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Heritage Foundation
Heritage Foundation
Фонд «Наследие» (Heritage Foundation — эритэйдж фаундэйшн) — стратегический исследовательский институт США, который занимается широким спектром исследования международной политики. Имеет консервативную направленность. Основан в 1973 году. Директор — Эдвин ...

Фонд «Наследие» (Heritage Foundation — эритэйдж фаундэйшн) — стратегический исследовательский институт США, который занимается широким спектром исследования международной политики. Имеет консервативную направленность. Основан в 1973 году. Директор — Эдвин Фелнер (Ed Feulner).

Декларируемая идея института — построить статистическую модель общества и обеспечить доступ к ней широкой общественности. Фонд издаёт ряд аналитических исследований, из самых известных — ежегодный «Индекс экономической свободы», «Политические эксперты 2000», «Мандат на лидерство» (рекомендательные материалы для кандидатов в президенты США).

Кроме того, выдаются журнал «The Insider», разнообразные буклеты на 12-30 страниц («Backgrounder», «Executive Memorandum», «Executive Summary» и др.), Для газет — фельетоны (2-3 раза в неделю), организуются проблемные конференции. Вики


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17 января, 19:42

Why Obamacare's "20 Million" Number Is Fake

Submitted by Genevieve Wood via DailySignal.com, Liberals are notorious for caring about “groups” of people, but when it gets down to individual persons, not so much. You’re about to see this play out in spades as Democrats cry crocodile tears over the coming repeal of Obamacare. You hear it over and over again: “This will be catastrophic for the 20 million people who were previously uninsured but now have coverage! You can’t take away their health care!” First of all, no one is talking about doing that. Any repeal legislation will have a transition period for those who got coverage through Obamacare to move to new plans. And second, they will have more choices and better options. Win. Win. But liberals would rather focus on quantity, how many millions we’ve given something to, versus quality, what does that “gift” mean for individual people. The Obama administration claims 20 million more Americans today have health care due to Obamacare. The reality is that when you look at the actual net gains over the past two years since the program was fully implemented, the number is 14 million, and of that, 11.8 million (84 percent) were people given the “gift” of Medicaid. And new research shows that even fewer people will be left without insurance after the repeal of Obamacare. Numbers are still being crunched, but between statistics released by the Congressional Budget Office and one of the infamous architects of Obamacare, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Jonathan Gruber, it’s estimated that anywhere from 2 to 7 million people now on Medicaid would have qualified for the program even without Obamacare. That further discredits the administration’s claim of 20 million more Americans having health insurance because of Obamacare. Multiple studies have also shown that even those who are uninsured often have better outcomes than those with Medicaid. A University of Virginia study found that for eight different surgical procedures, Medicaid patients were more likely to die than privately insured or uninsured patients. They were also more likely to suffer complications. And it is important to note that this study focused on procedures done from 2003-2007, prior to the geniuses in Washington deciding it was a good idea to put even more people on the already overburdened Medicaid system. Additionally, despite what proponents of the law promised, there is little evidence to show that the use of emergency rooms, which have a higher level of medical errors, has decreased due to Obamacare. Then there is this reality: While Obamacare has handed out millions of new Medicaid cards, that does not mean the recipients now have quality health care. In fact, it doesn’t ensure they have health care at all. That’s because increasing numbers of doctors aren’t accepting Medicaid. As a Louisiana woman told The New York Times, “My Medicaid card is useless for me right now. It’s a useless piece of plastic. I can’t find an orthopedic surgeon or a pain management doctor who will accept Medicaid.” Keep that in mind every time liberal Democratic senators pull out the Kleenex boxes bemoaning the fact Republicans are the ones trying to take people’s health care away. Speaking of which, a much underreported fact of Obamacare is how many truly needy and disabled Americans are NOT getting the services they need because of the expansion of Medicaid for able-bodied adults (aka healthy) of prime working age, 19-54. So while the left talks about all the new people Obamacare is helping, it neglects to mention that over half a million disabled people, from those with developmental disabilities to traumatic brain injuries, are on waiting lists for care. And many of them are on waiting lists because Obamacare gives states more money to enroll able-bodied adults than it does to take care of disabled children and adults who qualified for Medicaid prior to Obamacare. If you think that doesn’t have a real-world perverse impact, note this. Since Arkansas expanded its Medicaid program under Obamacare, it’s rolls have grown by 25 percent. During that same time, 79 people on the Medicaid waiting list who suffered from developmental disabilities have died. I would encourage you to read my former Heritage Foundation colleague Chris Jacob’s full piece on this. Finally, it’s not just those enrolled in Medicaid that are finding fewer health care provider options. For people who now have health plans through the Obamacare exchanges, new Heritage Foundation research shows that this year, in 70 percent of counties across the country, those consumers will have only one or two insurers to choose from. Add to that the millions of people who lost the doctors and health plans they liked and are now paying higher premiums for less coverage, and you can see that quality health care and anything resembling “choice” has quickly disappeared for an increasing number of Americans due to Obamacare. So the next time a defender of Obamacare tries to take the moral high ground about the millions of people the law has helped, ask them to define what “help” looks like.

17 января, 13:13

Democratic Party rethink gets $20 million injection

Centrist think tank Third Way is launching a campaign to help Democrats reconnect with voters who abandoned them.

16 января, 19:13

Why Education Secretary Nominee Betsy DeVos Is A Dangerous Threat to LGBTQ Equality

“It is unfathomable that the next Secretary of Education would oppose basic protections for LGBT students and roll back the progress we have made to ensure all students feel safe and supported in our schools,” Representative Mark Pocan (D-Wis.), an openly gay House member, said in a statement last week about Donald Trump’s nominee for Secretary of Education, the Michigan billionaire Betsy DeVos. “Ms. DeVos’ history of opposing equality for LGBT individuals is deeply troubling, and the public deserves to know whether she will work with us to improve lives or continue to advocate an extremist agenda that bullies our students.” DeVos is not just someone who has opposed marriage equality in the past, like many people, Democrat and Republican, or who differs on particular policies or laws. She is a hardened anti-LGBTQ crusader, a member of a family that has devoted itself ― by donating tens of millions of dollars ― to fighting the rights of queer people. DeVos is a religious zealot who spoke about using public education to “advance God’s Kingdom.” She doesn’t belong in a government job in which separation of church and state is crucial, and one which over the past eight years has been critical to the safety and educational experience of LGBTQ students. Amid reports in recent years of what seemed like an epidemic of suicides of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender students, the Obama administration worked with advocates for queer youth to fight the bullying in schools that often leads to students taking their own lives. President Obama himself embraced the “It Gets Better” movement championed by Dan Savage in response, and the Education Department’s Office of Civil Rights instituted programs to fight anti-LGBTQ bullying. An LGBT youth summit occurred at the White House. The office issued a directive to schools nationally to allow gay-straight alliances to form on campus. And last year, the administration issued guidance on the treatment of transgender students with regard to public facilities, something which conservatives challenged in court ― a challenge that is still pending, with the Obama administration fighting it during the last days of the administration and which is uncertain under a Trump administration. Will DeVos continue these programs and advance further desperately needed policies toward LGBTQ equality? Both her record and Vice President-Elect Mike Pence’s own words in a radio interview with evangelical leader Dr. James Dobson during the election campaign would suggest not. Pence said he and Trump plan to withdraw federal guidance to the states issued by the Obama administration protecting transgender students: “Donald Trump and I simply believe that all of these issues are best resolved at the state level. Washington has no business intruding on the operation of our local schools.” And since 1998, DeVos and her family’s foundations have donated at least $6.1 million to Focus on the Family, which has fought rights for LGBTQ people, promotes “conversion therapy,” and deems transgender people as “mentally ill.” Focus on the Family also opposes the very anti-bullying programs that the Education Department has developed, and opposes workplace protections for LGBTQ people (like those included in an executive order President Obama signed banning discrimination among federal contractors). A letter from Pocan and four other gay members of Congress to Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), chairman of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (which will question DeVos tomorrow), points out other anti-LGBT efforts the DeVos family has backed: $1,000,000 to the Institute for Marriage and Public Policy, which has claimed that the overturning of the Defense of Marriage Act amounted to a “fatwa;” $15,000 to the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which has opposed adoption with same-sex couples; $433,750 to the Council for National Policy, a highly secretive group that is led by extremists like Focus on the Family’s James Dobson among other extremists; and $13,498,000 to the Heritage Foundation, which has stated that “Despite activist judges’ opinions, the majority of Americans continue to affirm the reasonable conclusion that marriage is the union of one man and one woman.” The DeVos family also contributed $500,000 to the anti-gay National Organization for Marriage. And DeVos and her husband Richard personally contributed to a successful effort to ban marriage equality in Michigan’s constitution. DeVos herself also personally contributed to the campaign of Michigan representative Andrea LaFontaine, who spearheaded abominable legislation in 2015 that now allows state-funded adoption agencies to discriminate against gay and lesbian couples seeking to adopt, turning them away because they are gay. Senators must raise each of these donations and causes in DeVos’s confirmation hearings tomorrow, and hammer her on them. But unless she disavows them and claims to have had a miraculous transformation, it’s impossible to imagine how this individual who has championed school vouchers and private, Christian schools could fairly guide the nation’s public education system, where LGBTQ students are often under attack and need the protections of the federal government. As I wrote at the very beginning of the Trump transition, with evangelical, anti-LGBTQ Pence in charge of the transition, the Trump cabinet picks are a who’s who of homophobia and transphobia, as evangelical groups like the Family Research Council are getting paid off for their support. It looks like a pack wolves ready to rip apart rights for LGBTQ people. And Besty DeVos is among the leaders of the pack. Follow Michelangelo Signorile on Twitter: www.twitter.com/msignorile   type=type=RelatedArticlesblockTitle=Related... + articlesList=5873b76ae4b043ad97e4ab03,5845e2fbe4b0707e4c8171a3 -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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15 января, 00:00

What President Obama Wants You to Forget

Genevieve Wood, Philadelphia InquirerGenevieve Woodis the senior fellow in communications at the Heritage Foundation and the senior contributor for the Daily Signal

12 января, 18:26

Donald Trump's Supreme Court Pick Coming Within 2 Weeks Of Inauguration

function onPlayerReadyVidible(e){'undefined'!=typeof HPTrack&&HPTrack.Vid.Vidible_track(e)}!function(e,i){if(e.vdb_Player){if('object'==typeof commercial_video){var a='',o='m.fwsitesection='+commercial_video.site_and_category;if(a+=o,commercial_video['package']){var c='&m.fwkeyvalues=sponsorship%3D'+commercial_video['package'];a+=c}e.setAttribute('vdb_params',a)}i(e.vdb_Player)}else{var t=arguments.callee;setTimeout(function(){t(e,i)},0)}}(document.getElementById('vidible_1'),onPlayerReadyVidible); President-elect Donald Trump promised Wednesday that he’ll be announcing his choice for the Supreme Court seat of the late Justice Antonin Scalia within two weeks of taking office on Jan. 20. The time frame and the fact his transition team has met with “numerous” candidates were the only new revelations about the impending nomination, which was an important plank of his campaign and the reason many social conservatives and evangelicals held their noses to elect him president. “I’ll be making that decision, and it will be a decision which I very strongly believe in,” Trump said during his long-awaited news conference on how he plans to deal with business conflicts. “I think it’s one of the reasons I got elected. I think the people of this country did not want to see what was happening with the Supreme Court, so I think it was a very, very big decision as to why I was elected.” Later on Wednesday, Vice President-elect Mike Pence told reporters he has been meeting with Democratic senators to give them a sense of Trump’s plans for the Supreme Court. “Today was really about talking about our legislative agenda, but also meeting with members of the Senate to get their input on the president’s decision about filling the vacancy on the Supreme Court,” Pence said, according to CNN. The former Indiana governor met with Democratic Sens. Tim Kaine (Va.), Joe Donnelly (Ind.) and Joe Manchin (W.V.). Pence may be trying to get to 60 — the number of senators needed to break an expected filibuster and move forward on a vote on a Trump nominee. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) has said he expects a “mainstream” candidate to succeed Scalia ― or, if not, for Senate Republicans to expect a fight. Unlike President Barack Obama, who kept his cards close and put a lot of thought into his nominees to the high court, Trump has made no bones about relying on the input of two conservative organizations, The Federalist Society and The Heritage Foundation, to shape his list of 21 potential nominees. “Jim DeMint was also very much involved, and his group, which is fantastic, and he’s a fantastic guy,” he said Wednesday, singling out the Heritage president and former South Carolina senator. Strangely, Trump also said his list now contains 20 names, which suggests someone may have been removed from it — perhaps Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah), who in the lead-up to the election was a fierce Trump critic and brushed off a possible nod to replace Scalia. Among those rumored to be closest to getting Trump’s seal of approval are a handful of federal appeals judges, including U.S. Circuit Judge William Pryor of the 11th Circuit, and U.S. Circuit Judge Diane Sykes of the 7th Circuit. Trump said Wednesday his shortlist is made up of judges who are “outstanding in every case,” but for all the public knows, he may very well rely on looks to make his final choice. -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

12 января, 13:48

Mattis on the issues

Retired Marine Gen. James Mattis, appearing Thursday before the Senate Armed Services Committee for his confirmation to be Defense secretary, has a long record of hawkish positions on Iran, Russia and other global adversaries.His views will almost certainly face a receptive audience from Chairman John McCain (R-Ariz.) and other members of the committee — though some of his positions on personnel issues are expected to face resistance from committee Democrats.Here are Mattis’ views on key issues:IranMattis ran afoul of the Obama administration when he was head of U.S. Central Command, which overseas military operations in the Middle East, over his hawkish views toward Iran when he pushed a more aggressive strategy to confront Tehran.As head of the U.S Central Command, Mattis is reported to have declared that his three biggest priorities in the Middle East were “Iran, Iran, Iran.” He accused Iran of being “the single most enduring threat to stability and peace in the Middle East.”At the same time, Mattis is hesitant to blow up the Iranian nuclear deal that the Obama administration negotiated in 2015. He explained at a Heritage Foundation speech last year that while he had problems the deal, the U.S. negotiated it with its allies and restarting unilateral sanctions would not be effective."There's no going back," Mattis said. “I think we're going to have to hold at risk the nuclear program in the future. In other words, make plans now of what we'd do if in fact they restarted."Russia Mattis’ past statements on Russia’s threat to the U.S. and NATO clash with President-elect Donald Trump praise of Russian President Vladimir Putin.U.S. military officials have labeled Russia the No. 1 security threat and senators are sure to ask Mattis if he shares those views. Previously, the retired Marine general said Moscow’s goal was to “break NATO apart,” and he declared in a 2015 speech at The Heritage Foundation that the situation with Russia was “much more severe and much more serious than we have acknowledged.”“Putin goes to bed at night knowing he can break all the rules, and the West will follow all the rules,” Mattis said in the same speech. “That is a very dangerous dichotomy in the way the world is being run.”Social issuesMattis has opposed some of the social changes that took place in the military under President Barack Obama, most notably the decision to open all combat jobs to women.In a 2014 speech to veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, Mattis said his opposition was not because he doesn’t believe women are qualified, but because he doesn’t believe in mixing love and close-quarters combat.“The idea of putting women in there is not setting them up for success,” Mattis said at the time. “Could we find a woman who can run fast enough? Of course we could. Could you find a few who could do the pull-ups? Of course you could. That is not the point. “Do you really want to mix love, affection, whatever you call it, in a unit where you, as a 20-year-old squad leader, can point at someone else and point forward knowing full well you’ve now introduced all the affections and the testosterone and the love and everything else that goes into young people?” he continued. “I think it would only be someone who’s never crossed a line of departure into close-counters fighting that would ever even promote such an idea.”The war against ISILIn 2015, Mattis voiced support for Congress to pass a war resolution against the Islamic State, but cautioned it should not limit the military's ability to use all means necessary to defeat the terrorist network.In a position paper for the Hoover Institution, Mattis said a new Authorization for the Use of Military Force against ISIL would demonstrate the country's "fundamental unity" in dealing with ISIL. But, he said, such a resolution should not restrict the military.It should have no timeline, he said, nor geographic limits. And, he wrote, it should not restrict the use of U.S. ground combat troops.Civilian control of the militaryMattis’ biggest hurdle to confirmation may be that he requires an exemption from the law mandating a seven-year cooling-off period for retired military officers before becoming Defense secretary.Lawmakers in the House and Senate from both parties have raised concerns about upending the principle of civilian control of the military, but most have also argued that a one-time waiver can be made for Mattis.The retired four-star general, who spent more than four decades in uniform, has given civilian-military relations plenty of thought. Mattis and Kori Schake of the Hoover Institution co-edited a book, “Warriors and Citizens: American Views of Our Military,” that examined civilian-military relations.“There is a fundamental difference between military rank structure and the egalitarian culture of America,” Mattis and Schake wrote in a chapter they co-authored titled “A Great Divergence.” “There is also among civilians the temptation to treat warfare as just another arena of politics, with public indifference giving latitude for the imposition of social choices — conservative or progressive — uninformed by the grim exigencies and atavistic demands of warfare,” they added.

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11 января, 20:19

Trump pledges to name Supreme Court nominee within two weeks of inauguration

President elect Donald Trump said that he would nominate a Supreme Court justice "probably within two weeks" of his inauguration on Jan. 20. The announcement came in the course of Trump's press conference on Wednesday, his first since July, where he also responded to unsubstantiated claims that the Kremlin has compromising personal information on the president-elect. Trump said he has met with "numerous" candidates for the seat vacated by the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, and all have been "outstanding." Helping guide his decision are Federalist Society executive vice president Leonard Leo, Heritage Foundation President and former South Carolina senator Jim DeMint, and a handful of Republican lawmakers, he said.

11 января, 13:45

Who Will Trump Pick As Next Fed Chair?

