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Fareed Zakaria GPS

The Deep Divide in the GOP; Clinton Versus Trump on the Economy; Should U.S. Make Voting Mandatory?; Interview with Malcolm Gladwell; Prepping for the Olympics. Aired 10-11a ET

Aired August 07, 2016 - 10:00   ET


[10:00:25] FAREED ZAKARIA, CNN ANCHOR: This is GPS, the GLOBAL PUBLIC SQUARE. Welcome to all of you in the United States and around the world. I'm Fareed Zakaria.


ZAKARIA: We'll begin today's show with Donald Trump's tough week in which he offended everyone from Gold Star mothers.

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: She was standing there, she had nothing to say.

ZAKARIA: To babies.

TRUMP: Actually I was only kidding. You can get the baby out of here.

ZAKARIA: And there has been more talk of GOP defections.

Can Republicans do anything? Will they? I asked two prominent ones.

Then, what Donald Trump should have been talking about is the weakest economic growth in decades. Who can boost it, Trump or Clinton? The "New York Times's" Paul Krugman versus Trump adviser Stephen Moore in a debate.

Also, the brilliant bestselling author Malcolm Gladwell offers his revisionist state on what Hillary Clinton has to do with an obscure British 19th century painter, what Barack Obama has in common with gym goers, and his plans to remake the Olympic Games.


ZAKARIA: But first here's my take. Earlier this week I was asked on CNN to make sense of one more case in which Donald Trump had said something demonstrably false and then explain it away with a caustic tweet and an indignant interview.

I replied that there was a pattern here and a term for a person who did this kind of thing. A bullshit artist. I was not using that label casually and in case you have sensitive ears I'm going to use it a few more times.

Trump is many things, some of them dark and dangerous, but at his core, he is BS artist. Harry Frankfurt, an eminent moral philosopher, wrote a brilliant essay in 1986 called "On Bullshit." Frankfurt himself wrote about Trump in this vein in "TIME" as have Jeet Heer and Eldar Sarajlic. Frankfurt distinguishes crucially between lies and BS. "Telling a lie is an act with a sharp focus. It is designed to insert a particular falsehood at a specific point. In order to invent a lie at all, the teller of a lie must think he knows what is true. But someone engaging in BS," Frankfurt explains, "is neither on the side of the true nor on the side of the false, his eyes not on the facts at all."

Frankfurt writes that the BS's focus is panoramic, rather than particular. And has more spacious opportunities for improvisation, color and imaginative play. This is less a matter of craft than of art. Hence the familiar notion of the "bullshit artist," he writes.

This has been Donald Trump's mode all his life. He boasts, and boasts, and boasts about his business, his buildings, his books, his wives, much of it is a concoction of hyperbole and falsehood. And when he's found out he's like that guy we have all met making wild claims at the bar who, when confronted with the truth, quickly response, I knew that.

Take, for instance, the most extraordinary example, his non- relationship with Vladimir Putin. In May 2014, addressing the National Press Club, here's what Trump said.


TRUMP: I was in Russia, I was in Moscow recently, and I spoke, indirectly and directly, with President Putin, who could not have been nicer.


ZAKARIA: In November 2015, at a FOX debate, he said this of Putin.


TRUMP: I got to know him very well because we were both on "60 Minutes."


ZAKARIA: Did Trump really believe that you can say something like that on live TV and no one would check? Did he think that no one would notice that the "60 Minutes" show consisted of two separate prerecorded interviews with Putin in Moscow and Trump in New York? By that logic, I have gotten to know Franklin Roosevelt very well because I have run some clips of him on my television show.

In fact, it was just BS. Or look at the issue that fueled his political rise both arisen. Trump claimed in 2011 that he had sent investigators to Hawaii and that, quote, "they cannot believe what they're finding." For weeks, Trump continued to imply that there were huge findings to be released soon. He hinted to George Stephanopoulos, we're going to see what happens. That was five years ago in April 2011. Nothing happened. In fact it

appears highly unlikely that Trump ever even sent any investigators to Hawaii in the first place. In 2011, Salon asked Trump's spokesman, Michael Cohen, for any details about the investigators. Cohen explained that it was all very secret naturally.

