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FAREED ZAKARIA GPS
Admiral William McRaven Discusses His Career; Theresa May's Resignation Examined; David Brooks Talks about His New Book. Aired 10- 11a ET
Aired May 26, 2019 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[10:00:24] FAREED ZAKARIA, CNN HOST: This is GPS, the GLOBAL PUBLIC SQUARE. Welcome to all of you in the United States and around the world.
ZAKARIA: Today on the show, Trump's trip to the Far East. The president is in Japan as fears grow over North Korean missiles. And both sides dig in on the U.S.-China trade war. What is next for America's Asian relations?
Also, Iran threatens the U.S. The U.S. threatens Iran. There is much rhetoric and bravado, but will it turn to actual hostility, real violence?
I will talk to Admiral William McRaven, the man most famous for commanding the team that got to Osama bin Laden.
And whom do Americans want for their next president? A devout for Catholic, a Jew, an atheist, a woman, a gay or lesbian candidate, a septuagenarian, or a socialist. I will tell you the fascinating results of a poll.
ZAKARIA: But first here's my take. Many of us have been waiting for a new Sputnik moment, the point at which the challenge from China spurs America to get its act together. We may now be witnessing such a watershed, but in Beijing.
The Trump administration's decision to blacklist Huawei, the world's seventh largest technology company, might well be China's Sputnik moment with seismic consequences. Now that it is on the American blacklist, Huawei will like lose key hardware and software that it relies on for its cell phones and associated technology. This move can only be interpreted as an attempt by the Trump administration to kill the company, already the world's second largest maker of smartphones.
The Chinese will see this as a turning point. If Washington can cut China off from American technology at will, China will be determined to build its own technological infrastructure top to bottom.
We might be moving toward a bipolar world in digital technology with two walled off ecosystems, American and Chinese. This division would erode the deep levels of interdependence and the cross border investments and supply chains that characterize today's global economy.
Before traveling down this road, the United States should ensure that it has the smartest strategy in place to deal with the real challenge from China. First, the Trump administration should make clear the broad principles it is defending in punishing Huawei. It has so far been reluctant to outline the evidence, perhaps because it is classified, but it must help the world understand that it is not simply blocking a successful foreign competitor. It is acting to preserve the security of networks and the privacy of individuals.
Second, the United States should have built an international coalition to confront Beijing. From the start I have supported the Trump's administration tough stance on China, but I am bewildered as to why they are going solo rather than forging a broad alliance.
Third, we should think through what this bipolar world would look like. China's technology will be cheaper because of its lower labor costs, looser regulations and government assistance. Huawei is already dominant in the developing world. Many developing countries might keep opting for the cheaper technology. In their view, whatever technology they choose comes with the risk that a government, China or America, will snoop on them.
Fourth, is there another smarter way to take on China? A senior technology executive I spoke with suggested that the better response would be for America to become the world's leader in encryption and countering cyber espionage. He suggested that a university like MIT be tasked with using only Huawei products to build a system that is still encrypted end to end and shields all data from Huawei.
Finally, isn't the real answer to China's extraordinary gains and technology to make the U.S. policy changes and investments that allow America to compete with Beijing? It's difficult to imagine that Washington would be able to shut down the economic rise and innovations of a dynamic country of 1.4 billion people that already boasts many of the globe's top technology companies.
[10:05:08] Instead, we need our own Sputnik moment, focusing the country to outcompete China. Understand this technology strategy we are embarking on is far more consequential than trade talks. On trade, the Trump administration has many legitimate complaints about Chinese behavior. It is playing hardball. But the end goal is to create more economic interdependence between the two countries.
After all, if there is a deal, China will buy more American goods, invest more in America and provide more market access to American companies. But technology war would take us in a very different direction. It would lead not to a Cold War but a cold peace with a divided and less prosperous world.
For more go to CNN.com/fareed and read my "Washington Post" column this week. And let's get started. With the president in Japan, I thought it was a perfect time to talk
about America's relations in Asia. After all, despite relatively good relations with Japan, there is a trade war, so it is going on between the United States and China. And the last nuclear Trump-Kim summit ended abruptly.
So what is the overall state of play in the Far East?
Joining me now are Evan Medeiros who was President Obama's top adviser on Asia. He is the Penner chair in Asian Studies at Georgetown. Anna Fifield is the Beijing bureau chief for the "Washington Post" and the author of a forthcoming book about Kim Jong-un called "The Great Successor." And Parag Khanna is a smart analyst on all things Asia. His new book is "The Future is Asian."
