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tv   Martin Bashir  MSNBC  June 11, 2013 1:00pm-2:01pm PDT

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tayyip. it's tuesday, june 11th. and we gooe begin with breaking news. protests have raged today in turkey where police fired tear gas to clear the crowd from istanbul's taksim square. the clashes have been escalating for almost two weeks after hundreds gathered to protest against the redevelopment of a park. the protests have now broadened with demonstrators accusing the government of becoming increasely authoritarian and trying to impose conservative islamic values on what they see as a secular state. joining us now live from washington is ambassador mark ginsburg. ambassador, you've been watching these scenes an is we have. the prime minister erdogan says
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he will not show any more tolerance towards protesters and also says we will be at the necks of the provocateurs and terrorists and no one will get away with it. he's deeming these environmental protesters to be terrorists. >> well, it's absurtd, martin. look, i've spent plenty of time in turkey this past year, nine trips in all and the fact is is that while this is not tiananmen square and prime minister erdogan leads a democratically elected government, there has been no doubt in essentially what is happening is a societal division between a more secular urban environment that does not want to see his islamist oriented party impose islamic laws on them and a more consecutive countryside where he gets most of his support. and the key here is that to understand is that in the rest of turkey outside the major cities, these demonstrators do
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not have a wide amount of popular arp support. however, with that said, martin, the fact is that he is trying to impose a great deal of restrictions on civic rights and civil societies morays in a country that has grown up largely secular. >> yeah. now prime minister erdogan is in his third term. he's been in power for ten years. is this an example of an individual who has now become comfortable in his position and is imposing what he really wants for this nation? >> yes, absolutely. you've hit the nail on the head. remember the great godfather of turkish secular xwrix is ca maul addaturk. prime minister erdogan seese himself as the next incarnation of the great future leader after ottoman empire that will emerge under his rule recall far morris lammist. he wants to reverse course and
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reimpose islamic traditions and morays on a society that was largely built for the last 70 years on secularization and in effect a division of church and state. what we're seeing here right now and what these protesters are largely protesting about is not necessarily are building a new park in taksim square but essentially the denial of alcohol, restricting women's rights, the imposition of sharia law through turkish parliament. these are the issues that are really riling voters. >> yeah, now, as you know, turkey's performance during the recent recession has actually been very optimistic and positive. this as economy that so some extent has boomed while the rest of the world's global financial sectors have actually been in free fall. >> exactly. in fact, prime minister erdogan has garnered so much popular support because fundamentally,
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he may be islamist in his orientation but he's also an unan adult traited capitalist and he's lifted a lot of restrictions on turkish markets. he's permitted new foreign investment. turkey has become in effect, the march market of export for the rest of the middle east and turks are growing wealthier by the day under his rule. >> yeah. obviously, they're in that strategic position as they are mediating between east and west. but despite this economic success, mr. bush er dver -- mr. erdogan, between 1999 and 2008, the european court of human rights made 1600 judgments for human rights violations. we know that he's jailed about 76 journalists. it seems to me on the economy he seems to be very progress be i, very capitalistic, very forward thinking but when it comes to
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things like human rights, he's extremely backward. >> you're lul right again here martin. the fact is his popularity has come on the back of in effect, restricting the rights of critics to his regime. he's thrown journalists in prison without any real charges which is quite offensive. he's also in effect undermined other political parties by claiming that they're engaged in all sorts of seditious behavior. he is a man who does not tolerate anycrittism of him personally. in that respect, he's extraordinarily authoritarian in his own attitude about his role in turkish society. as a result, the government around him is largely violated every number of lawsen abimposed new laws to restrict human rights and civil liberties. >> right. and the european union which prime minister erdogan has been seeking to join formally as a full member, they've been in negotiations i think since 2005.
