Q: What are your political goals?
A: I will be in Jersey.
Newark can re-awaken the moral imperatives of the US. We must see the
Q. from Shirley Tilghman: Can we fix the K through 12 inequities,
like the ones in Summit, NJ
versus those in downtown Newark?
A: We have the capacity. Do we have the will? Universities--Princeton, Rutgers UNJ--are part of our competitive
Q: Health performance--what are your ideas?
A: 1. We began a Health Prevention program with Hines
2 We convinced drug companies reduce prices via grants.
3 We have helped to provide healthcare for immigrants
Maria Bartiromo interviews Larry Summers
Q: What are your thoughts on unemployment?
A: Job loss is slower than it was.
Q: When will there be job gains?
A: After GDP increases, which will be the last quarter of this
Q: Will the economy just bump along the bottom?
A: Things are better than they were. But recovery is still
slow. We have much more to do
Q: Are we at risk of a double dip recession?
A: There is a downward tend in job loss. We see no reason
for a resumption of the free fall economy. The worst of the cycle is past. We
should see a basic pattern of recovery, although the path won't be smooth.
Q: How much impact has the stimulus package had?
A: A lot. Cops, firemen, teachers would be on the street
without the stimulus package. Consumers would be very distressed. The credit
crunch would not have ended. A falling economy was damaging the financial
system. The damaged financial system was hurting the economy. This is not
happening now, thanks to the stimulus and banking programs. Less than half of
the stimulus has been felt. We have saved a million more jobs. Another half of
the stimulation is yet to come. There are opportunities for new
growth-healthcare technology for example. Hospitals have less information
technology that the average supermarket. Energy investments for weatherization
may payback quickly and profitability.
Q: What is the problem with hospital IT?
A: When there are things people can do that make the world a
better place with direct payoff, the market will do it. But, what is the gain
to a doctor who invests in an electronic medical record if other doctors can't
read it? Why should he invest now if he believes that the national standards
will change soon?
Q: Do we need a second stimulus package?
A: We need to continue to support people in need, i.e. the
COBRA program. We need continuing public investments. We should increase research funding. We need
to enhance small householders' abilities to keep their houses, and to encourage
small businesses and get rid of toxic assets. Small businesses are worried
about health care costs. Meaningful health care reform will help small and
medium sized businesses.
Q: Can you help small business get credit?
Q: Will you raise taxes by letting the Bush tax cuts expire?
A: We can't let the unfunded tax cuts for the wealthy
expire. The President will help the low income people save taxes. If we collect
unpaid taxes, close tax loops holes, and change unfair tax preferences, we can raise
significant amounts of money.
Q: Where are you on the deficit?
A: We are worried about the deficit. We must address it.
First we need the economy to grow.
Q: Where are you on "too big to fail"?
A: It is a huge issue. Institutions that were not thought of
as part of the banking system turned out to be important to the financial
system. We need higher capital requirements (so the capital will cover problems
not the public), harmonization of regulation (to eliminate charter flipping and
switch of jurisdictions), and resolution authority (pre-planned funerals for
Q: How can we spur small business lending?
A: Can banks be more confident in their customers than are
in themselves? No. So, we provide more capital to banks. Karen Mills of SBA is
working on this.
Q: What will be the new strengths of the U.S. economy?
A: What will history say.
We want to avoid this period becoming a remarkable period.
I want them to learn that: 1. Healthcare 2. Energy 3. Education
all got stronger in this period. Also I want this to be remembered as a period
when the global financial
structures became stronger, more
transparent and more protected.
Q: Where are you on Protectionism?
A: We want to support open trade agreements. If people break
the agreements, surge protections for example, then we need to enforce them. We
are not protectionist.
This will be remembered as time when international trade flourished
thanks to government action and technology.
Interviewed by Howard Fineman
Drew Gilpin Faust:
Q: How will Universities change their mission in response to
the financial crises?
Simmons: We won't. Universities take the long view. Our
mission has been the same for more than 200 years. We compete with other universities
now. I ask how we can share resources,
faculty, and facilities to reduce costs and to improve global education. We
also need to focus on the continuum of education of K-12 through Universities
Faust: We should look at the long view. Did we not challenge
our students enough? Why didn't we see the problems in the economy?
Tilghman: Did universities lose their way? We were hit by
one in a 70 year event. Our endowment is the same as it was in 2006. We are in
this for the long haul. We shouldn't overreact to change.
Sexton: There is an admonition. Everyone here said when
pressed that the key to the future is education. We need an education strategy.
In 2050 ideas capitals will be Beijing, New York, Abu
Dhabi and where else? K-20 education is the key (Why
not K-25?) Of the 50 leading Universities, 10 are in the U.S. Will this continue? We have
lost the idea as education as a public good.
Tilghman: This administration has made a commitment to
innovation: Innovation is universities!
Faust: We wish to help students prepare for careers in
Simmons: Those who come after us will have to solve the
problem. Problems of the future will be more complex than they are today. Now
students must be familiar with many areas of knowledge. We can't move from a
textbook to problem solving.
Sexton: Obama is the product of a meritocracy in education
and politics. We should shame and honor people. We need nuanced conversation.
We need to honor teachers.
Q: What will be the effect of digital social media on universities?
Tilghman: Information technology can enhance education. But
I have never seen anything as powerful as a scholar instructing 12 in a
seminar. I worry about dumbing down complexity.
Faust: We ask our students to shut laptops down or not in
classrooms. Personal interactions are
important. The digital revolution is an opportunity.
Simmons: These are only tools. Tools don't answer life's
questions. I would be pained if students think tools are sufficient for
understanding humans. Human psychology is important.
Sexton: I was put on
earth to be a teacher. I have rated myself as a six out of ten on my own score in
good teaching since I became President. Our job is to move each person as far
up the education ladder as possible.
Jim Fallows interviews the CEO of Google Eric Schmidt.
Q: There have been two Atlantic covers featuring Google: Is
Google Making Us Stoopid? Is Google Making Us Smart?
A: My concern is the speed of technology. Ten years from now,
computers will be at least 10 times faster than they are today. Computers are
good a remembering things Computers are good at calculating probabilities. Computers will be good fact checkers.
And we can run simulations. Computers can give us real time
information. Can people live in their own fragmented fact universe? Social
networking. Most information will come from your friends and will be generated
by your friends.
Q: Will people together act well?
A: I think most will. However, if men were angels we would
not need government.
The public sector is troubled.
Q: Can technological solutions help government?
A: How will technology change government? It will be hard to
tell a real voter from a fake voter over the Internet. The new technology will
demand transparency and lack of anonymity. Issues will appear like we think you
are person but you might be a computer; prove you are a person.
Q: What is the future of the free press?
A: Print, ads, investigative reporting have all been big
successes. But they won't be strong in the future. New readership will help us
read more. Targeted products are good for targeted advertising.
Q: How does Google work in China--the only place where Google
is not dominant?
A: The Chinese are selective in their censorship.
Comment: Groups make better decisions than individuals.
Technology can help groups make decisions. There is evidence that humans are
less happy with more information because we are unhappy with the ambiguity that
comes with more information. Maybe one
of our goals is to help reduce the ambiguity of too much information by providing
fewer answers to queries. In the future, all primary source material should be
available on Google. We are working hard to bring you all un-copyrighted
information and to reach agreements with as many copyright holders as we can to
provide access to copyright protected material as well.