tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN February 17, 2016 8:00am-10:01am EST
for strategic and international studies looks at the state of the oil market and administration officials is joined by experts from the energy industry, live at 10:00 a.m. eastern on c-span. former u.s. immigration and natural service commissioner george meissner talks about the refugee problem at 9:30 eastern on c-span2. american history tv on c-span3 features programs that tell the american story. we continue our special series on the 1956 vietnam hearings, 50 years later but we hear special consultant to president johnson, general maxwell taylor's opening statement followed by committee member questions. >> our position equally clear and easily defined.
and his baltimore speech of april 7th, 1965, president johnson did so in the following terms. our objective of south vietnam and freedom from attacks. we want nothing for ourselves, only that the people of south vietnam be able to guide their own country in their own way. this has been our basic objective since 1954. it has been pursued by three success of administrations and remains our basic objective today. >> next saturday secretary of state gives his testimony defending johnson's vietnam policies. for the complete american history tv weekend schedule go to c-span.org. >> now discussion on the state of the working-class family, the well-being of children, family structure and marriage hosted by the american academy of political and social science, this is an hour and 25 minutes.
[inaudible conversations] >> i apologize for the late start, good morning friends, colleagues. my name is tom, executive director of the american academy of political and social science in philadelphia, greetings from beautiful philadelphia. organization is dedicated to dissemination of first-rate social science, influential in the public sphere so i must say having such a full room on a friday morning at the beginning of congressional resources is gratifying and a couple ways. it is a testament to the quality of this remarkable panel that we have been blessed to assemble with us this morning. secondly is gratifying because so many of you on the hill and in the hills arounds are interested to come out to hear
about what scholarship has to tell us about dynamics of change in american families, change in american socio-economic class structure, what it has to do with child well-being and whether or not policy can leverage change to our good. i would like to thank the any casey foundation for being such great partners to a stand making this session happen. for most our sincere gratitude goes to senator robert casey of pennsylvania and tim scott of south carolina for their interest in these issues and for being gracious enough to sponsor us here today. as you probably discerned by now we were in the middle of an audiovisual challenge so we had to show you a very gracious greeting from senator tim scott. i could play it from my laptop with the volume turned up, that would be pretty foolish at this point so i won't but i will ask
jerrod. >> i know you do not want to hear from me. as our replacement for senator casey, and as the father of four i don't think the issue of family and child well-being could be any more important and paramount in the center's mind set especially his role up here so i handle education policy for the senator and want to say thank you for coming and being here for this panel and making the trip to washington and hopefully this will be what you want, thank you. >> thanks. away this should have been running is for you to be seeing compelling and beautiful set of slides projected behind me but that apparently is not going to happen. it is pretty and our speakers are going to be working from that from this podium.
what i am encouraging you to do is e-mail me or my colleague, jessica. a lot of protected information out there. if you want any more information about what is going down here this morning, reach out and i apologize for that. i won't talk anymore. onto our moderator who probably need little introduction to wallaby because you know his work so well already selling will keep it brief by telling you mike is a syndicated columnist whose insights on politics, policy and society appear regularly in the washington post. he is a former adviser and a speechwriter for president george w. bush and for years has played a compelling and public role in helping us make sense of ourselves through his incisive, ernest and deeply informed, thank you very much for being here and agreeing to shepherd this panel. >> thank you for being here.
it is fitting, even necessary to start a discussion on family marriage and children with a reference to senator daniel patrick malloy and. in 1965 in the moynihan report, the rise in fraction of african-american children were growing up in household by unmarried mothers and worried that this disadvantage would compromise the ability of african-americans to take advantage of new rights and opportunities and he was rewarded with considerable controversy. from that time to is this, 70s until today, we have seen a vast change in social norms and practice in families not limited to any race. rates declined on marital births increased cohabitation increase children's greater variety of less stable family arrangements and we will hear about all of
that. all the change in numbers are actually a change in the way people express their love, and define their deepest commitments and care for their young. these of the most important things about our own lives so it is not surprising the they represent the most important issues in sociology and public policy. it would be hard to design a better panel to raise and discuss these issues. they have literally written the book on family analysis and policy, offered studies, submitted papers that the finest academic field. if anything were to happen to this panel without being observed and categorized by this group i am not sure people would procreate and form families anymore. that is a bit of an exaggeration but not much. we have given a particular disadvantage because all of them
had our point today, you know the old saying that power corrupt and power point corrupt absolutely so we will do without that. i will make a couple of short but necessary introductions. the benjamin griswold professor of public policy and john stockton university, extensively studied marriage and divorce, child well-being and the effect of welfare reform. sarah mcclendon and is a legend in these fields, william todd professor of sociology and public affairs at princeton, principal investigator on the fragile families and child well-being study and editor in chief of the journal future of children. bob putnam is the peter and isabel professor of public policy at harvard, winner of countless scholarly awards and honors and the crusading
malcontent behind our kids, american dream in crisis, rob haskins is co-director of working center and children and families, renowned expert on preschool foster care and poverty and influential white house and congressional adviser. we will hear their presentations now in that order and i will have a few questions to start a discussion and hopefully we will have some questions given time from all of you so be thinking in those terms. thank you for getting us started. >> thank you for giving me the privilege this morning. i want to talk about the american working class and family change. i am going to define the working class as people with a high school degree. and over the last few decades.
and talked about marriage, everyone is married. and a social class position, if you look at the percentage of americans in their late '40's and early 50's who are currently married, we find twice as many as are married among college grads as in the high school education. people in the middle of the high school brands are much less likely to be married and they were in the past. marriage is much less dominant especially among people without college degree. and what happened as marriages come to play in a smaller role
in the lives -- a large proportion of all births are to unmarried mothers. 40% of all births to unmarried mothers but this word and mary turns out to have a special meaning, people don't recognize unless they are government statisticians. and married to the census bureau or national center for health can mean two things. you are living by yourself or your mom but not with the father of your child or cohabiting with the father. the first meaning, single, the way we always thought about unmarried parents. the image is of a young unmarried woman living on her own or with mom, a teenager perhaps. that is the stereotypical image of the unmarried mother but there is another image and that is of a woman in her 20s with a high school degree living with
but not married to the guy who is the father of her children at the time of the birth. almost all of the increase in births to unmarried mothers over the last few decades has come because of cohabiting mothers. there is very the in the share of all birthss to an partnered single mothers, very little change. there is a huge change in the births to cohabiting mothers. and very surprising to us who follow this at first when we saw this rise. my first point to you is yes, there has been a sharp rise in unmarried mothers but when we think about it we should think about the large group of people in their 20s with moderate amount of dis implications for changes. where has all come from?
it turns out the biggest increase in births to cohabiting couples have come among moderately educated folks that i am calling the working class. people with a high school degree, maybe some college, not a four year degree. if you look at the births they have it was very unusual for any of those people to have birth while cohabiting but not married. it didn't happen very much. today it is 25% to 30%. of all births, moderate amount of education. people who are cohabiting. overall it is the case that upwards of 25% of all american births are to cohabiting couples. no one pays as much attention to that but it is an important factor and suggests if we want a typical picture in our head the
typical picture without a teenager but twentysomething. living together at the time of the vote birth, and the college-educated, there's very little change among them. people with a college degree, the college educated middle-class, they postponed marriage a lot but marion large numbers and crucially don't have kids until after they marry. 90% of all children to college grads occur within marriage and their marriages are more stable than they used to be. divorce rate has been going down for college-educated couples but not going down, not much for everybody else. if there is a social class divide in this country, a
boundary alliance between the classes, with respective families that line is between people with a four year college degree and everyone else. in terms of family lives, striking difference in the kind of almost neil traditional families college graduate living now that are still marriage based and people with less education, even with people with a couple years in college who got a degree so it huge difference now between what is happening to the college educated middle-class and what is happening to people below what we call the working class. why has this occurred? why have we had an increase in births of cohabiting mother is concentrated among high school graduates or people with a little bit of college? from my point, the development happened politically over the last couple years is that both conservatives and liberals or at least many people from both
political persuasions will acknowledge they are cultural and economic routes to these changes, cultural change to me is the most important, the greater acceptance of having a child outside of marriage. it just wasn't done 50 years ago except among the very poor. no it is relatively common and accepted. but there's a large economic component to this also. i have been studying a survey of 9,000 he young adults followed nationally for over a decade. i have been watching them as they grow through their 20s and with the data aren't them having passed through their 20s i have looked at the labor markets they are in and in an article libel published later this year our look at their labour markets to see how many of those markets have a large number of jobs that are accessible to somebody with a high school degree and pay above poverty wages.
