Swisher: Health care.
Health care. I care deeply about this. And I remember when I was doing health care back in the day, '93, '94, and we were trying to move an agenda forward and I went to the American Academy of Pediatrics. And I've always been particularly concerned about what happens to kids who don't get the health care they need.
And I gave a really hot speech, and I got hammered for it, repeatedly. Because I don't know what the way forward will be for others, Walt, but for me, trying to convey my commitment, my lifelong commitment, and not only that, what I've done.
And you know, I'd put up against anybody who ran, or thought of running, what I've already accomplished compared to what they have on behalf of people. It just is very difficult to go from intensity, passion, emotion, to anger. So, yeah. Try and stay on the other side of that line.
Swisher: So spinning it forward, what do you think a Democrat ... how do you assess the current Democratic scene in terms of tech, and also what will happen with this Russian investigation?
I'm not going to speculate on who might end up running. We have to first win elections in New Jersey and Virginia in 2017, we've got to take the House back and keep our incumbents and maybe make progress in the Senate. Everything will change if we win in 2018.
Mossberg: Do you really believe we can?
Yes I do.
Mossberg: I say "we," I'm retiring soon.
Yeah, we. Yes.
Mossberg: We [laughter] can take the House back? [applause]
Mossberg: We've got 20-something Senate seats that we have to defend. I mean seriously, come on. You're really smart about this. Let's be honest.
Let's look at the House. We have to flip 24 seats, okay? I won 23 districts that have a Republican Congress member. Seven of them are in California, Darrell Issa being one. If we can flip those, if we can then go deeper into where I did well, where we can get good candidates, I think flipping the House is certainly realistic. It's a goal that we can set for ourselves.
Mossberg: Is the party organized to do that?
Well, we're working on it. I'm working on it.
Mossberg: We don't have a lot of time here.
Well you know, but we've got two very good political strategists running the Senate and the House for Democrats, Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer. They know how to win elections. They're incredibly focused, tireless and effective. So honestly, I'm hopeful about the House. And I'm working on it. I have a new organization called Onward Together and I'm helping some of these new groups that have sprouted up online to recruit candidates, run candidates, help candidates go to town halls, expose Republican members for their hypocrisy and the like. So we're working really hard on this.
Mossberg: What about the Senate?
I think the Senate is hard to make progress, but I think it's possible to hold our own. All of this depends on what we're talking about. So if the Republicans continue to make progress as they are in going into the next generation of personalization, message delivery, phony stories ... Go to Netflix and say you want to see a political documentary, eight of the top 10 — last time I checked a few weeks ago — were screeds against President Obama or me, or both of us.
Now, I love Netflix. We're not making the documentaries that we're going to get onto Netflix.
Mossberg: This is because Hollywood isn't liberal enough? [laughter]
No, it's because Democrats aren't putting their money there. You know, there's a classic line. Democrats give money to candidates, they want a personal connection. So the classic line is Democrats like to fall in love, Republicans just fall in line. Republicans build institutions, Republicans invest in those institutions, Republicans are much more willing to push and cross the line, and Democrats ... I've talked to dozens of donors since my election experience and I've said, "Look, I'm all for you trying to figure out who you're going to support in 2020, but what about 2017 and what about 2018 and what about helping the DNC try to leapfrog over its horrible data deficit, and how about supporting some of these new groups and see what they can do to generate some activity?"
We are not good historically at building institutions. And we've got to get a lot better. And that includes content. We have a great story to tell. You know, I found when I started the campaign that I had to say in practically everyone of my speeches, "Barack Obama save the economy, and he doesn't get the credit he deserves." I had to say that because people had been told differently. They didn't feel it yet. You know, income didn't really start inching up until 2015, late 2015.
So I was swimming against an historic tide. It's very difficult historically to succeed a two-term president of your own party, because you know, we're itchy people, we like change in American, and I get it. So there was that, but he had done a good job.
