tv Dr. Ben Carson at the National Press Club CSPAN October 11, 2015 6:51pm-7:31pm EDT
they love to say that ben carson is insensitive. they need that narrative. that is the only way it can be acceptable because i do not fit into their general description. a black person who is a conservative? they cannot quite deal with that. who talks about self-reliance and that you are not dependent on them? how could you possibly say such heresy? it is necessary to demonize in a business like that and i understand that. i am actually willing to fight with them. i will continue to fight with them. i am fighting for something even greater. and that is, i am fighting for the people of the united states because you see we have very smart and very capable people in
our nation who would be extremely good leaders but they say -- why would i get into that cesspool and be attacked and have my family attacked and have people going through every aspect of my life and trying to demonize me. people do not want to do that. i am going to fight that fight for them. if i am successful, i expect that maybe a lot more of the people in our country who are not professional politicians will say -- you know what? he did it. and i am going to do it also. and i think we will be much better off as a country when we once again understand that this country is for everyone and not a specific political class. [applause] but as far as the whole safety net argument is concerned, my mother worked extraordinarily
hard. three jobs at a time, leaving the house before 5:00 a.m. in the morning and getting back after midnight. because she did not want to be dependent. she occasionally accepted some aid, but for the most part she was able to stay off of it and she refused to be a victim and she refused to let us be a victim. it was not that she did not recognize that there were problems out there. she chose to focus on other things. she would say to us -- if you walk into an auditorium full of bigoted, racist people, she said, you do not have a problem. they have a problem. when you walk in there, they are all going to cringe and wonder if you are going to sit next to them, whereas, you can sit
wherever you want. [laughter] that is kind of the way that i have chosen to live my life. have there been obstacles? of course. have there been racist people around? of course. what i said, that is their problem. i have some very important things that i need to do. so i can get wrapped up in their problems or i can do the important things. not everyone chooses to live their life that way and that is fine, but that is the way that i chose to live mine. it works pretty well, if i do say so myself. having said that, i am very concerned about the downtrodden people in our society. and i do believe that we have a responsibility to take care of them. but when i say we, i am talking about we the people. i am talking about the private sector. the government has been taking this on since woodrow wilson but
it kept increasing. by the time we got to lyndon johnson, and the war on poverty, that we are the savior and we will take care of you guys and we will solve all of the problems. here we are all of these years later, $19 trillion later, did we solve the problem? we have 10 times more people on food stamps. more people in poverty, on welfare, broken homes, out of wedlock births, crime, incarceration. everything that was supposed to be better is not only worse, it is much worse. so, i am not going to sit here and demonize the government for doing that, but i am saying -- isn't it time to wake up and start thinking about another way to do things? rather than driving ourselves
into debt without solving the problem. and that is a tremendous responsibility of the government as well. to remain solvent. because, you are the guardian of the people's future. how can we enjoy the liberties and have the future enjoy the liberties if they are overloaded with debt. $18.5 trillion, the national debt. think about that. to pay that back at $10 million a day, it would take you over 5000 years. that is absurd. we are putting that on the backs of our young people. and now, here we are sitting here saying -- let us increase the debt some more. let us raise the debt ceiling some more.
did it ever occur to us that there is another way? there are 4.1 million federal employees. i would offer that that is too many. there are 645 federal agencies and sub agencies. this is absurd. if you cut the budget by one penny, it will be a disaster, according to some. nancy pelosi. this is absurd. [laughter] we must think about the children. that really is the main reason that i have gotten into the fray
here. my whole professional career centered on children and the future for the children. what we had to do to improve the quality of life for them. how can we in good conscience continue this charade of responsibility knowing that what we are doing to their future is wrong. if i had time, i would get into the fiscal gap and all of the implications of that and what the implications of the debt is on the fed and how they are irresponsibly printing money and how the low interest rates are hurting the poor and the middle class. putting money into a savings account or buying bonds does not help them. the only people that can make money are people that have a risk tolerance which allows them to go into the stock market. and i would talk about the regulations and how every single regulation costs money in terms of goods and services and how
those are the things that are really impacting the middle class and the poor people. it does not matter for wealthy people if a bar of soap goes up $.10 but it matters a lot to the middle class or for poor people. you think about that regulatory burden and who that is hurting. it goes on and on. we are promoting the general welfare, those are the kinds of things we need to be thinking about. we need to be thinking about mechanisms for allowing the downtrodden in our society to escape from dependency and move up the ladder of success. we have to understand that we only have 330 million people. that sounds like a lot but china has over a billion and india has over a billion. we need to get the bang for the buck out of all of our people. we need to find out how all of our people can rise and stop all of this really class warfare stuff.