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but this isn't going to help his prospects of moving from an associate member to a full member of the european union if this is the way he treats what are reasonable democratic protests. >> these protesters have legitimate greempbances against a regime given the track record that you laid out. yet, at the same time, martin, i'm sure it should come as no surprise to you that while turkey had long sought admission to the european union, its own economic boom in effect it now believes that it no longer needs to be part of a european union in order to grow its economy. if anything, it believes the eu relationship would become aim position on its economic growth. so at this point in time, erdogan and his government has largely thumbed its nose at the critics in europe accusing him of rye slating human rights. >> turkey is bordered by no less than eight countries, iran, iraq and, of course, syria to name three of them.
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is erdogan do you think leaning towards agaffiliation more formerly with islamic republic leaders as opposed to his prior affect which seemed to be, are as i said earlier, seeking a relationship with the european union, wanting to be built on capitalistic secular are principles as a government? >> this sunni islamist leadership that is headed by erdogan is really almost wanting to reconstitute a new ottoman hegemony over the middle east. he sees himself as the next great of sunni arab leader to emerge that will have in effect the right blend in his mind between democratic tradition and islamic law. he has tried to export the ten at the times of his party to morrow cook, to tunisia to be oppose the more radical
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islamization taking place and yet on his borders in syria and iraq we're seeing the fault lines between shiite clashes. inside turkey what you're seeing is the fault line between secular and a morris lammic society. >> ambassador ginsburg, you've been terrific. thank you so much for joining us to help us talk through what's happening right now in turkey. we'll be right back. [ male announcer ] what?! investors could lose
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>> you are looking at a live shot from turkey where the scene at this hour has calmed slightly pr earlier in the day but it has been a day of violence with clashes between protesters and police. turkish police have fired tear gas at anti-government demonstrators driving thousands out of istanbul's taksim square.
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we'll bring you more on that story as it develops this hour. but we turn now to a big day on immigration as the senate takes up the second of two votes to move forward with a sweeping overhaul of the nation's immigration system. the senate is expected to pass the measure to proceed with bringing a bill to the floor. but the degree of support is being closely watched as a signal of the efforts overall momentum. earlier this afternoon, the senate held its first full vote on immigration in nearly six years, passing overwhelmingly you 82-15. the first procedural hurdle in the effort to remake the nation's ilgration laws. that gets the debate off on the right foot, but it's just a start. and earlier today in a speech at the white house, the president added his push saying the bill is not perfect, but now is the moment to come together.
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>> nobody's going to get everything that they want. not democrats, not republicans. not me. but if you're actually serious and sincere about fixing a broken system, this is the vehicle to do it. and now is the time to get it done. >> he pointed to the extensive bipartisan negotiation that's gone into this effort by groups like the gang of eight and his call for bipartisan action was greeted in kind by a passionate marco rubio on the senate floor this afternoon. >> the fact that we have 11 million people living here, we don't fellow who they are, where they are, they're not paying taxes, that's hurting america. it's bad for them, but it's really bad for our country. leaving this in place is not an option. >> across the aisle and with a cross cultural emphasis, democratic senator tim kane offered his support of the bill with a floor speech delivered
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entirely in spanish. [ speaking foreign language ] translation? it's not perfecto but it's not amnesty. even the house speaker is sounding optimistic. >> what's the most important thing you'll get done this year? >> i think immigration reform is probably at the top of that list. >> signed into law? >> i think by the end of the year we could have a bill. >> one that passes the house, passes the senate, signed by the president? >> no question. >> what's he done within john baner? leading a patriotic field to the proceedings, senate majority leader harry reid says he wants a vote by independence day. >> our goal should be to pass a bill that stays true to our principles and with as many votes as possible. i'm confident that we'll achieve that goal by the fourth of july.
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>> a crucial few weeks begins now with life-changing legislation for millions hanging in the balance. let's get right to our panel with us from austin, texas, msnbc and nbc latino contributor victoria depr francesco soto and stephen horseford, democrat of nevada. congressman, since it's your debut on our broadcast, we'll start with you. you heard your fellow nevada democrat harry reid, he wants this done by fourth of july but senator ted cruz rejected that idea a short time ago. take a listen to mr. cruz. >> this bill is going to pass the senate, but as written, this bill will not pass the house. and if this bill did become law, it would not solve the problem. indeed, it would make the problem of illegal immigration that we have today worse rather than better. >> so there's mr. cruz putting the "p" into pescyism.
