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tv   American Morning  CNN  August 31, 2011 3:00am-6:00am PDT

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factory orders, all this leading up to the government jobs report. dow futures on cnnmoney.com up about 12 1/2. >> what are the big headlines on cnn money? >> well, this one -- this is going to blow your mind. banks are waving fees. don't adjust your tv. you heard right. banks waving fees in hurricane irene aftermath. basically a lot of the big banks they're waving fees for people in the 13 states affected by irene, everything from atmatm f chase letting you withdraw money from a cd without a penalty fee. >> for this day, thank you, mr. banker. carter evans, thanks so much. "american morning" continues right now. the storm long gone, the suffering far from over. i'm christine romans. people running from their homes along rivers and returning to destruction along the beach. all in the wake of hurricane
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irene. >> north texas is burning. i'm ali velshi, about 30 homes already destroyed bay wildfire. 100 more in harm's way. it's going to get worse before it gets better because officials say this fast-spreading fire is 0% contained. and i'm carol costello. new developments out of aruba in the disappearance of american robyn gardener. her traveling companion and the chief suspect may be about to walk on this "american morning." good morning, everyone. it is wednesday, august 31st. welcome to "american morning." >> continues to be a busy morning. >> sure does. >> we continue to deal with the aftereffects of irene. talk about that. disaster on a delay in some places. several hundred people now evacuated in new jersey as flooding continues three days after hurricane irene tore through. residents say it's the worst they've ever seen. in vermont, a dozen towns cut
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off by flooding had supplies air lifted in. more than 250 roadways cut off by high water and the layers of mud it left behind when it went down. and in connecticut, shoreline communities are in shambles. look at these pictures, homes torn to shreds, the force of irene bending steele, knocking some homes off of their foundations. 43 people now dead in 12 states and close to 3 million people are still without power. we're all over the story with reports from many of the hardest hit areas. alina cho live along the connecticut shoreline. mary snow live in front of the raging passaic river in little falls, new jersey. let's start with you. what's the situation where you are? >> well, ali, as fierce as this looks, take -- crested about 7 feet above flood stage, and as intense as this is, it's a big improvement from just the last 24 hours. passaic river crested in several
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places yesterday, but with the rising waters forced evacuations in several towns, including patterson, new jersey. >> reporter: for a city that is used to flooding this became too much as people could no longer get out of homes on their own in patterson, new jersey, rescue crews in boats had to bring them to safety, from adults to babies. the passaic river hit levels not seen in more than a century. this woman had gone to her mother's house with her two children. 30-year-old couple kelly said he ignored evacuation orders because he's experienced many floods before. he lives on the second floor, but when waters topped the door to his building he waited by his window for help. >> i had food, water, things to survive and i was pretty much all right. it just got scary to me at a time where i see the water keep elevating i had to leave. >> reporter: this father and son
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were swept away by currents. this youtube video shows crews rescuing them. they were said to be checking on their property when the water took hold of them. rescue crews found them holding on to a log. >> they were scared. they were more scared than anything, holding on and they yelled out in the beginning, a lot of people around, that couldn't get to them and they were the ones screaming. >> reporter: while patterson has a history of flooding, city officials say what's different this time is that some areas not prone to flooding were under water. it's just one of several communities in northern new jersey seen here on monday that have been inundated by water following the heavy rains dumped by hurricane irene. and what you're looking at right now are some live pictures from patterson, new jersey. and you know, while the river has crested, county officials say that some areas in passaic county could be under water for several more days. ali? >> mary, it's quite dramatic,
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the pictures behind you. we'll stay on top of the story with you in new jersey and take it to connecticut now. >> that's right. where you're seeing mary, there usually are falls behind her, they don't look like that. alina cho live in east haven, connecticut, where beach houses crumbled to the ground when irene hit. dramatic be pictures coming out of connecticut on the shoreline as well. good morning, alina. >> christine, good morning to you. we are in cozy beach, a small shoreline community in east haven, connecticut, and all you have to do is take a walk along this stretch of beach and for as far as the eye can see, almost every home has been either damaged or destroyed. three days after hurricane irene made landfall in this community, residents here are only now beginning to assess the damage. and it's not pretty. so many homes simply wiped out. >> the whole first floor is gone. this was the second floor actually. >> this is the second floor?
