NER Washington forum; Vice President Hubert Humphrey
And the goal of the United States. Is the expansion of opportunity. It is beyond mancipation. Human Con. Emancipation from fear bigotry and discrimination. Emancipation from illiteracy and disease and hopelessness. The pro-America producer of Mary. The voice you just heard was that of the Honorable Hubert H Humphrey vice president of the United States and our guest this week on the NE our Washington forum a weekly program concerned with the significant issues before us as a nation. This week a discussion between the vice president and a group of British students recorded during Mr. Humphries recent visit to London and made available specially for the NE our Washington forum. Through the courtesy of the British Broadcasting Company I am an E.R. public affairs director Bill Greenwood. It's my pleasure to now introduce British news correspondent Robert day. The moderator for this discussion. Never
before broadcast in the United States. Mr. Hubert Humphrey was a senator from Minnesota for 16 years until President Johnson chose him for the number two plates on the Democratic ticket in the 1964 election campaign. Did you ask him whatever questions they wish group of students who come from many universities in this country. I didn't think that claim to represent the entire youth of the British nation but many of them almost all of them in fact Idaho have held elected positions as student officers or officials of political plops and between them they cover a pretty wide variety of political opinions. The first question then to the vice president if you please. They just went over there and it was the vice president we're told that being vice president of the United States is not playing second fiddle without being given the bird in view of the fact that many of your political rivals get much more public than to do you think this is not true. Well I consider being vice president the United States a man on earth. It's a responsibility in a sense it's privilege. It does not
permit you to be the first violinist nor are you the conductor of the orchestra. But let me say you're in on making the music and the main thing to do is not to make hit too many sour notes. I believe that about covers the topic just laid it down for me. Could you tell me when. It's OK to keep two. Yes. The office of the vice president has developed a great deal over the years. In the beginning the primary responsibility was the presiding officer of the Senate and then just sort of waiting around in the you know in the sidelines to see what happened. That John Adams once said that it is either nothing or everything. Since that time since our second president there's been a bit of feel that makes it a little of something and quite something in some areas. I'm a member of the president's cabinet a member of the National Security Council the chairman of the space consulate coordinates all of the work of our government in the field of Space and Aeronautics the chairman of the marine
resources and engineering consul that's an oceanography and even a regent of the Smithsonian Institution. And then I have a number of ad hoc. Temporary assignments from the president. For example right now and the chairman of the president's youth council coordinating all of the activities of our government and that relate to youth all of the educational activities the training activities our summer employment programs and the travel program and a few other things that keep me rather busy plus doing a bit of speaking around the country. Another one not very impressed by that list of. If you can read and preside over the Senate I would much rather forget that for a minute and that is no small task. OK any other questions about the political situation in America which we've got to have a good run up of Mr. Vice President. And there's been some speculation about the next vice president of the United States who President Johnson would choose as his next running and in this country the press has been speculating on the Kennedy Jonesy split. Can you give us your version of the
split off of the senator's visit to Europe. Well I look upon Senator Kennedy as a very able United States senator. He has a different point of view on some subjects that I'm very president may hold. But in our political system we do not have what you call a rigid party discipline. When I served a senator even though we had a Democratic president storing some of that time I did not have 100 percent voting record with the administration. I believe that you know Senator Kennedy when he says that he will support the President Johnson in 1968 and I believe the implicitly when he says he will support Vice President Humphrey. This device but if no one behind you have no memory of who the vice president on a slightly different topic the United States government completely satisfied with the pull out of the one commission under the present committee and if not just intend to hold off on the inquiry we considered the Warren Commission to be a reputable responsible report. Remember that the commission's name indicates the quality of the commission the chief
justice of the United States Mr. Earl Warren a very distinguished man was the chairman of that commission. I doubt that he would attach his name to any report that did not have responsible evidence to verify it. I can say that the whole commission was made up of the highly respected American citizens we see no need to reopen any inquiry in the main if any new evidence comes to the attention of the government that requires a reopening of course that's another matter. But the Warren Commission report stands as an official document an official policy of our government. To get to this. Joint. For going on the move in the United States. Which ranks like you happens on the question. Point of view the world. Like a conspiracy for sure conditions into the night. I doubt there's any new evidence as a matter of fact. The attorney general has indicated that those persons that are being presently listed as offering new evidence that that evidence had all been very carefully screened
before by the appropriate authorities in the government of the United States. May I suggest to you that we were very anxious to get at the truth of the assassination of a very great and beloved person and that there would be no no need or any desire on the part of any responsible official the United States to cover up anything. And the chief justice of the United States has been a courageous man all of his life. He's not of the same political party as the president of the United States or the late president of the United States and if Earl Warren puts his name to a report I believe for a war and the chief justice of somebody I know wanted to ask a question. Several of you about the situation in Alabama and they do go in there with a. Dangerous wrinkle in a civil. Right. How do you view the crazy conservatism of American politics and especially having the finance of an influx to the federal courts basic education in Alabama. Now I take the latter part of your question first. First may I thank you for your compliment.
