PBS NewsHour full episode November 14, 2019

PBS NewsHour full episode November 14, 2019


JUDY WOODRUFF: Good evening. I’m Judy Woodruff. On the “NewsHour” tonight: Over 900 newly
released e-mails tie the president’s top immigration adviser, Stephen Miller, to white nationalism
and extremist right-wing publications. Then: on the ground in Afghanistan. Our Jane Ferguson goes behind Taliban lines,
where, after almost 20 years of U.S. fighting, the radical militant force still roams. And unfinished business — as older employees
retire, decades of experience go out the door, and companies rush to save all that knowledge. STEVE KEMPF, CEO, Lee Spring: We do everything
to keep our older workers, because they’re — A, they’re so skilled, and, B, we don’t
have the people to fill in behind them. And we have invested 10, 15, 20, 30 years,
some of them, in their skill set. And we want to keep those as long as we can. JUDY WOODRUFF: All that and more on tonight’s
“PBS NewsHour.” (BREAK) JUDY WOODRUFF: The speaker of the U.S. House
of Representatives is flatly accusing President Trump of bribery a day before the second public
hearing on impeachment is scheduled. Nancy Pelosi pointed today to what Mr. Trump
called a favor, asking the president of Ukraine to investigate Democrats, the 2016 election
and the Bidens. REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA): The bribe is to grant
or withhold military assistance in return for a public statement of a fake investigation
into the elections. That’s bribery. I am saying that what is — the president
has admitted to and says it’s perfect, I say it’s perfectly wrong. It’s bribery. JUDY WOODRUFF: Pelosi’s word choice is significant
because the Constitution explicitly mentions bribery as grounds for impeachment. Meanwhile, the Associated Press reports that
a second U.S. Embassy staffer in Kiev overheard President Trump discussing Ukraine and the
investigations he wanted in a cell phone call. That call first came to light at yesterday’s
impeachment hearings. We turn now to our Yamiche Alcindor, who was
at the White House today. Yamiche, pretty strong words from the speaker
of the House. How does this fit in to the Democrats’ strategy
at this point? And what is the White House saying? YAMICHE ALCINDOR: Speaker Nancy Pelosi is
trying to put in the simplest terms possible what she describes as President Trump’s trying
to bribe or extort Ukraine in exchange for an investigation into Joe Biden and Hunter
Biden. So Democrats want to make that point simply
because they think that Americans who are just tuning in might not understand the Latin
term quid pro quo, which is what a lot of people in Washington, D.C., including some
Democrats, have been saying in describing President Trump’s alleged actions. So she’s really trying to get Democrats, as
well as the American public, to use start using the term bribery, because she wants
that to be what people think of as they think about the impeachment inquiries and what President
Trump is being accused of. The White House is pushing back on that. The president didn’t speak out publicly about
this, but he was tweeting. And, essentially, he was saying that Democrats
are going down this unfair path — going down this unfair path of impeachment, of this impeachment
inquiry. He also tweeted something that was very interesting. He said: “Where is the fake whistle-blower?” That’s important, because the whistle-blower’s
attorneys have sent a letter to the White House saying that he needs to cease and desist,
talking about the president — the whistle-blower’s anonymity, talking about the president — the
whistle-blower’s identity. And, essentially, the president is saying,
I’m not going to stop doing this. I want to know who this whistle-blower is. JUDY WOODRUFF: And just quickly, Yamiche,
what do we look for from tomorrow’s impeachment hearing? YAMICHE ALCINDOR: Tomorrow, we’re going to
have a second public hearing. We’re going to be hearing from the former
Ukrainian ambassador. She was the ambassador to the Ukraine for
the U.S. Her name is Marie Yovanovitch. I want to walk through some of who she is. She has 33 years of service as a Foreign Service
officer. She has also been nominated by both the Republican
and Democratic administrations. Democrats are going to be making the case
that she was the first casualty when it comes to President Trump’s alleged scheme to pressure
Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden. So they’re going to be making the case that
she’s not a victim, per se — they have stopped using that term — but that she is someone
that should be sympathetic to the American people. I have heard and aides have told me that she
cried during her deposition, so tomorrow might be an emotional day. We should also be looking forward to the deposition
of David Holmes. He is the supposed — he is reportedly the
aide who overheard Gordon Sondland, the E.U. ambassador, the European Union ambassador,
speaking to President Trump about wanting an investigation into the Bidens. So it’s going to be really interesting to
watch what comes out of the deposition, but also what comes out of the public hearings. JUDY WOODRUFF: Serious business. Yamiche Alcindor, reporting from the White
House, thank you. And please join us tomorrow morning starting
at 9:00 a.m. Eastern for our live special coverage of that
second public impeachment hearing. In the day’s other news: A gunman killed two
students and wounded three at a Southern California high school, and then shot himself. It happened at Saugus High School in Santa
Clarita, outside Los Angeles. Investigators said the suspect was also a
student, who had just turned 16 today. CAPT. KENT WEGENER, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s
Department: Detectives have reviewed the video at the scene, which clearly show the subject
in the quad withdraw a handgun from his backpack, shoot and wound five people, and then shoot
himself in the head. There are no other subjects who are outstanding
as part of this incident or who took part in this assault. JUDY WOODRUFF: The alleged shooter was in
grave condition this evening. Officials said they are working to piece together
a motive. In the Middle East, a cease-fire ended two
days of Israeli airstrikes and rocket attacks by Islamic Jihad, the Palestinian militants
backed by Iran. With the calm came mourning in Gaza, where
hundreds attended the funeral of eight family members killed in a single airstrike. In all, 34 Palestinians died during the fighting. Israel triggered the exchange by killing the
group’s top Gaza commander. And in Iraq, new bloodshed in Baghdad. Security forces shot and killed four more
anti-government protesters and wounded more than 60 today. Demonstrators fled from live fire and tear
gas and carried the wounded away. But they also called for a million people
