Courting Disaster: The Fight for Oil, Water and a Healthy Planet
Stanford President John Hennessy, journalist Carlos Watson, and a panel of leading figures in international affairs, energy development, media, and government joined an audience of more than 5,500 people in Maples Pavilion for the second annual Roundtable at Stanford University.
The wide-ranging discussion covered issues such as America's role in the world, the war in Iraq and unrest in the Middle East, terrorism and nuclear proliferation, the upcoming presidential election and climate change.
John P. Abizaid retired from the United States Army after 34 years, during which he rose from an infantry platoon leader to become the youngest four-star general in the Army and the longest-serving commander of United States Central Command.
General Abizaid is a highly decorated officer who has been awarded numerous service medals and holds military honors from Germany, France, Poland, Bulgaria, Romania, Australia, Afghanistan and Egypt. In June 2007, he returned to the Hoover Institution as the Annenberg Distinguished Visiting Fellow.
Justice Stephen G. Breyer
Stephen G. Breyer, Associate Justice, was born in San Francisco, California, August 15, 1938.
He received an A.B. from Stanford University, a B.A. from Magdalen College, Oxford, and an LL.B. from Harvard Law School. He served as a law clerk to Justice Arthur Goldberg of the Supreme Court of the United States during the 1964 Term, as a Special Assistant to the Assistant U.S. Attorney General for Antitrust, 1965-1967, as an Assistant Special Prosecutor of the Watergate Special Prosecution Force, 1973, as Special Counsel of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, 1974-1975, and as Chief Counsel of the committee, 1979-1980.
He was an Assistant Professor, Professor of Law, and Lecturer at Harvard Law School, 1967-1994, a Professor at the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government, 1977-1980, and a Visiting Professor at the College of Law, Sydney, Australia and at the University of Rome.
From 1980-1990, he served as a Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, and as its Chief Judge, 1990-1994. He also served as a member of the Judicial Conference of the United States, 1990-1994, and of the United States Sentencing Commission, 1985-1989.
President Clinton nominated him as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, and he took his seat August 3, 1994.
John E. Bryson, â€™65, is chairman, president and CEO of Edison International, the parent company of Southern California Edison, a regulated electric utility, and Edison Mission Group, a competitive power generation business. Before joining Edison in 1984, Bryson was a partner in the law firm Morrison and Foerster. Previously, he served as president of the California Public Utilities Commission, chairman of the California State Water Resources Control Board and was co-founder of the Natural Resources Defense Council. He earned his JD from Yale Law School.
Thomas L. Friedman
Thomas L. Friedman is an internationally renowned author, reporter, and columnist. His foreign affairs column in The New York Times, which appears twice a week, reports on US domestic politics and foreign policy, Middle East conflict, international economics, the environment, biodiversity, and energy. He is the recipient of three Pulitzer Prizes and the author of six best-selling books: From Beirut to Jerusalem; The Lexus and the Olive Tree: Understanding Globalization; Longitudes and Attitudes: Exploring the World After September 11; The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century; and Hot, Flat, and Crowded: Why We Need A Green Revolution – And How It Can Renew America. His most recent book, That Used to Be Us: How American Fell Behind in the World We Invented and How We Can Come Back, is co-written with Michael Mandelbaum.
John L. Hennessy is Stanford University's 10th president and inaugural holder of the Bing Presidential Professorship, professor of computer science and electrical engineering, former provost and dean of the School of Engineering. Recognizing the need for multidisciplinary research to address today's challenges, he has launched university-wide initiatives in human health, environmental sustainability, and international affairs.
Pamela Matson is the Chester Naramore Dean of the School of Earth Sciences, the Richard and Rhoda Goldman Professor of Environmental Studies and the Burton and Deedee McMurtry University Fellow in Undergraduate Education. As a leader among scientists working to reconcile the needs of people and the environment in the 21st century, she works with multi-disciplinary teams of researchers and decision makers to develop land management approaches that are economically and environmentally sound. A MacArthur Fellow and Fellow of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Science, she is the founding co-chair of the National Academies Roundtable on Science and Technology for Sustainability.
Carlos Watson, JD '95, a former political analyst for CNN, currently heads a venture-backed television production company in New York. Watson was editor of the Stanford Law Review and student government president while at Stanford. His broadcast work includes two prime-time interview shows on CNBC, a hosting role at BET and three years of political analysis at CNN, where he covered the 2004 presidential elections. Watson has interviewed everyone from Oprah Winfrey and Heidi Klum to Arnold Schwarzenegger and Hillary Clinton. His breakout show, Conversations with Carlos Watson, premiered this year and was hailed as "the next generation of talk."
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer discusses the responsibilities of the Judiciary during wartime.
This excerpt is taken from a Stanford University roundtable discussion entitled Courting Disaster: The Fight for Oil, Water and a Healthy Planet, featuring panelists John Abizaid, Thomas L. Friedman, Stephen Breyer, and others.