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>> this is the second floor. >> reporter: the living room, kitchen, rooms that were once one floor up in dino's home are now hugging the beach at ground level. >> oh, my gosh. >> reporter: homes sheered in half by what many here call the perfect storm. >> it's eerie. you come back and it's almost like it's so surreal. >> reporter: like this scene, people enjoying their summer, just feet away from total devastation. these are the pillars on which the homes were built to protect them. this is what's left after irene. one resident told me it's as if someone picked up their home, threw it and stomped on it. all of the homes here, flattened and reduced to rubble. >> we believe that we have 25 homes that are a total loss and maybe another 20 that are uninhabitable. >> reporter: adding to the heartbreak, cozy beach is tightit in and many families have owned their homes for
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generations. like jim. >> we did get a little water in here. that's very unusual. >> reporter: 65 of his 70 summers have been spent here. he says with all the beach erosion over the years, owning a home on this stretch of beach is like playing russian roulette. >> it wasn't a question of if, it was a question of when. >> reporter: life-long resident roberta ignored the mandatory evacuation order. >> what did you see? >> i saw the house coming down. i saw this. this coming down and at me. >> reporter: her home was spared. but for dino and his family, there's little to salvage. yet, for him, leaving the area is not an option. >> i would not let this stop me from coming back. >> when you hear the name irene now? >> i won't be naming any of my daughters or pets irene. >> reporter: that's for sure.
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you're looking live now at dino's home or what's left of it. what is remarkable is that the mayor tells me there were no fatalities, not even any injuries, following irene. it appears that most, not all, but most of the residents did heed the warning and did get out ahead of the storm. as for the cleanup, the national guard, the salvation army, the red cross will be back in this community again today. president obama has declared an emergency in connecticut, but he has not declared the state a federal disaster area. and that is an important distinct. an emergency gets you preliminary aid like food and water, but it is only when the president declares a disaster area in this state that the millions of dollars pour in for rebuilding and we're told that declaration, christine, is days, if not weeks, away. >> we're also watching kind of a strapped, if you will, fema, with its federal emergency management fund down below a
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billion dollars. that's when people start to get nervous. thanks. coming up at 7:40, we'll talk to mayor jeffrey jones of patterson, new jersey. the latest on water rescues and rescues there. what his city needs to recover from this storm. also in our 8:00 hour, we'll speak to govern dan maloy of connecticut about the recovery effort in his state. we're also watching this. it's happening now. a devastating wildfire burning out of control in northern texas. take a look at this spectacular new video from our dallas affiliate wfaa. the 7500 acre fire has burned ability 30 homes to the ground. 125 other homes have now been evacuated. officials say the blaze is 0% contained and it's growing. the fire is located 50 miles west of dallas/ft. worth. this is the worst fire season ever in texas with a record 3.5 million acres burned. more destruction in oklahoma city. a wildfire there burning down 12
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structures, including two homes. 600 acres have been scorched and officials have now evacuated several hundred people. they're going door to door to get people out of their homes. officials say two people have been hurt, including a firefighter who was overcome by the intense heat. and in eastern new orleans, people with respiratory problems are being told to stay in their homes, as a marsh fire continues to cover the metro area and choking smoke look at that. national guard helicopters have been brought in to dump water on the fire. there is hopeful news this morning. a 60% chance of rain in the forecast. that's for later this week, but at least there is rain in the forecast, right? >> it's coming. look at what weather looks like across the country in addition to these unusual spots we've been talking about. good friend, rob marciano is back in the extreme weather center. good morning. >> good morning. high fire danger in the spots seeing those fire issues. oklahoma, texas, here you go. that area and also the intermountain west. as far as the flooding is concerned live pictures i
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believe out of patterson and new jersey where the waters continue to rush over that area. we're looking at, my goodness, that shot just still takes me back, dramatic rescues and evacuations last night. the river has crested, but that does not mean the danger is over. look at this graphic highlighting the fact that we will be in major flood stage until friday morning. so those folks are not going back any time too soon. and adding insult to injury here's tropical storm katia. way out there in the atlantic, that's the good news. bad news, it's forecast to become a hurricane, almost there, 65-mile-an-hour winds right now. little bit of encouraging hope at least, the forecast for this will likely, likely keep it out to sea, but we have to wait until we get to the beginning of next week before we can give the all clear. history tells us that this sort of track or the start of this track may curve it, bermuda or the carolinas not out of the woods.