[10:05:06] Trump has said the same about his plans to defeat ISIS, which he can't reveal. He's boasted that he has a strategy to win solidly Democratic states this is fall, but he won't reveal which ones. Even by Trump's standards, that one is a head-scratcher. Won't we notice when he campaigns in those states? Or will it be so secret that even the voters won't be told?

Of course, it's really all just B.S.

Harry Frankfurt concludes that liars and truth-tellers are both acutely aware of facts and truths. The BS artist, however, has lost all connection with reality. "By virtue of this," Frankfurt writes, "bullshit is a greater enemy of truth than lies are."

We see the consequences. As the crazy talk continues, standard rules of fact, truth and reality have disappeared in this campaign. Donald Trump has piled such vast quantities of his trademark product into the political arena that the stench is now overwhelming and unbearable.

For more go to and read my "Washington Post" column this week. And let's get started.

So that's my take on Trump, but let's discuss where Trump and the GOP go from here. Joining me is Bret Stephens, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for the "Wall Street Journal," and Emily Miller, senior political correspondent for One America News Network, and a friend of both Donald Trump and his campaign.

Bret, let me ask you, you know, looking at all the stuff that's been happening for the last few weeks, what strikes me is a really interesting difference. The conservative movement, intellectuals like yourself, George Will, the editors of the "National Review," the editors of the "Weekly Standard," have all announced and distanced themselves from Donald Trump very consistently. The Republican establishment on the other hand has not, presumably because they felt this might be a road to victory.

As Donald Trump's poll numbers drop, do you think that the Republican establishment will find suddenly find its principles the way the conservative establishment did?

BRET STEPHENS, COLUMNIST, WALL STREET JOURNAL: Well, that's what I'm hoping for. That's why I wrote my column. Look, both as a matter of political practice, good practice, as well as the long-term interest of the party, I think they have to begin distancing themselves immediately.

It's very clear that Trump is going to lose, Trump is going to lose by historic margins and he is going to be a millstone around their necks in this elections, so the idea that they have to support Trump in order to protect the down ballot side of the ticket, I don't think holds water anymore but more importantly, Trump is not just politically toxic, I think he's become morally toxic. And the danger is that the association with Trump is going to taint otherwise honorable Republican leaders who are trying to find their way, find the path in this election season so that the Republican brand itself is going to be damaged for multiple election cycles if they can ever recover.

I think they quicker they disassociate themselves from the man, not just his ideas so to speak, but from the man himself the healthier the party will be after November.

ZAKARIA: Emily, I'm guessing you disagree. But also tell me, what are you hearing? Are there -- are there Republicans who are beginning to worry about their survival?

EMILY MILLER, SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT, ONE AMERICA NEWS NETWORK: No, not at all. In fact I just got off the phone with a high-ranking official at the RNC. They're frustrated by this past week obviously. It's been not focused on Hillary Clinton, it's been focused on those side issues. But they called it a family feud. You know, they're having -- but no doubt about it, this party is firmly behind Donald Trump for president, firmly behind all their candidates for president, and I think you'll see going forward -- first of all it's way too premature to say Donald Trump is over.

I know we've been doing this for months. I think the last time I was on your show everyone said Donald Trump is over then his poll numbers went up. It's too soon to say. When we start seeing poll numbers in September, when the debates start, mid-September through October, those are the numbers that count. A lot of people are undecided, people have flipped. I've said this --

ZAKARIA: But you're seeing in states like New Hampshire, you're seeing in crucial states, in Illinois, Republican senators who are up for election, their poll numbers are sinking. So isn't that --

MILLER: But do we know -- there's -- we haven't seen a correlation between Trump at the top of the ticket and their problems.

ZAKARIA: Let me ask you, because I really feel like -- what I'm interested in is where the Republican Party goes. You worked for Colin Powell. Do you think Colin Powell will come out and say something against Donald Trump?