With tensions between president-elect Trump and Fed Chair Janet Yellen strained, Standish Chief Economist Vincent Reinhart discusses possible Federal Reserve appointments under a Trump administration. The front-runner, in his opinion, seems to be John Taylor... Taylor and Hubbard were talked about during the Bernanke discussions... but Reinhart notes that broadly speaking they are conventional and will follow a tightening path (should the data continue to confirm it). With hard-money advocates evident across many of Trump's picks, his choice will be intriguing. Full interview below: As we noted previously, starting in a week, President-elect Donald Trump will have a unique opportunity to pack the Federal Reserve with hard money officials. There are currently two open Board of Governors seats, which will most likely not be filled before the end of President Obama’s tenure. Additionally, both Chair Janet Yellen and Vice-Chair Stanley Fischer’s terms will be up by 2018. Crunch the numbers and you will see that Trump has the opportunity to replace a majority of the Board of Governors and a third of the FOMC with monetary policy hawks during his presidency. Call me crazy, but assuming that the Republican-controlled House and Senate stands behind him, I believe that Trump just may shock the financial world by shifting this country’s monetary policy in a more hawkish direction. Yes, this is a guy that cheered on the Fed’s easy-money policies in the years before the Great Recession. And yes, Trump did say in May that he is still a “low interest rate person” who will appoint another dove to head the Federal Reserve. Why in the world, then, am I arguing that the Trump administration might possibly install more hawkish members to the central bank? Repeated Anti-Fed Campaign Rhetoric For one, Trump’s occasional dovish comments do not match the passion and enthusiasm of his repeated hawkish campaign trail rhetoric. For the past year, the president-elect has been railing against the “false economy” that the Fed has created, as well as the political influence that runs rampant throughout the central bank. Perhaps Trump’s most scathing attack on the institution came last October, when he insinuated that Fed actions are crippling the middle class without creating any type of benefit to the economy at large. “[Chairwoman Yellen] is keeping the economy going, barely,” he said. “You know who gets hurt the most [by her easy money policies]? The people that went through 40 years of their life and saved a hundred dollars every week [in the bank].” He then paused and shook his head for added effect before adding: “They worked all their lives to save and now what happens is they’re being forced into an inflated stock market and at some point they’ll get wiped out.” These anti-Fed talking points were recycled often on the campaign trail. In September, Trump attacked the Fed for putting us in a “big, fat, ugly bubble” and for keeping rates artificially low for political purposes, points that he again repeated in the first presidential debate. The business mogul has also promised to audit the Fed within the first 100 days of his administration and even included a criticism of the central bank in a recent online video ad. Sound Money Economic Advisers Team Trump’s economic advisers paint an even more optimistic picture of his future monetary policy. Some of today’s most reasonable mainstream economic voices are included in his inner circle. These names include David Malpass of Encima Global, who co-signed a letter with Jim Grant opposing the Fed’s “inflationary” and “distortive” quantitative easing program; John Paulson of Paulson & Co., who made billions from shorting the housing market before the Great Recession; Andy Beal, a self-described "libertarian kind of guy" who blames the Fed for the credit crisis; and the Heritage Foundation’s Stephen Moore, who told CSIN in 2012 that he is a “very severe critic” of the Fed’s “incredibly easy-money policies policies of the past decade.” While none of Trump’s economic advisers are by any means Austrians, they are far more hawkish than most of Presidents Bush and Obama’s past economic advisers. Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, has even said that these advisers are pushing Trump to nominate two “hard money” candidates to fill the Fed’s current vacancies. “A core view of many Trump advisors is that the extended period of emergency policy settings has promoted a bubble in the stock market, depressing the incomes of savers, scared the public and encouraged capital misallocation,” Shepherdson told Market Watch. “Right now, these are minority views on the Fed policymaking committee, but Trump appointees are likely to shift the needle.” The Mike Pence Factor Perhaps the best news for Austrians is that reports have indicated Trump may make his running mate the “most powerful vice president in history.” This is good news, because Mike Pence is one of the more hawkish voices in the modern Republican Party.   While in Congress, Pence expressed regular concern that the Fed was deteriorating the value of the dollar. He introduced legislation to end the dual mandate and even talked up a return to the gold standard.   In a high-profile 2010 speech to the Detroit Economic Club, Pence remarked that “while there is no guarantee that [the Fed’s bond-buying] will succeed in reducing unemployment, it is near certain that the value of the dollar will be diluted.” He then went on to say that “the time has come to have a debate over gold and the proper role it should play in our nation’s monetary affairs,” because “a pro-growth agenda begins with sound monetary policy.” Conclusion Trump’s election has given hard money advocates the most hope in over 30 years that our nation’s failed monetary policy will be reformed. Mixed with the current hawkish wave that is already percolating in the veins of some FOMC members, Trump’s future appointments can have a huge impact on the central bank’s immediate decision-making. One can only hope that the president-elect will stick to his guns and do the right thing. Regardless of what he does, however, it will surely be a step ahead of what the Hillary Clinton rubber dove stamp would have brought to the trading desks.

11 января, 00:26

Donald Trump Joins GOP Lawmakers In Their Repeal-And-Replace Quagmire

function onPlayerReadyVidible(e){'undefined'!=typeof HPTrack&&HPTrack.Vid.Vidible_track(e)}!function(e,i){if(e.vdb_Player){if('object'==typeof commercial_video){var a='',o='m.fwsitesection='+commercial_video.site_and_category;if(a+=o,commercial_video['package']){var c='&m.fwkeyvalues=sponsorship%3D'+commercial_video['package'];a+=c}e.setAttribute('vdb_params',a)}i(e.vdb_Player)}else{var t=arguments.callee;setTimeout(function(){t(e,i)},0)}}(document.getElementById('vidible_1'),onPlayerReadyVidible); For as long as there has been an Affordable Care Act, there has been a desire, among Republicans, to repeal the Affordable Care Act and replace it with an alternative plan. As far as having something on which to campaign, this has served Republicans in good stead. Ranting about the need to repeal Obamacare has never gone out of style with the GOP base. The problem has always been with the “replace” part of the equation. For years, the GOP effort to produce an alternate plan has been, to be charitable, a fits-and-starts affair. Since March 2009, the Republican answer to Obamacare has been a Schrödinger’s bill. Or as Jonathan Chait once put it, the Republican replacement plans “reside in a state of quasi-existence, and any attempt to summon them into existence will cause them to disappear.” But now ― and perhaps to them unexpectedly ― congressional Republicans face the crisis of an incoming presidential administration that will sign their repeal-and-replace bills into law. Which means the zero hour has finally arrived, and Republicans must undertake the dread mission they’ve been putting off. There are, however, complications inextricably bound to the whims and desires of Donald Trump, who sees the matter in vastly different terms and, more often than one would prefer, communicates his desires in brief Twitter outbursts. Where Republican lawmakers want to act in accordance with their conservative philosophies, Trump operates strictly from the perspective of someone who wants to be loved and acclaimed, and who has won a healthy share of this acclaim largely through his masterful command of the P.R. of the moment. At bottom, Trump craves good publicity, and he’s starting to see the upcoming health care fight as something that might deny him that pleasure. Since Trump’s election, Republicans in Congress have been debating their options. Faced with the need to do something as quickly as possible, GOP leaders have endeavored to build consensus around a plan to “repeal and delay” ― a process by which the underlying funding for the Affordable Care Act would be scuttled, but the mechanics of the law would be left in place. Then, by backstopping hospitals against financial risk and bailing out insurers during the interregnum so that they continue serving their existing customers (and so that hundreds of news stories about people losing all or part of their coverage are staved off), Republicans would buy themselves some time to, you know, come up with the thing they’ve been promising to deliver for eight years. But the path to consensus has been fraught, with GOP leadership unable to determine how long precisely to “delay” the replacement (periods as long as four years have been floated) and with a faction of GOP lawmakers vocally opposed to any delay at all. Additionally, one of the more interesting things about the repeal-and-delay plan is that the effort that would need to be undertaken to prevent a calamity of bad publicity would inadvertently do the job of shoring up the existing law at some of its weakest points. And that would sure be ironic, as Chait points out: Republicans can certainly patch up the exchanges and keep them going during a transition period. All it would require is halting their relentless efforts to blow up the law and start trying to make it work. (“They want to pump money back in to the insurers without appearing like they’re giving them a handout or bailing them out,” one insurance lobbyist explains.) But if they do this, then they’ll have essentially proven that they can fix Obamacare. And if they can fix it, why would they let it expire? Especially when the deadline for the replacement approaches and, inevitably, Republicans have still failed to produce a replacement? Last week, in a series of tweets, Trump alerted his Republican colleagues to the snare into which they were about to step. “Republicans must be careful in that the Dems own the failed ObamaCare disaster, with its poor coverage and massive premium increases...like the 116% hike in Arizona. Also, deductibles are so high that it is practically useless. Don’t let the Schumer clowns out of this web...massive increases of ObamaCare will take place this year and Dems are to blame for the mess,” Trump wrote. “It will fall of its own weight - be careful!” This outburst mirrored a longer Wall Street Journal editorial that appeared at the end of December, but it took Trump’s amplifications to convince some Republicans to take these warnings to heart. As “Meet the Press” reported, Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) was urging a cautious approach a day later, saying, “I don’t think we can just repeal Obamacare and say we’re going to get the answer two years from now. ... When we repeal Obamacare, we need to have the solution in place.” .@SenTomCotton on Obamacare: "I don't think we can just repeal Obamacare and say we're going to get the answer 2 years from now." #MTPDaily— Meet the Press (@MeetThePress) January 5, 2017 .@SenTomCotton: "When we repeal Obamacare, we need to have the solution in place." #MTPDaily— Meet the Press (@MeetThePress) January 5, 2017 And Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) ― who apparently is among the fortunate few whose calls Trump will pick up whenever they come in ― is suddenly concerned that the GOP’s repeal-and-delay effort will land the Republican Party in a “box canyon,” which actually sounds pretty fun until you find out that “box canyon” is a strained metaphor for “being on the hook for an unexpected tax increase.” As Roll Call’s Niels Lesniewski reports: Speaking at a breakfast hosted by the Christian Science Monitor, Corker outlined the potential “box canyon” that Republicans could find themselves in if they repeal all of the taxes imposed by the Affordable Care Act on the front end. If there’s a need to further extend the existing subsidies for lower- income health care recipients beyond the three-year bridge under discussion or if the replacement plan features refundable tax credits down the road, “that means Republicans would have to vote for a tax increase.” Corker said to the reporters in attendance that the result could be an extension of current policy driven as much by inertia as by anything else. Lesniewski goes on to report that while Corker understood the “tremendous desire by Republicans to just repeal immediately,” he was more inclined to Trump’s point of view, and he “pointed to comments by Trump that said repeal and replace should be moved simultaneously.” Days later, it became apparent that Trump’s anxieties were being felt widely among Republican legislators, with a “half-dozen” lawmakers “call[ing] publicly for slowing down the process.” As The Huffington Post reports: On Monday, five of them put their protests on paper ― by introducing an amendment to the budget resolution that would push back that Jan. 27 date until March 3. “Repeal and replace should take place simultaneously, and this amendment will give the incoming administration more time to outline its priorities,” Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) said. “By exercising due diligence we can create a stable transition to an open health care marketplace that provides far greater choice and more affordable plans for the American people.” And Corker, apparently getting a busy signal from Trump’s phone, was begging the incoming president to please send some clarifications. As Politico reports, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) let it be known that he had spoken to Trump earlier in the week and had “secured his agreement” to Paul’s demand that repeal and replace happen simultaneously. Trump hadn’t publicly confirmed this, leaving Corker with no other choice than to ask Trump if he would do so: “If it his view, it would be really good if he would consider tweeting it out very clearly.” It seems insane that Republican lawmakers are begging Trump to tweet them instructions, as if they take their marching orders from an obscure numbers station. But the fact of the matter is that Republicans haven’t had an original thought on what to do about Obamacare in years. The threat of President Barack Obama’s veto pen has always protected them from the consequences of a repeal vote. As far as replacement plans go, the same lawmakers have been stuck in an endless cycle of proposing bills (always with the same components ― health savings accounts, buying insurance across state lines, tort reform), sending those bills to committee to die, chafing at criticism that their alternative plan doesn’t exist, and rebooting the process anew. On this issue, congressional Republicans have always desperately wanted someone else to call the shots. They live to be led ― and the intermittent messages from Trump’s Twitter account is as good at filling that role as anything else. But while Trump may have helped his Republican colleagues recognize the trap they were in, it’s anybody’s guess as to whether he can truly lead them out of it. Over the course of the presidential campaign, Trump offered up any number of opinions on what the state of American health care should ideally resemble, but those were restricted to vague principles and few specifics. For example, in a September 2015 “60 Minutes” interview with Scott Pelley, Trump said that “everybody’s got to be covered” and that “the government’s gonna pay for it.” At a February 2016 GOP primary debate, Trump told the audience, “What I do say is, there will be a certain number of people that will be on the street dying and as a Republican, I don’t want that to happen. We’re going to take care of people that are dying on the street, because there will be a group of people that are not going to be able to even think in terms of private or anything else and we’re going to take care of those people.” But at other times, Trump has scaled back those promises. In a post-election “60 Minutes” interview with Lesley Stahl, Trump offered that he’d continue to assure that people with pre-existing medical conditions were covered by insurance and to maintain the extended period through which children may remain on their parents’ health plans. Still, as recently as Jan. 3, Trump spokesperson Kellyanne Conway was, on his behalf, making a difficult-to-keep promise. As CNBC’s Dan Mangan reports: One more time: If you like your plan, you can keep your plan. A senior advisor to President-elect Donald Trump said Tuesday that after Obamacare is repealed and replaced with different health-care law no one who has health insurance would lose their coverage. “That is correct. We don’t want anyone who currently has insurance to not have insurance,” the advisor, Kellyanne Conway, said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” Perhaps Trump’s position is best summed up by a July interview with CNN, in which he said, “[Obamacare’s] gotta go. ... Repeal and replace with something terrific.” The problem is that everyone has a different idea about what constitutes “terrific.” To Trump’s legislative partners, that means plans with high deductibles and threadbare benefits that mostly offer catastrophic coverage, subsidized by health savings accounts ― unless, of course, you or your employer are able to afford something better. What would be terrific from the point of view of Trump voters? Well, in a New York Times op-ed last week, the Kaiser Family Foundation’s Drew Altman reported on a series of focus groups conducted with Rust Belt Trump voters who are either on Medicaid or enrolled in insurance plans through the Affordable Care Act. Their responses were very interesting. Among their chief complaints were “rising premiums, deductibles, copays and drug costs,” as well as “surprise bills for services they believed were covered” and “hopelessly complex” plans. Those with Affordable Care Act plans “saw Medicaid as a much better deal ... and were resentful that people with incomes lower than theirs could get it.” Ideally, these focus groups said, their health care plan would “focus on keeping their out-of-pocket costs low, control drug prices and improve access to cheaper drugs.” Of course, there has never been any indication that a Republican alternative to Obamacare would move in the voters’ preferred direction. Rather, any alternative plan would almost assuredly double-down on all the anxiety-inducing features of their current plans. As Altman noted, this would probably not go over well with those voters: Surveys show that most enrollees in the Affordable Care Act marketplaces are happy with their plans. The Trump voters in our focus groups were representative of people who had not fared as well. Several described their frustration with being forced to change plans annually to keep premiums down, losing their doctors in the process. But asked about policies found in several Republican plans to replace the Affordable Care Act — including a tax credit to help defray the cost of premiums, a tax-preferred savings account and a large deductible typical of catastrophic coverage — several of these Trump voters recoiled, calling such proposals “not insurance at all.” One of those plans has been proposed by Representative Tom Price, Mr. Trump’s nominee to be secretary of Health and Human Services. These voters said they did not understand health savings accounts and displayed skepticism about the concept. When told Mr. Trump might embrace a plan that included these elements, and particularly very high deductibles, they expressed disbelief. They were also worried about what they called “chaos” if there was a gap between repealing and replacing Obamacare. But most did not think that, as one participant put it, “a smart businessman like Trump would let that happen.” This is, perhaps, the biggest disconnect between Trump’s voters and the people in whom they’ve placed their trust. Republican legislators are hoping to get a quick repeal and to buy some time to come up with a palatable plan ― but there’s never been any indication that they can stomach actually creating a plan that’s truly in line with what their constituents want. Trump sees a looming political trap and wants there to be a period of inertia so that Democrats end up taking the blame for entropy in the Affordable Care Act’s marketplace ― which is probably what a Republican-controlled Congress would have done if Hillary Clinton had won the election. The problem is that Trump has styled himself as a different sort of president. Like that focus-group participant averred, Trump voters think they elected a “smart businessman” who won’t let bad things happen. He’s supposed to be a swashbuckling outsider who’ll start cutting through Washington’s thicket of idleness and start delivering better deals to the American people. Trump may prefer that Democrats take further heat for Obamacare’s problems. But his voters don’t want this can to be kicked down the road any further, and they want the “terrific” replacement promised to them. With all that in mind, it’s hard to see where Trump and GOP lawmakers go together, because it’s not clear they ultimately want the same thing. Perhaps Trump will do something truly audacious: suggest that the GOP simply fix the Affordable Care Act, sell it as a repeal-and-replace job, and rebrand the whole thing “Trump Care.” Indeed, that canyon is only truly boxed if Trump ignores the exit pass, the one that leads to a health care system that people actually like. It wouldn’t be in keeping with conservative philosophy, but that hasn’t stopped Trump before. Besides, if you look at the actual details of what Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) wants to replace Medicare with, it looks a lot like the Affordable Care Act. They could all take some form of spiteful pride in essentially stealing Obama’s landmark legislation from him ― which, I suppose, is fair turnabout, since Democrats originally stole it from the Heritage Foundation and Mitt Romney. You shouldn’t discount the extent to which animosity inside the Beltway is solely driven by who ends up getting to take credit for what. And in this scenario, Trump could gain what he desires most: public affection. It would be a sordid and petty way to resolve this eight-year long conflict, but at long last, it would provide a way for everyone finally to “win.” ~~~~~  Jason Linkins edits “Eat The Press” for The Huffington Post and co-hosts the HuffPost Politics podcast “So, That Happened.” Subscribe here, and listen to the latest episode below.  -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

10 января, 15:07

Опрос: американские военные недовольны Обамой

Эксперты критикуют главу государства и называют его пассивным бойцом

10 января, 14:05

Американские военные рассказали, что думают об Обаме

Большинство действующих американских военнослужащих негативно оценивают работу президента США Барака Обамы в качестве главнокомандующего вооруженных сил США. Об этом свидетельствуют результаты опроса, проведенного онлайн-изданием Military Times совместно с некоммерческой организацией Сиракузского университета Institute for Veterans and Military Families. Недовольны работой Обамы в большинстве родов войск. В Корпусе морской пехоты США неодобрительную оценку президенту дали 60,3% военнослужащих, в сухопутных войсках - 53%, в ВВС - 49,6% и в ВМС - 45,9%. В общей сложности 29,1% респондентов крайне недовольны командованием уходящего американского президента. Survey by @MilitaryTimes and @IVMFSyracuseU found most troops have unfavorable view of Obama. SPECIAL REPORT: https://t.co/ad1p6c7dy5 pic.twitter.com/3p9YrJRsRs- Military Times (@MilitaryTimes) 9 января 2017 г. "Нет никаких сомнений, армия этой эры запомнится истощенной, и в этом виноват президент. Что касается всех его обещаний, то интенсивность операций не сильно снизилась, да и инвестиций в вооруженные силы было немного", - приводит Military Times слова директора программы международных исследований Heritage Foundation военного эксперта Джеймса Джея Карафано. Отмечается, что военные не приняли решение Обамы сократить численность личного состава ВС (71% опрошенных считают, что военнослужащих должно быть еще больше), не одобрили вывод войск из Ирака (59% уверены, что это снизило безопасность страны) и винят президента за недостаточное внимание к значительным внешним угрозам (64% респондентов считают такой угрозой Китай). "Он (Барак Обама - ред.) - пассивный боец. Ему не удалось закончить зарубежные кампании и выполнить эти обещания, да он бы и не сумел", - комментирует результаты исследования директор военных, ветеранских и социальных программа Центра новой американской безопасности (Center for New American Security) Фил Картер. В своих мемуарах бывший министр обороны США Роберт Гейтс критиковал Обаму за "неверие в собственную стратегию" и отмечал, что президент относился к руководящим офицерам как к потенциальным противникам, чем заслужил недоверие военнослужащих.(https://ria.ru/world/2017...)

10 января, 00:00

Obama Fails at Home and Abroad

Jim DeMint, USA TodayPresident graduates with poor grades in three major areas, writes former senator Jim DeMint, R-S.C., who's now president of the Heritage Foundation.

09 января, 13:09

Trump planning to give Cabinet unusually wide latitude

The president-elect is also urging his top officials to make a splash in the first six months.