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this thing of more immediate concern, northwestern caribbean, this will get into the gulf of mexico. the computer models are developing it into something, the texas coast line or florida coastline closer towards the weekend. we have to wait and see. more indication later today and tomorrow. texas would take the rain from that system, but if it lingers in the gulf of mexico past the weekend, then it will become a stronger than just a tropical storm. another nice day for rescue and recovery efforts across the northeast. that's one little bright spot as that -- really, really odd, obviously, to see the rivers rise to these record levels with days of gorgeous, dry weather and these folks being -- having to flee from their homes as the rivers rise where they've never been before in parts of new jersey and connecticut. >> thanks very much. it is incredible to continue to watch. you do think when these things pass, that's when it's done, but for new jersey, for vermont, it's just not getting better. >> and connecticut the rivers
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haven't crested yet. >> rob said all along, inland flooding is the story here. the storm will pass. inland flooding is the story. ahead on "american morning," a new twist in the case of the american woman missing in aruba. the only suspect could go free. a live report coming up. and a most unusual find. when a passenger tries to get through security at miami international airport, here's a hint. you wouldn't think you could keep it in your pants. get your mind out of the gutter. >> oh. a young -- young conservative women not happy after a magazine refers to them as baby palins. hear their objections. our talk back question of the day. it's 13 minutes after the hour. [ male announcer ] to the seekers of things which are one of a kind.
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he's been held for almost a month in aruba. at a court hearing later today, giordano could go free. martin savidge is live for us in aruba. good morning, martin. >> good morning, christine. there's a new report out that says that gary giordano on the day he reported robyn gardener missing was stumbling along the beach and had blood coming from a cut on his throat according to witnesses. the reason that's important is some say look, those might have been defensive wounds, robyn gardener struggling with him. take a look at that mug shot photo. you can see his neckline clearly days after he was arrested and no indication that there was a scratch there. this just goes to show you that the eyewitness accounts coming in on this story vary all over the map and that's the problem the judge will have today. gary giordano goes before a judge, and the judge is going to make a decision whether there is enough evidence to continue to hold him in this case or not. the defense attorneys will argue and say look, you've held my client over a month, this was
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nothing more than an accident, we don't care what proof you put forward, because they really don't have much, you have to let him go. the prosecution will say look,s theres a more to this case, how about the million and a half dollar insurance policy gary giordano took out on robyn gardener days before she vanished. that's motive but isn't necessarily proof. there's a lot of back and forth. talk to legal experts on the island and they can't tell you how it's going to turn out today. the proceeding is closed. we'll try to be outside and we certainly will give you the first report whenever that comes down. but it could be a very big day for gary giordano. he could walk. he could go home. and the mystery of robyn gardener still isn't solved. >> martin, are they still looking for her, or have they determined that she's gone? are they -- is there still a search for her? >> no, there is no active search going on. that ended i think it was the saturday after she disappeared. she disappeared on a tuesday.
