Skip navigation

All In With Chris Hayes, Tuesday, July 14th, 2015

Read the transcript from the Tuesday show

  Most Popular
Most viewed


Date: July 14, 2015

Guest: Chris Murphy, Lawrence Wilkerson, Ron Semler, Joe Del Bosque, Eric




                (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)


                CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST (voice-over):  Tonight on ALL IN -- 


                BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  Because America

negotiated from strength and principle, we have stopped the spread of

nuclear weapons in this region. 


                HAYES:  The president announces a landmark nuclear deal with Iran, and

Republicans go ballistic. 


                SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA:  This is a terrible deal. 


                SEN. TOM COTTON (R), ARKANSAS:  Terrible, dangerous mistake. 


                DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE:  You know the Iranians are

going to cheat. 


                HAYES:  Tonight, how the Obama doctrine is changing the course of

history, and how the president`s opposition plans to dismantle a deal. 


                Plus, the author that Tony Morrison calls required reading.  Ta-Nehisi

Coates on his new book. 


                And, "ALL IN America: Water Wars", an in-depth look at the terrifying

villain of a California drought, no bigger than the size of a quarter.


                UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  If people are making more money at almonds,

they`ll plant more almonds and take something else out. 


                HAYES:  ALL IN starts right now.


                (END VIDEOTAPE)


                HAYES:  Good evening from California.  I`m Chris Hayes. 


                I`m here in the vineyards of Malibu family wines in the Santa Monica

Mountains, where they grow enough grapes to make about 8,000 cases of wine

a year.  You can`t grow grapes without water.  And like many other growers

in California, they are facing new difficulties and intense pressure,

thanks to the year`s long drought here.  Much more on what the water

shortage is doing here and across the state coming up. 


                We begin tonight with one of the most historic days in the Obama

presidency and a potentially transformative moment for American foreign

policy.  Today`s announcement of a deal between Iran and six nations led by

the U.S. to limit Iran`s nuclear ability in exchange for the lifting of

brutal international sanctions. 


                The deal represents the culmination of an approach to foreign policy

that dates back to Barack Obama`s first presidential run.  When the then-

candidate was lambasted for saying he would be willing to meet with Iran`s

leaders and those of other hostile nations without preconditions. 


                (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)


                SARAH PALIN (R), FORMER ALASKA GOVERNOR:  Barack Obama is off base in

his proclamation that he would meet with some of these leaders around our

world who would seek to destroy America. 


                SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA:  What Senator Obama doesn`t seem to

understand, without precondition, you sit down across the table from

someone who is called Israel a stinking corpse and wants to destroy that

country and wipe it off the map, you legitimize those comments.  This is

dangerous.  It isn`t just naive.  It`s dangerous. 


                HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE:  I don`t think you

promise without preconditions for the president to meet with the leaders of

antagonistic states and get nothing in return. 


                (END VIDEO CLIP)


                HAYES:  Even then President George W. Bush got into the act in a

speech to the Israeli Knesset, where he drew a line between Obama`s

position and calls before World War II to sit down with Hitler. 


                (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)


                GEORGE W. BUSH, FORMER PRESIDENT:  We have an obligation to call this

what it is -- the false comfort of appeasement, which has been repeatedly

discredited by history. 


                (END VIDEO CLIP)


                HAYES:  Today, seven years later, George W. Bush`s brother, Jeb,

echoed those words, releasing a statement saying the Iran deal, quote,

"isn`t diplomacy -- it is appeasement."


                We`ll have much more on the attacks on the agreement later in the

show.  But for a president who told hostile nations in his first inaugural

address that he would, quote, "extend a hand if you`re willing to unclench

your fist," today`s announcement of a deal after 20 months of intense,

grueling negotiations demonstrates the value of a commitment to the

transformative power of American diplomacy. 


                (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)


                OBAMA:  History shows that America must lead not just with might but

with our principles.  It shows we are stronger not when we are alone, but

when we bring the world together. 


                (END VIDEO CLIP)


                HAYES:  Under the deal, there will be strict international monitoring

of Iran`s nuclear capabilities , and Iran must reduce its stockpile of low

enriched uranium by 98 percent and its centrifuges by 2/3, extending the

time it would take Iran to make enough material for a nuclear bomb from two

to three months to a year or more. 


                Celebrations broke out inside Iran, as citizens cheered the prospects

of the end of international sanctions that have crippled the Iranian

economy and stifled economic opportunity.  President Obama will hold a

press conference tomorrow to make the case of the deal to the American

people, as well as a skeptical Congress, which will have 60 days to review

the agreement.  He vowed today to veto any legislation that prevents

successful implementation of the agreement and took a shot to the critics

offering up bombastic rhetoric, noting, quote, "tough talk from Washington

does not solve problems". 


                Joining me now, Democratic Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut, a

member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.


                Well, Senator, this has been obviously anticipated for a long time.  A

little unclear whether it was going to fall apart in the last few weeks. 

Your reaction to the announcement today in terms of what this means for the

Obama presidency, for the Democratic Party, for the country at this really

crucial moment? 


                SEN. CHRIS MURPHY (D), CONNECTICUT:  Well, people thought Obama`s

legacy was cemented a week ago when the Supreme Court ruled in favor of

same-sex marriage and they put us on a path of full implementation

permanent for the Affordable Care Act.  This is legacy plus. 


                If this agreement is ultimately ratified by the Congress, which I

think it will be, it`s not just putting us on a path for a more stable

Middle East, a resolution of the Iran nuclear question without going to

war, it`s also a victory for diplomacy as a legitimate tool in the

president`s arsenal of tools to protect the country. 


