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Bear in Mind Conversations with the Chancellor  

Chancellor Berdahl

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Episodes hosted by previous chancellor Robert M. Berdahl


Produced by the Office of Public Affairs in association with SNP Communications. Web streaming provided by Educational Technology Services.
Steven Weber, Bruce Cain, Tom Campbell and Chancellor Berdahl tape Bear in Mind

Episode 17, April 23, 2004

Watch Bear in Mind on UCTV
UCTV will broadcast this Election Special episode of Bear in Mind each day during the week of May 24. See UCTV's schedule for specific Bear in Mind airtimes, or visit the on-demand archive of past videotaped episodes. (UCTV is carried on Comcast Channel 33 in Berkeley.)

In a special election edition of Bear in Mind, Chancellor Robert M. Berdahl conducts a lively roundtable discussion with three campus experts on the political scene: Steven Weber, associate professor of political science and director of the MacArthur Program on Multilateral Governance at Berkeley's Institute of International Studies; Bruce Cain, Robson professor of political science, and director of the Institute of Governmental Studies; and Tom Campbell, dean of the Haas School of Business and former five-time congressman representing Silicon Valley. At the end of the program, Berdahl shares what's on the Top of his Mind: the need informed, insightful discussion of issues in a democracy.

The audio-only interviews below are in RealOne Player format (see these links for downloading the free version of the software). Have a suggestion for a topic or a guest? E-mail bearshow@berkeley.edu.


Hear the entire episode from start to finish ...
48:51 minutes

audio Introduction
1:16 minutes

International affairs: The Iraq effect
14:22 minutes

What impact will the turmoil in Iraq have on the presidential election? Will continued fighting and more U.S. casualties drag down President Bush, or will voters rally around the sitting president? And will the administration be asked — and be able — to justify its actions in Iraq?

Bruce Cain making a point

The terrorism wild card
2:41 minutes

A pre-election terrorist attack against U.S. interests could be politically advantageous for the administration, making it difficult for Democrats to position themselves as a credible and stronger alternative. Or it could leave voters with the impression that the Bush team has failed to make the country safer, despite four years and plentiful resources. In Professor Weber's words, "Al-Qaida is without question the single most important voter in this election."

Steven Weber (L) addresses the issue

Character counts
4:44 minutes

A candidate's character is a crucial factor in modern elections, often overriding the importance of issues and policies. Dean Campbell argues that that isn't all bad — issues may come and go, but character remains.


It's the economy, stupid
8:55 minutes

The panelists agree that the state of the economy has traditionally been the #1 domestic issue when an incumbent president seeks re-election. And this economy may get boiled down to a single statistic: Is unemployment better or worse than when President Bush took office? If so, look for the return of Herbert Hoover to the political equation. Also, what has happened to the once fiscally disciplined Republicans on the issue of the deficit? "I weep for my party," says former GOP congressman Campbell.

Tom Campbell

Return of the Patriot Act
6:28 minutes

The Patriot Act has ridden roughshod over many of the civil liberties Americans have long cherished, and the administration may have a hard time identifying benefits that have come from those costs. But one more terrorist attack could make the Patriot Act seem tame, as the public opts for promises of security over the "legal niceties" of civil liberties.

Bruce Cain, Tom Campbell, Chancellor Berdahl

The rest of the field
3:42 minutes

What other issues will matter in this year's election? The environment? Gay marriage? Abortion rights and the future makeup of the Supreme Court stand out as a serious concern, especially to women.

Bruce Cain and Tom Campbell
audio Prediction time
3:05 minutes

As of April, who will win in November? Or will it be so close and so contested again that no one will really be sure?
audio Top of Mind
3:36 minutes

Character vs. issues: Does informed, insightful discussion still matter in elections? If, as Dean Campbell says, "explaining is losing" in politics, it's a sad and distressing notion. Elections in a democratic society should be about explaining. How candidates explain their actions, their values and their plans for leadership should be the basis for our vote.
Chancellor Berdahl

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