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there's been a couple of what they call spot searches based upon intelligence or information that they gather from witnesses or gary giordano himself. so they've looked in large areas where the couple was near when they were down there on the southern part of the island. not a trace. no clothing, no indication, no sign of what happened to robyn gardener. the people who have drowned in that area have always been found. which is why people wondering was she ever really in the water. >> thanks so much, martin savidge, thank you. now is your chance to talk back on one of the big stories of the day. the question this morning, are conservative women unfairly stereotyped. take a look at this month's issue of "elle" magazine. it says the best and the rightest. that's okay. but the article labels these young conservative women "baby palins" and that stings not because they dislike sarah palin but because all the negatives attached to palin. thanks to the media and, of
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course, "saturday night live." >> ultimately what the bailout does is help those that are concerned about the health care reform that is needed to help shore up our economy to help, um, it's got to be all about job creation too. >> and i can see russia from my house. >> i don't know. is it? boom boom boom. >> karyn agnus featured in the "elle" article and founder of the conservative women of enlightened women says the palin brand has been so damaged by the media the baby palin label serves the purpose of quickly stereotyping and delegitimizing us at the same time. you know, like not all liberal women fit the stereotype of a man-hating, harry leg bra burner. but the article's author defends her work, stating the women
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profiled are into guns and motherhood and low taxes. a rather new conservative female ideology first introduced to the national political discourse by palin. so the talk back this morning, are conservative women unfairly stereotyped? facebook.com/americanmorning. facebook.com/americanmorning. i'll read your comments later this hour. >> i need more choices than those two, the bra burning man hating, harry legged liberal or the not so bright mother of five. >> i'm sorry, as a woman -- i think in general women are lumped together and we only care about certain things and we don't care about other things. like women don't really care, first and foremost, about the economy, although i know that you do and you're a mother too. so i think in general, women are lumped into this category where our interests are limited. >> i also think it's an easy narrative for headline writers and when you're in the political horse race to start throwing
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people together in groups. >> calling them things like baby palins in other words. >> i don't know what you two have against harry legs, but whatever. coming up next a father and his two young daughters fighting for their lives in a rager new hampshire river and it's caught on camera. >> we're talking within seconds of them letting go. there's nothing between them and the falls. >> we're going to show you how this desperate rescue turned out when "american morning" continues. 22 minutes after the hour. who cuddle up with your soreness and give out polar bear hugs. technology. [ male announcer ] new bengay cold therapy. the same technology used by physical therapists. go to bengay.com for a 5-dollar coupon. a living, breathing intelligence that's helping drive the future of business. in here, inventory can be taught to learn. ♪ machines have a voice. ♪ medical history follows you. it's the at&t network -- a network of possibilities...
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minding your business this morning. 25 minutes after the hour. a little bit of concern yesterday morning on a weak report on consumer confidence but the dow, nasdaq and s&p all were higher by the close. stocks made those gains following news that some federal reserve members favor stimulus measures, just the fact that another round of economic stimulus was even discussed at the fed's interest rate meeting this month was enough to push stocks higher. but the fed is not officially announced any new measures to boost growth in the economy. that buzz about potential of
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more stimulus from the fed pushing u.s. stock futures higher this morning. right now futures on the dow, nasdaq, s&p 500 are trading higher. more legal trouble for bank of america. ad u.s. bank corp to the group of companies filing lawsuits against the bank. the suit is related to mortgage banked locked that went sour. the price on this $1.75 billion. check this out, a new study says 25 of the 100 highest paid ceos in america were paid more last year than their companies paid in government income taxes. that's according to a report by a left leaning washington think tank. cnn reaching out to some of the companies highlighted like ebay, general electric, boeing for comments and no responses. some of the country's largest banks cutting slack for hurricane irene victims. jp morgan chase and wells fargo waving bank fees like overdraft fees, late fees and atm fees for customers if you're coping with irene's aftermath, check with your bank to see if they're
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good morning to you. it's 30 minutes past the hour. time for your top stories. new this hour, president obama has declared a major disaster in north carolina. the first state where hurricane irene made landfalls and also in new york.