we can get immediate stimulus by thinking about the over $2 trillion that exists overseas. right now. we need to bring that money back. i can remember many an afternoon sitting around the board table at a lot or costco talking about the money overseas and what we were going to do with it and how we would love to bring it back to build another factory or do something else. but the corporate tax rates were what if we had a six month hiatus? i have been talking about this for several months. it wouldn't cost them anything to repatriated, we would only require that 10% of it being upd in enterprise sums set
in our major cities or to provide employment for people who are unemployed or on welfare. to talk about an incredible stimulus that didn't cost the taxpayers one penny? that would be the biggest stimulus since fdr's new deal. that is low hanging fruit. is what we have to do, deal with this low hanging fruit. and industryess once again thinking about how do we invest in the people around us? this is what we used to do before the government started taking over everything, because americans are very generous people. americahink about early and you had these communities all over the place, in many cases separated by hundreds of miles. time if a farmer was
up and that apple tree, everyone else pitched in. that is who we are. who is always on the frontline? let us utilize that and recognize you are our brother's toper and it is our duty take care of the indigent and not the duty of the government. [applause] dr. ben carson: and you know, another important aspect of our government is to provide for the common defense. now i could talk about this for a long time. but simply to allow our military to deteriorate as it has, to fail to take care of our veterans to the point where we have 22-23 suicides a day, it makes absolutely no sense.
to leave our electric grids unprotected, it needs to be hardened, we need to have several layers of alternatives in energy. you know, this is criminal what we are doing, because we are so vulnerable. you know, we need to really beef up our cyber capabilities. i'll tell you, andre carson administration, if another country attacks us with a cyber attack, they are going to get hit so hard, it is going to take them a long time to recover. we can't let people sit around and let them do stuff. and then we can just say, "you're bad, i don't like you." [laughter] [applause] dr. ben carson: we also need to reinvigorate our space program. i think it is a crime that we have moved away from that. think about all of the inventions, the innovation, that came out of that.
your cell phone, so many things. and the important thing is, in the future, he who controls the space controls the earth. we cannot be tardy to that there are others who are working very hard in order to conquer that area. [applause] dr. ben carson: and then the last area i just wanted to mention briefly, and i could really go on for quite a while on this one, but there is only one business in america that is protected by a constitution, and that is the press. and there was a reason for that. it was because the press was supposed to be an ally of the people. and they were supposed to expose
and inform the people in a nonpartisan way. when they become partisan, which they are, they distort the system as it was supposed to work, and they allowed the side that they picked to get away with all kinds of things. and i think there is still hope for the press. i think it is possible that some of them will recognize that it is almost a sacred obligation that they have to the people. to be honest. [applause] dr. ben carson: now, you know, just in the last week, in my own case, you know, they take something that i said about the shootings in oregon and, don't
put the part in where i was answering the question, don't put the question in, just give the response, and say, "see? he's just been critical of the people." the good thing is, a lot of people in america are onto this and it seems like the more they attack me, the better i do, because people expect that, you know? [applause] dr. ben carson: and you know, last week, i am leading a press conference, getting ready to get on the bus, and a reporter says, "can you tell me what you are going to do about hurricanes?" and i said "goodbye, i don't know." of the next a someone said, "carson doesn't know what he's going to do when it comes to hurricanes." [laughter] dr. ben carson: and this is the level of insecurity that we see here. and it happens on the other side, too. it is not just on one side. i was doing an interview with wolf blitzer yesterday, and we