[10:10:02] MILLER: I do not speak for Colin Powell. And I'm sure he will see this and be very grateful that I say that. As you know, he endorsed Donald -- President Obama twice. And I know that he and Donald Trump are not friends. Whether he endorses anyone or stays silent, I honestly don't know the answer to that. He hasn't told me that. But I think this election is unlike any other election because, General Powell aside, because he obviously split from the party in the last two elections before there was a split in the party.

Donald Trump has -- his poll numbers with independents is so much higher than Hillary or people not even independent, people who have no party affiliation. This has split up everything. The standard Republican punditry, the standard party lines are all up in the air. Hillary Clinton is holding her party and pulling some of the moderates to her. Donald Trump is pulling in some Democrats, more Democrats than she's pulling in Republicans. He's pulling in the middle, it's just not fitting into the standard party lines, and -- so I don't think we can put any past patterns into this race.

STEPHENS: You know, just very quickly, this is the standard line of the Trump side of the party that all of us who oppose him are just a bunch of elites who live in a cellar corridor, in this bubble of unimaginable wealth. I wish I had been born into an extremely wealthy New York real estate family and been given multimillion dollar loans to get my start in life. I started at the bottom like so many of us did and to the extent that I have achieved anything I think it's -- a lot of Americans feel the same way. It's not a convincing argument.

And it's particularly not convincing when Trump is telling so many people who are at the bottom, who are first generation Americans, who are trying to rise, that he has a different vision. It's not a vision of opportunity of mobility. It's basically increasingly a vision of the privileges of a white ethnic bloc. That's who he's speaking to. And if the Republican Party becomes essentially the white party, it is going to be the death of it, not only for demographic reasons but for reasons of principle.

The party of Lincoln is a party of opportunity for everyone. It's a party about the right to rise and Mr. Trump unfortunately doesn't represent that view.

MILLER: I guess you're missing the point that --

STEPHENS: Can the Republican Party recapture that after his loss, I think is the great question.

MILLER: I think you're missing the point. I'm not talking --

ZAKARIA: Last point.

MILLER: I'm not talking about Donald Trump -- I'm talking about when I say the elites of New York and D.C., and the media, the mainstream media, Donald Trump, as you've seen him go to today, every day you're going out to these town halls and these rallies and getting thousands and thousands of people showing up. He's just matched Hillary Clinton in fundraising in small donors. These are not big donors. Big donors have walked away from him.

So he has a popularity. He not personally -- no one is talking about him personally as being elite because obviously he's rich and lives in Manhattan in Trump Towers. But he speaks in a way and represents what these people in the rustbelt, in the main faction areas, and people who, this terrible -- we just got our quarterly numbers out and the economy is still weak and wages are still low, and they don't think feel like people in New York and D.C. and this media is expressing what they -- their problems which is in this day of stories, that run around for the days, but it's the bigger problems of their economy and their home and their personal safety. STEPHENS: The American people deserve a president who can speak

grammatical English.

MILLER: That's so snobby.

STEPHENS: No, it's true.

ZAKARIA: On that note --

MILLER: (INAUDIBLE) from a columnist.

ZAKARIA: We're going to go.


ZAKARIA: We're going to have to go.

Next on GPS, we'll lose something startling. Discuss some of the substance of this campaign. Who has the better ideas to get America growing again? The debate, Paul Krugman versus Stephen Moore.



[10:18:13] TRUMP: I have made billions of dollars in business making deals. Now I am going to make our country rich again.

HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: Well, here's what I want you to know. I do have a jobs program. And as president, I'm going to make sure that you'll hear, you're hired.


ZAKARIA: So who's got a better plan for the American economy? Let us have a debate. Stephen Moore is a senior economic adviser to the Donald Trump campaign and an economic consultant with Freedom Works. And Paul Krugman is a columnist for the "New York Times" and a Nobel Laureate in Economics.

So, Stephen, let me ask you to start off, which is, your argument is that the slow growth we are now watching is a consequence of Obama's economic policies, which Hillary Clinton will pursue and therefore we will be condemned to slow economic growth. What is Trump going to do to reverse that?