                And I think that`s really going to be the fight we`re going to have. 

Not just about this agreement and the details of it.  It`s really about a

belief on behalf of the president and many Democrats that diplomacy

properly exercise can make us safer, and the belief of Republicans in the

Senate and the neoconservatives that are running these presidential

campaigns that are first, and sometimes only option, should be military

force to protect us around the world.  This is going to be a historic

debate.  I`m looking forward to it. 


                HAYES:  I mean, this will be the most contentious, intense and, in

some ways, concrete foreign policy debate we have seen in a very, very long

time in this run up.  And there`s a lot of talks about Democratic

essentially defecting from the president.  What do you think that debate is

going to look like? 


                MURPHY:  Well, I think if you watch the history of this debate over

the last year or so, you`ve seen it when the president engages wholesomely

in a debate over the future of his Iran policy, he`s able to hold

Democrats.  I think the same will happen here.  In part, because, as you

play this debate out, the other side is simply not going to have a

realistic alternative.  It`s easy to pick apart this deal and say that if

it was solely up to me, it would play out differently.  But this was a

negotiation from the beginning.  The whole reason that we agreed to these

sanctions was to bring them to the table, the Iranians, to have a

conversation about their nuclear program. 


                I don`t think Republicans or even Democratic opposition are ultimately

going to have a better answer as to how to get a 10 to 20-year time window

whereby Iran can`t get a nuclear weapon.  This is our best shot at

guaranteeing that outcome.  And if you`re going to be against this deal,

then you got to show what you would do in the alternative.  That`s going to

be a space that people aren`t going to be able to occupy, I don`t believe. 


                HAYES:  You just said the word can`t, which is one of the things that

will be contested.  There`s going to be a whole sort of spectrum of

criticisms of this deal.  But at base, one of them is how rock solid is the

inspection regime?  Can the Iranians cheat on this?  What is your sense, or

are you confident in the, they can`t, under this agreement? 


                MURPHY:  So, this is a 100-plus page agreement.  I`ll be honest with

you, Chris.  I haven`t read every word of it yet.  And that`s really going

to be the most important thing to me and to others.  But the first thing we

have to admit is that you can never have 100 percent guarantee that the

Iranians aren`t going to cheat.  All you can do is put into place an

unprecedented, robust series of intrusive inspections that give you the

best chance at finding out if they do.  And we have never subjected any

country, who has made a commitment not to develop a nuclear weapons program

to this level of inspections. 


                We get into the military sites.  We will get into the nuclear research

sites.  We will see the entire supply chain from the production of the

uranium all the way to the research labs. 


                We`re all going to be turning this over with a fine-tooth comb to make

sure the inspections are everything that President Obama says they are. 

But this is unprecedented.  And if you were going to find out if they were

cheating, it`s likely this inspection regime that will get you there --

admittedly, never going to be 100 percent. 


                HAYES:  You know, I`ve also seen -- one of the things that`s

developed, I think, over the last month or so, is criticism go from the

specifics of the deal to the project to begin with, right? 


                MURPHY:  Right. 


                HAYES:  Some folks say the specifics of the problem, and some say, you

have legitimized the Iranian regime.  You`ve legitimized this regime that

is virulently anti-Semitic, that is a state-sponsor of terror.  That is

doing horrible things in Syria.


                What -- how prominent is that argument going to be in the next month

or two? 


                MURPHY:  Well, I think you saw that in Prime Minister Netanyahu`s

speech when it came before Congress some months ago, which he spend about

half of his speech saying that there`s really no circumstance in which you

can legitimately deal with this country.  But I think we have to look back

to the arms control agreements that we negotiated with the Russians, that

Republican and Democratic presidents negotiate.  We didn`t legitimize

Russia.  We didn`t put a stamp of approval on their other nefarious

activities by taking part of the nuclear weapons question off the table. 

And we don`t legitimize Iran`s other actions as this agreement is signed

into law.


                What we`re doing here is taking the nuclear weapons question off the

table so that we have a better shot of calling Iran to the table on their

support for terrorism, of their abuse of human rights.  If they were to be

sponsoring terrorism in the region under a nuclear umbrella, it would be

much worse than trying to deal with that question with a nuclear issue off

to the side.


                It`s a total rewrite of the history of Iran nuclear sanctions

negotiations, to believe these sanctions have been in place to try to

automatically, overnight, turn Iran from a good actor -- from a bad actor

into a good actor.  We`re going to have a lot of work ahead of us to try to

address all these other issues that we have, legitimate issues with Iran. 


                HAYES:  All right.  Senator Chris Murphy, thank you. 


                Still ahead, the outrage at the Iran deal, and some is nothing short

of apocalyptic, literally.


                Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson is here with the reality check.


                Plus, "Between the World and Me", the book, one reviewer says every

American urgently needs to read.  The author, Ta-Nehisi Coates, will be

here live.


                And later, from wineries to farming to the kitchen sink, more stories

on the drought from the road in California. 


                All that and more ahead.


                (COMMERCIAL BREAK)


                HAYES:  Could you hear the opposition this morning to the Iran nuclear

deal?  From certain quarters, it came quickly and without reservation. 


                (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)


                GRAHAM:  With the mere passage of time, this industrial strength

program that we`ve locked in place will become a nuclear weapons program,

so the Arabs are going to get their own bomb.  This is the most dangerous,

irresponsible step I`ve ever seen in the history of watching the Mideast. 