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what's your reaction to that, sir. >> this is a big day. it's a big day because comprehensive immigration reform is moving forward finally after more than three decades. and it's time because we have a broken immigration system as president obama and others have said, this is not a perfect bill but it's a fair and tough bill. it's a just and humane bill. it's something that's going to keep families together. it's going to require employers to only hire those who are authorized to work here in america. it's going to insure that we continue to strengthen our borders. and most importantly, it's going to keep our families together. i am confident that we're going to get this done this year. >> congressman you just described it as a big day but for senator cruz, it's a very bad day. >> well, there's some people who just unfortunately, don't want to be part of the solution and working together. there is overwhelmingly bipartisan recognition that our
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immigration system is broken. and it's broken for the dreamers who have come to this country at no fault of their own. people in my district like allen and astrid who want to contribute to this country who want a pathway to citizenship and it's time that we deliver on behalf of all the people who deserve that pathway to citizenship. >> here here sir. victoria, i can't remember the last time we've seen such a show of bipartisanship. rubio, the president on the same page. speaker john boehner exhibiting rare signs of obtyism and cooperation, with but not everyone is singing "it's a small world after all." take a listen to alabama senator jeff sessions. >> the sponsors that are producing legislation for us today will not say amazingly how many people they expect to enter
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into our country if their bill passes. why not? you don't know the? or you won't say? either one is an indictment of this monstrosity. and that's why it cannot pass. >> so victoria, this bill passes and all the borders are overrun. mayhem ensues. >> you know, i don't agree with ted cruz very often and the clip you just played earlier he said if immigration reform passes that it won't necessarily solve immigration. and i do agree with him to an extent because there's so much focus on border security that we're not keeping our eye on the real issue of why people come here in the first place, because of the demand, because there are employer who's want to hire these hard-working folks. so if sessions and cruz and all of the naysayers took some of the resources that they want to throw at the border and take 20,000 troops that they want to put at the border and put that
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to looking into the fields, the meat packing plants where immigrants illegally are hired, we won't have an illegal immigration system. so it's disingenuous of republicans to put all of the onus on the border and not look at the pull of the business side of it. >> absolutely. congressman, the amendment phase is next. and as you know, we might see a bipartisan bill laden with all manner of the pet provisions. and by pets i mean alligators lining themosts at the border, of course, as represented by herman kane and presumably all of these poison pill amendments may ultimately kill the bill anyway. >> well, look, there's already been more than 100 amendments adopted through the senate judiciary committee process. and while there may be additional amendments brought forward in the senate debate, we need to stay focused on what this is really about. this is about people. i believe comprehensive
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immigration reform is really the civil and human rights issue of our time. and it's time that we focus on what this means to families, what it means to our workforce. we have one in four startup tech startup companies that were started by immigrants. major fortune 500 companies that were established because of the contribution of the immigrant communities. and that's a big part of our heritage as a nation. yes, we are a nation of laws. and yes, we are a nation of immigrants and we need a comprehensive immigration bill that reflects both. >> congressman stephen horsford a baptism on our broadcast. thank you and victoria defrancesco soto, thank you both. coming up, escalating unrest in turkey. richard engel is live from the pro testifies just ahead. if there was a pill to help protect your eye health as you age... would you take it? well, there is. [ male announcer ] it's called ocuvite. a vitamin dedicated to your eyes, from bausch + lomb.
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we continue to watch a day of violence in turkey that has seen clashes between protesters
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and the police. this has been on going for almost two weeks. joining us now with the latest from istanbul is our chief foreign correspondent richard engel. richard, we can see from what you're wearing that you're protecting yourself presumably from tear gas canisters. what can you tell us is going on right now? >> still a lot of tear gas. it's starting to feel like istanbul is tear gas city, which is certainly not the image the turkish government or the turkish people want to project of this fantastic city which is normally some so peaceful, so full of tourists especially right now during the high season where the hotels just in this are sometimes three, four, 500 euros a night. things have, and i use this word cautiously because they could change in an instant, have died down somewhat compared to what they were an hour or two hours ago.
