PBS NewsHour full episode November 26, 2019

JUDY WOODRUFF: Good evening. I’m Judy Woodruff. On the “NewsHour” tonight: a bleak forecast. The United Nations issues a stark warning
of the action that must now be taken to mitigate the climate crisis. Then: the limits of power. A new court ruling declares the president’s
aides must testify before Congress, as the next public impeachment hearing is set. And the bidding will start at one euro — why
a shrinking Italian town is selling abandoned homes for the price of a cup of espresso. BERT VAN BELLINGEN, Belgian: In one year,
what we have done, me and my wife, it’s beautiful. If you’re waking up, and you see this view
in the morning… CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: No regrets. BERT VAN BELLINGEN: No regrets, never. JUDY WOODRUFF: All that and more on tonight’s
“PBS NewsHour.” (BREAK) JUDY WOODRUFF: The United Nations has released
a grim and alarming assessment about the impact of climate change. Even worse, it found that countries around
the world are not doing nearly enough right now to slow the damage before it becomes worse. JOHN CHRISTENSEN, Lead Author, United Nations
Emissions Gap Report: The probability of avoiding dangerous levels of global average temperature
increases is dwindling. If you look at the global emissions, they
are still going up. JUDY WOODRUFF: That’s according to a new U.N.
report. It found the planet will have to reduce carbon
emissions by 7.6 percent a year between 2020 and 2030. Instead, emissions have been increasing by
about 1.5 percent a year over the past decade. JOHN CHRISTENSEN: We had a little hope a couple
of years ago that the CO2 part of the emissions had basically been stable for a few years,
and we hoped that that indicated a stabilization. But it started to increase again, and it doesn’t
look too good. JUDY WOODRUFF: As part of the 2015 Paris climate
accord, nearly 200 countries, including the U.S., had vowed to take action to limit temperature
rise to between 1.5 degrees and 2 degrees Celsius, or about 2.7 to 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit. Beyond those levels, scientists warn the climate
will reach a dangerous tipping point. But the goal is slipping out of reach. Greenhouse gas emissions reached a record
level last year, the highest since pre-Industrial times. Many countries are not on track to meet the
goals of the Paris accord. And, under President Trump, the U.S. is withdrawing
from the Paris agreement, effective next year. INGER ANDERSEN, United Nations Environment
Program: Had we acted in 2010, we would have had to reduce our emissions by 3.3 percent
a year. Now, because of climate procrastination, which
we have essentially had during these 10 years, we are looking at a 7.6 percent reduction
every year. But the science tells us that we can do this. JUDY WOODRUFF: If serious action is not taken,
the U.N. warned that global average temperatures could rise as much as 7 degrees Fahrenheit
by the end of the century. The challenge ahead is enormous, and it comes
amid daunting estimates over the impact of what’s already happened. A recent study found that greenhouse gases’
warming effect on the planet has increased by 43 percent just since 1990. Let’s explore some of these questions with
a climate scientist. He is Radley Horton. He works at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
at Columbia University. Dr. Horton, welcome to the “NewsHour.” Thank you very much for being here. I want to ask you, first of all, this sounds
pretty dire, I mean, to say that we have got starting right now to reduce emissions by
over 7.5 percent a year, or we face catastrophe. Is it that dire? RADLEY HORTON, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory:
I believe it is that dire, when we think about the climate risks that we’re facing, Judy. In order to not blow through this 1.5-degree
Celsius warming target, just as you said, we need to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions
by on the order of 7 or 8 percent per year. By 2030, we have to have 50 percent less emissions
each year than we do today to avoid the worst impacts that we could see from climate change. JUDY WOODRUFF: Where does the fault lie here? We just — we heard one of the scientists
— it caught my ear. He said because of climate procrastination. Who has been procrastinating? RADLEY HORTON: Well, the short answer is just
about everybody. Really, to get to where we need to be, we
need to see much greater ambition. Especially, I think, the leadership has to
lie primarily with the large economies that historically have burned so many fossil fuels. And, remember, these fossil fuels stay in
the atmosphere for a very long time. So, we’re still experiencing today warming
and sea level rise from emissions, for example, by the United States, European Union for decades
past. So that’s the first place that you have to
look. And those are also the countries that have
benefited historically from their greenhouse gas emissions in terms of economic growth. So those are the countries we have the look
at first. But the short answer is, we have gotten ourselves
into such a pickle now by delaying — reducing our emissions that now every country in the
world really has to get on board with dramatically reducing our emissions. JUDY WOODRUFF: I’m asking because I heard
a panel discussion over the weekend where one of the experts said the U.S. can’t wait
for China and India, for example, to go first, because of their population. The U.S. has to go ahead and move on its own. So you’re saying everybody has got to move
right now? RADLEY HORTON: Everybody has to move, absolutely. Here in the U.S., I think, by not being more
ambitious, and indeed by pulling out of the protocol, other countries see that as a signal
that maybe they can afford to back off a little bit. So we need more ambition from everybody. One thing to keep in mind is even those countries
that made pledges for 2020, the only way this was going to work was if they then amplified
and made much more aggressive their emissions pledges beginning in 2020. So, what we’re actually seeing is many, not
all countries, failing to meet the emissions reduction pledges that they had said they
would get to by 2020. That sets the stage for us needing far more
ambitious reductions in our emissions over the coming decade. JUDY WOODRUFF: Do you believe it’s doable,
that this is actually — that this can be done? RADLEY HORTON: So here’s the paradox. Despite all the negative things we have been
talking about so far, in some ways, I think it’s more doable than ever, because I think
we’re starting to see some early signs of a mass mobilization. It’s still a small amount of gas emissions
averted, but when we look at powerful levers in society, they’re showing some signs of
activating around this issue. I’m thinking, for example, about youth movements,
people who are saying that they’re not going to accept the way things were done in the
past. When they think about the colleges they’re
going to go to, the jobs they want to have in the future, where they’re going the make