                COTTON:  This proposed deal is a terrible, dangerous mistake that`s

going to pave the path for Iran to get a nuclear weapon, will also giving

them tens of billions of dollars of sanctions relief.  The American people

are going to repudiate this deal and I believe Congress will kill the deal. 


                BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER:  This cash bonanza will

fuel Iran`s terrorism worldwide, its aggression in the region, and its

efforts to destroy Israel, which are ongoing. 


                TRUMP:  The principle is terrible.  We have to be able to inspect

immediately.  Immediately.  We don`t have the right to inspect immediately. 

Anytime, anywhere, we should be able to.  It`s called anytime, anywhere. 

We have to be able to go in and inspect.  If you don`t have that, you have

nothing because you know the Iranians are going to cheat. 


                (END VIDEO CLIP)


                HAYES:  But if you look at a lot of the criticism carefully, it seems

to be a bit of a bait and switch.  I`m going to explain and Colonel

Lawrence Wilkerson will join me, next. 


                (COMMERCIAL BREAK)


                HAYES:  The opposition to the Iran nuclear deal has been gearing up

for this moment for six years.  The deal, in many ways, really does

represent everything opponents fear.  Everything they hate.  Everything

they want to defeat.  And politically, it will become to foreign policy

what Obamacare has been to domestic policy.  There will likely be total

unanimity among Republicans and opposition. 


                But just as a Republican nominee will rail against Obamacare and

pledge to repeal it and will find it almost impossible to do so, so will be

with this agreement. 


                Unless you think the opposition will be sober and serious, but never

hysterical, behold the apocalypse.  In this graphic tweeted by the

president of the Israel Project, Josh Block, "Nuclear terror."  And even

worse, in this fantasy graphic, nuclear terror live on cable news.


                Joining me now, former chief of staff to then-Secretary of State Colin

Powell, Colonel Lawrence Wilkinson, currently distinguished visiting

professor of government and public policy at the College of William and



                And, Colonel, I can`t help but be reminded when I listen to the

invocations of World War II, to the cries of appeasement, to you will let

these people get a weapon of mass destruction, it will be on your hands and

there will be a, quote, "mushroom cloud", I cannot help but remember the

run up to the Iraq war.  It`s some of the exact same people saying the same



                LAWRENCE WILKERSON, COLLEGE OF WILLIAM & MARY:  That was my feeling

when I heard Senator Cotton, for example, say that a war with Iran would

only last a few days.  It reminded me of those in 2002 and 2003 saying that

the Iraq war would be easy and that people would meet us with roses in the

streets.  These people can`t seem to even find new arguments.  They just

take out the old template, dust it off and apply it to the new situation. 


                And that goes with the Munich analogy, too, which has about as much

relevance for this situation as perhaps a water shortage in California has

for people raising almonds and wine.  This is really about politics.  And

my party has made its decision.  Donald Trump may be the leading edge of

that decision, and they may be annoyed with him but he reflects that

decision, too.  Lindsey Graham reflects that decision. 


                That decision is to do everything they possibly can to damage this

president, even at the expense of the country. 


                HAYES:  Let me play devil`s advocate for a moment, partly because the

details here are technical.  I mean, I remember after I got off air talking

to the energy secretary, Mr. Moniz, who was part of the negotiating team,

and he was trying to --




                WILKERSON:  Huge part of the team. 


                HAYES:  Yes. 


                WILKERSON:  Huge part of the team.


                HAYES:  And they are really complicated, right?  This is a complicated

deal.  It`s complicated diplomatically.  It`s going to be complicated



                What ends up happening is this essentially becomes a proxy.  Do you

trust President Barack Obama or do you not?  I mean, what do you think of

people who say, they got rolled, I don`t trust that these negotiators got

the best deal they could get? 


                WILKERSON:  I`ve talked to enough experts and have been involved

almost two years now.  I talked to nuclear experts, I talked to people who

worked on the agreed framework for North Korea, which I was imminently

involved with, with President Bush.  I talked with others who know much

more about it than I.  I got the agreement this morning, all 100 pages, 20

plus 80, 80 of addendum and so forth. 


                I got the side agreement, or at least a summary of it, that Amani (ph)

has, to look at the PMD, the prior possible military dimensions of Iran`s

nuclear problem.  Something I thought we`d never get.  And render an

assessment by December. 


                This agreement is probably the most historic and intrusive inspection

agreement under the NPT or any other treaty for that matter in the history

of nuclear weapons.  And maybe even in the history of international

agreements.  It couldn`t be any tighter. 


                However, any agreement, 1,000-page agreement is imperfect.  It can be

violated.  Iran could go off in secret. 


                However, I don`t see any way they`re going to go off in secret and do

anything that we aren`t going to detect some way.  And that`s based on the

logistics that are necessary to really develop a nuclear weapon.  We would

detect that. 


                I think Iran sees this.  I think Iran will probably comply with the

agreement, so long as we comply with our sections, simply because it is a

way for them to come back into the international community as a responsible

partner in that community.  It may take a decade.  It may take 15 years.  I

think as long as everyone is agreeing things are going the way they should

be, Iran would find more good fortune by comporting itself with the

agreement than by violating it.  That`s the whole mechanism here.


                And one other issue, we aren`t going to solve any of the problems in

that region.  Afghanistan, Iraq, the horrendous civil war in Syria,

Israel`s long-term security without Iran, the most stable nation in

Southwest Asia, on some way being in our camp helping us.  As they`re

helping us now with ISIS. 