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there are still protesters here but they appear to be mostly the diehards. not the same numbers that we're talking about hundreds, not the thousands. now, the police now still fair firing tear gas. clearly are a more relaxed atmosphere. some are sitting down. maybe it's a shift change. but right now, we do seem to be at least in a lull. what is going to be interesting i think is what will happen in the very early hours when people sleep if anyone is going to sleep in the square tonight and they have been sleeping here for the last two weeks and what will happen tomorrow morning when larger crowds will start arriving? will the police allow them in? because generally protests are have had somewhat free access to the square. i wouldn't be surprised if tomorrow the police encircle this and try and keep the numbers limited. we'll see if that strategy works. i would suspect that that is the next step based on ow how the
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ebb and flow has been going here. >> prime minister erdogan says he will not show any more tolerance towards protests are and has been quoted as saying "we will be at the necks of the provocateurs and terrorists and no one will get away with it." i thought this was a protest by environmentalists campaigning about the redevelopment of a park but the prime minister describes them as provocateurs and terrorists. >> so to explain it further, yes this protest movement began with a small demonstration but environmentalists, by architects, by civil engineers who were opposed to building a park. but whenever these kind of protest movements begin and clash and start, then the composition of the demonstrators does change. there are some people among these crowds who i think you would call professional
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provocateurs. people who came in specifically to do this. the one who are damaging shop windows. there have been bank windows that have been smashed, graffiti put on buildings. the famous anarchist sign, the "a" that extends outside of a circle. you see that on walls all around this area. so it has expanded to beyond just a few what you would say is the most innocent of protests, and i think the prime minister's probably overcharacterizing them describing them as terrorist and saboteurs. there are a lot of what you would describe as normal people, people who don't protest formally, people who are genuinely opposed to what is going on here and genuinely opposed to the reaction that is given. but among the crowd, do you have certainly a radical element. >> some are suggesting that istanbul's taksim square is the turkish equivalent of egypt's tahrir square. but that seems surprising since
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the turkish prime minister has not generally been reviled in the way that mubarak was. is that right? >> i this i that is absolutely right. the problem with mubarak at the end of the day was that he had been in power too long. he was never properly elected. three decades in power. and then as a an 0 plus-year-old man he decides to tell his people that the only person fit to succeed him is his young son who would then remain in the country presumably for decades to come. this is in a country that is poor where many egyptians struggle to find enough food to eat and feed their families. that is absolutely not the same situation here. prime minister erdogan was democratically elected three times. he could, if he wanted to, draw enormous crowds of supporters not just here in taksim square
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but all across the country. he has a base of support. he has been economically successful. he's one of the key u.s. allies across the middle east. he underestimated what has happened here and continues to underestimate it. he has been consistently describing this as a marginal movement. when he's been asked about the movement particularly in the early days, he seemed annoyed to even have to address the subject. and that will certainly didn't help the mood of the protesters who just said that was more evidence that the prime minister has become aloof, that he's become detached and somewhat drunk on his success. >> richard engel as ever, we're very grateful to you. live in istanbul. please stay safe and thank you. coming up, where in the world is edward snowden? the nsa would like to know. stay with us. (girl) what does that say?
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you know that we've entered the silly season of summer when speaker john boehner is defending the president. that is essentially what happened this morning when he was asked about nsa leaker edward snowden. >> he's a traitor. the president outlined last week that these were important national security programs to help keep americans safe and give us tools to fight the terrorist threat that we face. >> indeed the line's taking shape in the nsa debate are unusual given the nature of partisan contemporary politics. officials like the president and mr. boehner are on one side. on the other, a different bipartisan clique led by democratic senator ron wyden today demanding new hearings for the purpose of determining whether administration officials have told the truth about data collection.
