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tv   The News Hour With Jim Lehrer  PBS  July 28, 2009 7:00pm-8:00pm EDT

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economy,iven the financial problems and so on, it is ve, captioning sponsoreby macneil/leer productions >> lehrer: gooevening, i'm jim hrer. on the newsho this tuesday t lead story is the state of play on health care reform d the debate over a public insurance plan. then we ha the other news of the day. part two of our kaas city forum wh federal reserve chairman bernanke. a newsmaker ierview with brish foreign secretary miliband about the afghan r.
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and a reportn the dangers of iving while texting and taking and more. major funding fothe newshour withim lehrer is provided by: >> what the wld needs now is energ the energy to g the economy hummg again. thenergy to tackle challenges like climate chang what is that energy came froan energy cpany? eveday, chevron invests $62 million people, in ideas-- seeking, teaching, building. fueling groh around the world to move us all aad. this is n. ergy. chevron. intel. supporting mathnd science educaon for tomorrow's innovators. and the william and fla hewlett foundion, working to lve social and environmental problems at home a around the worl and with the ongng support of thse institutions and foundations.
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and... this program was made possib by the corporati for public broadsting. and by contributions to youpbs station fromiewers like you. ank you. >> lehrer: e wrangling over alth care reform resumed in earnest today in cgress. there was talk ofossible progress on the senatside while house democrats labore agaito round up votes on their side. newsho health correspondent betty ann bowser has our lead story report. >> reporter: the fos in the senate mained on a bipartisan group of finance committ members, who've rked in secret foweeks. it s widely reported they're nearing a compromis thatiscards key white house priorities. a governme-run public-option plan to compete with private insurance compaes and a
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mandatfor large businesses to provide coverage for tir employees. the senators were also saido bealking about including an independent government commiion that would have authority to set medire reimbursementates, and was nsidering taxes on so-called high-cost "cadillac" hlth insurance pls. committee chairman max baus addssed that point as he headed into another rounof talks. >> probably because it raises revenue, but second itdoes mend the growth perd. >> reporter: meanwhile iide the capitolthe democratic caus met to brief members on the state of negotiaons, and so r there does not appear to be any agreement. one hou democrat opposing the bill, michan's bart stupak id the logjam remains. >> we have no bil >> reporter: but the numberour democrat in e house, john laon of connecticut, said there's reason for hop >> i rain confident that will me to agreement then be out
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about this businesshe dissension within demratic ranks made it less and less likely the house will pa health care refo before the augu recess. the senate has already ven up on that go. house republicans argued tay the impasse bolstertheir claim tt the demoats' plan will fa because it costs too much. > house republicans and a handful of democratsre on the verge a historic victory for americataxpayers and for the american health care enomy. >> reporr: president obama continued mang his case today, at an a.a.r.p. town hall meing in washingto ( plause ) he said ain health care reform is crucial to medicare's survival. >> as costs balloon, so es medicare's budt. and unless we act withi a decad within a decade, the medicare trust fund wilbe in the red. now, iant to be clear: i don't
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want to do anything thatill stop you from getting thcare you need, ani won't. but you ow and i know that right now spend a lot of money in our heal care system thatoesn't do a thing to improve people's health, and that has to stop. >> reporter: the present continues his health care campgn with 2 more town halls tomorrow, in virgin and north caroli. lehrer: judy woodruff has more about one of t key questions coress is grappling with whether to include a puic plan. >> woodruff: for that we tn to two people w have been closely watchi this battle and maki heir case on that question i their respectivhealth care blog ezra klein is wi the "washington st" and recently he american prospect." and, tevi troy writesor the "criticalondition" blog of the "national review." served as deputy secretary health and man services during the bush admistration and is now a senior fellow the hudson instite.