Anna, let me start with you there in Beijing. What is the Chinese reaction to this flurry of moves that the Trump administration has made both on trade and now on technology as well?
ANNA FIFIELD, BEIJING BUREAU CHIEF, THE WASHINGTON POST: Right. Well, the Chinese reaction has been very aggressively and stoically defiant in response of this. This week, the state-backed newspapers have all been full of calls for the Chinese people to unite against the bullying of the United States. And the Chinese propaganda units have taken a novel approach to this as well.
So just this week we have seen a lot of the programming on the main movie channel here being scrapped and instead the air waves are being filled of old movies about the Korean war, sending a message, you know, reminding people of a time when China was able to fend off America and forced it into a draw, if not a total defeat.
There's even been a pop song that has gone viral here this week called very catchly, "Trade War," which includes a line, you know, not afraid of the outrageous challenge. So the message that the government here is sending to the people and to the outside world is that they are settling in for the long haul here.
ZAKARIA: Evan, there is a specific thing that President Xi did which I was struck by. He visited a rare earth materials plant. Now rare earth is a commodity essential in the digital age and cell phones particularly, and China produces a vast majority of it.
Was that a signal that, you know, if you start blacklisting our companies like Huawei, we can start withdrawal -- you know, we can cut you off from supply chains as well?
EVAN MEDEIROS, FORMER TOP ASIA ADVISER TO PRESIDENT OBAMA: In that instance I think it was a soft signal on the part of Xi Jinping. I don't think the Chinese have decided yet whether or not to escalate. They are trying to determine exactly what Trump's intentions are after the Huawei's actions. But they want to let the U.S. know that if the U.S. continues to get tougher and is not willing to negotiate reasonably on the conditions the Chinese laid out, that they are prepared to escalate. ZAKARIA: Parag, when you look at this from the point -- from your
kind of vantage point, looking at all of Asia, what does it look like? Are we in a new cold war-cold peace? Are Asian countries feeling like they have to start lining up on the side of America or China?
PARAG KHANNA, FOUNDER AND MANAGING PARTNER, FUTUREMAP: It's a great question, Fareed. But I think it's premature to talk about a new Cold War and the bifurcation of the world, let alone Asia, along pro-U.S. or pro-Chinese lines. Remember that we're dealing with a set of countries that actually has a memory of the colonial experience and the Cold War experience, and they don't want to repeat that history. They don't want to choose sides.
There is no question that Japan, of course, is America's stalwart ally in Asia. But if you look at Southeast Asian countries, again coming out of that experience of recent decades, they want to be friends with all sides. They want to multi-align. They want good relations with China, which is their largest trading partner.
[10:10:02] They want to take lots of investment from Japan. They want to have a strong economic and military relationship with the United States as well. So it's too easy to say that there's just a new iron curtain being drawn through Asia.
ZAKARIA: Stay with us. Next on GPS, we'll come back with this great panel to talk about one specific issue, North Korea. Is there still a danger that a nuclear arm state can disrupt the peace and stability of the continent? I'll ask my panel.
ZAKARIA: And we are back with Evan Medeiros, Anna Fifield and Parag Khanna.
Evan, it looked like President Trump was certain he was going to get a deal with Kim Jong-un. He still keeps saying that he thinks that Kim Jong-un wants the best for his people. Is there any prospect of that right now? Where do things stand?
MEDEIROS: I don't think there is much prospect of a deal at all. I mean, North Korea clearly has indicated it's not interested in committing to the type of denuclearization that the U.S. needs and requires. Kim Jong-un wasn't prepared to give Trump the big deal that he thought, that Trump thought, that he was going to get, and then obviously Trump walked away in Hanoi.
[10:15:07] And the North Koreans have suggested recently through these short range missile launches that they may be inching back towards the provocation cycle. In other words doing things that the U.S. said its allies in Asia don't really like as a way to get the U.S. attention and force the U.S. back to the table.
ZAKARIA: Anna, when you look at it from Beijing, does Beijing have enough influence with North Korea to throw a monkey wrench in this, to get them to be provocative. You know, if U.S.-China relations get bad, could they turn up the pressure using North Korea, or is that relationship not as good as perhaps it once was historically?
