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tv   PBS News Hour  PBS  September 3, 2018 6:00pm-7:00pm PDT

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captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> yang: good evening, i'm john yang. judy woodruff is away. on the newshour tonight, journalists are sentenced prison terms in myanmar after reporting on the mitary's ethnic cleansing campaign against rohingya muslims. iren, on the eve of brett kavanaugh's tion hearings, we take a look at the supreme court nominee's life and r cord. and, one year afterricane harvey, are emergency response systems prepared to handle another catastrophic storm? >> will our systems be able to prioritize any of us who might have a medical emergency at home in the midst of a disaster? >> yang: all that and more on tonight's pbs newsho.
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>> the william and flora hewlett foundation. for more than 50 years, advancing ideas and supporting institutions to promote a better world. at >> and with the ongoing support of these institutions: and individuals. >> this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station om viewers like you. thank you. >> yang: the gulf coast is bracing tonight for a storm that could grow into a hurricane and reach land by late tuesday " tropical stordon" formed over the florida keys today and
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headed toward mississippi and louisiana. rains and winds up to 50 miles an hour closed beaches in miami today. there were also limited power outages. a u.s. soldier was killed today in eastern afghanistan, and another was wounde officials said it appeared to be an insider attack involving afghan security forces. in all, six u.s. troops have been killed in afghanistan this year. thousands of people turned out in chemnitz, germany today, for a concert agait far-right groups. protesters, including neo-nazis, have descended on the city since migrants allegedly stabbed a german man last sunday. some chased foreigners and gave the "hitler salute." concert organizers said today they hope to send their own signal. >> ( translated ): and i think sometimes it ijust important to show that people are not alone, and that we are not being left alone, for which we are very grateful to everyone on yoage with us today, but also ev who will come and be in front of the stage today.
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>> yang: german authorities urnounced today they will increaseillance of the far-right alternative for germany party. activists from the group have joined neo-nazis in the recent protests. migrants trying to reach europe from libya are dng at higher rates this year. the united nations reports arrivals in europe are down 82% in the last 12 months. but more tn 1,000 migrants have died at sea-- one for every 18 aivals. that's up from one death for prery 42 arrivals in the ious year. officials say libya's coast guard is intercepting more boats, so smugglers are using more dangerous routes. and, in brazil, a huge fire destroyed the country's 200- year-old national museum in rio de janeiro overnight. firefighters and museum workers struggled to save some of the 20 million artifacts. they included relics from ancient egypt and greece, and the oldest human skull found in the western hemisphere. >> it's a loss for the world. this can never be recovered, for
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the people, the buildi. there is no way to get it back. thankfully no one died but the loss can never be recovered. >> yang: there was no word on how the fire started. firefighters efforts were slowed d cause two nearby fire hydrants not work. still to come on the newshour: two reuters journalists sentenced to prison terms after reporting onohingya massacres. a look into the life and work of supreme court nominee brett kavanaugh. klitics monday with amy walter and tamaraeith, and much more. >> yang: today, a judge in myanmar sentenced two reuters reporters to seven years in prison. they were charged withal possession of official documents. as nick schifrin reports, they had been reporting on government led massacres of rohingya villagers. >> reporter: this morning,
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wa lone walked into court as a journalist. a walked out a convicted criminal and tol fay links of his former colleagues his conviction overroad his country's riewferl >> they're obviously threatening our democracy and destroyingof freedom he press in our country. >> reporter: he and his colleague ky soeoo were bundled to the back to have police van for doing their jobs. be able to practice withouthould intimition and fear and this hese has very much undermined freedom ofedia in mirn ma. >> reporter: last year, wa lone and kyaw soe oo bega investigating. rohingya have long been tarbyted the minimum yarr millet. last year min myanmar military
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was accused of setting fire with genocidal intent. the reuters journalists discovered ten muslim forced to watch neighbors dig a shallow grave, sn afterwards all dead, tiot by minimum mar troops. they have mony from the buddhist villagers. the government refused to consider their work journalism. myanmar's transition was aupposed to be led to burgeoning democracy from military rule, but the government pursued the charges against the journalists. >> we must in the long term preserve the stability of our country. >> reporter: human rights activists saintoday's sentencg is about silencing criticism and is a parody of jstice, says reporters without borders daniel. >> this very heavy sentence ofar
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seven against the journalist is clear and set sign that the transition, the democratic transition inyanmar is going to an end. >> brown: kyaw's wife used to take her daughter to school. they cried outse urt as he and his colleague were sentenced to prison. >> yang: stephen adler, thank you very much. the judge accused your reporters of breeching the officials secrets act, did they? >> absolutely not. they violated no law and in fact did absolutely nothing wrong. they are guilty of committing journalism. >> and ty and their lawyers told a specific story about how they ended up in court. do y believe that they wer actually set up by the police? >> yes, absolutely, and it's not