                It`s a very complex situation.  On the one end, they support

Hezbollah.  On the other end, they`re fighting the most potent terrorist

threat in the region, ISIS, alongside us. 


                So, this kind of complexity has been dealt with in this exquisite

diplomacy.  It needs to continue to be dealt with, and it does not need the

find of apocalyptic statements that are coming out of Lindsey Graham and

others who should know better but for political purposes, they`re making

the statements they`re making. 


                They covet the White House.  They want the White House in 2016, and

they see that dream falling apart already.  And they see President Obama`s

popularity with the American people possibly being increased by this deal. 

They don`t want that to happen because they want the White House so bad in



                I`m sad to say that about my own party, but this is mostly not about

substance, it`s about politics. 


                HAYES:  Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, always a pleasure.  Thank you,



                LAWRENCE:  Thanks for having me, Chris. 


                HAYES:  Still ahead, I`ll talk with Ta-Nehisi Coates about his highly

anticipated new book, "Between the World and Me."  That`s coming up.


                (COMMERCIAL BREAK)


                (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)


                HAYES:  I`m here with Ron Semler, who`s the owner and founder, right,

of Malibu Family Wines.  This incredible plot of land here. 


                RON SEMLER, MALIBU FAMILY WINE:  Thank you. 


                HAYES:  Now, you bought this in the 1970s.  There has been a fire

here.  You sort of did some ranching with horses.  You started planting

avocados and you decided to make the switch from avocados to grapes.  Why

did you do that? 


                SEMLER:  Well, after the big fire in 1978 when we bought this

property, we really didn`t think about doing anything other than maybe

doing some kind of an agriculture product.  Avocado seemed like the thing

to do. 


                And we planted over 15,000 avocado trees.  In 1996, we had a huge

freeze, and at that particular time, we lost almost a million pounds of

fruit overnight.  And my wife and I looked at each other and said, we need

to change and do something that is going to make a little more sense.  And

so, we looked into grapes, and wine grapes in particular.  Here we are

today, growing grapes in the hills of Malibu. 


                HAYES:  Do they take less water, the grapes than the avocados? 


                SEMLER:  There`s 1/7th the amount of water of an avocado orchard



                HAYES:  So, fourth year now of this historic drought.  We can see how

dry the ground is beneath us here. 


                SEMLER:  Yes.


                HAYES:  How is it affecting you guys? 


                SEMLER:  Well, it`s not great for us, obviously.  Our wells are very

low levels.  We`re needing to buy water, which is very expensive.  And it`s

-- our productivity, as far as yields, are much lower. 


                HAYES:  What is the solution?  I mean, if this keeps going on, right,

what are you guys going to do? 


                SEMLER:  Well, one of the things we`re looking at, we`re looking at

all types of alternatives, but one of the things we`re looking at is

something called RDI, which is root demand irrigation.  They actually place

the drip system underground, and it releases water when the plant demands



                HAYES:  This is even more efficient than drip irrigation, because the

water isn`t dripping anywhere, literally going into the root. 


                SEMLER: Exactly.  It`s not pouring all that water on to the soils. 

It`s not running off the hills.  It`s something we`re experimenting with. 

Maybe it`ll be an answer to helping us.  An El Nino or two wouldn`t hurt



                HAYES:  Yes.  We may get that, and we maybe another climate crisis on

our hands. 


                Ron Semler, thanks so much for having me here. 


                SEMLER:  Pleasure.  Thank you for being here.  Appreciate it. 


                (END VIDEOTAPE)


                HAYES:  We`ll have much more on the drought live from Malibu Family

Wines in California, ahead. 


                (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

                (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

                JAMES BALDWIN, WRITER:  I don`t know whether the labor unions and

their bosses really hate me.  That doesn`t matter, but I know I`m not in

their unions.

                I don`t know if the real estate lobbies is against black people, but I

know the real estate lobby keep me in the ghetto.  I don`t know if the

board of education hates black people, but I know the textbooks they give

my children to read and the schools that we have to go to.

                Now, this is the evidence.  You want me to make an act of faith,

risking myself, my wife, my woman, my sister, my children, on some idealism

which you assure me exists in America which I have never seen.

                (END VIDEO CLIP)

                HAYES:  I`ve been wondering who might fill the intellectual void that

plagued me after James Baldwin died.  Clearly, it is Ta-Nehisi Coates. 

Those words by Pulitzer prize winning novelist Toni Morrison are written on

the back of Ta-Nehisi Coates` new book, "Between the World and Me."

                The book is 152 page letter addressed to Coates` son, in which Coates

writes, quote, "white America is a syndicate arrayed to protect its

exclusive power to dominate and control our bodies.  However it appears,

the power of domination and exclusion is central to the belief in being


                Coates` book has been so hotly anticipated, his publisher took the

rare move of moving up its publication.  He`s right now on the cover of New

York magazine.  All right, many reviewers are calling the book an instant

classic. Slate called it, quote, "a book destined to remain on store

shelves, bedside tables and high school and college syllabi long after its

author or any of us have left this earth."

                As America moves into the final years of the Obama presidency, Coates

has emerged as among its most celebrated writers and thinkers.  I should

also say full disclosure he`s also a friend of mine.  So I can also admit

that as a writer myself, I tore through his book in one sitting.  It not

only blew me away with its moral urgency and distinct prose, but it made me

profoundly jealous because it is a masterpiece.

                Joining me now, Ta-Nehisi Coates, author of "Between the World and

Me," and national correspondent at The Atlantic.