06 января, 23:13

Why There Is No Obamacare Replacement -- In One Picture

There is no conservative replacement health reform plan for Obamacare -- because Obamacare is a conservative health reform plan. After six years of promising to repeal 'n' replace the President's signature domestic achievement, Republican lawmakers have no coherent alternative to the Affordable Care Act for one good reason: because the Affordable Care Act was once the market-based alternative to a real, not imagined, "government takeover" of health care. What has always made the ACA a political pariah to Republicans, typified by the bizarre claim by House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) on Wednesday that "Obamacare" has "ruined" and "dismantled" our health care system, is the plan's namesake -- far more than its necessarily complex architecture or any of its actual details, unless you count the details they made up. And so, if only for kicks, how about some actual historic facts and context about a health reform plan that was actually decades in the making, only three years into full implementation, and on the eve of blind destruction by demagogues who have no idea what they're taking about. The chart below illustrates where the ACA sits, ideologically, relative to all other health reform plan models. This chart places the ACA along a continuum of all serious reform options developed, debated, and discarded or ignored since the 1980s. They are all here: from the single-payer, centrally controlled models popular with those who detest corporations and the corrupting influence of money in medicine -- two actual, not imagined "government takeovers of health care" -- to a fully free-market, laissez faire model favored by those who detest regulation and the heavy hand of government in medicine. On the far left, the federal (or provincial) government is the main insurer, owns most hospitals, and employs most doctors. This pure form of single-payer seems to be supported or reviled in equal measure, especially by the nation's physicians. As a model for nationwide reform, it is as much a religion as a public policy framework -- people believe it will be either health care's Messiah or its anti-Christ -- and no one will convince them otherwise. This model is the foundation for many of the systems in Europe, and the systems in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Singapore. Unbeknownst to many under their actual care today, there are two working systems based on this model in the US today: Kaiser, and the Veterans Health Administration. The second model, Medicare-for-All, differs from the pure form of single-payer by retaining the current independence of most hospitals and doctors. This model jettisons private insurance companies and covers all Americans directly, while an all-encompassing Medicare program pays for covered care delivered by today's crazy quilt of providers: large and small physician groups, for-profit, religious-affiliated, independent and academic hospitals, the works. This is what Medicare beneficiaries have today -- except for the 31 percent who opt for privatized "Medicare Advantage" plans offered by commercial insurers. Medicare-for-all is supported by those who believe it would bring the relative efficiencies, fairness, and low administrative costs of Medicare to all of us -- and reviled by those who think Medicare works like hell. Because there are oceans of data to support both views, this too is ultimately a matter of secular faith: government, good; government, evil. To the right of Medicare-for-all is "managed competition," the basis for the reform plan proposed in 1993 by President Bill and First Lady Hillary Clinton and derided as "Hillarycare." This model is built on the traditional system of multiple private insurers and providers, but highly organizes and regulates both. It achieves universal access by mandating employers and individuals to participate and by requiring everyone -- with or without current coverage -- to give up what they have and commit to one of several competing vertical insurer/provider entities. The managed competition model is based on managed care theories developed in the 1970s; when proposed by the Clintons in 1990s, it was popular with much of the Washington technocracy -- and vilified by conservatives. Modified versions of this model exist in Germany and Israel, and in a handful of US markets (e.g., Hawaii, San Francisco and Portland, Oregon, sort of) with vertically integrated providers that compete with Kaiser. Back in the mid-1990s, most Republicans and many health industry experts attacked "HillaryCare" as cumbersome, over-engineered, and hyper-bureaucratic; it was destroyed in the court of public opinion by an insurer-funded TV ad campaign that people remember better than any details of the plan itself. Conservatives hated the plan so much, in fact, that the folks over at the Heritage Foundation came up with their own market-based alternative. The plan achieved universal access by requiring people to purchase their own insurance, but enabled them to do so through a competitive marketplace, with subsidies for the poor. Hmm. Sounds familiar, no? The Heritage plan sounds familiar because it was the conservative alternative to government-driven plans like single-payer and Hillarycare, and because it became the basis for Mitt Romney's health reform plan implemented in Massachusetts -- which is turn was the basis for - for what? It was the basis for the plan one click from the far right of our spectrum of health reform models: President Obama's plan, known as the "Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act," or the ACA, until it was branded -- derisively by Republicans -- as "Obamacare." (I tried to point all this out in the New York Times in 2012, while working at a conservative think tank, for which I was ridiculed by my own colleagues, excoriated on Capitol Hill, and received death threats, a few years before getting death threats for publishing actual facts was in vogue.) Notwithstanding all the political noise that long ago drowned out all discussion of actual facts about the actual law: Obamacare is a radical endorsement and extension of the status quo. This is why everything that was ever wrong with the health insurance system -- ever increasing premiums, deductibles, and co-payments, the perennial narrowing networks of providers, and all of its byzantine administrative processes -- has now been laid at the feet of the plan. This is why the House Speaker has no qualms about uttering utter nonsense about Obamacare "ruining" and "dismantling" the health care system. To minimize actual (not perceived or politicized) disruption to most people's coverage - a major and valid criticism of the Clinton plan -- the architects of the ACA retained most of the features of the traditional employer, insurance and provider systems. The ACA merely expanded the system toward universal access by mandating that most of the uninsured participate in it, unless their incomes were low enough to qualify them for an expanded version of Medicaid. Because Obamacare requires insurers to cover all comers -- and does away with caps on those with catastrophically expensive medical situations -- it is funded by mandated participation by all of us too young for Medicare and too well off for traditional Medicaid, either directly or through employers. Expanding the exact same plan to include Health Savings Accounts and allowing consumers to buy coverage across the stateliness -- two line-item policy ideas Republicans tout as the major levers in their magical mystery replacement plan -- could be appended onto the ACA with a dozen pages of legislation. By contrast, the only "replacement" model of any substance that breaks to the right of Obamacare - the one free market economists have been championing for decades -- would be truly disruptive and a complete political non-starter. This model, on the far right of the chart above, would be a truly free market health care system. It would allow people with commercial insurance or no insurance to purchase their own coverage in an open market; and it would not require anyone to purchase insurance, nor any insurer to cover anyone they did not want to. Under this model, kicked around in the back pages of the health policy literature since the 1990s, all purchasing decisions about coverage and plan design are left to individuals and insurers. Economists believe this Lord of the Flies model would radically reshape health insurance and downstream medical markets, by driving efficiency in pricing and reducing excess medical resource spending. They believe that market distortions created by the tax deductibility of health insurance purchasing are enormous -- and that the extra political mile it would take to eliminate this tax deduction would be well worth the effort in terms of health care marketplace correction and system self-reform. As a corollary to this belief, this "direct retail" model extracts employers from the system altogether, converting the health insurance market into something more akin to auto and homeowners insurance markets and maximizing the power of consumer market forces to control health care spending in general. Under this model, everyone is free to purchase whatever mix of insurance and services they want and can find, from whatever organization will sell to them, at whatever price the market yields. Modified versions of this model exist in China and India on top of threadbare single-payer systems incapable of serving the needs of their large and growing populations and emerging middle classes. Proponents of the only model to the right of Obamacare believe that its inherent pricing efficiency would drive the marketplace to very high-deductible insurance plans, while converting a great deal of medical care to a cash-and-carry system. They believe this model would drive healthy Americans toward Health Savings Accounts and greatly benefit from consumers purchasing whatever plan they wanted across state lines. In terms of moving us toward universal access, they would augment this model by allowing lower-income people, the uninsured and others priced out of these liberated insurance markets with either a "premium support" or "voucher" program -- two ideas that sound similar but play out differently as health care costs increase. The subsidy mechanism -- and its associated semantic and political branding wars over "premium support" vs. "voucher" -- is also the economic fulcrum in Congressman Paul Ryan's proposal in 2013 for reforming Medicare. That Obamacare is a right-of-center plan, especially when viewed relative to all viable alternatives, explains why it has always had so little political support from anyone. Liberals hate Obamacare because it is not single-payer, and feeds tens of millions of newly insured people to what they revile as a money-gobbling, profit-obsessed health insurance dragon. Conservatives hate Obamacare because it is the heavy hand of government choking whatever air is left out of the current, dysfunctional health insurance market -- and because they cannot see beyond their political rage at President Obama to recognize their own ideas at the core of his health reform plan. Obamacare has always been a shabby political step-child. So where is that Republican replacement plan? Don't hold your breath. Health Savings Accounts and buying insurance across state lines may sound nifty to people who have no idea what that means or might look like, but they are at best minor endorsements and extensions of the status quo, chocolate and rainbow sprinkles on the same old sour ice cream. The only meaningful right-wing replacement plan is the only one to the right of Obamacare in our chart: a health insurance market free-for-all. No tax deductibility, no employer involvement, no fuss, no muss. And what would be the actual effect of implementing that? Everyone who has insurance through their employer today - which is to say almost everybody not in Medicare or Medicaid -- suddenly pays a whole lot more in taxes. Not exactly what any of the Republicans clamoring to repeal 'n' replace want to sell back home. This is the real reason why, when asked for the details for their replacement plan, the Republicans in Congress have always had, and still have, exactly and only one real answer: "Our replacement plan is Obamacare sucks." Stay tuned for more of nothing. -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

06 января, 12:00

How Republicans Plan to Roll Back Obama-Era Regulations

Health care, trade pacts, environment regulation, financial oversight—you name the policy area, the GOP is set to roll it back.  

05 января, 20:23

How to Stop a Nuclear Missile

Lasers-armed drones and interceptor missiles are among America’s possible tech options for impeding a North Korean nuclear strike.

05 января, 13:07

Trump's team tries to stifle rift on Russia

Some of his nominees have labeled Moscow a dangerous rival that wages cyberwar on the U.S., in contrast with Trump's praise for Putin.