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just the story that they told or that the lawyers told. police captain testifying for ae pros cushiondmitted under oath in court that the whole thing was setup, that there had been a meeting to discuss how to set them up, how to provide them with documents wrapped inside a local newspaper and what to do and the fact that they had to best ar when they left the restaurant where they were meeting. so it was clearly setup. also the testimony of the police was completely non-credible. e ey had ridiculous locations whey claimed the arrest occurred. one of the people supposedly at the arrest said that he had notes of the arrest but he had burned them, so he did not have them in court. another one wrote his script on his hand so he wouldn't forget what to say. this was mething where there was just no ambiguity. >> do you think the judge ignored some of that evidence to hhe contrary and do you believe thatis conviction was pre-ordained? >> well, there's no evidence
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that rule of law was involved here, no evidence that a typical due process trialwas occurring. this did seem like just d not comport with what anybody would view aofs a rulaw case. so we were not at all surprised at the resultbecause they shouldn't have been arrested and charged and they certainly shouldn't have been convicted. so there was just no evideannce, there were diplomats from many countries in court. no ambiguity about it, nobody disagreed, no debate, everybody understood this was a complete >> not everyone, of course, believes that. suchi is the de facto leader of myanmar and has defendethe court inthis case. do you believe she has been an impediment to the release of the journalists? >> i say every outside observe b studying this trial is absolutely clear that not only are they not guilty but that the trial was a setup in many ways a
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sham. vo to what the government's ement or position is, i think now is the time for us to truly come to understand thatw because the time the trial is over and the government is in the position to d something about it. the government is in the toition to release them, free them. so now's the time we're going to find out to what extent the to, first is prepared of all, undo this wrong, but positiontablish their of some respect in the global community. i think everybody is watching. diplomats from all over the world have been in the courtroom, have been participating. secretary pompeo went to talk to the foreign minister. nicki haley at the u.nspoke strongly on behalf of our journalists in the security council. so i think now the is the time ct find out what the myanmar governmentlly intends to do. >> do you have any notion the government would consider commuting their sentences or su chi could be involved in trying to reverse this decision?
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>> i have no evidence at all but we are going to work hard starting now to get them released and we think there are mpportunities to get the released and it's our job and we are absolutely committed to trying to get them out. >> and have you spokennen to su chienr has there any communication with her and has she been an impediment in this? >> i don't want to compromise anybody who may have done win thing or another in this case, but we're not trying to make thna a persothing, we're trying to help the process go forward so that they can be released and that is our only goal. we're not taking sides in any conflict, we're not anti-government. we don't take positions as reuters, we just try to report the news. so in this situation, we're just trying to get them out, that's all we're trying to do. >> and you are still reporting the news. what will the impact of this case be onyour ability and your desire to cover myanmar and the ongoing story in myanmar and
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bangladesh. >> we published the story. we published the assacre of the ten rohingya muslims and we've continued to do investigative pieces about howou va attacks and massacres have occurred and what's going on in the refugee camps and we absolutely intend to do that. we have not been intimidated, n'deterred and we wobe. we think this is a very important story. the only reason we're sere to do important stories. the only reason an organization likeurs goes to dangerous places is not to court dangerous but to get impoant stories and we think this is an important story and will continue to cove it. >> stephen adler, editor-in-chief of reuters, thank you very muc >> thank you, nick. >> yang: tomorrow bretth kavanaces the senate judiciary committee in the first
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day of his confirmation hearings to sit on the supreme court. tonight, lisa dejardins has a look at the mahis record. >> desjardins: brett kavanaugh has been here before, before the senate judiciary committee, and before many of the same senars, 12 years ago. >> i have dedicated my career to public service. >> desjardins: the aim then was his current job: a judgeship on the powerful d.c. circuit court of appeals. then, as now, republicans praised kavanaugh's qualifications. >> i don't see how we can find a better person to serve and givel puic service than you. >> desjardins: while committee democrats, like senator chuck schumer, said he was too political. >> if there has been a partisan political fight that needed a very bright legal foot soldier in the last decade, brett kavanaugh was probably. >> desjardins: it was a pivotal washington test for kavanaugor who has a thghly washington resume. born and raised in the nation's capital, he returned after yale