let's call them good jobs just for the sake of argument. what i find is if you are living in an area with more good jobs and just have a high school degree or less you are less likely to be married before you have your first kid and in areas with less good jobs. why is that? because we have a strong warm that clinton must have good steady earnings in order to be good marriage prospects. it is good if the woman does too but men must. and when they don't have job prospect is the case that if they don't have job prospects they are not seen as good marriage material even to themselves. instead they start cohabiting relationships, brittle and short-term, with kids in these relationships causing a great deal of churning. i am sure you have seen -- what is this doing to the psyche of the average working-class person?
i am sure you have seen news reports the last couple months of rising death rates among middle-aged whites due to alcohol or drug abuse. here is what i think is going on. when people think about how they are doing they think about how they are doing well as what their parents did. police working class looks back the generation, they find they are earning less than their parents, less opportunities, less privileged than they had back then. over the 2,000s the percentage of white respondents was told the general survey they're doing better than their parents went down and down and down. we're as the percentage of african-americans and hispanics who say they are doing better than their parents has stayed the same or risen because they look back when times were not so great. we are seeing a huge economic transformation dues to the movement of jobs overseas, it
has affected family life of people in the middle, the moderately educated working class, moving away from marriage and shorter-term, less primitive, lots of kids, creating issues which sarah will talk about now. [applause] >> good morning. nice to be here. some beautiful slides for you. i am going to get to where i can see them. the title of my talk, what does family change mean for children? i am the director of the fragile family study which has been following a cohort of children born between 1998, and 2,000 and we started at the hospital,
mother had the baby, we sampled rooms, in our survey, mother said yes, father said yes and we would follow these mothers and fathers and their children and actually just finishing collecting data right now, the children to age 15. when i started the study, we did it because we have a lot of questions about the large increase in child bearing and wanted to know what is going on, what kind of relationships to these parents have? are they casual? are they committed? what does it mean to the fathers they are around? so the real purpose of the fragile family study was to answer the questions we are dealing with today. so i am going to make the following argument and give you sunday and to backups this argument. the first is the children born to unmarried parents and i
should mention when we did the study, we overssample from birth to unmarried parents so we would have a large sample of those births. compare the children born to unmarried parents, children born to unmarried parents experience much higher rates of union dissolution, higher prevalence of new partners coming into and out of a home and higher prevalence of families complexity which means siblings in the households that have different fathers. i am going to argue these experiences in themselves lead to more maternal stress, harder to run one of these, if you are trying to collect child support from one man and a range visitation with one when -- that is not easy but tried doing it with three different fathers and try scheduling visitation with three different fathers, you can just imagine it is the full-time job.
this leads to more maternal stress, this complex and stable family life. it leads to less commitment from the biological fathers because when they move out they are less likely to contribute to the child, they're not sure how the mother will spend the money they spend and if another man is in the house hold and if there's another man's child in the house hold that biological father is even more concerned about how his money is going to be spent so he contributes less. there's also less commitment to the children in front of these new partners because they are not the biological child of that man. that man may have a biological child and another household with a woman that he wants to go visit and he is contributing child support to that child so he just doesn't feel the same about the biological child born to the mother in our study. this stress and lack of commitment and instability, i argue leads to lower quality
parenting and lower quality parental investment and that is something bob is going to show and talk about a little bit and ultimately leads to lower child health and well-being so as a indeed pointed out it is the poor people who are getting into this situation clearly. this is a big part of the problem but this situation is making things worse for then i would argue. to start at birth when we look at these children, these were births in large cities we found life similar to what andy is talking about, the unmarried births. half of these parents were cohabiting at the time of the birth so they were not casual relationships or one night stands, fathers were a round at living with the mother. another 32% of these unmarried parents were in a dating relationship. some of them had plans to marry and fought they were going to marry, larger portions than they
wanted to marry. only 8% were friends and only 9% had little or no contact with each other. there is a lot of high hopes at the beginning of this situation when the baby is born. five years after the birth is a different story. i have data on first birthday, third birthday and fifth and i will talk about the fifth birthday. by the time the child is 5 years old, only 18% of those parents have broken up. that is a lot but still only 18%. 40 cohabiting parents is 50%. for the single mothers in the dating relationships it is 76%. these cohabiting relationships are more stable than dating relationships but not nearly as stable as marital relationships so then what happens? feet mother is young, looking for a new partner?
she goes out, looks, searches for a new partner and 70% of these mothers to break up have at least one new relationship. 30% of them have two or more relationships by the time the child is age 5. these relationships often result in having a child -- in the good old days when you got divorced you had been married seven years, might have had two children with that man, many people did partner but most of them did not have a child as a partner but they finished their fertility with the first partner but that doesn't happen anymore because when you have these partnerships ending so fast the mothers only had one child so the next partner she might go on to have another. 60% of children born to unmarried parents living with a
half sibling, 23% of those children have three or more have siblings with a different father. so this leads to a great deal of instability in the household and complexity. at five years survey we found 40% of the children had a new half sibling with both a mother and a father so what does this mean for the children? based on the data we have looked at it seems to be associated with lower scores in cognitive tests, more mental health problems for the children and more physical health problems, almost any outcome we look at the children are doing worse, a big part of that is because the children born to married parents are born to a highly educated parents with a good income, good jobs and a lot of economic
stability but even if you take account of that and compare children with similar parents' background, you did find their pretty negative consequences. so i recently have written a big review articles that looks at all these studies that we have amassed in the last 10 to 20 years, to look at the causal affects of this absence on children. democrats and republicans, liberals and conservatives disagree about whether this is all about in com or whether it is also something about the family structure so looking just at studies that try to deal with specific issues of causality, here is the bottom line. in terms of cognitive ability the effects are pretty small. they are not consistent. the affect on non cognitive skills, social evil shall development, are large. that is where these family
instead of these really hit the kids. and the results are consistent and the effects are especially large for boys. worried about boys, low-income, this is part of the picture. the mental health outcomes in adulthood are also large and consistent with physical health effects are small. the effect on education, finishing high school, and dared turn out to be large, that is a puzzle because you might think the cognitive effects were not so large so what is the problem with graduating from high school, we look closer rand it looks like these are not problems with cognitive abilities. these kids are more likely to skip school, less likely to persist in schools and is the social, emotional effects that are also affecting their educational attainment. the labor market affected adult with our small and mixed results and a large affect his son on marital childbearing in the future generation and that is the effect on girls that is most
changes in american life over the last 30 or 40 years that are relevant to these kids. the first is the one we've been talking about. that is the collapse of a working-class family across all racial lines. we've had a lot of discussion about and it's really important. a second big change we all know about because a debate going on about income inequality in america in the presidential election. a second bi that change is thers been a big increasing divide between rich and poor folks. that's going to be the rich end of the room just for the sake of these remarks, and people over their have done really well economically over the last 40 years. but the people from the middle down to the lower end of the income distribution haven't really had a race for the last 30 or 40 years. that affect apart from the family structure affect plays through on the kids as i will say in a moment. that big macro trend is pretty well known.
