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The McLaughlin Group

Subject: Asia, Net Neutrality

Participants:
John McLaughlin, Host;
Pat Buchanan, Author and Columnist;
Eleanor Clift, The Daily Beast;
Tom Rogan, National Review/Daily Telegraph;
Mort Zuckerman, U.S. News & World Report

Time: 11:30 am EST
Date: Sunday, November 16th, 2014

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JOHN MCLAUGHLIN: Issue One: Asia Pivot.

A week after his shellacking in the U.S. midterm elections, President Obama has been traveling in Asia. His first stop was the 21-member Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, APEC, summit forum in Beijing, China.

Here Mr. Obama was able to utilize and reinforce his skill and credentials. The U.S. president used straightforward if not admonitory language.

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: (From videotape.) We look to China to create a more level playing field on which foreign companies are treated fairly so that they can compete fairly with Chinese companies. We look to China to become an innovative economy that values the protection of intellectual property rights and rejects cybertheft of trade secrets for commercial gain.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: President Obama also announced that visas for Chinese citizens to travel to the United States will be extended on a reciprocal basis from one to 10 years. According to the White House, this reform means that seven years from now, China trade will then have contributed nearly $85 billion a year to the American domestic economy and have supported up to 440,000 U.S. jobs.

Question: What did President Obama achieve or not achieve at the APEC summit in China? Pat Buchanan.

PAT BUCHANAN: Little or nothing. This was a huge triumph for the Chinese, John. You've got $85 billion in American exports to China. They run a $300 billion surplus at our expense every year. They've got $4 trillion in foreign currency reserves. They're building a greater Asian - (inaudible), I mean, like Napoleon tried to do in Europe. They're trying to bring all those countries under their control. They use their investment in aid to get tangible and hard gains for them.

The Chinese are really doing to the United States in this country and at the end of the last century what the United States did to Great Britain at the end of the 19th century, basically eclipsing them and moving them out as the first military and economic power on earth.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Eleanor.

ELEANOR CLIFT: Pat doesn't like trade. He doesn't like globalization. So you've got to put what he said in perspective.

I think that the Chinese are lowering the tariffs significantly on technology, which will be great for U.S. manufacturers. But the important thing that emerged from this meeting was the deal on climate. And it is significant that the two biggest emitters of greenhouse gases are basically acknowledging the reality that this is a serious issue. It's an existential issue, if you will, for the planet. They both made promises. And it's true that both of them are set on these trajectories towards the commitments that they made already, but neither leader will be able to walk back on these commitments.

President Obama has already made a number of executive actions. There will be more on coal. And the next president, even if it's a Republican, is not going to come in and say let's go back to polluting more. And the Chinese are serious about this, because nobody wants to breathe the air that comes out of the tailpipe of a car, and that's what the air in Beijing is like. And if you watched the Beijing marathon recently, people were running with masks. They were actually ventilators. It's the only way you could breathe.

So this is a significant step. Most presidents come back from China in recent years empty-handed. And President Obama was invited to the compound, which is the president's residence. The last president to be invited there was Richard Nixon, who made the first real opening with China.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Tom Rogan.

MR. BUCHANAN: I was there.

TOM ROGAN: I think a couple of things stand out. I think it's a positive step that the president has been able to negotiate this visa extension. You know, China - there are a lot of wealthy individuals in China who can potentially invest in the United States. Hopefully we'll see more of that.

But the concern is the broader rule of law in China. And the president rightly mentioned the issue with cybercrime on the part of the Chinese government. My concern, though, is that with this climate deal, it really doesn't have any impetus for the Chinese actually to do anything in the short term. It's quite vague, deliberately so, in the language. And because there are no ramifications for China's continued stealing, essentially, of American proprietary intellectual rights, that the relationship is still one-sided towards the Chinese and doesn't actually do enough to benefit American interests.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Mort.

MORT ZUCKERMAN: Well, I think - by and large, I think that's true. But I think this is going to be a relationship that's going to evolve over time. I actually thought this was a very constructive step forward. It's not going to solve all of the problems. It's just too complicated, particularly with a country like China, which has a very different political system.