STEPHEN MOORE, SENIOR ECONOMIC ADVISER TO THE DONALD TRUMP CAMPAIGN: By the way, Fareed, you summarize your position. I think Donald Trump's position exactly right. That we've had -- by the way, that isn't just my opinion. What I have asked Donald Trump to do is take with him everywhere he goes, every speech he gives, the front page of the "Wall Street Journal" last Saturday which said, "worst economic recovery since the Great Depression." And that's exactly what this has been.

You know, we've actually downgraded our growth rate from a measly 2 percent when we should be growing it for, narrowed onto 1 percent, which is near recession levels, and I actually think the business sector in this country is in a recession right now. So these are abysmal numbers. And frankly I think the Barack Obama-Paul Krugman manual has failed.

What we are going to do to change that, I think we're going to focus on three things, and Mr. Trump is going to give a major economic speech on Monday, focusing on number one, reforming our tax system and cutting our business taxes to bring jobs back to the United States.

[10:20:05] Number two, a pro-America energy policy to produce our oil and gas and coal, and we can be the energy dominant country in the world. And number three --


ZAKARIA: Well, Stephen, we are the dominant energy producer in the world.

MOORE: We're still importing oil. We can't within five years be actually exporting oil and gas and coal rather than importing which would be a huge plus for the economy. And then finally the -- I know Donald Trump talks a lot about the regulatory burden and how we can unshackle businesses so they can grow because there's an old saying, if you don't have healthy businesses, you don't have healthy jobs.

ZAKARIA: Paul, this is -- you know, I'm sure there's a critique you're familiar with. But briefly what's wrong with it?

PAUL KRUGMAN, COLUMNIST, THE NEW YORK TIMES: Well, first of all, it's worth just thinking for a moment about jobs. Right? If we look at job creation, particularly private sector job creation, look, Obama -- the Obama era has been a whole lot better than the Bush era. Right? Obama -- you do the comparison on the charts and it's not even funny. It's just -- it's ridiculous how much better. So if these are anti- growth policies, how come we have all this job creation?

ZAKARIA: And Bush put in place a big tax cut than Obama --

KRUGMAN: Bush began with a big tax cut. Obama had a substantial tax increase at the beginning of 2013, job -- followed by the best job growth since the 1990s. He had the implementation of Obamacare, which everybody said -- on the right said was going to be a job killer. Job growth just kept on plugging along at quite rapid rates. So this has been really good. Now productivity growth has been disappointing.

ZAKARIA: But even growth, I mean, the Fed's forecast, the administration forecast, all started out with 3 percent, 3.5 percent growth.

KRUGMAN: No, no. Nobody every forecast --

ZAKARIA: in '08 or '09?

KRUGMAN: '08 and '09, but that was --

ZAKARIA: But even that didn't come true.

KRUGMAN: But that was a known error. I mean, that was -- people like me were saying look, this is a post-mortem recession. This is the aftermath of a financial crisis. It's not going to be a recovery that is going to be all that fast. We know that this tends to be slow. And you know where we are now, we are pretty close to full employment at most measures.

MOORE: But, Paul, the problem isn't that we haven't created enough jobs, because you're right, job creation has been decent, not great but decent. The problem has been that they're McDonald's jobs, they're Wal-Mart jobs, they're minimum wage jobs, Fareed. That's why the left keeps obsessing about the minimum wage because all the jobs we're creating are so low.

Now the question is how do you create not just more jobs, but middle class jobs that pay you $50,000, $60,000, $80,000 a year, and there what you need is you need more business investment. And that's the thing that worries me more about this economy right now, Fareed. If you look over the last year, business spending and investment, and factories and -- and equipment and computers, that's fallen off a cliff because businesses feel like -- they're under assault from Washington.

And I think just, you know, lifting that veil of fear of businesses by putting someone like Donald Trump in the White House who is a businessman, who does want to cut their taxes and regulations, and I just disagree with Paul Krugman on this. I mean, you go back to the Kennedy era when we cut tax rates, when you look at the Reagan era, those were the biggest booms we ever had in this country, not just for rich people, for the middle class as well.