their investments, they are going to be picking industries that are focused on reducing emissions
and focused on thinking about how they’re going to be vulnerable to climate change. That could, I think, lead to a whole shift
of revenues in the future. That’s one example. We could also talk about what we have seen
in terms of renewable energy prices dropping faster than predicted, battery technology
starting to reach a price parity. We have already hit the point where renewables
are outcompeting fossil fuels such as coal just about everywhere. So we’re seeing signs of that mobilization. The question is, is it happening fast enough? JUDY WOODRUFF: And, just quickly, what are
some examples of the tough trade-offs that are going to have to be made? RADLEY HORTON: So, a few of the sectors that
are really, really challenging, we think about aviation-related emissions. Aviation emissions are growing roughly 6 percent
per year as people fly more. We do not have a viable substitute right now
for fossil fuels for aviation. Similarly, in heavy industry — think about
things like mining, steel smelting — those require fossil fuels. We don’t have solutions today. So there are no easy fixes there. In terms of other types of trade-off, even
where we see renewables reaching parity, there are going to be some existing entrenched interests
that could suffer in the short-term, but, for society, as a net gain, we see new jobs,
we see new areas of economic growth going forward. And, critically, if we quickly reduce our
emissions, we avoid or avert some of these catastrophic damages that we’re going to see
if we fail to adapt. If we don’t, for example, get emissions down,
get sea level rise to slow, think of the costs we’re going to be look at in terms of trying
the adapt, trying to build seawalls, having to retreat from vulnerable areas. Those costs exceed anything that greenhouse
gas emissions reductions could look like. JUDY WOODRUFF: And just finally, how much
of the tough choices that have to be made are really political choices? RADLEY HORTON: I think, fundamentally, this
is a political problem. You’re absolutely right. The technology already exists to get us quickly
towards where we need to be, those sectors I mentioned that are thorny notwithstanding. If we can quickly reduce our emissions in
renewables, for example, if we can get the electric grid off of fossil fuels, if we can
get the transportation sector off of fossil fuels, the land-based transportation, those
are things we could do today. If we do that aggressively, we buy ourselves
time for currently pie-in-the-sky technologies to maybe become viable. I’m talking here about things like directly
pulling carbon out of the atmosphere. We don’t have an ability to do that today,
but can we buy ourselves enough time with the right investments, and maybe in 10 or
20 years something like that will be feasible, allowing us to actually lower carbon concentrations? But, to be clear, we’re not there today, hence
the need for greater ambition across the board in society now. JUDY WOODRUFF: Well, it’s important to end
with at least a piece of an uplifting note here. Dr. Radley Horton, thank you very much, Columbia
University. Thank you. RADLEY HORTON: Thank you. JUDY WOODRUFF: In the day’s other news: The
U.S. House Judiciary Committee set December 4 to open hearings on possible articles of
impeachment. They will focus on whether President Trump
withheld military aid to Ukraine for his personal political benefit. House Democrats today released depositions
from interviews with White House budget official Mark Sandy and State Department official Philip
Reeker, and said their testimony bolsters the case against Mr. Trump. We will return to impeachment right after
the news summary. In Iraq, more violence today. Three bombings across Baghdad killed at least
five people and wounded more than a dozen. There was no immediate claim of responsibility. Those attacks followed clashes with security
forces that left three more demonstrators dead. Meanwhile, smoke filled the air across parts
of Southern Iraq, as protesters burned tires and occupied roads. The protesters are demanding an end to corruption,
to poor services and high unemployment. In the West Bank, several thousand Palestinians
staged a day of rage against the changed U.S. stance on Israeli settlements. The Trump administration announced last week
that it no longer considers the settlements illegal, reversing 40 years of U.S. policy. In Bethlehem today, protesters threw rocks
at Israeli soldiers, who fired back with tear gas. And, in Ramallah, Palestinian leaders condemned
Washington. MUSTAFA BARGHOUTI, Palestinian Politician:
This decision makes the American administration a participant with Israel in violating the
international law. Israeli settlements are illegal by international
law, by the decision of the International Court of Justice. And we are here to declare that we will struggle
for our rights, for our freedom. JUDY WOODRUFF: Israel has steadily expanded
the settlements that an international court has said are illegal and says that their fate
should be determined by negotiations. In Britain, charges of anti-Semitism are roiling
the election campaign. The nation’s chief rabbi claims in a newspaper
column that anti-Jewish racism is — quote — “sanctioned from the top of the opposition
Labor Party.” Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn has faced repeated
criticism on the issue. Today, he condemned anti-Semitism as vile
and wrong. A powerful earthquake in Albania has left
at least 21 people today and more than 600 injured. The tremor was centered just northwest of
Tirana, the country’s capital city. Rescue crews used excavators to search for
survivors amid the rubble. The quake shattered hotels and other buildings
in the port city of Durres. Back in this country, a sweeping new study
finds death rates for younger Americans, 25 to 34, have jumped nearly 30 percent this
decade. The report in “The Journal of the American
Medical Association” says that, in turn, has helped cut the nation’s overall life expectancy
for three straight years. It says causes range from opioids to obesity
to distracted driving from cell phones. A winter storm is wreaking havoc on U.S. holiday
travel from the Rockies to the Great Lakes. Parts of Colorado got two feet of snow overnight. Hundreds of flights were canceled at Denver
International Airport, stranding more than 1,100 travelers. This morning, in Denver, it was still snowing,
fouling the morning commute. And, as the storm headed east, Minnesota and
others braced for the blow. TODD KRAUSE, National Weather Service: So
we’re looking at eight to 12 inches of snow, winds maybe gusting to 30, 40 miles an hour. It’s going to be bad. The snow is going to come down hard. It’s going to come down fast. Visibility will be very, very poor during
the height of the snowstorm. JUDY WOODRUFF: The storm will arrive in the
Northeast by Thursday, and officials in New York say that it might ground the giant balloons
in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. A separate storm is hitting Northern California