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law school to clerk for supreme court justice thony kennedy, the justice kavanaugh is now obpped to replace. kavanaugh's next jropped him into a once-in-a-generation spectacle: he became a deputy on independent counsel ken starr's investigation of president and mrs. clinton, and helped draft parts of starr's report that detailed possible legal grounds for impeaching mr. clinton. since then, kavanaugh has openly questioned the power of dependent prosecutors, including the supreme court ruling that upheld their existence as constitl. >> can you think of a case that deserves to be overturned? >> yes. >> would you volunteer one? >> no. actually, i'm going to sayne: morrison v. olson. >> they said that's the independent counsel statute case. >> it's been effectively heerruled, but i would put final nail in. >> desjardins: kavanaugh has
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also questioned if presidee s should bprosecuted at all, writing in a 2009 law review article, "the indictment and trial of a sitting president... would cripple the federal government... such an outcrve would ill the public interest". kavanaugh soon had another brush th history, joining the george w. bush campaign team in florida in 2000 for the state's decisive recount. the bush wined kavanaugh to the bush white house, where he eventually became staff secretary, overseeing the flow of documents into the oval office. zemocrats, like senator patrick leahy, son that role, and bush white house controversies, at kavanaugh's 2006 confirmation hearing. >> did you see documents of the president relating tanthe n.s.a. waess wiretapping program? >> no. >> what about documents related to the administration's policies and practice and torture? did you see any documents on that whatsoever, going to the present? >> no. confirmation vote was among the
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more partisan of the time, 57 votes "for," 36 "against," and seven senators did not vote at all. he has had a life outside law and politics, coaching his daughters basketball team in a catholic youth league. but judge kavanaugh is best oown for his writing-- hundreds nions and dozens of speeches and articles. those reveal his role models, what he once called conservative icon and late justice antonin scalia. and last year, he pointed to a different former justice, a chief justice, in a speech at the conservative american enterprise institute. >> i wanted to speak about william rehnquist because he was my first judicial hero. >> desjardins: in 1973, rehnquist was one of two justices who dissented in "roe v. wade," the landmark case legalizing abortion. kavanah addressed that in last-year's speech. >> it'fair to say that justice rehnquist was not successful in convincing aajority of the justices in the context of abortion either on roe itself or in the later cases, but he was successful in stemming the general tide of free-wheeling
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judicial creation of unenumerated rights that were not rooted in the nation's history and tradition. >> desjardins: kavanaugh's own judicial record on the abortion busue is thin. it includes a notable case in the past year, azar versus garza, which weighed if the trump administration had to allow an undocumented teenage girl in its custody to obtain an abortion. kavanaugh voted for a compromise ruling which assumed the girl had a right to an abortion but which also said the government did not have to help her get it, it gave the government more time to fina solution. that was quickly overturned by others on his appeals court and the government wasrdered to immediately allow the abortion. kavanaugh sharply criticized that as "a radical extenon" of e supreme court's abortion pilings. thaton, and his experience were selling points in the president's eyes. >> judge kavanaugh has devoted his life to public service. >> desjardins: but his long
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record is also fodder senators, as he faces the ondiciary committee for the most important confirmaearing of his life. for the pbs newshour, i'm lisa desjardins. ir yang: and this week we will broadcast the tion hearing for supreme court nominee brett kavanaugh. it begins tomorrow at 9:30 a.m. eastern. check your local pbs station for broadcast details. we will also be streaming it at ew yang: stay with us, coming up on theour, what the trump rsministration's recent battles with federal worean for labor unions. one year after hurricane harvey, a look at the failure of the 911 and, author keith gessen discusses his new book, "a terrible country." but firs we break down what to expect at the kavanaugh confirmation hearing beginning
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tomorrow. for that and more, we're joined by our politics monday team of ra keith of npr and amy walter of the "cook political report." welcome to you both. folks, when folks turn in to watch on pbs the hearings tomorrow, tamara, what can they expect? >> tomorrow, there will bec lot of sps. it is opening statement day. so each senator on the ju committee gets ten minutes. there will also be people introducing brett kavanaugh, and then, finally, at the very end, after thlong day of speeches, brett kavanaugh will himself give an opening statement. that's what he's been working on for the last little while. before that, he'd done sort mock hearings with senators and others to practice to get ready to build the stamina for what is to come on wednesday and thursday, which is 30 minutes per senator asking him questiiss. >> yang: there any drama in
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this? >> first off, we have to saopy that p who are up for supreme court positions get to these hearingstheir goal is to say as little as humanly possible about how they could possibly rule on anything. that's sort of the lesson, t at's the way this has developed in the luple of decades, and it means these hearings in some ways have gotten kind of boring. and in terms of whether brett kavanaugh is going toe confirmed, the votes are there, if republicans hang together, which it seems like they will, the votes are there, as long as he has a solid hearing. >> yeah, the drama, too, becomes -- you have a number of people on the committee, especially democrats, i don't g ow, who may be interested in runn 2020. this is a gad opportunity for them to, in front of a nationalo audience, so show their chops, maybe give a statement that'so pithy it gets them on national broadcasts. you have some, like senator dianne feinstein, who had beench lenged by her left, so she's