to turn out tomorrow. At least 320 people have been killed in Iraq
since the protests broke out last month. Protesters in Hong Kong paralyzed the city
for a fourth straight day. Hundreds marched along the central business
area, using emptied trash bins to cut off traffic. Meanwhile, students built barricades. Police said those at Chinese University of
Hong Kong are — quote — “a step closer to terrorism.” JOHN TSE CHUN-CHUNG, Hong Kong Police: The
school has been used as a weapon factory and an arsenal with all kinds of offensive weapons,
like bows and arrows and catapults. It is also evident that it has become a manufacturing
base for petrol bombs. JUDY WOODRUFF: Chinese President’s Xi Jinping
called today for severely punishing those he termed violent criminals. Back in this country, President Trump asked
the U.S. Supreme Court today to block a subpoena for his income tax returns. State prosecutors in New York are seeking
the returns from the president’s accountants. Today’s filing asks the high court to decide
the case by next June. A State Department report says Trump administration
officials removed an Iran expert from her post over her Iranian background and her work
in the Obama administration. The department’s inspector general says Brian
Hook, who is the special representative on Iran, made the reassignment. Hook says that he didn’t consider any improper
factors. Kentucky’s Republican Governor Matt Bevin
conceded defeat today to his Democratic opponent. It came after officials double-checked last
week’s election tallies. Bevin still trailed Attorney General Andy
Beshear by more than 5,000 votes, and he said today he would accept the result. GOV. MATT BEVIN (R-KY): We have already been working,
our team with his team. Conversations have been had. And we will continue to, and I think we should
continue to, expect to have a smooth transition. I wish Attorney General Beshear well as he
transitions to his next role in this state. It’s a big responsibility. JUDY WOODRUFF: Republicans won the other statewide
races in Kentucky, but Bevin faced the fallout from various controversies that he had triggered. Former President Jimmy Carter is said to be
recovering well after having surgery to relieve pressure from bleeding in his skull. His family minister says the 95-year-old Carter
was up and walking at an Atlanta hospital yesterday, one day after the procedure. There is no word yet on when he will be released. On Wall Street today, not much change either
way. The Dow Jones industrial average lost one
point to close below 27782. The Nasdaq fell three points, and the S&P
500 added two. And scientists at the University of Washington
want to hear from old dogs out there, 10,000 of them. They need data for the Dog Aging Project,
the largest ever study of its kind. The results could shed new light on how dogs,
and ultimately humans, grow old. Owners can nominate their pets online. Still to come on the “NewsHour”: white nationalism
in the White House — a top presidential adviser’s ties to a hateful ideology; on the ground
in Afghanistan, where a resurgent Taliban is fighting for control; the threat of superbugs,
infectious bacteria immune to antibiotics; and much more. The
Southern Poverty Law Center has made public excerpts of e-mails sent by White House senior
adviser Stephen Miller, who is a key figure shaping immigration policy for President Trump. The e-mail messages from 2015 and 2016 show
Miller’s support of white nationalist Web sites and ideologies. Reporter Jean Guerrero with the San Diego
public media station KPBS is writing a book on Stephen Miller. And she joins me now to talk about what these
e-mails say and the light they appear to shed on his thinking, as he exerts influence on
the president’s approach to immigration. Jean Guerrero, welcome back to the “NewsHour.” JEAN GUERRERO, KPBS: Great to be here. JUDY WOODRUFF: So, tell us, first of all,
these e-mails were an exchange between Stephen Miller and whom? JEAN GUERRERO: They were exchanges between
Stephen Miller and Breitbart. That’s about 900 of the e-mails, and they
were sent when he was working for Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions and while he was on
the Trump campaign. And, essentially, what happened is, there
was a Breitbart editor named Katie McHugh who was fired in 2017. She has since renounced the far-right movement,
and she decided that she was going to take these e-mails and share them with the Southern
Poverty Law Center to expose the white nationalism that she says is affecting or influencing
the Trump administration in its formation of immigration policies. JUDY WOODRUFF: And just for those who might
not know, Breitbart is a far-right news Web site, and that’s where she worked until she
was fired, we understand, a couple of years ago. So, go — tell us what is in — what’s the
content of these e-mails? They were exchanging their thoughts, their
ideas on what Breitbart should be covering. I know that’s part of it. JEAN GUERRERO: Exactly. So, McHugh had been introduced to Miller as
somebody who was going to be influencing the direction of her reporting and the reporting
of other editors at Breitbart. So he was providing materials, often from
white supremacist Web sites, white nationalist literature, and encouraging them to draw from
it in their coverage, in their stories. What I found to be the most telling from reviewing
some of these e-mails is that, at one point, Stephen Miller recommends that they do a story
about this book called “Camp of the Saints.” It’s an incredibly racist book that depicts
the end of the white world — that’s how they put it, the — quote — “end of the white
world” — as the result of an invasion of refugees. And it’s just — it’s filled with extremely
degrading descriptions of migrants. And just to give an example of the kind of
rhetoric it includes, this quote: “kinky-haired, swarthy-skinned, long-despised phantoms, all
the teeming ants toiling for the white man’s comfort.” So, just these descriptions of migrants that
are very degrading fill the book. And what happened was, Julia Hahn — he encouraged
Breitbart editors to do a story showing parallels between the book and real life. So, Julia Hahn, who was an editor there as
well and who is now a special assistant to the president, did a story saying that the
book was prophetic and that it showed what was going to happen at the border, what was
happening at the border, and that potentially immigration was going to lead to the doom
of society. After that, Steve Bannon, who was then a Breitbart
executive and who worked for Trump as chief strategist after that, he also started referencing
the book repeatedly after Stephen Miller recommended it to Breitbart. And he said that it described the — quote
— “invasion at the border,” that, basically, the book had been prophetic, and that what