and Oregon tonight, with high winds and waves and heavy snow. That storm could help contain a wildfire burning
out of control in southern California. Nearly 5,500 people were ordered out of its
path today, but most were being allowed back later. The fire erupted Monday, fanned by strong
winds, in a mountainous area above Santa Barbara. But, as of late today, no homes had been destroyed. An outbreak of E. coli from romaine lettuce
is getting worse. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
reports that there are now 67 cases in 19 states. They have been linked to romaine grown in
the Salinas, California, area. E. coli can cause severe gastrointestinal
illness and even death. And on Wall Street, stocks edged higher, taking
three major indexes to new record highs. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 55
points to close at 28121. The Nasdaq rose 15 points, and the S&P 500
added almost seven. Still to come on the “NewsHour”: how the courts
can shape the road ahead for impeachment; the rise and fall of WeWork — why the start-up’s
value dropped by $40 billion in a matter of weeks; own your own home in Italy for a single
euro, with a few strings attached; and much more. The process of impeaching a president is the
ultimate test of the balance of power in our government. Now the courts are weighing in on how the
White House must comply with Congress. The rulings could change what evidence and
witnesses appear in the next phase of the impeachment inquiry. We also have new details on the next public
hearing and another patch of witness transcripts released this evening. Here to break down the latest, our White House
correspondent, Yamiche Alcindor. So, hello, Yamiche. A lot to catch up with here. Just in the last hour, these transcripts released. These were the last witnesses to appear before
the House Intelligence Committee. Tell us who these individuals were. And what are we learning from their testimony? YAMICHE ALCINDOR: Well, our team was combing
through hundreds of pages of transcripts in the last hour. There’s so much to unpack. The first person that was — whose transcript
was released was Ambassador Philip Reeker. I want to tell you a little bit about who
he is. He’s U.S. acting assistant secretary for European
and Eurasian affairs. He served over under both Democratic and Republican
administrations. He didn’t appear in public hearings. And what’s important about him is that he
essentially confirms a lot of the things that we know were happening when it comes to Gordon
Sondland, the E.U. ambassador the European Union, ambassador being seen as an irregular
actor when it came to pressuring Ukraine to look at investigations into Joe Biden and
Hunter Biden in exchange for this $391 million in military aid. He also talked about acting Chief of Staff
Mick Mulvaney possibly being involved. He also says that Rudy Giuliani, the president’s
personal attorney, was playing a role there. I also want to note that he talks about four
big themes that the officials were looking at. And I want to read them. The first is attacks on Yovanovitch. That is Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch, who
testified publicly. The 2016 election and interference by Ukraine
to aid Hillary Clinton. Burisma and Biden. And Burisma was that company that Hunter Biden
was on the board of. And George Soros, a philanthropist and activist. Influence on the region through an NGO. So that was really what Philip Reeker was
talking about there. And he was really confirming a lot of things. There wasn’t a big — a lot of big red flags
there. Then the other person who testified is Mark
Sandy. I want to tell you a little bit about him. He’s a senior career official in the Office
of Management and Budget. He served under also — under both Democratic
and Republican administrations. He’s important because he’s from OMB. That’s what we call the Office of Management
and Budget. Both acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney and
the current — the current head of OMB, neither one of them have come to Congress to talk
about talk about anything that was going on in that office. So this is someone, a career official, who
said, I’m going to come to Congress and talk about this. And the main thing that we learned from his
— from him is that someone might have actually resigned in part because there was this hold
on military aid. So that was something completely new. We had not heard anything about that. The other thing to note is that he just talks
about the process of which, how the money was held up. So he doesn’t say anything new about kind
of what we knew. But he does say that people were concerned
that this hold might have been breaking the law. JUDY WOODRUFF: So, as we said, so much to
follow there, and I know that our team is going to continue to pore through these transcripts,
as are you. But, yesterday, later in the day, we had an
appeals — I’m sorry — a federal district judge ruled that Don McGahn, formerly President
Trump’s legal counsel, must testify before the Congress. Today — it’s not a surprise, but, today,
the White House went ahead and said, we are appealing. Where does all that stand right now? YAMICHE ALCINDOR: This was a major ruling
that really caught a lot of people by surprise, because Don McGahn, the White House — the
former White House counsel, was essentially being told, you have to go up to Congress
and testify, you have to comply with the subpoena. And I want to read to you a little bit about
what the judge said in her ruling. She said: “The primary takeaway from the past
250 years of recorded American history is that presidents are not kings.” And what the judge was saying there was that
the president can’t require people to have loyalty, and that when — either current officials
or former officials, they have the same constitutional rights to have free speech. Now, this has been appealed, and it might
be moving pretty quickly, or we might have to wait months to figure out what’s going
on here. What we do know is that the president of the
United States, President Trump, has been tweeting. He’s very angry about this ruling. And here’s what he said on Twitter. “I am fighting for future presidents and the
office of the president. Other than that, I would actually like people
to testify.” He went on to list a number of people that
he would want to testify, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, the former National Security
Adviser John Bolton. And he essentially is saying, I would love
these people to come and say that this is all a hoax and that actually I did everything
very right. But what the president says is that this would
compromise future presidencies, and that essentially people who work for me should be able to not
be forced to tell him — to tell Congress what we talked about. JUDY WOODRUFF: So, Yamiche, just quickly,
separately from all this, Supreme Court order affecting the accounting firm that does work
for President Trump, tell us quickly about that. YAMICHE ALCINDOR: So, quickly, the Supreme
Court is essentially saying that they’re blocking temporarily the House trying to get financial