FIFIELD: Well, the attitude here is very much that if the U.S. is not making a big deal about these short range missile launches, then China is not going to either. So there has been relatively little consternation here. I think it's viewed as a kind of classic North Korean attention seeking gambit. And in terms of what Kim Jong-un wants right now, I think that this was his attempt to focus President Trump's mind back on the peninsula. And I would disagree with Evan and say that I think that -- I mean, I definitely do not think Kim Jong-un is ever going to give up his nuclear weapons.
But I think he understands he has this very kind of short window of time here to make progress on this. He knows that President Trump is up for re-election next year, that South Korean President Moon Jae-in will be out of office in 2022. So he's very unlikely to get the same kind of perfect situation where people all want a deal. And he wants a deal because he desperately needs sanctions relief if he is going to tend to his main priority, which is growing the economy and boosting his, you know, right to claim the leadership of North Korea.
ZAKARIA: So, Parag, tell us with -- you know, with all of this, what do things look like going forward? The next few months in Asia, you say everyone is still trying to find a way to -- you know, to play both sides. Is -- are we moving toward more tension, less tension?
KHANNA: I would like to think less tension. If you look at just the North Korea situation, there -- you know, Kim has met with President Moon. He's met with Xi Jinping. He's met with Vladimir Putin. Even Shinzo Abe has said that he might entertain a meeting or a summit with Kim as well. So clearly Asians are trying to find a way to incrementally and peacefully absorb North Korea.
There are areas, Fareed, where, you know, over the last 30 years we have been worried and rightly so about escalation and conflict and World War III breaking out in Asia, whether it's Taiwan, South China Sea, North Korea, the China-Japan dispute. But in every instance, Asians have demonstrated sufficient maturity to dial down the tension, to walk back from the brink, to focus on their geo-economic, complementarities, over their geopolitical frictions.
And I don't see any reason why that pattern won't continue, even though we have to concede Asia is a serious arms bizarre. But there is a growing sort of deterrence as well in the region given all the maneuvering that's going on and uncertainty and no one really wants to see their economic growth be disrailed -- derailed or any other kind of significant instability that would require that the U.S. come in and re-impose itself as a hegemon in the region.
ZAKARIA: Evan, do you think that the Trump administration will reach a deal with China? I was struck by the fact that President Trump tweeted about Huawei saying, you know, they're a very bad company. But by the way if there is a deal, trade deal with China, maybe we can forgive them, which suggests that what Trump is doing with everything, he gives maximum pressure and then hoped for a deal.
MEDEIROS: I think it is 50-50 right now. I think Trump is not entirely sure exactly what his negotiating position is. He's surrounded by a group of economic nationalists. But I'm not sure they really want a deal. And at a minimum, they want supply chains in the U.S. economy to be less dependent on the Chinese economy. So sort of a distancing, if not an entire decoupling. The key is going to be will Trump go to the G-20 in Osaka, Japan at the end of June and will he meet Xi Jinping. And it's unclear -- Trump administration is not committed to going to that key international meeting. And if Trump and Xi don't meet, then the prospects of a deal go way down.
ZAKARIA: Fascinating conversation. Thank you all.
Next on GPS, will the war of words between the United States and Iran turn into real fighting? I'll talk with Admiral William McRaven, the former commander of U.S. Special Forces.
[10:23:25] ZAKARIA: On the night of April 30th, 2011, President Barack Obama ended a phone call with Admiral William McRaven by wishing him and his troops god speed. The president then went to the White House Correspondent's Dinner where he poked a little fun at then private citizen Donald J. Trump. Halfway around the world, McRaven prepped for a mission of monumental importance.
Hours later from an airbase in Jalalabad, Afghanistan, he commanded Seal Team Six as the Navy's top team was ferried into Pakistan where they killed Osama bin Laden. McRaven was on one of the screens the White House team was watching on the opposite side of this famous photograph. And observers there say that despite the incredible attention, McRaven's voice never changed inflection. You'll see why in a moment.
McRaven has now written a book about that episode and many others from his life and career, "Sea Stories: My Life in Special Operations."
ADM. WILLIAM MCRAVEN (RET.), U.S. NAVY: It's great to be here, Fareed. Thanks.
ZAKARIA: Not only did you kill Osama bin Laden, but you captured Saddam Hussein, you rescued Captain Phillips from the Somali pirates.
MCRAVEN: Well, to clarify, I was in charge of those, but of course it was the great soldiers and sailors that did all the hard work.