05 января, 03:14

Press Briefing by Press Secretary Josh Earnest, 1/4/2017

James S. Brady Press Briefing Room  12:43 P.M. EST MR. EARNEST:  Good afternoon, everybody.  Nice to see you all.  I do not have any comments at the start, so we can go straight to your questions.  Darlene, would you like to start? Q    Yeah, thanks.  Would you give us a brief oral readout of the President's meeting on the Hill today with congressional members? MR. EARNEST:  I'd be happy to. Q    He was there for more than 90 minutes, so he must have had a lot to say.   MR. EARNEST:  He did have a lot to say.  And you've heard a little bit about his comments from some of the Democratic leaders who attended the meeting.   The President began his remarks by expressing his gratitude and pride for all of the progress that's been made over the last eight years.  And that gratitude was rooted not just in the political success that Democrats have had in advancing that agenda, but rooted in the tangible positive difference that their efforts have made in the lives of millions of Americans in communities large and small across the country.  And much of that work would not have been possible had the President not been able to work effectively with Democrats in Congress to get so much of that done, given the unreasonable and unprecedented obstruction that was erected by congressional Republicans.  The President continued saying that that should fuel their efforts moving forward.  And even though Democrats in Congress will not have the kind of cooperative partner that they've enjoyed for the last eight years in the White House, they still have a set of values and priorities that are worth fighting for.  And the good news is that those are values and priorities that most Americans agree with and strongly support, and those are values and priorities that lead to policies that make people's lives better and make our country stronger.  And the President expressed his -- the word that he used was "envy" for the opportunity that they have to keep up that fight.   And the President expressed his confidence in their ability not just to wage those fights with passion, but he expressed confidence in their ability to succeed -- again, both because the majority of the American people agree with them, whether it's investing in the kinds of policies that expand economic opportunity for middle-class families, whether it is expanding access to health care for every American making it not just a privilege but a right, making sure that there are consumer protections in place so that every American can't be discriminated against because they have a preexisting condition, and they can't be subject to lifetime caps that allow them to no longer benefit from insurance coverage if someone in their family gets sick.  These are the kinds of values and priorities that Democrats have long fought for, and these are the values and priorities that most Americans agree with. So that was essentially the President's opening statement, and then he took questions from a substantial number of House and Senate Democrats.  And most of the questions centered on the proximate fight on Capitol Hill, which is the Republican attempt to repeal the Affordable Care Act, but the President had an opportunity to touch on some other areas, as well.  And the President really enjoyed the opportunity to go up there, and was warmly received, which he has been every time by Democrats on Capitol Hill, even when he's gone up there to address differences that they have.   But I got to tell you, in this case the President has gone to -- in the past, and you all have covered times when the President has traveled to Capitol Hill to try to bridge differences with Democrats on Capitol Hill -- that was not the case this time.  This time the President was there to affirm his support for the agenda that Democrats in Congress are fighting for.  And that unanimity will be a source of strength for Democrats in the years ahead.  And the President encouraged them to draw on it as they continue to fight for the values that they've been fighting for not just the last eight years, but for most of the people in the room they've been fighting for for their entire career in public service.    Q    And you mentioned other areas.  What other issues did they talk about besides health care? MR. EARNEST:  There were a range of legislative issues that I think you would expect -- criminal justice reform, immigration reform, infrastructure -- some of the other issues that Democrats are likely to be working on over the next couple of years. Q    To go back to the question of what he wants Democrats to do when it comes to health care, once the law is repealed, would he like Democrats to negotiate with Republicans to come up with a replacement?  Or would he like them to refuse to negotiate and just leave Republicans to be the ones to come up with a replacement on their own, since they didn’t vote for it in the first place and they're the ones that are anxious to repeal it? MR. EARNEST:  Well, let me start out by answering your question by making a little news and saying that I agree with Congressman Rand Paul -- or Senator Rand Paul -- I just gave him a demotion -- Senator Rand Paul on something.  Senator Rand Paul wrote an op-ed in which he indicated that the people who repeal the Affordable Care Act are going to assume the blame for the chaos that ensues.  That's true.  And that's not a direct quote from his op-ed, but I think that is a faithful representation of what he wrote.   And I do think that's an illustration of something you've heard the President talk about quite a bit since November 9th, which is that there's a difference between delivering a poll-tested, sound bite-packaged promise on the campaign trail, and actually delivering on that promise once you assume the responsibility to govern the greatest country in the world.  And there is no better example than the Republicans who -- and I'm not just talking about the President-elect here, I'm talking about Republicans in states all across the country who have spent years excoriating the Affordable Care Act and vowing to do everything that they possibly can to repeal it.   The time has now come for them to consider how they're going to make good on that promise.  Republicans are in charge of the House of Representatives.  Republicans are in charge of the United States Senate.  And starting on January 20th, Republicans will be in charge of the White House.  And they’re going to have to decide how to make good on that promise to repeal and replace.  The challenge is, is that there are a lot of people in the great state -- the Commonwealth of Kentucky who are strong supporters of Senator Rand Paul, whose livelihood and, in some cases, life depends on the health care they receive from Obamacare, whether that’s expanded Medicaid or insurance that they’ve purchased in the marketplace run by the Commonwealth of Kentucky. So you could understand why Rand Paul would have some anxiety about this plan -- about this strategy that’s put forward by Republicans, and the anxiety is palpable.  One of the most articulate Republicans on Capitol Hill is the Speaker of the House, and he did a news conference today where he was unable to explain why Republicans have not put forward their replacement plan.  He’s a smart guy, he’s spent years thinking about this.  He’s smart when it comes to politics, he’s smart when it comes to policy.  We’ve got profound differences and he’s got a different point of view, but there’s nobody that questions his intellect.  And even he can’t articulate exactly why they aren’t putting forward a replacement plan.  That does not bode well for Republicans making good on this promise.  But we’ll see. One other reason, and this is something that the President did discuss with Democrats on Capitol Hill, and one of the reasons that this is particularly hard for Republicans, including Republicans who represent states like West Virginia and Kentucky, Tennessee -- not typically states that you consider as bastions of Obama supporters -- but these are states that have many communities that have been ravaged by the opioid epidemic.  Expanded Medicaid and health insurance that people purchase through Obamacare marketplaces offer support and service and treatment to people who are being ravaged -- or to people who are addicted to opioids and are trying to beat that addiction. And we know that this is an issue that Republicans care about.  Republicans, at the end of last year, were bragging about a piece of government spending that they had passed to increase support for treatment for people who are fighting opioid addiction.  The worst way to fight the opioid crisis is to strip away health care from millions of Americans who rely on it. A similar argument could be made about cancer research.  That was also included in the package that Republicans were bragging about passing at the end of last year.  What good is it to invest billions of dollars in cancer research if you’re going to prevent millions of Americans from being able to get a check-up once a year?  We don’t need to do a bunch of intensive academic research in cancer to understand what kinds of screenings are important and how important those screenings are, particularly for people of a certain age, a certain demographic, and a certain medical condition. So these are the kinds of complexities that Republicans are now responsible for because they’re responsible for governing a country of 300 million people.   And so to go back to your more direct question -- and I think this is the other element of the answer that the President offered to Democrats -- is something that you’ve heard him say before -- in fact, since the day that he signed the Affordable Care Act into law -- which is the President believes that the country would benefit from Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill actually having a conversation about ideas for strengthening and improving the Affordable Care Act.   The President has never made the argument that the Affordable Care Act is perfect.  It’s done a whole lot of good for people, it saved lives, but it could be improved.  But that’s never the offer that Republicans have put forward.  Democrats have put it forward.  The President himself has put forward ideas for how to strengthen and improve the program, but there’s never been a willingness on the part of Republicans to do that.   If Republicans changed their tune, recognizing these complexities, and say, all right, Democrats, we acknowledge that tearing this thing down is not going to be good for the country and is a little more politically complicated than we anticipated, but you guys got to admit that there are some things that we can do to improve this proposal, that’s a conversation of an entire different color.  And that is a conversation that the President encouraged Democrats to consider engaging Republicans on, but that would require a different approach on the part of Republicans, but it’s a change in approach that President Obama would welcome.   You’d have to talk to Democrats on Capitol Hill what their reaction to that would be.  I suspect they would say it depends, but I think even if they say it depends, that does indicate that they’re open to it. Ayesha. Q    You talked about the -- going back to the health care meeting -- you talked about the importance of Democrats sticking together.  At least one Democrat Senator, Joe Manchin, didn’t attend the meeting.  He felt like -- although he also criticized Vice President-elect Pence for having his meeting, but he did say that to have President Obama come that it was kind of like a poison pill that is going to hurt bipartisanship.  I mean, at this point, is there any consideration that having the President come out so forcefully saying that Democrats need to do this or do that regarding health care, that it does make this a more partisan issue?   And then also, when you’re talking about strategies, if the Republicans are unwilling to work with the Democrats, what exactly does the President envision them doing?  Should they take some of the Republican tactics and begin -- I don’t know if it would be possible -- like shutting down government or doing things like that to get these issues -- to stop the repeal of Obamacare?  Like what specifically can they do if Republicans don't want to work with them? MR. EARNEST:  Ayesha, I think a presidential critic would have to engage in remarkable rhetorical contortions to try to make the case that the President is the one who had made health care a partisan issue.  When you consider that the President hosted a meeting at the Blair House with Democratic and Republican leaders in Congress trying to get them to come together around some basic principles of health care reform, when you consider that the essence of the Affordable Care Act was cooked up by the Heritage Foundation and implemented successfully by a Republican governor in Massachusetts who, oh, by the way, happened to be the Republican nominee for President in 2012 -- that's been the approach that the President has taken.   Republicans have voted 50 times strictly along party lines to try to repeal the bill.  So I think it's hard for anybody to suggest -- seriously, at least -- that somehow the President has made this a partisan issue.  In fact, I just indicated the President is continuing not just willingness but desire to see Democrats and Republicans come together around some ideas to strengthen the bill. With regard to Democratic unity, I can't speak to Senator Manchin’s schedule, but I've heard him speak about why repealing Obamacare would be a terrible idea for hundreds of thousands of people in the state that he represents in the United States Senate.  He agrees with the President and the Democrats in Congress, and is showing the same kind of concern that even people like Rand Paul are showing about the impact of repealing the bill. So, again, you’ll have to ask -- I guess I would say it this way:  I would welcome the standard of Democratic unity being whether or not Senator Manchin agrees about the repeal of the Affordable Care Act.  I think that he would say what the President has said, which is that it can be improved, Democrats and Republicans should work together to improve it, but the idea of repealing it would be bad for the state and would have bad consequences for people all across the country. Q    And when it comes to specific strategies, would the President support Democrats kind of shutting things down, or like what type of specific strategies could they take on if the Republicans don't --  MR. EARNEST:  Look, the President acknowledged in his meeting with the legislators that he’s not the one who is the expert in legislative mechanics, so he didn’t have any specific tactical advice for Democrats up there.  But the President believes that these are principles that are worth fighting for; that health care is not a privilege -- access to quality, affordable health care is not a privilege, it's a right; that the policies that limit the growth in health care costs for workers, for families, for business owners, and for the United States government is a good thing and something that should be protected; that people shouldn’t be discriminated against because they have preexisting conditions; that women shouldn’t be charged more by the insurance company just because they’re women; people shouldn’t have to worry about having to declare bankruptcy just because somebody in their family gets sick. Those are principles that are worth fighting for.  And there were a lot of nodding heads when the President made that point. Michelle. Q    You were asked about should Democrats work with Republicans, and you mentioned it would require a different tactic.  So are you saying that if the tactic remains repeal, then Democrats should not work on negotiating that? MR. EARNEST:  Repealing the Affordable Care Act would have devastating consequences for people all across the country, and it's not something that Democrats support, nor should they.  And we're seeing that a lot of Republicans are queasy about supporting it -- and they should be -- because of the obvious, tangible, direct consequences that that will have on the lives of millions of people across the country.  Twenty-two million people are going to lose their health insurance if the Affordable Care Act is repealed.  It's going to rip a hole in the deficit -- in the federal budget, and the deficit will go up if the Affordable Care Act is repealed.  That's not just my conclusion.  You can ask the CBO about that.   The implementation of the Affordable Care Act strengthened the Medicare trust fund and extended the life of the trust fund by 11 years.  Repealing the Affordable Care Act would roll back that progress.  And we've seen, since the Affordable Care Act went into effect, the slowest growth in health care costs in our nation’s history.   If Republicans want to go back to a day in which health care costs for everybody are skyrocketing, they can do that, but that's going to be bad for the economy and will create the kind of chaos that the American people will hold them accountable for. Q    You talked about Democrats, that they'd be willing to work with Republicans to improve Obamacare, but only if it's not repealed.  Is that right?  Is that what you're saying? MR. EARNEST:  Repealing the Affordable Care Act is not an improvement.  Looking for ways to design an increase in subsidies so that working families can get even more affordable access to health care that's available for purchase in the marketplace -- the President thinks that's a pretty good idea.  And that is -- subsidies is another word for tax cuts.  Ordinarily, you would think that would be something that Republicans would be able to support -- and not just able to support, enthused about supporting. But that's not the reaction that we've seen from them.  That's just one idea that the President has put forward, but it's the kind of idea that's rooted in trying to find compromise that the President has been committed to since the day that he signed the Affordable Care Act into law. Q    And you talked about Republican promises to repeal it, and now they're going to be -- they're going to have to be accountable for what comes next.  Today, Steve Scalise said that the President himself made promises that if you like your health care, you can keep it, and that he should actually be apologizing.  What's your response to that? MR. EARNEST:  My response is simply that the President's record on the Affordable Care Act speaks for itself.  And when the President-elect put forward his nominee to be the Secretary of Health and Human Services, Congressman Tom Price, I predicted that at some point in his tenure as the Secretary of Health and Human Services he will stand at this podium and be putting forward a plan that he believes is the right one for the country.  And I said at the time that it should be measured against the progress that President Obama has made in reforming our health care system.  And I feel strongly about that.   And whether that's expanding access for health care so that 20 million Americans have access to health care, reducing the uninsured rate in this country to all-time lows, limiting the growth in health care costs, preventing people from being discriminated against because they have a preexisting condition, preventing people from having to declare bankruptcy because somebody in their family gets sick, preventing women from being charged more for their health insurance by their insurance company just because they get sick, extending the life of the Medicare trust fund, reducing the deficit by $3 trillion over 20 years -- that's the standard that President Obama has set.  That is the way that the American people can and should judge the President's record when it comes to health care reform.  And it's a record that the President is enormously proud of, not just because of the politics, but because of the impact that it's had on the lives of millions of people all across the country.   That's what he came into office promising to do.  That's what he campaigned on nine years ago in 2008 when he was crisscrossing the country, was taking on the kinds of tough challenges that Washington had been ignoring for too long.  And Democratic and Republican Presidents for 100 years had tried, or at least considered trying to take on the notion of health care reform.  President Obama took it on and succeeded in getting it done, and he's enormously proud of that.  Q    He apparently did talk about some tactics, at least generally, saying that Democrats should adopt some of the things that the Tea Party did in opposing Obamacare and they should go out to town halls and things like that.  Can you expand on that?  I mean, what do you think that would accomplish?  And does the President intend to keep working on this, even after he leaves office? MR. EARNEST:  The President was making the point that Democrats need to place a priority on telling the story of people who benefitted from the law.  And there are lots of those stories to tell -- not just the 20 million Americans who got health insurance because of the Affordable Care Act that didn’t have it before, but the millions more Americans who are not being discriminated against because they have a preexisting condition, who are able to keep their child on their health insurance until age 26, who are not being charged more from their insurance company just because they're a woman.  These are the kinds of stories that we can tell.  Certainly the expansion of Medicaid has saved countless lives across the country.  And the President does believe that it would be an effective tactic, as this debate is waged inside the halls of Congress, to communicate with the American public about the stakes of this debate.   And the President feels strongly that this is a debate that Democrats can win because of the impact that repealing the law, as Republicans are vowing to do, would have on the lives of people in communities all across the country.  And that is something that shouldn’t just steel the spine of Democratic members of Congress; it's going to -- as I think is evident from Senator Paul's op-ed, it's going leave a lot of Republicans quite uneasy. Q    So are we going to keep hearing from President Obama on this after he leaves? MR. EARNEST:  Look, the President has been clear about his post-White House plans.  He's going to take a vacation, and he expects to be in a position that he can observe and follow the tradition that previous Presidents have shown, which is the country deserves an incoming President with an opportunity to go and lead the country in the direction that he believes is right, and this is a debate that will continue.  And the President also feels strongly that he's been on the national stage for more than eight years if you consider his national campaign to win the Oval Office.  It's time for the fresh blood.  It's time for the next generation of Democrats, and even some Republicans who share his values, to speak up and speak out.  It's time for them to get the spotlight.  It's time for them to have an opportunity to make that argument.  And the President believes that's important for the country.  It also ends up being important for the Democratic Party in terms of making sure that the next generation of Democrats is ready to take up the mantle.   Jordan. Q    I just want to follow up on that, because Congressman Cummings told a group of reporters after the meeting that the President made it "very clear that as a citizen he's going to lend his voice to this fight."  So that seems to contradict a little bit what you said.  So where's the gulf there?  And does he in some ways plan to speak out about this health care issue after he leaves office? MR. EARNEST:  Look, the President made clear his solidarity with congressional Democrats, and there's no doubt about that among anybody in the room.  But, yes, being a citizen is different than being the President of the United States or being an elected member of Congress.  And being a former President does necessarily give you a larger platform, but the President is hopeful that he'll be able to observe the kinds of standards that previous Presidents have in giving the next President the opportunity to succeed.   But look, the President has been pretty blunt about his approach here.  He's talked a lot, even while in office, about how important the office of citizen is both in terms of educating yourself about the issues and engaging in a democratic process.  The President will certainly do that.  And the President will be interested in supporting Democrats in Congress.  He stands with them in solidarity.  But there are some limits to what former Presidents typically do once they leave office.   Julianna. Q    Thanks.  Just to clarify on that, it sounds like on the one hand you're saying he's resigned to sitting on the sidelines and watching Republicans dismantle the Affordable Care Act, and the same time there's the community organizer in him that would be trying to lend a hand to the effort to salvage elements of the law.  So where does that exactly leave him? MR. EARNEST:  Well, listen, "resigned" is not at all the word that I would use.  I think it was evident from the Democrats in the room that the President feels quite passionate about all of these issues.  And the President is confident that the kind of argument that Democrats can put forward is a winning one.  So the President continues to be very confident, particularly on this issue of the Affordable Care Act, in the ability of Democrats to make the kind of argument that's going to resonate deeply with the American people.  And there's already some evidence that Republicans are uneasy about this, both as -- and so the two pieces of evidence that I cited today are the op-ed from Senator Paul and the inability of one of the most articulate Republicans on Capitol Hill to explain why Republicans don’t have their own replacement plan to put forward, even though he's the guy who's responsible for putting that plan forward.  So I think that is an indication that Republicans are already starting to reckon with the challenge of keeping this promise.   At the same time, the President acknowledges that he's leaving the national stage.  That's what the Constitution requires.  That's certainly consistent with his wife's preferences.  And it's going to be time for somebody else to pick up the mantle.  Does that mean that the President is any less committed to these issues than he was before?  Of course not.  But it does mean that the President expects to be in a position that he can observe the kinds of customs and courtesy, frankly, that was afforded to him by his predecessor. Now, the President has also been clear, and the President did discuss this in the meeting as well, that he's hopeful that this won't happen.  But if there are basic, fundamental American values that are undermined by a specific policy proposal, then he may feel the need to speak out.  But it is his hope, and I would say even his expectation, that that's not something that he will have to do.   And I think the other thing I want to point out here -- and I think this is relevant to the entire context -- what I'm trying to lay out and describe to you is the President's plans for the first year or two that he's out of office.  And President Obama is obviously leaving this office at a young age -- he's just 55 -- and I think that there's -- he still has a lot of ambition and a lot more that he would like to do.  Most of it he hopes he will be able to do behind the scenes in terms of continuing to stay true to his roots as a community organizer, and motivating and inspiring and even offering training to people who feel called in a similar direction.  He wants to make sure that public servants, or people who aspire to public office are people who can get trained in the fundamentals of community organizing.  He wants to make sure that young people around the world are exposed to the kinds of values and principles and norms and customs and traditions of the United States when it comes to democracy and citizen engagement and respect for all people, and even entrepreneurship.  These are things that the President has talked about as a President and something that he hopes to continue in his post-presidency. So I don’t want to leave you with the impression that there's still not a lot of important work for former President Obama to be engaged in -- there is.  He recognizes that.  And he's got a long to-do list.  But that is different than being engaged in the same back-and-forth that he's responsible for engaging in as President. Q    So you're saying he has not closed the door to, let's say, over the next six months to a year, if he sees the direction of the Affordable Care Act, or whatever it would be replaced with, moving in a way that he is not comfortable with, that you said he feels like it doesn’t hold up to certain American values, that he would lend his voice in some way or another to that debate? MR. EARNEST:  Look, I think the President's hope and expectation is that he will be able to allow others to take up this mantle -- with his strong support -- to carry this fight, and to do so publicly and engage in the back-and-forth.  And that's the expectation that he has and that's what he intends to pursue. And I think that is the best description of his plans.  And, yes, I acknowledge that that stops short of entirely ruling out any sort of contingency that may prompt him to speak out publicly.  And I'm being intentional about that.  But I want to be clear that the President does not envision routine, regular engagement on these issues publicly.  That's the responsibility of Democrats in Congress; it's the responsibility of the next generation of Democrats.  And, look, it's a remarkable opportunity.   So I go back to the way the President began his remarks to Democrats today.  They’re on the playing field fighting for the issues and priorities and values that this party and this country has long stood for.  And there’s nobility in that.  And he admires those who are willing to do it.  He is extraordinarily proud of the way that they are choosing to fight for those values and those priorities, and he will stand with them as they do it.  But ultimately it's a fight that they will lead. Ron. Q    Specifically, the Republicans talk about the soaring premiums and triple-digit increases in places, and high deductibles that make the policies in some cases somewhat useless because of these costs.  Now, I think your argument has been that subsidies and tax credits sort of illuminate that argument.  What’s the truth here as far as you're concerned?  Because again, there have been premium increases.  There are high deductibles.  And the other one they argue about is choice being limited.  So what are your numbers about premiums and deductibles specifically? MR. EARNEST:  Well, obviously, this is the kind of debate that we welcome and one that I think leaves Republicans uneasy, because -- and let me explain to you why.  When we're talking about premium increases, it's important to note that the vast majority of Americans get their health insurance through their employer, and premium increases -- Q    Right.  3.8 percent or something.   MR. EARNEST:  Just 3.4 percent.   Q    Sorry. MR. EARNEST:  That's okay, I've got the numbers in front of me; I've got an advantage.  So it's important that the vast majority of Americans have benefitted from the law because we know that the Affordable Care Act has had a positive impact in keeping the growth in those health care costs low for the vast majority of Americans.   So there is a smaller group of Americans that doesn’t get health insurance through their employer.  And before the Affordable Care Act went into effect, these were people who didn’t have access to health care, or the only health care they had access to was health care that was riddled with loopholes that didn’t actually provide the kind of protections the insurance companies promised.  So what the Affordable Care Act did is it essentially established a marketplace and said this is the benchmark for policies that can be sold publicly.  So people had access to quality health care. Now, the question is you’ve got that benchmark and so there’s quality health care that's available for people who don't get health insurance through their employer -- how do we make it affordable.  And the way that we make it affordable through the Affordable Care Act -- the aptly named Affordable Care Act -- is that more than 70 percent of the people who go shopping at that marketplace of quality plans will get assistance, subsidies, from the federal government that will allow them to purchase those plans for less than $100 a month.   That's a good deal.  That's about the cost of a cellphone.  It's not free, but it's a good deal.  And it does give them access to health care that they didn’t previously have.   The question is, for the three in ten, or less than three in ten Americans who don't get health insurance through their employer -- so this is a minority of the minority -- there has been a lot of volatility in some markets with health insurance.  And so the question is, what do we do for those people?  The President has put forward some ideas.  One of the ideas that he’s put forward is to expand subsidies and make it easier for more people to get access to subsidies, or higher subsidies, so that more people can get access to that affordable health insurance. Another idea that the President had put forward is -- Q    But that essentially raises the numbers, right?  The government cost raises -- does it not? MR. EARNEST:  It potentially could, but we’d be happy to -- Q    And that's the argument against this, that it's more government involvement, that it costs more.   MR. EARNEST:  More government involvement only to the extent that it is providing tax credits to Americans to make it easier for them to choose which health insurance they would like to buy.  So I don't buy the argument that it is more government involvement.  I do understand the argument that it is more government spending.  But it's a paltry increase when you consider that over the next two decades the Affordable Care Act is going to reduce the deficit by $3 trillion.  So the increase in subsidies and the cost of doing so is a drop in the bucket when you consider the long-term deficit decrease associated with the Affordable Care Act. Q    So why, if you take yourself away from this for a minute -- not too far away but -- (laughter) -- MR. EARNEST:  Sometimes I would like to.  (Laughter.)  Q    You will soon.  And you just said something about how the President feels very confident that they have an argument that will resonate with the American people.  Well, it didn’t in the election clearly.  And you would say that this was, in many ways, the defining and animating issue for the Republicans -- repeal.  How does the President explain that, this distance? MR. EARNEST:  Because there is a difference between campaigning and governing. Q    No, no, no, I get that -- MR. EARNEST:  Right?  So it is easy to go and stand on the campaign trail and make a bunch of promises about repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act.  It’s another thing altogether to come into office and be responsible for the 22 million people who will lose health insurance if you do that. Q    So you’re saying it’s just a failure of messaging?  This is the Democrats' and the President’s, perhaps, failure to show up every place, as he says, and go to Iowa a hundred times and all?  I mean, is that -- because you still argue on the merits.  You think if you look at the numbers that this argument about premium increases and deductible increases, it’s just not there, it’s just not true. MR. EARNEST:  I think the argument is, simply, that Republicans are the ones who now bear the burden of explaining how the American people are going to benefit from their ideas.  And yes, Democrats have shown how difficult that is.  But we’ve been willing to pay that political price to make a difference in the lives of millions of Americans across the country, and we’ve got a good argument to make because we’re right on the merits. So not only does the complexity make it harder for Republicans to actually explain what impact their policies would have.  There’s also the rather inconvenient fact that the Republicans ideas are actually bad for people.  They’re bad for the economy.  They’re bad for small businesses who are trying to pay for insurance for their employees.  They’re bad for people who have to purchase their insurance through the market.  They’re bad for people who have to purchase their insurance, or get their insurance through their employer.  They’re bad for the U.S. government that will see the deficit skyrocket if Republicans follow through on their plan to replace the Affordable Care Act. So as complicated as it’s been for Democrats to make a compelling case about the positive impact of our plan, it’s going to be even more complicated for Republicans, not just because they have to delve into the complexity, but because they have bad ideas.  And trying to convince people, in the space of that complexity, that their bad ideas are actually good is going to make it even harder for them.  And when you consider how wrapped around the axle they are on day one of the new Congress, I think that would explain some of the President’s confidence. Steven. Q    Josh, since you’ve been to the podium, the Senate has passed the budget resolution.  Senator Paul voted against it, but there were 51 votes --  MR. EARNEST:  Boy, that is a pretty narrow margin, isn’t it? Q    So what do you make of it? MR. EARNEST:  Yeah, well, I make of that -- well, first of all, the bill they passed today, this suggestion to instruct Congress -- you know the lingo better than I do; I haven’t worked on Capitol Hill.  But essentially, this is the first step in that process.   The actual vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act is one that’s coming.  And I anticipate a vigorous debate between now and then, particularly when you consider that when -- some of colleagues here in the White House have had a little more experience working on Senate campaigns than I do -- but it sounds like 51 Republican senators may have cast the deciding vote to take away health care from 22 million Americans.  They may have cast the deciding vote to blow a hole in the deficit.  They may have cast a deciding vote to shorten the lifespan of Medicare and to weaken it by a decade or more.  They may have cast the deciding vote to take away protections that prevent people from being discriminated against because they have preexisting conditions.  You see where I'm going here.   And Senator Rand Paul looks like he's eager to avoid being on receiving end of those critiques.  And he's not a particularly vulnerable incumbent -- at least yet.  We'll see.  Thank you for the opportunity to answer the question. Jennifer.  Nice to see you.  Welcome to the White House. Q    Thanks.  So Julian Assange from WikiLeaks -- what's the administration's current assessment on him?  Should he be considered as credible or should he be considered a criminal or a fugitive.  What's the assessment? MR. EARNEST:  The assessment I think that I can share is the assessment that was put forward by the intelligence community -- all 17 agencies of the intelligence community -- on October 7th, 2016.  And it said in part this -- I'm just going to directly quote from them:  "The recent disclosures of alleged hacked emails on sites like DCLeaks.com and WikiLeaks, and by the Guccifer 2.0 online persona, are consistent with the methods and motivations of Russian-directed efforts.  Mr. Assange, of course, is famously in charge of WikiLeaks.  So I think that's a pretty definitive statement from the 17 different agencies of the United States government that deal in intelligence.  And this is an assessment that they put out back in October before the election.   Lalit. Q    Thank you, Josh.  I wanted to ask you a question, basically a follow-up on the retweet done by the U.S. Ambassador to India, Richard Verma.  In the retweet, he has tweeted a two-and-a-half minute video of three (inaudible) in Mumbai, and (inaudible) offering the job of a class teacher to President Obama after he retires on January 20th.  Has the President seen it?  Is he planning to take up that offer?  MR. EARNEST:  Lalit, I have to admit I have not seen the retweet, but why don't we take a look at it and we'll get back to you with an answer, okay? Q    And when the President hands over his mantle to Trump on January 20th, what are the things he would like Mr. Trump to do when he becomes the President on the front of India-U.S. relationship? MR. EARNEST:  Well, the President has -- President Obama has invested deeply in strengthening the relationship between the United States and the world's largest democracy in India.  And the President believes that there are profound national security, diplomatic and economic benefits for strengthening those ties.  So I haven't heard the incoming President articulate what ideas he has for the relationship between the United States and India, but President Obama has certainly found that relationship one that's worth investing in.  And he certainly is optimistic about the ability to strengthen the United States economically and to enhance our influence around the globe by strengthening our relationship with India. Kevin. Q    Thanks, Josh.  Following the Senate vote there, on the Donald Trump tweet about the delay in the intel briefing until Friday, is that an accurate description of how --  MR. EARNEST:  It's not. Q    Can you sort of explain that process, and I don't know if you can explain why he said what he said. MR. EARNEST:  I can't.  And fortunately, that's not my job.  What I can tell you is that the intelligence community has been working at the direction of the President to put together a report that reflects their consensus view about malicious cyber activity in the context of the 2016, 2012, and 2008 presidential elections.  This is only a month or so ago that the President directed the intelligence community to work on this report, and he asked them to produce this report before he leaves office on January 20th.  I can tell you that the intelligence community will make good on meeting that deadline with some time to spare.  And based on what I’ve been told by the intelligence community, they have not encountered any delays in producing that report. One of the other notable things is that the President didn’t just -- in addition to directing them to compile the report, the President directed the intelligence community to both brief the contents of the report to relevant members of Congress on Capitol Hill and to the President-elect and his team to make sure that they understood exactly how serious this is.  So that’s something that the President directed the intelligence community to do, and I’m confident that they’ll make good on that promise as well. I think the real question that looms is a question that’s been raised by some of the public comments or tweets from the President-elect, which is just simply, who are you going to believe?  On the one hand, you’ve got the Russians and the aforementioned Mr. Assange.  On the other side, you’ve got the 17 intelligence agencies of the United States government, outside cyber experts that have taken a look at this situation, you’ve got Democrats on Capitol Hill, you’ve got Republicans on Capitol Hill, and at least one adviser to Mr. Trump expressing concern about Russia’s malicious activity in cyberspace in the context of the election. So there’s a pretty stark line that’s been drawn, and the President-elect will have to determine who he’s going to believe.  And the decision that he makes about that I think will have long-term consequences for the way he chooses to govern the country. Q    How confident are you that that report will make its way to the hands of lawmakers before the end of this week? MR. EARNEST:  I don’t have a timeframe to set on it, but I can tell you -- I can confirm that the intelligence community will meet their deadline of January 20th with ample time to spare. Q    Is it fair to say that the President’s trip to the Hill today was also, in part, to preserve and protect his legacy, not just the Affordable Care Act but also to encourage Democrats to fight for the many pieces of legislation, executive orders -- to really uphold his vision and their vision, presumably, moving forward?  Is it fair to characterize his trip to the Hill in that way? MR. EARNEST:  I think the way that I would characterize the President’s trip to the Hill is it was an opportunity to say thank you to Democrats in Congress who have been fighting shoulder-to-shoulder with him to move the country in a direction that’s more fair, that’s more just, that’s more prosperous, and that’s more safe.  And over the last eight years, they’ve made remarkable progress in doing that.  And the President has spoken on many occasions about how much of that progress would not have been possible without the tenacity and courage and passion and commitment of Democrats in Congress.  And so he wanted to say thank you, not just in terms of how appreciative he is for their cooperation and their collegiality, but also to thank them on behalf of the country for the progress that we have made.  But he also went up there to encourage them, and to motivate them, and to inspire them that even as he leaves and even as somebody who has not committed to working with Democrats on Capitol Hill enters the White House, that Democrats have a set of values and an agenda that’s worth fighting for.  And Democrats have the benefit, the advantage of being strongly unified around that agenda and around those values, and that will serve them very well because Republicans aren’t.   Republicans on Capitol Hill aren’t unified, and they don’t appear to be particularly unified when it comes to a bunch of priorities that are being decided by the incoming President-elect, including on the issue of Russia’s malicious cyber activity and their interference in our democracy.  So that is an advantage that Democrats have, it is an advantage from which they should draw strength, and it is an advantage that I think will serve them very well in the years ahead as they do fight for a set of priorities that President Obama has been trying to advance for the last eight years. Q    Given that, last question, is it then fair to say that he is not concerned at all about his legacy, about a dramatic change happening here in Washington once he leaves office?  Or would you take the opposite view that he is concerned about a great many of the ideas that he had will be, frankly, undone? MR. EARNEST:  I think the President is concerned about the impact that Republicans would have if they made good on their promises to dismantle so much of the progress that we have made over the last eight years.  And his concern is rooted in the fact that millions of Americans have access to health care because of what President Obama and Democrats in Congress were able to achieve with the Affordable Care Act.  Rolling that back is going to have a negative impact on the lives of those 22 million Americans, but that’s what Republicans are promising to do.   Democrats in Congress and the administration worked effectively together to implement the Wall Street Reform legislation that has made sure that taxpayers will no longer be on the hook for bailing out big banks who make risky bets that go bad, and they implemented that in a way that the economy still thrived.  The stock market more than doubled since that bill was signed into law, and the President is pleased with that progress and is concerned about the impact that it would have on our economy if Republicans roll all that back. The same is true when it comes to a range of national security issues.  The same is true when it comes to investments in clean energy.  The same is true when it comes to investments in education.  So that’s what the President’s concern is.  And the truth is, the only people who -- well, I’d say it this way:  The people who are in by far the best position to prevent that from happening are congressional Democrats who are unified around the idea that those things are worth fighting for, and the President is confident that they will, and the President is confident that they’re going to have some success in doing it. Sean. Q    I wanted to follow up on one exchange you had with Michelle a little earlier.  You said that after the President has been on the national stage for eight years that “it’s time for fresh blood.” I take it you were referencing congressional Democrats, but does the President have satisfaction in the current ranks of the Democratic leadership given that there really hasn’t been much fresh blood there?  We see Charles Schumer moving up to majority leader in the Senate, but he was already a senior Democrat in the Senate, and the House Democratic leadership looks the same, at least at its highest levels. MR. EARNEST:  The reference that I was making there was certainly to congressional Democrats, but not just to congressional Democrats.   There’s an opportunity for mayors and governors and other people who aspire to elective office to make their voices heard.  It’s not just people who are in elective office who have a responsibility to speak out on the most important issues facing the country.  Citizens have that same kind of responsibility, and the President does believe that when he leaves the stage there will be big shoes to fill, and not likely by one person, at the risk of mixing metaphors.   And the President is hopeful, I would say even confident, that there will be Democrats in Congress and across the country who step up to answer the call to fight for the kinds of democratic values that are good the country, that make America more prosperous, that make America more safe, that make America more fair, and that will serve the country and the party very well. With regard to congressional Democrats, the President has deep respect and admiration for the ability of the congressional leaders that have been there the entire time that he’s been here for the last eight years.  But I think even those leaders would be the first ones to acknowledge they’re not going to be able to do it alone.  We’re going to need to see rank-and-file Democrats standing up and making the case, not just on ABC News, but back home, talking to their people in the communities and making the case to local newspapers and on local radio and on local television stations about what Democrats are fighting for and about what Democrats believe in and why it’s in the best interest of the people in those communities. So at one point during the meeting today -- I don’t remember who exactly it was -- one of the leaders had suggested that all the newly-elected members of the Democratic caucus should raise their hand to be recognized, and a lot of hands went up.  I’m sure somebody was taking attendance at the meeting; I wasn’t.  I don’t think that every member of the Democratic caucus was there.  I don’t think Senator Manchin was the only one who didn’t attend.  I don’t know what reasons they may have for that, but it sure looked like a lot of the people who were elected for the first time and are serving their second full day in office as a member of the United States Congress spent an hour and a half with the President today. And I think that’s a pretty good indication that the President’s words and message has resonated deeply with them, has certainly played at least some part in inspiring them to seek public office.  And I think that means that they’re more than energized for the fight ahead. Q    But as the President looked around at the Senate and the House Democratic caucuses, he must have seen that the numbers are a lot smaller than they have been in previous years.  And particularly after the wave election in 2010, a lot of this was a result of the political capital he spent on Obamacare, right?  That there was a wave back against the President for passing that legislation.  Does he at all acknowledge the political capital that was spent then and have any regret of some of the other legislative priorities he didn’t get through, like criminal justice reform, immigration reform, infrastructure -- those other things you mentioned earlier? MR. EARNEST:  Well, listen, I think there’s a lot of analysis that can be done of the 2010 election, and let me just stipulate that I disagree with the analysis that you put forward about that solely being a backlash against the Affordable Care Act.  I think the President would acknowledge that capital was spent in terms of passing and implementing the Affordable Care Act.  But to a person, I feel confident that Democrats would agree that it was worth it if that’s what’s required to get 20 million Americans covered on insurance.  If we’re going to outlaw insurance companies from discriminating against people with preexisting conditions or charging women more just because they’re women -- it’s worth it.  That’s the reason you got into the fight, that’s the reason you ran for public office in the first place.  It’s the reason that you chose to engage in public debate in the first place. So, yes, the President is proud of that and the progress that we've made as a result.  Does that answer your question? Q   Yes.  I have one quick other question.  So as far as the Russian hacks go, I know normally you can’t discuss sources and methods and how you guys are given intelligence, but can you at least characterize the sort of intelligence that’s coming in that proves that this was a Russian hack?  Is it digital fingerprints that you’re tracing back to a computer in Russian possession?  Is it human sourcing, that you’re intercepting phone calls and hearing Russians talk about this kind of thing?  Or where is the confidence coming from? MR. EARNEST:  Well, I’m obviously quite limited in what I can say from here, but I think there are a couple of things that I can point to that I think answer the questions that you’ve raised.  It’s essentially two. The first is, the statement that was issued by the intelligence community in October of 2016 before the election, making clear that Russia was interfering in our election represented the consensus view of 17 different intelligences agencies.  That’s not usually the way intelligence works.  That kind of unanimity of opinion, particularly when the stakes are so high, is notable.  The decision by the intelligence community not just to reach that conclusion, but to make it public, is notable.  And I think it reflects the depth of their confidence in that assessment. But your question goes to what explains the depth of that confidence -- why.  I think the only thing that -- the thing that I can certainly say from here is that there was a release last week of the Joint Analysis Report that was issued by the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI, and included in that report was specific technical advice to computer network operators, systems administrators across the country and around the world about steps that they could take to protect their networks from malicious Russian cyber activity.   I think that’s an indication that there was a deep technical analysis that was done.  And being able to put forward that technical analysis so that people could protect themselves from the Russians I think reflects the work that was done that pretty definitively ties this back to the Russians. The other effect of releasing that information means that Russia now has to go back to the drawing board and change some of their tactics.  If people who are responsible for defending computer networks are now aware of the places from which those attacks originate, if they're aware of the kinds of tactics that are used in erecting and executing those attacks, if they're aware of the kinds of software, the malware that is used and they can defend their networks against that malware, that's going to make things a lot more difficult for the Russians.  So that isn’t just an effort to erect defenses to repel malicious Russian activity, it's actually to set back Russian efforts to carry out those kinds of attacks. So I think that is an indication of the depth of the analysis that was done.  It's technical in nature, I would stipulate that from the beginning.  But I think it's an indication that the intelligence community is following more than their gut instinct.  And I think the way that you can tell that is based on the technical analysis that was put forward, and the demonstration of the conviction in their analysis by expressing their unanimous opinion publicly before election about what exactly happened.   Q    It sounds like, though, that you're pointing more to the digital fingerprint more so than human intelligence.  Is there any concern that that could be manipulated if somebody was so smart to manipulate the intel so that it made it look like it was Russia? MR. EARNEST:  I think what I'm pointing to is the one thing that I feel like I can point to publicly to substantiate some of the claims that we've made.  It doesn’t mean that there isn’t additional evidence out there; I'm sure that there is.  But there is a priority that's placed on protecting sources and methods.  And with regard to sort of this question about manipulating that kind of digital evidence, I felt confident based on that expertise and technical know-how of the United States intelligence community that that's something that they considered before putting forward that technical information and before putting forward their unanimous high-confidence assessment about what exactly happened. Bill Press.  Nice to see you, Bill.   Q    Thanks, Josh.  Nice to see you.  Happy New Year. MR. EARNEST:  Happy New Year. Q    I was wondering, having you had an opportunity yet to meet with or to speak with the person who's been designated as your successor at the podium? MR. EARNEST:  I did have an opportunity yesterday to meet with Sean Spicer, the gentleman that has been hired by the President-elect to succeed me as the White House Press Secretary.   Q    (Inaudible.) MR. EARNEST:  I was going to say, I believe that I had met Sean in passing previously at a social occasion, but this is the first time I had had an opportunity to sit down with him and have a conversation.  And yesterday, in my office, we sat down with him and his assistant, and Jen Psaki joined for that conversation, and we had a long conversation about what it's like to work at the White House.  And we certainly talked about some of the complicated logistics of working in this environment, but we also talked a little bit about the approach to the job that Jen and I have taken in fulfilling our roles at this White House.   And it was a good conversation, and I know that he's excited about the opportunity -- and he should be.  Getting to work at the White House is a genuine honor, and certainly having the opportunity to stand at this podium and speak to all of you, and engage in a debate about a set of issues that I certainly feel strongly about, and to advocate for a President that I respect enormously is a genuine honor.  And I think Sean sees it the same way, and he should. Q    It has certainly been a question among many of us:  Did the subject of whether or not he intends to hold daily press briefings come up in your conversation? MR. EARNEST:  I'll let him speak to whatever plans that he has.   Q    If it did come up or if it does come up, from your perspective, having been there now for, what, the last four or five years, what would your advice be about the importance or the wisdom of the daily press briefings? MR. EARNEST:  Well, the argument that I've made in the past is I think there is genuine value to the day-to-day engagement that I have with all of you.  The symbolic value of the President hiring somebody to play a senior role in his staff, to come out here every day on camera, on the record, and answer whatever question you guys dream up, and be an advocate for the policies that the President has prioritized and be held accountable for knowing what the President thinks, faithfully expressing his view, and being factual and accurate in making that case -- that's a healthy part of our democracy.  There aren’t many countries in the world that encourage this kind of engagement.  So I think it's genuinely a good thing. I think there are some aspects of it that are not as efficient as they may have been a generation ago.  Before iPhones and Blackberrys and email, there were many fewer opportunities for the press corps to interact with White House staff.  But the truth is, I think there's a lot of symbolic value to doing this, and it's good for the country, and I think the President believes that it serves his interest well to have somebody out here making an argument in support of his policies.  And I think it certainly serves your viewers and listeners and readers to hear firsthand from somebody at the White House who's willing to stand up here and put their name behind a forceful case and an explanation of what the President is doing and why he's doing it. But obviously the incoming administration will have to make up their own mind about the wisdom of pursuing a strategy that the President believes in because of its role in our democracy, but also because of the way that it's contributed to his success as President.   Dave. Q    Josh, Democratic leaders in the California legislature announced today that they've hired Eric Holder as outside counsel to represent the state in what they anticipate will be legal battles against the Trump administration.  Does the White House think it's appropriate for a former Cabinet member to get paid to fight the policies of a new administration? MR. EARNEST:  Well, I've seen only the headlines of some of the news reports that you're citing, and there's nothing that struck me in reading those reports that there's anything at all inappropriate about what Mr. Holder was choosing to pursue.    First of all, I'll say that it's not surprising to me at all that the state of California would want to choose somebody as smart and as experienced and well-versed in these policy issues as Mr. Holder is.  It's one of the reasons that President Obama chose him to be the Attorney General.  Obviously, Mr. Holder is a telegenic, articulate advocate for a whole set of issues, and I suspect that the people of the state of California will benefit from him putting those same skills to work, advocating for them.  And it doesn't strike me that there's anything wrong with it. Q    The President obviously has been very close to Mr. Holder over the years, considers him a friend.  Did he know about this?   MR. EARNEST:  I haven't spoken to the President about Mr. Holder's new job, but it's certainly true that the President holds Mr. Holder in high regard, both for his intellectual and legal abilities, but also because he's a pretty good guy. Jared, I'll give you the last one. Q    Thanks, Josh.  A couple different versions of the Affordable Care Act repeal being discussed.  On one hand, you've got reconciliation, which the Senate parliamentarian has ruled doesn't apply to all of the law but only certain parts of it.  And then you've got the Vice President-elect and Sean Spicer discussing today the possibility of executive actions that could be taken on day one.  Does the legislative team here at the White House have any sense of what could be done to the Affordable Care Act by executive action, and whether any of that would be, in this administration's mind, an improvement of the law? MR. EARNEST:  I am not aware of what the incoming team may have been referring to with regard to potential changes through executive action that they're looking at.  I think the thing that I can faithfully relate to you is that if we had conceived of a way for the President to use executive action to strengthen the Affordable Care Act, then I assure you we would have done it.  But look, I think we'll have to let the incoming administration provide some more insight into what their plans are before I can comment on it. Q    Do you think that it signals strength or weakness of the plan that executive action is one of the first out of the gate moves for this, or do you not have enough to go on? MR. EARNEST:  I think it's hard to discern at this point exactly what their plans are.  I just think that whatever changes they choose to make, they'll be held to a rather high standard for assessing the success or failure of those changes.  And we'll be counting on all of you to hold them to that standard. Thanks, everybody.  We'll see you tomorrow. END  1:54 P.M. EST