records for President Trump. He has not released his tax returns, so this
really goes down to his personal attorney Michael Cohen telling Congress that the president
has sometimes inflated his earnings. So the House wants to essentially get to the
bottom of that. So we’re going to have to see. It might go all the way to the Supreme Court,
but there are going to be appeals moving through the courts. JUDY WOODRUFF: And finally, in terms of what’s
next, the Judiciary Committee has now announced what it’s doing. YAMICHE ALCINDOR: The big news today was that
the House Judiciary Committee announced its last — its first formal public hearing in
the impeachment inquiry. It is going to be on December 4. So everyone should mark their calendars. It’s not going to be as newsy or as — I would
say, as surprising as what we saw with Fiona Hill and other people who came to testify
publicly, because we’re not going to have current and former officials coming and saying
what they heard the president was doing. Instead, they’re going to be having constitutional
experts, maybe legal experts talking about how impeachment works, talking about what
high crimes and misdemeanors are. So it’s not going to be the same as what we
saw in the House Intel Committee. But it’s still going to be important, because
the president can now bring his attorneys and cross-examine witnesses. And that means that they could start to look
at other public hearings and say, well, this person said this. What do you think about that? So there could still be a little bit of drama,
but it’s going to be much different than what we saw last week. JUDY WOODRUFF: Next step in the impeachment
process. YAMICHE ALCINDOR: Yes. JUDY WOODRUFF: Yamiche Alcindor, thank you. YAMICHE ALCINDOR: Thanks. JUDY WOODRUFF: This has been a sobering year
for some of Silicon Valley’s highest-flying start-up companies, some of which have been
brought down to earth. The Wall Street Journal estimated today that
some of the most prominent start-ups have lost $100 billion in market value, one of
the biggest, WeWork. John Yang looks at what went wrong. JOHN YANG: Judy, WeWork set out to revolutionize
the workplace, leasing offices, fixing them up, and then subletting them as shared spaces. At the beginning of this year, it was the
single biggest office tenant in London, New York and Washington. But since January, WeWork’s valuation has
plunged from $47 billion to $7 billion. Last week, the company said it was laying
off 2,400 employees. That’s nearly a fifth of its global work force. The announcement was delayed until the company
raised the cash it needed for severance payments. That was after co-founder Adam Neumann was
bought out for more than $1 billion and given a four-year $185 million consulting contract. Peter Eavis of The New York Times has been
covering this story. He joins us from the paper’s newsroom in New
York. Peter, thanks so much for being with us. Fundamentally, what was the problem? What happened? Why did $40 billion go away? PETER EAVIS, The New York Times: That $47
billion valuation was the result of WeWork’s biggest backer, SoftBank, pouring in billions
of dollars into the company. That then set off an enormous expansion across
the globe that left the company with huge losses. And when they — when WeWork came to do its
IPO, and everybody saw how much it was losing, how it was draining cash so quickly, they
balked, and the IPO had to be called off. JOHN YANG: So, tell us quickly, who is SoftBank,
and who was running it, and why is it important? PETER EAVIS: SoftBank is a Japanese conglomerate. It’s headed by a legendary investor called
Masayoshi Son. And he gained his reputation for making a
very successful bet on the Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba. He’s made other successful investments as
well. And he’s used his reputation and the gains
he’s made over the years to invest in a lot of young companies recently, one of which
was WeWork. But he’s also put a lot of money into others. And not all of them are doing particularly
well. JOHN YANG: And his decision to invest in WeWork
— his initial investment — was $4.4 billion, came after a very brief meeting with the co-founder,
Adam Neumann. PETER EAVIS: Correct. I mean, that investment scaled up to as much
as $10.5 billion. He was enthralled by Mr. Neumann’s vision. He shared this idea — Masayoshi Son shared
this idea that a shared space could somehow revolutionize the workplace and was happy
to put in the billions, and apparently even said that Mr. Neumann should be even crazier
than he thought he should. JOHN YANG: You say he was enthralled by Mr.
Neumann. Let’s give the viewers an idea of Mr. Neumann. We are going to play a bite of him selling
WeWork to a group of U.S. mayors. ADAM NEUMANN, Co-Founder, WeWork: If you bring
us in for 10 locations, we will create 200,000 jobs other the next 10 years. And it can go bigger and bigger. And we won’t just bring you jobs. We will bring a place to live. We will bring education. And — and this is important — we will bring
corporate America. JOHN YANG: So, we get a sense of charisma,
his energy, his — the zeal he brought to these things. Tell us more about Adam Neumann. PETER EAVIS: He was raised on a kibbutz. He apparently came from an unhappy home. He talks about that. He served time in the Israeli military. He went to Baruch. He teamed up with a guy from — who grew up
on a commune, I think, in Oregon, and they founded WeWork. And they wanted to create, you know, a company
that they said ultimately would elevate the world’s consciousness. They — I don’t know to the degree it was
sincere, but they said they wanted to create a place that would revolutionize the workplace
and bring people together and spark creativity and create entrepreneurship. JOHN YANG: And it’s not just — I mean, what
he was doing was subletting office space, but he sold it, as you say, as a way to build
a community, to change the nature of communities? PETER EAVIS: Correct. And you will still find a lot of people who
are in WeWork spaces, particularly those early on, who still believe in this vision. It’s a catchy one. I can see how it caught on, especially in
the dark days after the financial crisis, when WeWork was formed. There were people looking for work. They went to these shared spaces. They dreamt up ideas for new businesses, start-ups. And that was the pitch. Of course, you know, we ultimately saw just
how hollow it was, but you can see how it had some attraction. JOHN YANG: This is, of course, one of the
great crashes in American business. Is there a moral to this story? PETER EAVIS: I think there is. I think that there’s a good moral and there’s
a bad moral. I think bad moral is the one that — made
one somewhat pessimistic, is that so many people fell for this. There were people on Wall Street that wanted
to sell this company at over $47 billion, maybe as much as $60 billion. But on the other hand, there was — as soon
as these numbers went out into the public, nobody wanted to buy this company. It was seen to be a risky proposition, and
the IPO failed. So, you know, people were wise to it. They saw through it. JOHN YANG: Peter Eavis of The New York Times,