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good to have bh of you with us we appreciateour being here. let's tartout, and w know it's hypothetical, it hasn't come out of coness, they're still negotiating. but ezra klein, if there we a public plan, who would run it? how would it work? how would it be dferent from the private insurance many people are used to now? >> i wish i culd answer it me clearly. thers many of the plans are availab, some would be natiol, some would run ates,ome would be triggered by conditions not beinget and one condition say private insurers don hold down costs, then five years the public claim comes in being. bu the public plan would be private insurer, an surance plan run by the governme, available only onhe health insurance change. so availabl to those people who areble to b into the new regulated marketshat are at the binning only available to ton employed small businses andelf employed. >> so when we ask w is eligibe, you're saying the
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unemoyed? >> small bunesses, certaly he first couple of yrs businesses under0 or 20 people,elfemployed but, i wo at the "washington post" and i could not buy continue a public plan becae i could notet into the heal insurance exchange. >> eventually would be to enrge it? >> som people are that idea, otherson't. itt= not blt in the bill that that would happen. >> tevi troy, what's yo understanding what w a public planould be? >> i agree with a lot of what he said,. also agree that there would be limitation at first t then would expand long-ter you'd see goverent king over more of the system. >> as in medicar >> i thi a medice model likely. d i think that someing where y have the government and thepayer setti the rules, determining who is i nd who's out, deteining whacoverage is availae, what products can cover, that's an important poin ezra has said i the past that
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e of the biggest oblems withhe public plan is the cycle of innovation, which products ke it forward and which don't. >> dohe proponent of a plan agree that it's what tevitroy just dcribe? >> no. putting that aside f a minute, there are a couple different theories but at the outset the plan der consideration is one insuran opti that will compete among many. tevi is correct tha there are people who would like to se itrow, but it's important to be clear aboutheamerica indiana. it would grow to be like mecare, turns out to be cheaper and have higher quality than competing private insuran, and i said ople choo it. the whole idea behind the public plan is at you can choose it. if it works wl, it will either be a good choice will force prite insurers to compete more efficiently for nsumer dollars. >> if the idea is tt it's available tomore people and on can cose it, then tevi
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troy, telle, whas it that the opponents object to? >> of cose againat first perhapeople, they are limited. b my concern is that there's this iss of crowd out. you have people loing at the system in the ivate insurance, and they start bleed continue the plic plan and the public plan gets larger and laer. >> what do youmean bleed io, becse it's atractive in terms of tes? they find it mo attracte because the gernment limits the cot, an because it subsidize it. so people blee into the syste they switch from the private cerage to the puic option, and more a more ople discover . unds like 0 millioneople woul engage in a crowd out type of behavior. >> now we've heard the pluses and minusesf what it might tail. ezralein,ho isn favorof it and why a they in favor of it? the people you generally see puing for it are not only democrs but consumer
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groups, folksho believethat private insurance hasn worked very well, that it's done too much to limit coverage, too much to press peopleut, too muchto take health care ay from people who needed it, too much to deny peop who came in and ve pre-exisng conditions. people believe the system we have isn working. it's iteresting seeing what theenate finance committ may put out, because at public plan is a wildly popular part of health ca reform, people like the idea of having one more inrance option among many, beuse in recent yes we've had consodation and mosteople don't get much of a choe. >> tevi troy, the opponents what do they not lik about it? >> first all, i'm not sre 's widely popul,ecause capitol hill it does not apar to have the votes in the senate or the hse to pass. the opponen don't like t ft that it would be a gernment plan that like medicare was ju going to go bankrup as president obama said befe hand in about ten years. so it's extmely expensive,
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it could couldn't limit to coverage. it could leadto rationing. you c ration by line, whi thedo in cada, by limiting products and availability ke they in engld, >> you can rationby price, which is most probly in the u.s.. >> how cfident areou that it'completely off the table? there arereports today that it's off the tle and negotiato are not looki at ? >>'m confident that it'snot ing to pass bere the august recess. >>hat are you aring about it,zra klein,as to where it stands? > the national finance, it doeexist in the national health an, which has already passed thatcommittee and it exists in theouse bill, which has cme out two coittees so far and they're till rking its way through. so i don't think it'sff the table. in some wys i'd be surprised if you don't have sothing called a pblic plan in -- >>n terms of the pitical statof play, where is the balance no is it the blue dog democratss?
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the more fiallyonservative democrats, and bet ann bouser's report,have not been forhis, but they might be willing to go along with it? >> they might. i met wit nancy pelosi last week andhe said sh feels th blue dog democrats accept the lead partf the fin bill andre trying to wrk heir way throh what the final fo should be, s it wl be ver complicated. one of the key questionsill be who has more votes and more power at the d of it. ey have sworn they will not vote for plan that not a public pla i've not heard any simila denials from centrist or blue dogs. so people nerally expect a comprise, but you could see dissension fr the liberal rks on this. >> how do you see it a monk t blue dog dmocrats and t republicans? i certainly agree with h, there's a huge psh for a publiplan. harry reid said whether you
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call it a co-op public plan, 're going to have some kind of governmenrun option. that said, i think the blue dogs areery uncomfortable and ty made it clea, i've done a lot of talk rad and oneost said that he in 50 years of broaasting a never heard so muchpublic anger about this blic plan. there is some oppositon out there well. >> you sid whether it were a co-op. this is a nonprofit cooperative agreement. are you saying tat the consertive would pose it even i it were truck toured that way? >> well, thehing about the cooperativis that theyare vague if that it can be wtever people want it to be or peole can see what they want in theco-op. so i think there's a chance that a co-op c pass and brin some blue dogs onboard. however, it cou in the end be very muc like aovernment run option if government sets the rates, picks ople who -- >> recogzing we're still throwing materials aund here tha a lot of us including me don't completely understan at this point, ezra klei,
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what do you think the prospects are, a tevi troy, ho do you see the prospts? >> i ink that idon't think they'll makeit through before the gust reces >> what about the fall? >> i think what happens i hose five weeks in the augus recess crucial, because if congressmen back and wear flak jacks in their drink because of public opposition to the plan, then i think they wouldethink that. however there might be a push t other way, so i's up in the air right no my bet at the endof the day, no blic plan, but something does pass. >> i think you'll see mething pass, probablyee a public plan. at the end ofthe day, health care reform eds up being somethin both democrats from 1994 said when theyost on it they lost big in thefollowing elections and that w true with the blue dogs and liberals. so cob think yoll see in any situation nothing go through. and at the end of th day i think t public plan is popular enough that you' see it inegislation. in one fo or another. >> thank you very much.