ZAKARIA: We're going to get to all that. But first I've got to ask you as somebody who has watched the Persian Gulf so carefully people are wondering does it strike you as likely that the Iranians would try to attack the United States, United States vessels? Is there -- you know, you spent a long time watching them. What is your sense?
MCRAVEN: Yes. I don't think they would, Fareed.
[10:25:02] And I have actually sailed through these Straits of Hormuz a number of times. And of course the U.S. Navy has been dealing with the Iranians for decades. And, you know, you got Iranian fast attack boats come out and they try to kind of penetrate close to the U.S. ships. The Navy knows how to deal with the Iranians. And I think it would be a terrible miscalculation on the part of the Iranians if they really decided to take a strike against the U.S. fleet.
It just would not go well for them and I don't think they're that stupid. I mean, I think they are thoughtful enough to realize that would be a bad mistake. And I heard the interim secretary of Defense, Pat Shanahan, talking about the fact that you want to be careful about miscalculations. And I think this is miscalculations on both sides. Right.
ZAKARIA: If something were to happen, if there were to be a military confrontation with Iran, you've also watched the Iranians enough to know they have a lot of proxies in a lot of parts. Things could get quite messy.
MCRAVEN: They could. I mean, you obviously have Hezbollah. You have kind of Shia militias in Iraq. And you have the RCG Quds force that can kind of shake the battlefield in certain ways. So you do have to worry about that. But, again, I think if you have a strike from Hezbollah or a Shia militia we will take that as a strike from Iran. So I'm hoping that the Iranians aren't -- again aren't foolish enough to do something like that because they understand we would connect the dots very quickly and we would find a way to retaliate.
ZAKARIA: Let me ask you about those three missions and many more of course that are not as high profile, what is the -- you're right about this in the book, what is the key -- what are the key traits you think you need to handle that kind of pressure?
MCRAVEN: Well, I was fortunate in that by the time, you know, I was put in charge of these missions, I had a lot of experience under my belt. I mean, I have been a Navy SEAL for 26 years when I became an admiral. And then in 2003 when I pinned on flag rank, I soon went out to Iraq. And so I was a fairly experienced Special Operations officer. And I had great soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines kind of working for me.
So you have to do a couple of things. One, you have to have the experience to understand how the missions are going to unfold. But two, and I think most importantly, you have to trust the troops to do the job.
ZAKARIA: What do you do when something goes wrong?
MCRAVEN: Well, you have a plan B, and a plan C and a plan D. You know, we talked a little bit about the raid into Abbottabad. The fact of the matter is when that helicopter went down in the compound, the reason I wasn't overly concerned, one, I was able to hear the radio traffic that was going on. So I knew pretty quickly that the guys were OK. And again we had a plan B. We knew that the potential for a helicopter to go down in the compound was always there. We thought that would occur by fire, but we had another helicopter standing by to help out. So all of our missions, we say in the military that no plan survives
first contact with the enemy. Every military planner, every officer in NCO understands that. You've got to have a backup plan and be ready to execute it.
ZAKARIA: How do you teach courage? Is there -- do you tell people not to get scared? Do you tell -- you know, for somebody who looks it from the outside, it seems -- why would you do this stuff? You're getting -- you know, they're so dangerous.
ZAKARIA: How do you get people past that danger?
MCRAVEN: Yes. You know, I think it is about taking care of the man or woman on your left or your right. And people who sometimes think they could never be courageous in a very difficult moment all of a sudden rise to the occasion and do the right thing. And I do -- I think they do the right thing because somewhere in their DNA it is about taking care of the man or woman on your left or your right.
It is rarely about, you know, the politics or it is rarely about the nature of the fight. It is always about the people that you are serving with and your willingness to sacrifice and to protect them. That's what makes men and women courageous I think at those difficult times.
ZAKARIA: So you said something very interesting recently. You said, you know, I used to think that God put me on earth to kill Osama bin Laden. And then you said, no, I have changed my mind. I think he put me on earth so that I could do that which would then give me the invitation to the University of Texas at Austin's commencement speech.
You gave a commencement speech that has gone viral. I mean, other than commencement speeches by Oprah Winfrey, this is -- and I checked it, It's been watched eight and a half million times on YouTube. Tell people what it is you think you said that resonated so much.