Выбор редакции
04 января, 20:42

Sorry, but Trump is Right: the Trade Deficit Matters

Never have I seen a political issue so susceptible to tricky conceptual sleight-of-hand and weasel arguments as America's trade mess. Specifically, our trade deficit. This deficit, which has fluctuated around the $500 billion per year mark for a decade, is real money, period. It is actual wealth that somebody pays to somebody else, and that somebody then owns and somebody doesn't. That's how money works. It isn't Monopoly money, "paper" wealth, a accounting fiction, or any other category of nullity. But free traders persist in explaining how it somehow, mysteriously, isn't real, doesn't count, doesn't affect anything important, etc. Case in point: Peter Navarro, the newly appointed head of Trump's National Trade Council, was just bemoaning it. But then he got attacked by people like Dan Ikenson of the "conservative" Heritage Foundation and Noah Smith of Bloomberg News. Navarro is right and his opponents are wrong. So it's worth reviewing, one more time, the inescapable basic logic underlying trade deficits, which makes clear why they can't not matter. Here's how trade works: Step 1) Nations engage in trade. Americans sell people in other nations goods and buy goods in return. "Goods" in this context means not just physical objects but also services. Step 2) One cannot get goods for free. So when Americans get goods from foreigners, we have to give them something in return. These things are represented by tickets called "dollars," but it's ultimately the things we trade. Step 3) There are only three things we can give in return: a) Goods we produce today. b) Goods we produced yesterday. c) Goods we will produce tomorrow. This list is exhaustive. If a fourth alternative exists, then we must be trading with Santa Claus, because we are getting goods for nothing. Here's what a) - c) above mean concretely: a) is when we sell foreigners jet airplanes. b) is when we sell foreigners office buildings in the U.S. c) is when we go into debt to foreigners. b) and c) happen when America runs a trade deficit. Because we are not covering the value of our imports with a) the value of our exports, we must make up the difference by either b) selling assets or c) assuming debt. If either is happening, America is either gradually being sold off to foreigners or gradually sinking into debt to them. Xenophobia is not necessary for this to be a bad thing, only bookkeeping: Americans are poorer simply because we own less and owe more. As I said, it's real money. Its effects - unemployment, deindustrialization, indebtedness - can be complex, and are debatable. But the underlying reality isn't going away. And yes (soon to be) President Trump should do something about it. -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

04 января, 19:20

Trump sides with Assange, Russia over U.S. intelligence

Ahead of his briefing on allegations of Russia election-season hacking, Trump mocks the intelligence community.