And reference to Governor Wallace of Alabama. We've had other instances in the past few years where governors have momentarily before their legislatures uttered words of defiance only to come around a little bit later to recognize that the Federal Union is intact that the Constitution of the United States is the supreme law and that the orders of the courts of the United States must be obeyed. I have no doubt at all but what. Alabama has one of the 50 states and a very fine state. Will will be faithful to the Constitution. Now in reference to the political environment in the United States it is not conservative as a matter of fact I must say that it is the most liberal period of American political history. We have made. We have made more advance and by this I think this might be a moment to just share of that the thoughts with you on this. We have made more
social advance in the last few years and we've made in the preceding 20 years we have taken up where the New Deal left off and gone far far beyond in the field of race relations no country on the face of the earth is making the progress that the United States is making in race relations we have problems but we have opened up vast new areas of opportunity for people long denied opportunity. And remember that our racial problem is I'm some dimension. There are 22 million. Twenty two million Negro Americans. Twenty two million of them. And remember also that many of them for years were denied any opportunity at the ballot box or a true economic or social opportunity. That day is over. The federal registration act voter registration guarantees the right to vote in federal registrars are right this very day in certain states in the United States registering voters. There were over four hundred fifty thousand more voters and in the southern states last election than there was in the election of one thousand eight hundred sixty four so we've made great progress in
education 8 million deprived young people were enjoying new benefits of education last year that they've never enjoyed before or one million young people between the ages of 16 and 22 are in job training six years ago there were none. Medicare which for 16 18 years was a topic of discussion and debate is a reality. Our work in the field of model city is our urban development our poverty program. We are expanding in fiscal year 68 in the president's budget over twenty five billions of dollars in a war on poverty. Twenty five billion as compared as compared to nine billion dollars in 1961 as compared to 11 billion dollars in one thousand eight hundred sixty three. I want you to know that the United States of America. Is primarily interested in the future. Futuristic. Country. Many people have advocated in the United States that we take a pause. That we've maybe moved too fast on the domestic
front. And there are those that think that we try to do too much on the international. But. The only problem with taking a pause while it seems restful. While you're pausing other people are moving. And they are gently moving either away from you or ahead of you. I do not believe that a pause. For a country of by caliber and bigger. And youthful zest. Is what is recommended or needed. I think we need steady forward progress. Knowing what our goals are. And having the willingness to commit ourselves to the achievement of those goals. And the goal in the United States today. Is the expansion of opportunity. It is the emancipation of. Humankind. Emancipation from fear and bigotry. And discrimination. And mancipation from illiteracy and disease and hopelessness. Full emancipation of man.
Abraham Lincoln was. Well described as the great emancipator. His doctrine or his Emancipation Proclamation was a promise. TO THE NATION. And in a very real sense a promise to a whole world. I honestly believe that 100 years later. Under the. Presidency first President Kennedy and now President Johnson. That the hope of the emancipation has become. A reality. For well on the way to being a reality. Of. Citizenship in the United States which I consider and I want to. I can think of no greater honor than to be called Citizen of the United States of America. That citizenship which has. Brought blessings to a vast majority of my people for many years. Is now a citizenship which is bringing blessings to that neglected minority as well as to the preponderant majorities.