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>> lehr: in other news today the senate jiciary committee recommended the fullenate confi sonia sotomayor to the u.s. supreme court. only one of the coittee's 7 republicans, south carona's lindseyraham, joined all 12 deocrats voting for the federa appeals judge. she'd be e first hispanic on the high court. commite chairman patrick leahy aid sotomayor's record prov she does not favor any one group. >> during my time in the senate, i've often spoken to the stanrd values for judicl nomies. a myself whether t nominee be the kind of inpendent judge and be fair and partial. and having reviewed he record, i know the judge sonia sotomayor has been that kind of judge. i'm confide she'll be that kind of stice inhe united states supreme urt.
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>> lehr: the top republican on the committee, senatoreff sessions of abama, disagreed. he cited sotomayor's pa statemts, including her remark that a "wise latin judge might reach a better decion than a white n. >> words that have aning, or testimony, it was not consient with those repeated phrases and statements, but i ave to say her teimony to wa, did n have the clarity and the coelling nature that would oercome those speeches. >> lehrer: the fulsenate is expecd to vote on sotomayor's nomination before it lves for the augu recess next week. on the eonomy, consumer nfidence flagged this month as americans wored about job secuty. the "conferen board" a busins research group reported its confidence iex fell for theecond month in a row. wall street respond to that news wh a mixed day.
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thdow jones industrial avera lost more than1 points to clo at 9096. the nasdaq se 7 points to close at 1975. a n budget to close a huge deficit is now lawn california. goveor schwarzenegger signed the $85illion spending plan today. he also used a line-item vo to mae additional cuts in chi welfare, aids preventionnd healtcare, among other programs. the governor said the budget amounts to "the gd, the bad and thugly". >> demrats andrepublicans alikehate to make cuts in education. and in health ca. and human serves. and services tohe vulnerab citizens. all those things were very toug, and ihinkhat's why you don't see us celebratin le we usually have.
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>> lehrer: thecompromise budget is designed to close a defit of $26 billion the ste had been forced to issue iou's to conserveash. fbi agts searched abroad today for suspect in an alleged terrorist ring. 7 other men were charged yesterday in north colina. they're cused of planning attacks overseas, including pakistan. a fedal indictment said the alleged ringader, daniel boyd, trained in pistan himself, and recruited and trained othersn the u.s.. the government of nigea has posed curfews and sent in troops to quell violence by muslim rebels. the clashes broke outunday in the north, as a radical se attacked police since then, more than people have di. niger is divided between the christn south and the muslim north. the rebels wanttrict islamic laimposed in their region. in iraq, u.s. defense cretary
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gates made an unannounced sit to get a prress report. he arrived a week afterrime minister al-maliki suested u.s. forces might nd to stay beyond011, after all. gates would not disss that issue he met today with iraqi officials. instead, he id it's a subject best left for later. elsewhere in baghdad, a motorcycle bomb killed least eight iraqis and unded more than aozen others. >> hrer: and still to come on the newshour tonight: david miliband the british reign secrety; and driving dangers on the road. that follo part two of our newshour forum th federal reservchairman ben bernke. he spoke sunday night with group of citize from and aroundansas city, missouri. we broadcast the fst section lastight. here now is the second pa of "bernanke on e record" from
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the federal reservbank of kansas ty. let's move on now to th recovery. and the fst question to james thomas. to the recovery itself now. to the present. >> james thom, recent economic graduate from umkc. with the fir phase of the stulus bill in effect now what do you think work and didn't work? >> well, i woulday that it might be aittle bit early to make that judgment. first of all, let me y one other thing, which ithe stimulus pacge is the adminiration and congress. the federal resees got nothing too with it. i mean that's y know, its a difrent part of the vernment. buhaving said that, i think we have to wait a bitonger. the stimulus pacge is a big $78billion package, but something like a quart of that is getting spent th year and not even l of that is actually going into the system ts year.
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so most of the money that's that packa is in 2010. so it may or m not succeed, but i think we' got to give it bit more time. >> lrer: bob litan, you have a similar question, a llow-up questionn that. >> i'm bob litan fromhe kauffman foundion. it's wide known among econists that the employment situation lags the genal econo, that you really need the economto grow at something like 2.5% a year in order t absorb the new workerand also to absorproductivity. so that mes unemployment's ing to continue rising even the economy star to recover. can youive us any idea of when unemployment's goi to peak out and en at what level? >> well, nobody reallknows for sure, course. economic forasting makes weather forecastng look like phsics. (laughter) but you're absolutely ght. it takes about 2.5growth to absorb new workers, ep the unemployment rate aut constant.