— the doom described in the book was going to be happening now in the United States. JUDY WOODRUFF: So the White House — and I
want to ask you about the effect this has had on immigration policy — but the White
House is saying, but, wait a minute, this comes from the Southern Poverty Law Center,
which they say is a left-leaning organization that they know already opposes them. And so they’re basically saying this material
is suspect. JEAN GUERRERO: Exactly. They have not explicitly denied the content
of the e-mails, but they have said that the Southern Poverty Law Center is a — they have
called it a left-wing smear organization. What the center is and has been doing for
several years is exposing hate groups and trying to shed light on white supremacists
and white nationalist groups. But, yes, the White House is essentially saying
that the organization is a smear organization, and that they are — their reporting and analysis
is not to be taken seriously. JUDY WOODRUFF: Jean Guerrero, as we said,
you’re writing a book on Stephen Miller. How does what you see in these e-mail changes,
how does that connect to what the administration’s policies have been towards immigrants, towards
refugees, and any of the policies Stephen Miller has had a hand in? JEAN GUERRERO: Well, what these e-mails show
is some of the white nationalism that’s informing the formation of these policies. What’s interesting is — so, Stephen Miller
is the architect of the Trump administration’s border and immigration policies. And President Trump has repeatedly said that
he’s focused on cutting off illegal immigration, that he wants to go after criminals, after
drug traffickers, after rapists. But what we have actually seen over the course
of the past — over the course of his presidency is that they have limited legal immigration. They have gone after refugees, they have gone
after asylum seekers, largely from non-white countries. And so what the e-mails show and indicate
is some of the white nationalist ideologies that may have gone into informing the formation
of those policies, which largely echo some of the groups that Stephen Miller was drawing
from in — that he was communicating with and sharing with to Breitbart. JUDY WOODRUFF: Well, Jean Guerrero doing a
lot of reporting on this. And I know there are, as you said, a lot of
e-mails out there to examine. I know that people will want to look at the
e-mails themselves. I know they’re posted on the Southern Poverty
Law Center site. Thank you very much. We appreciate it. JEAN GUERRERO: Thank you. JUDY WOODRUFF: Now to Afghanistan and our
exclusive look behind Taliban lines. The U.S. has been fighting there since the
9/11 attacks by al-Qaida. They were hosted in Afghanistan by the Taliban,
a movement of radical militant Islamic extremists that ruled with a harsh interpretation of
Islam. A U.S.-led coalition ousted them in 2001,
but the Taliban quickly formed into an insurgent group, fighting the American military and
democratic Afghan government that replaced them. Now, 18 years later, fighting there rages
more violently than ever. And some are drawing attention to the tactics
used in the fight against the Taliban. Our special correspondent Jane Ferguson recently
met members of the Taliban in Wardak province, near the capital, Kabul, to report, with their
constant presence on the shadow war that rages largely out of view. JANE FERGUSON: These are the faces of America’s
most persistent enemy. U.S. soldiers have been battling the Taliban
for nearly two decades in the nation’s longest war. Leading up to 9/11, the Taliban ruled over
most of Afghanistan, giving refuge to al-Qaida and its training camps. American troops were sent to destroy the Taliban. Yet, 18 years later, their fighters roam freely
across more of this country than at any point since 2001, and these commanders say they
are close to victory. MOTMAEEN, Taliban Commander (through translator):
I am fully confident that America is being defeated and will be defeated. And they will be humiliated when they leave. JANE FERGUSON: They talk with us face to face
out in the open, even as, nearby, we hear the sound of their fighters clashing with
Afghan government forces. After months of serious negotiations, Taliban
leaders and the Trump White House came close to doing a deal in September that would have
seen some of the 13,000 American soldiers withdraw from Afghanistan, in exchange for
peace talks between the Taliban and the U.S.-backed Afghan government. It fell through at the last minute, and the
group continues to fight Afghan forces and their American advisers every day, but they
know President Trump still wants America out of this war. MAN (through translator): Yes, we have won. They are definitely leaving, whether by force
of through negotiations. JANE FERGUSON: Our journey to meet with the
Taliban began at sunrise, traveling far outside the capital, Kabul, to Wardak province. It’s so dangerous for Westerners in these
regions now, the only way I can travel safely is by disguising myself as an Afghan woman,
in a full burka to cover my face and completely shroud my body. These roads show the scars of conflict, smashed
by explosions. Each crater marks the spot of an IED. Government forces are hunkered down in small
outposts on one side of the road. On the other, the Taliban occupy everything. So, our escorts came and met us, and they
are in a motorcycle leading our car away off the main road and into the mountainous area
here. This is one of the most violent parts of the
country. Just as we have arrived here, where we are
going to be interviewing the Taliban commander, ironically, we are very close to government
positions, and gun battles can be heard in the distance. Despite the Taliban’s confidence, this war
is far from over. In fact, it is more brutal than ever. We came to find out what’s happening to the
people here. Village elders greeted us. Their communities are trapped between government
forces and the Taliban, and they pay a heavy price for it. Airstrikes in Afghanistan, largely by the
U.S. military, are the most intense since nearly a decade ago, when 100,000 American
troops were in the country as part of a surge ordered by President Obama. These Afghans are suffering under the results. We visited several villages, all of them partially
destroyed by the war from above. But it’s not the planes that people here fear
the most. MAYIN, Afghanistan (through translator): Afghan
Special Forces came in the night. They blew off the door and said we were Taliban
and they would kill us. JANE FERGUSON: This is an increasingly covert
war, mostly fought by Afghan and American Special Forces against the Taliban, with little
access for the outside world to see what’s going on. Few have had a chance to tell their story. MAYIN (through translator): They said I was