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probably going to make some pretty strong straiments. but overall, i think tamara put hi very well, the drama comes town to som we either don't know that comes out that he said someing osomething is raised there that really isrows this into question, but the bottom linthe number 51. republicans have 51 seats, they will soon. a're awaiting dove do yo govery frizona to fill john mccain's seat so there will be otes. no republicans look like they at this point oppose him. republicans don't need any democrats to push this nomination over the finish line. >> yang: not only in the committee hearings but once it moves to the senate floor, what can democrats d>>o? hat's been the question all along, how can we do something about this? and there have been all sorts of theories about maybe you should
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shut down or slow walk the hearings. the bottom line is they don't ave the votes, they are in the minori, when you're in the minority, you don't have twehe there was a time when being in the minority didn't give you the power on judiiary appointments, but in 2013, democrats then in the majority, frustrated by orepublicans, slow walki blocking obama's appointments to the lower urts, unleashed what was called the nuclear option, saying they only needed a majority in order to put judial nominations throuh and, at that time, republicans said be careful, this is going to have bigger consequences, and look, lowlow and behold, the republicans came in and said looks like we don't need filibusters for smct either. >> be careful what you wish for. we're here in part bese mitch mcconnell held open the seat
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merck garland was ninated to through the presidential election and that's how president trump has, too, and some could argue that is one of the ways president trump would is that conservatives and especially evangelicals cared much about that seat that they were moat motivated to vote for him. yang: tam, we've lot the last primaries coming up this month, fivin al and four there are insurgent democrats challenging incumbents as the party still tries to figure out who they arefter 2016. what should we be looking for in those contests? >> you know, i think tat it would be oversimplifying it to say it'she berniecrats versus the hillarycrats. i think that's a mistake. there are other interesting dynamics including racial dynamics where some of the candidates who have on won, like
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alexandria cortez, in a district heavily latino she was challenging a big irish guy and she won. e'd in the massachusetts race, tha similar discussion about representation taking place. >> the inthiresting about the primaries thus far, so we are here at the end, is there hasn't been really one theme that's tied all of these together. in fact, there have been very few upsets overall. we're supposedly in this anti-establishment era and threh incumbene lost primaries, two republicans and one democrat tam mentioned. the oned threaat is pretty consistent in the democratic primaries, at least, is the success of women, and when we look at all races that don't in ude an incumbent, but man and woman are running for democratic nomination, women have won almost 60% of those primaries. so being a woman in a primary is probably the most important thing much more so than ideology or who's supporting you or anything else. n fact, i think that's what's
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really blpful, quite frankly, to democrats this year is the fact that many of the rd state democrats who have tien as moderates did not get challenged from the left in their primaries, unlicka mny republicans back in the 2010 year, haves the republicans' big year, whei were b challenged from the right and the sort of anti-establishmeed you know we o throw over the card table, and they knocked a lot of the estabnt people off. that hasn't happened opened the democratic side.a >> yang: weover the weekend the final services for john mccain, particularly the ngtoice at the washi cathedral. uglot of people, most notably his er meghan, lamenting what passed, not just this great man but the spirit he represented had passed. is that likely to change and echo in some of these years and
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thoughts as we move forward? >> on the eve of the midterms, i don't mean be cynical, but that was a memorial service for bipartisanship that passed well before john mccain. >> and the bottom line is the incentive structure in washington now does not reward that. politics is not that complicated. people do things that, if they it. some sort of reward for if voters said, you know watt? i think compromise is the most important asset somebody can bring to the table and i'm only ing to vote for them who show bipartisanship and compromise, we would la ely get different congress. but unless or until primary voters decide that's an important value, the values that we have now, the zero-sum politics, that's going to continue. >> the hilarious thing is, the
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public, everybody says, i just want congress to get things done. you know, i want them to work with each other. then they're like, but i hate 're other party, thethe worst. >> but don't work with that person, and don't ever agree with so and so. >> yang: amy walter, tamera keith, thank you very much. >> youe welcome. >> yang: president trump marked obor day today by attacking the heamerica's biggest labor union. the president said a.f.l.-c.i.o. chief richard trumka spoke "so against the working men and women of our country and the success of the u.s. itself that it is easy to see why unions are uming so poorly." had criticized the naesident's strategy for renegotiatina. white house correspondent yamiche alcindor takes a look at the trump administration and labor unions. the trump administrapeon