were talking about the voting rights act, and you know, of course i want to renew the voting rights act or at least the aspects of it that protects all of american rights to us, but you know, it is a much longer conversation about what needs to be done to it before it is renewed. you know, it was something based on conditions 50 or 60 years ago. a lot of things have changed since that time. we certainly don't want to empower the department of justice to do things that some of the holder justice department did based on that bill. so you know, everything needs to be looked at in its context. and win news media picks one word or one phrase and they run with it and they try to characterize it, i've got to tell you guys, that is why people don't trust you anymore. i mean, you are down there with
used cars salesman. -- used car salesmen. [applause] dr. ben carson: so what is a going to take to save our country? courage. it is going to take courage by all of us, including the press, and we have to begin to think about those who come behind us. because what would happen to us if those who preceded us were little chicken livers? what if they weren't willing to take risks? what if on d-day our soldiers invading the beaches of normandy had seen their colleagues being cut down, 100 bodies laying in
the sand, 1000 bodies laying in the sand, what if they had been frightened and turned back? well, i guarantee you they were frightened. but they didn't turn back. they stepped over the bodies of their colleagues. knowing that in many cases that they would never see their homeland or their loved ones again. and they stormed those axis troops. and they took that beach. and they died. why did they do that? they didn't do it for themselves. they did it for you. and they did it for me. and now it is our turn. and what are we willing to do for our children?
for our grandchildren? are we willing to stand up? are we afraid that someone is going to call us a nesting in? or that we are -- a nasty name? or on we going to get an irs audit? or that someone is going to mess with our job? you know, we have a lot less to lose than they did and people are always telling me to hang in there and not let it get to me, that believe me, do not worry about it because the stakes are much too high. thank you very much. [applause] >> thank you, dr. carson. we have many questions including many questions about foreign policy.
we have president putin intervening in syria, supporting the assad regime, and this morning, we learned that the president of the united states is ending the program for training the anti-assad rebels. how would you as president approach of the syrian situation? what actions would you take? dr. ben carson: well, i think it is a very serious situation and i think we cannot simply be passive in a situation like this. you know, when the russian generals tell us, you know, what "we don't want you guys flying in this area," my response would be, "go take a flying leap, we are going to fly where we want to." but we have established our own no-fly zone with turkey and i think we need to recognize, why is he really there? you know, he said he was coming there to fight isis. has he really been fighting isis or al nusra and everybody who,
in fact, is opposing sod -- opposing assad? i think you will also see that assad is getting a lot of help from the supreme leader of iran. what is going on there? these relationships are complex. some people are surprised when i indicated that putin and iran's leader has a long relationship. coming -- khomeni was in the same class with masson -- moussaud and they were already quite familiar with a young vladimir putin at that time in university. i believe that putin is very desperate right now because oil prices are very low. that is what has been precluding
his expansionist activities. it is not us, believe me, it is the economic situation. now, he can get a foothold in syria and then begin to spread his influence throughout that region, and if he can gain control of significant energy reserves, he might then be able to have a much more, have much more control on energy prices throughout the world. and that will then emboldened him to his he will be stripped of what he needs to do. but we need to fight him everywhere. you know? we need to be reestablishing the missile defense system, i think, in eastern europe, we need to be supplying arms to the ukraine. we said we were going to protect them if we gave -- if they give
up nuclear weapons, and they give up nuclear weapons, and did we protect them? of course not. it is too bad that we renege on their responsibilities, so we need to oppose him at every step and we also need to take advantage of his economic weakness by using our economic strength and very wise ways. >> the house is looking for a new speaker and there is a report that mitt romney called paul ryan and urged him to run for speaker. is paul ryan the guy? should he run for speaker? and as president, how would you work with congress to end the gridlock that has defined washington so often? dr. ben carson: paul ryan is a fine person. i like him. i like a lot of people in congress.