26 мая 2016, 05:11

Вице-президент для Дональда Трампа

Как только Дональд Трамп триумфально выиграл праймериз в штате Индиана и фактически обеспечил себе номинацию от Республиканской партии, заставив Теда Круза и Джона Кейсика сняться с гонки, журналисты и эксперты начали спекуляции на тему: а кто же будет его партнером на всеобщих выборах (как говорят в Америке, running mate), т.е. кандидатом в вице-президенты.

28 ноября 2014, 09:00

Фабрики мысли в США

Система аналитических центров представляет собой совокупность конкурирующих организаций, преследующих цель создания максимально объективной, достоверной, качественной информации, востребованной заказчиком, роль которого исполняют государственные, общественные и бизнес структуры. Указанные структуры в процессе подготовки и принятия политических решений выступают в качестве властных субъектов (субъектов влияния), и именно благодаря их запросам «фабрики мысли» актуализируются и становятся востребованными. Любая из перечисленных политических сил заинтересована в доминировании на информационном рынке, следовательно, структура «фабрик мысли» и их позиции на рынке информационных услуг обусловлены потребностями политических сил, с которыми они ассоциированы, и актуальной конъюнктурой этого рынка. Структура расходов США на НИОКР, % Источник: The FY 2012 Science and Technology R&D Budget. Office of Science and Technology Policy. Ex­ecutive Office of the President. Так, утрачивая декларируемую непредвзятость, «фабрики мысли» практически с начала своего существования подстраиваются под ту или иную авторитетную доктрину и в дальнейшем не имеют возможности ее изменить. Субординация по отношению к властному центру постепенно окостеневает, и организация становится фабрикой по производству программ и моделей их построения для конкретной политической группы. Этот довольно стандартный набор воззрений на природу «фабрик мысли» не носит ни полного, ни исчерпывающего характера, однако может быть принят в качестве отправной точки настоящего исследования. Такое исследование целесообразно осуществлять в кросс-национальном контексте. В противовес традиционной и широко распространенной концепции, рассматривающей «фабрики мысли» как результат прямой экстраполяции американского опыта развития аналитических организаций на самые разные страны независимо от их исторического, культурного и политического своеобразия, в данном исследовании предлагается концепция, основанная на мультимодельном подходе, который фокусирует внимание на различиях в институциональном оформлении «фабрик мысли» на национальном уровне. Более подробно особенности мультимодельного подхода будут показаны ниже при сравнении американской модели «фабрики мысли» с европейской и азиатской моделями. Ведущая и, можно сказать, пионерная роль в использовании «фабрик мысли» как инструмента разработки и принятия политического решения, бесспорно, принадлежит США, поэтому отталкиваться целесообразно именно от опыта данной страны. Анализ организационной модели «фабрик мысли», существующей в ней, может позволить выявить ключевые характеристики института, вариации которых в дальнейшем могут быть рассмотрены на примере иных стран, где «фабрики мысли» так или иначе существуют. Это важно, в частности, для России, где весьма актуальна потребность в выстраивании механизма адекватной аналитической поддержки принятия политических решений. ТРИ МОДЕЛИ ОРГАНИЗАЦИИ "ФАБРИК МЫСЛИ" В ГЛОБАЛЬНОМ КОНТЕКСТЕ Понятию «фабрики мысли» («think tanks») в современной политической науке даются разнообразные дефиниции и трактовки (в частности, распространены организационные, функциональные, структурные определения «фабрик мысли»). Автор исходит из того, что «фабрики мысли» — это разнообразные институты, занимающиеся изучением и анализом политических процессов и проблем, а также предоставляющие заинтересованным акторам (как собственно политическим, так и общественным и бизнес структурам) разработки и рекомендации по вопросам внутренней и внешней политики в целях принятия ими обоснованных политических решений. Финансирование федеральных исследований и разработок (запрос на 2014 фин. г.), млн. долл. Источник: Federal Research and Development Funding:FY2014. Congressional Research Service. July 30, 2013. P. 4. Тогда подлежит изучению не только та или иная наличествующая сегодня модель «фабрики мысли», но и ее генезис. Сложность анализа обусловлена невозможностью создания типичной схемы включения «фабрик мысли» в разработку политических решений, так как на нее воздействует множество политических, социальных, экономических и иных факторов, имеющих национальные или региональные особенности. Эти же факторы оказывают влияние и на часто принимаемую за «стандартную» институциональную структуру «фабрик мысли», которая в действительности всегда мимикрирует под окружающую ее социальную среду. Можно (сугубо схематически) выделить три основные модели функционирования «фабрик мысли»: американскую, европейскую и азиатскую. Разделение на модели само по себе является принципиальным, так как ранее дифференциация «фабрик мысли» проводилась преимущественно по критерию их большего или меньшего соответствия американскому образцу. Это обусловлено доминированием в литературе американских работ по «фабрикам мысли» и экспансией американских политико управленческих форм, хорошо заметной на примере Японии, Гонконга, Макао, Индии, Мексики и большинства стран Восточной Европы, в том числе России и Украины. Такой взгляд, среди прочего, приводит к безусловному доверию к американской исследовательской практике, как, например, в отчете «Non governmental Think Tanks in Ukraine: Capabilities, Challenges, Prospects», опубликованном Украинским центром экономических и политических исследований, ключевым источником для которого выступают, в свою очередь, отчеты Научно-исследовательского института внешней политики (Филадельфия, США). Такая ситуация характерна не только для Украины, но и для многих других развивающихся стран, осуществляющих некритическое заимствование иностранных институциональных и интеллектуальных конструктов. ОПЫТ США: ФОРМИРОВАНИЕ И ЭТАПЫ РАЗВИТИЯ "ФАБРИК МЫСЛИ" Опыт США показывает один из возможных вариантов истории становления «фабрик мысли», а также масштаба и результативности их деятельности. Американские «фабрики мысли» в указанном выше смысле исторически создавались прежде всего военными ведомствами, заинтересованными в разработке комплексной технологии аккумулирования информации — с привлечением гражданских специалистов, обладающих широкими познаниями в различных (в том числе политических) аспектах стратегического анализа. Схема расчета налоговых льгот в США Источник: Налоговое стимулирование инновационных процессов/ Отв. Ред. — Н.И. Иванова. — М.:ИМЭМО РАН, 2009. С.142 В 1956 г. по инициативе министра обороны США пять крупнейших университетов создали некоммерческую исследовательскую организацию под названием «Институт оборонного анализа». Менее чем за 10 лет институт вырос в крупное научное учреждение со штатом 600 человек. В 1960 е годы в США насчитывалось уже около 200 «фабрик мысли» самого разного профиля. Наиболее известными и влиятельными среди них были так называемые «финансируемые правительством центры НИОКР» (среди них RAND, Институт оборонного анализа, Институт военно морского анализа, корпорация «Aerospace»). Они напрямую поддерживались конгрессом США, который в конце 1960 х годов выделял им до 300 млн. долларов ежегодно. Необходимо подчеркнуть важный аспект в истории американских исследовательских центров. Руководство Пентагона изначально отказалось от создания аналитических центров внутри военного ведомства, хотя содержание независимых или частично независимых бесприбыльных (non profit) центров обходилось намного дороже. Заработная плата в «фабриках мысли» значительно превышала оклады государственных служащих. Руководство Пентагона исходило из того, что в результате опоры на «внутренние» центры пострадало бы качество научного консультирования, утратив широту и глубину охвата, присущие независимым научно исследовательским организациям. В конце 1970-х и начале 1980-х годов в США стал появляться новый тип «фабрик мысли». Это были идеологизированные, ориентированные на политическую активность организации, основанные, как правило, с целью продвижения определенных идейных ценностей или, точнее, образцов мышления. Среди них стоит выделить Институт Катона и Фонд Наследия — идеологически окрашенные организации, занимающиеся не отвлеченными политическими теориями, а пропагандой неоконсервативных идей в политической и особенно экономической сферах. В 1980-х годах такие центры были на подъеме своего влияния. С начала 1990-х годов в развитии американской политической мысли наметился поворотный момент, связанный с общесистемным сдвигом в международных отношениях.  Он привел к более четкому идеологическому оформлению различных «фабрик мысли»: обозначились как продемократические, так и прореспубликанские (более консервативные) институты, каждый из которых стремился продвигать собственную, по возможности уникальную концепцию, способную обеспечить аналитическую и консультативную поддержку принятия политических решений в новых условиях окончания «холодной войны» и превращения США в единственную сверхдержаву. Результатом стали бурные дебаты как в академической среде, так и в публичной сфере, однако практическая деятельность большинства подобных интеллектуальных центров в 1990-е годы сосредоточилась в основном на решении «прикладных» задач, то есть в большей степени на политической технологии, чем на выработке действительно инновационных концептуальных подходов. Прямое финансирование государством НИОКР, осуществляемых бизнесом и налоговое стимулирование инновационной деятельности Источник: OECD, Main Science and Technology Indicators (MSTI) Database, June 2012; OECD R&D tax in­centives questionnaires, January 2010 and July 2011, and national sources, based on OECD (2011), OECD Science, Technology and Industry Scoreboard 2011, OECD, Paris В плане же идеологических ориентиров в 2000-е годы американское экспертное сообщество все же преимущественно оставалось под влиянием консервативных идей, что в первую очередь связано с приходом к власти команды Дж.Буша. Следует констатировать, что вне зависимости от этапа своего развития «фабрики мысли» США всегда преследовали, строго говоря, одну цель: привлечение людей, способных генерировать идеи, к решению политически значимых проблем. При этом виды решаемых проблем, форма организации «фабрик мысли», заказчик, виды отчетности и т.д., естественно, различались. ОСНОВНЫЕ ХАРАКТЕРИСТИКИ АМЕРИКАНСКОЙ МОДЕЛИ Американский опыт создания «фабрик мысли» как специализированных организаций, занимающихся производством особого интеллектуального продукта — предлагаемого к реализации заказчиком политического решения, характеризуется несколькими основополагающими чертами: — правительство США неизменно демонстрирует заинтересованность в развитии «фабрик мысли» и расширении их научно исследовательского потенциала; — сами «фабрики мысли» создаются и функционируют преимущественно как неправительственные структуры, роль правительственных аналитических центров в сравнении с крупнейшими негосударственными «фабриками мысли» относительно второстепенна; — стремясь к диверсификации круга клиентов и партнеров, «фабрики мысли» тем не менее уделяют особое внимание поддержанию постоянных связей с государственными учреждениями. Рассмотрим выделенные характеристики подробнее. Правительственное внимание к развитию «фабрик мысли» подтверждается как заявлениями, так и практическими действиями представителей государственных структур. «Наиболее распространенная до настоящего времени среди членов федерального правительства точка зрения хорошо сформулирована в докладе, представленном в 1945 г. президенту Рузвельту Ванневаром Бушем, ученым, который возглавлял во время войны Управление научных исследований и разработок. Буш писал: „Основная политика Соединенных Штатов заключалась в том, что правительство должно способствовать достижению новых рубежей. Оно открыло морские просторы клиперам и обеспечило землей первых поселенцев. Налоговое стимулирование частных затрат на инновационную деятельность для крупных, малых и средних компаний в странах ОЭСР (налоговые субсидии на 1 долл. затрат на НИОКР) Источник: OECD Science, Technology and Industry Outlook 2012. P. 167. Несмотря на то что эти рубежи уже в значительной степени не существуют, рубеж науки остался. Более того, поскольку здравоохранение, благосостояние и безопасность входят в компетенцию правительства, научный прогресс представляет и должен представлять первостепенный интерес для правительства“». Реализация этого курса находит свое выражение в следующих обстоятельствах. Во-первых, в четкой дифференциации аналитических работ, установленной Национальным научным фондом, однако, что показательно, используемой не только правительственными, но и практически всеми иными структурами. Она включает три вида аналитической деятельности, а именно: — фундаментальные исследования — «изучение неизвестного». Такие исследования иногда называют ненаправленными, и они оказывают мотивирующее воздействие, выраженное в стремлении к знанию ради самого знания. Чарльз Э.Уилсон, первый министр обороны президента Эйзенхауэра, говорил о них как о деятельности, когда «...вы не знаете, что вы делаете». Примером мог бы служить химик, работающий с каким либо соединением просто для того, чтобы получить неизвестные до сих пор сведения об этом соединении. Он что то ищет, но что — не знает сам; — прикладные исследования — исследования, направленные на удовлетворение какой либо существующей потребности, например на создание лекарства от известной болезни или на нахождение новых способов повышения скорости самолета. Они опираются на фундаментальные исследования и, как правило, порождают дополнительные знания. Если продолжить наш пример с химиком, то нужно сказать, что он вступит в область прикладных исследований, как только предпримет попытки обнаружить, не позволяет ли изучаемое им соединение предупредить какое либо заболевание; — разработки — систематическое использование фундаментальных и прикладных исследований для создания и производства конкретных объектов (от сывороток до космических кораблей), систем, методов и материалов. Они обычно включают проектирование и эксперименты с неким изделием или процессом, но никогда — его непосредственное производство. Если, например, наш химик обнаружил бы, что изучаемое им соединение потенциально может использоваться в качестве противомалярийного препарата, то тогда разработки включали бы в себя очистку соединения, его проверку и подготовку к массовому производству. Во-вторых, в объеме финансирования «фабрик мысли». За период с 1957 по 1964 г., на который пришлось рождение самого феномена «фабрик мысли», общие расходы на них увеличились с 3 до 15 млрд. долларов. На пике популярности «фабрик мысли» в США — с 1960 по 1970 г. — на них было израсходовано более 150 млрд. долларов. Сегодня бюджет только одной RAND Corporation составляет 10-12 млрд. долларов в год. Показатель налоговых льгот на 1 долл. затрат на НИОКР Источник: Global R&D Report 2008 Magazine. P. 11; 2009 Global R&D Funding Forecast. P. 27. В-третьих, в структуре финансирования научной деятельности. Средства на поддержание научной деятельности предоставляются, конечно, не только федеральным правительством, но и колледжами, университетами, некоммерческими организациями и фондами, промышленностью (осуществляющей исследования и разработки как по собственной инициативе, так и в соответствии с заказами, полученными оттого же правительства), наконец, частными лицами. Однако, по данным П.Диксона сорокалетней давности, около 60% средств, направленных на эти цели, в то время предоставлялось федеральным правительством. По прошествии сорока лет такое распределение практически не изменилось и фактически стало модельным. Создаются же и функционируют претенденты на дележ этого «пирога» по инициативе не столько государства, сколько независимых от него структур. Так, бизнес среда порождает специфические «фабрики мысли» на базе исследовательских групп, действующих практически при любой крупной фирме (характерная их черта — высокая степень региональной привязанности, или анклавности). Впрочем, удельный вес социально и особенно политически референтных разработок в этой подгруппе американских «фабрик мысли» довольно низок. В массовом порядке «фабрики мысли» создаются при университетах. В 1969 г. количество таких центров составляло 5329; сегодня их число возросло примерно в полтора-два раза и иногда просто отождествляется с количеством кафедр в ведущих университетах. Впрочем, эту динамику следует скорее связывать с внутренним ростом самих университетов и их инфраструктуры, не смешивая со спонтанным образованием полноценных «фабрик мысли», число которых определяется прежде всего спросом и «естественным отбором». Как уже говорилось, в рамках американской модели правительственные аналитические центры играют — в сравнении с крупнейшими негосударственными «фабриками мысли» — второстепенную роль. Например, почти каждое федеральное агентство в правительстве США имеет свои собственные исследовательские учреждения, однако они заняты в большей степени техническим анализом, то есть сбором статистики и архивированием поступающих данных. Независимые «фабрики мысли» поддерживают тесные связи с государственными учреждениями. Правительственные акторы (как федеральные, так и местные) являются постоянными потребителями аналитических услуг: они нуждаются в широком спектре интеллектуальных продуктов, включая разработку долгосрочных планов развития той или иной отрасли и предложений по разрешению проблем текущей политики. Вместе с тем «фабрики мысли» сотрудничают с негосударственными фондами (такими, как Фонд Форда) и с бизнес структурами, заинтересованными в некоторых специфических видах аналитической деятельности (анализ рисков и возможностей в развитии компании, детализация рынка и т.п.). Вероятно, наиболее ярким примером этой «всеядности» американских «фабрик мысли» является история всемирно известной корпорации RAND. Предпринимательские расходы на НИОКР по отраслям в 2009 г., млрд. долл. по ППС Источник. OECD Statistics (http://www.oecd.org/statistics/). Будучи основанной в 1946 г. министерством военно воздушных сил США в сотрудничестве с авиакомпанией Douglas Aircraft, в мае 1948 г. организация приобрела статус независимого аналитического центра, перейдя тем самым из государственной в неправительственную сферу. Стартовый капитал для ее развития в этом качестве был предоставлен в том числе Фондом Форда. При этом, несмотря на смену статуса, корпорация сохранила налаженные организационные связи с государственными учреждениями, что позволило ей активно привлекать для собственных разработок экспертов как из правительственных агентств, так и из университетов и из частного сектора. «Фабрики мысли», особенно плотно взаимодействующие с правительством при сохранении формальной независимости от него, образуют, если можно так выразиться, «прогосударственный» сектор аналитических центров, отличающийся повышенным уровнем авторитетности. В нем больше всего отставных политиков, и он финансируется преимущественно за счет бюджетных средств. Одним из самых характерных примеров такой «прогосударственной» организации является Институт Брукингса. Эта организация была основана еще в 1916 г. бизнесменом и филантропом Робертом Брукингсом в качестве Института правительственных исследований (Institute for Government Research), причем одновременно Брукингс профинансировал также учреждение еще двух центров: Экономического института (Institute of Economics) и Школы Роберта Брукингса (Robert Brookings Graduate School). В 1927 г. эти три организации были объединены в единый Институт Брукингса. «В течение ряда лет влияние Института на правительство было значительным. Хотя он лишь в особых случаях работает непосредственно на правительство (и то только при условии, что работа будет не секретной и может быть опубликована), его исследованиям часто уделяют более серьезное внимание, чем исследованиям групп, пользующихся поддержкой федеральных властей. В прошлом он содействовал организации и разработке процесса составления федерального бюджета, сформулировал политику в отношении военных долгов и принципа тарифной реформы в 20-х годах». Одним из наиболее известных глобальных проектов Института была помощь правительству в разработке плана восстановления послевоенной Европы (European Recovery Program), подготовленного в 1948 г. и ставшего основой «Плана Маршалла» по реконструкции западноевропейской экономики. В начале 1950 х годов Институт был реорганизован и стал профилироваться по трем основным направлениям: экономические исследования, политические исследования (государственное управление) и внешнеполитические программы. В 1967 г. в партнерстве с федеральным правительством Институт начал реализацию долгосрочной программы под названием «Определяя национальные приоритеты» и в течение всех 1970-х годов получал заказы от правительственных департаментов, несмотря на напряженные отношения с Р.Никсоном. Количество исследователей на тысячу занятых, в эквиваленте полной занятости Источник: Factbook 2012. С началом в 1980 х годах эры рейганизма Институт вновь реорганизовался, в его составе появился Центр образования в области публичной политики (Center For Public Policy Education), который занимался в том числе и привлечением заказчиков для разрабатываемых Институтом проектов. Следующее расширение произошло в середине 1990-х годов, когда было учреждено несколько междисциплинарных центров, например Центр городской политики (Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy). С 2002 г. и по настоящее время президентом Института является Строуб Тэлботт, в прошлом один из наиболее значимых членов команды президента У.Клинтона. Об уровне эффективности Института Брукингса говорит тот факт, что в 2009 г. он занял первое место в глобальном рейтинге экспертно-аналитических центров мира, составленном Университетом Пенсильвании на основе опроса нескольких тысяч ученых и экспертов. Всего на звание лучшего исследовательского центра мира претендовали 407 организаций. Таким образом, можно заключить, что «фабрики мысли» в США представляют собой преимущественно самостоятельные организации, тесно взаимодействующие как с политической, так и с бизнес элитой. В большинстве случаев они приближены к власти, но не включены в нее, что позволяет сохранять объективность и в то же время дает возможность компетентного критического анализа правительственной деятельности. Миссия государства в большинстве американских «фабрик мысли» сводится к роли заказчика интеллектуального продукта и соучредителя (в некоторых случаях) той или иной организации, а также, что особенно важно, аналитика особого рода — сравнивающего тысячи исследований сотен фирм, извлекающего самую ценную информацию, делающего ставку на наиболее эффективные центры, но не отрекающегося от остальных. Впрочем, кроме «прогосударственных» организаций, в США можно обнаружить «фабрики мысли», не входящие в сферу влияния власти и находящиеся на «службе по крайней мере у части общественности». По идеологической окраске они сильно различаются, объединяющими же признаками для организаций данного типа являются следующие: — отвергается сама возможность принятия федерального финансирования; — результатам работы никогда не придается характер промышленной собственности; — результаты работы не привязаны к заказчику; — главной целью является оказание на общественность и правительство внешнего критического влияния; — обычная форма финансирования — субсидии благотворительных фондов, завещания, дары, иные общественные пожертвования и доходы от продажи публикаций. Расходы системы высшего образования на НИОКР Источник. OECD Statistics (http://www.oecd.org/statistics/). «Будучи независимыми от поддержки тех, кого они консультируют, эти „фабрики мысли“ находятся в уникальном положении. Они не присутствуют на закрытых заседаниях, где формируется политика, и в этом смысле их влияние ограничено. Поскольку их нельзя взять на службу и они ни от кого не зависят, их позиция очень выгодна для развертывания острой общественной критики и привлечения большей аудитории к участию в дискуссиях по основным политическим проблемам. Именно эта способность делать обсуждение вопросов политики живым, конкретным и открытым должна лежать в основе оценки „общественных фабрик мысли“». Одной из наиболее известных «прообщественных» «фабрик мысли» является Центр по изучению демократических институтов. Работа Центра состоит в ежегодно организуемых исследованиях, семинарах, учебных курсах и экспериментах. Среди наиболее заметных результатов его деятельности — подготовка масштабного проекта реформы американской Конституции, призванного «обеспечить соответствие Конституции современным условиям, политике и проблемам». По этому факту можно судить и о масштабах амбиций Центра, и о масштабах его реального влияния. В схематическом виде основные особенности американской модели взаимодействия «фабрик мысли» с их основными контрагентами отражены на рис. 1. Рисунок 1. Распределение интеллектуального продукта "фабрик мысли" США АМЕРИКАНСКАЯ МОДЕЛЬ В СРАВНИТЕЛЬНОМ АСПЕКТЕ: ПРЕИМУЩЕСТВА И НЕДОСТАТКИ Американская модель организации «фабрик мысли» обладает неоспоримыми достоинствами. Успешно пользующиеся заинтересованностью правительства США в развитии и расширении научно исследовательского потенциала, однако привлекающие, наряду с государственными, значительные ресурсы общественных и бизнес структур и умело маневрирующие ими, «фабрики мысли» в США представляют собой в высокой степени самостоятельные организации, приближенные к власти, но не включенные в нее непосредственно (в отличие от того, что часто имеет место, например, в российской ситуации). Такая «трехмерная» система способствует выработке адекватных управленческих рекомендаций, отвечающих критериям достоверности и функциональности. Система информационно аналитической поддержки, предоставляемой «фабриками мысли» США, является исключительно прагматичной. Прагматична даже сама структура типичной американской «фабрики мысли», сочетающая характерную для коммерческих организаций гибкость, присущее общественным организациям диверсифицированное финансирование и высокую степень «кадровой интегрированности» в научную, политическую и бизнес среду. Американская модель «фабрики мысли», по сути, является проекцией американской идеи демократии. Аналитические центры представляют различные группы интересов, действуют в системе рыночных отношений и доступны общественному контролю. Единственным, но значимым минусом американской модели является ее ограниченная применимость в иных социальных средах, особенно когда речь идет о «фабриках мысли» стран, относимых к европейской и азиатской культурным зонам. По мнению Д.Стоун, «в США влияние на формирование „фабрик мысли“ оказывают не только политические факторы, но и сильная филантропическая культура и благоприятный налоговый режим». Влияние филантропической культуры на функционирование «фабрик мысли» в США подчеркивается также в работах Д.Абельсона и К.Вейс. Внутренние затраты на гражданские исследования и разработки в России и зарубежных странах в расчете на одного исследователя Источник. Программа кандидата в президенты Российской академии наук академика В.Е. Фортова. Ос­новные направления развития Российской академии наук. Москва, 10 мая 2013 г. С. 27. Между тем ни в Европе, ни в Азии социальная среда не способна предоставить эффективную поддержку независимым «фабрикам мысли». В китайской практике в ряде случаев вообще наблюдается «финансовое подавление» независимости гражданских «фабрик мысли» через механизмы Национального научного фонда и прямого государственного заказа. Крайне мало (по сравнению с США) существует и специализированных налоговых послаблений, равно как и частных фондов, способных финансировать аналитические центры. Поэтому с конца 1990-х годов в ведущих странах Евросоюза и Китае наметилась тенденция к созданию собственных оригинальных моделей интеллектуального обеспечения политико управленческого процесса, в гораздо большей степени ориентированных на государство, нежели американская. Образцом европейских «фабрик мысли» могут служить так называемые «старт фабрики» («start up tanks»). Подобно своим американским аналогам, «старт фабрики» представляют собой независимые научно-исследовательские центры, деятельность которых направлена на поддержку принятия политических решений. Однако, в отличие от США, они создаются не гибким взаимодействием власти, науки и бизнеса, а их изначально жестко формализованной кооперацией, причем власть, как правило, представлена только молодым поколением, лишь начинающим свою карьеру и потому заинтересованным в интеллектуальном стимуле. Примерами «старт фабрик» могут служить Лиссабонский совет в Брюсселе или BerlinPolis. Еще больше отличается от американской азиатская модель «фабрик мысли». Наиболее показателен в этом плане опыт Китая, где три типа «фабрик мысли» образуют сеть информационного анализа и консалтинга, охватывающую практически все общество. В схематическом виде китайская модель формирования «фабрик мысли» отображена на рис. 2. Рис. 2. Три типа "фабрик мысли" в КНР В систему входят официальные институты, полуофициальные институты и гражданские исследовательские центры. Внешне возникает иллюзия некоего подобия американской модели, однако при формальном совпадении ряда ключевых акторов отсутствует развитая система фондового спонсорства и получения негосударственных заказов. «Фабрики мысли» в КНР используются официальными структурами прежде всего как поставщики проверенной и обобщенной информации о тех социальных группах, с которыми они связаны. Даже в Японии, стране, которая на протяжении нескольких десятилетий после второй мировой войны находилась в фарватере американской политики, была в итоге сформирована модель «фабрик мысли», отличающаяся от образца, существующего в США, хотя надо признать, что долгосрочное американское влияние наложило свой отпечаток на функционирование японских аналитических центров (как, впрочем, и на иные стороны японской жизни). «Фабрики мысли» в Японии, как и в США, занимаются в первую очередь специализированным анализом, причем преимущественно экономическим, поскольку глобальных политических амбиций Япония, по крайней мере официально, не имеет. Вместе с тем, в отличие от США, в Японии «фабрики мысли» стремятся не столько к независимости, сколько к максимально тесной кооперации с государственными институтами и бизнес организациями, обеспечивающей гарантии постоянного сотрудничества и востребованности. Таким образом, организационная модель «фабрик мысли», изначально родственная американской, все же подстраивается под специфику национальной политической культуры и социально экономической сферы. В КАКОЙ МЕРЕ ВОЗМОЖНО ЗАИМСТВОВАНИЕ АМЕРИКАНСКОЙ МОДЕЛИ В ИНЫХ НАЦИОНАЛЬНЫХ И КУЛЬТУРНЫХ УСЛОВИЯХ? Мультимодельный подход, в отличие от традиционалистского, в соответствии с которым американская модель трактуется как «чистая», то есть вообще не отягощенная национальной спецификой и потому применимая к любой социальной системе, предполагает рассмотрение «фабрик мысли» как организаций, обладающих не только институциональной, но и региональной и национальной спецификой. В свою очередь, соотнесение инновационных и автохтонных элементов, интегрирующихся в ту или иную устойчивую модель «фабрики мысли», позволяет скорректировать господствующий в литературе «панамериканский» подход к вопросу. Сопоставление расходов на НИР и НИОКР и количества статей в Web of Science в 2011 году по странам Источник. Москалева О.В. Можно ли оценивать труд ученых по библиометрическим показателям? // Управление большими системами. 2013. Специальный выпуск 44: «Наукометрия и экспертиза в управле­нии наукой». С. 327—328. В результате становится возможным констатировать взаимосвязь таких параметров, как структура аналитических центров, их информационный потенциал и достоверность рекомендаций, с одной стороны, и качество политических решений, принимаемых правительственными и общественными структурами, — с другой. Качество информационных услуг, представляемых «фабриками мысли», напрямую коррелирует с их независимостью, конкурентностью среды, вариативностью аналитических подходов, а также с национальной спецификой, делающей (или не делающей) институциональную структуру «фабрик мысли» органично встроенной в систему разработки и принятия политических решений. Отличительной чертой американских «фабрик мысли» является их включенность в механизмы принятия решений при сохранении высокой институциональной автономности от акторов, принимающих решения, а также от параллельно действующих экспертных центров. Несмотря на активные попытки заимствования американской модели, при организации аналитических центров в странах Европы и тем более Азии такой автономности удается достичь далеко не всегда. Сравнительный анализ позволяет определить пределы возможного заимствования — это преимущественно внешняя имитация, поскольку сохранение сути организации требует адаптации к местным условиям всех структурообразующих элементов. Более масштабная имитация, как ни парадоксально, ведет либо к утрате содержания деятельности, либо к падению степени независимости аналитических центров. Поэтому целесообразна комбинация заимствований, обеспечивающих адаптацию «фабрики мысли» к региональным условиям при сохранении ее «институциональной идентичности», подразумевающей, помимо прочего, и определенную степень независимости в сборе и проверке достоверности данных. Очевидно, что именно поиском такой комбинации и заняты все участники продолжающегося уже не первое десятилетие процесса конструирования центров политической аналитики в современной России. Вопрос о том, насколько она возможна и имеет шансы быть востребованной в рамках национальной политической культуры, остается, однако, открытым. http://rusrand.ru/analytics/analiticheskie-tsentry-v-politicheskom-protsesse-amerikanskaja-model-fabrik-mysli