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recently rup pressure on organized labor and federal workers. firs, the president issued executive orders limiting the activities of the unions that represent them. about a week ago, a fede judge blocked that action. aen, last week, president trump issuotice to congress, eliminate ago potential pay hike for yederal emplo. that action is also expected to wind up in court. now, we take a labor day look at those stories, and the overa ate of collective bargaining, with dave jamison who covers laboissu for "huffington post." thank you so much for being with me. if president said he's canceling pay hikes for government workers. what does that mean for workers and what's happenning ow? >> this isn't something the president can do unilaterally. in the pay schedule, there was supposed to be a 2.1% pay bump for federal workers. the presideo said he wants t see a zero percent pay increase, kicking the ball the congress. the senate said they think there should be 1.9 pay increase,
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whereas the house ics baally deferring to the president. so this will set up a situation in the congress where tnahe and house will have to get together and figure this out. ase options are to simply do nothing, in which the president's zero percent raise would go into effect or mei xiang do a 0.9, 1 or something like that, but then the bill would be sent back to the president, with a raise he vedn't want to see, and maybe he woul it but maybe not blow up a deal over the pay raise. >> how much power does congress have if everything they do ha to be signed by the president. >> the president said on pri hse ing to look at the pay issue over the holiday weekend. so there is a chance he comes back after labor day and says i've changed my mind and wanto see a raise. but i think the ball with is the house of represeis where you have a lot of republicans who normally would want to see smaller government, lower pay
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nd they'rel workers, a going to have to decide, okay, is it worth bucking the president on this and doing some sort of raise that he doesn't want to see? but ther's a lot of political movements here where you've got vulnerable republicans especially in places like virginia, barbara comstock vulnerable in a race now where she's got a lot ofalfeder workers in her district. so this puts her in an uncomfortable spot where basically her president is saying no pay raises. so there's going to be quite a bit of pushback othis. >> i want to turn to collective bargaining. dee president signed a series of executive s. talk to me a little bit about what he did. >> earlier in white house issued these three executive orders that were really a broad side on the federal unions. one of them would have made it a lot easier to fire underperforming workers. another would have paired back, what's knn as official time, this is hours that union representatives can dote to
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union issues and do grievous while on t clock. and these were really seen as an attack on the unions. and, so, more than a dozen of the unions filed a lawsuit, saying that this was against the law, and just the other day a federal judge agreed, basically said that these agencies -- federaagencies were required to bargain in good faith with the unions and trump's executive orders would have made that impossible. so the key parts of those specific orders vbasically been completely knocked down and, now, you know, unions are celebrating what is, you know, a montary victory in their fights with trump on this. >> the administration said it would appeal. where does it go next? >> it's not clear now. on wednesday the white house issued guiance saying follow the judge's order but there's been conflicng things coming out of different agencies where the unions in some cases said they're not following the judge's order. in speaking with the union reps
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recently, they said hopefully everyone will come back after thholiday, and this will be sorted out and life will go back to normal. >> we often talk about federal workers as people who live in d.c., maryland, virginia. rst where do all these work who might be impacted by these moves? >> president tmp likes to lump the federal workforce with what he calls the swamp. bue federal wors are very different from a fat cat lobbyist in a steakhouse on k street. federal workers are all across thcountry. the vast majority don't even live in the washington area. they work for agencies, like they do social security, medicare, the v.a. there is not a district in the country that doesn't have some amount of federal workers in it, and most of them are basically earning middle class wages, keeping their heads down and 18ing their jobs. >> it's labor day what's
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your view of the labor in this country? .labor movement looks bleak union share is just 6.5% of sector in the private are actually in the union, and unions are fighting battles allr he country. what's going on in washington is one piece of it. a lot of fights in state hses now. they're having a hard time. that says, there are bright spots for unions. you look at the tricher kes that swept the country last year, states like west virginia, oklahoma, arizona. teachers shut it down wanting meaningful pay raises in a lot of case. there are quite a few victories for unions. >> thank you dave jamison of the "huffington post." >> thanks for having me. >> yang: tropical storm gordon heads toward the gulf coast just texas marks the one-yea