And you know, it was comparable ... I obviously think back to what my husband inherited, which at that time seemed to be an exploding deficit and an increasing debt. The debt of the country had been quadrupled the prior 12 years. So he had to do a lot of cleanup work, he paid a huge political price for it, lost the Congress in '94, had to fight back for getting reelected, and then we all know what happened in the second term which was bloodsport of the worse kind. And then the Supreme Court, despite Al Gore winning 500,000 more votes rules for Bush. So Bush comes in, and I worked closely with him on 9/11, but honestly the financial crisis, the morass in Iraq, and a lot of the other decisions that were made were very damaging. So then we elect President Obama, he comes in, he inherits the worst economy since the Great Depression, and he has to do a lot of things that are not easy to get it back and moving.
And it was like, "Okay, thank you very much, let's get excited about somebody who's going to really stir us up as opposed to do the job that needs to be done now."
Mossberg: Great analysis on the congressional at the national level [applause]. Let's move down ballot for a second. One of the things that just depresses me all the time is where are the Democrats running ... You know, they're mad at everybody. Every Democrat, every liberal, lots of moderates, even some moderate Republicans, are scared and angry about Trump.
Mossberg: I don't see him running for school board, I don't see him running for city council, I don't see him running for state legislature ...
That's starting to change, Walt. It really is. I've got every finger and toe crossed. So among the groups I'm supporting is a group called Run For Something, started by a young woman who worked for me and my campaign.
And they've had thousands of people go on the website to try to figure out what does it mean to run and then to put in information, "Here's what I'm thinking of." And they're beginning to win some races. Another group that's been around for a longer time called Emerge America supports women who run. Their grassroots operations invested in women in Nevada, we flipped both houses. I won Nevada, we won the House and the Senate of Nevada. So they're playing catch-up and trying to be more progressive and smart about their policies. You're absolutely right. We used to leave so many races uncontested, and we're not going to do that anymore.
Swisher: So when you think about that ... One of the things that we were also talking about last night is Republicans own local television stations, they own radio, they're better at the internet, that got that cable going — although there's some issues they have over there at Fox News these days. What do you do then? Where do you leapfrog?
Because obviously the internet is the best way to leapfrog that. And let's be honest, you have Hollywood on your side. There's a progressive media, most people think of the media as progressive. Well you don't, you think it's not. Like the New York Times for example.
Mossberg: The false equivalency.
The false equivalency.
Swisher: Right, we try to be fair.
Mossberg: I sense that that's changing.
I hope so.
Mossberg: That memo has been received.
I hope so. Because what ...
Swisher: So where's the in? Technologically?
This goes back to the institution building. Because the media forces on the Republican side are entrenched and very effective. So you've got obviously Fox, but you also now have Sinclair buying 140-plus local stations. And they're beginning to call the shots on those local stations.
Swisher: Give the example of Montana we talked about.
Yeah, well so you know Montana, those of you who saw the now newly elected member of Congress literally beating up, body slamming, pushing around, a young reporter, you know what happened.
You know that it had a really terrible look to it. The guy should never have been doing that. I don't know what enraged him so much being asked about health care. Sort of a strange trigger [laughter]. So the NBC affiliate in Montana, can't remember which city, Missoula or Billings. Anyway, they've just been bought by Sinclair. So the NBC mothership in New York calls this station and says, "Can you send us the footage of what happened?" They said, "No, because that reporter was from a liberal paper, and we don't think it's a story we want to be part of." Now, I find that terrifying. Because local news, yeah, there is the internet and how important it is and everybody who gets their news off of the internet, but local TV is still incredibly powerful.
Mossberg: So what are we going to do about it?
Well I've been ...
Swisher: You and Walt, what are you going to do about it?
Well I mean, we have a few ...
Mossberg: I've got some time now.
You would be a great adviser to one or more of our tech billionaires who want to buy some media.
Mossberg: Eh, they don't listen to me.
Well then, we're going to have to find other people who will compete against what is a considerable advantage on the other side.
Swisher: What do you think about Jeff Bezos owning the Washington Post?