Nevertheless, I think they were moved and moving in the right direction. And I think this is another step on a long-term process that I think is always welcome, rather than it turning into something that is just hostile and -

MR. BUCHANAN: The problem is the Chinese are -

MS. CLIFT: The White House really worked - the White House really worked this with private correspondence between the two presidents, the visit in Sunnylands. President Obama - for all the criticism he's taken for not being engaged and not forging personal relationships, he's done this with this Chinese leader, and it's paying off.

MR. BUCHANAN: John, this - China sees itself as the middle kingdom. They are deeply economically nationalist. The United States believes in this gauzy new world order, globalization; you're right, globalism, what's best for the globe. They believe in what's best for number one, just as the Americans once did and the British did before us and the Germans did under Bismarck.

What we are seeing is - we've seen the massive deindustrialization of the United States. Where do you think all those factories have gone?

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: OK, the other side of the coin.

China has plans of its own to challenge U.S. influence in Asia. President Xi persuaded APEC leaders to adopt his free-trade area of the Asia-Pacific agreement, and at the same time announcing major new spending, which will boost China's regional influence.

CHINESE PRESIDENT XI JINPING (through interpreter, from videotape.) China will commit 40 billion U.S. dollars to the establishment of a - (inaudible) - fund to provide investment and financing for countries along the - (inaudible) - to undertake relevant projects in infrastructure, resources development and industrial cooperation.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Question: What will be the upshot of President Xi's regional economic proposal? Tom.

MR. ROGAN: I think what's happening here is that the Chinese are trying to exert regional influence in a much bigger way; this investment, the more open tone in terms of APEC trying to be a bit more conciliatory, at least in terms of the style.

But the issue is that the Chinese have a real problem in the sense of rule of law. I mean, if you think about what's happening in the populist movements in the Philippines and Vietnam, concern about China's role in the East China Sea and encroaching into territory, the United States has an opportunity, if they're willing to, are willing to be bold, to actually buffer against China in that rule-of-law area, which often gets under-covered. But the question is, that needs credibility. And the question is, who has the greater resolve?

MR. BUCHANAN: This was a charm offensive, there's no doubt, as opposed to, you know, threatening the Vietnamese, threatening the Philippines, threatening the Indians, threatening the Japanese.

At the same time, John, where did they get $40 billion to hand out in foreign aid? They're using that to tie these countries together. They get it from the enormous exports to the United States of America, these mammoth trade deficits we've been running year in and year out. Nobody talks about them.

MS. CLIFT: No, it was talked about very much at the summit, which is why, if you get the lowering of tariffs on the kind of products we make that we can get over there.

You're arguing about battles that have already been lost. Christmas morning, when people open up the gifts under the tree, every one of them has been made in China. We've lost that fight.

MR. BUCHANAN: Well, that's where they get the $40 billion -

MS. CLIFT: So where is the next generation of jobs going to come from? It's going to come from opening markets in China, which is -

MR. BUCHANAN: And you think they're going to let us invade their market -

MS. CLIFT: - a huge market.

MR. BUCHANAN: - the way they've invaded ours. Are you kidding?

MS. CLIFT: They just lowered their tariffs on technology products. It's got to stop somewhere. The Chinese economy is slowing. Obama really had a bit of an upper hand in this meeting.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: OK, things that go bump in the night.

In August, the Pentagon warned that a Chinese fighter aircraft jet had flown dangerously close to a U.S. P-8 military plane off the coast of China.

Later this year, China is expanding its nuclear submarine fleet to include attack submarines armed with JL-2 nuclear missiles. With a range of nearly 5,000 miles, these nuclear warheads are capable of striking the United States from East Asia. Because of this rising potential for a military miscalculation at sea or in the air, the U.S. and China signed defense protocols this week to minimize the chances for a dangerous encounter through better coordination about maneuvers, advanced notice, and military-to-military communication.

Question: Is this perhaps the most important achievement of the summit? Mort Zuckerman.

MR. ZUCKERMAN: Well, it certainly is an important achievement. Look, I have to say I disagree with Pat's analysis.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Well, I think all of us do, don't we?

MR. ZUCKERMAN: Well, at this point; not always. But, you know, I think China is an emerging country and an emerging power. I don't think they're intending to be just a military power, although they're going to - because of their ideology, they're going to protect themselves. But they are great businesspeople, great traders; always have been. This is a part of their culture. And we're going to have to make - we're going to have to make a place for them, OK.