KRUGMAN: Let's just say, the Clinton era boom, following a tax increase, was bigger than the Reagan era boom. Right? Clinton greater than Reagan, which doesn't fit that story. Obama better than Bush. Bush cuts taxes, Obama raised them. It's kind of -- it's really kind of sad. I mean, it's actually kind of pathetic, Steve. You're going back to the Reagan tax cut 35 years ago.

MOORE: And the Kennedy --

KRUGMAN: And that's your -- and the Kennedy tax cuts which is a very -- totally different environment.

ZAKARIA: Which by the way, the marginal rates from 91 percent to 70 percent.

KRUGMAN: That's right. And here we are looking -- you know, we now have 25 years of evidence. We now have -- you know, we have Clinton, Bush, Obama, and of those three, the ranking in terms of success, in terms of job creation, in terms of economic growth, it's Clinton, Obama, Bush, and you're saying but we should believe in your recommendations because of something that happened 35 years ago where --

(CROSSTALK) KRUGMAN: You know, I can argue that started with you but it's a good story to tell.

MOORE: In fact I think a lot of Trump voters -- the reason Trump won those nomination, I think, is because voters don't like at all what Barack Obama has done with the economy, but you know what, you're right, Paul Krugman, they didn't like too much what happened under George W. Bush. We had record levels of spending, we had - you know, and we're going to turn that around.

But, look, you can't -- when you look at Bill Clinton, I actually think if Hillary Clinton were going to govern the way Bill Clinton did, I would vote for her. But she is -- she wants more spending, she wants more debt. You know this, Paul Krugman, government spending as a percentage of GDP fell more under Bill Clinton than any president in 30 or 40 years.


KRUGMAN: And the Cold War had a little bit to do with that.

MOORE: That (INAUDIBLE) of philosophy. Government spending went down and government -- and the growth of the economy went up.

ZAKARIA: Thank you, gentlemen, for a feisty debate.

Next on GPS, fewer than 54 percent of Americans voted in the last president election, low turnout is the norm in America, but it is very low compared with other countries. We have a fix when we come back.

[10:25:04] Don't forget if you miss a show, go to for a link to my iTunes podcast.


ZAKARIA: Now for our "What in the World" segment.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: And then there's Donald Trump. Don't boo, vote.


ZAKARIA: President Obama urged audience members of the Democratic National Convention last week to express themselves at the voting booth. Only 60 million Americans voted in the Republican or Democratic primaries and half of those citizens voted for a candidate other than Trump or Clinton, according to the "New York Times." In fact only 9 percent of the entire country cast ballots for either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, as the "Times" pointed out.

And it's not just this whacky election. The United States consistently has voting rates that are among the lowest in the developed world. Only 53.6 percent of eligible citizens voted in the 2012 election according to Pew. By comparison, Pew reports that 84.3 percent of Turkish adult citizens and 87.2 percent of eligible voters in Belgium exercised the right to vote in their most recent national elections.

Why? Well, maybe because voting is mandatory in Belgium and Turkey. And you get fined if you don't go to the polls. They are just two of the 26 countries in the world that have some form of compulsory voting, according to the Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance.

So should the United States follow suit to boost turnout?

President Obama has pointed out mandatory voting could be transformative.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The people who tend not to vote are young; they're lower-income; they're skewed more heavily towards immigrant groups and minority groups. There's a reason why some folks try to keep them away from the polls. We should want to get them into the polls.


ZAKARIA: The president touted Australia as a success story. Mandatory voting was introduced "Down Under" in 1924 to address abysmal voter participation rates. A fine of 20 Australian dollars has been enough of a disincentive to mobilize voters. Over 90 percent of Aussies voted in the last federal election, according to the Australian Electoral Commission. Not only are Australians more represented; they might even be more politically aware. Quartz points to a groundbreaking comparative study which shows that countries that strongly enforce compulsory voting have populations that are more politically informed.