I think that Jeff Bezos saves the Washington Post. I think his purchasing the Washington Post ... [applause] Which you know, I think a lot of people, a lot of his peers and friends thought, "Why would you buy this ancient medium called a newspaper?" But newspapers, like the Post, the Journal, the Times, a few others, still drive news. Drives news online, drives news on TV.
And what Bezos has done, from what I'm told, and Walt and I were talking about this backstage, you know, he's interested in making it a good proposition, but he's hands off on the editorial and content front and he's basically said, "Get out there and do investigations," and they're doing some of the best investigations about what's going on with the White House now. So I think that was really a very good use of his financial resources because now we have a very good newspaper again operating in Washington and driving news elsewhere and doing kind of Whitewater-level investigations.
Swisher: So we have to get to questions from the audience, and I don't think we can get intocovfefe right now because it's a longer thing [WM laughs], but ...
I thought it was a hidden message to the Russians [laughter].
Swisher: Oh you did [laughs]. That is perfect, thank you so much for that. That's going to be on our site in about five seconds [laughter].
So there's a lot of calls. One of the things that I'm struck by is a lot of some of the articles are like, "You've got to stop, you've got to move on, you've got to sunset yourself and go away."How do you ... I'm offended by it, but what do you think? Because you seem mad as ever,which I love. You know what I mean?
You know, look. I'm not going anywhere [applause]. I have a big stake in what happens in this country. I am very, you know, unbowed and unbroken about what happened, because I don't want it to happen to anybody else. I don't want it to happen to the values and the institutions that I care about in America. And I think that we're at a really pivotal point. And therefore I'm going to keep writing and keep talking and keep supporting people who are on the front lines of the resistance.
Swisher: Terrific. Question for Hillary Clinton.
Mossberg: Why don't we start over here.
Guy Horowitz: Guy Horowitz, I'm from Israel. So if it's any comfort, we also had an election decided by an election day weaponized social media case. I don't know if it's comforting at all.
Swisher: No it's not, it's worse.
Horowitz: That guy also had like a very questionable hairdo. But we survived. So my question to you is ... In Israel we look at everything that's happening outside the U.S. and what Donald Trump is saying and doing from the Paris climate thing and everything else that's happening. It looks like it's a clear and present danger to the world. And we're all talking here, which is good. But I don't feel like we're doing enough, maybe in the U.S., definitely in the world ...
Swisher: So question ... I'm sorry ...
Horowitz: ... to eliminate this clear and present danger.
Mossberg: And the question?
Horowitz: And the question is, what can we do right now?
Yeah. You know, I'm really glad you asked the question because I do think what he's doing is very dangerous to our position in the world, our leadership, and the stability of the world. I mean, when you give a blank check to the Russians and the Saudis, and others who are in engaged in authoritarian and dictatorial regimes, you are sending a message, "We don't care what you do." And that message will be heard. Now, we weren't always able to control what others did, but we sure made it clear we didn't think it was a good idea to engage in invasions and mass murders and other things that we see from the Philippines to the Middle East. When you turn on your allies and you treat them with such disdain and contempt, our democratic NATO allies who have stood with us, who came to our aide after 9/11, you are sending a message that you don't care about history, or even about the current problems that we face. Now, the only comfort I can get out of having lost in the way that I did and having the Russians play such a role is that Necron was ready and able to rebut that. He said, "I'm the Hillary Clinton of this election."
And they had certain institutional and media predictions that we don't have. But he also was really smart about how he dealt with it. And it also has given a lot of good understanding to Angela Merkel and her team as she moves towards her election, okay? And I think that is important because we need to reform democracies, we need to reform economies, we need to deal with some of the issues that are coming at us like artificial intelligence and robotics and what the heck we're going to do with all these people who are not going to have jobs. There are lots of big questions that the democratic world has to face, including Israel.
But we cannot stand idly by and allow Trump to continue to undermine the very strong foundation based on values that we in democracies share. Politicians come and go, but these values and the role that they play in stabilizing the world after the worst war in humanity, is critically important. You mentioned climate change, apparently they're debating in the White House whether to pull out of the Paris agreement. There are only two nations in the world that are not signatories to the Paris Agreement: Nicaragua and Syria. For the United States to throw our lot in with the very, very small number of countries that have turned their backs on climate change, is not only a breach of an agreement ... Usually when you come into office you can try to reform, maybe tinker with agreements, but part of what keeps us going is that America's word is good and you stand with your prior administration, whether it was of your party or not.
