Return to Transcripts main page
QUEST MEANS BUSINESS
British Prime Minister Defends Handling of Brexit; Streep Slams Weinstein After Movie Mogul Fired; Behavior Expert Wins Novel Economics Prize. Aired 4-5p ET
Aired October 9, 2017 - 16:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[16:00:00] RICHARD QUEST, CNN HOST: Closing Bell and the Dow Jones Industrial is off just a fraction. Quiet days trading because today is
Columbus Day in the United States. Banks are closed. The markets were open and one, two, three. A robust gavel brings trading to a close. It's
Monday. It is the ninth of October.
Tonight, determined to deliver, says Theresa May, as s defends her handling of the Brexit process.
Meryl Streep is calling for victims to speak out after Harvey Weinstein is sacked over sexual harassment. And Nudge to Nobel, Richard Thaler wins the
biggest prize in economics.
I'm Richard Quest live from the world's financial capital, New York City, a shot of Columbus Circle on Columbus Day, where of course, I mean business.
Good evening, tonight, the British Prime Minister is putting a brave face on Brexit. As a new round of talks gets under way, less than a week after
Theresa May's disastrous speech to her Conservative Party conference. The Prime Minister began the day meeting with business leaders. British firms
say they have to get ready for life after Brexit and they are frustrated over how much uncertainty still remains. In Parliament, Mrs. May vowed to
get Brexit right for business and the British people.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
THERESA MAY, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: Mr. Speaker, a lot of the day-to-day coverage is about process. But this on the other hand is vitally
important. I am determined to deliver what the British people voted for and to get it right.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
QUEST: CNN's Diana Magnay is in London for us tonight. The issue, Diana, we've heard all this before, creative solutions for a special partnership,
deep and special partnership. We don't want the EEA. We don't want this or that. But new is there? She keeps sang the same things.
DIANA MAGNAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, there is a little bit more flesh on the bones in relation to the substance of the negotiations on say, those
three key issues, EU citizens' rights, divorce bill, the Irish border. She add, a bit of detail there. She added a bit of detail on the role of the
ECJ and new EU regulation in an implementation phase. That sort of pacified the Brexiteer lobby, Jacob Rees-Moqq, Boris Johnson. I think
they're the most important thing about what she said today was that she really gave her most definitive expression to date of what no deal might
look like. And the fact that the British government is putting plans in place for a no deal scenario.
And in that vein, the Department for International Trade also published two white papers today, which were on customs and trade. Which spelled out
also, what who could happen in the event of no deal scenario. I think she has said very often, no deal is better than a bad deal. But this was I
suppose also a mark in the stand to Brussels, saying, we're getting ready for this and this is where we are leave it and the real thrust of that
speech was, you know, the ball is in your court, EU.
QUEST: OK. Now, on that question though. It's unlikely the Europeans, this set of talks will authorize going to the second stage of discussion
which include the future trade relationships. When is the best thinking that that might take place?
MAGNAY: Theresa May said today, if it happened in the next month doesn't mean we can't get a good deal. She said that Brussels was showing a bit
more movement on their side of things. We're six months into these talks and to these negotiations. They really haven't got very far. But there is
still 18 months to go. That said, if you listen to Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the opposition in parliament today, this was a gift for him.
It's very easy for Labour to sit there and criticize the Tories, they don't actually have a very, very coherent Brexit stance themselves. But I think
is worth taking a listen to what he said in response to Theresa May's speech today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JEREMY CORBYN, LEADER, BRITISH LABOUR PARTY: Fifteen months on from the referendum. We're still no clearer what the future of this country will
look like. The question must be asked, what on earth has the government been doing all this time?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
[16:05:04] MAGNAY: That is a question that I think large parts of the population are also asking and Theresa May didn't really give any answers
to it necessarily today. Just a suggestion that progress is being made, Brexit is full of these cliches, but the clock is ticking, as Jeremy Corbyn
says. And I think one of the real reasons that Theresa May is still clinging onto power is because she's in such an enviable position that no
one else within the Tory party really wants to be navigating these negotiations that she is right now.
QUEST: Diana Magnay, thank you for staying late tonight in London and talking to us. Appreciate it.
The fifth round of talks, that Diana was talking about, are under way in Brussels. And it is the U.K. against 27 EU nations, one against 27. The
Prime Minister says it's up to the European leaders to make their play.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
May: A new deep and separate partnership between a sovereign United Kingdom and a strong and successful European Union is our ambition and our
offer to our European friends. Achieving that partnership will require leadership and flexibility. Not just from us, but from our friends the 27
nations of the EU. And as we look forward to the next stage, the ball is in their court.