19 августа 2014, 13:06

Экономика Гонконга: китайский хаб сбоит

 Изображение ShutterstockЭкономика Гонконга, согласно опубликованным на прошлой неделе данным, продемонстрировала снижение во 2 квартале впервые за последние три года. Гонконгский ВВП в апреле-июне опустился на 0,1% по сравнению с 1 кварталом с учетом сезонных факторов. Стоит отметить, что в предыдущий раз снижение ВВП Гонконга в квартальном исчислении было также зафиксировано во 2 квартале 2011 года, когда оно составило 0,4% г/г. Неожиданное падение экономики Гонконга во 2 квартале этого года отчасти может быть вызвано сезонным эффектом. 2 квартал для экономики Гонконга является традиционно слабым. В этот период по статистике отмечается самый слабый рост гонконгского ВВП в последние годы. В этом плане более корректным является оценка темпов роста ВВП Гонконга в годовом исчислении, которые составили 1,8% г/г относительно аналогичного периода прошлого года, что оказалось несколько хуже средних ожиданий в 2% г/г.Динамика ВВП Гонконга, США и всего мира Источник: Bloomberg, PSB Research Являясь крупнейшим финансовым центром и важнейшим торгово-транспортным хабом Китая, Гонконг играет очень значимую роль в мировых внешнеэкономических связях. В 2013 году Гонконг стал лучшей территорией для ведения бизнеса по версии Bloomberg. По данным Heritage Foundation и Wall Street Journal, экономика Гонконга - самая либеральная экономика в мире. Открытость гонконгской экономики, с одной стороны, является её преимуществом, а с другой стороны делает её слабой перед событиями, связанными с замедлением мирового экономического роста. Особенно это проявляется в периоды мировых кризисов, когда экономика Гонконга подвергается испытаниям иссякающего источника товаротранспортных потоков, которые и создают ей репутацию "опережающего индикатора", поскольку изменения в транспортной деятельности зачастую являются предвестником изменений в динамике ВВП.ВВП Гонконга в последние 10 лет растет со средним темпом в 3-4% г/г. Текущий официальный прогноз предполагает сохранение темпов роста гонконгского ВВП с тем же самым средним темпом в 2014-2018 годах.Средний темп роста ВВП Гонконга Источник: www.hkeconomy.gov.hk, PSB Research Однако отреагировав на проявленную экономикой во 2 квартале слабость, правительство Гонконга пересмотрело свой прогноз экономического роста по итогам 2014 года до 2-3% г/г против ранее прогнозировавшихся 3-4%.Снижение темпов роста экономики Гонконга в годовом исчислении в последнее время в основном обусловлено слабостью частного потребления и падением на 5,6% г/г уровня инвестиций. При этом рост потребительских расходов государственных учреждений, учитываемых в структуре ВВП, уже несколько лет находятся на уровне в 2-3% г/г.Гонконг: структура ВВП (потребление, инвестиции) Источник: Bloomberg, PSB Resear Отметим, что Гонконг входит в первую 10-ку в мире по объёму внешней торговли, причем совокупный объём экспорта (включая реэкспорт, который достигает 98% от экспорта) превышает ВВП Гонконга.Чисто психологически товар с надписью "сделано в Гонконге" кажется потребителям во всем мире более качественным, чем пресловутое "made in China". И даже зная, что львиная доля проходящих через Гонконг товаров по факту произведены в материковом Китае, многие компании предпочитают работать с гонконгскими предприятиями. Именно поскольку Гонконг является для Китая важнейшим транспортным и финансовым хабом, спад относительно небольшой экономики Гонконга может стать буревестником более серьезных проблем в мировой экономике, хотя говорить об этом по итогам одного сезонально слабого для ВВП Гонконга квартала преждевременно. http://www.finam.ru/analysis/forecasts/ekonomika-gonkonga-kitaiyskiiy-xab-sboit-20140819-1239/