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rightow were seeing growth in the second half of the year,ut our best guess, and its oy a guess, is thatrowth in the second half of theear will be abou1% on an annual basis.añ so that's not enough to bng down the unempyment rate. so ourrojections - the federal reserve - the members the federal opemarket committee, which ithe committee that sets monetary policy, pu out forecasts or projectionsour times a year which are plicly available,nd our projections suggest that the umployment te will probably keep risin probab a bit above 10%it'll peak early in 2010, and thn - we could be wrong. it could be a ronger recovery han that. but you're absolutely righ that en after the economy arts to grow again, and were hoping to see that inhe next thirdnd fourth quarters, it'll be a while beforthe labor market, the jomarket, is back to where we want it to be >> lehrer: sudrakeford has a uestion that's also related that. >> hello. my name is sue drakeford.
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i'm a banker at hillcresbank and a board mber with the asn american chamber of mmerce. when this going to end? that's my question. >> that's a great questioalso. (laughter well, there's a heing process thatas to take place. weve made a lot of progress. i said, last september and october we were in the ddle of the worst financi crisis at least nce the great deession. we've seen a good bit of progress in the fincial markets. banks have largely stalized. the stockarket, you know, is up a gd bit in the last few months. creditarkets are beginning to open up again. so wereeeing progress in the nancial markets, which is vry enuraging and suggests that we are going to starteeing some growthn the economy. we' going to expect to see growth in the economy the second part of th year, the picking up in 201 but as the pvious questioner indicated, it probably wilbe longer than
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that before uneloyment comes down to a level that we find acceptable. so t federal reserve has been i'll be very clear. e federal reserve has been putting e pedal to the metal. we have thenterest rate as low as it can go. we are putting everying we can into sengthening credit markets. we are bing up mortgage ecurities to bring mortgage rates down and geteople into houses so were doing everythi we can to support the economy, a we hope thatthat's going to, you know, get us going next ar sotime. now, i want say one other tng, which is that recessions happen. they typically last one to t years. they're unpleant. financial crises can me them worse, anthat's what were eing today. but have tremendous confidence this economy and in the american people. americans are very hardrking. they'rinnovated and creative and they're very ambitio. and we have a mket system that nder normal circumstances rewards those valuab traits. on top of all of at, one of e small silver linings of a this is that pele are starting
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to save morbecause they've seen what happed to their 401(k and to their credit positions. so i have a lot of coidence at within, you know, a few yea, that we will be not only back on ack, but that we will be growing strongly aga. i think this economy cann be kept down. we will y to get through this process. it'soing to take some patience. but i think in the long term this econo will go back to what it h been, which is the most successful economyn the world. >> lehrer: you have aollow-up to that, to what te chairman just sai >> on t small comny specialing in ielligence, my question is... will probably cause the.s. dollar to become weaker versus other cuencys. dollar against other crencies
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so thatepreciating dollar does not cause the inflatiojust when you neeto keep the intest rate low. >> so different parts ofhe government ha different responbilities here. thfederal debt, as im sure you know, the deficit this yr is almost $2 trlion, the largest deficit probably since worlwar ii. next year it'll still be ov a trillion. so these are enormous defits that are adding to the tional debt. of coursehis is a responbility of the administration and ngress, not - the deral reserve has nothing to do with the fedel debt. but i think that, you knowas we look at tha we see - i thinits important to say that even though i don't ink we could havevoided having a big deficit this ar or next year given the weakness of th econo, given the financial problems and so on, it ivery, very impornt for the congress and administration to devep a plan and say here is h were going to get back to fial sanity.
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>>he treasury's strong dollar policy. we think the dlar should be strong and the best way we thin to get a strong dolr is to have a srong economy. had the ecomy is stron, then there a lot ofgood iestment oportunities. and tt causes the dolr to rise. so our whole stragy right now is tget the economy out of the doldrums and back in a growth pah that will attract forgn funds and willet the dollar ankeep it strong. that's our strategy, a strong economy for a strong dlar. >> lehrer: barbara illman, you alsoave an inflation question. >> barbara stlman and i've be retired for a number of years. i wonder whaindicators you are considering in determining whether inflation isoing to become aoncern. >> we look at-- thquestion is hodo we tell what inflation's going to do. well, first of all, wlook at a lot ofndicators. we ok at commodity prices and including energy pris, for example. we also lo at the amount of slack in the economy.