QUEST: The ball is in their court. That is Theresa May's first serve. She says the U.K. has played its part, now it's up to the Europeans to move
on. And she said was optimistic about a positive response from the Europeans. Optimistic, why should she be optimistic? The Europeans lobbed
the ball back straightaway saying, it's not how the way the game works. The Europeans say the first set of divorce talks is not complete yet. And
therefore, it's back to you with where the ball is.
Oh, no, the ball has come back across the net once again. Only because Mrs. May says the U.K. needs a unique partnership with the EU. The final
score won't be determined until the end of the negotiating period and there may need to be extra time for Britain to adjust. And put another way, back
to you, Mrs. May, says the Europeans. Overall, when all is said and done, that's not going to be the way it'll happen. Because the EU can literally
just bombard the British one after the other with more and more requirements and demands.
Let's put all this together as to what it actually means. Bernard Jenkin is member of Parliament. He campaigned for Britain to leave the EU. He
joined me a short while age from London. He said there's no reason the EU can't get a good trade deal after all.
BERNARD JENKIN, BRITISH MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT, CONSERVATIVE PARTY: We want a Canada style relationship with the European Union. But we should be able
to get a much better trade deal than with Canada, because on day one of Brexit, we have identical regulatory systems to the European Union.
There's no disagreement about what a car is, what a ball bearing, what a bit of lamb is. It all conforms with U.K. standards, so we should be able
to do a very good free trade deal.
QUEST: A free trade deal, yes, but do except that the ultimate relationship between the U.K. and EU must by definition be inferior when it
comes to trade to that enjoyed by members of the single market. Otherwise there's no point in being a member of the EU?
JENKIN: I think you just made the point that the EU wants to make, which is that they want to punish us for leaving the EU. But I don't remember in
the free trade deal that Canada got with the EU, for example, there was any question of Canada paying into the EU budget or agreeing to the free moment
of people or accepting the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice. So, within the spectrum of free trade deals, we should be able to do a
very, very good free trade deal with the EU without having to submit to any of their laws or pay them any money.
QUEST: The issue of the two-part negotiation or the second phase, the first phase. Whichever way you want to describe it. The U.K. did sort of
sign up for that when it went into the Article 50 negotiations. The U.K. knew that the EU was negotiating on the basis that there had to be
sufficient progress in those areas and it. And it would not be up to the U.K. to determine the definition of sufficient progress.
JENKIN: Well, I think it was just underling how unreasonable the EU can be. We have made progress on all those areas. We have complied with their
requests. We've accepted the order of these negotiations in order to try and conciliate with them and make it easy for them.
[16:10:04] But the more compliant we are with their wishes, the more demands they seem to make. And I think that the Prime Minister was
absolutely right today to say is actually we've done enough the ball is now in their court. And secondly, we are going to be more publicly preparing
for the possibility that there will be no deal. Because ultimately if we leave without a deal, we need to be ready and it's worth spending a small
fraction of the sums that we would be spending on propping the EU budget in an interim period on being ready for no deal. That will at least
strengthen our hands in the negotiations.
QUEST: Th other big story to bring to you tonight of uncertainty comes again from Europe, where the French government says it will not recognize
an independent Catalonia. The French minister for European Affairs said a Catalan state would automatically find itself outside of the European
Union. Hundreds of thousands of people rallied in Barcelona over the weekend calling for Catalonia to stay in Spain. There are likely to get
their answer on Tuesday when the Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont, address the regional parliament. CNN's Nic Robertson is in Barcelona for
us tonight. Nic, we've waited for days, post referendum, for the potential declaration of independence. Is it your understanding it sooner now rather
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: You know, Richard, there's people here that have been waiting for independence for Catalonia
for decades now. Less than 24 hours from Carles Puigdemont making his statement on what should happen. One of the coalition partners, the left-
wing independence seeking Cup Party have said, look, essentially, we had the referend referendum. We've got the voice of the people. Let's
essentially not squander that by getting into some far never ending political talks. Let's move ahead. Let's declare independence. The
Socialist Party here have come out and said don't do that. Don't declare independence. That's not the right way forward. The mayor of Barcelona
has spoken this evening, and appealed to both sides in this to sort of back away from a confrontation, to try to find dialogue, this is what she said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ADA COLAU, BARCELONA MAYOR (through translator): What we need now are gestures toward dialogue and not escalating facts because it will not
benefit anyone. Now we need to build bridges not destroy them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERTSON: And in trying to build bridges, she's called on the Prime Minister of Spain, Prime Minister, Rajoy, not to invoke what's called
Article 155 here, powers that would allow him if he so choose to have Puigdemont arrested if he called for independence -- Richard.
QUEST: The role of the banks, two of the banks have moved out and the rules have been changed to allow companies to move their headquarters from
Catalan to other parts. How much affect does the potential commercial disaster -- some would say -- of the companies moving out, moving their
headquarters from Barcelona or from Catalan? Is this plane into the debate?
