They’re discussing the Syria situation now. Obama is throwing cold water on the notion that the US will escalate in any significant way. He said everyone should be reluctant to rush into another Middle Eastern war since we know how that turns out.
Now discussing China. Stand by for Snowden!
Obama on the security state: “Let’s examine current surveillance practices and make sure we’re making the right trade offs.” Invoked concepts in recent speech on rethinking perpetual war footing.
Obama: I have no problem with what NSA is doing. On FISA court’s 100% approval rate: There are a small number of requests, and investigators don’t request warrants without reasonable suspicion. Congress has oversight.
Says he has convened privacy panel, including “fierce civil libertarians,” and wants to have a national conversation about it. When asked if Snowden’s leak caused damage, Obama deflected on the specifics but said the government needs some leeway to conduct counter-terrorism, hacking, etc., investigations.
Obama on the charge that he is Bush Lite: We ended “enhanced interrogation” and put checks and balances in place. But there are folks on the left who are not going to be satisfied, and that’s a healthy thing. This debate wouldn’t be taking place five years ago, and “I welcome it…it’s important to have critics out there checking government power.”
Obama on our biggest challenge now: Economy doesn’t work for everyone. Could lead to second rate status if we don’t address it.
Climate gets a shout out! But back to growing inequality. Trend line is continuing, partly due to globalization and technology, but must be addressed. Will focus on it for remainder of presidency and focus on that in addition to making sure no one blows us up (last part is pretty exact quote).
And that’s it…Rose wishes Obama a Happy Father’s Day in pre-recorded interview. They shake, and it’s over. Conclusion: History’s greatest monster!
*An exaggeration: Mild tipsiness at the worst.