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right now with.5% unemployment d with markets as weak as th are, that is, thproduct arkets, it's very hard for firms to raise theirrices and for woers to raise their ask for higher wages. and inact, were seeing prices and wages being very, ry moderate. so o anticipation is that given the softness othe global economy, that except possily for some fctuations in energy prices, we expector the next couple of yearthat inflation wi be quite low. now, coming ouof this episode, as i've mentionedthe federal reserveas brought interest rates down close to zero. we havput a lot of money into the economy through o lending program. so wee had a loof stimulus, ich were trying to use to me the economy gw. once the economy starts to gw and begins toove ahead, then it will be very iortant for the fed to unwind, rai interest rat, bring that credit ba, bring the money
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back, so that we don have an inflation problem wn the road. we a very confident that we have all the tools we ed to take thoseteps at the apprriate time so that we don make the mistake of ving inflation ulmately. >>ehrer: jared campbell, you heard what the chrman said about e stimulus connection. t you have a concern aboutthe stimulus. you have a question r the chairman aut that. >> i do. good evening. my name ijared campbell. was laid off at the end of last year. i'm happy to report that ive started workinfull-time last moh. in gards to the stimulus, my question is, has enoh money been relsed this year for the impact to be what it eds to be to gethe economy started agai >> well, first, im gladou found work aga. that's good to know the congress and admistration, agn, who put together the stimulus package, made number of decisions wch had to do with how quicklyhe money was gointo get out versus other criteria. so for example, there's, thre were number of tax rebate elements in that bill, and that money goes out real quickly and then people spend itver a fewuarters, so that was pretty
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quick. but there re other parts of the stimulus, infrasucture construion, for example, buildi highways, that kind of thi takes longer and so if you're going to have th in youprogram it takes longer t get out into theconomy. now, giv that the unemployment rate is still likely to reasonably high xt year, fortunately, i think having that stimulus nextear will actuallye helpful and will create some more jobs. so those we the decisions that congress made. we'll have to see w effective thaprogram is. >>lehrer: jack craft has a question about foreclores. >> given the signifance of how - mr >> lehrer: namend mr. >i'm jack craft. 'm a practicing lawyer in kansas city. given the significance of e housing crisisis there any way r the fed to involve itselfn
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incentivesor thee homeowners or the servicers of mortgageo prevent a deteoration of priceserely because of the foreclosures themselves? >>oreclosures are a very big issue. wee put a lot of attention on that issue. foreclosures are bad notnly for the borrer, for the homener, but they're also bad for the community. when you have a lot foreclosures in neighborhood thatrings down property values for others. it brings down tax collectns for the town. as you pointed out iyour questionlots of foreclosures, putng a lot of empty houses the market, is also bringing down hse prices, which is againurting homeowners across the country. so there a a lot of bad effects of foclosures over and above the problems that borrowers have. now,at this point there are a number of differe approaches to dealg with foreclosures and their consequences. the government, not the d specifically,ut the administration and theongress now havtwo anti-foreclosure programs. one is called making homes fordable, which gives subsidies to servicers,educed interest res, to let them help people stay in their homes the other ones called help r homeowners or pe for homeowners, and thatwhat that
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does is bring down the prcipal balance on rtgages so that people aren't under wateraving a principal balance that's greater than the vae of their house. the federal reserve wavery involved in developinghose programs, d we have our enomists helped to develop them. d in addition, we are encouraging very songly the nks that we supervise to ram their staff so they can tak advantage of tse programs and elp reduce foreclosures. i uld say also that the kansas city feder reserve bank and the whole federal reser system is very mu involved in community activities, cmunity work. the federal reserve banks e working close with neighbor wos, which is a nonprofit, to help preserve mmunities and neighborhoods a stabilize them even thoh there may be a lot of foreclosures. so how do you that, prevent t foreclosures from causing a lot of problems ia neighborhood oin a city. so we address things in lot of different ys. fortunately, the foreclosur problem is stillery large.
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we expect about 2.8 millio americans to recve foreclosure noces this year. we hopless next year. ut its one of the key thingso getting the hoing market to stilize and getting our economy back on track. >> lrer: jason wood has a related question. >> tnk you, mr. chairman. jason wood. i work withnited way around our 2-in-1 system inetting homeownerso access housing unselors. i think my queson is more in lht of the report from the federal reserve bankn boon regards to some of the moni that have been relsed to help homeners and more importantly, the money that's beegiven to servicer the report statethat the money maybe uld have been better used if it had been gin to the actu homeowners rather than the servicers. i'd like to get your comntary and what yr thoughts are in regards to that. >> s. fit let me say that im glad to see you doing counling work. we fod that having a counselor helps the borrower wk with the bank, raises the prability of succesquite considerably, so keep up the good work.
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the report you're refring to waa research paper done by some feral reserve economists. it doesn't present an official position of the federal rerve. it's just a research paer. but it address the fact at we d't have much experience with dealing with a feclosure waive le this, and we don't really know necessarily wh the best way is address it. and their proposal is instead of trying to restcture the morage, instead help the homeownefor the short period of time that he or she nee help. if you've lost your j, if you're sick. may you just need help for a few months, and th maybe that you uld go back to paying your regular mortgage. so that's the proposal ey made. that's not the approach th government has ten. the government has taken,s i just descrid, a restructuring apoach, bringing down the payment or bringing dn the principal. we're just goi to have to see ich ones of these programs work and at kinds of modications we have to make going forward. >> lehrer: back in washiton today, seni officials of the obama administration summone top mtgage instry
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executives ta meeting and told them to ramp up their effos to lp more homeowners avoid foreclosure. tomoow night, in the last part of our forum with chrman bernanke,we'll talk about future regulation and consur protections. you can watch the entirevent right now our web site at a one-hour version"bernanke on the cord" will air on most pbs stations. check yr local listings for the time. and on paul solman'making sense web ge, see what former chairmen say about the pow of thfederal reserve. so there, lesson plans about monetary policy foteachers. >> lehr: next tonight: ritain's increasingly dangers mission in afghanistan. gwen ifill has that ory.
