you go mining through the data and they're all sorts of algorithms and other ways to do it.
in the data storage, there is an enormous problem and there are a number of companies who have done quite well to store this information. huge amounts every day. twitter wants to hang onto everything. host: the library of congress was contractors to take every twitter. guest: i would be curious to see in 100 years someone going back to see the thoughts that were contained in twitter. there are a lot of companies in this business. the u.s. government has a tendency to stick to using u.s. government, u.s. companies. a lot of it depends on how these databases are set up.
one interesting thing the pentagon had to go through is they are quite net centered in having material available, but they were very open. china went in and took as much information out as they could. now there is a lot less information than there was. you are always playing that game of who has access to that. we also live in a day when it is not just nation states. there was a non-nation state act. there were 14-year-old in moscow or beijing and they can do pretty much the same thing. one of the dangers of cyberspace and there is a presence in that there are no rules, or very few rules permit
access is an ability of your cleverness to get to it. but that is an interesting question. fisa was more focused on the idea of the act of 1978 as a way to guide the united states government as to how they will do wiretaps in the good old days when we had phones with wires on them. it was reworked to try to deal with systems that now are very different in terms of being cell phones, the centetc. .t doesn't really cover it there or not it should is probably a good question. host: linda from taxes on the republican line. caller: i'm just calling about
the airport security. people need to get over it. i had a mastectomy and flew to my daughter for christmas. because i was a lopsided, i got stopped and frisked both going and coming. i am a 59-year-old woman born and raised in dallas, texas. people need to get over it and understand security is for our betterment. host: we are collecting all this information. where in your view does the privacy, civil liberties issue come in? guest: i think there comes a time when there is too much.
i think the tsa is a miserable job. one of the first things that happen is you set up a tsa. you put people through an airport quickly. at the same time, you are getting into biometric data and breathing rates andng rate heat of the body and taking a quick forensic picture of you inside your clothes. how much money and time do you want to spend on this thing? the underwear bomber would have been caught if the machinery was up and running. is that worth while in the sense of our 200 lives worthwhile
versus the tens of millions of people who have to go through this each year. i think it is. maybe we will have had enough at some point. i still think it is crucial. the americans dealing with this issue. we have not had experience with this yet. in israel or the u.k. where you have been bombed and has seen hundreds of people killed, you are willing to tolerate it, as the lady was saying. even if it seems extreme. el al has some of the best security in the world. that is a value the israelis determine the want to have in their system. we are not really used to that. we were pretty wild and free here for a long time.
after 9/11, what does this now mean to us in terms of our own personal liberties being pushed back, in terms of our own policy being pushed back? there is a trade-off. there is a trade-off here. if you're willing to accept it, it is great. host: melvyn in florida. caller: i want to give some perspective from law- enforcement. the cameras are very good hopefully tracking people. once an individual leaves, you can always take those cameras and put them in an area which can be an escape route. with the cameras in washington,
cameras are there for surveillance purposes can only be used during major defense in the downtown area. they're not running 24 hours a day. the cameras are there and are real good if individual calls, but if a crime happens. if you have enough cameras, you can resume them in -- zoom them in. host: what kind of law enforcement the do? caller: i used to be in charge of demonstrations in the city. guest: that is a tough job, too. it allows you to go would and explore where these people have been. it allows you to keep an eye on
what is going on. it gives you some awareness. you want to have some additional juice behind you. d.c. has really ramped up. cathy lanier has been working with homeland security. there are so many districts around here in terms of maryland, virginia, d.c., homeland, and all the counties around here. she has done a nice job to the joint operations center to get there. cameras can get large scale circumstances. they are up full-time. there is a joint operation center. they do ramp them up at some times. it is a good system. host: how long are people
keeping these digital images? guest: we are still new enough into the system. it depends. some private systems they are wiped out within 72 hours. they are kind of on a loop. they are relatively new. you can hang onto it for a number of years. it is a storage problem. host: when is your book coming out? guest: the author always has his fingers crossed. the book was sent to the publisher on wednesday. we're looking at a september release. the publisher may be listening. host: st. louis, nick. caller: i would like to say one thing. we need to have more advocates
and less of a centralized government. this man is from the cia. we had people earlier that will represent the climate change and more security. the airport security situation is, " when you think half the cargo on those planes is not inspected by the cameras are focusing on the bodies of the passengers. our borders are not protected whatsoever. no cameras. we have no idea who is coming into the country. the report last year focused on third-party advocates, anti- abortion people. what is happening with the security? it is turning on the people. we should have cameras in washington. that is where the real crime is.
guest: i tried to emphasize -- it is easy when you lived in washington. there are 17,600 state and local authorities out there. these are the first responders. there are 800,000 police in the united states. i may be wrong with that number. we forget the importance of those people and what kind of support they need. it was two new york city policemen who were there and they were first on the scene. in any of these other places, you often see these guys -- down the border, is the state and local authorities. there has meant a program for several years where they have been trying to construct a fence on the border.
there have been a number of financial problems. new.of these systems work neere on that a real tear one. if we stuck holding this stuff up, what are we going to do? there are random checks and information that will allow it to search for nuclear devices and this kind of thing. but is a problem. host: next call is california, theelaine. caller: i cannot help but feel there are some corrupt people in high places because we do allow the drugs and guns to come into our country. there is a lot of killing on the border on our side.
it seems we would protect our people before we sent them abroad. we have drugs in their high schools. there is no protection there. we used to survey the border very closely but no one seems to be talking about the drugs now and what is coming over. immigration is a subject that has not been discussed recently because it is not popular. i agree with arizona and i would like to see other states do it, too. do you think there are people high up were getting money from drugs coming in? guest: i would always like to tell you that it would never be the case but we both know life does not work on he never evers . people are trying to do the best job they can with a fairly difficult situation.
the mexican border is about 2,000 miles long. there have always been restrictions. we have use military troops. we have used troops on the border. border patrol has been most responsible for the efforts down there. it is a tough call. drugs are a tough business. my assistant is in our gallery 20's and i am 54. -- my assistant is in her 20's. the cocaine problem was insane. several hundred people were killed. there was corruption at different levels. i do not think we've reached that by longshot, but it is a dangerous problem that needs to
be focused on. host: last call comes from north carolina. caller: can you hear me? how can you expect me to take homeland security seriously when the government refuses to close our border. don't tell me they cannot close the border. they did a pretty good job during world war ii. politicians are more concerned with baltic then securing our borders. host: is securing the border an issue? guest: there has been enormous concern from day one. janet napolitano deals with this. there's always a concern terrorist would slip across the southern border. not a lot of evidence. there was concern that would be an avenue for that.
there's more concern on homegrown terrorism. georgeron marks with the 9/ was in university homeland security policy institute. you can find his website. thank you for being on the program. to continue this conversation about domestic terrorism and about surveillance cameras and they're used in the u.s. and other countries, you can go to facebook and is a continuing conversation on this issue and you can see it there. this weekend, netbook tv kicks off and you confine the full schedule. a lot going on. these president speaking in about 10 minutes at the white
house. we will bring that to you live. he will meet with his cabinet about the bp oil's built in the gulf. enjoy your weekend and thank you for being with us. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] >> as you heard, the president is meeting today with his top advisers on the gulf coast oil spill. the gulf spill baby far larger than current estimates.
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