a liar. And I said, “No, I am telling you the truth.” Then they beat me. It was a terrible moment. They blindfolded me and put me on the ground
over there. They set fire to my car and motorcycle, like
this one here, see? This is not a Taliban bike. There was another guy with them, and he was
asking me questions in English. Then they threw me in this room and left. JANE FERGUSON: He was lucky. Some of these night raids are conducted by
Afghan Special Forces connected to the country’s intelligence agency, backed by the CIA. Human Rights Watch says these forces, in their
hunt for the Taliban, are unlawfully executing people. In many cases, innocent civilians are also
killed because of mistaken identity, poor intelligence or even political rivalries in
the community. In a report released last month, the U.S.-based
organization says: “These troops include Afghan strike forces who have been responsible for
extrajudicial executions and enforced disappearances, indiscriminate airstrikes, attacks on medical
facilities, and other violations of international humanitarian law or the laws of war. They largely have been recruited, trained,
equipped, and overseen by the CIA. They often have U.S. Special Forces personnel
deployed alongside them during kill-or-capture operations.” Because these forces come under intelligence,
rather than the military, getting answers on alleged abuses is difficult. KATE CLARK, Afghanistan Analysts Network:
The CIA are absolutely unaccountable. You or I can’t go and see them. Afghans can’t go and see them. JANE FERGUSON: Kate Clark runs the Afghan
Analysts Network, which monitors the war here closely. KATE CLARK: So, in terms of accountability,
they are unaccountable in this country. And considering the fact that they seem to
be breaking the Geneva Conventions on a regular basis, that is really concerning. And it’s not just journalists saying that
or Afghan families. It’s also the U.N. JANE FERGUSON: The CIA-linked Afghan Special
Forces are often referred to as strike forces. They are technically part of the country’s
National Defense and Security Forces, called NDSF, but their chain of command is not clear. Even Afghan government officials appear to
know very little about them. How many are there? Who funds them? Who are they? FEROZ BASHARI, Afghan Government Spokesperson:
Well, those small number of issues are not policy-level issues. I don’t have the information. But, in general, we talk about the… JANE FERGUSON: Can you tell us anything about
them? FEROZ BASHARI: Well, for the moment, I don’t
have any information. I don’t know about that particular one, but
I assure you that any force that operates in Afghanistan operates under Afghanistan’s
laws. JANE FERGUSON: So who do they answer to? FEROZ BASHARI: Well, if they work for NDSF,
they work for NDSF. JANE FERGUSON: I’m talking about the special
forces linked to your intelligence services. Who is their boss? FEROZ BASHARI: Well, I have to ask. JANE FERGUSON: These strike forces have been
increasing their night raids and airstrikes since 2017. And places like Wardak province, a Taliban
stronghold, are on the front line of this war. As America, the Afghan government and the
Taliban all scramble for stronger positions in any future peace negotiations. Violence has intensified, making Afghanistan
the deadliest conflict on Earth right now, according to the U.N., with civilian casualties
in record numbers, caught between the U.S.-backed Afghan military and the Taliban. On the ground, our Taliban escorts are fearful
of attracting attention from above. They are telling us now that we need to keep
moving. We can’t spend too long in any village or
any house, because these areas are being constantly surveyed by drones. And any kind of gathering of people for any
period of time could attract an airstrike. In the next village, even more gun battles
can be heard in the distance. Shir Hasan came out to speak with us. He can barely get the words out. Last winter, he tells us, an Afghan special
forces team arrived here and came to his house. SHIR HASAN, Afghanistan (through translator):
I told them: “We are not Taliban. Don’t do this to us.” JANE FERGUSON: Hasan says the soldiers took
his two nephews away, one of them a teenage boy. SHIR HASAN (through translator): After some
minutes, I heard the sound of bullets fired. Their father here asked: “Why did you kill
my children?” One of them was so small. JANE FERGUSON: Another neighbor, an elderly
man, was also executed, we are told. SHIR HASAN (through translator): One American
was standing here at the door. I saw him myself. I don’t know if the Americans shot them or
the others did. There were a lot of them. When the shooting happened, my brother shouted:
“They killed my little children.” JANE FERGUSON: Hasan says, although the Taliban
control these areas, no one from the village is a member of the insurgency. And when he went to the local governor to
complain, he was told the killings were a mistake, and nothing could be done. The CIA responded to a request for comment
by the “NewsHour” on alleged abuses, stating: “We neither condone nor would knowingly participate
in illegal activities, and we continually work with our foreign partners to promote
adherence to the law. “The U.S. government routinely reviews such
serious allegations to determine their validity. Although Human Rights Watch didn’t provide
the CIA time to study the particular allegations in this report, without confirming or denying
any particular role in government of Afghanistan counterterrorism operations, we can say with
some confidence that many, if not all, of the claims leveled against Afghan forces are
likely false or exaggerated.” January to July of this year marked the first
time in this long conflict that U.S. and Afghan government forces have killed and injured
more civilians than the Taliban, according to the U.N. Yet, because of their brutal tactics, the
Taliban are still killing and maiming thousands, like in this September attack in Kabul, when
a Taliban member detonated a car bomb, killing both an American and a Romanian soldier and
eight Afghan civilians in the street. We challenged their commander on this. Why does the Taliban target areas where civilians
are in the neighborhood? MAN (through translator): The martyrs try
to hit their targets and not harm civilians. But it happens. There is a clear order from our senior leaders
not to harm any civilians. JANE FERGUSON: The people living in these
villages have nothing but mud walls between them and the war outside. Reduced to labels like Taliban supporters
or pro-government, those in Afghanistan’s hidden battlegrounds fight their own personal
battles to survive every day, sometimes against anonymous, shadowy killers. America’s longest war is theirs too. For the “PBS NewsHour,” I’m Jane Ferguson
in Wardak, Afghanistan. JUDY WOODRUFF: A new report out from the U.S.