MCRAVEN: Yes. You know, as I, frankly, began to write the book, "Sea Stories," and you take a look at your life in its totality. You know, if you just look at life, you know, kind of slice by slice you kind of view things differently, but when I stood back as I was writing the book to look at it in its totality, when I got to the bin Laden raid and that went well, and you think, well, again, I'm a man of faith, you know, maybe God put me on this earth in order to bring justice to bin Laden.
But then the invitation to the University of Texas comes and I give this commencement speech, and it was, you know, little lessons learned from my time in SEAL training that clearly resonated with people. You know, I bumped into people every single day. I get cards and letters from folks that know nothing about the bin Laden raid. But they know I told them to make their bed. And the reason making your bed matters is because it kind of gets your day off right.
You start your day with a task completed, that encourages you to do another task and another. And it's also about the little things.
The point I try to make about the bed is, when I was talking to a SEAL instructor about, "Well, why should I make my bed?"
He said because, if you can't even make your bed right, how are we ever going to trust you to lead a complex SEAL mission? Doing the little things in life matter and it helps you to do the big things right.
ZAKARIA: Now, I've got to ask you. I've visited a lot of senior military officers and -- and they live like Roman emperors with their own fleets of planes...
... and aide-de-camps. Did you, at the height of your military power, make your own bed?
MCRAVEN: Absolutely, every single day. You have to. I mean, it is what starts your day off right.
ZAKARIA: Admiral McRaven, pleasure to have you on.
MCRAVEN: Great to be here, Fareed. Thanks.
ZAKARIA: For a link to Admiral McRaven University of Texas commencement address from 2014, go to my Twitter page, twitter.com/fareedzakaria.
Next on "GPS," Theresa May stepped out of number 10 Downing Street on Friday and announced she would resign on June 7th. What in the world will this mean for Brexit, for Britain, for the world?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
U.K. PRIME MINISTER THERESA MAY: I will shortly leave the job that it has been the honor of my life to hold, the second female prime minister, but certainly not the last. I do so with no ill will but with enormous and enduring gratitude to have had the opportunity to serve the country I love.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ZAKARIA: On Friday, in front of Number 10 Downing Street, Theresa May signaled the end of her embattled, almost three-year reign as Britain's prime minister.
So what happens now? Who might the next prime minister be?
Joining me now is Ellen Barry, chief international correspondent for the New York Times.
Ellen, is strike me that the story is a story of a, kind of, series of miscalculations. Theresa May begins hard-line saying, you know, "I'm going to negotiate with the Europeans and no deal is better than a bad deal." But the Europeans don't -- don't cooperate?
BARRY: Yeah, I think that's absolutely right. She -- in fact, she had not been a Brexiteer. She had campaigned for remain. And so when she became prime minister, it was almost as if she was trying to overcompensate by winning over her hard-liners.
ZAKARIA: And then she calls a new election, thinking that this will give her a mandate, and that doesn't really work?
BARRY: Not only did it not work, I mean, she turned out to be quite a dismal campaigner, and the conservative party actually lost its governing majority and had to govern as a minority party in coalition.
So she took a bad hand that she was dealt and she played it very badly. And she really made two important pivots at the 11th hour of the process. One of them was to reach across the aisle and try to work with Labor, centrists in Labor, to cobble together a cross-party coalition. This is something she resisted doing until the bitter, bitter end.
And the second was to make it clear to the country that she wasn't going to lead Britain into a no-deal -- both things that showed that she was flexible, that she was able to, sort of, take in -- sort of, take in the reality of her situation, but she did them both so late that she just didn't gain anything and she lost her core constituents.
ZAKARIA: The big message, the big lesson to me, Ellen, is that, at the end of the day, the Tory party is now dominated by people who really do want to leave Europe. In other words, whenever -- May's strategy was to, kind of, confront them with the bitter medicine that we might have to just jump off this cliff. And essentially they're saying, "Fine, let's jump off; let's have a hard Brexit; that's better than any of these softer variations."
BARRY: Right. But it's important to remember that, when the country decided to take the path of leaving the E.U., a no-deal exit was barely even discussed. It's really quite a radical solution. And because there was such a complacency that Europe was going to give Britain a sweetheart deal, people really weren't face to face with what this meant.
And there's just been a drift in public opinion and especially in the Tory party to, sort of, accepting that, "You know, economists may be, or trade experts may be warning us, but this is Project Fear and it's really not going to be so bad." And unfortunately, Theresa May, sort of, led the country in that direction by inserting into her speeches that no deal is better than a bad deal. This, kind of, was internalized for a lot of people in this country. And now that's the country she's trying to govern.