MR. BUCHANAN: But this -

MR. ZUCKERMAN: And we should make a place for them.

MR. BUCHANAN: This was a good agreement, I think. But the thing is, John, they have not reneged on their claim that the South China Sea is their territorial waters and the East China Sea is their territorial waters. And they're moving their navy into the Indian Ocean. I'd say they've got a ways to go, but if you take a look at the trajectory of the United States in the last 20 years and the trajectory of China, there is no doubt which way the world has gone.

MS. CLIFT: Well, they have not reneged on their claim on Taiwan either, but they put things kind on the back burner. And I think that the temperature has been greatly lowered about the fight with Japan and -

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Tom, does China's nuclear submarine fleet make such an agreement an urgent need?

MR. ROGAN: I think it does. I also think that the issue here broadly, whether it's economic or security, is that the Chinese tend to see, because of their political culture, these oral agreements in a very different way than we do. It's more - I think our leadership - the president, whoever's party it comes from; he or she comes from - sees it as a fundamental thing you have to agree with, whereas the Chinese see it as something that is a bit more flexible in their point of view.

And the nuclear submarine issue is a primary concern because of the threat they pose to U.S. aircraft carriers - I mean, one hit, you've got potentially 5,000 dead Americans - but also because of the way they are encroaching in the East China Sea. And that does require, on our part, a military buffering. But it also requires a posture that says to the Chinese you cannot do what you are doing in terms of the threats to our personnel, because there will be repercussions.

MS. CLIFT: Yeah, but these agreements -

MR. BUCHANAN: What are the repercussions? What are the repercussions?

MR. ROGAN: Well, I think if the Chinese are threatening a plane, then we lock on to it -

MS. CLIFT: This is -

MR. ROGAN: - and we (eventually ?) take them out.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Eleanor.

MS. CLIFT: This is a new Chinese president, President Xi, and new leaders around him. And I think the way they conducted the summit and what they're doing signals that they're going to do business differently. And you may say that they're going to walk away from this or that.

MR. BUCHANAN: I think -

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Hold on, Pat.

MS. CLIFT: Actually, if they make a commitment, they can carry it through. They don't have to steer around a Mitch McConnell. (Laughs.)

MR. BUCHANAN: (Inaudible.)

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Hold on, Pat. Is there a growing sense among U.S. policymakers that China is preparing for war with America?

MR. BUCHANAN: I don't - look, China has studied closely what happened between Germany and Britain, when Germany was the rising power before World War I, and Britain, who handled it badly and destroyed each other. They know that. I think they're going to move with toughness and caution. But I think Xi Jinping is one of the most impressive leaders in the world today.

MS. CLIFT: That's right. They're not looking for war.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Here's my notation on that. According to Michael Pillsbury, writing in the current issue of Foreign Policy, many Pentagon planners believe China is preparing for war. Even Henry Kissinger, ever the optimist about China, warns in his latest tome that the U.S. and China could be headed for a, quote, "World War I-scale," unquote, fight, with millions of casualties.

MR. BUCHANAN: I talked to -

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: What about that?

MR. BUCHANAN: I talked to Henry about China just day before yesterday. And Henry was talking - just some of the things I'm saying now - about China as the middle kingdom. You've got to understand, they see things entirely different than we do. I think there's a real danger of a clash. But I don't believe the Chinese want a war with the United States. In the United States, we certainly don't. And it's in neither of our interests.

MR. ZUCKERMAN: That's right.

MR. BUCHANAN: But there's no doubt they are growing and building and rising.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Yeah. And what about all the submarines they have?

MR. ROGAN: We have to deter them.

MR. BUCHANAN: I mean, that -

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: What?

MR. ROGAN: We have to deter them. I mean, the Chinese will get away with - if they think they can get away with being tough, they will. That's in their interest. The political culture is communist authoritarianism.

MS. CLIFT: Yeah, I think -

MR. ROGAN: But there is an opportunity -

MS. CLIFT: We don't need to be so paranoid. If you're going to be paranoid about war with China, look at cyberattacks. I mean, I think that's the place where people are vulnerable.