In other words a high standard is one citizenship. The gap that we are seeking to remove or displace is the citizenship gap. We are striving to make. That. Promise of the pursuit of happiness. And life and liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Not merely something that is an academic. Topic. Or a subject of hope. But rather a reality. And what are we doing about it. There is no country on the face of the earth. Without being boastful knowing that we can learn from others. Recognizing the great achievements of others. But I submit there is no country that has attempted in such a massive scale. To do so much in such a short period of time for so many. As is underway right now in the United States of America. More before they'd like to get that from a very important point you've made it to the study done of
America change something about the war in the form of human occupation. All over the. World but. A great deal of money. Or even nothing. 3. They. Feel offended that. This book will be for Oracle. Oh of course I do if we could just get the war in Vietnam where I'm a peaceful man. We are spending twenty two billion dollars a year in money which is the least of the expenditures in the war in Vietnam the lives are much more important than the tragedy of it. But we are expanding and I want to make it quite clear and while money should not be they feel they total factory it is an indicator of the commitment that we're making some 25 billions of dollars to groups in American society that come under what we call the low income poverty level group. Now that's compared to six years ago of 9 billion dollars and compared to three and a half years ago of 11 billion dollars we are spending three hundred percent three times as much in our health programs over and beyond exclusive of Medicare in the coming
fiscal year. Three and a half times as much in federal aid to education. We have tremendous programs underway. So when I hear people say well what's happened to liberalism I say well to the liberal program much of which I sponsored in my political life may I say I say we passed it and don't be unhappy about the fact that we passed it you know it doesn't make you a liberal to fail. You can still be a liberal and succeed. Some people feel that if you fail in a program and you can continue to talk of the failures that you're then you're a liberal and I'm the kind of a liberal that likes progress and I say that when you pass Medicare aid to education when you pass conservation measures air pollution control water pollution control model cities programs reorganization of the health Medicaid Child Nutrition Act freedom and the war on hunger a program in which we're putting billions I think this is quite a liberal program and I'm mighty proud of it and I'd have something to do with it not just one in the back of a bus with a movie on but I'm desperate as is most of us for that.
Oh. There's no problem. The CIA appears to be a story within a state park to the rescue the very agency of United States government policy decisions often in direct contravention of the stated oaths you'll go. Well first it doesn't it doesn't make policy decisions in direct contradiction of our government. Every nation today has some system of intelligence operations. We're not as old at this as the British are we've had. We've had our hand involved in this sort of thing for about 20 some years as since World War 2 is a matter of fact starting with the OSA US and then going on with the Central Intelligence Agency and we have made some mistakes there's no doubt about that. And in hindsight we'd like to live a lot of it all over. We think for example that in monk's the student organizations that we'd have been better advised had we followed possibly your British Consul. Type of program here and as you know President Johnson has ordered all of the CIA activities related to private organizations to to stop no further financing
so you know that is why there are you satisfied about the job you were concerned about the CIA requests why not settle in the first place. Because of that. The CIA was not competent enough. Government policy for women with like a CIA policy is the elimination of communism. Are you suggesting to the current government policy has been by extension the elimination of companies in the world. Well what we have said is the government's policy is that we seek to live in a world of peace if we seek peaceful coexistence. We're not on aware of the fact that communism has powerful forces in this world today and we're not so naive or child basis to think that we're going to eliminate it. We do believe however that the forces of freedom have more momentum to them than the forces of totalitarianism and I want to say CIA has not said that it's a limb and aiding Communism what CIE has said in carrying out government policy is that we shall help those who seek to prevent the onrush of communist success to put it in a very generous terms maybe move on to the sort of good bit Noma journos in many
of your minds of when they're with a bunch of stuff. Free when your government started the filming of North Vietnam you said that the purpose of this activity was to false Hanoi to the conference table which you claim to know the most and willing to go to at that time. Since then no one has said that it's willing to come to the conference table if the bombing stops. And yet the bombing continues in America makes for the conditions aren't you asking Hanoi to accept your rights and commit unilateral OKso escalation if you feel like it. Well now I can understand why you asked the question because the premise on which you asked is that it is not the premise of our government's policy. We did not say that we started the bombing to bring Vietnam to the conference table. We said that we were hopeful that the bombing would make it more difficult for the infiltration of personnel and manpower into South Vietnam that the price of that infiltration would be substantially higher. We did not ever assume that the bombing would ever brain Vietnam to its knees.