They're looking to throw all that out the window. But what's really stupid about it is they're throwing out the economic opportunities that being part of the Paris Agreement provide for the United States. That is what I find totally incomprehensible. Now, it is going to be interesting to see where they end up. The president is a very impulsive, reactive personality. So if we all like the Paris Agreement, he may decide to get out of it. Not even understanding one bit about what that means.
Or understanding the economic costs of it. You know, somebody is going to really ... probably more than one somebody, will really have the market for clean energy exports. China is moving full speed ahead to be that country. Some of the European countries, particularly when it comes to wind, are already there. Israel I know has some great research being done, particularly on solar. I mean, there's a huge market that somebody's going to own, and we're giving it up. There will be entrepreneurs and businesses, you will do your best to be competitive, but you won't have the full force and support of your government, and I think that is incredibly foolish.
Swisher: All right. Short questions so we can get to them.
Alexia Bonatsos: Hi Hillary.
Bonatsos: I'm Alexia Bonatsos. First off, thank you so much for what you have done for women [applause]. Thank you. So the present administration is very befuddling. This morning Spicer said that only the president and a small group of people knows what covfefe means. [WM and KS laugh] You've been a party to a lot of classified information.
Bonatsos: And you were at Donald Trump's wedding.
Yeah [WM laughs].
Bonatsos: What do you know about him that we don't, and how do you explain his bizarre behavior and appeal? [laughter, applause]
Swisher: That's such a good question!
Ah, the small group explanation. You don't have a high enough classification to know what covfefe mean [laughter]. You know, look. I was never even a social friend, it was kind of a lark to go to his third wedding [laughter, applause]. But I have to tell you, I sat behind Shaquille O'Neal, so I didn't see anything [laughter, applause].
But, seriously. The behavior that we are now seeing was always present, but it was sort of subordinated to real estate interests, right? He started attacking Ronald Reagan in 1988. You know, "Our government is a disgrace ..." So he's been an equal opportunity insulter going back many years. Started thinking about running for president in the '90s. Latched onto the lie of the birther movement about President Obama, rode that as far as he could. But he does have a visceral grasp of America's political underbelly.
He really understands how to inflame people, how to motivate them, how to bond with them. Over whatever their grievance is. Whatever resentment or point of anger that you may have, if he can get into it, whether it's race or sex or xenophobia or anti ... Islamophobia, whatever it is. And so we're seeing it on a broader stage. And it is deeply troubling for not only our politics but for our position in the world. And I think the best thing we can do is to continue to stand up, continue to defend the truth. You know, I gave a commencement speech at my alma mater and I quoted my predecessor in the Senate, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, with that famous remark, "Everybody's entitled to his own opinion but no one is entitled to his own facts." And that's why we need the media, we need the tech world, we need the online world.
We need everybody to be calling them out on their outrageous lies and make it clear that we can have a debate about what is the best way to provide health care, we can have a debate about a budget, but when you present a budget with a trillion dollar mathematical error, it's not like we're going to ignore it. And I think the more voices that can be pushing back, especially in areas that you know things about, the better. And then I'll just get back to politics and elections. We got to have your support here in California and across the country to try to take back the House and too, as Walt rightly says, field more people to run. And if you've ever been interested ... you know, Kara, if you've ever been interested in running, now is the time to get in there.
Swisher: I've got it.
And because I think people will be hungry for straight talking, common sense, factual information. We don't want to act like the American public isn't capable of making informed decisions. We just have to make sure the information we get is founded in evidence and reality. And then we can have a real debate.
Swisher: And you also have to be good with the Twitter. But go ahead.
Fred Davis: Hi, I'm Fred Davis, I live near you in New York. It's the day before the election, maybe the morning of the election. From everything I've read, I hear you think you're going to win.