MR. ROGAN: We need to be guarded.

MS. CLIFT: I wouldn't look for their, you know, submarines coming up on our shores.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: OK, guests behaving badly?

On arriving at the APEC summit in China, President Obama strolled into the summit chewing gum. The president chews nicotine gum so he's not Jonesing for a cigarette. But how did the Chinese view his gum chewing? As gauche.

Also at the APEC summit, Russian President Vladimir Putin draped a shawl over the shoulders of the first lady of China, who, by the way, quickly slipped it off. How did the Chinese view this shawl-draping incident - not as chivalrous but as flirtatious?

Question: Did President Obama, the president - does President Obama and President Putin need to remember the old adage, when in Rome, do as the Romans do? Eleanor Clift. You get the point?

MS. CLIFT: Yeah. They weren't in Rome. I think everybody's going to get over it; minor infractions. I'm not concerned.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: How about the chewing of the gum?

MR. ZUCKERMAN: Well, don't look at me as an expert on chewing gum.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: (Inaudible.)

MR. ZUCKERMAN: I think it is ridiculous, to be honest with you, you know.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: There's another angle to it.

MR. ZUCKERMAN: It is probably not the most polite thing to do. But so what? He's chewing up. You know, I've got to tell you -

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: What happened the previous week to his week in China?

MR. BUCHANAN: He lost an election.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: He was devastated by an election.

MR. ZUCKERMAN: Yes.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: So doubtless over the weekend - doubtless; I don't know that; I'm not saying it - he might have slipped in a cigarette or two to recover from this.

MR. ZUCKERMAN: It's possible.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: And now maybe he's got to go back to the nicotine gum seriously -

MR. ZUCKERMAN: That's even possible. It's possible.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: - to get over -

MR. ZUCKERMAN: I don't know.

(Cross talk.)

MR. ZUCKERMAN: So what? So what?

MS. CLIFT: He should have brought a doctor's note.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: That's right. So what?

MR. ZUCKERMAN: Yeah. So what? You know -

MR. BUCHANAN: Do you think Putin was gallant putting that shawl around that freezing woman's arms, John?

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: I think it was - from his perspective, I think, in his own (era ?), I think he thought he was being a little bit gallant.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: I think he did too.

MR. ROGAN: He's comfortable with the cold.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: What do you think it was?

MR. BUCHANAN: If the Chinese don't like it, don't like it. I mean, we've got our traditions too, and that was a nice thing to do.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Did you see what she looked like?

MR. BUCHANAN: Chewing gum I disagree with, John. You don't chew gum -

MS. CLIFT: OK, so we're critical of Obama but we're praising Putin.

MR. BUCHANAN: I went to parochial school. You didn't chew gum in class.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Did anybody construe that as an act of flirtation?

Issue Two: Barack to Burma.

On Wednesday, the president visited Burma, also known as Myanmar. With a population of 53 million, Burma borders Bangladesh, China, India and Thailand. Its capital is Naypyidaw. In 2012, after discussions with then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Burma's ruling military junta agreed to move towards democracy. Today the reform process has stalled. Political freedoms in Burma remain limited, and the country is wracked by sectarian hostility.

Question: Can President Obama salvage democracy in Burma? Mort.

MR. ZUCKERMAN: I don't think he can salvage it. I mean, the Burmese leadership is going to have to solve it if they want. But they live in an environment in which there's a lot of turmoil, and frankly a lot of violence. And so you have in cultures like that, which tend to be authoritarian cultures, an easy willingness to resort to what we would call military pressure on their people. I don't think that's going away.

MR. BUCHANAN: The sectarian violence, John - the Rohingya Muslims in Burma are really persecuted horribly and treated horribly. And I think it's a good thing that the president of the United States talks to them in private and says, you know, please cut this out. We can't do business with you if you do that.

But in the longer run, we've got to - the United States is going to have to start looking out for its own national interest when it goes to countries and not telling them whether they can have a republic, a democracy, a monarchy, or whatever they want.

MS. CLIFT: Yeah, but we provide -

MR. ZUCKERMAN: Or chewing gum.