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>> it's not possible for the congress to do the kind of vigorous oversight that the president spoke about if you can't get straight answers. >> joining us now is dana milbank, a political columnist for the "washington post" and professor michael eric dyson of georgetown university. i'd like to put this question to you if i might begin with the profess professor. it's a serious question. is edward snowden a traitor? professor dyson. >> well, that depends on who's speaking. i think that many people think that if the president said let's have a vigorous conversation, i welcome debate about what's going on in this country around intelligence gathering and data collections, then edward snowed is a hero to many people, a whistleblower and not a traitor. a traitor to the worst instincts of american democracy. whether or not he can technically be tried is a different matter. but i think that ultimately if the truthing will out and we understand better we're more
quote quote
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transparent what's going on here, what we need to keep secret about and tell the truth about in the open public square, then that conversation has been furthered and mr. snowden played a critical role in that. >> dana, speaker boehner calls him a traitor. is he a traitor. >>. >> i don't see it that way. i see what this whistleblower did was let the public know about something that every branch of our government, this administration, the previous administration, the congress and the courts were keeping from the american people. they created this situation. this was a pressure valve that burst. and it's a good thing that it did. >> let me play you mr. clapper's response to andrea mitchell's question about whether he told mr. widen the truth about data collection back in march. take a listen to this. >> i have great respect for senator wyden. i thought though any retrospect i was asked when are you going to stop beating your wife kind
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of question which is meaning not answerable necessarily by a simple yes or no. so i responded in what i thought was the most truthful or least untruthful manner by saying no. >> professor dyson, i would hope that being asked if you beat your wife does require a very clear answer. but what is your reaction to mr. clapper saying his initial response in march was done in the least untruthful manner? >> that man is so slick. you're not beating your wife but you're killing your dog. the reality is this, martin. that this bit of chicanery, this bit of rhetorical manipulation goes to the heart of the problem. the problem here is that we don't have transparent sit. we don't have open processes by which we understand and determine what's acceptable and not acceptable in terms of an intelligence gathering and data collection. and as dana milbank said the reality is this. if we're trying to talk about democracy and the civil liberties upon which that
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democracy is premised, we've got to have the ability to hold to account our political figures here. and this kind of i didn't answer truthfully or untruthfully. come on, man. the reality is he did know what was going on and when the senator asked him what was going on, he already knew he knew. so i think that the reality is we've got to make hard and fast rules here that govern what's going on. otherwise, we've got an orwellian situation where the massive surveillance of american citizenry goes on. and guess what, this introduces us not only into a mccarthyite situation but a situation when minority communities which have been under surveillance forever can have something interesting and smart to say. >> dana, this is a weird moment politically because you're either on the bipartisan side of the president and speaker boehner or you're on the bipartisan side of ron wyden and republican mike lee. which is it? >> right. it's an extraordinary thing to see this democratic senator
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taking on this democratic administration. >> yes. >> i by the way, think that wyden is correct on this for the mere fact that he gave that answer in advance to clapper. he did not answer it truthfully. you're seeing a split between the civil libertarians on the left and the right and you're seeing sort of the more national security national intelligence people on the other side. trillion interestingly you see a lot of liberals and democrats who were opposed to this type of nsa program under the bush administration are now more in favor of it and republicans going the other direction by which i guess we have sort of a tribal political culture. >> we do. i'm confused already. dana milbank and professor michael eric dyson, thank you so much. coming up, those darn millennials and their world wide web. they play the villain in today's top lines. stay with us.