thanks so much for being with us. PETER EAVIS: Thank you. JUDY WOODRUFF: Did you ever dream of owning
your own vacation getaway in Italy? Well, the cost usually makes people think
twice at least. But now, in some parts of Sicily, you can
buy your own home for just one euro, or little more than a dollar. That’s because the homes for sale have been
abandoned, and the towns there risk vanishing if new owners don’t move in soon. Special correspondent Christopher Livesay
went to see just what kind of home you can buy for less than the price of a cup of coffee. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: In the Sicilian town
of Gangi, it seems like little has changed since the Middle Ages. Throngs have turned out on this day to celebrate
the annual Festival of St. Francis. But many in the crowd are only tourists or
actors. And once the festivities finish, and everyone
leaves, the town looks like this, empty, at least down many streets. And it’s been getting worse for decades. FRANCESCO MIGLIAZZO, Mayor of Gangi, Sicily
(through translator): of Consider that, in 1951, Gangi had 13,000 inhabitants. Today, there are fewer than 7,000. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: Francesco Migliazzo is
the mayor of Gangi. He tells me that the same things that make
his town so picturesque, from its narrow streets to its isolation from noisy cities, have also
made it inconvenient for locals, who’ve been steadily leaving in search of work in those
noisy cities since after World War II. In Sicily and across Italy, there are thousands
of towns like it, risking extinction in the coming decades. The mayor says Gangi was desperate. FRANCESCO MIGLIAZZO (through translator):
Homes were being abandoned and left to fall apart. We needed a way to incentivize people to live
in the historic center in order to save our town. So we started selling homes for only one euro. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: So, hold on. You can buy a house in this town for only
one euro? FRANCESCO MIGLIAZZO (through translator):
Absolutely, for the price of a cup of coffee. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: Sound too good to be
true? To see for myself, I meet Ignazio Tuzzolino,
a retired banker who bought a vacation home for less money than he will spend repainting
his mirrors. IGNAZIO TUZZOLINO, Italy (through translator):
I have got to get a smaller car. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: So this is it? Wow. This is amazing. Of course, he didn’t find it this way. Part of the one-euro deal requires that buyers
renovate their home within three years of purchase. So the original design was this way. You just cleaned it up and made it habitable? IGNAZIO TUZZOLINO: Exactly. Exactly. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: Wow. Amazing. Beautiful. With some slight modifications. OK. So you took the shutters off the old window,
and it became a cupboard. IGNAZIO TUZZOLINO (through translator): We
managed to save that sink too. It’s at least one century old. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: They don’t make them
this way anymore. Tuzzolino says he spent 200,000 euros, about
$220,000 right now, to makeover all 3,200 square feet, inside and out. IGNAZIO TUZZOLINO (through translator): That’s
money that went into the local economy to pay for materials and wages for workers. Now multiply that by all the other homes like
mine. So far there’s been roughly 120 homes sold
as a part of this program. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: Perched in the shadow
of Mt. Etna, Gangi’s allure has been contagious. So has its marketing strategy. It’s been 10 years since it began selling
homes for one euro, and now other towns in Sicily have caught on, towns like Mussomeli. With a population of 10,000, it’s currently
selling nearly 400 homes for just over a dollar each. Houses are cheap, come with stunning views,
and 300 days of sunshine a year. But, buyer beware, there are hidden costs
and a lot of assembly required, some more than others. To start the house hunt, I book a visit with
a realtor. Cinzia Sorce shows me just what you can get
for one euro. CINZIA SORCE, Realtor (through translator):
As you can see, this floor is divided between the living room and bedroom, which is very
big. You have got to be careful about the floors,
which are very fragile. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: Wait, wait. so you can’t walk over here? CINZIA SORCE (through translator): No. Avoid it. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: It could collapse? CINZIA SORCE (through translator): Yes, it’s
unsafe. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: OK. For better or worse, one euro also gets you
whatever you find inside these dusty 2,000 square feet. CINZIA SORCE (through translator): Whoever
buys the house then has to empty it out in order to rebuild it. That means getting rid of furniture, getting
rid of rubble and debris. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: A lot of surprises, yes. CINZIA SORCE (through translator): Yes. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: But don’t be surprised
by the extent of the overhaul. In this house and most others, there’s little
you won’t have to fix. CINZIA SORCE (through translator): Everything,
new pipes, new electric, gas. Not a single thing is up to code. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: So how much would I have
to invest in this house if I wanted to make it livable again? CINZIA SORCE (through translator): You will
have to invest a lot, absolutely. It’s impossible to say. At least 20,000 euros. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: Still, not a bad deal
for idyllic views in your own Sicilian hideaway. And hidden, it is, not to mention hard to
get to. The nearest major airport is more than two
hours away by car on highways that have seen better days. If tourists are going to want to move here,
they’re going to have to put up with roads, which range from the good, to the bad, and
the utterly nonexistent. And most of these homebuyers are, after all,
tourists, here for just a few months out of the year. Most aren’t raising children, the only real
long-term solution to the population decline, according to demographers. But among the hundreds of people who have
already invested their euro in Sicily, some are starting new families. BERT VAN BELLINGEN, Belgian: Hello. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: So nice to meet you. BERT VAN BELLINGEN: Nice to meet you. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: One year ago, Belgians
Bert Van Bellingen and Nina Smets became the first people to buy abandoned real estate
in Mussomeli. This is original, these tiles? BERT VAN BELLINGEN: This is original. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: But you rebuilt it? BERT VAN BELLINGEN: I rebuilt it. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: Lovely. BERT VAN BELLINGEN: It’s about 300 years old. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: Now it feels so much