probably more important is america's not to become more polarized economically, we have become more segregated social logically along class lines. increasingly rich folks live only with other rich folks, and poor folks live increasingly in poor enclaves with poor folks are increasingly rich kids, using rich in a loose sense, i'm using andy's split between people who have a college degree and people who have only a high school degree. raise your hands becom if you ha college degree. every time i say rich i mean you. so the rich folks, the upload third are living only with themselves and us to also at the bottom. rich kids are increasing going to school only with other rich kids and going to good schools, and poor kids are increasingly going to for schools with only poor kids. there is of course a significant racial and segregation in american but what i'm talking
about is not just about race, its social class and growing rapidly. even in terms of who we marry. rich folks are only marrying other rich folks and poor folks are only marrying poor folks if they get married at all. that sociological segregation into increasingly living in separate world. that has effects on kids. now i want to step back in a short, i'm going to try to make, this is going to be my powerpoint. can you see my fingers? what we call this is a scissors graph. what it reflects is lots and lots of data showing over the last 30 or 40 years what's happening to kids coming from affluent homes and what's happening to kids coming from impoverished homes. college educated homes and high school educated homes. there's a crap like that in terms of how many parents of you have that are still in your life.
rich kids are absolutely just as likely as they ever were, maybe more likely than they were in the '70s and 80s to have two parents in their lives. poor folks for the reasons we have talked about are quite unlikely to actually objectively unlikely, probably two-thirds of what i'm calling for kids don't have to parents in their lives. but there are lots of other measures and on going to go too quickly because time is short but i want to give you a kind of a pastiche of all the ways in which lives of rich kids and for kids have emerged in america over my adult lifetime. basically all these trends start what i personally first started to vote. i think there's an explanation that i somehow caused this problem by moving into adulthood. there's a crap like that for test scores big increasingly rich kids are scoring higher on various tests, and poor kids or
not. there's a gap like that for what we called goodnight moon time. that is the amount of time parents spend interacting with the kids. that graph looks like this. it's got up for poor kids, also giving more time with mom. it's mostly mom, reading to them and so one. but it's going up so much more rapidly among college educated americans that my grandchildren who are all living in what i'm calling rituals, that is their parents have a college degree, they are on average getting 45 minutes a day more time with mom and dad interacting with them. we know in the last 10 years we've learned how important, that's really crucial for brain development at an early time. in some sense the goodnight moon cap is really consequential. part of the reason for the goodnight moon cap is the are two parents reading to the rich families and only one parent reading to the poor family.
another gap that looks like that is the amount of money. spent on what's called develop mental activities. think of it as the amount of money spent on summer camp and piano lessons and hockey shoes and trips to france and so on. huge increase among parents, my kids coming from affluent homes gone up to about nearly $7000 a year on piano lessons and summer camp and so on. no increase at all to people in the lower hierarchy. they are down to about seven or $800 to you. you might think who cares about summer camp were going to paris or whatever? the people who have affluent know that it matters for the kid and they are investing in their kid. but the poor parents can't. i gap like that, trying to use a lot of examples. i cap like that were family dinners sitting down. family dinners have got to love
it out of style so i'm not sure you know what i mean. i'm not talking about thanksgiving. mom, dad and the kids sitting down. we know from quite careful analysis that city down and having to do with your kids every night think how did your day go is important. it's correlated with lifetime income if you have more time, how's your day. it's not that the poor moms don't want to do that but one of the more actually heroic features in the book called "our kids: the american dream in crisis" which is published a single black mamba for the lead to we asked her about family dinner. she's working so hard. really deeply admire. she's working so hard on her own to earn enough money so she can move her family to a slightly less dangerous neighborhood, and we started talking about family dinners and she said honey, we ain't got time for all but how should they stuff. she's right. she's making the right decision to protect her children actually
all that how's your day stuff, the absence of that is going to be a permanent handicap for kids as they grow. there's a gap like that for extracurricular activities, band, chorus insulin. my colleagues do you think that a talk as if i thought high school football was a solution to all of america's problems. the fact of the matter is we know from hard work, hard research i mean, taking part in extracurricular activities actually does increase your soft skills, the ability to do teamwork, your grit, determination. what my mom used to call sticktoitiveness. devolder and that whether you're blocking the blocking families on the football field. i played football in high school and i was lousy at it but i learned you had to every day go out and hit the blocking dummy. i wasn't offensive lineman. the job of an offensive lineman is basically throw your body in
front of a big giant that's coming at you. i was lousy so often the giant went right by me. occasionally i would successfully blocked the giant and the quarterback would get all the glory. that was a valuable lesson. i'm not joking, really valuable lesson for the killer you have to work hard and often other people on the team would get the benefit. there's a gap like that. used to be working-class and middle-class kids took part in extra curricular activities. chorus and band and all that but not now. why? because we started charging. this is obscene. we started charging gets to play high school football. roughly $1800 a year. for two kids in high school, if your annual income is $200,000, $1800 to play sports. but if your annual income is $18,000, who in their right mind is going to spend 10% of their total family income in high school the ball?
the answer is fewer and fewer poor people. it's not the most important example but we did that. that's not something that was happening. we decided to charge people after having most of the 20th century just if you are a kid you got to do those things and now you only get to do those things are prepared can ante up the money. there's lots of other of these gaps. there's a gap like that in church attendance, in involvement in too many organizations. middle-class kids or upper-class kids, college educated kids are deeply involved in all of social networks. poor kids increasingly, this is the point i want to emphasize, poor kids in america are increasingly alone. they can't trust anybody. they can't trust that parents often because of the fragile families. they can't trust their neighbors because they're concentrated in poor neighborhoods. they can't trust their schools. they can't trust their church. they are about as a note and
there's a gap like that in terms of trust for other people because working-class kids, it's not that they're paranoid. in fact, underlies institutions under the people are not trustworthy. here's the way to think about it. all kids do dumb things. rich kids, poor kids, black kids, white kids, your kids, my kids do so dumb things. when an applicant does dumb things, instantly airbags inflate. to protect the kid from the worst consequences of that dumb mistake to allow it to be a learning experience. if one am i gradually got involved with drugs the first thing i would do so in the best lawyer in town and the second thing is to find the best rehab facility in town. airbags. but if they forget does exactly the same thing, no airbags. there's a lot of other big examples of this. i want to just and by saying why did this happen? there's a lot of specific
reasons why but from my point of view the most important thing is captured by the fact that when my parents in the 1950s in a small town talked about doing things for our kids, we've got to the swimming pool for our kids. investment in a swimming pool. they did not mean a swimming pool in our backyard for my sister and me. everybody in town to a look at higher taxes so we can have a swimming pool at the high school. but over the past 30 or 40 years the meaning of our kids has shriveled, has been wrote. so now, including and my hometown, if you talk to, my hometown now, if you talk to people, you hear people talk about our kids, he made their own biological kids. once upon a time one of our kids you talk to people, they are not my kid can somebody else's kids. let someone else were you about them. that's the fundamental social change that has left some of our kids, poor kids, living and
headed toward a different universe that's unfair, economic and gaza. we've got to do something about it. [applause] >> this session solve one problem. i never had an airbag. my father's philosophy was let the little credit swing. so i now understand that your better for knowing. michael, you have caused me a problem. my a problem. michael holds that if this panel were too broke, the word used was procreation rates would fall. when my wife years that a great expert said that about me, i'm going to be in big trouble. if you get a call from a wide i trust you will explain you were
joking. so i'm supposed to talk to you about policy. let me reinstate what we learned this morning. i think i've lived long enough to know that this was not always accepted. the first thing is that we have a huge decline in marriage. i have some wonderful charts to show you. you can imagine them by age, however you look at it, marriage rates have declined with the exception as bob points out a college educated women, and their decline in marriage stop in about 1980. they get much -- they get married much later. we've made a great discovere dit takes great minds like the ones on this panel to understand that if marriage rates decline, sex does not. and if marriage rates decline and sex keeps up especially among cohabiting couples, we have non-vertebrates galore. 70% of black kids are born outside marriage.