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noise canceling headphones? [ nicole ] that's a great idea. [ male announcer ] home insurance that saves you money for not having a claim? that's allstate home insurance with claim free rewards. talk to an allstate agent... [ doorbell rings ] and let the good life in. >> from glenn beck's lost tonguing to fox and their friends, the incredible hulk. here are today's top lines. kids these days. >> the government has been actively collecting an unprecedented amount of information on that small select group of us who either make phone calls or use the internet. >> i'll bet the amish are feeling pretty [ bleep ] smug right now. >> back during the campaign we talked about doing away with some of those agencies. >> commerce, education and the -- what's the third one there? >> out of control government. it's not just a possibility. it's not just a probability. it's reality. >> people are insecure and think that we need more
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authoritarianism. you're justifying dictatorship. >> ♪ . >> former cia employee edward snowden, that sounds like a game of thrones player. >> the leaker, behold the face of evil. >> ez oo a traitor. >> this is a peculiar route he took. i mean, he's a whistleblower who then blew the country. >> off-color >> he doesn't want to live in a society where the society monitors its people. and then he fled to china. >> we have good chinese food. >> they are going to look into his girlfriend. she's flexible and she's a pole dancer. >> she knew he was a mystery man. >> yeah, baby. >> you referred to her as a pole dancer. >> you're right. she's a former ballerina. >> i think she probably worked for the ballet and not for dollars. >> how is it you were able to communicate internationally over a period of time with someone working as a contractor for the
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nsa right under their noses? >> we really don't know exactly exactly what the government is doing. >> here's the message for the president. i'm in philadelphia. he doesn't need to look at my phone records. i'll just go ahead and let him know where i am tonight in case he's looking for me. >> let's get right to our panel. a contributing editor for rolling stone, tim dickinson joins us. from washington, jonathan capehart of the "washington post," of course. i want to start, gentlemen with a david brooks column from this morning's "new york times." mr. brooks suggests that the reason edward snowden leaked this information is because of his youth. brooks writes "though thoughtful, morally engaged and deeply committed to misbelieves, he appears to be a product of one of the more unfortunate trends of the age, the atomization of society, the loosening of skoeshl boonds, growing share of young men in their 20s who are living technological existences in the fuzzy land between their
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childhood institutions and adult family commitments." tim, what's your response to that? >> sort of typical david brooks hooey. he's sort of boomer paranoia about this coming generation. i think what snowden is a throw back to something we saw in the cold war. he's a dissident. >> the cold war, tim? i thought mr. brooks was saying that all sensible behavior occurred until about, well, i don't know when you were born but at some point relatively recently and now this generation of millenials are run agmocking with no respect for institutions whatsoever. >> snowden is a guy who saw something monstrous happening and it appeals to his conscience and he had to speak out about it in a way that made him persona non grata in this country. we understand that in a different context as a dissident. we need to revibe that word for him. >> tim dickinson's says he's not a disso lute youth.
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jonathan, what's your response? >> i wouldn't say that edward snowden is a dissident youth. david brooks' column resonated with me. he writes along these lines quite frequently about the atomization of society, about how young people coming up today don't have a sense of community, mutual responsibility. and so in that vein, i thought that the david brooks was dead on. i don't view edward snowden as a hero, but i don't view him as a traitor, as well. in order to be ate a traitor, you have to reveal some huge state secret that endangers the country. as walter pinkus in the wost "washington post" pointed out today both the telephone records issue and the sort of data mining issue of the national security agency have both been reported. the former by "usa today" in may 2006 the latter just last march in wired magazine. >> right. jonathan, i want to spare your
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blushes but is your reaction to mr. snowden in part a function of your own age? >> well, you have to understand i am considerably older than mr. snowden so. >> jonathan, our audience would not believe that for a moment. >> tim, david brooks goes on to list all of those there's mr. snowden has betrayed. i'll read again. he betrayed honesty and integrity, the foundation of all cooperative activity. he betrayed his friends. anybody who worked with him will be suspect. young people in positions like that will no longer be trusted with responsibility for fear that they will turn into another snowden. is it not extremely farfetched to suggest that because of this leak, young people will be viewed as unable to cooperate, unable to abide by the rules? >> you stopped short of the most appalling things that he said that, snowden had violated our privacy and betrayed our constitution. talk about or yellian.