ROBERTSON: Hugely, and it depends which side of the debate you're on how you interpret this. There were those that are pushing for independence
that see moves like this as being encouraged quietly by the central government in Madrid to be sort of a warning, you know, these are the
stakes, don't do it. You'll lose money. A large part of the economy here in Barcelona, at least in the Catalan region, largely depends on finance.
So, a couple of the banks here moving their legal headquarters out of the region a very strong signal. And some people say this is sign of that
things, the economy here could be hurt by this, we should not do it.
But as I say again, it depend on which side of the argument you're on. As we have heard on these types of debates throughout Europe. If you stick to
your beliefs and if it doesn't suit what you see then you interpret it as being a scheme against your position. That is again the divisive nature of
where things stand today.
QUEST: Possibly an impossible question for you to answer. But I would like to hear your thoughts. We know in the referendum only 42 percent of
the potential electorate voted and 90 percent of them voted secession. We know that there was 1/4 of a million on the streets yesterday. Nic, what
is the general view if you were to take the total electorate in Catalan, in favor or against independence, what's the real number if they'd all voted
in favor, do we believe?
[16:15:00] ROBERTSON: The most recent polling, and again it's polling and we know how unreliable polls can be, but the most recent polling here
indicates that Catalans before the referendum last week, I have to say, and that been divisive. Because of the way the Prime Minister responded to it.
By putting police out. More than 800 people injured and some of them pulled bodily out of polling stations. Before that moment, the majority
here would have voted for unity, would have voted against independence. That's the understanding. The figure today might be different. It's not
clear. So, you have those pushing for independence say, let's take what we've got and let's move ahead with that. And no one is quite clear where
we stand today. But until last week it would have been no to independence.
QUEST: Nic, thank you for that. I appreciate it. Barcelona, a wonderful city. Thank you.
QUEST: European stocks closed mostly higher. Interestingly, depending on what we just hearing, Spanish stocks were up. CaixaBank and Banco Sabadell
rose after moving legal address. The Dax, look at that, the Dax has hit a new record. We'll try and get that to you. Sterling rebounded pushing
down British stocks. Obviously, they go adversely effected if the pound is stronger.
Diplomatic relations between the United States and Turkey are at a new low. Travelers have both countries are getting caught up in a nasty dispute.
We'll have the latest from Washington in just a moment. This is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.
QUEST: A diplomatic standoff between the United States and Turkey has rattled investors in Istanbul. The Turkish lira fell as much as 6.5
percent. The stock market was off 3 percent. And shares in Turkish Airlines fell 9 percent. Late on Sunday -- this is what it's all about.
Late on Sunday, the U.S. Embassy in Ankara announced it would stop processing visitor visas for Turkish citizens. Turkey responded imposing
travel restrictions on U.S. A classic tit for tat. Now the Turkish President said he saddened by the U.S. to suspend visas. CNN's global
affairs correspondent, Elise Labott joins from Washington. To anyone of who had a weekend where we were enjoying the weather, might have sort of
not have paid too much attention to this. Just remind us briefly, why did the U.S. say they were stopping issuing visas in the place?
ELISE LABOTT, CNN GLOBAL AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT: OK, well, last week, one of the staff members of the U.S. Consulate in Ankara, was arrested. There
was no charges given, they were not given any reason and the U.S. Ambassador to Turkey, John Bass, said that this person did not have
adequate access to his attorney. They haven't given any reason for the charges. And essentially what seems to be happening, Richard, is that the
Turkish government is saying that this person, this staff member at the U.S. Consulate, a local Turkish citizen, is linked to the Fethullah Gulen
movement, which as you know, the Turkish government blames for the attempted coup, the failed coup attempt last year.
[16:20:14] So, this is the second time this year that a U.S. staff member at the Consulate has been arrested. The Turkish prosecutor also says that
there are also looking for a third person. The Turkish government seems to be charging that these people are linked to the Gulen movement. And so,
the U.S. is saying, listen, we're going to suspend these services while we reconsider whether the Turkish government is committed to the safety and
security of our personnel.
QUEST: OK. Is the feeling in Washington that this is a dramatic overreaction by both the U.S. in terms of starting to -- I mean obviously,
the U.S. fired the first salvo by stopping processing visas? If the tit for tat from the Turkish side. Do diplomats think this is an overreaction
from one or either side, or both?