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anniversary of hurricane harvey. many of the orest residents in the houston area are still trying to get the assistance they need. and there are other questions as well. tonight, we look at how the emergency respse system was overwhelmed, as told through one family's tragic ordeal. the storm hit with a fury not seen along the gulf coast in more than a decade. 27 trillion gallons of rain poured into texas and louisiana in just six days. the storm's peak, more than a third of houston was under deter. flroads stranded tens of thousands of people. among them: wayne dailey, his wife, casey, and their two sons. casey had just returned home to their trailer park outside of ovuston after surgery to r a benign tumor. t cal officials initially decided againsmass evacuations. harvey presented an enormous 1 test for the region's 91stem
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and how it dealt with urgent medical crises like the daileys'. their tragic story is detailed in a new york times magazine report, "lost in the storm." i spoke with the author sheri frank. she's both a journalist and a physician. >> and the storm bears down and their street starts fill with water, but they have a lot of preparations. you know they're used this kind of thing. there was a fear that if there were mass evacuations, people would just get trapped othe roads like they did with tropical storm allison in 2001. so wayne had done asuch as any of us could do. >> yang: wayne recorded the rising floodwaters. as the rain worsened, so did casey's pain and complications. wayne decided she needed to go back to a hospital-- by helicopter. on monday afternoon, wayne called 9-1-1 and got the police. >> okay, you need medical or is this for a water rescue? >> this is for a water rescue. my wife rently had surgery
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last wednesday. she had a tumor removed from her kidney and she has been very sick with vomiting for past day and a half, with constant erin, so i don't want her to get water inutures. she needs to be airlifted to a i spital. know that coast guard is out doing air rescues right here in my neighborhood >> yang: but the second operator cut wayne off before he could give key icaormation about y's worsening condition. as a result, casey was not y.sted as a medical emerge >> okay, we do have over 1,000 calls for services in this area sistance with evacuation and as soon as the fire department can make it into this area, you will be evacuated. >> okay, thank you very much. >> so when he calledack and called back again he kept getting classified as a water rescue call. now that did have an effect. it was pushed down to the local
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fire departments. there were so many calls that it just went into their computer system. once it moves into that response phase the local fire department was in charge of rescues. t wever that fire department did ve any boats that didn't have any high water vehicles. so it had to just try to coordinate as best as it could with volunteers who had boats untrained volunteers and they just couldn't be everywhere. and because wayne's call didn't get prioritized, it didn't end up being one that they went out to. >> yang: it wasn't until wayne's fourth call to 911, more than 24 hours after his first, that alsey's situation was recognized e a medmergency. by then, trgency responders couldn't find a way to reach her. >> and they never got up the steps to what wayne asked for in ics very first phone call was a rescue helicopter and it just all those various points in the chain re not set up to really work together that communications broke down.
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and as a result they waited and waited for help as she got sicker. alledng: a paramedic d told him to flag down any boat he could. wilunteers loaded casey onto their boat and great difficulty, managed to reach one of the state's high water dump trucks that cod reach an ambulance. e t it was too late. casey died on y to the hospital. she was 38 years old. sheri fink says the daileys' tragedy illustrates the problems of a 9-1-1 system that has not entered the digital age. an internet-based system could eltomatically redistribute calls to less overd call centers and prioritize needs like casey's e think of it as 911 but it's a very localized system. and shockingly it's primarily analog based. it doesn't have a lot flexibility. there's a recognition that we
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need to move to a sort of internet protocol based systems. but because it's public safetyen and it to be underfunded, that hasn't happened a lot as a result. the call centers became the backup point. there re just so many call takers who could take these calls, as the call volumes went rm four times five times up to ten times . and when those calls started g up the call takers jus gave up those protocols that help them do thawhcrucial thing h is to prioritize who needs help the most. >> yg: in your reporting you get any sense that there are lessons learned from harvey? >> well hopefully there will be. what we haven't sort of pulked icly about too much is will our systems be able to ioritize that any of us who might have a medical emergency at home in the midst of a disaster. and that is just critical from the first step of 911 all the way through tohe response and all the levels of the response to figure that out to have
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solid plan in place and invest in the kinds of resources that would allow the syem to do that. because i was told from the county one of the high officials that was their goal their goal was to prioritize people who had a life threatening situation in the midst of a mass disaster. it should. there should be a way to do that. >> yang: the full story can be found on the "new york times" web site. >> yang: and now, jeffrey brown has the latest addition to our newshour bookshelf. >> brown: the year is nd young andrei kaplan, born in the soviet union, raised in the s., is struggling in his would-be academic career and been dumped by his girlfriend. what to do?