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>> ifill: a semn cortege made i way through a small town west of londonoday, carrying our more britisholdiers killed this month in afghanistan. crowds sptaneously gathered to pay trite, as they have been doing all month. july has been the bloodst month for the natcoalition there, 69 soldis and marines havdied, most in southern helmand province. brish forces yesterday ended "operion panther's claw", which paralleled a u. effort to dislodge e taliban from t province. despite some succs in forcing out insurgents, the toll exaed on the brith, 22 dead in 28 days, has added to moting publicoubts in britain about the mission in afghanist. one critic concern: whether thbritish forces there, about 9,000 strong, are equipped cope with t taliban's increang use of roadside bombs.
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last week prime minister gorn brown defendethe war effort: >> im satisfied that operation panther's claw has the reurces it needs to bsuccessful and i ink the fact that it is maki progress athe moment and yielding results alreadyhows that tt is the case. more helicoprs are being ordered for afghantan but on the operations we' having at the moment it is completely wrong to say that theoss of lives has been caused by th absence of hecopters, and that has been cfirmed by people on the ground. >> from training field to battlefield and fromrontline to funer, today's newscast hihlights another day of suffering and sacrifice r our forces in ghanistan. >> ifill:91 britons have died in afghanistan over 7 year a larger toll, n, than they suffed in iraq. askeabout the mounting death toll recently, preside obama stressed e collaborative ture of thwar effort. >> the coribution of the ritish is critical.
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this is noan american mission. the msion in afghanistan is one at the europeans have as muchf not more of a stake in than we do. rtainly the afghans, as well as the pakistanishave more of a ste than we do. the likelood of a terrorist attack in london is at lea as high,f not higher, than it is in the unitedtates, and that's the reason why former ime minier tony blair and gordon brown and others have ma this comtment reporter: british foreign secretary, david miland, speaking to to in brussels yeerday, echoed mr. obama's assessment. >> though know recent sacrices will not be the last, and we also explain e seriousne of the security tuation in afghanistan. our enemies should ner doubt our dermination to accomplish this mission becausee know the very hh cost of failure.
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>> ifill: miliband ao urged britain's european allieto put more effo into the fight in afghanistan. we areoined now by foreign cretary david miliband. thank you for jning us. >> goodto be with you. >> ifill: i it is true that july as the bloodies months for the british wars in afgnistan in seven yars, what do you sayo the itish ople who clearly are losing their enusiasm? >> we say tha this missi is in brita's national securi inerest. nearly threeuarters of the terrorism pls that havepl been eitr taken place or foiled against the u. k. hve their liks into thead land betwen afghantan and pakistan. and our clear mission there is help afghans provide the ecurity to live in their own cotry. at the momt they can't do that their own that'shy ritish and other coalition forces a there. and i think tha we also are to show theritish people but also aricans and others
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around the rld that there i aolitical strategy aled tohe military strategy that's taking pce in the way that your correspdent have desibed. >> ifill you want you t talk about that some mre, because tt's what the whole topic o your speech yesterday at no. what do yo say o political strate that soundsdifferent ears, sods le there's horse tradi. wh you say differently. >> i mea three things above all. they to the heart of how we fight an insurgency. acounterinsurgency is not prosecuted in the w that a conventional war is. we need a politic strategy, first the afghan pulation who support can give cover to an insurgcy, it can mean peoe notnformed on the pling of explosi devices. so we ed a polical strategyor the afghan population about governnswer and development. second, we ed a political strategy for the insurgency, because mt of the people who are fighting agast british
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and american and other forces are notimited to local jihad. se are, their leaders are. ut most of the so-called taliban insurgency are actually people who are in fear of their lives. we need to make sure theyan come within the afghan cotitution. and tirdly, weust need understand that afghanisn has bee the chess bord for other countrysfor a veryong time, especially itsnains, and we need a political strategy for theeighbors of afghanistan, above all pakisn, if we areto stablize the count, which after all was t incubator of trorism tha struck with such deadly effect in the uted states septemb 2001. >> ifill: you're talki to allies, you're talking to afghans, and you're talking to other people who have a sted nterest in this am i correct? yo talk about shipping -- shifting to aolitical approh from a military apprch? >> the bravery and the commitmennot just of the britis forces but amicans
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o and so 40 oth nations, is extraordinary and it's a vital part of thi but we will know that in the end there is no long-term military solution. the military can ceate the space for sustainable politics, sustainable governmes because were not trying to create a come oney in afghanian. we're tryi to ensure that the afghan govnment is legitimate and on august 20 elected afgha government is able to defend its own country. >> ifill: does that alter your way of saying that when the u.s. asksor britn to devote 2,00 more troops to this effort that that i unlikely to hapn? >> i read that in the newspapers, but not in the papers that have co toward us. wee increased our troop numbs now to,000. so that britain is th second largees contributor of troops, and the sond laest contributor of development aid. because we thin the two have to go tother. >> ifill: is th going to continue grow, i guess, is the question. the number ofroops. >>hat depends o the
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situation on the groundnd the bden sharing a monk the allies. because there is 42-country effort, it's iportant that all countries play their appropriate part. btain has increased s mbers and we e guided by theituation on the ground, the assets that w have at our disposal and the fair sharing of the burden. >> ifill:ne of the things you talk abo when you menon the situation on the ground in t speech was tt yo would like to encouge defection monk taliban servisors, taliban activists, suppose, and get them to switch sides. how would you do that? >> i tink in simple terms the incentive for switching has to be greer than the thre to them for stayi, and they face a ve sever threat. becausthere is now severe militaryction against the insurgency on both side of he afghan-pakistan border. and pele who switch nee to know that they're ging to be protected if tey do so, that there wll be legitimate afan authority with international suppo if they so, and that thereill be a lilihood for them.