LABOTT: I think that this is the second person this year. I mean, you would think it would be a lot more before they would start to take an
action such as this. But Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, has made the safety insecurity of U.S. personnel. Whether there U.S. citizens or
locally based staff, a priority for him. And this is to send a message to the Turkish government that this won't stand. I think the Turkish -- they
think that this is certainly a Turkish tit for tat. I think they'll probably be able to sort it out. But I think it's a wider concern about
the Turkish government rounding up all these people that they say are linked to the Gulen movement. And the U.S. had enough problems with the
fact that they were overreaching in their detentions of journalists, of government officials, of citizens. But when they start to mess with U.S.
employees I think that's where they draw the line.
QUEST: Elise Labott, thank you. Good to see you, thank you, from Washington.
The U.S. markets ended today lower, adding to Friday's losses. I mean, let's not get too excited. The Dow was off 12 points, barely less than .01
percent. Trading volumes were extremely thin. The bond market was shut. It was Columbus Day. Although it's a bank holiday and the bond market's
closed, there was trading on the stock market. But you do find it to be a very quiet day on those circumstances.
The governor of Puerto Rico is asking U.S. Congress for an additional $4 billion in emergency aid as the territory struggles to recover from Maria.
In a three-page letter to lawmakers, Ricardo Rossello, says the island is on the brink of a massive liquidity crisis. And he told CNN news he's
demanding action as a matter of urgency.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RICARDO ROSSELLO, PUERTO RICO GOVERNOR: I have the responsibility to make sure that results get to the people of Puerto Rico. Not only in the
immediate term, but also in the mid and long-term. And that's why we're making a plea to Congress to act quickly on an immediate relief package two
Puerto Rico so that we can get what we've estimated as $4.6 billion of immediate relief.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
QUEST: OK, Phil Mattingly is with me from Capitol Hill. Let's deal with the immediate, and if you like, the urgent. Congress has appropriated 20
odd billion last week. There was a move to appropriate more. I assume congress will appropriate this money for Puerto Rico, will they?
PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN U.S. CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's still an open question. What congress is waiting for right now, is the White House to
request actually that extra $4.6 billion the governor was talking about just then. And I can tell you, behind the scenes, Richard, the governor
has been making phone calls to both Republican and Democratic leaders. Really trying to light a fire under them to push for urgency at the White
House. What's going on at the White House right now, sources tell me, is they're in the minutes of a long-term review of Puerto Rico's finances.
There is a general acknowledgment that they're going to have to send a lot more money the islands way. But the question is when.
The Treasury Department is saying perhaps they don't need to move as quickly as the government is saying they do. What I can tell you is based
on the last 48 hours, lawmakers on Capitol Hill recognize the urgency. And lawmakers on Capitol Hill are waiting for the White House to send that new
request for money that they would add into that supplemental funding request, you are talking about, at some point over the next couple of days.
But as of yet that request hasn't come. And that's precisely why you have seen the Puerto Rican governor and top officials involved with the island
really kind of pressing Washington right now, saying we don't have kind of the luxury to wait, we need this in the near term.
QUEST: And where does Congress stand on this rather squalid tit for tat between the mayor of San Juan and Donald Trump. Or indeed, just Donald
Trump's recent tweets about the Puerto Rican people won't -- don't help themselves. And throwing Bounty toilet papers and towels and those sorts
of things. Is Congress basically trying to stay out of it?
MATTINGLY: No question about it. And I think you can probably apply that to most tweets the from the president over the course of the last eight or
nine months. They recognize that is not helpful to the process. It's not helpful to what they're trying to do.
[16:25:00] Richard, you can see lawmakers when they've been -- during the weekends, when they've been on recess. They've been making trips down to
Puerto. They've been going on their own fact-finding missions. They recognize help is needed. Whether or not the president's trying to help
them in that process or whether he is kind of public exclamations help them in that process. They don't want to deal with right now. What they want
from the White House is a supplemental funding request. Everything outside that, I think if you talk to law makers who are making these decisions,
Richard, it's just noise.
QUEST: OK, I'm off reservation, Phil. Was there a sharp intake of breath on Capitol Hill with the tweet from Cory Booker about -- calling the White
House an adult daycare center -- Corker, sorry, Corker -- calling it adult daycare center where somebody clearly missed their ship. Was everybody
MATTINGLY: There was a little bit of that, and maybe a little bit more of people furiously texting back and forth to one another. Can you believe
this? Did you just see this? Look behind the scenes I can tell you from my own conversations. What senator Corker was talking about, maybe not on
that tweet specifically, but in in that very lengthy "New York Times" interview, wasn't something that his colleagues haven't said in private, or
in candid moments in the past. He was just willing to go on the record about it. They're now is a very difficult situation where, again, they
have tried to tread very carefully, on ignoring the tweets, trying to continue to move forward on the policy agenda that they have.