20 марта 2013, 14:20

Технологию выведения 'высшей расы' Гитлер позаимствовал у американцев

Предлагаемая вниманию читателей статья принадлежит перу Эдвина БЛЭКА – автора книг, вошедших в список бестселлеров газеты «Нью-Йорк таймс»: «Ай—Би—Эм и Холокост» и только что вышедшая «Война против слабых» («Четыре стены, восемь окон»).Гитлер превратил в ад жизнь целого континента и уничтожил миллионы людей в поисках так называемой «высшей расы». Мир считал фюрера безумцем и плохо понимал мотивы, двигавшие им. Однако концепция высшей расы – белокожих блондинов с голубыми глазами – была сформулирована не им: эта идея разработана в Соединенных Штатах американским евгеническим движением на два—три десятилетия раньше Гитлера. Не только разработана, но и апробирована на практике: евгеники принудительно стерилизовали 60.000 американцев, тысячам запретили вступать в брак, тысячи насильственно выселили в «колонии» и уничтожили бессчетное число людей способами, которые до сих пор изучаются.Евгеника – американская расистская лженаука, направленная на уничтожение всех людей, кроме тех, кто соответствует заданному типу. Эта философия переросла в национальную политику посредством законов о принудительной стерилизации и сегрегации, а также брачных запретов, действовавших в 27 штатах.При оценке интеллектуальных способностей людей подлежащих стерилизации и составлении тестов по определению уровня интеллекта учитывались знания культуры США, а не реальные знания индивида или его способность мыслить. Вполне естественно, что по такого рода тестам большинство иммигрантов показали низкие результаты, и были признаны не вполне нормальными с точки зрения интеллекта. При этом совершенно не учитывалось влияние на человека социума и окружающей среды.Следует отметить, что исследовались не только характерные черты среди членов одной семьи, но и были попытки выявить черты, передающиеся по наследству внутри этноса. Так, евгенисты определили как хорошую кровь - кровь первых американских поселенцев, прибывших из стран Северной и Западной Европы. Они, по мнению евгенистов, обладают такими врожденными качествами, как любовь к науке и искусству. Тогда как иммигранты из Южной и Восточной Европы обладают менее благоприятным набором черт.Все это способствовало введению ограничительных законов для въезжающих в Америку и законов против смешанных браков между представителями разных рас и национальностей. В противном случае, как утверждали евгенисты, велика вероятность порчи американской крови.Но самой радикальной политической акцией евгенистического течения стало официальное разрешение стерилизации. К 1924 в США насчитывалось 3000 принудительно стерилизованных. Принудительной стерилизации подвергались преимущественно заключенные и умственно отсталые.В штате Вирджиния первой жертвой принудительной стерилизации была семнадцатилетняя девушка - Кэрри Бак. В 1927 г. ее обвинили в плохой наследственности, а значит, загрязнении американской расы. Основанием для обвинения Кэрри в нездоровой наследственности послужило то, что мать ее была в сумасшедшем доме, а сама девушка вне брака родила ребенка. Ее ребенок был признан социологом из ERO и медсестрой из Красного Креста по субъективному впечатлению ненормальным. Однако когда дочка Кэрри Бак пошла в школу, то выяснилось, что ее способности ничуть не ниже обычных, и девочка училась очень хорошо.Дело Кэрри Бак послужило прецедентом для стерилизации 8300 жителей Вирджинии!Мало того, разработки ERO использовала нацистская Германия. В 1933 году по американскому образцу гитлеровское правительство принимает закон о стерилизации. Это закон тут же перепечатывается в США, в "Евгенических новостях". На основании закона в Германии были стерилизованы 350 тыс. человек!Неудивительно, что руководитель ERO в 1936 году получает почетную докторскую степень в Гейдельбергском университете за "науку о расовой чистке" ("the science of racial cleansing").Гитлер усердно штудировал американские евгенические законы и аргументы и стремился утвердить в правах расовую ненависть и антисемитизм, дав им медицинское обоснование и снабдив псевдонаучной оболочкой. Евгеники не двинулись бы дальше странных разговоров, не имей они мощной финансовой подпитки со стороны корпорации филантропов, главным образом Института Карнеги, Фонда Рокфеллера и железнодорожного бизнеса Гарримана. Они входили в лигу американских ученых из таких университетов, как Гарвард, Принстон и Йель (прим. это как мы знаем гнездо масонской идеологии, выращивающее верных делу политиков и ученых), в стенах которых фальсифицировались и подтасовывались данные во имя евгенических расистских целей.Институт Карнеги стоял у колыбели американского движения евгеников, создав лабораторный комплекс в Колд-Спринг-Харбор на Лонг-Айленде. Здесь хранились миллионы карточек с данными простых американцев, позволявших планировать методичную ликвдацию семей, кланов и целых народов. Из Колд-Спринг-Харбор сторонники евгеники вели агитацию среди американских законодателей, социальных служб и ассоциаций страны.Из железнодорожной казны Гарримана средства переводились в местные благотворительные фонды – например, в нью-йоркское бюро промышленности и иммиграции – которые должны были выделить еврейских и других иммигрантов из общего населения для их последующей депортации, заточения в тюрьму или насильственной стерилизации.Фонд Рокфеллера помогал в создании и финансировании германской евгенической программы и даже субсидировал чудовищные исследования Джозефа Менгеле в Освенциме. В последствии Фонд Рокфеллера, Институт Карнеги, Лаборатория Колд-Спринг-Харбор и Институт Макса Планка (предшественник Института кайзера Вильгельма) предоставляли неограниченный доступ к информации и помогали в проводившихся расследованиях.Задолго до прихода в эту проблему ведущих американских филантропов, евгеника зародилась благодаря научному любопытству в викторианскую эпоху. В 1863 году сэр Фрэнсис Гэлтон развил такую теорию: если талантливые люди будут вступать в брак только с талантливыми людьми, их потомство будет заметно качественнее.На рубеже 19-20 веков идеи Гэлтона были занесены в Соединенные Штаты, когда были заново открыты законы наследственности Грегора Менделя. Сторонники американских евгеников считали, что концепция Менделя, объясняющая окраску и размер гороха и крупного рогатого скота, приложима к социальной и интеллектуальной природе человека. В начале 20-го века Америка зашаталась под натиском массовой иммиграции и широко распространившихся расовых конфликтов. Элитисты, утописты и прогрессисты, движимые скрытыми расовыми и классовыми наклонностями и одновременно стремлением улучшить мир, превратили евгенику Гэлтона в репрессивную и расистскую идеологию. Они мечтали населить планету белокожими голубоглазыми людьми нордического типа – высокими, сильными и талантливыми. По ходу этой работы они намеревались выключить из жизни черных, индейцев, латиноамериканцев, восточноевропейцев, евреев – кучно живущий народ с темными волосами, бедный и немощный. Как они собирались добиться этой цели? Путем выявления «дефектных» семейных ветвей и обрекая их на пожизненную сегрегацию и стерилизацию для уничтожения целых кровных линий. Программой максимум было лишение репродуктивной способности «негодных» – признанных слабыми и стоящими на низших ступенях развития.В 1920-е годы ученые-евгеники Института Карнеги установили тесные личные контакты с германскими фашистскими евгениками. В 1924 году, когда Гитлер писал свой «Майн кампф», он часто цитировал положения американской евгенической идеологии и открыто демонстрировал свое хорошее знание американских евгенических теоретиков и их фразеологии. Он с гордостью заявлял своим сторонникам, что твердо следует американскому евгеническому законодательству. Борьба Гитлера за супер-расу вылилась в безумную борьбу за Высшую расу, в терминах американских евгеников, когда на смену понятию «нордический» пришло «германский» или «арийский». Расовая наука, расовая чистота и расовое доминирование – вот что стало движущей силой гитлеровского фашизма.Нацистские врачи превратились в закулисных генералов в войне фюрера против евреев и других европейцев, признанных низшей расой. Они разрабатывали науку, изобретали евгенические формулы и даже лично отбирали жертв для стерилизации, эфтаназии и массового уничтожения. В первое десятилетие рейха евгеники по всей Америке единодушно приветствовали планы Гитлера, видя в них последовательное воплощение своих десятилетних исследовательских трудов.Дело, однако, не ограничивалось поддержкой ученых. Америка финансировала и помогала создавать германские евгенические институты. К 1926 году Рокфеллер пожертвовал 410.000 долларов (4 миллиона современных «зеленых») на работу сотен германских исследователей.В мае 1926 года, например, Рокфеллер выплатил 250.000 долларов Германскому психиатрическому институту, который стал Институтом психиатрии кайзера Вильгельма. Один из ведущих психиатров этого центра Эрнест Рудин позже стал его директором и, как полагают многие, был архитектором гитлеровской системы медицинского подавления. Еще в научном комплексе кайзера Вильгельма был институт исследования мозга. Грант в 317.000 долларов позволил этому институту построить основное здание и стать центром отечественной расовой биологии. В течение нескольких последующих лет этот институт получал дополнительные гранты от Фонда Рокфеллера.Институт мозга – тоже возглавляемый Рудиным – стал главной лабораторией и полигоном для смертельных экспериментов и исследований, проводившихся на евреях, цыганах и представителях других народов. Начиная с 1940 года тысячи германцев из домов для престарелых, психиатрических клиник и других опекунских заведений систематически подвергались удушению газом. В общей сложности было уничтожено от 50.000 до 100.000 человек.Особым адресатом финансовой помощи от Фонда Рокфеллера был Институт антропологии, человеческой наследственности и евгеники кайзера Вильгельма в Берлине. Если американские евгеники в течение десятилетий только стремились получить в свое распоряжение близнецов для исследований в области наследственности, то германский институт получил возможность проводить подобные исследования в беспрецедентных масштабах.В то время, когда Рокфеллер делал свои пожертвования, главой Института антропологии, человеческой наследственности и евгеники был Отмар Фрайхерр фон Вершуер (Otmar Freiherr von Verschuer), звезда американских евгенических кругов. В первые годы работы Вершуера на этом посту финансирование Инстиута антропологии велось Рокфеллером напрямую, а также через другие исследовательские программы. В 1935 году Вершуер ушел из Института, чтобы создать евгенический центр во Франкфурте. Исследование близнецов в третьем рейхе шло блестяще при поддержке правительства, издавшего декрет о мобилизации всех близнецов. Примерно в то время Вершуер писал в «Дер Эрбартц», евгеническом медицинском журнале, редактором которого был он сам, что германская война приведет «к тотальному решению еврейской проблемы».10 мая 1943 года давний помощник Вершуера Джозеф Менгеле приехал в Освенцим. Менгеле отбирал близнецов прямо из транспортов, прибывающих в лагерь, проводил над ними зверские эксперименты, писал отчеты и посылал их в институт Вершуера для анализа и обобщения.Как писала газета «Сан-Франциско Кроникл» («The San Francisco Chronicle») в 2003 году:«Идея о белой, светловолосой, голубоглазой господствующей нордической расе родилась до появления Гитлера. Концепцию создали в Соединённых Штатах и взращивали в Калифорнии десятилетиями до прихода Гитлера к власти. Калифорнийские евгеники играли важную, хотя и малоизвестную, роль в американском евгеническом движении за этническую чистку».Евгеника ─ псевдонаука, которая ставила перед собой цель «улучшение» человечества. В её крайней, расистской форме, это означало уничтожение всех «непригодных» людей, сохранение только тех, кто соответствовал нордическому стереотипу. Идеи этой философии были закреплены в национальной политике законами о принудительной стерилизации, о сегрегации и ограничении браков. В 1909 году Калифорния стала третьим штатом из 27, в которых действовали такие законы. В итоге практикующими евгениками насильно стерилизовано около 60 тысяч американцев, тысячам было отказано в заключении брака со своими избранниками, тысячи были загнаны в «колонии» и огромное число людей было подвержено преследованию способами, которые сейчас выясняются. Перед Второй Мировой войной почти половина принудительных стерилизаций были проведены в Калифорнии. И даже после войны в этом штате проводили треть таких операций.Калифорнию считали центром движения евгеники в Америке. В начале 20 века в состав калифорнийских евгеников входили сильные, но малоизвестные учёные-расоведы. Среди них были: армейский врач-венеролог доктор Пол Попеноу, цитрусовый магнат Пол Госни, банкир из Сакраменто Чарльз Гëте, а также члены Совета благотворительных организаций и исправительных учреждений штата Калифорния и Совет регентов Калифорнийского университета.Евгеника так и была бы по большому счёту необычной темой разговоров в гостиных, если бы её так щедро не финансировали крупные организации-филантропы, в особенности, Институт Карнеги, Фонд Рокфеллера и компания «Harriman railroad fortune». Все они сотрудничали с выдающимися американскими учёными из таких престижных университетов, как Стэнфордский, Йельский, Гарвардский и Принстонский. Эти учёные поддерживали теорию расы и саму евгенику, а затем фабриковали и извращали данные в пользу евгенических расистских целей.В 1904 году президент Стэнфордского университета Дэвид Старр Джордан в своём послании «Кровь нации» ввёл понятие «раса и кровь». Университетский учёный заявил, что качества человека и его положение (например, талант и бедность) передаются по крови.Компания «Harriman railroad fortune» платила местным благотворительным учреждениям (например, «New York Bureau of Industries and Immigration» за содействие в поиске евреев, итальянцев и других иммигрантов в Нью-Йорке и других густонаселённых городах, их депортации, ограничении в передвижении или насильственной стерилизации.Почти всё духовное руководство и материалы политической агитации для евгенического движения в Америке поступали из Калифорнийских квазиавтономных евгенических обществ, таких как «Pasadena's Human Betterment Foundation» и Калифорнийское отделение американского общества евгеников, которые координировали большую часть своей деятельности с «Eugenics Research Society in Long Island». Эти организации (которые функционировали как часть тесно связанной сети) публиковали расистские евгенические листовки и псевдонаучные журналы «Новости евгеники» (Eugenical News), «Евгеника» (Eugenics) и пропагандировали нацизм.Наиболее распространённым орудием геноцида в Соединённых Штатах была «камера смерти» (более известная как газовая камера местного управления). В 1918 году Попеноу, армейский врач-венеролог времён Первой мировой войны, выступил соавтором пользующегося широким спросом учебника «Прикладная евгеника» ("Applied Eugenics"), в котором доказывал, что «с исторической точки зрения, первый метод, который говорит сам за себя, есть смертная казнь... Её значение в поддержании чистоты расы не следует недооценивать». В этом учебнике также есть глава, посвящённая «избирательности смерти», которая «убивает индивидуума неблагоприятными факторами окружающей среды (например, чрезмерный холод, бактерии или физический недуг)».Селекционеры от евгеники были уверены, что американское общество ещё не готово к применению организованного умерщвления. Но многие психиатрические клиники и доктора самостоятельно практиковали импровизированную летальность и пассивную эвтаназию. В одной из клиник Линкольна, штат Иллинойс, поступающих пациентов поили молоком от коров, больных туберкулёзом, полагая, что генетически чистый индивидуум будет неуязвимым. От 30 % до 40 % смертей в год приходилось на Линкольн. Одни доктора практиковали «пассивный евгеноцид» над каждым из новорождённых. Среди других врачей в психиатрических клиниках была распространена халатность, часто приводящая к смертям.Даже Верховный суд США поддерживал подходы евгеники. В 1927 году в своём печально известном решении судья Верховного суда Оливер Уэнделл Холмс написал: «Будет лучше для всего мира, если мы не будем ждать, пока поколение дегенератов утопит нас в преступности, и не позволим им наслаждаться своим слабоумием, когда общество может предотвратить размножение тех, кто для этого не пригоден. Трёх поколений дегенератов вполне достаточно». Это решение открыло дорогу принудительной стерилизации и преследованиям тысячей, кого считали неполноценными. Впоследствии во время Нюренбергского процесса нацисты цитировали слова Холмса в качестве своего оправдания.Только после того, как евгеника укрепилась в США, была проведена кампания по её насаждению в Германии. В немалой степени этому способствовали калифорнийские евгеники, которые публиковали буклеты, идеализирующие стерилизацию, и распространяли их среди немецких чиновников и учёных.Гитлер изучил законы евгеники. Он попытался узаконить свой антисемитизм, подводя его под медикализацию и придавая ему ещё более привлекательный псевдонаучный вид евгеники. Гитлер смог привлечь большое количество последователей среди рациональных немцев, заявив, что занимается научными исследованиями. Расовая ненависть Гитлера родилась у него в голове, но идейные основы евгеники, которые он принял в 1924 году, были сформулированы в Америке.В 20-е годы учёные-евгеники Института Карнеги развивали глубокие личные и профессиональные отношения с немецко-фашистскими евгениками. В книге «Майн кампф» ("Mein Kampf"), опубликованной в 1924 году, Гитлер ссылался на идеологию американской евгеники, демонстрируя глубокие познания в ней. «Сегодня есть одно государство», - писал Гитлер, - «в котором заметно хоть какое-то продвижение в направлении к лучшей концепции (об иммиграции). Конечно, это не наша образцовая Германская республика, а Соединённые Штаты».На заре существования Рейха американские евгеники приветствовали достижения Гитлера и его планы как логическое завершение своих многолетних исследований. Калифорнийские евгеникипереиздавали материалы с нацистской пропагандой для распространения её в Америке. Они также устраивали нацистские научные выставки, например, выставка в Художественном музее округа Лос-Анджелес в августе 1934 года, ежегодное собрание Американской ассоциации работников здравоохранения.В 1934 году, когда количество стерилизаций в Германии превысило 5 тысяч в месяц, лидер калифорнийских евгеников Ч.М. Гëте по возвращению из Германии с восхищением рассказывал одному из своих коллег: «Тебе будет небезынтересно узнать, что твой труд сыграл огромную роль в формировании взглядов группы интеллектуалов, стоящих за Гитлером в его эпохальном проекте. Повсюду я чувствовал, что их мнения очень подвержены американскому влиянию... Я хочу, друг мой, чтобы всю свою жизнь ты помнил, что дал толчок развитию великого правительства, управляющего 60 миллионами человек».Кроме предоставления плана действий, Америка финансировала научные институты, занимающиеся вопросами евгеники в Германии.С 1940 года началась регулярная травля газом тысяч немцев, насильно забираемых из домов престарелых, психиатрических учреждений и других опекунских мест. Было планомерно убито от 50 000 до 100 000 человек.Леон Уитни, исполнительный секретарь американского евгенического общества, заявил о нацизме: «Пока мы осторожничаем, немцы называют вещи своими именами».Особой благосклонностью Фонда Рокфеллера пользовался Берлинский институт антропологии, человеческой наследственности и евгеники имени кайзера Вильгельма. Десятилетиями американские евгеники нуждались в близнецах, чтобы проводить исследование в области наследственности.Теперь институт был готов предпринять такое исследование на беспрецедентном уровне. 13 мая 1932 года Фонд Рокфеллера в Нью-Йорке отправил радиограмму в свой офис в Париже: «ИЮНЬСКОЕ ЗАСЕДАНИЕ ИСПОЛНИТЕЛЬНОГО КОМИТЕТА ДЕВЯТЬ ТЫСЯЧ ДОЛЛАРОВ НА ТРЕХЛЕТНИЙ ПЕРИОД ДЛЯ ИНСТИТУТА АНТРОПОЛОГИИ ИМЕНИ КАЙЗЕРА ВИЛЬГЕЛЬМА ДЛЯ ИССЛЕДОВАНИЙ БЛИЗНЕЦОВ И ВЛИЯНИЯ ТОКСИЧЕСКИХ СУБСТАНЦИЙ НА ЗАРОДЫШЕВУЮ ПЛАЗМУ БУДУЩИХ ПОКОЛЕНИЙ».Период благотворительных пожертвований Рокфеллера пал на время руководства институтом Отмаром Фрайхерром фон Фершуэром (Otmar Freiherr von Verschuer), знаменитой личности в евгенических кругах. Рокфеллер продолжал финансировать этот институт в начале руководящей деятельности Фершуера, как по основному направлению, так и по каналам других исследований. В 1935 году Фершуэр оставил институт, чтобы создать конкурирующий евгенический институт во Франкфурте. Об этом событии было во всеуслышание заявлено в американской евгенической прессе. Поддерживаемые правительственными декретами в третьем рейхе стали интенсивно проводиться опыты над близнецами. Фершуэр писал в возглавляемом им евгеническом медицинском журнале «Дер Эрбарцт» (Der Erbarzt), что война Германии «раз и навсегда решит еврейскую проблему».Как писал Майкл Крайтон (Michel Crichton) в 2004 году: «Её сторонниками были также Теодор Рузвельт, Вудро Уилсон и Уинстон Черчилль. Её одобрили Верховные судьи Оливер Уэнделл Холмс и Луис Брэндис, которые вынесли решение в её пользу. Её поддерживали: Александр Грэм Белл, изобретатель телефона; активистка Маргарет Сэнджер; ботаник Лютер Бербэнк; Лиланд Стэнфорд, основатель Стэнфордского университета; писатель-романист Герберт Уэллс; драматург Джордж Бернард Шоу и сотни других. Оказывали поддержку нобелевские лауреаты. Исследования поддержали фонды Рокфеллера и Карнеги. Для проведения этих исследований был создан научный комплекс в Колд Спринг Харбор, важные исследования также проводились в Гарвардском, Йельском, Принстонском, Стэнфордском и имени Джонса Хопкинса университетах. Законы о борьбе с кризисом были приняты в штатах от Нью-Йорка до Калифорнии.Эти усилия поддержали Национальная академия наук, Американская медицинская ассоциация и Национальный научно-исследовательский совет.Говорили, что если бы Иисус был жив, тоже поддержал бы эту программу.В конечном счёте, исследования, законодательная деятельность и формирование общественного мнения относительно этой теории продолжались почти полвека. Тех, кто противостоял этой теории, высмеивали и называли реакционерами, слепцами или просто объявляли невежами. Но что удивительно с точки зрения нашего времени, так это то, что было очень мало тех, кто противостоял.Был план - выявить умственно-неполноценных людей и остановить их размножение путём изоляции в специальных учреждениях или стерилизации. Сошлись на том, что умственно-неполноценны в основном евреи; и ещё много иностранцев и темнокожих американцев.Такие взгляды нашли широкую поддержку. Г.Уэллс выступал против «плохо обученных толп неполноценных граждан». Теодор Рузвельт утверждал, что «общество не имеет права позволить дегенератам воспроизводить себе подобных». Лютер Бербэнк требовал «запретить уголовникам и слабовольным рожать». Джордж Бернард Шоу заявлял, что только евгеника спасёт человечество.Американские евгеники завидовали немцам, так как с 1926 года те перехватили лидерство. Немцы были поразительно успешны. В обычные дома они доставляли «умственно неполноценных» и поодиночке допрашивали их, а затем отправляли в заднюю комнату, которая, по существу, служила газовой камерой. Там людей травили угарным газом, а их тела переправляли в крематорий, размещённый на частной территории.Со временем эта программа разрослась в широкую сеть концентрационных лагерей, располагавшихся возле железнодорожных путей, которые давали возможность использовать эффективный транспорт. В этих лагерях было убито десять миллионов «ненужных людей».После второй мировой войны оказалось, что евгеников не существует, и никогда не было. Биографы знаменитостей и сильных мира сего не упоминали о заинтересованности своих героев в этой философии, а иногда совсем о ней не вспоминали. Евгеника перестала быть учебным предметом в колледжах, хотя некоторые утверждают, что её идеи продолжают существовать в изменённом виде.К слову надо заметить, что самый деятельный адепт евгенической науки доктор Менгеле, который печально известен своими ужасными опытами над живыми людьми, в том числе детьми, и в том числе даже новорожденными младенцами, был по окончании войны заботливо переправлен в США, где получил все необходимые документы чтобы перебраться в Латинскую Америку. Где его не посмела тронуть даже Моссад. И в 1979 году он тихо и мирно скончался от инсульта во время купания.http://www.moral.ru/Evgenik2.htmhttp://demoscope.ru/weekly/2005/0195/gazeta039.phphttp://emigration.russie.ru/news/2/2163_1.htmlhttp://dokumentika.org/evgenika/evgenika-2