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because th tragedy is that some of thensurgents are paid 10 a day by t taliban, which is more th the pay of the local police force. we' got to understand this is aout individuals, thinking who is going to win, and they've g to know that they'll be sure on our side. >> ifill: are you confident at hmid karzai i on board with thi idea? that t central government itself in afghanista is strong enough to ll this off. >> that's an important question. presidentkarzai was elected and it's important that we support legitite ected gornment infghanistan. but afghanistan is not like the u.s. orhe u.., it's a society that i 174th in the world development index, with no long-term history of centralized governmentof the sort that you or i might recogniz i think theresident karzai has outlined a very clear vision for his coury and we have to lp him ma sure that he's ale to put it into practe. critically th means ensuring
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that different rts of the 34 provincees of afghanistan, there e clean, noncorrt governments able to le change inhose provinces. >> ifi: he seems to be re focused on the idea of civilian casualtiesnd what allied forces can doo redu that. are you with himon that? >>hat's important. evy time that afghan vilian is killed by our forces,y the taliban, that obviously is a major loss to all of us. i think we've got to remember though that e number of cilian casualties is f outwehed by thenumber being killed b the taliban, but nonetless it's a real issue. the y mccrystal, the newly appointed commanderf the international foe there, has made clear his determine makes to minimiz beause the political strategy of the afghan people depd on us showing th that we're on their side >> ifill:is thisll bound up with protect wit the outcome the august elections which are cong up quickly >> tey're very important. credible gernment is critical for the polical and
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military drive foard in afanistan, extra oops are there to help guard the 7,000 stationed, large numbers o afer afghans have registered. and it's vital th they are th security that allows them to vote again. rememberhere are 4 cabinets in thi presidentilection first round and ty need to have a proper cice to see the ture ahead of th. but we need credib government inab you. in kul. >>ifill: do you believe that mccrystal and t ministration are in lock a the on this approach, this shift away fr milita mphasis to political emphasis? >> yes, i do. i do challenge the idea of the shif what there is is an expnation of a comprehensive approac president obama has been clear about th to mr. brn in britain has been ear about this. it's got to be military plus politics, plus economic and soial development. that be in't a comphensive
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approach and it has be done in pck tan as well as afghanistan. because we should ow,we were withdrawing this border two years ago. and it's a very forous borde an the bad land stret across thefghan-pack tan border. we nd a more stable pack tab to get more sble afghanistan that's why i applaud at presidentobama's officials are doing in ter of rebancing the relationsh. >> ifill: david miliband, thank you for ining us. >> tha you very much. >> lehrer:nd finally tonight, the dangers of using a cel phone while drivg. and to ray suaz. > suarez: those dangers migh seem obvious toost. b a series of studies and recenarticles in the "new york times" suggest the risks associated with calling or xting while driving are significantly higher an many people alize. among the findin:
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drivers making phone call were four times likely to cause an accident as other drivs. and ung a hands-free device did not siificantly reduce the risk of an accident. some of e data was compiled several years ago, but waonly recently reased through freem of information requests. e latest research was published today. it found trucks who texted whildriving were 23 times more likely to crash. david strayer is an pert on stracted driving who has published studies of h own. hs a professor of psychology at the universityf utah. professor styer, i know that ese devices are in more hands every day and thus in more drive' hands. do we know if textin while driving is somhing that people are doin more frequely to begin th? >> it is. it certainly a growing proble especially withyounge drivers, teens and soorth.