I think that the body should know this better than anybody else in the world because the German bombing of Vietnam never German bombing of Britain surely did not destroy Great Britain and anybody that lived through that period knows better than to assume that bombing alone can do anything except to make a heavier price for whatever you seek to do so. We feel that the we're prepared to stop the bombing. We're prepared to stop the bombing when we can get one act of mutual reciprocity or reciprocity from North Vietnam. One of the Unitarians asked the vice president probably very few minimum act of reciprocity from the fifth which would enable America to stop Obama. Well the vice president the United States does not outline American government policy on the television network. Right. I might add that the the British have always had a great respect for what they call private diplomacy quiet talk your government my government's policy is this that we would like very much to have an opportunity to engage in conversation with representatives from Hawaii
on a ceasefire on a form of de-escalation either massive de-escalation or limited de-escalation for what Maria what procedures could we arrive at and under what form to bring about a conference to seek a peaceful settlement. Let me make it clear we do not ask. We do not lay down as a possible a military solution in Vietnam. We think that there must be a political solution in Vietnam and therefore we seek to bring this conference from the battlefield to the conference table. But it takes two to make to either dance or to make a settlement. And we prefer not the dance we want the settlement will come from or. Before. Our troops in Vietnam and together with our allies it's estimated that they outnumber the Vietcong by three to one perhaps four to one under the circumstances with every promise of a long drawn out rule. Doesn't isn't this an indication of the fact that there's considerable native support for the Viet Cong and isn't it also an indication the fact of the increased American troop commitment in Vietnam with to assist them in a tree and to attend the will.
Well we have been somewhat in a quandary about the number of forces that were necessary because the British experience in Malaya indicated that you want to have a ratio of about 10 to one. We have not thought however that that kind of manpower was required. We are seeking to bring in to be at Nama only that amount of American power which will achieve one objective. To bem it to permit South Vietnam to be able to work its own will in its own destiny for its own institutions in other words to prevent the aggression from the north and to permit the South to work out its destiny in the south. Now there are beget Cong forces and I would say you know candor and frankness about these things is what you want what I want in the Viet Cong there are some nationalists. The Viet Cong however is a communist dominated it receives its direction by the open admission of the whole chief man himself from Hun Oyo. There is there is no there isn't the government in the world that disputes that. May I say even the communist governments because when we finally get
around to talking about settlements in the Vietnam we talk about the settlement between the United States and North Vietnam which indicates I think even from some of the great countries of the world that North Vietnam has considerable control over the development of the government. When a senator going to receive US business in Mexico because your government has always refused to negotiate directly with the vehicle my government only for failure to do my government has never seen the will. They have medication but you are not prepared to negotiate directly with them. My government has said repeatedly that there were no insurmountable obstacles to having their Viet Cong represented at any negotiation. My government has said that we are primarily concerned about the aggression from the north. Just as we were concerned in aggression in other parts of human history as we were concerned about aggression in Korea just as we were concerned about the Soviets attempt to take over Berlin and to modify the agreements there. The policy of my government is
one that has been followed since 1945 in Iran in Turkey in Greece in Berlin in Korea in Cuba and now in Vietnam. He wanted to call a belter little dip now one more question on Vietnam. Surely Mr. President Mr. Vice President you really want peace you should recognize a government in North Vietnam and you should bring North and South Vietnam into the United Nations where you have a conference table already you will have a new faith in the United Nations we have great faith in the United Nations but the North Vietnamese has said repeatedly and only within the past week that the Vietnamese have that the United Nations have no business sticking its nose into Vietnamese affairs that has been the position of North Vietnam. Now we are perfectly willing to recognize the fact of the regime of North Vietnam because we are can communication will hold me and President Johnson has sent letters directly to Holcim in a North Vietnam and he has received a reply which is a public notice and not a reply that said maybe we could talk. Maybe there is some way that men of reason of compassion could
sit down and end this carnage you know he received a reply that was filled with by two by two peroration that was filled with dramatic language as contrasted me I say to other letters that had ministries and here we must move on with good tomorrow so good to me too to a Christian you are combining to do with your opinion posing as you. It. Will. Freak fate is the alternative for Britain if you fail to eventually come off it but it is our very sincere hope that the British with the. In the cooperation with their friends on the continent will be able to work out their entrance into the common market we do not believe that American sponsorship of these efforts is either helpful to Britain or the common market we have a feeling that the British and on the continent they are perfectly capable of working out their own destinies and I think that the government of the United States should best express its policy by saying we're friendly to your efforts we hope they're successful. But it's up to you to work them out