Centers for Disease Control highlights that we are still losing the battle against so-called
superbugs, bacteria that are resistant to nearly all the antibiotics. As William Brangham tells us, the scope of
the problem is bigger than previously estimated. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: The CDC’s new report shows
that, while overall deaths from these superbugs are decreasing, new infections are rising. Federal health officials say it shows how
far we still have to go. These superbugs exist largely because of the
overuse and misuse of antibiotics, which allows the targeted bacteria to develop defenses
against them, which makes those lifesaving drugs less and less effective. According to the CDC, about 35,000 people
die every year from these infections. The majority of these deaths are from people
getting infected in hospitals and other health care settings. More than 2.8 million new infections occur
every year. That’s about one new infection every 11 seconds. For more on all this, I’m joined now by Arjun
Srinivasan, who works on infection control at the CDC and helped put together this report. Dr. Srinivasan, thank you very much for being
here. Before we get into some of the granular details
of this report, I wonder if we could talk about the broader scope of this problem. I mean, I think, by any public health measure,
almost three million infections every year is a lot of infections. DR. ARJUN SRINIVASAN, Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention: Yes. And thanks for having me, William. It is. It’s a huge number. It’s a staggering burden. And that burden is really why we have been
calling attention to this problem for several years. The burden is larger than we thought it was. We knew that our report in 2013 was a conservative
estimate. We recognized it was likely an underestimate. It was the best information we had at the
time, and now we have better information, and we have put out a new number. And that number really continues to show that
this is a significant problem. It’s a massive problem. It’s a threat to patients in hospitals. It’s a threat to people in the community. It is a serious threat that we have to address. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: Some of these infections,
we know, are life-threatening. Some of them are not. Can you just describe, what kinds of infections
are we talking about? DR. ARJUN SRINIVASAN: These antibiotic-resistant
infections, as you mentioned, they run the full gamut of different types of etiologies,
of different types of infections that they cause. And they do range in severity. Some of them cause skin infections that may
be readily treatable by draining the infection and a short course of antibiotics. Some of them cause very serious infections,
life-threatening infections. And, as you mentioned, we know that roughly
35,000 people every year don’t survive one of these infections. So it’s a huge gamut. But for each individual person, this is a
serious occurrence, right? This is pain, it’s suffering. So it’s important that we not underestimate
or that we trivialize any one of these 2.8 million infections. For the person who gets it, it’s a serious
infection. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: One thing that obviously
stands out is the declining number of deaths. It’s an 18 percent overall reduction, nearly
30 percent in hospitals alone. I think that is straight-up good news. What is driving that decline? DR. ARJUN SRINIVASAN: Those declines are absolutely
good news. It is really encouraging. And for some people who have seen this report,
it a little bit flies in the face of what we have come to expect, what conventional
wisdom is with antibiotic resistance. There was a lot of suspicion out there, and
people who said, once resistance begins to develop, there’s just nothing you can do,
you will never see it go back down. This report shows that you can, in fact, put
the genie back in the bottle to a certain extent. We’re seeing the number of deaths have gone
down. The number of infections with many of these
important pathogens, especially in health care, has gone down. What’s driving that? We really do think it’s the hard work of people,
especially in hospitals, where we have seen the biggest decreases. It’s the day-in and day-out work of people
paying attention to cleaning their hands, wearing gowns and gloves when it’s necessary
to care for these patients, working to improve antibiotic use. Some of these things are — seem relatively
simple. None of them are easy to do every day taking
care of every single patient. But that hard work is paying off, and we really
want to acknowledge the work that people are doing and encourage them to keep at it. Those efforts, your efforts are making a difference. Keep it up. It’s saving lives. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: You mentioned this issue
of better antibiotic use. This obviously dovetails with one of the reasons
why these superbugs emerged in the first place. For individuals who might be listening out
there, what would you tell them about best practices for themselves, for their family,
for their communities? DR. ARJUN SRINIVASAN: You know, antibiotics are
lifesaving medications. They improve the quality of life. And when you have an infection that needs
an antibiotic, you definitely need an antibiotic. And that’s why we’re here, right? We want those antibiotics to be available
and effective when we need them. But we know too often in the United States,
both in hospitals and in outpatient settings, in doctor’s offices, we are prescribing antibiotics
when they’re not needed. And it’s really important for people to know
that, if you take an antibiotic when you don’t need one, you are exposing yourself to all
sorts of potential side effects from antibiotics. These are medications that have significant
side effects. When you need them, obviously, those side
effects are risks worth taking. But when you don’t need them, you are exposing
yourself to all of those side effects with no benefit. So, really, one of the key messages has been
and continues to be, don’t demand an antibiotic if your provider thinks you don’t need one. You don’t want an antibiotic if you don’t
need it. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: All right, Dr. Arjun Srinivasan
at the Centers for Disease Control, thank you very, very much. DR. ARJUN SRINIVASAN: Thank you so much. JUDY WOODRUFF: As older workers are making
up more and more of the labor force, employers are taking notice. Paul Solman has the story. It’s part of our Making Sense series Unfinished
Business. BRENDA PHILLIPS, Project Administrator, Trane:
So, I’m practicing to be retired, is what I tell people. PAUL SOLMAN: Sixty-six-year-old Brenda Phillips
still works as a project administrator at HVAC manufacturer Trane. But she’s no longer full-time. BRENDA PHILLIPS: I have taken up quilting,
and I have nine grandchildren. And I get asked to baby-sit a lot. PAUL SOLMAN: After almost 40 years on the
floor, Herbert Galbreath, at age 61, simply opted to hang it up. HERBERT GALBREATH, Production Leader, Trane:
Working on concrete for years, it causes a lot of joint problems. PAUL SOLMAN: But after two years, returned
as a supervisor. HERBERT GALBREATH: Retirement wasn’t really
what I thought it would be. And I’m a doer. What’s really important to me is to pass some
of the knowledge that I have on to the younger generation. I’m just one person. I can’t get everybody, but I can correct some
things. PAUL SOLMAN: Phillips and Galbreath are part
of My Encore, a program started a couple of years ago by Trane’s parent company, Ingersoll
Rand, says Timitra Hildebrand-Jones. TIMITRA HILDEBRAND-JONES, Director of Diversity
and Inclusion, Ingersoll Rand: We quickly realized that the majority of our employee
population was over the age 50, and many of them very close to retirement. And as we looked at that population, we started
to immediately get concerned about all of the tribal knowledge that we could potentially
lose. PAUL SOLMAN: And thus Trane’s phased retirement
and post-retirement work programs, to leverage worker expertise and commitment. RUTH FINKELSTEIN, Hunter College: This is
a gallery of age-smart employers. PAUL SOLMAN: Hunter College’s Ruth Finkelstein
says it’s happening elsewhere too. RUTH FINKELSTEIN: This is a school where they
pair older and younger teachers together. And this is the Urban Health Plan, that has
amazingly flexible policies. PAUL SOLMAN: The main reason firms have begun
to accommodate? They have little choice. The fastest growing segment of the labor force
is workers 55 or older. And admit it, says Finkelstein: RUTH FINKELSTEIN: Do you want the nurse who
is, you know, dealing with her first intravenous tube? No, you want the one who can do it with her
eyes closed. PAUL SOLMAN: And retention adjustments aren’t
just to keep good professionals. The savvy shortage is everywhere. RUTH FINKELSTEIN: Work force shortages in
skilled trades, work force shortages in fine garment work, work force shortages in plumbing
and heating and skilled construction. PAUL SOLMAN: Lee Spring, in fact, a century-old
manufacturing firm in Brooklyn. CEO Steve Kempf: STEVE KEMPF, CEO, Lee Spring: We do everything
to keep our older workers, because they’re — A, they’re so skilled, and, B, we don’t
have the people to fill in behind them. And we have invested 10, 15, 20, 30 years,
some of them, in their skill set. And we want to keep those as long as we can. PAUL SOLMAN: So what do you do to keep an
older worker like me? I’m 75. OK? STEVE KEMPF: Seventy-five. So we have got several people your age here. Generally, the most common thing we will do
is give them the ability to work a shorter workweek. And, usually, it also eases their way out,
so that we learn to get their job done with them there only two or three days a week. Makes it easier when they fully leave a few
years later. So, I’m not trying to be some great saint. I’m just doing what’s best for the company. PAUL SOLMAN: By keeping the likes of machinist
Mikhail Rapoport, on the job for 40 years, and still into it. How long do you think you will continue to
work? MIKHAIL RAPOPORT, Machinist, Lee Spring: When
my wife say enough is enough, let’s go to Florida, I go. PAUL SOLMAN: But she hasn’t said that yet? MIKHAIL RAPOPORT: No, now she tell to me,
working, working. (LAUGHTER) MIKHAIL RAPOPORT: She don’t want to see me
all day. PAUL SOLMAN: Fifty-nine-year-old Robert Metolli
worked the factory floor for years. But when he hurt his back, the company put
him behind a desk. ROBERT METOLLI, Engineering Team, Lee Spring:
They suggested probably I might be helpful in the office, bringing the experience that
I had on coiling, as well as helping me not lifting heavy wire or working with heavy machines. PAUL SOLMAN: But Lee Spring doesn’t hire seniors,
does it? STEVE KEMPF: Five of our workers who are in
their 70s, we hired them, all five of those people, in their late 50s. So we’re hiring somebody who’s 59 years old
to go into the factory. And we have gotten 15 years out of that person. And, generally, at that point, they’re also
not looking to jump around and look for a better place. PAUL SOLMAN: Accounting firm PKF O’Connor
Davies, where almost 40 percent of the work force is past 50, does the same, recruiting
senior partners from larger firms. Chief human resources officer Dawn Perri: DAWN PERRI, Chief Human Resources, PKF O’Connor
Davies: If somebody has to retire due to a mandatory practice that a firm has in place,
we wind up getting people that have great experience, who want to work, who are motivated,
who can help our less experienced individuals. PAUL SOLMAN: Al Fiore was a partner at accounting
giant KPMG. In his 70s, he brought his Rolodex and executive
experience to PKF O’Connor Davies. ALFRED FIORE, Principal, PKF O’Connor Davies:
I still act as a mentor to some of the members on the executive committee who’ve been here
a number of years, where my perspective is very beneficial. You feel like you’re making a contribution. PAUL SOLMAN: The company’s contribution, a
flexible schedule. ALFRED FIORE: I think what’s important in
staying involved is being able to work when you want to work. ANDREW CAPLIN, New York University: It’s clear
that older workers particularly value having some flexibility to take time off, maybe regularly,
but maybe a little bit as they want. So, flexibility matters. PAUL SOLMAN: So much so, according to New
York University economist Andrew Caplin’s research, that fully 60 percent of retirees
say they’d go back to work if it were flexible. But, for so many, it just isn’t. ANDREW CAPLIN: That is, the options they’re
looking for simply don’t exist. So if somebody stepped out of the work force
because they felt a little burned out, said, I’m taking a temporary time-out, and I think
I will step back a little while later, I wonder how many of them found that that’s a permanent
time-out? PAUL SOLMAN: Do you think there’s a huge untapped
pool of productivity… ANDREW CAPLIN: Yes. PAUL SOLMAN: … that is on the sidelines? ANDREW CAPLIN: Yes. PAUL SOLMAN: Well, Al Fiore is still working,
but thanks to his flexible schedule. ALFRED FIORE: I come in most days of the week. But if I need something — to be able to do
something else, I do that. PAUL SOLMAN: Back at Trane, does Brenda Phillips
miss working full-time? BRENDA PHILLIPS: No. (LAUGHTER) BRENDA PHILLIPS: Did I say that fast enough? (LAUGHTER) PAUL SOLMAN: But she likes working part-time,
and needs to. BRENDA PHILLIPS: My husband had a major stroke,
and he’s disabled, so I’m the breadwinner. So I have a lot of responsibility on my shoulders. PAUL SOLMAN: Returning to work gave retiree
Herbert Galbreath financial stability. HERBERT GALBREATH: Get out of debt, and pay
bills off, and that opened the door for other things. I want to travel out West for three weeks
in a row, you know, things like that. PAUL SOLMAN: And as the proportion of older
workers continues to grow, says economist Caplin: ANDREW CAPLIN: We’re going to have to face
this issue that many places will want to keep employing people who would need a time-out