In the study, Jill Sheppard, a political scientist from Australian National University, surmises that, in countries with strong enforcement, quote, "compulsory voting increases citizens' political knowledge, either because voters choose to become informed, given the requirement to vote, or because the process of voting itself imparts incidental knowledge," unquote.

Back in the United States, jury duty and taxes are mandatory, so why not voting?

At the very least, the government should make it easier for Americans to cast a ballot, like in Sweden, where citizens are automatically registered to vote and turnout is among the highest in the OECD, according to Pew.

Or how about Oregon, the only state that automatically registers people to vote when they get a driver's license or state ID, a step in the right direction?

Or take Estonia, the small Baltic nation, which allows online voting.

On the other hand, the United States might look to countries like Australia, Brazil and Greece, which, according to Think Progress, do a very simple thing; they hold elections on weekends so people can partake without having to skip work.

After all, American elections are only on Tuesdays because of truly arcane logic. In 1845, Congress deduced that Sunday was the Sabbath. It would take a day for people to travel into town by horse-and-buggy to vote. And Wednesday was market in the farming communities, so Tuesday was the most convenient day for voting. Clearly our society has evolved. The rules governing our elections should do as well.

Next on GPS, the great Malcolm Gladwell gives us some of the big ideas he's been pushing on his terrific new podcast called Revisionist History.


ZAKARIA (voice over): According to current polls and pundits, there is a strong possibility that Hillary Clinton will be elected president on November 8, and she will make history as the first female president of the United States, right on the heels of the first black president of the United States. But do firsts of this kind inspire seconds and thirds? Will future presidential election contests feature more women and African-Americans?

That's something my next guest has been thinking about a lot for his new podcast. Malcolm Gladwell is one of the world's bestselling authors. He now hosts a terrific new podcast. It is called Revisionist History. You can find it at

(on camera): Malcolm, pleasure to have you on.


ZAKARIA: Your podcasts deal with all kinds of fascinating subjects, but they have contemporary significance. So one of them -- you know, one thinks of Hillary Clinton, because it's really about what happens to a woman when she enters a man's world. And you go back in history to a kind of unusual history?

GLADWELL: Yeah. Yeah, the idea behind the podcast is revisionist history. So in each episode I try to reexamine something I think has been either forgotten or misunderstood.

In that case, I -- I have long been fascinated by this English painter called Elizabeth Thompson, who, in the late 19th Century, is briefly the most famous painter in all of England, at a time when there were no women in the world of painting. And painting was a huge deal in the 19th century, obviously; it's a -- it's an incredibly prestigious profession. And -- and she, sort of, breaks in and has this brilliant painting which hangs in the salon in, like, the best position, called "Roll Call." And everyone becomes convinced that she is going to be the one who breaks down the door for all women to the world of art. So she's thought of as being this kind of pioneer, right?

And so everyone, sort of, pats themselves on the back about it, "Wow, England has finally opened its doors to talent wherever talent comes from."

And then, the instant she has this breakthrough with this brilliant painting, boom, they slam the door, and...

ZAKARIA: And there are no more great painters?

GLADWELL: There are no more -- so the next time -- it was thought that she might become a member of the Royal Academy of Art, and as it turns out -- this was in 1873 -- there wasn't another woman who joins the Royal Academy until the 1930s. So everyone thought that, you know, women would be joining, willy-nilly, in the 1870s. It doesn't happen for another 50 or 60 years.

And this is a phenomenon. It's the "token" phenomenon. It's -- and there's a term that psychologists use -- a lovely work by a guy named Dan Effron called -- "moral licensing," which says that, when a favored group, a majority group, does an act of generosity towards an outsider, it doesn't necessarily signal that more acts of generosity are coming. Sometimes it gives them -- it just gives them license to then go back to their old ways.

So the thing that perpetuates prejudice is acts of openness, right? It's such a fantastically interesting idea. So if you look at anti- semitism in Germany in the 18th and 19th century, the Germans didn't hate all Jews; they liked some Jews. There were German Jews who they adored and held close to their heart. And it was that love of a very small number of Jews that gave them permission to hate the rest.