                Ta-Nehisi, there is this word that keeps cropping up in the book, in

the plural, it was in the quote about bodies.  You talk to your son about

your body.

Your body can be snatched.  Your body, the black body is something that

white supremacy has taken over time.

                Why that word?  Why is that so central to your understanding of how

racism operates in America?

                TA-NEHISI COATES, AUTHOR:  Because racism is a physical experience. 

That can`t be lost.  I think there`s a tradition, and probably a necessary

tradition, in African-American thinking, and African-American theology,

certainly of speaking of the body as a thing that`s taken an somehow the

soul triumphing, or the mind triumphing.

                And you know, my experience in this country as an African-American, my

reading in history, in the way I was certainly brought up, my own beliefs

about the world kind of run contrary to that.  The soul is part of the

body.  The mind is part of the body from my perspective.  And so when folks

do physical violence to black people, to black bodies in this country, the

soul as we construe it is damaged, too.  The mind is damaged, too.  The

soul cannot escape.  The mind cannot escape.

                If you think of the violence done to, say, Rodney King when he`s beat

down by all of those police officers, no matter what that settlement was, I

suspect he never actually recovered from that.

                You know, I suspect that the people that came out of the experience of

enslavement in 1865 never recovered from that.  No matter how much they

sought to improve their minds and their souls.  And I don`t think that

should ever be lost.  I don`t think that can be redeemed, that can`t be

made better by any sort of spiritual, any sort of gospel or any sort of

talk of uplift.

                HAYES:  The president, in many ways, has, central to his power as a

politician, has been telling a specific type of story about racism in

America, and particularly the kind of possibility that we can transcend our

history, that sort of dark gravitational force is there.  It`s always

present.  But we have the power within us to transcend it.

                And much of what this book is about just how powerful that force is,

how much it keeps yanking us back, and yanking us back into the past.

                Do you think it is, in some final sense, transcendable?  Is there some

vision of progress, where we do, in some ways, move further from it?

                COATES:  I don`t know.  I highly doubt it can ever be transcended. 

Right now, I have a great deal of interest in the history of Europe.  The

history of France shows that, in a country like that and certainly other

countries in Europe, they have been dealing with the dark force of anti-

Semitism for -- you know, going on a millennia.

                You know, we live in a country that`s, you know, what, some 200, 250

years old or so, you know somewhere around about that. 

                It is definitely conceived.  It`s certainly conceivable that we will

be grappling with this for the entirety of our history.

                I don`t know that one can necessarily transcend you know the force of

white supremacy, which is written into the DNA, which is how we were born,

which made this country possible.

                But I do think -- I do think what is possible is to act within the

knowledge of it, to be aware of it.  If one realizes that one is an

alcoholic, and one realizes that one must struggle with that for the rest

of their life, one can

act accordingly to that and can put themselves in a situation where they

can be in recovery of that, where they can live their life despite that

being a factor.

                Transcend this, though, I don`t know that that`s possible.

                HAYES:  There`s a moment in the book that`s incredibly powerful, it`s

about a young man who was shot and killed by police in Montgomery County in


                COATES:  Prince George`s County, you had it right, Prince George`s


                HAYES:  I`m sorry, in Prince George`s County.

                HAYES:  It`s a little confusing because his name is Prince.

                COATES:  that`s right.

                And he was a classmate of yours at Howard.  And you talk about just

the sheer grief and rage that had stirred in you.  And you talk about when

9/11 happened, your feeling about police was in such an intense place, that

you had a hard time feeling that emotional empathy for what was going on

with the police rushing into the building.

                CATES:  You know, it was -- I mean, it was the police, too, but

actually I have to be quite honest about how I felt you know at that -- it

was -- the victims of 9/11 period.  And the basic idea was that, you know,

9/11 was our national crime, a crime against the nation.  And there was a

specific kind of grieving that came out of that.

                But my belief then and my belief now was that the life of Prince

Jones, the body of Prince Jones was as valuable as anybody who died in the

World Trade Center.  And, yes, I had a tremendous, a tremendous amount of

anger, tremendous amount of rage at watching the national grieving that

came out of that, or turning on the football games the following week or

two weeks after and seeing, you know, this great sort of martial display

and fighter jets.

                And knowing that my friend, Prince Jones, whose family had obeyed all

the dictates that America lays down for its citizens, you know had been

followed through three jurisdictions, and had been essentially executed,

you know, within yards of his fiancee`s home, leaving his mother to deal

with that vacuum, leaving his fiancee to deal with that vacuum, leaving to

his young, you know, baby girl who never got to know her father to deal

with that vacuum.

                And the police officer who executed that action was in no way punished

for that by the jurisdiction.  In fact, was sent back out onto the street.

                Yeah, that will make you a little angry, that will tick you off a

little bit.

                HAYES:  the president gave a speech to the NAACP and talked about

criminal justice reform.  He tweeted out these stats.  And I just finally -

- do you think we`re at a moment where things are breaking up in terms of

criminal justice?

                COATSE:  Well, I can`t comment on the president`s speech. 

Regrettably, I`ve been doing press all day, so I haven`t had a chance to

review it yet, so I don`t want to sit here and try to BS you with a


                Having said that, you know I have noted that there is a great deal of

optimism, and I think that`s good.  I think people are taking a hard look

at the criminal justice system.  I don`t know that they`re taking quite a

hard enough look.

                What I understand is, you know, that the criminal -- that our prisons,

the population of our prisons has expanded roughly five fold since 1970.  I

think there`s a serious discussion that needs to be had in this country

about how we can

cut that back to 1970 levels.  And I don`t even know that that is

necessarily possible.