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the president has also declared a disaster area there. 43 people now dead in the storm. hundreds of people have been pulled from their homes in new jersey as floodwaters surge into towns there, days after the storm moved out. close to 3 million people on the east coast still without electricity. a devastating wildfire is raging out of control 50 miles west of dallas/ft. worth. the 7500 acre fire has already burned about 30 structures to the ground, 125 homes have been evacuated and here's the worrisome part, officials say the blaze is 0% contained and growing. a developing story out of northeast japan. a magnitude 4.7 earthquake rattled the coast. it was centered about 86 miles northeast of fukushima where officials are still trying to contain a nuclear disaster from the tsunami that hit back in march. we are getting our first look from the ground at the stunning damage in the small upstate new york town of prattsville. the only comparison that can be made is it looks like parts of new orleans did after katrina.
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without, of course, the extreme loss of life. only this is hours inland. record rainfall forced creeks to swell, walls of water surged down the mountains, ripped homes off of their foundations, slabs of concrete and layers of mud left behind. roads and bridges into towns were wiped out and that's left hundreds of people stranded. and take a look at this, a railroad bridge just gone. the tracks left behind, hanging 15 feet in the air. this came to us from an i-reporter in vermont. the railroad bed swept away by floodwaters from irene. on the day after hurricane irene, an incredible rescue in new hampshire caught on tape. a father and his two daughters, age 7 and 9, nearly swept away while riding on a jet ski in the raging merrimack river. looking at them clinging to this dam cable kept them from going over a waterfall. rescuers got to the family with only seconds to spare. >> both -- all three hanging on to that cable that was down
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there. i saw the two little girls on either side of the dad and knew that's who we had to grab first. he was very disappointed in himself but he saved his family by first having pfds on and keeping them altogether. >> got to have the personal flotation devices on. the rescuer says the father was slipping in and out of consciousness when they reached him. a few seconds later all three of them, they say they would have been swept away. >> can i just -- i mean -- these rivers are so dangerous. there is so much water. this is not a recreational sporting time in the northeast. >> a lot of people, i knew people surfing here when it happened. some people like the water sports -- >> kids in the water! >> i'm really glad everyone is all right and that rescuer who said that he did the right thing keeping his family together and making sure they were wearing personal flowtation devices but do not go in the raging rivers. >> there's debris in the water, fallen trees and branches and that could cause -- >> bridges down. you're going to get -- a lot of
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potential for injury. >> wow. gearing up for the september debut. >> republican members of the congressional debt reduction committee have met, the super committee, met for the first time in a day-long strategy session on capitol hill. the bipartisan super committee facing a thanksgiving deadline to identify $1.2 trillion in budget cuts. democrats on the panel plan to hold a conference call today. we've been told by some of the participants they're going to be drawing from a lot of previous work that has been done. there have been a lot of panels that have tried to look at how to cut our deficits. >> no need to reinvent the wheel on deficit cutting. we've done all the research we have to do. i have a good guess these guys will ruin our thanksgiving, though. >> don't say that. do not say that. >> okay. i hope they don't, though. >> the so-called fast and furious operation you've heard us talking about, allowed thousands of weapons to be sold illegally, has cost the alcohol, tobacco, firls and explosive chief his job.