yesterday. And if they fail what do you suggest smoke them to close it but I would suggest that Prudence send and wisdom waited and waited to see what happens. But anyone who has not had a question so far still on this subject made it over there. So what is your attitude to go. What seems to be to go. Nation state view of the future of the US. It is our attitude that the welfare of Europe is best served by increasing the European unity and the coordination of the national state efforts in Europe for common purposes and common goals. We believe that they strong Europe a united free and independent Europe is that if he is better for all of the world and indeed better for all of the Europeans symptom though the dose of how will determine does you're not going to it's going to see the reunification of Germany. We consider the matter of firm public policy how it shall be accomplished
peacefully is a matter for people within Europe in cooperation with the United States to attain it. We believe that time and patience and perseverance the relaxation of the tensions between the the West and the east will promote that day which I think inevitably will come of some form. You know the reunification of Germany with. The. Our government has a policy on the perforations treaty as in the Soviet Union the 60 can study particular about Germany gaining control of nuclear weapons and very recently the question I'm going to reiterate you do wish to have some control of these weapons. What is the American government's attitude going to be in these circumstances the same as it has been namely that the nuclear weapons which we have shall remain in our control and other words there are enough fingers on the nuclear trigger without adding more not less excuse the NLF is no longer a policy that I have to run final question because I'm going to have to pre-fund some of the metadata off anything that I'm just going to be in Cuba of the Americans prosecuting and Melanie any Surely in the present
situation as a trifle and realistic approach for the Americans to act but I think the unknown nuclear proliferation treaty. If it seems on realistic now just let me say that they will be very realistic in the days ahead as you look at the dangers of non nuclear proliferation. First of all the government of the United States has never taken a firm stand on the matters of MLF it has been exploratory. What we are taking a firm stand on is the danger of the spread of nuclear weapons and we consider the nonproliferation treaty a vital step in the path of peace we consider one of the building blocks of peace we consider one of the ways to minimize the danger of nuclear conflagration. We are heartedly committed to it and we are working with the Soviet Union and with our allies in Western Europe to try to attain it. Mr. Vice President thank you listened to your roster is it over. Listen I am satisfied that I think I have had a very wonderful exchange here and I'm I'm sure that after we're through here we'll have a chance for a little more private.
Session. You have just heard a discussion between Vice President Hubert H Humphrey and a group of British students recorded recently in London and broadcast for the first time in the United States by national educational radio through the cooperation of the office of the vice president and the British Broadcasting Company. This program was adapted for national educational radio through the facilities of W am you FM American University Radio in Washington D.C. I am an E.R. public affairs director Bill Greenwood inviting you to join us again next week for another edition of the NE our Washington forum a weekly program concerned with these significant issues before us as a nation. Next week the NPR Washington forum presents an interview with the honorable C. Faris Bryant a former governor of the state of Florida and now director of the cabinet level Office of Emergency Planning in addition Governor Brian serves as President Johnson's
Life goes on man with the 50 state governors. It is that job we will discuss next week. Other programs scheduled on the NPR Washington forum include discussions with the chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission members of the White House Fellows program and Secretary of Agriculture orrible Freeman. This is the national educational radio network.
- NER Washington forum
- Vice President Hubert Humphrey
- Producing Organization
- National Association of Educational Broadcasters
- British Broadcasting Corporation
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- University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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- Episode Description
- Vice President Hubert Humphrey, meeting with British students in London.
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- Discussion series featuring a prominent figure affecting federal government policy.
- Public Affairs
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Host: Greenwood, Bill
Producing Organization: National Association of Educational Broadcasters
Producing Organization: British Broadcasting Corporation
Speaker: Humphrey, Hubert H. (Hubert Horatio), 1911-1978
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University of Maryland
Identifier: 67-24-10 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
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- APA: NER Washington forum; Vice President Hubert Humphrey. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-500-ft8dkp7b