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July 31, 2009

BILL MOYERS: Here at the Journal, we enjoy hearing your feedback. So tonight we turn again to some of the thought-provoking comments we've received from viewers like you in recent weeks. In April we heard from former regulator William K. Black, who argued that the American economy was brought down not just by greed and incompetence in the financial sector, but by fraud.

WILLIAM K. BLACK: Fraud is deceit. And the essence of fraud is, "I create trust in you, and then I betray that trust, and get you to give me something of value." And as a result, there's no more effective acid against trust than fraud.

BILL MOYERS: Here are some of your comments.

DAVID YOUNG:As a conservative, I honestly have never really known what I believe regarding "regulation." I've always deemed it a scary, hairy, monster that keeps economic growth at bay. However, in light of recent times I'm finding that I am required to open my mind a bit...I appreciate your interview with Mr. Black as a hopeful catalyst for changing this current world.

ALLEN LEE: I listened to the Bill Black interview and was not really surprised but certainly disturbed by the blatant disregard and self-serving mindset of powerful men in powerful places...I can only hope that justice finds a way to be served.

BILL MOYERS: My conversation with David Simon, the creator of the acclaimed HBO series "The Wire," prompted viewers to share their thoughts on crime in our nation's cities and on the future of journalism.

DAVID SIMON: As a reporter I got to see the war on drugs, I got to see policing as a concept, and I got to see journalism. You see how interconnected things are. How connected the performance of the school system is to the culture of the corner.

RICHARD SENFT: Mr. Moyers' interview with David Simon of "The Wire" was an outstanding analysis of what is wrong with our cities, schools, drug policies, and economy. If only our public dialogue were of this depth and clarity, we would be well on our way to solving these problems.

KATHY DALY: I was struck by David Simon's comments that we were not asking the hard questions about where we are and how we got that way. He may mistakenly believe that he is somehow operating outside these institutionalized structures, but isn't he more a part of the problem by feeding that profit-making system and presenting these critical issues to the public as some kind of pop-cultural cookie?

BILL MOYERS: And finally, a few weeks ago the sociologist Sara Lawrence-Lightfoot spoke with me about what she calls "The Third Chapter," and the need to change our attitudes toward aging.

SARA LAWRENCE-LIGHTFOOT: All of us, at this point, to some degree, I think, are on a search for meaningfulness, for purposefulness. And we want to find what this next 25 years, this, in fact, penultimate chapter of our life is going to be about. And we're ready for something new, for a new experience, for a new adventure.

J.B. HUNT: I turn 50 next month. Dr. Lawrence-Lightfoot's interview provided me with a framework for moving forward with zest and vitality, rather than doubt and fear. Thanks a million and one.

CHARLES FIELD: The interview with Sara-Lawrence Lightfoot was inspiring and captivating. Her observations about the inquiring mind are what true leadership is all about. The willingness to listen to others, to be open to persuasion, to invite others into our conversations, lay the foundations for an ethical and healthy democracy.

ELLEN GRYBECK: At 72, I too am searching for a meaningful life...but I plan on many more good years. Why say The Third Chapter ends at 75? The desire for a meaningful life, through personal challenges or giving of ones self are always with us.

BILL MOYERS: Keep telling us about what you think of the Journal — by mail, e-mail, or on the blog at and we'll keep reading.
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