                And then on top of that, even when we were at those 1970 levels, the

prison system was still unequal.  You had a population in which you had

about a 5:1 ratio of black prisoners to white prisoners in the jail.  So,

even the place that we`re trying to get back to was in and of itself

unfair.  And think we need to remember that.

                HAYES:  Ta-Nehisi Coates, do what you can to read this book.  I urge

you.  Thank you very much.

                COATES:  Thank you.

                HAYES:  Be right back.

                (COMMERCIAL BREAK)


                HAYES:  We`re crisscrossing the state of California all week, bringing

you special stories on water wars and the drought here.  And you can follow

all of that great reporting we`re doing on Facebook/AllInwithChris.  Stay

tuned for more.

                (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

                HAYES:  Last year when President Obama came out west to talk about the

drought, he came to California`s central valley and to Joe Del Bosque`s

farm, where Del Bosque grows everything from cantaloupe to the highly

controversial and highly profitable almond, a crop that requires about a

gallon of water for every single nut.

                Right now in the face of an unprecedented water shortage, farmers like

Del Bosque have to make choices about what they grow.  40 percent of his

fields are fallow, or unplanted.  That has big implications not only for

Del Bosque, but for the workers he employs.

                To better under the situation, I traveled to the central valley, a

unique desert landscape where much of the nation`s fruits and vegetables

are grown, one of the most productive patches of agriculture in the world. 

And that kind of productivity requires a lot of water.

                (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)


                HAYES:  The kind of agriculture here in the central valley is

different than almost anywhere else, right?  I mean, not wheat, not corn,

not big the sort of commodities, you`re growing specialty products.

                JOE DEL BOSQUE, FARMER:  That`s exactly right.

                California agriculture is a collection of specialty crops.  We grow 50

percent of the fruits, nuts and vegetables in the country.

                HAYES: So what have you got, cantaloupes here?

                DEL BOSQUE:  Cantaloupes.  We grow 75 percent of the cantaloupes in

the country.  And during the summer, we probably grow 90 percent of the

cantaloupes in

the country.

                HAYES:  And these kinds of crops, the kinds of stuff like almonds,

which you`ve got, cantaloupes, they -- this is the climate they need.  They

don`t want rain, right?

                DEL BOSQUE:  They don`t like rain during their season, no.  They like

-- they`re like the people in California.  We like the sun all summer long. 

We like it warm.  And the crops are the same way.

                See, these are Mediterranean climate crops.  They love hot, dry

weather.  If it rains on these crops, they get sick and die.

                HAYES:  And the reason you can grow them is because it doesn`t rain.

                DEL BOSQUE:  Because it doesn`t rain.

                HAYES:  That`s what people have to understand.  It`s all here, and

you`re all

doing this because the sky looks like this, because the earth is dry like


                DEL BOSQUE:  Yes.

                HAYES:  That`s the way the whole thing works.

                DEL BOSQUE:  That`s the way -- once we plant, we hope there`s no rain

after that.  We want the rain in the winter.  We want it in the mountains

400 miles away.  That`s where they capture it and bring it to us, because

these crops, because they`re not going to get any rain, they need water so

we irrigate them.

                HAYES:  This stuff is hand picked.

                DEL BOSQUE:  It`s all hand picked.  Literally all our fresh fruits and

vegetables are hand picked in California.  That`s why we have a lot of

labor that we value very highly, because it all has to be done by hand. 

These people are actually very skilled at this work.

                HAYES:  And just to be clear, you used to do this?

                DEL BOSQUE:  I used to do this.

                HAYES:  You grew up doing this.

                DEL BOSQUE:  Yes.  My father was doing this in the `30s and `40s.  And

I grew up doing this.

                HAYES:  Literally doing this, literally picking cantaloupes.

                DEL BOSQUE:  Literally picking.  He was a melon picker in the `30s and

`40s.  I did this as a boy in the late `50s and `60s.  And I grew up on a

farm doing all this work.  This was my education to become a farmer.

                HAYES:  This is the water that makes those cantaloupes possible,


                DEL BOSQUE:  That`s correct.  This is our water supply.

                HAYES:  And where does the water come from?

                DEL BOSQUE:  This comes from about 400 miles away in the north part of 

California in Shasta reservoir.

                HAYES:  Most of the water that falls in California, most of the

precipitation, snow pack in the Sierra Nevadas, up north, right?

                DEL BOSQUE:  Yes.

                HAYES:  How does it get down here?

                DEL BOQUE:  First of all, it`s captured up there in reservoirs like

ours is Shasta.  It`s allowed to flow down the river, down at the delta,

which is the estuary, it`s picked up in pumps and then from there on, it`s

brought to us by canals. 

                HAYES:  Like this.

                DEL BOSQUE:  Like this.  Bigger than this.

                HAYES:  And who runs that?

                DEL BOSQUE:  There`s two projects.  Ours is the central valley project

run by the federal government.  And then there is a state water project run

by the state.

                HAYES:  Now my understanding is the state project is largely for

cities, for consumption, for just folks, office buildings, things like

that.  And the central valley project is the agricultural architecture?

                DEL BOSQUE:  Exactly.  The central valley project was built for


                Later on, other cities like Silicon Valley get some of their water

from the central valley project.

                Then the state water project was built primarily for cities,

especially Southern California.  But they also feed a few farms along the


                HAYES:  So this field is fallow.

                DEL BOSQUE:  Yes, it is.

                HAYES:  And that`s because of water?