something like 45% of hispanic it in the oval rate is over 30%. these kids are born into disadvantage. especially in the center's three conclusions we can draw from this. the first thing is i've never done through a powerpoint before but here we are. first of all these trends lead to higher poverty rates. the probability of being an poverty they delete a female-headed family is five times greater than it is if you live in a married couple family. we've been taking kids out of married couples family appointed in this situation in which they are five times as likely to be poor. much higher poverty rates. secondly, exacerbates income inequality, not the type of the top but it creates more people at the bottom so becomes more difficult to do with income inequality. third and by far the most
important, the journal she referred to has of articles that show this, diminished child development. we have much worse child development in many areas. sara conveniently thanks probably a thousand articles with the diverse types of impact on kids. so this is a national crisis. it's a national crisis. it's affecting our gnp. it's affecting behavior into schools. it's affecting all aspects of american life as bob has shown so well. we talked about some policies to address it and we do. we have i think five policies we have tried that's useful just to talk about these and see how well we've done. the tax code, a lot of people think the tax code has disincentives for marriage. reducing nonmetal births, they would have an impact on poverty. might have an impact on marriage
and so forth. something that we tried in the bush administration spent over $1 billion on which is marriage education. there's also counseling and all kinds of things with young couples that had a baby together. could you help them to understand each other better and get along and so forth and eventually get married? and then we have the same thing but with the committee wide working with churches, possible a sissy about how important marriage is to get and support. finally, helping young men. several panelists pointed out how bored young men are. i don't think it's possible to explain the tax code, even this little part but i know i can't do it without a powerpoint. let me just tell you the main point which is i don't think the tax code is a huge problem. it's a vastly overrated how important the tax code is and incentives. they give you one example. michael at the great western
years ago and his colleagues to pay for a national study, national survey of american families and a very smart guy and a lady at the urban institute analyzed the data for the couples who are cohabiting and living around 200% of poverty. so roughly speaking they are low income or poor. the question is what would happen if they got married. what would happen if they got married? a careful analysis of showed that most of them do not get public benefits or do not get temporary assistance for needy family. those that do would lose some money. but they would more than make it up with the earned income tax credit and the child tax credit. so the tax benefits are so great for them, and the reason for those of you who know the way the eitc works, up to about $15,000, earnings up to 15,000 you get more and more money,
serious money, up to way over $4000 out of the earned income tax credit, another thousand for tax credit and other tax led benefits. then there's a flat area and then it faces out. so many of these couples have low income that they're mostly in where your rate is increasing. went a combined income make it more money. i'm not saying there's no penalty in the eitc but for those of you from the finance committee of the ways and means committee i wouldn't spend too much time traveling to sell to try to find these marriage penalties. he would be a good thing to do. i'm all for it i don't think it's good to make a big difference. besides that the research on whether those penalties have an impact on people's marriage rates is not encouraging. it doesn't suggest they have a big impact. that's the first. marriage penalties i don't think i'm going to make a big difference.
the second is benefits of reducing nonmarital births. it i think we are onto something this could make a big difference. reduce poverty rates, lower abortion rates, definitely lower abortion rates. very clear in studies that were quite good. letterspacing and babies which increase prenatal care, less postpartum depression, more education for mothers and not least important series cost savings with kevin. there's been a number of benefit cost is that show very substantial savings. we have something now. we been able to do this. we've done it for teenagers. since 1991, teen birth rates have declined every year except to. i think it's worth stepping. i wish i had more time. i like to go into it with you but it can be done. birth control can make a huge difference and it has played a role in the reduction of teen pregnancy. from this big study so i am referring to about using new
technology called larks, long acting reversible contraception, ieds but other forms as well. they lead to almost zero pregnancy rate. way better than the pilgrim way better than any other method of birth control and get this. 70% of low-income mothers when given a choice prefer larcs. at last we really could control fertility and couples who decide to control had a foolproof method. you take up once, and less redistrict you don't have to worry about taking a pill before any action. so we have a good way to do this. we have studies that show it works. i'm telling you this is a big part of the solution. if we could have better means, give birth control to people who want it and do it in a professional way that includes counseling and so forth. someone is trying to force them
to have babies. then i want to talk just a one-sided about the bush nss. i was involved with and so i'm highly biased. they didn't work. it was greatly disappointing to spend $1 billion with beautiful studies, a lot of credit from the scholarly world which is unheard of in the republican administration because we did this rant aside all kinds of wonderful stuff. kc contributed some money to these. and at the end there was one site out of eight, 5000 people involved in this. a big deal. and one site had some impacts that were pretty impressive. it was oklahoma city. mike carey is always been that they didn't have anything else to do in oakland the city so they went, why we should be married to sessions and learn to get along with each other and fight in a friendly manner. they were really some impacts but even though stated except with one exception which gives me some encouragement which is
that there were more likely to be together still after 36 months. that only happened in that one out of eight sites, and it will be used to go back now and see but i don't think we can say that if we had good marriage education with counseling that we could really boost the birth rate among the people that already cohabit most of them and have had a baby together. padata needs of the group we wod like to invalids. we don't know how to do. finally, i wanted to say a few words about young man. several speakers have talked about young men. young men, i have sons and i was a young man, too, hard to tell right now but young men are a problem. they have a lot of bad behaviors. which ones, too. they drink a lot. they are reckless. and guess what. women are destiny. they know that. so at the least they want a man who has a good job and will be trust with the and will be a
good father and so forth, and a lot of guys are not like that. you are not like that at all and it's subversively related to their income. so low income guys are even worse than middle-class guys or at least they don't recover either time they are 22, 24. but we have a lot of programs. i'm a little optimistic we could do a lot better. we know a lot about education and training. we can help these young men. we have one study called career academies that was done in eight sites, followed for eight years, and the guys who have been in career academies which involve actual experience in a workforce in with mentoring when they were in junior high and most in high school, sites around the country, they made more money almost 2000 a year, and confirming they were more likely to be married and more likely to live with her children. we have several ways we can influence the income of males.
i think that's an area that we should make further investment. we should do more research. it's possible to be somewhat optimistic that if we did a better job trying to help young men, and we will learn more as we go along. i think that's an area that we really should exploit. so let me end with two things. the first one is that my wonderful colleague and i had done research on the imports of marriage rates and the changes in marriage rates for poverty. if we had the same marriage rate today that we had in 1970 without spending any additional money, assuming other things are equal as economists always do, our poverty rate would be 25% lower. government has to run just to stay in place in the poverty rates because these demographic changes. that is no program that reduces 25% accept marriage.