ZAKARIA: Is -- is some of this -- because you talk about it with regard to Obama...


ZAKARIA: Is some of this that, when you allow in some, there is also a backlash?

GLADWELL: Yes. This is a -- this is a way of describing the psychological mechanisms of backlash. So you can -- Effron and others, these psychologists, have tested this out in an enormous number of settings. You know, a classic -- a very small, noncontroversial version of this is dieting is this. If I go to the gym, I give myself permission to have an enormous unhealthy meal, right? That's the same phenomenon. By doing some good work, I then say, OK, it's all right for me to backslide and do a bad work.

But I really think it's most interesting with respect to discrimination. And it explains why discrimination persists generation after generation, even when there are these -- every now and again -- these hopeful signs. So, I mean, a good question is, now that you have one black president, is a second black president more or less likely, right?

That's what this kind of work would suggest.

ZAKARIA: And what you're suggesting is actually less likely? GLADWELL: Maybe less likely, you know. Maybe Donald Trump is what you get when you've had two terms of Obama, in other words, that people, having said, "OK, we have been this country that's open to opening the White House to, you know, a very, very different kind of president; maybe we can go back to our, kind of, baser -- I mean, I'm telegraphing my feelings about the presidency, but maybe you can return to your, kind of, baser instincts once you have been so generous and open for eight years?

And what do you think it says for Hillary?

GLADWELL: Well, so, in that first podcast, I -- the, kind of, heart of it is an interview with Julia Gillard, who was the first female prime minister of Australia. And it's all about what happens after she takes office. She's subjected to the most extraordinary, devastating, unbelievable level of misogynistic vitriol. And she ends up giving this famous speech in the Australian parliament, where she, kind of, finally has had enough.


JULIA GILLARD, FORMER AUSTRALIAN PRIME MINISTER: And I will not be lectured about sexism and misogyny by these men. I will not.


GLADWELL: And that is a classic example of moral licensing. Having opened the door to the first female prime minister in the history of Australia, Australians feel free to say the most unspeakable things about her. I mean, I'm not going to go into them here, but the stuff that was said about her -- I mean, it's astonishing to think that people in a modern democracy would say those kinds of things.

And it makes me think, if Hillary Clinton wins, what happens? Does -- does the fact of her victory, and the achievement of our first-ever female president, open the door to people venting a level of misogynistic vitriol that would have been unthinkable before her election?

I, sort of, think -- you know, and I say this -- I think I would say this even if I was not a Hillary Clinton supporter -- the level of scrutiny she is given, for real or imagined misdeeds, is far greater than an equivalent male would be given. I don't think that's an outrageous statement.

She gets -- people pick over things she does in a quite an extraordinary way. I would imagine, if she were to get elected, that undue scrutiny would ramp up. Why? Because that's what happens to every woman who -- who enters a previous male world.

ZAKARIA: Up next, Gladwell will tell us what he thinks of the Olympics. He has a plan to fix them.


GLADWELL: This notion that everything has to take place in Rio, or London before it, or -- is so nuts.


ZAKARIA: Don't forget, if you miss a show, go to for a link to my iTunes podcast.


ZAKARIA (voice over): The Rio Olympics have barely begun, but it's time to start getting ready for the next Olympics, which is 550 days away. The 2018 Games will be held in Pyongchang, South Korea, not to be confused with Pyongyang, North Korea.

Malcolm Gladwell is my guest, and he wants to tell you his take on the Olympics. He is, of course, mega-bestselling author of books such as "The Tipping Point" and "Blink," and he is the host of a wonderful new podcast called Revisionist History.

(on camera): I know that you think that the Olympics are fundamentally flawed, but you have a solution to them, which most people don't. You know, people have gone on about the corruption, the -- you actually have a fix?

GLADWELL: Well, one fix won't do it. But, I mean, I have many feelings about the Olympics, mostly motivated by the fact that I think Rio has the potential to be a disaster, a disaster on the level of, kind of, multi-international disaster that we haven't seen in a long time. First -- I mean, so many things could go wrong. But I think a core of the problem has now become that the Olympics -- every year we make it bigger and more complicated. Every year the -- every time, every four years, the cost of it grows. Every four years, the security concerns grow even more, sort of, terrifying. Every year the job gets harder and more expensive.