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return to russia to care for his aging grandmother and find his way in the new russia. the new novel is "a terrible country." author keith gessen was himself born there, raised here. he's a journalist and editor, translator of the nobel-prize winning writer, svetlana alexievich, and this is his second novel. and welcome to you. >> thank you. >> brown: so this is, in fact, thinly-veiled fiction. can we say that? you went back to russia yourself at that time? >> i did. i did. you know, the question of how much of the material you use from your life is an interesting question. >> brown: mm-hmm. you know, some things you kind of hayour raw material, and then you look at it and you say, well, what can i akdo toe this interesting to someone else who isn't me. you take some things up to ten, keght. you some other things down to two. you look at it and see if that works, and you kind of tinker
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with it. >> brown: you took a lot of nhings up to ten year, as i bringing this young character to this land he sort of knows but doesn't really know. >> i was trying to express something that happens to me every time i go to moscow, which is that i expect it, from reading the news, to be this kind of horror chambter, ri. i expect that i'm going to see people being arrested on the streets, that i f ght myselget arrested. then every time i show up, it gets nicer and nicer, there are cafes, there are people driving nice cars, they're talking on their cell phones, it seems perfectly normal. >> brown: you haverei going in the book find heg can't even afford a cappuccino because they're six dollars and seven dollars in brand-new cafes. >> and he can'tunderstand how all these new people are walking in and buying these expensive coffees and sandwiches and not even uttering a word of protest,
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and that the the kind of paro paradox. on the one hand s nice but the other stuff is going on at the same time. >> brown: yeah, all the stuf t news is real, right? and it comes to you in the book , too, along with the affluence and the growth, the is t political atmosphere, right, oppressive political atmosphere. >> when they were sendering to end the cold war, they were basically told by us that if th built a kind of thriving consumer society, they could so have political freedoms. what's actually happened is that they built that consumer society, but they lost their political freedoms. it didn't go the way anyone thought it would go. >> brown: you wrote an essa recently titled "russia was my obscure interest, now everyone is payig attention," because
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e ere was the period where no s paying attention to russia, and now it's every day in the newspaper. nde you surprised in some way, or how do you resto it once again becoming this sort of boogie man of our political culture? >> i ihavexed feelings. as someone who knows a lot about russia, it's nice to see it on people's minds. at the same time, you know, the political atmosphere in the u.s. right now with regard to russia is, in my mind, poisonous. >> brown: in what sense? i think we're blame ago lot of things on rsia that have nothing to do with russia, right. i think the russians interfered in the election. i think they'd like to be a maligne influence on our political culture, bu was the american people elected
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donald trump. to put all of thonat russia like some people would like to do, i think, is a mistake. >> brown: why is fiction the way to tell what is, after all, a very complicated tale tha you're even trying to tell me right now about how we see russia, how itll rey, is what we might be missing? >> there are two reasons i wrote eme book. one of tas to kind of describe russia at aore intimate level than i had ever been able to do as a journalist, to descri what itells like and sounds like. i thought that could be done in a novel more effectively. and the other reason was a kind of personal reason, which is that i had spenthis year with my grandmother, taking care of her and nging out with her, and that was a really -- it was a really profound experience, it was a very emotional experience, it was an experience where i learned not just a lot about my
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grandmother but a lot about russia, an not just the soviet experience that she had had, but the post-soviet experience that she had had, and her feelinofg being kind of a leftover or irrelevant person who didn't fit in to the new world that russia had become, and that was a kind of pernal experience that could only really be expressed, i thought, in a novel. >> bro i: a'm wondering if for you, as andrei, it is still a country that you know but don't know, a country that is, in some ways, yours butlerly not yours anymore. >> certainly when i kept writing, i saw one of the things andrei was allowing me to do was, because he didn't really know thecountry, because there were things that he encountered that made himad or that surprised him or that depress him or that deghted him, that
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that was something i could sort of wal reader through, you know, through andrei's eyes, and, in that sense, he was a very effective narrater for me. >> brown: the new novel, "a terrible country," keith gessen. thank you veryuch. >> thank you. >> yang: in our youth-obsessed society, there is a multi- billion industry to fight the signs of aging. most of the advertising, warnings, the messaging is directed at women. but women don't have to take the bait. tonight, an american in paris shares her humble opinion on how to age gracefully. f i've never been beautiful, but in my 20s,nd my superpower: i looked young.