let me read these conclusions. the advantage of marriage for children's well being are likely to be hard to replicate through policy interventions other than those that bolster marriage rates. we are moving in the wrong direction and we are having a hard time getting out of it. [applause] >> thank you all. that is the best possible graduate similar on the state of assam and family policy. so i'm going to start by playing the role of a slightly thick graduate student to get us started. so let me ask here, there seems to be a remarkable unanimity on things that i had thought were very controversial. all of you seem to agree unstable, complex household are bad for the raising of children,
that it's rooted in the decline of the blue-collar economy, the atomization of community and changes in family structure and social norms. does everyone agree on this? once a debate that's taking place in academia on this? what did you find the status of knowledge here in washington with policy people on that side of issue? so please anyone kind of china and. press the button. >> okay. so i think that there has been over time a reluctance among progressives to first of all acknowledge the importance of marriage, and to parents were kids. it started on campuses. it was many years before anything has been a revolution among scholars who are progressives about fable so explicitly as sara the said, it's an elegantly in 1994 in a
book i think i started this among scholars, and everybody else on the panel said the same thing. so there has been a movement among scholars. i think less so among politicians. it seems to be that especially democrats are really unwilling to say how crucial marriage is, that it's a mistake to babies outside marriage and that you need to get married before you have children. if we could send that message i our politicians, ministers, people in communities that above all politicians come it would make a big difference. i could be wrong. i'm sure the people, in fact they were promised at the beginning about a democratic politician that i would like to go through speeches and see what kind he said this does constituents i think that's part of the problem. >> bob? >> as far as the movement of views in the academy, we would probably all agree there's been a growing consensus that it is both and. it's not either or. it's true that some people, that
it's both and, be clear, there's a pretty broad consensus now that marriage is good for kids. everybody agrees that marriage has declined, there's no debate about the decline in the working-class. there's some disagreement about how much of that is economic in its origin and how much is normative in its origin. i think almost everybody including everybody here would agree it's both and. it's not either or. they would be all of this agreement is the most economics are mostly normative? that's not crucial here. as i talk to people in washington on both sides of the aisle, i think that consensus has not yet reached political elites. i think there's still much more it's either this or that among
politicians. i agree with ron that there's a lot of democratic politicians who are skeptical about blaming normative change for the collapse of the family. but there's another aspect of this which is what we do about it? they are larger numbers of scholars who think actually the normative change is bigger. i think it's a big deal but i don't know of any proven or unproven policy suggestions that would change the norms. and, therefore, it does seem, we are all in this bipartisan good feeling on the table, but i think we are good the are a lot of people on your side, the republican side of the aisle, who make the point about changing norms and act as if we knew what to do about that but we don't know what to do about that.
>> sara? >> i think the rub comes between company for all the great about these points. i think the rub is between can you just get people married, is that going to be enough? and i'd like to say that, the policies i recommend, we need to give these women to delay pregnancy and wait longer. but if they don't have a man who is there who can bring home some bacon, it's not going to work with them. you get asked them to not have children for ever. and so we have to do something about the condition of the young men that they're going to be partnered with. even if we take all that and give them a marriage license they won't stay married if you don't have any resources. that's a norm about men needing to be a good provider. we don't want to change that norm. i guess if we did then maybe there would be more marriages,
but then it would be all of this instability. so that wouldn't gain us anything. there's a lot of the culture we do need to say don't have these children, don't have an out of wedlock, find a partner. but then there has to be a partner there for them at some point. i really like ron's idea about the current academies because that is as far as i know the only program that has shown benefits on earnings and marriage. >> let me take the example of long acting using effective contraceptives which can be used for reducing fertility got to get a lower or moderate income woman a reason to want to postpone to get into the clink he can't hang u up a shingle and say larcs babble here. in getting her in, giving the reason it's hard to do. >> tab and make a quick point?
very quick. i don't agree with it. it's tru true in part but it's t completely true. why? these large experiment shovel a lot of poor women are willing, who say they're going to have sex within the next year, maybe have a normal part of what they're willing to take these because they would like to delivedeliver it and want to do because their pitching education or they're working to new job and so forth. we have place huge responsibility of our policy terms in washington on single parents. that's part of our strategy and we better will do it because we are not going to fix the marriage rate anytime soon. >> a brief response. the studies abroad is citing our high quality studies but they're all volunteers. people came to the clinic alternative that doesn't say the general public will be doing this. i'm in favor of larcs. we just wanted to be too much of a stir because i think it's hard to government and will have more political recesses and would actually think.
>> aires tumor points but didn't come up a lot of people who might be interested in and particularly in the policy realm works how does all this affect early childhood education, ping pong interaction between parents and children in a long-term effects on the? it's frightening to me because it seems like it creates a durable disadvantage that's hard to make up for later. in a similar way have a toxic stress you're talking about affects parenting styles which also seem to be community hated across generation in a way that's sort of complicates this work. >> that was sort of mind, the point i was unable to talk about all this instability complexity. it increases the stress. all the numbers were before, but that child dashed by the time
the child was five years old. this is all going on in early childhood when the children need the most attention, they need a mother an and a father to be the most stable and secure. and so i think that all this churning, there's a lot of research that talks about household chaos that's bad for kids. attempting, irregular schedules, disrupting routines. this is what happens, the mother breaks up with one partner. that creates a loss and that's sad and she finds a new border so she falls in love. that's a good feeling but it doesn't, it's not a good beating with the children they may be that man is jealous at the time the mother spends with the job because he wants her attention. it's not his child. all of these competing, think of it as a competing activities that when you try to combine the search for a partner with his early parenting. it's just not a good thing to try to put together. >> one follow-up.
have you seen any programmatic interventions when it comes to that like things that make a difference? >> go ahead. >> i think actually that there's pretty good evidence that if you provide coaching for parents, it's mostly coaching of mons, in principle it could be a bad but most of coaching of moms, you can move the needle. and that providing both professional early childhood education, that is, not glorified day care but professionally provided early childhood education, early, not just pre-k by birth to three or four, combined with coaching of the parents, of the moms, that does with the deal and it has a very high roi, return on investment. it's not cheap, but the payoffs
are sufficiently large that it makes sense to do. i kind of hope that maybe one of the next frontier to which people begin to agree. in an earlier day neighbors and extended family would've provided that kind of support to a troubled mom, but that's disappeared and now i think we can begin to think about ways of providing that anymore programmatic way. >> aei and brookings just when a group of 16 scholars, eight on the left it on the right. we publish a report effort would not disagree i think with what bob just said, but that child the coast with high quality preschool or even a month who gets coached, they still live in a very difficult household. they live in a very difficult neighborhood. and more than likely a kid goes to a lousy school. our recommendation is we need to deal aggressively on all three fronts at one time.
we need to do something about families. we need to greatly improve education including preschool education. we need to do something about work especially with regards to young men. i will make one more comment and that is, i think i'm the author of about the preschool literature. i find it discouraging, the evidence that we are able to produce long-term impacts at anything like a broad scale is quite weak. we have a deficit programs that have produced even recently the boston preschool program, for example, we don't know anything about the long-term. head start has shown it probably does not produce long-term effects with some exception. we are not putting kids, our kids are in average or worse settings generally for preschool now. we have an immense task to improve the holy of those programs or we are not going to get the effects that bob is
talking about. >> any further thoughts? we're going to go to questions very shortly but can i make one? i'm going to do one more. just sitting in for some conservatives in the audience in office, what is the place and role of moral judgment? even when social and economic trends push in one direction. there are many people who choose to the right thing. they make sacrifices. they stay even in difficult circumstances. how do you count that role of religious conviction and ethics in this? and more broadly just the role of religion in family structure. is it relevant, irrelevant, where do you put it? >> if you meet at the individual
level does becoming more religious make you more likely to be inappropriate relationship and to raise your kids well and so on, there is actually mixed evidence on that. i agreed the evidence myself as there's a modest, a really modest, effect of what you might describe. but most of these poor single moms or the fragile families we are talking about, most of them are in areas that are high churched, not low church. they are in communities that are high churched, not low church. the african-american community is the most religious in america and lots of the problems are concentrated there. i do not mean at all this is a racial problem. i do not mean that. i think religion is not a kind of a cure-all. you know i am far from being hostile to the role of religion.