now. So, the most imaginative will find their individual
solutions. PAUL SOLMAN: As some places now have. For the “PBS NewsHour,” this is Paul Solman
in New York. JUDY WOODRUFF: The word elite increasingly
has a negative connotation. It’s often used as a political attack. Amna Nawaz sits down with author Joel Stein,
whose new book, “In Defense of Elitism,” explores how we view privilege. AMNA NAWAZ: Joel Stein, welcome to the “NewsHour.” JOEL STEIN, Author, “In Defense of Elitism”:
Amna, thank you for having me. It’s the elitist’s dream. To be on the “PBS NewsHour”? This as good as it gets. AMNA NAWAZ: Let me start with the title of
the book. JOEL STEIN: Oh, yes. AMNA NAWAZ: “In Defense of Elitism.” The subhead is “Why I’m Better Than You and
You’re Better Than Someone Who Didn’t Buy This Book.” Why does elitism need a defense right now? JOEL STEIN: Nobody is admitting they’re elite. Everyone hates the elite right now. And somebody has to stick up for the intellectual
elite in this country, before we drive this country into the ground. Everybody says that they can just operate
from their gut and they know more than the generals. And I just want to restore some kind of expertise
and some value and appreciation for education. AMNA NAWAZ: What does it mean to be elite
right now? JOEL STEIN: So, I don’t mean rich. Let me be clear about that from the beginning. Many members of the elite are journalists,
or they are in nongovernmental organizations, or they’re in academia. We’re talking about people who have influence
and power. But what I learned in writing this book is,
we’re now in this fight between these two groups of elite. This guy Vilfredo Pareto in 1900s, this Italian
economist, fascist, came up with this idea of the circulation of the elites, that there’s
always a battle between two people, and somebody always rules. And I feel like right now we’re in a battle
between our people, the intellectual and elite, the people watching this, and the boat elites,
which is a term I came up with after watching Donald Trump make this speech last year in
Minneapolis, where, after railing against the elites for so long during the campaign,
he said, well, we should be the elites. Like, we have bigger houses and we have boats. And I thought, oh, those are the people that
we’re against, the people who care about money more than ideas, the boat elite. AMNA NAWAZ: I should mention the book actually
begins with the election of Donald Trump, right? JOEL STEIN: Yes. AMNA NAWAZ: That’s where this whole sort of
exploration of the idea of elitism begins for you. You write in the book: “The populist revolution
succeeded tonight for the same reason it did nearly two centuries ago. The main reason Trump won wasn’t economic
anxiety, wasn’t sexism, wasn’t racism. It was that he was anti-elite.” So explain — again, I want to get two definitions
on this. JOEL STEIN: Yes. AMNA NAWAZ: He’s an Ivy League grad. He’s a millionaire or billionaire. And he has incredible power and privilege. JOEL STEIN: Yes. AMNA NAWAZ: Is that what it means to be elite. Why is he anti-elite? When did it become a bad word? JOEL STEIN: Well, he doesn’t have any respect
for anyone who’s got any kind of expertise or education. Like, he knows more than the generals. He operates from his gut. He just says he instinctually knows what’s
right. So that’s the kind of anti-elitist, populist
sentiment that we’re talking about. AMNA NAWAZ: So, you head out on a pilgrimage. You leave your home in Los Angeles. JOEL STEIN: Yes. AMNA NAWAZ: You go to a town called Miami,
Texas. JOEL STEIN: And you pronounced it right for
a good reason. AMNA NAWAZ: I did. I have been there myself. I have reported on the communities there. And I went there because, in this Panhandle
town, they’re known as having — being the county in the 2016 election that had the highest
level of support for Donald Trump. When you had a conversation with them about
elitism, what did they tell you? JOEL STEIN: You’re the only person I can talk
to, other than the people there, about this town, because you’re the only one I know who
has been there. (LAUGHTER) JOEL STEIN: It was really interesting. I went to Miami, not knowing that you were
also going there, thinking that I would teach them a lot, and they would teach me a little
bit that I could, like, stitch on a doily and keep in my kitchen. But, instead, I don’t know about you, but
I feel like I learned a lot from them, and they were so different than what I expected. They were very white, and they were very Christian. But they were also really well-educated and
they knew more about my life than I knew about theirs, both from traveling and watching television. And their anger about what is going on was
different from what I thought it would be. AMNA NAWAZ: What did you think it was going
to be, and how is it different? JOEL STEIN: I just thought it would be racist. And that’s the first thing they asked me. They were like, you think we’re going to be
racist, don’t you? Like, three people asked me that, which is
weird. And I found out that what they’re upset about
is, they feel really discriminated against. These are the people that, if you asked, are
Christians discriminated against more than black people, they will say yes. And I think that’s — it took me a while to
figure it out. But I think people feel acceleration and they
don’t feel speed. So what they have noticed is that white Christians
do have less power than they did 10, 20, 30 years ago. And they’re panicked about that kind of change. AMNA NAWAZ: I got to ask you, a lot of the
book is very tongue in cheek, right? You make fun of yourself in the book, too. But there are times when you make fun of the
people you’re interacting with too. You’re in Miami. You’re describing the home of someone you’re
staying with there as a museum to the 1950s. You make fun of the fact that they have a
tube television, not a flat-screen TV, that they’re playing “Andy Griffith” on the TV
in the local restaurant. Isn’t that the kind of elitism that they would
complain about? JOEL STEIN: Oh, yes. And they did to me. (LAUGHTER) JOEL STEIN: And I think they had a point. I think elites have a real problem with smugness. I think all of my friends who think, if they
could just go to Miami, Texas, and tell people that they’re voting against their own interests,
and explain to them why Medicare for all is great for them, that they would — they would
just change their minds, as if they’re like the unenlightened masses. And that’s not what’s going on at all. These people are voting for what they want
for the country. I think it’s a dangerous vision they have,
in my opinion, but it’s not ignorant. AMNA NAWAZ: So you set off on this journey. You meet with a number of different people. I will list off a few of them too. Tucker Carlson is profiled in the book. There’s Scott Adams, the man behind the “Dilbert”
cartoon, as well. JOEL STEIN: Yes, a big Trump supporter. AMNA NAWAZ: Eric Garcetti, the Los Angeles
mayor, as well. You bring all these people together to have