                DEL BOSQUE:  Yes, for a lack of water.

                If we had water, we would have probably planted this in tomatoes.  It

had cantaloupes a couple of years ago.  Very good soil.  And it`s -- we

just don`t have water for it.

                HAYES:  There`s flood irrigation, right, and then there`s drip


                DEL BOSQUE:  Yes.

                HAYES:  You guys used to use flood irrigation and now use drip


                DEL BOSQUE:  Yes.

                HAYES:  what`s the difference?  Explain the difference.

                DEL BOSQUE:  The difference is that flood irrigation goes on the top

of the surface, and you have no control about how much water the land


                Now, it goes under the surface.  we have a drip hose here.

This drip hose begins at the other end of the field, it comes down the

center of the row, and we can control every drop.  We can meter how much

water we want there.

                HAYES:  So, it used to be you just poured the water on to the field?

                DEL BOSQUE:  Yes, basically.

                HAYES:  That does seem wasteful.

                DEL BOSQUE:  Yeah, it was wasteful.

                And I can tell you that on cantaloupes, where we used to use -- and we

were trying to be efficient, OK, we didn`t waste water -- we were using

2.25, 2.3 acre feet per acre.  With the drip now, we use 1.5 to 1.7.

                HAYES:  Oh, wow.

                DEL BOSQUE:  We`ve saved a lot.  And guess what?  We increased our

yield by over 30 percent.

                HAYES:  So you`ve -- what you`ve done using drip irrigation is reduced

water consumption by about 30 percent, increased yield by 30 percent?

                DEL BOSQUE:  Yes.

                HAYES:  But there`s nothing left to squeeze out, right?  You`re

operating at peak efficiency.

                DEL BOSQUE:  We are.

                I mean, this field, 53 acres, has drip irrigation in it.  I got a

$50,000 investment here, and I have no water to put in the drip system.

                HAYES:  There has been an absolute boom in all this.

                DEL BOSQUE:  yes.

                HAYES: What does that look like here in the central valley?  How can

you tell the almonds are booming?

                DEL BOSQUE:  The price doesn`t come down, it continues to get

stronger, that`s what tells us that the market is strong.

                HAYES:  And does that affect planting decisions?

                DEL BOSQUE:  It does.  It does.  If people are making more money at

almonds, they`ll plant more almonds and take something else out.

                HAYES:  Is that what`s happening?

                DEL BOSQUE:  Yes.  You have -- I see guys that are taking out grapes,

planting almonds.  They`re taking out alfalfa and planting almonds, even

pistachios, which is another nut crop, they`re taking out other crops and

planting pistachios.

                People are crazy about nuts.  They want almonds, they want pistachios,

they want walnuts.  Why?  Because they like to put them in their food now.

                You know, when I was a kid, we had a salad, it was just some iceberg

and dressing.  Now, you want nuts in it, you want grapefruits in it, you

want berries in it, right?

                HAYES:  Yeah.  And that`s good for you.

                DEL BOSQUE:  that`s good for us because that`s what we grow in


                HAYES;  Right. 

                DEL BOSQUE:  Under irrigation, and they take water.

                HAYES:  Every salad is a central valley salad.

                DEL BOSQUE:  Exactly.

                (END VIDEOTAPE)

                HAYES:  Up next, my interview with the mayor of Los Angeles on how his

city is adapting to the new normal.

                (COMMERCAIL BREAK)

                HAYES:  After California`s snow pack fell to record low levels this

past winter, governor Jerry Brown announced mandatory reductions in water

use for the first time in the state`s history, a 25 percent cutback for

each of California`s local water supply agencies, which served nine out of

ten residents in the state.

                Now that`s brought changes not just to the central valley and other

agricultural areas, but also to cities and towns.

                Today, I visited California`s largest city, Los Angeles, where I

talked with mayor Eric Garcetti.

                (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

                HAYES:  Here with Mayor Garcetti of Los Angeles, great to be here.

                ERIC GARCETTI, MAYOR OF LOS ANGELES:  Thank you.

                HAYES:  In your fine city.

                GARCETTI:  Welcome to L.A.  Sorry about the great weather.

                HAYES:  Yeah.  So, while we have got this lovely water feature behind

us in eco-park, which is the neighborhood you actually live in, right?

                GARCETTI:  Yes, that`s where we have a house there.

                HAYES:  So the governor announced these mandatory reductions, 25



                GARCETTI:  Yup.

                HAYES:  And it`s a little hard to put together.  Like, what does that

actually mean? 

                So, the governor says that, and then you run a city that has a water

district.  And like how does that happen?  How do you get that to reality?

                GARCETTI:  Well, you know, we`re actually quite experienced with this

in L.A.  We`ve added in the last 45 years a million residents to L.A.

without having to consume a single drop of water more.  So, it`s changing.

                HAYES:  Is that true?

                GARCETTI:  It`s true.  We have a million more people.  We went from 3

million to 4 million people in the last 45 years, and we consume the same

amount of water today that we did back then.

                Because there`s so much water wasted.  When people say, are you

focused on the drought?  I say, yes, but I`m not stressed.  I think we have

plenty of water here.  We waste way too much water in the faucets we use,

the appliances that we have, the landscaping we put in the back of our

homes.  The sprinklers that go off in the middle of the day are too many

times a week.

                There`s plenty of water to live and to sustain life, you just have to

kind of get smarter about how you use it.

                HAYES:  So, when you talked about a few of those things, right, let`s

say appliances, for instance.  OK, that`s a thing that`s structural.  So,

someone buys a house that has got the appliances.