They recognize that they control the House and the Senate the White House. That's not necessarily a normal thing for Republicans. And this is their
opportunity to move those policies forward. The Problem becomes when you have a Republican Senator, and a very powerful one, the chairman of the
Foreign Relations Committee, coming out and saying things like this. You can't ignore it anymore. Every Senator is going to have to answer
questions about Bob Corker and the president for the next couple of weeks. And that is one thing for sure, not a discussion about tax reform, which is
where Republican leaders would really like to be right now. But this is something they've gotten used to over the last nine months. The ability to
be laser focused on anything agenda related never last more than 15 or 16 hours -- Richard.
QUEST: That long. Good to see you, Phil Mattingly. Good to see you on Capitol Hill. It was of course Bob Corker. My mistake.
Now interestingly, the point that Phil Mattingly was talking about, people saying behind the scenes are only now talking openly about a situation. It
is very much a similar position that we're seeing in Hollywood and in Los Angeles in the entertainment industry. The Harvey Weinstein scandal has
rocked the entertainment industry. Tonight, the actress, Meryl Streep is speaking out about allegations that the filmmaker sexually harassed women.
And the real issue is now become everybody or a large number of people seem to have known this for a long time. And only now is anybody saying, oh
yes, we knew about that.
[16:30:02] QUEST: Hello, I'm Richard Quest, there's a lot more QUEST MEANS BUSINESS in just a moment. When Meryl Streep breaks her silence over the
revelations concerning Harvey Weinstein. Will have that story for you.
An Richard Thayer the author of "Nudge" wins the Nobel Prize for economics. I'll speak to the man who wrote the book with him.
You're watching CNN and on this network the news always comes first.
The Turkish Foreign Minister has summoned the U.S. Embassy deputy chief in an escalating diplomatic rift between the countries. The row started last
weekend after the arrest of a staff member from the U.S. consulate in Istanbul. Washington responded to the arrest on Sunday by freezing visa
services at the Turkish Embassies and consulates. Turkey in a tit for tat move did the same for U.S. missions hours later.
Barcelona's mayor is calling on the Spanish prime minister to de-escalate tensions with Catalan as divisions deepen for Catalonia's push for
independence. Pressure grows on the Catalan leader to put off declaring independence. The head of the region's foreign affairs says Catalonia is
willing to listen to an offer from Madrid.
In North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has promoted his younger sister to a top post. According to state media the move was made during the weekend at a
key meeting of the country's ruling party. Kim Yo-jong has been selected as an alternate member of the political bureau, which is the regimes top
The first lady Melania Trump is hitting back at present Trump's first wife, Ivana Trump who he divorced 25 years ago. Ivana referred to herself as
first lady. The former Mrs. Trump made the comment while promoting her new book. The current Mrs. Trump responded through her communications director
saying, she's honored to be first lady and will use her title to help children, not sell books.
After a week of allegations of sexual harassment Harvey Weinstein went into the weekend hoping to reform himself and return to work. He had the help
of a high-profile attorney, Lisa Bloom. We had her on this program. By Sunday, Lisa Bloom had quit, and Weinstein had been fired by the board of
the company that he founded. Brian Stelter is here. Brian, why did they fire him? What did they learn that we didn't know?
BRIAN STELTER, CNNMONEY SENIOR MEDIA CORRESPONDENT: There were more stories in the work. Not all of them have come out yet publicly. But even
over the weekend, there were women that were coming forward for the first time after the "New York Times" expose had come out, saying this happened
to me too. There were both those reasons and also just plain old business reasons. There were clients of the Weinstein Company that did not want to
be associated with Harvey anymore. People that were saying, I'm not going to do that movie. I'm not going to write that book if he still in the
company. So, it was a calculation by the Weinstein Company about what was best for its future. This was an ongoing all weekend lo among the board.
Of course, those are the board members that haven't quit yet.
QUEST: Why did they quit?
STELTER: About four of them have quit because they didn't want to be in the position of basically firing the founder of the company. So, now we're
down to --
QUEST: Yes, but did they pusillanimous weak and refusing to do it. Are they the sort of people that might have known what was going on and chose
to look the other way?
STELTER: This is an all-male board of Harvey Weinstein's friends, longtime friends. I don't have an answer to what they knew and what they didn't do.
But I have a lot of questions about that and so do a lot of other reporters. That's the next front of the story.
QUEST: Dame Judy Dench, whilst there is no doubt that Harvey Weinstein has helped and championed my film career, I was completely unaware of these
offenses. And it's horrifying.
And director Kevin Smith, he financed the first 14 years of my career and now I know while I was profiting others were in terrible pain. It makes me
I understand they're sincere. But a lot of people in Hollywood at least knew that if you're a woman being alone with Harvey Weinstein was not a
STELTER: I think it might be one those situations, Richard, where you just don't want to look too hard. Look too carefully. Look too deep. So, some
folks look the other way. Some folks pretended not to know. And I think in many cases the women that experienced harassment at the hands of
Weinstein felt if they spoke up they wouldn't be believed. If they spoke up it would hurt their careers.