on the contrary on a big fan of religious institutions but i think the way religious institutions could play a really powerful role is not merely in providing services to individual poor people, which they do now. religious people are nice and are generous, but by helping to foster this, i hope there's consensus that we've got to do something about these poor kids and not just in our private lives but in our public life. i have said repeatedly, publicly, that i think engagement of america's major religious communities, evangelical, catholic, rossett amateurish, others, they're involved in this issue, almost a necessary condition and almost a sufficient condition for forming the national political will to make the investments that we need to do. >> i just want to mention something else on a different subject but just as a. i think government has been doing something to make things
much worse, that is our incarceration policy. i've been doing studies now, the kids in third grade that are being suspended and expelled from school. i'm sure these kids have a social and emotional problems are i'm sure they're acting out on causing trouble but when you take them out of school they don't learn that day. and then, of course, it just goes on and on and what's been happening to the teenagers. i think there's a great consensus now. that's my sense that we're going to stop that, change that. but i do think the disproportionate effect of those policies since 1980 on young men are part of this story. >> let's go to some questions, please. right here. say who you are and a short question. [inaudible]
>> just speak loudly. [inaudible] >> so the question is are you saying that level of college educated black and hispanic women marrying at the same rate as white women? that's the main question i have. and then, it's interesting other foreign policy goals you don't mention making college free or affordable for young people if the research is so strong but that is the primary correlation between marriage. >> let me repeat the first question in case people didn't hear it, which is there's been increasing rates of college graduation among black and hispanic women. are we seeing them marrying?
the answer is yes, marriage rates are higher for well educated minorities as well as for non-hispanic whites. the problem for well educated minority women to study well educated men. many of them are quote-unquote marrying down. that is, marrying someone with less education than they have. it's hard to find a college graduate partner. >> i think college is part of the solution, that's for sure. we have billions of dollars to basically give away for college. we have big federal programs. the problem is a lot of low income kids that go to college fail only if for some reason. then they are doubly affected because they not only didn't get the degree but now many of them have a big build up a but they don't, they can't get the kind of job to pay. we've got to do something about that. should try to identify every single low income kids, minority kid who could go to college, a good college or average college, and help them do it.
and not accumulate debt. we should do that. the second thing and more important is a much larger group of low-income kids could profit from community colleges and participations in programs that teach them to be welders and electricians and so forth. they could make a day, 60,000 figure which be a huge improvement ever greatly increase the chances they would bury and begin to fix this whole problem. college is the key but don't forget i think community college is even more important than four year colleges. >> college is really important, and the data show that based on test scores and family income, dumb rich kids are more likely to graduate from college than smart poo poor kids but that chk the data suggests to me most of the handicap, preventing poor kids from getting to college,
but thousand poor kids into college happens while before anybody is even thinking about college. this goes back way deep into the lifecycle. college tuition is i think not a big part of the problem. i'm not saying it's not a problem at all but it's nothing like as big as all these earlier stuff we've been talking about. secondly, pre-college education, that is making college education forget everybody would disproportionately benefit rich folks because they could afford to pay for the kids to go to college and i would be a huge, i'm not tried to make a statement about in the election campaign but in a way i am. i think it's wasteful resource of all taxpayers to pay for bill gates kid to get a college degree. >> next, please. >> i'm from congressman john larson's office. i have two quick questions. what about families who have suffered a loss like they were married but then when his parents died early on?
and also what about different kinds of marriages between, like man and a woman over maybe a cohabitation situation, sorry, woman and a woman or a cohabitation situation that is more of the union and just living together? >> sara has a paper, i think that is a preventable on marriage between gay couples. it's reviewed in future 200 you can find online, very nice arranged online. i was a generally become, the conclusion, correct me if i'm wrong, that is the art effects, they are modest. that we do not have evidence that would be a bad idea to allow gay couples to have kids. and i say that because i've been institute -- in my career, i
think the evidence is that if you can get kids out of foster care and out of that homes and into stable families can't even if both parents are women or men, they kids are way better off. i don't think there's any evidence to contradict that and a lot of evidence to support it spent let me address the issue of parental loss if a parent dies. we find the kids who parents died are doing better than kids who parents divorced. why is that? it may be because we know how to handle parental death. we have been doing it for centuries. we rally around the family. they have life insurance. their support systems that are not there due to a divorce. they may also be that death is more random. except for traffic accidents. traffic actions are fairly random whereas divorce tends to be concentrated on particular kinds of people. what we know about the loss of events suggests it's not just the parenting in or out of home
but how would you with a situation that seems to matter. >> in the back. >> thanks for this. i just want to comment on sara's plan. i used to work for someone named dan rostenkowski. after his retirement jail he said we are letting the young black men rot in jail. and so my comment is that i think we need to make more investments in young men, their behaviors, et cetera, et cetera. once a union happens and a child is produced, that regardless of whether it was a marriage over cohabitation, we have the expectation that the mail is going to give support and also tended to be involved in the lives of the children. i know there's an issue of domestic violence, and i think, i'm the conservative in the sense that i think churches, synagogues, mosques need to talk
about respect between the sexes and what marriage is all about. and that if we make men have a job and invest in them and get rid other bad behaviors, that marriage issue will go away. do you agree or disagree? >> i agree. and if i didn't i wouldn't say so publicly. we have been friends for many years. i don't want to dispute you but in this case i don't. however, the problem is, the main point i made, you don't take notes when a topic i've noticed this in the past. [laughter] the problem is we don't know how to do those things. we are just unsuccessful activity they could do it that's what's at stake. that's why we have this meeting, that we have debated this topic the area i am the most optimistic about is doing something for young men. we do have good programs that work if we are willing to make more investment and focus on young men.
cause a lot of problems with the women's movement but if we do that and can get men in programs like career academies and many other programs i think we could have an impact. >> on to incarceration, i can't resist on the incarceration comment and others, out in california is probably the biggest criminal justice expert in ongoing in the nation right now, which was the court mandated lessening of the state prison why some 33,000. the early results of the effect of that are coming in now. notably in the journal that i edit them and i will foreshadow that by saying later this month we're going to release a couple studies that show that violent crime with the release of these low-level offenders, i'd crime, there is no update at all, even with recidivism we are seeing mixed results by county. some of them come recidivism rates are better depending on how the counties have handled
it. >> i just had one question, so coming from the state of utah, something is highly valued is the institution of marriage ended almost more valued and preached two young men and young women ages almost buy it more than education or japanese programs. i guess after hearing your studies about the success of young people who go through education, is this a traditional norm that we would want to change, or discontinue? i guess what i'm saying is the preaching of the institution of marriage is a high value over things like education. >> i showed my students an introduction to sociology a map last week, divorce rates in states around the country and out west. there's high divorce everywhere except this one place called
utah. the only religious group in the u.s. that is substantially lower divorce rates than others is a latter day saints. the social cohesion, the teachings will he do seem to great a different sense of family that elsewhere. i admire it greatly. >> so in the family study i did, these women, and men, they want to get married. it's not a matter that they think marriage is better forget the they hope it will happen to them. but then they don't and then they get pregnant. so it's not just changing i don't think it's just preaching the importance of marriage. i think there has to be a much bigger support system. in a way which are describing in utah is kind of what bob is saying about our kids. as a larger group we felt sort of more community which you certainly give in utah.