MS. CLIFT: We provide and we do cultural exchanges and that sort of thing. And you can ratchet that up or ratchet it down. And so you can have some impact on what they're doing. And I think it's appropriate for the U.S. to project its values that way.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Can he? Can he?

MR. ROGAN: Yeah, I think he can. You know, the leadership of Burma have a lot more to gain from joining the community of nations in the area of democracy, in expanded trade. My uncle was just there. It's a beautiful country. There's a huge opportunity for tourism, for example.

MS. CLIFT: Right.

MR. ROGAN: The president needs to make that clear to them.

MS. CLIFT: And the opposition leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, is an icon to American women. And so she's forbidden to run for president because they wrote something into the constitution if you have some relationship with a foreign country. And her two sons -

MR. BUCHANAN: (Inaudible.)

MS. CLIFT: Excuse me. And her two sons have British passports. She has been criticized because she didn't speak up for the Rohingya either. Nobody even dares mention their name, it's so sensitive. There's actually a SayTheirName hashtag in this country to actually speak of the problem. And the president did mention them in the press conference, and presumably was tougher in private.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: How did the American public react to the president's trip, in your view, Eleanor?

MS. CLIFT: I think anybody who was paying attention is cheering, especially people who care about the environment and progressives, and also, again, Democrats who felt like the election didn't go well. They're looking at this president. He's not afraid to exercise his power on the world stage, and he's also exercising it here at home. He's really defining the next two years with immigration reform, climate change and net neutrality. Who knew that was going to be such a big issue? So the president is much more emboldened, I think, than certainly the Republicans thought he would be.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Here is an oddity, a polling oddity, I think. The day after his breakthrough deals with China were announced, Gallup tracked his approval rating dropping by 1 percent, while his disapproval rating went up by 1 percent. He now stands at 41 percent approval and 53 percent disapproval in the Gallup polling. Can you believe that?

MR. ROGAN: Well, I can believe it, but I think there is an issue, though, where the American people don't tend to, unfortunately, pay as much attention as perhaps we should to foreign policy. I mean, we'll be interested to see what happens when the president returns with that polling data.

But really the tangibles - my concern again is that we don't - you know, with climate change or Burma, China on the security side, the proof will be in the pudding, to use a British term, in the details, whether there is a tangible change, because rhetoric is meaningless unless it means something.

Is there optimism? Yes. Should there be? Yes.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Do you think there's more rhetoric in this trip than reality?

MR. ROGAN: At the moment. Reality has to be defined in physical acts.

MR. BUCHANAN: John, we seem to be -

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: I think they - I think they think that it was more reality than it was rhetoric.

MR. ROGAN: Well, they would think that.

MR. BUCHANAN: John -

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: They would?

MR. BUCHANAN: Look at our concerns - human rights, these other things. They're all good things. They're very soft to the Chinese. The Chinese are interested in real power - economic, military, strategic. And that's the way they look at things. And us talking about, you know, carbon dioxide with these guys -

MS. CLIFT: That's a serious issue, Pat. It's nothing to be laughed at.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: I think -

MR. BUCHANAN: The Chinese are laughing at you.

MS. CLIFT: Until we figure out that the rich can breathe different air than the poor, this is something the whole planet's got to be concerned about.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: No, I think Pat has somehow lurched into the truth.

What do you have to say?

MR. ZUCKERMAN: Well, I think, you know, the reason why the American public isn't all that engaged in all of these trips, OK, is because they have other issues here to worry about, including one of the worst unemployment or underemployment records in a very, very long time, an economy that is very weak, a sense of a loss of real leadership at the national level. Why should they get so concerned over whether somebody's chewing gum or not? I mean, with all due respect - and I take your point, Pat - there are real issues here that is going to keep the American public focused. And that's the right way to do it.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Issue Three: Battle for the Net.

The Internet has become ubiquitous in the home, at school, on the job, even on the street, where people use it on their cell phones. Nearly 90 percent of American adults now use the Internet, up from - get this - 14 percent in 1995. It's hard today to imagine a world without the Internet. But is the Internet, as we know it, subject to change? That depends on the Federal Communications Commission.

