Top of the show
The show opened with Anderson Cooper, thankfully back from Afghanistan, staring characteristically into the camera in a frame that seems just a little cramped. This show had not one, not two, but three panel discussions on issues from racism, Joe Wilson, and medical malpractice. The show was very fast-paced tonight and jam-packed with news (quite unlike the Afghan bathroom reporting of last week). Quite a bit of Breaking News, too.
10:00: Waiting for announcement from Yale regarding the detainment of a suspect in the murder of Annie Le.
Former President Jimmy Cartersaid that racism is behind much of the animosity towards President Obama. AC gives us the deep insight that racism still exists in America.
10:05 : Demonstrating the fact that nothing divides this country like race, Anderson opens a panel discussion between Mark Williams, organizer of the Tea Party Express and Roland S. Martin, a CNN political analyst. It is a curious selection of panelists: one white Republican and one black Democrat. Did anybody think this was going to yield anything but bickering? Thanks to rolandsmartin.com for the video!
I was unable to capture the interview (hardware isn’t here yet), so I’ll hope that CNN posts the video tomorrow. In the event that the interviews don’t make it up, I tried to summarize:
Mark Williams: Racism is absolutely not a factor in anti-Obama sentiment or the Tea Party Express. Editor’s note: Look at this picture of the rally. Conduct your own demographic analysis
Roland S. Martin: Race is clearly a factor. Glen Beck said that President Obama hates white people. There has been a 400% increase in threats against the President’s life.
Mark: Roland, you’re practicing hyperbole! These death threats are a result of the fact that the Obama administration is trying to steal from everyday Americans and borrow from the Chinese to undermine this country. Obama, don’t apologize for me.
Roland: Well, George W. Bush
Mark: ROLAND ROLAND ROLAND
Roland: Well, George W. Bush
Mark: ROLAND ROLAND ROLAND
Anderson Cooper: Look, it’s no use talking over each other; the viewers will just turn the show off. Go on, Roland.
Roland: Obama inherited this economic turmoil from George W. Bush.
AC: (to Roland) Several people called George W. Bush a Nazi. Is this as serious as that?
Roland: Different points of view give different truths. There are things that a white person can know that a black person can’t and vice versa.
Mark: What was racist in my taking part in the unseating of Doolittle? Since I’ve been angry at white people, too, how can I be racist? Tax parties started against Bush. Obama came in with fertilizer and “czar nuts.” Really, I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried.
Roland: Race has not left this country. We have to be willing to call people out.
AC: (to Mark) You have said that the racist element is a small fringe element in the Tea Party Express. Lots of media attention is given to their signs, including the witch doctor sign.
AC: (still to Mark) Given the option, would you tell the people in the Tea Parties to avoid using such signs.
Roland: Have you?
Mark: I don’t mandate to people what they should believe. I’m not a race-baiter like Roland, Jesse Jackson, or Al Sharpton.
I really hope some video from this interview is posted on the website. I’ll keep an eye on Youtube.
Capitol Waste of Time – Joe Johns
In the midst of the economic downfall, health care crisis, education speeches, and Kanye West, the most raw of all raw politics is Joe Wilson shouting, “You lie.” Some people think that the whole discussion of Joe Wilson is a waste of time. Joe Jones interviewed a Democratic representative, who said that he didn’t think it wise to spend a great deal of time on this issue. The interview was not particulary interesting, but the protestor in the background was. Again, I really hope I can find a clip or some footage. He sign said something about saying no to beer summits and yes to prayer.
AC asked Joe why the Democrats went through this long ordeal when none really wanted to. The answer: fund raising.
Panel discussion number 2! We’ve got Alex Castellanos and Paul Begala discussing Joe Wilson, even though AC had just implicitly agreed that the debate over Joe Wilson was a waste of time. This debate was less exciting than the first, so we’ll get a synopsis rather than a play-by-play.
The best point of Alex Castellanos was that if we are going to demonize someone for saying “you lie” to someone else, then the President is eqully culpable. Here’s a link to the speech. Search for “It’s a lie”. Anderson, then, called Alex out for equating Obama’s refutation of death panels to Joe Wilson’s outcry. Alex’s key quote is: “Democrats say weird things like…’Bush allowed planes to fly into the 9/11.'” Again, couldn’t have plucked that one from my imagination even if I wanted to.
Paul Begala didn’t have much to say about Joe Wilson, but once the discussion shifted to the Tea Party Express and accusations of racism, he chimed in by saying that “part of opposition is having the courage to purge the movement of the crazies.” Yes, he used the word crazies. He hearkened back to one of Kanye West’s early exploits, that of saying that George W. Bush didn’t care about black people. Go to 1:35 and watch the horror.
10:30: Teaser for police press conference in New Haven. Instead…
Police have not yet made an arrest in the case, but they have taken someone into custody. His name is Raymond Clark. Clark is not officially a suspect, but is a person of interest.
During this segment, 3 pictures of Le kept looping on the screen. In one she was learning forward towards the camera, hunched over what might have been her lunch. The police said that there are over 700 hours of video to search through and loads of evidence to sort, so they are not yet comfortable announcing Clark as a suspect (even though he was later shown being led away in handcuffs). Part of the hesitance is due to the fact that the lab in which Le was working was an animal lab and was thus filled with mouse DNA.
Digging Deeper…and deeper
Panel discussion #3. Dr. Cyril Wecht and Jack Levin. Thankfully, both men agreed on most points. Annie Le’s killer must have known the building, because they body was found in a wall and the clothes in a ceiling. The killer probably had a routine because nobody was seen rushing out. A burglar, on the other hand, would flee the scene of the crime. Dr. Wecht said that the only reason that Raymond Clark hasn’t been formally charged is that Yale was hasty to accuse a professor in a case a few years ago and ruined his life, even though he was innocent.
10:39 Police have stormed the apartment of Raymond Clark.
In the second part of the talk, Anderson asked why the police hadn’t released the autopsy report. Dr. Wecht answered that usually the police hold off on releasing records until after they get statements from the suspects. Levin said that he believed the murder was tied to Le’s upcoming wedding, but Wecht wouldn’t go that far.
Police searching property of Phil Garrido – Dan Simonn
Police are looking for evidence that may tie Phil and Nancy Garrido to two kidnappings from20 years ago. Jaycee Dugard and one of the other abducted children looked similar back then and a drawing of suspect in that disapperance is eerily similar to Garrido at the time.
News and Business Bulletin with Erica Hill
* Ben Bernake says that the recession is very likely over Yay!
* Former speechwriter for George W. Bush recalls him saying, re Sarah Palin, “I’m trying to remember if I’ve met her before. Is she the governor of Guam?”
Of Obama: “No clue, I promise you.”
Of Hillary Clinton: “Wait til her fat keister is sitting here.”
* Obama on Kanye West: He’s a jackass.
* Jessica Simpson’s dog snatched by a coyote. Offering a reward.
10:53: Pictures of Raymond Clark in handcuffs. He’s a big guy in a white t-shirt.
Medical Malpractice: Who Pays?
Medical mistakes are more deadly than breast cancer. What can be done to prevent this while still saving money for Obama’s healthcare plan?
Here Gary talks with 2 top insurance lawyers. I didn’t catch their names, but it’s not important. We might as well call them “the insurance lawyers who speak with once voice.” Their basic point, which they made while sitting comfortably in expensive suits, is that the government should stay out of insurance or else instead of unnecessary medical expenses, which are used to stave off medical malpractice claims, we’re going to see medical negligence instead.
All in all, an action-packed show.