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in my 40s, i figured i'd reached wh i deserve obviously ia permanently youthful glow. but then i had what a french call an age blow. waiters started calling me madame. i was shocked. my plan had been to look as young ass possible for long as possible. look, i know this sounds ridiculous. i'm an educated, modern feminist, but i wasn'tne al. for a lot of middle class american women, that's the strategy. so, when madame happened, i only saw a few otions -- spend the rest of my life pining to look 35 again or gradually start to say that i feel much younger inside, or it's great to reach the age where rei don't what anyone thinks. none of these were appealing or even true. then i noticed that my french oarlfriends took a different ap to becoming madame. they explained that, instead ofi
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trying and f to look permanently young, they aspired to be the best version ofhe age at the they are. they kept saying that they want to be "comforble in their own age." french women point out that the beauty of nature changes as geu a but your 40s you look like you have a story, but that story can become parof your allure. we're drawn to an older woman not because she's unlined and perfect, but because she's unique. aarisian in her 60s told me beauty is to see someone's humanity. we don't want to look like we came out of a we're noozen b, we're alive. to age gracefully, in other words, is to sh who you are, and you can't do this if you're terrified. i haven't flipped a switch and started to age like a french woman. heck, not all french women age
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like french women. i do secrehope bartenders will still ask for my i.d., but st naminmy cultural assumptions takes away some of their power, and decidg how i'm going to age feels like a very adult act. maybe that's my new superpower. >> yang: finally tonight, a story about a young girl who has been given tel gift of play. morton was born without bones in one hand. a traditional prosthetic hand would have cost up to $10,000. but, thanks to one organization, cla can play just like her sisters, at t to her family. this story was produced by mary williams, a gwen ifill legacy fellow from hughes stem high hool in cincinnati, ohio >> reporter:dvanced technology is changing the way we live our lives; but for four-year-old ella morton and her mother heather, it has made a huge difference. thanks to some engineering students and a three-dimensional s inr at the university of cincinnati, ellale to enjoy the same activities as most children her age.
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>> when ella was born she has no fingers, she has no bones in the palm of her hands umhe has bones up to her wrist and she h n flex at her wrist but that's pretty mere her bones stop. she's always been very outgoing and doesn't let anything stop her. so ella what do you call your special hand? >> lucky fin. because nemo had a lucky fin like me. >> reporter: eden barcus, ishan anand, and jacob granger are engineering students and members of enable u.c., a student group collaborating with enable an open source organization that provides a variety of cost- effective prosthetic assistive devices. >> one of enable u.c.'s main missions is to provide 3-d printed prosthetics for prosthetics are very expensive, and children grow at a rapid rate. >> this is the second hand we've given ella. and so like if sheuying a
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fully commercial fully marketed prosthetic, evu'y two years going to need a new hand, and where we can just say yeah we'll print you off another one. >> the biggest thing is getting the right measurements of the patient because each patient's a little bit different. and how they useheir hand, and how they hope to use their hand are all different riables you have to take into account. st it's incredible that we can give someone a ptic and give them the opportunity to have full function in both hands. >> reporter: jacob knorr, now a medical student at the cleveland clinic, founded the enable u.c. program in fall of 2015 to promote 3-d printing technology as a way to bridge the g between engineering and medicine. >> ella i will say is probably my favorite, i mean you can tell she just lit up when we gave her this hand and she was able to catch a tennis ball for the first time ever, which is pretty amazing. >> reporter:ll es mother says her daughter can do so much more now that she has two hands.
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>> i don't think they've under-- they totally get-- how much of an impact they've made on our family and ella. the first thing she's always said when she puts it on is look i tve two hands now mommy j like my sisters and i can hold both barbies and i can play, and i can do all of the same things as my sisters do. i'd like to think we never made her feel different, but this just makes it feel more normal. >> yang: on the newshour online right now, merely seeing a political symbol lik elephant or a donkey can cause you to reject facts thrw you would ote support, according to a new study. learn more about the sence of partisan rancor on our web site, and that's the newshour for tonight. tomorrow, don't forget we will broadcast and stream the confirmation hearing for supreme
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court nominee brett kavanaugh, hnginning at 9:30 eastern. i'm ang. join us online and again here tomorrow evening. for all of us at the pbs newshour, thk you and see you soon. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> and by thalfred p. sloan undation. supporting science, technology, and improved economic performance and financial literacy in the 21st century. >> asupported by the john catherine t. macarthur foundation. committed to building a more just, verdant and peaceful marld. more information
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>> and with the ongoing support of these institutions >> this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like yo thank you. captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc captioned by media access group at wgbh
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[ theme music plays ] ♪ -♪ i think i'm home ♪ i think i'm home ♪ how nice to look at you again ♪ ♪ along the road ♪ along the road ♪ anytime you want me an ♪ youind me living right between your eyes, yeah ♪ ♪ oh, i think i'm home ♪ o i think i'm home -today on "cook's country," we're heading to the ballpark. bridget and julia grill up sausage and peppers. jack challenges julia to a tasting of whole-wheat bread. adam reviews disposable plates. and christie makes julia the best ballpark pretzels.