like home, they got married here just a few days before we met. Over here at the church? BERT VAN BELLINGEN: Over there at the church. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: Oh, wow. Since they moved here, more than 100 other
homes have been sold in Mussomeli to people from across Europe, Asia, and the United States. Do you regret anything about having moved
here? BERT VAN BELLINGEN: No. It’s worth. It’s worth. If you see what the finish is, in one year,
what we have done, me and my wife, it’s beautiful. If you’re waking up, and you see this view
in the morning… CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: No regrets. BERT VAN BELLINGEN: No regrets, never, no. CHRISTOPHER LIVESAY: For the “PBS NewsHour,”
I’m Christopher Livesay in Mussomeli, Sicily. JUDY WOODRUFF: Tomorrow night, PBS will air
an hour-long special report from our “NewsHour” team. “The Plastic Problem” examines how our global
dependency on plastic has created one of the biggest environmental threats to our planet. Amna Nawaz hosts the hour. And she joins me here now. So, Amna, hello. This was an enormous undertaking. You all spent, what, a year working on this. Tell us a little bit about what’s in it? AMNA NAWAZ: That’s right. I was part of this reporting team from the
“NewsHour,” along with John Yang, Paul Solman and Jeffrey Brown. And we were led by our producer Lorna Baldwin. Over the last year, we have dug into more
about the reporting from the series last year, expanded that reporting across the globe. And we wanted to try to understand how this
one material that we all rely on so much every day is now irreversibly hurting our planet
in ways most of us don’t even understand. Most people don’t know, in the 70 years plastic
has been around, we have made nine billion tons of that, and that most of that is still
around in some form. In fact, we should point out, some of the
images people may see this documentary are a little disturbing. And we found, in some places, the plastic
is ended up in places we don’t expect it to. Take a look at this. MAN: Oh, my God. AMNA NAWAZ: In 2015, a Marine biologist’s
went video went viral documenting the painful process as she removed a plastic straw stuck
in a sea turtle’s nose. WOMAN: Oh, man. AMNA NAWAZ: In the Philippines, a whale washed
ashore in 2019 with nearly 90 pounds of plastic in its stomach. Seals are getting caught in fishing nets made
out of plastic. They’re called ghost nets, abandoned by the
fishing industry. And an estimated 640,000 tons of them are
floating in the ocean. That’s 10 percent of all known ocean plastic. Judy, we should point out experts now believe
that, by the year 2050, there will be more plastic than fish in the oceans. JUDY WOODRUFF: Oh, my gosh. That’s hard to comprehend. So it does sound as if we’re just now coming
to an understanding of how serious the problem is. What did you learn about that? AMNA NAWAZ: Yes, we really tried to approach
this from every angle, not just looking at the history of how we got here and why the
problem is so big, but also looking at how the people who make the plastic, the people
who package everything up to sell it to us, how they see the problem. So we went to two of the biggest producers
in the world. We went to Coca-Cola and to Unilever. And we asked them what they’re doing to help
fix this problem they helped to create. We also looked at the role recycling plays. A lot of people think that they roll the blue
bins out to the curb at the end of the week, and that’s it. We followed that trail of recyclable goods
thousands of miles to see where that plastic is ending up. We talked to scientists who are looking at
the fish that eat the plastic to ask, now are humans eating plastic because we eat the
fish? And we also talked to the innovators, the
people who are taking on new and creative approaches to try to address this problem. Judy, some of those approaches would actually
surprise a lot of people. JUDY WOODRUFF: Well, and, in fact, a lot of
— you talk to a lot of people, and they say they want to know, what can be done about
it and what can I, as an individual, do about it? AMNA NAWAZ: That’s right. I’m sure a lot of people have heard about
campaigns to end plastic straw use or bans on plastic bags. We actually went to some cities and communities
where those are in place to see, what has actually been the impact? Does it make a difference at all? Look, it took every part of society to get
us where we are, to make the problem as big as it is today. So, despite our efforts to reuse and reduce,
we’re not yet making a dent. We use and make more plastic today than we
ever have before. But experts say, look, if you want to make
a difference today, start small and scale up. So we actually visited with one family in
Canada who is trying to do just that. Take a look. So, all reusable cups now. WOMAN: All reusable cups. AMNA NAWAZ: A cloth coffee filter? WOMAN: Yes. And we get our coffees in a jar. Reusable snack bags. We have got silicone. AMNA NAWAZ: OK. What do you replace this with? WOMAN: We are replacing it with beeswax wax. It covers food so that it doesn’t dry out. AMNA NAWAZ: How on earth do you get rid of
plastic in your bathroom? WOMAN: Yes. We’re using a toothpaste in a jar. AMNA NAWAZ: And it’s a glass jar. WOMAN: And it’s a glass jar. AMNA NAWAZ: Right? You can wash it out, reuse it. WOMAN: Got hand soap. So now, instead of the plastic pumps, we have
got a glass jar. AMNA NAWAZ: So you have made little changes
everywhere you can. WOMAN: Little changes, yes. AMNA NAWAZ: And, Judy, that’s what people
say will make a difference right now if you want to try something, lots of little changes. I actually tried this, testing out my own
grocery shop. It’s not as hard as it looks, but especially
to keep in mind, if folks go out Thanksgiving shopping, you can start the make little changes
today. JUDY WOODRUFF: It does look challenging, though,
to remember to do those little things. AMNA NAWAZ: That’s right. (CROSSTALK) JUDY WOODRUFF: Make a difference. All right, the program “The Plastic Problem”
airs tomorrow night on PBS. It’s at 10:00 Eastern, 9:00 Central. Thank you, Amna. AMNA NAWAZ: Thanks, Judy. JUDY WOODRUFF: Many of our viewers known Karine
Jean-Pierre as a Democratic strategist and one of our analysts. In her book “Moving Forward,” she shares her
personal story about growing up the eldest child of Haitian immigrants. I sat down with her recently and began by
asking her how her upbringing shaped her life. KARINE JEAN-PIERRE, Author, “Moving Forward”:
That immigrant upbringing, growing up in New York, it shaped everything and anything that
I’m about, right, who — the person that I sit here — that sits before you, my hard
work, my perseverance, the way I meet, see people and talk to people. It has made me who I am, the type of mother
that I have become, partner that I have become. My parents, Haitian immigrants, it’s like
the immigrant experience. They came here for the American dream that
in many ways eluded them. They still live check to check, but in their
eyes, because I made it to the White House, because their daughter went to Columbia, they