uto, those are kids of the church. and, in fact, i have friends come and to think about getting divorced the community comes in big time and counsels them and try to work with them and help within. so it isn't just the attitude. it's all that other stuff. >> starting a light, can i be one more question in the front row? >> thanks. one of the consensus point that's been emerging in d.c. i would like to wait in on a special round issue of young men, which is expanding the eitc which has been so successful for women and children to those without custodial kids on their tax records and figuring out what kind of effect we think that might have on some of the things you bring up about marriageability and economic stability. and if you could wait in on that, i'd love to hear gore
thought. >> i think it's a good idea because it would get more money into their hands and make them more attractive. i think they, it would also, the returns to work. i think they need to be working. they don't just need money. they need a job. >> ron, did you have -- >> i agree with that for sure. part of the theory is that it's like earned income tax credit, that it will suck people into the labor force. .net we are paying $500 to men if they get a job so that, that's not enough. thinking is around 2000, extreme in your applet is a 2000. we will learn a lot from the. that's a good way to do policy, do these big studies. and both ryan and the president has said 2000 should be able to pass the. it's not that much money. we should pass it and do it. i worried it wouldn't be enough
to suck enough of these young men into the labor force but let's find out. >> first of all i'm afraid our time is up. i've never seen a topic for which 90 minutes was more of an injustice. it deserves more than that and i've really never seen a better panel on this topic. so please join me in thanking all our panel. [applause] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
>> this weekend at the c-span cities tour hosted by our charter communications cable partner take you to greenville, south carolina, to explore the city's history and literary culture. on a booktv -- >> in 1939, september 1939 when europe went to war, our allies primarily england and france looked to washington, d.c. for goods and materials that they needed. washington, d.c. looked down to the textile capital of the world and all of a sudden it would contracts came funneling into this area asking the mills to begin producing for the war effort, initiative our allies and then, of course, for the united states as well. >> and on american history tv -- >> we are standing right here and this was a pretty nasty spot.
it's hard to believe that looking at it one of the best parks in the country but this really was a very depressed, nasty place it at its a great story of how a community can get behind a park and start to appreciate it, cherish it river and its waterfall again. >> watch c-span cities tour saturday at noon eastern on c-span2's booktv. ..
[inaudible conversations] >> good morning and welcome to this very timely event that we have entitled europe migration crisis a status report in way forward that. my name is doris meister, senior fellow here at the migration policy institute in washington dc. i direct our us program work and so i am particularly interested in hearing my colleague this morning. he is just back from having spent six months in europe and we have not even had a chance to debrief internally, so this is fresh from the presses in terms of eight extraordinary
experience, extradite topic of interest not only to us, but everyone in the world. i want to note-- of course, welcome the people here in the audience, but we are also live streaming and we have c-span this morning and so we want to be sure to welcome those audiences and hope that they can participate by twitter questions when we get to the q&a period and in order to do that twitter is: eighteen migration policy or event #mpi discuss, so let me now introduce dmitri a little more fully. you know him as a cofounder of the migration policy institute's , as our president for many years now, president emeritus and currently president of migration policy institute europe. he has, as i said it, spent the
last six months in europe around the issues of this extraordinary migration crisis that is unfolding in that part of the world. he has spent a lot of time in the public eye, but much more time during this period talking with leaders throughout the european union and among the various individual countries. countries that are so involved in this issue. he has been meeting with officials in the european commission, the european parliament, european council. he has traveled to a number of the key capitals, particularly germany, sweden and austria, which have been at the center of these issues. he has also just come from and to an days of the meeting of the transatlantic council on migration, which is an initiative of the migration policy institute's. there meeting a few weeks ago in
germany elected in one place senior officials as well as experts, ministers and others on these issues, again, to talk about what he will tell us today. what is the status of things and what is the way forward, so all of this, of course, is informed by a career of scholarship and deep experience in migration issues around the world and with that, i am sure we are all interested, as i am as i said at the beginning in hearing his perceptions, ideas, thoughts and insights. demetrios papademetriou. >> thank you very much, doris. it's good to be back. it is nice to see familiar faces, even if i don't know everyone's name, at least i know
so many of you after months of being that american width of the greek name on the other side of the pond or even worse what it is that i am. i think that's-- that in my far too many accolades doorsteps on allow me to say how many decades of looking at this issue and having started as a european missed in my dissertation was on this issue. to that time europe was just six countries and that may give you a sense of when i am talking about, but i came back from being in residence at mpi europe, which i founded, in 2011 and my colleagues were a great host, great people to have
arguments with. just like my colleagues are here in washington, which is refreshing. i am very mindful of the fact, primarily because doors and michelle and others have told me again and again in the last 12 hours, 24 hours i got to be crisp and short, so i will try to speak for about 30 minutes because the value of these kinds of events is in the conversation that follows in your questions. i cannot imagine what it is that is on your mind and i will not try to, but i do want to know what questions you have and maybe i will be able to provide at least my take on the answers. i will start with a few observations. i will be very quick and elliptical here. in a sense, europe, particularly the european institution and by that, i mean, the three
institutions-- there are many more, but the three main institutions that exist in brussels. of course, the european commission being the one that most of us know about and hear from etc. we do know that there is a european parliament that can be a conversation as to what does the parliament do. that will be a conversation or different meeting. of course, something that this side of the atlantic all too often are not quite perfectly clear about, which is the european consult that happens to have the unfortunate name of the word council and some people confuse it with the council of year but buescher, etc., but the european council is essentially a gathering place of all of the heads of states. sometimes-- they are the
ultimate decision-maker, although if the president of the european commission was sitting in the audience, he may have slightly different take as to who the ultimate decision-maker is. then, i will talk a little bit about some facts because there are some things that i find even in europe the way that we talk about these things, we sort of don't pay attention to these facts. we tend to think that, you know, the crisis is a european crisis. i will explain what part of the crisis is the european crisis and what part of the crisis is not a european crisis and it is rather a crisis for a very few states and why. then, i'm going to have-- we are going to put up there or you have already on your table a map because a map of that part of europe-- ignore their western western part.
it gives you a big sense as to why certain countries are clearly on the pathway of all of this development and some other ones sit back and observe and they feel perfectly free to throw stones or participate when they feel like it etc. etc. etc. then, i'm going to give a very quick five ways that we might start regaining control over this particular crisis because my sense is and my sense now is in the minority position, it used it to be in the majority position. i thought this was real crisis for europe and now most of the europeans and the officials of europe are far to the right of me saying it is a real exits uncial crisis, so all of a sudden i find myself in a position where i no longer am
them darkest person in the room, rather i am the light just person in the room. that doesn't happen to me very often. so, let me say a few things about brussels. so many ways brussels was not created to be able to deal with the geopolitical crisis. it has very weak foreign policy apparatus. it does not have an intense policy and does not really have the tools of statecraft that can actually address crisis of this type. it is intended to be a place in which states collaborate with each other under either the commission, but most of the council and try to get together in order to deal with other kinds of day-to-day crisis and build more and more muscle, if
it were, more and more responsibility. i call it more europe and many people call it that and that is a conversation that we can have again at another time. brussels tends to be slow in anything that deals with difficult issues. it was intended to be slow, it is sort of like the u.s. senate was intended to be the body that will put the brakes on all of the other people in the house of representatives when they act in haste to. its tools are long-term ones, developed in legislation, passed in loss, in other words. it takes a long time and you need to do all of your preparatory work and still need to pass it, negotiate with far too many others etc. etc. it only knows how to act bureaucratically because it really is not the political body p read the public body has to be the heads of state and there are far too many people who still mistrust the commission etc. etc.