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kenneth melson reassigned to a lesser post as part of the sting, hundreds of weapons were smuggled into mexico, the problem is they ended up in the hands of drug cartels and later linked to several killings. it was a program that was designed to be a sting operation, but the sting part didn't work. it just ended up -- >> somebody got stung already. folks at atf -- >> putting heavy duty guns into the hands of the wrong people. >> actress daryl hannah among more than 100 people arrested during a sit-in, protesting the keystone pipeline project. it would dramatically increase the amount of oil the u.s. imports from alberta, canada's, controversial oil sands. critics say the way the oil is extracted harms the environment. >> interesting. the oil sands are one of those, it's the biggest industrial site on the planet. you can see it from space. produces a lot of oil. >> yeah. >> produces a lot of oil. when you talk about getting oil from places friendly, a lot of people who say why don't we get
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more oil from canada, opponents who say it's getting better, cleaner, but still -- >> i think daryl hannah will lose this fight. that's my guess. >> a growing movement of people, mayors and governors who say we don't want this dirty oil. oil is dirty from everywhere, friendly or unfriendly dirty oil. >> from the saudis where you're competing with china for oil around the world or canada on the oil sands. we've seen him fish, ride horseback, even hunt siberian tigers, know who i'm talking about. russian prime minister vladimir putin showed up at a festival on a harley. his ride coming months before the country's next presidential election. there's a lot of speculation he may run again. he is wearing a jacket. i've seen him shirtless on a horse. >> 20 bucks on a t-shirt. he's buff. >> he's on a three-wheeled harley. >> i don't know about those three-wheeled bikes. at some point if you get a
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three-wheeled bike you need a car. >> you're going to get hate mail. >> trying to prove his manliness. >> use two wheels. coming up ahead on "american morning," the crisis in libya extending to zoo animals suffering a lack of food and water. this is common in these strife torn areas. nic robertson visits a tripoli zoo to see how they've been affected by the fighting. ♪ [ male announcer ] they'll see you...before you see them. cops are cracking down on drinking and riding. drive sober, or get pulled over. you booked our room right? not yet, thanks for reminding me. wait, what? i have the hotels.com app so we can get a great deal even at the last minute. ah, well played get the app. tels.com.
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no longer the republican frontrunner, mitt romney has stepped up his game. romney is going on the attack against the man who repleased him, texas governor rick perry on perry's home turf. the romney campaign reversed course on two events. tea party favorite michele bachmann will be campaigning in iowa for the first time since winning the gop straw poll. shannon travis is live in des moines. what are these events that romney's reversed course on, shannon? >> well, romney's reversed his schedule, course on his schedule. he was supposed to be headlining his first major tea party event, really in his political career, ali, on monday, labor day. the tea party express, they've
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got the bus tour going across country. he was supposed to headline that event on monday in new hampshire in manchester, but he's actually going to do a concord stop the day before on sunday. now that's kind of ied tea party organizers. i put that story out there yesterday when we first reported it, but when romney reversed course the tea party express, the organizers, i got on the phone with them and they were not happy. they're saying this cnn story we broke has been out there for a while. they were asking romney to keep the monday appearance, the labor day appearance, instead of the sunday appearance. i want to note that romney's campaign says that they are trying to accommodate, basically want to go to a forum in south carolina on monday on that same day hosted by senator -- south carolina senator jim demint. also he's a big tea party booster as well. one quote from romney's people. quote, we were able to reschedule governor romney's calendar in order to be in south
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carolina and new hampshire on both days. so, little bit of a schedule reversal by governor romney that didn't make the tea party express organizers happy. >> talk to me about sarah palin, what's she up to? >> yeah. sarah palin, she's got a busy schedule as well, ali. she's going to be in iowa on saturday. she's going to be joining an iowa tea party rally here. we just learned yesterday that she is also going to be headlining a tea party express rally on monday on labor day in new hampshire. this was the same rally that mitt romney was supposed to be headlining. now that he won't be doing that, that event, he'll be in south carolina, sarah palin will be headlining it and, of course, you can imagine that's going to create a whole lot of buzz. this saturday, lots of speculation, ali, about whether she'll announce a presidential run or not. >> shannon, good to see you, thank you, my friend. as the manhunt for moammar gadhafi intensifies in libya, rebel leaders estimate some