The FCC, the agency which - get this - makes decisions independent of the president and Congress, has signaled that it would allow big telecom and cable companies which provide Internet access to millions, like Verizon and AT&T, to charge higher fees to Internet companies to ensure their content is delivered to consumers faster. Those companies hypothetically would pass on those higher fees to consumers.

In other words, the Internet of the future might be turned into a two-tiered system, where those who can afford it - big Internet companies and wealthier consumers - will be on an Internet, quote-unquote, "fast lane," while smaller companies and non-wealthy consumers will have to settle for an Internet slow lane.

Well, the idea of faster and slower lanes and higher fees isn't sitting well with many Internet companies, like Netflix, Reddit and Tumbr, that provide content to consumers. Neither is it sitting well with many consumers, who flooded the FCC website with nearly 4 million comments, many of those comments exhorting the FCC to uphold the principles of, quote-unquote, "net neutrality"; that is, all content and data on the Internet to be treated equally, equally accessible and at the same speed - a level playing field.

One notable advocate of this net neutrality: President Obama, who weighed in big this week.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: (From videotape.) That's why I'm urging the Federal Communications Commission to do everything they can to protect net neutrality for everyone. They should make it clear that whether you use a computer, phone or tablet, Internet providers have a legal obligation not to block or limit your access to a website.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Question: What does President Obama want the FCC, Federal Communications Commission, to do to ensure net neutrality? Eleanor.

MS. CLIFT: Well, net neutrality means you don't pick winners and losers. And the president wants the FCC to regulate the Internet like a utility; in other words, it's equal to all. And Ted Cruz, the Republican, has said that what Obama wants is "Obamacare" for the Internet, and he's going to wage a fight on behalf of the big telecoms.

I mean, this is basically a fight between Google and Comcast. And, you know, which side do you want to be on? And 80 percent of conservatives are for net neutrality. I mean, it's basically just a handful of companies, like Comcast, that are on the other side. And so -

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: I -

MS. CLIFT: And it's about regulation, which usually Republicans don't like, but in this case they think they want more of it.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: I asked a learned friend what he thought of this. This is the answer: This is an imperial presidency. From granting legal status to millions of illegal aliens by presidential decree to claiming the Internet as a public utility to unilaterally committing the U.S. to drastic carbon reductions without congressional consent, the Obama presidency knows no bounds.

What do you think of that?

MS. CLIFT: (Laughs.)

MR. ROGAN: Well, I have some sympathy for that point of view, and I think it's pretty far away from the presidential mantra or the campaign mantra in 2008, change you can believe in, that he wouldn't be more of an imperial president.

I think the real issue with net neutrality, though, is that a lot of people don't, quite frankly, understand it. And the broader concern that I have is that ultimately, you know, if you are looking towards the future with investment by the ISPs, the providers of the Internet, you need to give them a financial incentive to do that. If you don't, you're going to see a depreciation. And we may lose a lot of economic opportunity because we don't have the infrastructure because there's not the incentive to develop.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: What do you think, Mort?

MR. ZUCKERMAN: No, I agree with that completely. I think that is going to be a major issue, which is how do you keep a lot of the evolving technologies and uses of the Internet? They're going to come out of the major companies in one form or another, and a lot of that is now going to be taken away (from them ?).

MR. BUCHANAN: You know, Tom - I think Tom is dead right. There's no doubt Barack Obama - the president, I think, has got a very popular position.

MR. ZUCKERMAN: Right.

MR. BUCHANAN: But if you - I mean, look, you've got to have high speed for some of these things.

MR. ROGAN: Right.

MR. BUCHANAN: So I think you've got to find a balance between the two.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Forced prediction: President Obama will grant executive amnesty to 4 (million) to 6 million illegal aliens living in the United States. Yes or no?

MR. BUCHANAN: Yes. And it will split the Republican Party apart.

MS. CLIFT: Oh, I can't improve on that, Pat. But I would say it's not executive amnesty. It's work permits for people who are here.

MR. ROGAN: Yes, I think he will. But I don't think it will split the Republican Party.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Quickly.

MR. ROGAN: I think by the next election, 2016, they will be coalescing.

MR. ZUCKERMAN: Yes, he will. And I think it will not do the Democrats any - give them any help.

MR. MCLAUGHLIN: Rogan is right.

Bye-bye.

(END)