i hope the process plays on. i hope that a number of people will present their philosophy for leadership and that there is an opportunity for the members of congress to see who they want to work with as their leader. what i would do is i would have a policy of talking. you know, the current administration doesn't talk a lot to the people in congress, not even to their own party. how can you come to resolutions without talking? i mean, what happens to four people get divorced? -- two people who get divorced -- to people who get divorced? they stopped talking. they become the devil incarnate. i think if we are willing to sit down and talk about it, then we
find that we are not nearly as far apart as we think we are. we do have to keep the instigators out and the people who try to irritate and agitate. you know, good example of that is a few weeks ago when i was on "meet the press" and i said anybody from any religion or any background who is willing to embrace our values and is willing to put our constitution above their belief system is acceptable to me. i don't know why that is a difficult subject for people to understand. but anyone who's belief system does not conform to our constitution and who is not willing to put that on our constitution, what with that person be the leader of this country? it doesn't make any sense. [applause] >> in your first three months in office, how would it be
different? dr. ben carson: well, first of all, i would call for a joint session of congress and i would want them to know that under a carson administration, we recognize that the people are at the pinnacle and that we work for them and they don't work for us. and we have to begin to also understand that we are americans first and democrats and republicans second or maybe even third. you know, we have to stop fighting each other, because one of the things that i think threatens to destroy our nation is the extreme divisiveness. we've gotten to the point where either somebody disagrees with you, then you will need to try to destroy them, destroy their family and their livelihood. where did that come from? i guarantee you it did not come from our judeo-christian values and roots. [applause]
>> as president, who would you want as chairman of the federal reserve, and what kind of qualities would you want to that person? dr. ben carson: honesty and common sense would be a good start. and that is not to say that we haven't had such people. you know, i like janet yellen. i served on the board with her and she is a very decent person and i think she is trying very hard. but you got to realize that we have put the feds in a very difficult position right now. that is because of the amount of debt we have a chelated -- we have accumulated. it is very difficult for the feds to rise the interest rate to a level with such a high debt. it is still $250 billion a year, so can you imagine what it would be if we allowed the interest rates to rise to their normal levels? we need to be working on driving that debt down, and i have some
ideas on how that can be done. that can have a very familiar rating -- very familiar rate -- very ameloirating process with that. but we cannot just rely on the fed to get rid of the debt in america. we decoupled in 1971, 1933 and 1971, from the gold standard. it doesn't have to be gold. it can have other things we can couple it with, that we have to be responsible to what we do and i think it would make a big difference. >> you mentioned your comments on "meet the press," that i got several questions from the audience related to that. one questioner says "muslims serving in the u.s., there are
muslims serving in our united states military, our police forces, our courts, our city councils, so on and so forth, so how is it ok for a muslim who dies in the military but not have one serve as a judge even though their values are incompatible with the constitution that they serve to uphold?" one question but i think you get it. dr. ben carson: again, a good understanding of the constitution answers that question for you because when you look at article to --article ii and we are talking about requirements for the president and they have to be a natural born citizen, why is that the case? i am sure if you had gone to the
founders and said, "what about this person? they may not be a natural born citizen, but they have been an american for most of their life and they are a fine, upstanding citizen, they served in the military, they came back, they are on a police force. can they be the president?" and they would have said "no. we don't even want to take the slight chance that we would put someone in that position who had different loyalties." that is the answer to your question. [applause] >> there is a question about your opposition to obamacare and the question is along the lines of, you are a doctor and obviously all of the parts of medical care are important to
you, preventative care, many of the things that obamacare provides, so the questioner is wondering how your values as a doctor and the importance of people getting health where -- health care squares in opposition with a program that gives so many access to health care? dr. ben carson: chomping at the bit with that one. first of all, the reason that i don't like the so-called affordable care act is not because it doesn't work and not because it is not affordable, but the real reason is because it flies in the face of the very principles to the establishment of this country. this country was supposed to be of, four, and by the people, and the government was there to facilitate life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. with that act, the government
comes along and says, "i don't care what you people think, this is what we are doing and we are going to cram it down your throat and if you don't like it, too bad." there right there is an idea that is antithetical to the government and it flips the relationship and it puts the government in the driver's seat and it puts us at their beck and call. and it does that with the most important thing you have, your health and your health care, it is not too long before they start to do all of that with every aspect of your life and it changes every aspect of america, and i want to turn that around in its tracks. we have to once again restore the people to the pinnacle. now having said that, i do want everybody to have good care. it is consistent with who i am. and i have talked about a health care system, but let me just talk about the part for the indigent. how do we take care of the indigent now? we have medicaid. $400 billion-$500 billion a year. there are way too many in this program, by the way, but we can
address that by how we can get the economy rolling. we have $5,000 for every man, woman, and child in medicaid that is allocated. what can you buy with that? most car veers practices cost between $2000-$3000 per year -- concierge practices cost between $2000-$3000 per year. i am not saying that we could do that, but i am saying that we have enough money to do that. and what is the result of that? now when mr. jones has a diabetic foot ulcer, he is not going to go to the emergency room, he is going to go to the clinic where he can get the same treatment that instead of just patching him up and sending him out, they are going to tell him that they are going to get his diabetes under control.