QUEST: Melania Trump, and the book of Ivan Trump. What on earth do we make of this?
STELTER: This is the "Real Housewives of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue." And it's exactly what Andy Cohen and others predicted. You know, Andy Cohen is
now of course, is the Bravo guy that oversees the shows. He is suggesting he hold a real housewives type summit to bring the Trump women together.
Obviously, that's not going happen.
[16:35:00] But this does feel like a reality TV show. And you know, Ivana Trump is just starting a book tour. She's going to be outselling this new
book. She wrote about her kids. So, she's going to continue to weigh in about Melania I'm sure. She'll respond to Melania. Gosh, Richard, given
the distressing and disturbing news about the Trump administration, maybe it's good to have a little reality TV drama.
QUEST: All right, reality TV from the Trump women. Reality TV about the comments with the Senators.
STELTER: With Corker, yes.
QUEST: Brian, where doe this go?
STELTER: This is about the fitness, or the unfitness of the President of the United States. There is no bigger story right now, Richard, than
weather President Trump is stable and fit to hold office. And Corker is circling around that question. And he says a lot of his Republican
colleagues are circling around the same question, but so far today, a Iot of silence. Almost nobody willing to stand with Corker and say publicly
that they agree with him. At least on the Republican Senators side. Good to see you.
QUEST: Good to see you, sir. Thank you so much.
QUEST: HBO's chief executive says he isn't worried about rivals spending billions of dollars more on content. Telling CNN more is not better. Now
HBO is owned by Time-Warner parent company of this network. CNN's Dylan Byers sat down with Richard Plepler in Los Angeles.
DYLAN BYERS: CNN SENIOR MEDIA REPORTER: Dylan Byers in Hollywood, I want to start by asking you about the future of television. Let's go ten years
from now. When I want to have access to whatever the next Game of Thrones is, but I also want to be sure I'm watching Golden State Warriors games and
I want to make sure I'm getting my news. How am I consuming that information?
RICHARD PLEPLER, CEO, HBO: I wish I was smart enough to understand what Everything is going to look like ten years from now, but let me take a
crack at what I think two givens are. Number one, quality in whatever area you as a content provider are in. The game and the stakes are going to be
higher than ever and number two, brands will matter more than ever. People are going to gravitate towards those brands that they trust and they
deliver on the implicit promise that those brands make.
So, if you're coming to a brand because, you think it' t best sports programming, you got to deliver the best sports programming and you got to
have a multifaceted way of getting to your consumer. Through cable, satellite, telco, OTT, you have to deliver all kinds of optionality to the
consumer and you have to present superb quality, you have to deliver on your promise.
BYERS: If I'm running away from the cable bundle how do you view the landscape where you also have Netflix, Hulu, people are also going to need
some sort of news package, some sort of sports package?
PLEPLER: First of all, remember we have always been a la carte whole lives. The reason that we are successful and continue to be successful is
what I said earlier, people associating our brand with excellent content. That is our job. If we don't continue to make great stuff, that the
consumer wants to see, you're absolutely right, there are many other places to go.
BYERS: Ted Sarandos, chief content officer at Netflix, just an aside here, the Vanity Fair establishment, someone says we got $6 billion for content,
we got $7 billion next. Amazon reportedly over $4.5 billion. Apple is getting into the game. You know that all these players are in the game.
How do you make sure that you keep a hold of what you have and you continue to get what's exciting and what's coming next?
PLEPLER: Let's be clear. You have to continue to invest in the best content and we will never be caught saying no to what we want to say yes
to. And that we continue to make sure that our culture is a place where talent can thrive.
BYERS: Do you need 6 billion or 7 billion, do you need Netflix money? Do you need Amazon money?
PLEPLER: More is not better, only better is better.
QUEST: More is not better, only better is better.
If you missed part of today's program, or if you want to take us with you on the road, it's available on podcast on all the major providers. You can
listen at ccn.com/podcast.
So called Dreamers entered the United States as undocumented immigrants now they're a key part of the economy, with new principles from the White House
that are threatening to derail efforts to protect them.
[16:40:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
QUEST: U.S. Democratic leaders are saying that the President Trump's hardline immigration proposals are not serious, the White House is
requesting money for the president's border wall and new measures to cut legal immigration. Those demands threaten to derail demands to protect
undocumented young immigrants, the so-called Dreamers. And Democrats say they have become an integral part of the economy. As CNN's Vanessa
MUSTAFA GONIM: We're not taking jobs, we're just competing for them.