conversations about elitism. At the end of the day, what is it that you
take away? JOEL STEIN: You know, I wrote the book hopefully
in a funny way, partly because I want to draw attention to how ridiculous the situation
we’re in is. Like, there’s so many angry books about politics
right now. And I just wanted to point out that, like,
when I was growing up, if you told me there was going to be a populist revolution in America,
I would have thought, oh, there was an economic collapse or there was a war or something horrible
had happened. And, instead, things are going pretty well,
despite what people may tell you about corruption and the economy. Like, things are pretty good. And people flipped out. And I want people just to tone it down before
we lose democracy. AMNA NAWAZ: Joel Stein. The book is “In Defense of Elitism.” Thanks for being here. JUDY WOODRUFF: Tonight’s Brief But Spectacular
features artist Delano Dunn. His work explore questions of racial identity. DELANO DUNN, Artist: I grew up in Los Angeles,
California, so South Central L.A., which is a block of about 24 neighborhoods. When I was a young kid, the neighborhood was
fantastic. You know, I would play outside on the streets
with most of my friends. But, as I got older, got into my teens, things
got rough. The riots happened. The gang wars sort of sparked, so it became
a neighborhood where you couldn’t walk down the street. It became very rough. Everything about the neighborhood that I grew
up in, the friends that I had, the experiences of being a black student in a predominantly
white high school and elementary school, all of those things come into the work. My work is not happy work. It’s very difficult work. It’s very powerful work, I like to think. So I make stuff very colorful. I make it bright. I make it look like a piece of candy, so that
you want to come up and unwrap it. And when you do and you put it in your mouth,
it tastes like salt. As a kid, we didn’t talk much about the civil
rights movement in the house. I was more interested in space, in space exploration. As I got older, I started to realize really
what was probably more important to my life. PROTESTERS: Freedom, freedom, freedom. DELANO DUNN: And I started to want to have
a reconciliation. You’re taught in school that these two events
are happening not at the same time, even though they actually are. And the goal was to build a new history that
showed these two events happening concurrently, and these two groups of people working together
to develop a cohesive idea of the American dream. 1961 is significant because, in my research,
it was the first time I found these remarkable connections. So you have got Freedom Riders driving down
on May 4 to desegregate interstate travel. And the next day, one of the Mercury astronauts
goes up. I remember sitting in the library at the time
coming to that conclusion, and it just kind of blew my mind, that these things were happening
within hours and days of each other. Growing up and not really seeing any black
astronauts, to have this opportunity to make a world where you have African-Americans and
these astronauts working together, and blending the lines that maybe, you know, African-Americans
were part of these Mercury missions, made me kind of giddy, and I decided to go see
what I could do with it. I grew up in a family that was mostly women. I was raised by my mom, my aunt, and my grandmother. And I wanted to make work that talked about
the contribution that women have had in history, whether it be African-American civil rights
movement, whether it be the space race. My daughter’s name is Violet, and she’s 6. It’s a rough world out there, and particularly
for women and particularly for women of color. And so when I make work, I think a lot about
her. I make sure that I have images of women in
the work and that these women are not seen through the male gaze and that they’re depicted
in positions of power and strength. And that is the main impact of the work these
days, is her. My name is Delano Dunn. And this is my Brief But Spectacular take
on exploring the world through my art. JUDY WOODRUFF: And you can watch additional
Brief But Spectacular episodes on our Web site, PBS.org/NewsHour/Brief. It is hard to believe, but today marks three
years since our dear friend and colleague Gwen Ifill passed away. We think of her all the time. Her loss was especially felt by young journalists
in the “PBS NewsHour” Student Reporting Labs. Here are four graduates of that program who
went on to be Gwen Ifill Fellows at their local PBS stations. We asked them to write letters they wish they
could have shared with Gwen. JAYLAH MOORE-ROSS, Gwen Ifill Fellow, WETA:
Dear Gwen, through journalism, I have been able to connect with so many different people. And through the Gwen Ifill Fellowship, I got
to sit around the same table that you and your co-anchor, Judy Woodruff, sat every day
to report on the most influential stories. GWEN IFILL: We always talk about African-Americans,
people of color. I want to talk to you about white people. OK? ANGELINE ABRERA, Gwen Ifill Fellow, Houston
Public Media: Dear Gwen, I can honestly say this fellowship has been one of the greatest
experiences in my life thus far. Because of you, I feel so much more confident
in myself and what I believe I can accomplish. You taught me to embrace my differences and
to never let anyone degrade me based on my appearance. MARY WILLIAMS, Gwen Ifill Fellow, CET Public
Television: Dear Gwen, your legacy means so to me as an African-American woman. It shows me that it’s possible to be a part
of something bigger than myself. Seeing you on the news made me realize you
did it, so I can do it. You paved the way for me so I can pave the
way for others like me. MERCEDES EZEJI, Gwen Ifill Fellow, Austin
PBS: Dear Gwen, you probably had no idea that a fellowship would be created in your name
at the end of your career. I used to watch you all the time when I was
younger. You were a major inspiration in my decision
to become a journalist. JAYLAH MOORE-ROSS: And though I never got
to meet you, I feel connected to you. ANGELINE ABRERA: Thankfully, our society has
become much more inclusive. But there are still many areas where women
are not seen as competent. JAYLAH MOORE-ROSS: You have not only inspired
young girls, including myself, to go for what they love, despite the challenges. GWEN IFILL: … investigations in Little Rock
and in Washington involving… JAYLAH MOORE-ROSS: But you have opened up
so many doors for storytellers behind you. Your legacy lives on, and your smile remains
infectious, even to those who only witnessed your light on screen. GWEN IFILL: Have a little fun. ANGELINE ABRERA: Thank you, Gwen Ifill, for
being my greatest role model. JUDY WOODRUFF: And Gwen lives on through every
one of these remarkable young women. We thank them. And that’s the “NewsHour” for tonight. I’m Judy Woodruff. Join us at 9:00 a.m. Eastern tomorrow for our special live coverage
of the next public impeachment hearing. Thank you, and we’ll see you soon.

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