Davis: Are those accounts accurate? Is the polling industry as inaccurate as we perceive it? And is there any quick suggestions to this crowd on how to fix it?
Well, Fred, yeah, I did think I was going to win. I spent the night before the election, I started in Philadelphia. We had a 40,000-person rally with Barack and Michelle and the president had been following it closely.
Those of you who know him, he was running his own polling, running his own analytics. And you know, and we thought we were going to win. That's all I can tell you. We knew, I knew, that I'd taken a tremendous hit after the Comey letter. And then later I understood the role that WikiLeaks played in it. But the Comey letter was measurable. You could see my drop. So you know, I needed a big majority to come out of Philadelphia, which I got. Close to 500,000. And I needed about a 15 to 17 point lead to come out of the Philadelphia suburbs. Before the Comey letter, based on our polling, I had about a 22 point lead in the Philadelphia suburbs. After that letter, my momentum, particularly among women in the suburbs, stopped and dropped. So I won the suburbs, but I only won them by 10.
And that wasn't enough. I mean, Pennsylvania's always a tough state and you've got to come out of the city and suburbs and Pittsburgh and a few other places. Which I won! I won Pittsburgh, I won the country there, I won Scranton, I won the county there. But I just got killed out in the country and my numbers couldn't hold me up. So yeah, we did think... I think polling is going to have to undergo some revisions in how they actually measure people. How they reach people. The best assessments as of right now are that the polling was not that inaccurate, but it was predominantly national polling, and I won nationally. What was not as obvious was what was happening in states where I was under a lot of pressure from Comey, WIkiLeaks, voter suppression, fake news, all of that. And that's kind of what happened.
Swisher: Okay, Rob?
Rob: Secretary Clinton, good to see you.
Rob: As we discussed last night, you were originally on the Senate Watergate committee in the '70s, so you know that part of it firsthand. What has to happen in 2018 to get robust activities in the House, particularly around an investigation? And to tie that back into your comments, how important is a democratic majority in your opinion to have a proper investigation into the Russia stuff and the kleptocracy and the other things that appear to be going on?
Well it's critical, Rob. Now one would hope that more Republicans, as they did during the Watergate investigation, because as Rob said, I was on the impeachment enquiry staff of the house judiciary committee, and Republicans then were not happy about investigating a president of their own party, but they were open to the evidence. And we ran under the great leadership of the late John Doar, a meticulous investigation and presentation of facts.
We don't have that right now in the Republican majority in the house, although they are continuing with the House investigation. And I'm hoping that that will building some momentum, because the Republicans have to be constantly pushed to put country above party. But I think it will more likely happen if we're successful in taking back the house. That's where investigations could come. Now, in the best of all worlds, if they would set up not a non-partisan, bi-partisan outside committee like we did for 9/11, and put people of unimpeachable integrity, both Republicans and Democrats, liberals and conservatives, but people who were willing to go where the facts led them, that would be ideal. I don't see that happening right now.
The only point I would make is if the Republican leadership begins to believe that Trump is a big political burden to them, then they will begin to be more open to a more thorough investigation.
Mossberg: So what do you think the odds are that McConnell, not Ryan, but McConnell, will come to that conclusion?
It all depends upon the numbers.
Mossberg: You know this guy.
Yeah, I do. And it all depends upon the numbers. I think that the Senate intelligence committee is working very well together from everything that I can see. You've got the Republican chairman, Senator Berg, working with the Democratic vice chairman, Senator Warner. They are pursuing a lot of leads. So I think both ... I mean, the House Committee is trying. I have to commend Adam Schiff, if any of you are in his district he's doing an amazing job [applause]. He's just so thorough and he's so clear.
So there are... there's some movement. Now with the special prosecutor being appointed, and I served with him, when I was Secretary of State he was still at the FBI. He's a man of great integrity. That will affect the pace of the investigation, it will affect what happened probably in the Congress, but it will move inexorably forward, because they will not be rebuffed the way that the Congress has been up until now.
Nilay Patel: Hi, Nilay Patel, the Verge. I'm from Wisconsin. Why didn't you spend more time in Wisconsin?