DANIELLA VELEZ: You can have my job if you can do it.
VANESSA YURKEVICH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Mustafa Gonim And Daniella Velez here in the U.S. through no fault of their own.
Our backgrounds set us up to have that fight in us.
VELEZ: The business needs me to help it bring growth, to help it bring diversity.
YURKEVICH: Brought to the U.S. illegally by their parents.
GONIM: You want to be able to pour it back into our families, pour it back into our communities.
VELEZ: If you can't do my job than one job and I stealing from you?
YURKEVICH: Now as the fate of DACA hangs in the balance their futures do also.
VELEZ: I was about 9 years old when my parents decided to come to America and we get on the plane and all I remember was me saying thank you to the
hostess, that's all I know. And I remember my mother sitting down and saying we're not going back.
GONIM: I was born in Egypt, and we migrated to the states when I was 7 years old.
YURKEVICH: More than 5 percent of DACA residents have started businesses, that's more than double the overall U.S. rate.
Mustafa started an event staffing company little over a year ago, that employs nearly 30 people.
Are the people of DACA are taking American jobs?
GONIM: I grew up playing baseball, and baseball for whatever you wanted, you were given a shot to earn what you want, the best man wins, it's not
that we're taking any jobs, we are competing we are creating jobs in the process,
YURKEVICH: Daniella work a 9 to 5, and has started her own business on the side. It is called innovative lab designs. And let students who can't
make it to classes at school take them online.
VELEZ: Students will buy the kids and take physics lab at home.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We don't know if Daniella is going to be here in two years. What would it mean if she had to one-day leave?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: if you look around the country and other two-year schools, four-year schools, they're not doing this probably because they
don't have a Daniella.
GONIM: The relationship with my father has been very special to me, one day he had a massive heart attack and passed away.
YURKEVICH: do you think that a lot why you are pursuing the American dream is for him?
GONIM: Yes. And my mom. I guess through this business, I was able to retire her, as you say. I don't do things for me, it's not so much for
myself, my thing is being able to accomplish something and bring it back for my family, by community.
DANIELLA: Part of me says, yes, I want to stay here. But then another part of me, it's like how can we go back living in the shadows when we had
a taste of what it is to be in the light?
QUEST: Still ahead, from the big short to the Nobel Prize, after decades of work that was sometimes called controversial, Richard Thaler has one the
most prestigious award in economics. We will talk to his closest colleagues next.
[16:45:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
RICHARD THALER, NOBEL ECONOMICS PRIZE WINNER: I've been at this for 40 years, it was really out in the wilderness 40 years ago. So, it's been a
long journey. I'm happy about.
QUEST: From the wilderness to the economic mainstream, Richard Thaler is a behavioral scientist who has just won the Nobel Prize for economics. His
life's work is to get people to make better decisions and that includes better investment decisions. It's the nudge theory.
For instance, instead of telling men to take better aim at the urinal, paint in a fake housefly and nudge them into doing exactly that.
Governments have been nudging us to make better decisions for years. In Copenhagen for example, green footsteps lead to trash bins nudging us not
Thaler's ideas one a wide audience in the 2015 movie "The Big Short", it was a cameo appearance with Selena Gomez explain why investors make
irrational decisions and how to avoid them.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
Selena Gomez, actor, "The Big Short": My odds are good, I am on a winning streak, everybody in this place wants to get in on the action. How could I
THALER: Now this is a classic error, in basketball it's called the hot hand fallacy, a player makes a bunch of shots in a row, people are sure
they are going to make the next one. People think whatever is happening now is going to continue to happen.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
QUEST: Joining me now, Cass Sunstein who cowrote "Nudge" with Dr. Thaler. He joins us from Cambridge, Massachusetts. And David Halpern, the chief
executive of the so-called nudge unit, which is UK behavioral insights which applies David's work. Who joins us from Cambridge in the UK.
Start with you Cass Sunstein, first of all, obviously many congratulations to you cowriter for this. And I read your article that you wrote this
morning on Bloomberg about how you came to work with Thaler. When did you realize that this was an economic theory that had real live daily practical
benefits that we could all use?
CASS SUNSTEIN, CO-AUTHOR, 'NUDGE": I think he had me basically at hello. As soon as I read his work, I had seen in the first paragraphs an approach
that could actually affect law and public policy. So, his own views are originally about how people actually behave, and how that affects economic
[16:50:00] But it's a little like a lightning bolt if you are thinking about public policy and law. And for the first time I think with his work
you could see, well maybe, if we want to encourage people to engage in behavior that will lengthen their lives, health and economically, avoid
some terrible misfortunes. This provides us some clues.
QUEST: David Halpern, the nudge unit, formally the behavioral insights team, when you have been involved in this, are you aware of its background?