some of these things are earned and some of the ones are fair, so this is always necessary for us to be keeping an eye on those things because if we are being too critical, i suspect, that we will probably be wrong. if we are being too soft we are equally wrong, so we have to sort of creative path that allows us to do things in a way that makes sense. this is in a sense the glass is half empty kind of approach to brussels. can to do the kinds of things that it needs to do in the crisis that unfolds and changes and a sort of becomes something else. in a months time if you look at the data over the last six or seven months where people came from, how they entered europe,
what the composition of the flows are etc. etc., you see every month or two things are changing and rather dramatically. in other words, doris knows all about this and trying to deal with the us-mexico border. if you do a fairly good job in one part and less mindful of the entire 2000 miles then people are going to move it somewhere else and this is what we saw last year, the first half of the year in the previous year was all about the central mediterranean people trying to make it into italy, just one single-- run the middle of last year the numbers into italy from north africa-- africa is roughly the same as the number of the people who came through the greek islands, but at the end of the year the people who had been registered, in other words as we
all know the people have been registered coming through that aegean were not high under thousands. it might as well put on unknown number on top of that, while the numbers at the unity or had come through italy were about 150,000. and the flows, who is included in that also changed dramatically, so you have two sort of the on top of it and at the same time keep perspective, not that we all understand this. to be fair once more to the commission, the commissioners are dedicated europeans. the commission for the first time ever has been working with the commission now this place has been working with commission for about 15 years, very closely since 2002, in fact, as well as other states and it is
remarkable to me that after 14 years that we have been saying you have got to think and act as a whole of government in this regard. think and act horizontally. you have 20 commissioners. if you cannot engage the trade commissioner to do something for this crisis that will allow certain products produced by refugees and the local communities around those refugees from jordan, turkey then you're not really helping the cause. now, i understand very clearly from commissioners and all of that that thinking horizontally at six or seven or eight or nine mice-- must be engaged with its humanitarian, development, migration portfolios, trade and all that actually works together , which is a remarkable development as it were. don't waste the crisis however the people talked about this and of course, the consult is this
group that meets. last year met doesn't and a half times on an emergency-- think about you know, it takes three days out of the heads of states and their entire entourage who have a day job to do and you multiply that by what ever in the number of summonses and you realize there are 30, 40, 50 that did not do what they were supposed to do back home and impact tomorrow it will be the first summit of the year, thursday and friday in brussels to deal presumably with things that deal with the exemptions that the britts along from certain requirements of the union, but i suspect that right up there with-- it will be the
issues we are discussing today because those issues are the most critical issues that face in europe today. so, let's talk a little bit about-- this is indeed about the member states. european traditions could only go so far, do so much and they can only make progress if there is agreement among the vast majority of member states and the last thing that we have in europe at this time for the last six months and probably for the next several months is agreement. what we have in europe is complete splintering of opinions, oppositions among four or 56 different groups in state and i will go through those very good. the aid in the that regard-- i
do not have the map in front of me, but it will be geography, what you see if there, so let's see what it is that we see if there. most of the people last year particularly in the southern half of the year came through turkey. it doesn't mean that they came from turkey. the came through turkey because i was the easiest, cheapest and safest route to actually make it into your. this is indisputable. and if you again look at how that's map over there, how people would walk, hardly anyone walks. if you go to greece and for that matter the islands where you see all of these massive boats and that is the harbor for athens, this massive tourist boat that
can take two or 3000 people and often there is this sort of mass of humanity that builds out and that mass of humanity sort of separates into two groups. i sat there and observed it. one of them and that tends to be the smaller group are the relatively speaking well-heeled syrians and iraqi ends and iraqis that come, suitcases etc. they leave the porch from the side and you follow them there are a hundred buses, quality buses. we are talking about the kinds of things that are state of the art of buses and they go in it that their suitcases in the belly of the bus as they get on in those buses take them directly to the north of greece in order to basically go over to the former yugoslavia-- i have
to watch it here. republic of macedonia. the rest rush to take the train to athens. they will be in athens for a day or two or three. no one wants to stay in greece. i mean, the biggest problem that europe has is that they do not want to acknowledge the fact that it is the migrants who are not only writing the script is-- of what is going on, but also making all of these decisions about who goes where when, how. this is not about the state or anyone else having control of this. so, this will take a day or two or three before they can get to the border. they get to the border assisted or not assisted and by assisted i mean the aboveground kind of smuggling that takes place both
in turkey and then throughout much of europe. in other words, people simply take advantage of the opportunities, so if you're going to go into a public bus it can get much faster to the other end. no one wants to be registered in greece because if you get registered in greece possibly other might actually kick in, such as relation which would allow which would allow countries for their opinion in europe who send people back to greece by right, so they basically get to macedonia and then you follow the route macedonia to hungry was the best way to get there, direct and you have extreme ability to facilitate the movement of people.
everyone wants to facilitate movement because they went to move out turnstile understanding of how you deal with this until, of course, hungry decides to close everything. then, again, you see the logic of why people moved to the west in order to go and less direct group to croatia, austria, all of them essentially went into god's-- went in to get at least to this decades the promised land and there are two of them. germany and sweden. we can discuss the q&a by germany and why sweden, but in reality this is where most people want to go. sweden opened its doors, gave
permanent residents to people coming from syria and certain other nationalities within three months. which, of course acted and this is highly disputed in political circles, in europe and is part of this ugly argument involving several european member states, ugly argument against each other because the ones that have opened their doors say no, no, we are just acting in a humanitarian way and meeting obligations and the other one yes, but because you are doing this more and more people are coming, so that becomes a big arguments. has become a big arguments in europe and these kind of things just created sort of a classic enabler situation where you just basically try to stick the next guy with the problem.
you know, it is not your problem. it is their problem and you can do this in a number of ways, sometimes by closing borders, so you defer the flow. doesn't mean that much unless you think that's people who have used up an enormous amount of physical money who have taken chances to go through-- from lebanon or jordan to turkey all the way to the aegean, three or 400 of them died just last year going across the aegean and then through greece etc. etc. you think they are going to be intimidated because they will have to walk or take buses or taxis another hundred kilometers to the left or the right. this is silly stuff. they will do exactly what they want to do. by that time they are almost there in the almost there means they are going to get there and are they are going to be determined to get there and they actually do, so i have a
typology here about five or six different groupings of states. the ground zero in all of this are three states. greece, because vast majority of people are coming to and through greece. germany and sweden for the reasons that i mention. i know that you all realize that chancellor merkel made a magnificent gesture back in september of last year basically said i am going to ignore that government regulation and i am not sending anyone anywhere. we are going to will come real refugees. she was referring to syrians and the syrians who real refugees, but all of those things by the time social media gets hold of these things, those fine details sort of disappear.
is to give you an example, and the million plus people who came to germany last year, 150,000, it takes a long time to make another way from afghanistan or pakistan or bangladesh to make it all away into germany. so, then the next group of state are the people who say no. poland, czech republic, slovakia and hungary, there the blacks-- black sheep in all of this. they found a million different ways of saying, no, we won't take them. we are not response before the crisis. the crisis is germany's problem. no one really wants to come
here. we are not prepared for them and after all, aren't they muslims. and despite the fact that some of them voted for some sort of a european union relocation scheme that was forced down their throat that in september, october of last year, the fact is that they now basically say we are negative, so they are waiting to be sued by the commission, but before the commission sues them they are suing the commission and you have essentially all of those examples of complete disarray. then, you have the states that you can look at them and see over there croatia, austria and hungary. hungry belongs in two groups. these are the places that are responsible for defending or managing or whatever it is europe's second level borders. the burst-- first borders italy and greece, but in order to get
to those borders people go to the western balkans that are not member states of the european union, so that is the second line of defense and these countries are basically realizing that they are holding some cards and of those cards are that you're going to take these people in. if you don't take them we will stop them at the border because we are not going-- those numbers multiply so fast that if you have a closure for two or three weeks you could end up having to feed, clothe, take care of and eventually do something with 30, 40, 50, 60000 people. this is not what i'm talking about, small numbers, i mean, this is a tirade here, not a tyrant in small numbers. it is a tyranny of a very smooth -- large number. then you have the good citizens
and i include finland in that. these are places that actually act out their humanitarian instincts, as it were, and follow the roots. there is an ugly climate now and i'll get to witness i can't second. these are wealthy countries. they are generous, but in an even wave. in other words, yes, you'll know that denmark is not cooperating with the rest in terms of trying to take their share etc., but once you are in denmark, you really are highly protected. you have access to the best welfare system money can buy. the rest of them, they really believe in this stuff. you talk to the swedes whether it's an average swedish person