there is a whole other level of savings which is not being recognized right now and we are teaching him personal responsibility rather than dependency. those of the kinds of things we should be doing that will cost us a lot less money and everybody will be of equal value. you won't have people who are going to be told that they don't want to be seen and they will have to go to the emergency room. it is going to cost us actually less money. it is the kind of thing we should be doing and we -- less money. it is the kind of thing we should be doing and we can be doing and we should take care of our people. [applause] >> i have received several questions from the audience about guns and your comments about the holocaust and if jews have been able to protect themselves -- jews had been able to protect themselves, there
would not have been a holocaust. i will let you clarify on that. the whole approach on mass shootings, if you have more people armed, could that stop more of these mass shootings? dr. ben carson: the whole comment on the holocaust, that again is just the left-wing press trying to stir up controversy and that is just what they do, but basically what i said is that when you're in the occurs traditionally around the world, they try to disarm the people first. and that is exactly what happened in germany. in the mid to late 30's, they started the program of disarming the people, and by the mid-40's, look at what had happened. it has happened in another -- and i number of other countries as well. daniel webster said that people have not been imprisoned in america because we are armed. i am not happy to look at ways to keep these tragedies from occurring as long as they don't interfere with the second amendment, and that is what we
have to keep in mind. and then, what was the other part of that question? >> will it help prevent more of these mass shootings? dr. ben carson: with a mass shooting, one of the things that people notice is that they tend to go to places that are gun free zones. so even though they may be mentally disturbed, they are not so mentally disturbed as not to be able to realize that if you go someplace where people can show you, you are probably going to get shot. so what i am saying is that it is probably a good idea to make sure there are people in the areas where we have vulnerable people who can oppose these people not just with words, but were trained, you know, they can be retired policeman, retired -- policemen, retired military, but i would feel a lot safer if my child was in a school if someone could protect them if someone came in.
to me, what i am talking about is common sense. some of the people out there, there is no such thing as common sense. [applause] >> we are almost out of time. for i ask the final question, i have some housekeeping. the national press club is the world's leading, professional organization for journalists and we fight for a free press worldwide. to join the club, go to our website at press.org. i also want to remind you about some upcoming events. on thursday, october 15th, the club will hold its annual fourth estate award gala and this year we will honor gwen eiffel -- gwen ifil, and she is the comanaging editor of the "pbs
news hour." we will also have an event of 100 years ago when senator ted kane faced off with the members of the news media spelling bee. [laughter] >> and on friday, kevin costner will be here to discuss his new book. i would now like to present our speaker with the honorary national press club mug. [applause] >> you are developing a collection. dr. ben carson: thank you. >> so a couple of final questions. if the situation was right down the campaign trail, circumstances changed, would you consider being donald trump's running mate? [laughter] dr. ben carson: the press will have a field day with this one.
and by the way, before i answer that question, i just want to mention that many in the press will say that i am sensitive and you know, i should not be thinking about running for office because i get offended by what they do. of course they will say that. but the reason that i expose the press is because i want the people of america to understand it is not because i am sensitive. i will continue to expose them every time they do something. as more people understand who they are and what they are doing, it will negate their affect until they have the kind of transformation that is necessary for them to become allies of the people. we have to know what they are doing. in terms