Well, I will tell you. We thought we were doing really well in Wisconsin. I spent a lot of time in Pennsylvania, a lot of time in Florida. We sent a lot of great surrogates including Tim Kaine and others to Wisconsin.
We watched up until the very end how Russ Feingold was winning. And you know, you make these scheduling decisions based on the best information that you have, and it turned out that our information was not as reliable as I wished it had been.
Patel: Did you see that before, or is that in hindsight?
That's in hindsight, yeah. The other thing that's in hindsight which is really troubling is — since you're from Wisconsin you may find this particularly interesting — the AP did a really well-researched piece about voter suppression in Wisconsin. And they literally found people who showed up to vote and were turned away, because Wisconsin under the current governor, Scott Walker, has been one of the leaders in voter suppression, making it difficult. So the 85-year-old woman who doesn't have a photo ID because she doesn't drive anymore shows up with her medicare card and her utility bills and they turn her away.
Or the African American. Or the veteran, also African American, who moves from Illinois to Wisconsin, registers to vote, gets on the rolls, but he still has his Illinois driver's license, shows up, they turn him away. The best estimate is that 200,000 people in Wisconsin were either denied or chilled in their efforts to vote.
I don't think we believed at the time before the election that it would be anything like that, anything as big as that. So, I will also say that I referenced earlier, there were all these Google searches going on about WikiLeaks, and they were particularly prevalent, very high incidents, in certain counties in Wisconsin. So you had counties that had voted for Obama and were not particularly keen about voting for Trump but worried that I was going to jail, worried that I was running a child trafficking operation in the basement of a pizzeria, the kind of things that were in WikiLeaks [laughter].
You laugh, people were obsessing over this stuff. Obsessing over it. And you put yourself in the position of a low-information voter, and all of a sudden your Facebook feed, your Twitter account is saying, "Oh my gosh, Hillary Clinton is running a child trafficking operation in Washington with John Podesta." Well, you don't believe it, but this has been such an unbelievable election, you kind of go, "Oh maybe I better look into that."
Swisher: Yeah, and you are a lizard.
Yeah, and well, whatever I am, I'm everything. And so you being to get sucked into it. So some people stayed home, some people voted for Trump, some people stayed with me, and some people went third party, because they wanted to vote, they thought it was their duty, but they didn't like Trump and now they thought I was as bad as they were being told. So it was a confluence of all kinds of things.
Samantha Miller: My name is Samantha Miller, I'm known for founding one of the first cannabis labs in the U.S. And what I wanted to say to you is that I'm inspired by you as a leader, not as a woman.
Mm, thank you, thank you very much [applause].
Miller: And one of the questions I often get asked as an executive, what is some advice you can give to young women who want to attain success? I always say to them, the one thing that I point to for young women is if you can shed the need for external validation, because that's the thing that often keeps you out of the board room, that's a huge step to your success. So I would really appreciate what your advice to women is who are trying to achieve those heights of success.
Well I would echo what you said. It is absolutely the case. You have to be better prepared than anybody. You have to know your stuff as well as you possibly can.
You have to be brave because there's going to be a lot of setbacks and push-backs and all the things that go with it. And you have to be aware of what, up until now, has been a pretty predictable pattern. You know, Sheryl Sandberg writes about this in "Lean In" and the research is convincing. So, as a man gets more successful, regardless of his personality, he gets more likeable. As a woman gets more successful, regardless of her personality, she gets less likeable. It is just inverse. And you have to ... Eleanor Roosevelt said, "If you're going to be a woman in the public arena, you have to grow skin as thick as the hyde of a rhinoceros." And you really do have to be prepared. And it's not just in politics, it's in business, it's in, you know, the tech world, it's everywhere. And it's not easy.
I mean, it's really, really hard. And I just tell young women to develop more confidence in themselves. You know, I've hired lots of young people over the course of my long career, the private sector and the public sector, not-for-profit sector, and the conversation usually goes like this. You say to a young man, "I want to give you more responsibility, I want to give you a promotion, I want to pay you more." And he goes, "Wow, great! I'm ready! Send me in!" Sometimes he says, "What took you so long?" in getting to that point.