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50,000 people may be missing as a result of the country's civil war. the u.n. says tripoli faces a true humanitarian crisis with 2 million residents desperately short of food and water. cnn's nic robertson went to check on some of the war's forgotten victims as well, animals at the tripoli zoo. nic's live for us in tripoli. hi, nic. we saw this in iraq, we've seen this whenever there's civil war, conflict and the like, it's as if people who work there simply disappear and then a few days later we have to figure out what's happening. >> that's right, christine. that's what i was thinking about. i drove past the zoo and i remember when i was in tripoli in the rixos hotel where the journalists were, at night you could hear the lions roaring because the zoo is behind the hotel and i thought look, we should go in and check it out. when i got there i realized that no one else had been in. >> reporter: we've just come into tripoli's main zoo. the gates were locked. we were told that it had been
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under renovation for the last three years, that there weren't any animals here. we're getting a look around, i can see a vulture up there. certainly a huge bird of prey. as i'm looking at it, we hear a lion roaring. it's an eerie feeling walking around here. you don't know what you're going to bump into. most of the cages seem empty. just trying to follow the sound of the roaring. there he is. there he is. tiger. he's seen us. just looking at him you can see how thin he is the way he's walking, the back thighs, so skinny against his back. he looks like he's going in there to get shade. then we see the lions, the male particularly skinny, the deep scar on his head. there's no one here to tell us how often they're being fed, how much they're getting fed. we don't even know if there's a
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vet here to look after them. all we've seen so far is the food left by the giant tortoises. these lions look like they're just not getting enough to eat. suddenly, we get some answers. the zookeeper has arrived. i'm going to ask him about the animals. how are you? >> fine. so what about the animals? are they getting enough food, the lions, the tyingers? >> reporter: he it tells me for seven days the animals got nothing. now, ten of the 200 staff have returned. they're trying to feed all the animals, the big cats get only half the food they need but their biggest problem is water. he takes us to see the hippos. of all the animals, they seem the most forlorned. the keeper tells us he tried to get more water in here. even laid this plastic pipe on the floor right into the tank here with the hippo. but it didn't work. and they're just left with rank
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water. even they don't want to go into. struggling to keep up, so many animals to feed. hyenas, bears, monkeys, deer, emus, but it's the big cats, the meat eaters, they can't feed enough. >> reporter: but it's the water in the zoo that's the most pressing need. water's cut off in tripoli. the zoo keepers can't get what they need for the animals. it's dehydrating them. the zoo keepers fear unless they can sort that out, these big cats and all the others, are going to continue to suffer, christine. >> priorities in a country that is, you know, simply trying to feed people and get water to people. it's just priority in the wake of civil war. nic robertson, thank you so much. okay. here's your bizarre story of the morning. wasn't snakes on a plane but sure was close. officials say a passenger tried to board a flight from miami to
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brazil with bags containing seven exotic snakes and three tortoises and had those bags, yes, stuffed down his pants. >> oh, no he didn't. >> oh, yes he did! >> the man was stopped after passing through a body scanner at miami international airport. this happened last week. and -- look of horror on his face. the man was arrested for violating animal trafficking laws. still no explanation for his botched attempt at reptile smuggling. did he go through the full body scanner. >> i would have loved to see the tsa people who saw, was that like a tortoise and snake in his pants, the other one is going, don't be disgusting. that's not a tortoise and snake in his pants. look at the screen, it's a tortoise and snake in his pants. i just -- i would have loved to have seen how that conversation went down. nothing against smugglers, that's fine. but really? a snake in your pants? >> smuggling is illegal.
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>> i'm not judging. i'm not judging. i don't understand why you need to put a snake and tortoise in your pants. is that a snake and tortoise in your pants. the tv star accused of beating up a bus driver. >> also -- >> i'm sitting this one out. >> stop it. and the people who handle it where white gloves, imagine the wincing faces when -- oh, no. >> not the stanley cup. >> again. >> when this happened. watch. >> oh, no. oh, yes. >> it's 47 minutes past the hour. ♪ guitars are one of the most loved instruments in modern music. unless, of course, they're out of tune. >> in music the tuning is very important. anybody can tune a guitar, but keeping it in tune is the problem. ♪ all of a sudden you're dancing in front of the audience, hey, how is everybody doing? okay. i'm tuning. how is the world. it's a process that can take
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away from the rhythm of the show. >> reporter: that led to ever tune a device that will keep your guitar in tune forever. >> some ways it's a pretty simple design, isn't it? >> >> it's very simple, all mechanical, based on a spring technology and constant tension. that's the beauty of ever tune. we're in the adding bells and whistles and blinking lights to a guitar. >> the ever tune is used by some of the biggest names on stage and it's just the beginning. >> we're talking pianos, viol violins, base, everything? >> any string strung between two points works on the same principles. if there's a string, we can keep it in tune. >> which means now, you've run out of excuses for why you're off key. reynolds wolf, cnn, hollywood, california. [ oswald ] there's a lot of discussion going on about the development of natural gas, whether it can be done safely and responsibly.