have received it. So it’s been interesting watching their experience. They have been knocked down , and they get
back up. And so, when I’m knocked down, I get back
up. Some that experience with them growing up
has really made me so much stronger. JUDY WOODRUFF: Your family is threaded through
so much of this book, your father a taxi driver, but trained as an engineer. KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: Yes. Exactly. Yes. JUDY WOODRUFF: And your mother had been a
nanny and then a caregiver. KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: Yes, a caregiver. JUDY WOODRUFF: Both of them very involved
in you life. High expectations for you. KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: High expectations. And it was overwhelming. Being the oldest of three siblings, I had
to take care of my siblings while my parents were working six, seven days a week. I had to feed them. And I’m 8 years older than my sister, 10 years
older than my brother, so I was pretty young when they were toddlers, and make sure their
food was cooked, make sure diapers were changed, because they had to provide for the family. And all of that heaviness, all of that responsibility
led to some dark times as well. JUDY WOODRUFF: You write about secrets in
the family. There were things your family didn’t talk
about. KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: Yes. Yes. JUDY WOODRUFF: You write, Karine, about your
own struggles at points in your life with emotional difficulties, your own sexuality,
coming out as a gay woman, and how your parents responded to that. KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: Yes. Yes. So one of the things — there are so many
things that I bring up that you just laid out perfectly, but one of them is mental health. And one of the reasons I talk about it in
the book is because there is a stigma connected to mental health. And people don’t want to talk about what they
go through when they are in dark times and they don’t know how to get out of it. And because of the pressures of me growing
up, and just feeling like an outsider all through my growing up, my young — young days,
there was a time where I attempted to take my life. I attempted suicide. And it was a dark, dark time in my life, clearly. And so I put that in the book. I put it in the book because I want to help
people. I want anybody who has ever felt that way
to feel like there is a way out and to know there is a way out. JUDY WOODRUFF: What do you think got you through
that? KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: I think back again — even
though there was pressures from the community, pressures from my family that I put on to
myself really in many ways, I think because, growing up, my parents always instilled in
me that I was going to survive, that I was going to be a star, that I was going to do
anything that I wanted, somehow, somewhere, that was still there, even though I was so
down and out. JUDY WOODRUFF: And you kept pushing through. You finished college. You went on to graduate school, ended up going
into politics. KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: Yes. Yes. JUDY WOODRUFF: Why do you think you did? KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: I think I just persevered. I think it’s the being knocked down and going
back up again. I now teach at Columbia University, an Ivy
League school. I have to mentor and teach young people and
help them get through their lives. And I have a 5-year-old. My partner and I have this beautiful 5-year-old
daughter. And I think that helps me persevere, and that
helps me understand, what kind of world do I want to leave for her? JUDY WOODRUFF: You talk about advice to young
people, that they don’t have to work at the White House, which you said, or the state
capitol. KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: Yes. Yes. Yes. JUDY WOODRUFF: That they can make a difference
in politics and policy at the grassroots level. KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: Yes. I believe that they can. The way they’re going to make that change
is if their voice is in the fight, if they step into the political arena, whether it’s
working on that issue, or deciding to run themselves, or working for a candidate that
they really believe in and want them to decide their future. And I tell that in my book. And I lay out the blueprint and the playbook
for doing that. JUDY WOODRUFF: In fact, there is a point of
the book where you have not only worked for President Obama. You worked for Anthony Weiner. You worked for John Edwards. KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: I did. JUDY WOODRUFF: Politicians who didn’t exactly
end up in the right place. KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: Yes. JUDY WOODRUFF: And it’s an interesting lesson
you learned, isn’t it? KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: Yes. And I say in my book, don’t put people up
on a pedestal. Right? Care about the issues, for sure, but don’t
put people on a pedestal, because people are flawed. We are flawed individuals. And I also tell young people, if you do end
up working for a flawed candidate, make sure you — you got to make sure you take care
of your career as well. Right? You have to make sure that you navigate through
those waters, so that you can continue your career. And so it’s just a fine line the walk on,
but you have to continue sticking with what you believe in. JUDY WOODRUFF: You are political strategist. You’re a Democratic political strategist. KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: Yes. Yes. JUDY WOODRUFF: So I’m not going to let you
get away without asking you, how do you believe Democrats can defeat Donald Trump next year? Do you think they have a good chance of winning? KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: I do. And the reason why is because we have been
energized the past three years, we, the Democratic base, the resistance, if you want to call
it that, and we have shown up in races in big ways, in historical numbers. And there is an energy there. When you look at the polling and it says,
what do Democrats want the most, they want somebody who can beat Donald Trump. That’s the thing. Whoever is the nominee has to understand it’s
going to take a movement to beat Donald Trump. It’s not going to be easy, but we can do it. You got to get young people out. You got to get people of color, black voters,
black women who have been the backbone of the Democratic Party. You have to get women, educated white women
out. You have to get everybody. You have to get that coalition and people
who don’t normally vote or don’t think their vote matters. You have got to convince them to get them
out. It’s going to take a movement. JUDY WOODRUFF: The book is “Moving Forward:
A Story of Hope, Hard Work, and the Promise of America.” Thank you. KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: Thank you. JUDY WOODRUFF: What objects give meaning to
our lives? KPBS reporter Maya Trabulsi talked to an artist
who gathered things special to San Diego residents and preserved them as 3-D laser art. It is part of our arts and culture series,
