Frank Zarb visits the Ford School to talk about energy policy and President Ford's legacy and imprint on the Ford School.
>> Mr. Speaker, Mr. Vice President, members of the 94th Congress, the State of the Union is not good.>> When President Ford spoke those words at the 1975 State of the Union Address, it signaled an honesty in the Executive Branch to which the country was not accustomed. >> The only way to talk about Ford is to talk about things like integrity and trust.>> It is just a great honor to be able to introduce to you Mr. Frank Zarb.>> Having served as the Energy Tsar during the Ford Administration, Frank Zarb came to the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy to engage with students in discussions about the president, ethics and energy strategy.>> In terms of oil with so much oil coming from Canada nowadays, do you see coal and the tar sands in Canada for oil as important parts of American's energy independence now?>> Yes, the formula's changed somewhat.>> Today, more than ever, we need political leaders who care about what's right and are prepared to take pain because what right is not politically popular.>> How do we counter public fear of radiation and basically how easy it is to quantify the risks of nuclear energy as opposed to other energies?>> There are things that nuclear power do for the country that are very good for the American people. It helps get us off oil; secondly it's very good for the environment. Nuclear power, which was part of the Ford Program, has some real benefits. Nothing is risk-free but it's getting to be very close and the regulatory regime around nuclear power.>> Part of the failure and the lack of trust within the public is the failure of the government to regulate and [inaudible].>> It's going to take courageous political and public service thinking to surface the options and then cause the body politic to make a selection.>> The government's role in nuclear power has mostly been on the research side and if anything on subsidizing loans or guaranteeing loans. What role do you think the U.S. Government should play to bring about this change in our electricity plans?>> Well, first of all, the initial decision to do it and the political decision to do it. They are obviously smart young people or they wouldn't be here. They are at a stage in life where they really want to do the right thing.>> Can we use the context of our relations with Iran or the debt crisis to kind of facilitate an energy policy?>> The crisis, as long as it lasts -- this is the time for them to understand that to do the right thing, you know, oftentimes going to have to take some of the hard medicine and there's no other way to do it. So I see these young minds thinking in those terms. The most unforgettable part of Ford was the quality of his character and personality. He was just a good human being in the sense that here, this school seems to have adopted a culture that emphasizes harmony and team that you don't see in many places. I do pick up that vibration and I think its' very, very valuable. Ford approached the issues honestly and surfaced them honestly. He set the stage, now we need the young people here to take it over the finish line. ^M00:03:42[ Music ]^M00:03:52