                GARCETTI:  Yup.

                HAYES:  When -- if the governor says 20 percent mandated reduction,

you can`t

tell people to switch out their appliances, right?

                GARCETTI:  No.

                HAYES:  So, does that get implemented from year to year, quarter to


                HAYES:  So, people know that we`ll actually for instance replace some

of their appliances, or give them incentives.  We`ll actually sometimes pay

for them to come in with a better washer or dryer.  We`ll give them -- like

right now is this weekend at a department of water and power, which is open

on a Saturday, and we were giving out aerators that you put on the faucets

so that you use maybe a 1/3 of the water just to wash your hands.

                People don`t realize how much you waste.  And 50 percent of our water

usage in the residential environment is our backyards and front yards.

                HAYES:  That`s 50 percent.

                GARCETTI:  50 percent.  And I would say, where there`s lawns like

this, where there is grass where people use them, great.  Keep the grass. 

We want it.

                But I would say 90 percent of grass never gets walked on.

                HAYES:  So, you have got all this sort of full spectrum ways of kind

of pushing that consumption down, right, mostly through not wasting.

                One of the sort of central lines of conflict, and sometimes I think

people feel like more is made of it than maybe is there, but you really do

hear it, about the sort of farmer city, right?  So, we were in the central

valley over the weekend, and really there is a sense there that like we use

this water for productive use.  It is our livelihood.  And all these sort

of big city liberals complain about us, and they don`t know what they`re

talking about.

                GARCETTI:  Well, you know, there is plenty of water actually for

farmers and city folk.  But let`s not pretend we all don`t have something

to do to conserve

better, I mean, whether it`s farmers moving towards drip irrigation and


                HAYES:  But if I could interrupt you, there`s not plenty of water for


                GARCETTI:  There is.  If you look at the number -- like take the city

of L.A.

we wash out 60 percent of the equivalent of our daily water use to the

ocean every day, pretty much treated to a drinkable standard.

                Imagine if we just recycled some of that back into the city, which

we`re now

doing.  85 percent of our water is imported.  If we do a better job,

there`s more water in the central valley for folks.  And if people aren`t

doing flood irrigation in a state that should have more intelligent

irrigation, then you can sustain agriculture sector, too.

                We could probably take half as much water and continue the industries

and life in the state if we were at our maximum efficiency.

                HAYES:  So, you don`t -- you feel confident, this sort of zero sum

battle for resources, which has been intensified by the drought but is

already there, right, always.  That that`s a surmountable problem, even if

the drought continues?

                GARCETTI:  Absolutely.

                HAYES:  Even in an era of climate change.

                GARCETTI:  And it`s a false dichotomy, too.

                I mean, turning city folk against rural folk is not -- California,


in it together.  And we, for instance, just made peace with Owens Valley. 

You ever watch Chinatown?  You know, we steal their water?  After hundreds

of years of

fighting with them, we made peace, that will return more water to them,

more water to us and not use it to try to do stupid things like mitigate

dust on a dry lake


                That took decades, over 100 years of negotiation.  But it`s going to

be better for them and the agriculture needs they have and for us.

                HAYES:  And what allowed that, a deal like that, what allows that to

happen?  Is that innovation, is that technology, is that getting smarter

where we use water?

                GARCETTI:  No, it`s good old fashion negotiations.  Plus, we saw

better technology that we know a way to mitigate the dust that the in the

dry lake bed up there, but also take that water that was just being

literally thrown on there every month, evaporated mostly, and return some

of it to the city and some of it to them for agriculture use.

                HAYES:  There is this TIME magazine cover about the drought that a lot

of people in California reacted negativity to, because it was sort of like

is this the end of the California dream?  Is this the end of this project,

this unsustainable, you know, civilization of the desert.

                What`s your response to that?

                GARCETTI:  I think there`s this deep, dark desire for people, whether

it`s fires, riots, earthquakes or drought, that California somehow is on

the verge of being destroyed and breaking off.

                HAYES:  Like it is an abomination in some way, and like the lord will

bring down his wrath?

                GARCETTI:  Maybe it`s that we`re too progressive on too many things

and like the lord is going to come and punish us.

                But we actually are a state that mirrors a lot of what the challenges

are in the country.  And I think we never let a crisis go to waste.  We`re

creating jobs out of this, we`re seeing landscapers come in and tear up

this grass and create hundreds of jobs.

                We`re seeing people who are being innovative in terms of how the

technology they use to recycle water, create energy.

                So, I`m kind of excited by this drought.  I wish it weren`t here, but

new normal is something that we absolutely can sustain, whether it`s the

central valley farmer or whether it`s right here in the urban core.

                HAYES:  All right, Nick Garcetti, really a pleasure.

                GARCETTI:  Thank you.

                HAYES:  Thank you.  My pleasure, too.  Thanks.

                (END VIDEOTAPE)

                HAYES:  That was my interview with Mayor Eric Garcetti.  We`re going

to have more from California.  We`re crisscrossing the state, we`re working

all day.  Stay with us all week.  And also, since I`m here, happy

anniversary babe  I love you. Best decision I ever made.

                All right, that is All In for this evening.




<Copy: Content and programming copyright 2015 NBC.  ALL RIGHTS  RESERVED.

Copyright 2015 CQ-Roll Call, Inc.  All materials herein are protected by

United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed,

transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written

permission of CQ-Roll Call. You may not alter or remove any trademark,

copyright or other notice from copies of the content.>

Sponsored links

Resource guide