Obviously, you are because people have told you, but can you see the direct lineage from Thaler's work to the work that you do?
DAVID HALPERN, CHIEF EXECUTIVE, BEHAVIORAL INSIGHTS TEAM: Very much, I should say, Richard himself, Richard especially has worked with us very
closely from the outset indeed, we reach out to Richard immediately after the election, even before to help set up a team. I say by the way I first
came across it 15 years ago, I was a psychologist, when we had something called a prime minister strategy. And we had Danny Kahneman himself went
on to get a Nobel Prize, I remember asking him, what have you seen recently that is particularly interesting work? And he actually refers specifically
to a paper written by Richard.
And as soon as we read it, it was immediately obvious, this was very, very powerful material for us.
QUEST: Cass, I'm reading what you say, more than anyone I know, Richard Thaler's academic interests are a direct outgrowth of his personality.
He's full of mischief and a ton of fun. We don't tend to think of that about too many economic professors.
SUNSTEIN: It's true, there's no one else who would notice at a dinner party, that his guests are eating a lot of cashew nuts before dinner, and
they are happy when the guest takes the cashew nuts away. In the recent they are happy is they want to save space for dinner. No other economist
would say, there is a lesson there. Human beings have a problem with self- control. And when someone solves the problem of self-control, they are happy, even if it takes away an option.
And that has big implications if we are thinking about obesity, smoking, saving for retirement. If we are thinking about getting out of the trap of
poverty. And so Thaler, it is like he can see in a grain of sand or whole world. And that actually gave rise to a whole theory which certainly
affected some of the things that the U.S. government has done.
QUEST: David, what did you do to take this theory, this idea of take away options or indeed the way in which human behavioral activity relates to
economics? What did you do to give it force and life?
HALPERN: Well, we basically said about applying across the whole range of areas. The most famous one was on both sides of the Atlantic, it has been
pensions. As for literally decades governments have poured billions and billions in tax subsidies to encourage people to save. But Richard's work
suggests there might be something else going on here. It is a bit of a hassle to opt into a system.
So, from 2012, we flipped our system so it became an opt out instead of an opt in, in immediately you get no more than nine in 10 people saving. So,
it's a huge impact on large numbers of people.
QUEST: Cass, when these ideas come about, when these unique genius concepts formulate, what it is that like in that sense? I was watching the
movie "A Beautiful Mind" recently about John Nash, is there a eureka moment, where you say, ah, now I see and I can develop the theory further.
SUNSTEIN: I think so. I think Thaler is the closest thing to a Charles Dickens of economics, in the sense that his eureka moments come from
closely observing what people are actually like. and his basic guidance for the rest of us really is look closely. And sometimes if you look you
will see something which will jar either the prevailing wisdom, or which will jar some theory that people in positions of authority using. And
often I think in Thaler's work he has had about 12 eureka moments. When is a cashew nuts moment, another is that if people are automatically enrolled
in something as David said, the participation rate is going to skyrocket compared to if they have opt in. And that is a very simple insight, it
bears not only on savings policy but also in relief of poverty. And even on environmental problems.
QUEST: Thank you so much, putting real life to us from the Nobel economics.
[16:55:00] Today the markets traded, it was up and then it was down, it was up and down, and with finally down. Not off the lows of the day, well off
the lows of the day, but still down. But as my producer reminding me, Richard, do not get excited by the fact that it was down just 12 points.
It's less than 1/10 of 1 percent.
The Nasdaq also closed down and that marks the end of the nine-day winning streak for that index where it is constantly set record highs. Trading
volume was thin, bond market shut for Columbus Day holiday. Put it all together, that is the market, we will have a Profitable Moment after the
QUEST: Tonight's Profitable Moment, put it like this, it was always going to be difficult with the whole question of Brexit. An hour being told that
the ball is in your court. Oh, no. The ball is in your court. Oh no, the ball is in your court.
It was inevitable that this was going to happen. A, because the ball is not physical, it's concept. More importantly, there's so much at stake.
The very construct of these negotiations that are of two phases where you can't get to the second phase until you finish the first phase. In the
difficulty of the issue in the first place, the divorce bill, Northern Ireland, all these tricky, complex issues, obviously, it was always going
to be. No, you are not good enough. Yes, we have done enough. No, you we have done enough. And so forth.
The reality of course is we will never really know whether they have done enough because this is still got many more months to go. Ultimately,
whoever caught the ball is in, well, we've got 18 months of this sort of stuff. I promise you it was inevitable, don't get panicked at this stage.
Where is the ball?
And that is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS for the night. I am Richard Quest in New York. Whatever you are up to in the hours ahead, I hope it is profitable.
Anyone for tennis? See you tomorrow.