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this is a guy exposing massive violation of privacy and a massive -- i think it's typical david brooks. he's very deeply invested in the establishment. snowden is not. but i think he's very deeply invested in our values of privacy and sort of universal right to privacy. the idea that our government shouldn't be conducting suspicionless surveillance on this massive scale. it led him, his conscience to speak out. i don't think that has anything to do with his youth. it has more to do with his integrity. >> john, final question to you. were you at all surprised that a man who was concerned about the transparency of government in this country should flee to a former protect tore rat of britain that is now part of china? >> exactly. that was the thing i found most interesting. you do this huge bit of civil disobedience, being a dissident as i think tim just called hill
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and then you flee to hong kong which my thinking was wait, he fled to china? and then in the interviews talked about how he went there because of the society's openness with the internet and how he wants to go to iceland for the same reason. look, if you're going to do something like this and you want to be a champion of transparency then in addition to handing over the documents that you did to the "washington post" and to the guardian, why not stay here, hand yourself over to the fbi or to the federal authorities and stand and stand and you know accept the consequences here at home. >> absolutely. jonathan capehart of the "washington post" and tim dickinson of "rolling stone," thank you both, gentlemen. >> coming up, the senator who wants to take on the big banks. answers the question, why can't he? [ male announcer ] this is kevin.
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it's possible that you are a little poorer today. to be precise, about $13 billion poorer. that's the amount banks charged users in overdraft and other fees in 2011. according to i an report released just hours ago from the consumer financial protection bureau. of course, that's just one of many problems americans have with the big banks. there are the cases involving mortgage fraud and too big to fail, problems that cannot be handled by regulation alone. joining us now is democratic senator shah rod brown of ohio. good afternoon, sir. >> good to be with you. >> thank you for joining us. you are working with republican david vitter to end too big to fail. can you briefly summarize for our viewers how your bill, your proposal would lessen the risk of another 200782008 disaster? >> yeah, our fundamentally our legislation exerts more market
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discipline on these six wall street banks that have a built-in advantage based on their size and based on the fact that the market not senator vitter or me but the market considers them too big to fail. so they can borrow money at lower rates than you can and the huntington bank in columbus can and a community bank in sick more or cold water ohio can. so our legislation primarily briefly it sets higher capital standards for these six itch megabanks whose assets are each worth more than $500 billion and second, it confines the safety net, if you will, to traditional bank activities. in other words, it doesn't ensure or give incentives for these big banks to engage in the kind of risky behavior that drove this country almost over the financial fiscal edge that did such damage to pain street five years ago. >> and is it your view that if this broproposal were to become
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law, it would prevent these banks from routinely exploiting ordinary members of the american public who were victimized by so many of them? >> yeah, these banks, look at it this way, martin. 15 years ago, 20 years ago, the largest six banks in this corrupt their combined assets were less than 20% of gdp. today the largest six banks combined assets are more than 60% of gdp. that means it's not just their economic power in the marketplace that gives them advantages and gives them ability and enhances their ability to say for want of a better term to take advantage of people. it also means their political power is so enhanced. that's why even though we passed dodd-frank which was generally a good bill three years ago, many of the rules to enforce, to enimpose more market discipline on the banks have not even taken effect yet because the banks are so powerful at getting their way in this town. >> many of your critics have said breaking up the banks would
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actually reduce united states' influence in the financial sector, in the global financial sector. what's your response to that? >> there's no evidence for it first of all. they say these large corporations would not be able to get sentencing. the fact is, if you're going to borrow $10 billion and you're a multinational corporation, you don't borrow it all from one bank nor does one bank want to lend you the whole $10 billion because it's too much exposure and risk for either the bank or the corporation. so the they always put together deals. deals with lots of different banks to raise their capital to get that kind of financing. so in fact, if you calculated american bank size the same way the europeans do with their bank size, america would have three of the largest banks in the world. so their argument don't hold water. >> absolutely. >> the cheerleaders from wall street, you know the schticking >> senator, i'm so sorry. we've run out of time.
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but i hope for the sake of ordinary american citizens that this proposal proceeds. thank you, sir. >> we'll keep at it. >> we'll be right back. i turned 65 last week.
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thanks so much for watching this afternoon. chris matthews and "hardball" is next. the fog thickens over foggy bottom. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. let me open tonight with this. something may have gone wrong at the state department. there are now disturbing allegations of serious abuses and perhaps interference in several investigations during the period hillary clinton headed that department. documents obtained by nbc news that relates to an ongoing investigation involving the state department contain disturbing allegations. an october memo cites


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