But for a young woman, it's like, "You think I'm good enough? You really do? You think I can do it?" Well I wouldn't be asking you if I didn't. But there is still, even for upwardly mobile, successful young women, those doubts, that sense of insecurity. And then when you're bombarded with expectations about how you're supposed to look and how you're supposed to act and what you're supposed to say and all the rest of it, it can become very disorienting.
So, I guess the final thing I would say is, it really is important both for men and women, for mothers and fathers, for employers of both genders, to be really ready to support young women, and to give them that confidence, that external confidence, but to do everything you can to help them weather all of the push-backs and knockdowns that are going to come their way. [applause]
Mossberg: All right, we only have time for one more question, and it goes back over here.
Swisher: So make it good.
Mossberg: Yeah, make it good.
Pete Pachal: All right, no pressure. Pete Pachal from Mashable. Looking at Twitter specifically, you spoke a little bit about Facebook, but on Twitter, if you weigh all its good qualities of bringing realtime information to pretty much everyone, and its bad qualities of basically rewarding sass over substance, and generally not having a lot of nuance, do you think it has been bad or good for our national discourse in the United States?
Wow. Haha. Hmm. I think it has certainly provided, as you say, positive information, quick turn-around information, to a very large audience. But I think it has become victimized by deliberate efforts to shape the conversation, and push it towards conspiracies, lies, false information. And I think it's the same problem that Facebook faces, that when you try to be all things to all people and you try to open up your platform so that people can come in, and you want to be influential because you expect people will actually tune you in and read and watch what you have, what do you do to try and contain the weaponization and manipulation of that information? I don't think we know yet.
And I have a lot of sympathy at this point. Kara doesn't, but I do [KS laughs] for people trying to make these decisions. I would just urge them to hurry up. Because even if you err slightly more on the curating editorial decision-making, so some voices are going to be cut off, some fake news outlets, the guys in Macedonia are going to be denied entry into your platform, I'd rather see us erring on that side for a while to see what the effects are, instead of being kind of overwhelmed by the challenge, like, "What do you do?" I mean, how do you try and determine who should or shouldn't be on your site? And so I think it's a mixed bag.
Let me just pose this question: Who is behind driving up Trump's Twitter followers by the millions? We know they're bots. Why? I assume there's a reason for everything. Is it to make him look more popular than he is? Is it to try to influence others on Twitter about what the messaging is so that people get caught up in it and lose sight of what they're trying to say?
Mossberg: Well, it puts the Tweets on more feeds. More people's feeds see the Tweets.
Yeah, that's my point. You've got millions of people ... the bots are coming in, you've got these repetitive arguments, you're driving up his numbers. But what is it you're trying to achieve? What is the message behind this? So you're sitting in Moscow or Macedonia or the White House, wherever you are [laughter], and you're saying, you know ... [WM laughs]
Mossberg: Just three random places.
That trip may not have worked out so well, you know, there's no blowback.
Mossberg: Really, pushing the guy. ..
Pushing the guy, failing to reaffirm our commitment to NATO, all of that. And how do we recover from that? Well, we begin to divert people again. I mean, you can't let Trump and his allies be a diversion. They are a threat. And they have been effective up until now. So Twitter is a perfect example. You're going to drive up the numbers. You've got more people chasing rabbits down rabbit holes, you've got all kinds of stuff happening. Why? To divert attention. It's like covfefe, trending, world wide. Maybe for a minute you'll forget the latest accusations about them conspiring with Russia, or their trillion dollar mathematical mistake in their budget, or depriving 23 million people of health care.
You know, it's the circus. Right? It's what a classic authoritarian does. It's not just about influencing your institutions, your values. They want to influence your reality. And that to me is what we're up against. And we can't let that go unanswered, whether it's on Twitter, Facebook, or anywhere else [applause].
Swisher: Let's end on that. That's brilliant. Everybody, Hillary Clinton [applause].
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