ZAKARIA: So what happens next?
BARRY: So what happens next? There's a long line of people who are throwing their hat into the ring to succeed her, and they're all more hard-line than she is. So they're all Brexity, hard Brexiteers who are building in, as part of their platform, that they will use no deal to the best of their ability to force Europe into making concessions now.
ZAKARIA: But Europe has made clear that it does not feel it needs to make concessions. So is a hard Brexit now more likely than it ever was?
BARRY: Right. So now we are walking into, I would say, a sort of constitutional standoff. We know that Parliament opposes a no-deal exit because they've already tested this twice in votes that showed that they would try to stop the government from taking this fairly radical step.
And we also know equally that someone like Boris Johnson, who is right now the, sort of, favored contender, has said clearly that he will not accept another extension and that no-deal is going to remain on the table.
So then -- so then the question arises whether the Parliament can stop a prime minister who is intent on leaving without a deal.
ZAKARIA: Just when we thought American politics were chaotic, you give us hope, Ellen Barry...
... that it's even more complicated in Britain. Thank you so much.
BARRY: We'll have to see. You're welcome.
ZAKARIA: Up next, the always insightful New York Times columnist David Brooks with some great ideas, but this time they are of a personal rather than a political nature. A terrific conversation, when we come back.
ZAKARIA: David Brooks was a celebrated political commentator when he helped found what was one of the seminal conservative publications of our era, The Weekly Standard. He left there in 2003 to become an even more celebrated columnist at the New York Times.
I, for one, have always wanted to read his writings. He has a great way of making sense of the often nonsensical political drama in Washington.
In recent years, though, his columns have taken a turn, veering from the political to the personal, as he experienced a reckoning of sorts in his life. He has now written a great book about that and the lessons from it, "The Second Mountain: The Quest For a Moral Life."
David Brooks, pleasure to have you on.
BROOKS: Good to be back with you.
ZAKARIA: So this book, in a sense, comes out of a personal breakdown for you? Describe it. BROOKS: Yeah. Well, I was living by the values that our culture
endorses, that career success can make you feel fulfilled, that life is an individual journey. So it was the culture of individualism, the culture of the meritocracy, that we get encouraged to by the college admissions process and the world around us.
And the wages of sin are sin, and so in 2013 I had a bad valley. My marriage had ended. My kids were leaving home to go off to college. I was part of the conservative movement, but conservatism had changed, and so I lost a lot of my friends that were in that movement.
ZAKARIA: You know, describe a little bit more that valley, though. Because I'll tell you a lot of people would tell me, during the period you were going through, "Something has happened to David Brooks; he's stopped writing about politics; he's -- he's writing about all this other stuff because he can't stand where conservatism has gone; he can't stand..."
... you know, "and so it's become a kind of escape." Was -- was that a fair reflection?
BROOKS: Yeah, well, I didn't like where conservatism was going, but it was not an escape. I do think our problems in our society are at the foundation of society, at the level of trust. The market and the state rest on trusting relationships. And if you don't have that, you have tribalism and you have people who are just -- have got a zero-sum mentality, a scarcity mindset, attack, build walls, hate others.
And so when you leave people naked and alone, the existential anxiety turns them fanatical. And so some people in the valley are broken -- broken. They get bitter, resentful; they lash out. And we see a lot of that in our politics.
ZAKARIA: So out of the valley comes the second mountain?
ZAKARIA: Describe what that second mountain is.
BROOKS: Yeah, well, the first mountain is about acquiring success and building up the ego and making an identity. And these are things we have to do. The second mountain is about contribution. It's living out of your heart and soul, not out of the desires of your ego. And it's egalitarian.
And one of the things that, super-fortunate, that happened to me in 2013 was I got invited over to a couple's house who had a kid who was in the D.C. public schools who had a friend who was -- had no home, basically. His mom had some health and other issues.
And so they said, "This kid can stay with us." And then that kid had a friend. And by the time I walk over there in 2013, there are, like, 30 kids around the dinner table, 15 sleeping around the house. And it's an embracing community. And I walk in there and I hold out my hand to shake a kid's hand and
the kid says, "We don't shake hands here; we just hug here." And I'm, like, not the huggiest person on the face of the earth.