Canvas. MAYA TRABULSI: When you walk into the New
Americans Museum, you may wonder where the art exhibit is. But if you look closer, you will see a pen
knife, a bell, a figurine. And if you look even closer, you will learn
about the stories embedded in these objects. KERIANNE QUICK, Artist, New Americans Museum:
Each one of these individual stories come together as a chorus, in my view. MAYA TRABULSI: Kerianne Quick is the artist
in residence here. KERIANNE QUICK: When you start with something
specific, something completely surprising can unfold, something you never would have
access to otherwise. MAYA TRABULSI: Something specific like a typewriter? KERIANNE QUICK: Like a typewriter, yes, yes. MAYA TRABULSI: For her exhibit called A Portrait
of People in Motion, she spent over a year gathering treasured objects from San Diego
residents. But, more importantly, she gathered the stories
that accompany them. KERIANNE QUICK: If we can feel some of that
emotion about what it’s like to try to figure out how to live in a new place, then maybe
we can empathize with those who are experiencing the most extreme version of that discomfort. MAYA TRABULSI: The item is scanned, and then
3-D printed or laser engraved to leave behind what Kerianne calls a ghost, transparent,
with faint detail, yet still teeming with the story of how it came to San Diego. KERIANNE QUICK: The story is the art piece. The objects that are represented here, they’re
just a way in to those stories. And, yes, the objects are transparent. And that’s on purpose. MAYA TRABULSI: Some objects are made of clear
resin. Others are acrylic. KERIANNE QUICK: The light as it projects through
the laser-engraved surface, it creates a shadow where the writing almost becomes legible. MAYA TRABULSI: At first glance, they are hard
to see against the stark white wooden furniture designed to look like furniture in a home. But looking closer is exactly what Kerianne
wants you to do. KERIANNE QUICK: And when they look closer,
and they wonder what that — what the thing is that they’re looking at, they are given
access to the story that is behind it. MAYA TRABULSI: Kerianne also recorded the
oral histories of each piece. They can be played by dialing a number on
your phone and then the corresponding number of the item. MAN: My object is a jacket that, when I was
in Korea during the Korean War, this was a jacket that I, in effect, stole from the Army. WOMAN: From 1971 to now, we have lived many
places, and the recipes have gone with me. WOMAN: My object is a little tiny Inuit figure
that was given to me in 1945 by my first boyfriend, who was stationed in the Aleutians. WOMAN: And I think just seeing it makes me
feel at home, because I grew up seeing it. KERIANNE QUICK: The crux of what I’m trying
to do here is to help people, people in general, feel something that might make them treat
their neighbor a little bit better. MAYA TRABULSI: And as the sound of plane engines
roar above this little museum under the San Diego flight path, it offers a subtle reminder
that we are all people in motion. For the “PBS NewsHour,” I’m Maya Trabulsi
in San Diego. JUDY WOODRUFF: Before leaving the White House
this afternoon, President Trump handed out a pair of pardons. And the recipients gobbled up the spotlight. Amna Nawaz is back with how this Thanksgiving
tradition began. DONALD TRUMP, President of the United States:
I hereby grant you a full and complete pardon. (APPLAUSE) AMNA NAWAZ: Bread and Butter won’t be on the
Thanksgiving menu this year, thanks to President Trump. The commander in chief spared Butter in a
Rose Garden ceremony, saving the bird from a crummy situation. His wingman Bread also received a presidential
pardon. This year’s fortunate birds, who hail from
North Carolina, became instant celebrities this week, after checking in at the
Willard International Hotel in Washington, D.C. This is Bread. He weighs in at 45 pounds, and, according
to the White House, likes bluegrass music and college basketball. His heftier counterpart, Butter, weighs 47
pounds. He enjoys sweet potato fries and NASCAR. DONALD TRUMP: Today, we come together to honor
the beautiful feathered friend, the noble turkey. AMNA NAWAZ: This White House tradition has
happened every November for the past quarter-century. But there are some, let’s say, ruffled feathers
about how it all got started. BILL CLINTON, Former President of the United
States: President Truman was the first president to pardon a turkey. AMNA NAWAZ: But that’s not true. In fact, the Truman Presidential Library says:
“Truman sometimes indicated to reporters that the turkeys he received were destined for
the family dinner table.” Truman was actually the first president to
receive a turkey from the National Turkey Federation 71 years ago. So, who was the first president to pardon
a turkey? Lincoln, it appears, was the first on record. But it was a Christmas turkey that his son
had taken a liking to. In 1963, President John F. Kennedy was the
first to pardon a Thanksgiving turkey. Despite a sign hanging around the turkey’s
neck that read — quote — “Good eating, Mr. President,” Kennedy sent the bird back to
the farm. Richard Nixon also gave the birds a reprieve,
sending his turkeys to a nearby petting zoo. Ronald Reagan was the first to use the word
pardon when he was talking turkey in 1987. The turkey pardoning became formalized in
1989, with President George H.W. Bush. GEORGE H.W. BUSH, Former President of the United States:
Let me assure you, and this fine tom turkey that he will not end up on anyone’s dinner
table. Not this guy. BILL CLINTON: This is the eighth I have had
the privilege to meet and set free in the Rose Garden. AMNA NAWAZ: In 2000, Jerry the turkey from
Wisconsin sported a White House pass around his neck. Four years later, the Bush administration
also had some fun. The names of that year’s turkeys were chosen
in a vote on the White House Web site. GEORGE W. BUSH, Former President of the United
States: This is an election year, and Biscuits had to earn his spot at the White House. Biscuits and his running mate, Gravy, prevailed
over the ticket of Patience and Fortitude. AMNA NAWAZ: When President Obama pardoned
his final turkeys, he said that he wouldn’t stop, even after leaving office. BARACK OBAMA, Former President of the United
States: We are going to do this every year from now on. (LAUGHTER) BARACK OBAMA: No cameras, just us, every year. No way I am cutting this habit cold turkey. AMNA NAWAZ: President Trump, for his part,
couldn’t resist bringing politics into today’s ceremony. DONALD TRUMP: They have already received subpoenas
to appear in Adam Schiff’s basement on Thursday. AMNA NAWAZ: Bread and Butter will now be sent
to Blacksburg, Virginia, to live out the rest of their days at Virginia Tech, home of the
HokieBird. For the “PBS NewsHour,” I’m Amna Nawaz. JUDY WOODRUFF: As far as I’m concerned, they
have all gone to the birds. And that’s the “NewsHour” for tonight. I’m Judy Woodruff. For all of us at the “PBS NewsHour,” thank
you, and we’ll see you soon.

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