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up to 50%f the teens repo hat they text messagehile driving. it's withhedvent of some of thesenew technoloes, the cell phone, text ssaging, ansome of thether aspects of things like i pods and rth, there's re and mo gadgets that are tradg subantial new source of distractio in a vehicle. >> suarez: you mentioned all the new macnes that can accompany a driver in t driver's seat. is i possible to compare the level of distrtion to compare talking on e phone to texting, toiddling with your ipod t reseng the gps? >> someof the sties have been done to try andenchmark the hazards. so when people have lookeat the risk ofalking on a cell phone, you're about four time mor likely to involved in an accident wn you're talki on a cell phone. that data com from both
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epidemiological cash data as well as driving simulator dat they provide show tha the risk are aut four times higher and that talking on a hands-free celphone, many people think that wou be a soluti, turns o not t be a solution all. the hands-free cell phe convsations are eve bit as hazardous as usg a conventiol hand held ll phone. in both caseshe risk is about ur times great than if you were driving without distracon. an to put that number in some context, other stues that have looked at e crash risk f people who are iving when theye drunk at a .08 bld chol level has arash rifk that's about four times grter. so when you look at things like te meaging it becomes much greater. so our studies have found that the odds of getting io an accide are mor like eigh the os ratio is about eight tim greater an for
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nonstracted driver, and as you mentned earlier the work fromirginia tech showed that some of theeople who were trucking maybe much as 23 times more likely to be invoed in an accident. >> suarez: if you're watching a person either at a simutor oratching them facts they drive, what's different about the level of distraction if you' talking toan acal human being inhe carver sus taking to someone on the phone, veus getting a hit from them and then quickly tying back to them a response to their last message? >> it a good question, because y basically have two tis of communication, first rig next to you where the person that y would be talking to on a phone, bth are conveations, s they turn out to have very dferent distraction profiles. when someone has a passenger in the vehicle, theare ctually lightly less likel to benvolved in an acciden thanif they're diving by themselves. so there doesn'teem to be a substanal crash risk f passenger conversations. and of course cel phone
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conversations increa the risk substantially. one of th reasons for tha is that with a passenger, especially adult passenger, ey'll adjust their conrsation ke pending on drivi difficulties. they mighttop talking, they might alert the driver to hazard or remnd them of their exit. so what happens is you rlly havetwo sets of eyes, the passenger, th a passengern the hicle, and it produces a different kind of conversation. suarez: is there much variation ong drivers and their abity to do more than one thing at a time? betweeyoung and old drivers between men and women, betwn peop who are coul be different kinds of driving? >> we know that the are se gups that seem to be at risk. teen drivers, for example, tend to be at risk for ting to multiraffic. they're justlearning how to dri, so some of th things at a more experienced drir might have automated are still efforul for a teen driver.
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and unfortunately for the teens w are probably just learni to drive and they're also probably the mt likely to be multi tasking, either using one or ipod or text messaging, there are some individual differences. but as fars we can tell, 98% of thepopulation shows substantial signicant impairmenthen they try and multi task using a cl phone >> suarez: so thebottom line, doing anything besides driving is going to me you a worse driver? >> wellnot always. those kds of technologies that we just mentioned certainly are. but lstening to the rio doesn't appear to prode substantialimpairment. listing to books on pe also doesn't seem to pruce substantial impaient. th appears to be largely becau a lot ofthe imprment associated with using a cell phone come from speech prodtion, the actual generationof speech. and if you' just passively litening to conversations or the radio it seems no to produce the kind of impairment
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you wod see if youere engaged in a conversation on the phone. >> suarez: we have veryittle time left. but some stat havepassed laws against textin while driving, others haven't. have seen any fference in those places yet? >> i tnk it's too early to know utah, f example, just put a law i place, but it just went on the books jul1. i think it an uphll battle just bause you've got so many different ways that person can be distracted with wiress technology. and s one of the things i think is lely to happen i withhe with text messaging and theimpairments that we see it's likely to raise the dialogue about what we should do with driver dtraction, because it's becomin a greater and grter problem. wars professor, thank you for jning us. >> lehrer: again, the majo developments ofhe day. th wrangling over health ce reform resumed
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senators worked toward a possible deal that dps two of thpresident's main ideas, a government-run plannd an employer mandate. and the senate judiciary committee enrsed the nomination of sonia sotayor to the u.ssupreme court. it gs now to the full senate. an online-only feature tonht. a link to the pbs program no science now, for preview of tonht's story about a rocket aimed at smashing into thmoon, to search r water. check your local listings r the time. we'll see you on-lineand again here morrow evening, with the third part of oubernanke forum, ang other things. for nowi'm jim lehrer. ank you, and good night. major fding for the newshour with jim lehrer is provid by:
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chevro intel. suporting math and science education for tomorrow innovators. the natiol science foundation. supporting education an research across l fields of sciee and engineering. and with the onging support of ese institutions and foundations. and... this program wamade possible byhe corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to ur pbs station fr viewers like you. thank you. captioni sponsored by macneil/lehrer producons captionedy media access group at wh access.wgborg égxv
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