But I've been going to that house every Thursday night since, having dinner with them. And they have -- they've embodied a better way to live, which is complete emotional transparency. They are completely open. And they -- they have the effect of rubbing it off on you and showing you a better way to live.
And so I have been embraced by a community. And when you get embraced by a completely open community, I've tried to take that out into all my communities now.
ZAKARIA: How does that work with the -- with the first mountain?
Because you are a super-achiever. You're a New York Times columnist. You know, you can hobnob with the -- the wealthy and the powerful. Do you try to apply that model of openness, transparency, (inaudible), with that crowd, or do you say to yourself, "I have two distinct worlds"?
BROOKS: No, I try to do it everywhere. And -- and I don't renounce the first mountain. I still have my job. I -- God help me, I check my Amazon ranking when I get a book.
And so the desires of the ego don't go away, and you struggle with them, "How do people like me; am I popular" and all that kind of stuff. That doesn't go away. But the problem with capitalism, if you only have a capitalist ethos, if it's only competition, it's only about money, it's only about ego, status, then you shrivel. And, frankly, I think our president is an example of that.
So you've got to live in the world and be part of a capitalist world, but you have to have a competing value system. And the people on the second mountain, the people in that community, the people in communities I have now seen all around the country, they have a different value system. They have moral motivation. They're not motivated totally by money and status and power.
And the big distinction I try to draw is happiness is what you win on the first mountain. You achieve some success, you get a promotion, you're happy. And that's great. But joy is what you get on the second mountain. Joy is when the self disappears, when you're -- you're lost in your work because it really makes a difference in the world, when you're lost in your love for your child or your spouse, where you forget where you end and the other person begins.
And happiness is good, but joy is better. And as a society, we've so much geared just to that happiness and we've broken the connections between us.
ZAKARIA: David Brooks, always a pleasure.
BROOKS: Great. Thank you for having me.
ZAKARIA: And we will be back.
ZAKARIA: U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin has said that, before imposing new tariffs on China, he must first study the consequences for American consumers.
But not everyone will risk losses in this trade war, and it brings me to my question. What nation stands to benefit the most from the U.S.- China trade war, according to a United Nations report? Is it Japan, Mexico, South Korea or Canada? Stay tuned and we'll tell you the correct answer.
My book of the week is actually a podcast, Michael Lewis's "Against the Rules." It's a series of great stories, the type that Lewis is always able to find, and it's all about shedding light on the fact that we Americans no longer trust impartial umpires or referees -- true whether you're talking about actual sports officials or judges or others. We've lost faith in the idea that there are impartial people who can call it like it is. It's really well done, one of my favorite ever podcasts.
And now for the last look. We're not even halfway through 2019, but 2020 is already in full swing, with the most diverse presidential field in American history. But how will people respond to that diversity?
A new Gallup poll revealed what characteristics the American public would accept or not about a presidential candidate. In a race with a gay candidate, Pete Buttigieg, would homosexuality be a hindrance to a vote? Seventy-six percent of Americans said it would not.
But can age discrimination stop a candidate in his or her tracks? Well, 71 percent of Americans would be willing to vote for candidates like Eric Swalwell, Tulsi Gabbard and Pete Buttigieg, in their 30s, but only 63 percent would pull the lever for septuagenarians like Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders and of course Donald Trump.
Most Americans, 93 percent, are willing to vote for a Jewish candidate, 13 percent more than would back an evangelical Christian. Only 66 percent would vote for a Muslim. Still, more people would support a Muslim candidate than one who does not believe in God.
And what did Gallup find was most likely to turn voters away from a candidate? Socialism. Less than half of people surveyed would vote for a well-qualified candidate who also happens to be a socialist.
So the good news for Bernie Sanders is no one cares that he's Jewish. His age and his political ideology, though, could be a bit of a problem.
The answer to my "GPS" challenge this week is B. Mexico stands to pick up $27 billion in trade as U.S. and Chinese firms reorganize their production to disentangle the world's largest economies.
Donald Trump is so unpopular in Mexico that I don't think folks will be lining up to say "gracias."
If you guessed wrong, don't worry. The report by the U.N.'s Conference on Trade and Development predicts that Canada and Japan each stand to rake in over $20 billion and South Korea isn't far behind.
The real winner, though, is not a country but an economic block. The E.U. will pull in about $70 billion, according to U.N. estimates. Perhaps trade wars do have winners after all, just not the United States or China.
Thanks to all of you for being part of my program this week. I will see you next week.