ZAKARIA: And the amount of money becomes so large that the corruption becomes, in a sense, almost inevitable?

GLADWELL: The corruption becomes bigger because we're talking about billions of dollars at stake. So you have this thing which is, I think, so unwieldy that it's time to break up the Olympics. There is...

ZAKARIA: Which means what?

GLADWELL: There's zero reason to have everybody in one place, right? This notion that everything has to take place in Rio, or London before it, or -- is so nuts, like where is it written that the rower has got to row within the same geographical proximity as the runner has got to run, right?

No, break it up into logical parts, four, five parts, and have a country take each part. For example, I'm a big running fan. Can I just say how absolutely insane it is to have people run long distances in equatorial Brazil in the month of July, right?

This is insanity. Who thought -- this is the craziest notion. We had a marathon in Beijing in 2008 that was so hot that people were risking their lives. You don't put the runners in hot...

ZAKARIA: You put them in Iceland, Norway...

GLADWELL: Yes. Run -- I mean, Sweden -- Stockholm would be a fantastic place to have the track every four years, and have the -- you know, you could have the gymnastics in Rio because they're inside with air conditioning.

Like, the point is that it's now -- and, by the way, I cannot believe that Brazil will look back on the Rio Games with anything but regret. At a time when the country is in crisis, they have devoted billions of dollars, not just in resources, but also the attention of their leadership has been towards essentially a set of games for the rest of the world that will leave them impoverished and the physical plant of which will be essentially unusable for the rest of its life. I mean, this is -- makes no sense.

ZAKARIA: I don't think you're going to get on the International Olympic Committee any time soon.


Malcolm Gladwell, pleasure to have you on.

GLADWELL: Thanks, as always, Fareed.

ZAKARIA: Next, on GPS, the human Olympics pit man against man, woman against woman, but Russia is competing with Rio with war games of a kind. You won't want to miss this, when we come back.


ZAKARIA: The 2016 Summer Olympic Games have, of course, begun in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The modern Olympic Games have been happening now for 120 years. But Rio is the first South American city to play host to one. It brings me to my question. What year were an Olympic Games first hosted in a country outside Europe or North America? Is it 1920, 1940, 1956, or 1972?

Stay tuned and we'll tell you the correct answer.

This week's book of the week is Fawaz Gerges's "ISIS: A History." This is quite simply the definitive book on the group by a very smart, well-informed guide to the region, superbly researched, well-written and intelligent throughout. Everyone opining about ISIS should be required to read this book first. At the very least, they should read its wise concluding chapter.

And now for the last look. The past few weeks have not been easy for Russian sports fans. Doping allegations are keeping scores of Russian athletes on the sidelines at the Olympics. But have no fear. Perhaps giving Rio a run for its money, Russia is now hosting its own international sporting event.

Last Saturday, just outside of Moscow, the second annual International Army Games opened, a two-week-long, 19-country military competition. Interested in watching sniper versus sniper, war medic versus war medic? You've come to the right place.

But the piece de resistance is the tank biathlon. In this contest, tanks navigate a complex obstacle course through trenches, over hills, and into water, and then fire at targets. Tank teams are scored on speed and accuracy. Other than a sniper team from Greece, there are no representatives from NATO countries participating in this year's games.

With tensions with Russia rising and an American candidate threatening to leave European countries to defend themselves, perhaps they're all preparing for the possibility of the real thing.

The correct answer to our "GPS Challenge" question is C; 1956 was the first time an Olympic Games was hosted outside North America or Europe. Melbourne, Australia hosted those games. The only two continents left that have not hosted Olympics are Africa and Antarctica. We might see Africa chosen in coming decades to host, but I doubt that the Olympic organizers are considering an Olympic Games with the penguins.

Thanks to all of you for being part of my program this week. I will see you next week.