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at exxonmobil we know the answer is yes. when we design any well, the groundwater's protected by multiple layers of steel and cement. most wells are over a mile and a half deep so there's a tremendous amount of protective rock between the fracking operation and the groundwater. natural gas is critical to our future. at exxonmobil we recognize the challenges and how important it is to do this right.
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51 minutes after the hour. here's what you need to know to start your day. president obama has now declared major disasters in north carolina and new york after hurricane irene. rivers are cresting and water surging into towns in the northeast where hundreds have been evacuated. 43 people now dead because of the storm. 7500 acre wildfire is raging out of control 50 miles west of dallas/ft. worth. it's already destroyed about 30 structures and 125 homes have been evacuated. officials say the blaze is 0%
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contained and growing. he's been held in aruba the past month in connection with the disappearance of american robyn gardener. after a court hearing today gary giordano could go free. a cleveland bus driver accusing actor matthew fox of assault. she claims the former "lost" star attacked her on a party bus. prosecutors say they're reviewing the complaint. no comment from fox who's in cleveland filming a movie. the ncaa suspending eight university of miami football players for receiving cash and gifts from a former booster. they have to pay back the money they took before they can play again. that's the news you need to know to start your day. "american morning" back right after this.
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53 minutes past the hour. we asked you to talk back on one of the big stories of the day. the question this morning, are conservative women unfairly stereotyped. this from christina -- talking about you, isn't that enough? this from david -- this from benny, a regular of ours, thank you --
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>> these three comments would make a great dinner party. these very well -- i was listening to all of them and they don't say the same thing, but really well thought out criticisms. >> so republican women are stereotyped, liberal women are stereo stipe -- typed, all women stereotyped. >> a lot of women business leaders are fiscal conservatives. i don't think they enjoy -- we don't have a vision of them. >> not separating women business leaders from male business leaders. >> many male business leaders -- >> are physically conservative. why wouldn't business leaders be -- >> more to being a business leader. interesting discussion. great comments. facebook.com/americanmorning. okay. the stanley cup, word to canadians -- >> cover your eyes. >> this video is graphic. >> not just canadians.
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>> any hockey fans. >> there it is. that's the stanley cup. hockey's holy grail hitting the ground. fell off a table. someone yelled out -- first hit of the day, after. michael ryder who helped the bruins win the cup back in june brought it up, take it to his hometown, the 118-year-old cup didn't appear to suffer any damage. >> it's a tough thing. the cup is tough. >> it's been dropped before. i don't understand why people keep dropping the cup. >> funny center of gravity. >> i think that's what it is, it wasn't added to by an engineer. it's done that. not like it drops off a bus, somebody drops it off their hands. somebody puts it somewhere, knocks it, it goes over. they need to put weights in the heavy base. >> need a better table. >> need a better table. >> coming up ahead, we'll be talking to the fema chief about hurricane irene. is there enough cash left to help everyone and who's being left out because money has to be shifted to this hurricane response. 56 minutes after the hour. hey, the new guy is loaded with protein!
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storm long gone, the suffering far from over, people
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running from their homes along rivers and returning to destruction along the beach. all in the wake of hurricane irene. >> and fast-moving flames, not a drop of moisture to stop them. homes already burning, 100 more in the line of fire. >> and there's power in numbers. those numbers are dwindling. with labor day around the corner, a serious look at whether unions in this country are dying and where the power lies now. >> could food be the only medicine you need to cure heart disease on this "american morning." good morning. it's wednesday, august 31st. welcome to "american morning." in and amongst the stories of disaster we're covering you were talking about food and heart disease. sanjay will be back with us about the special, "the last heart attack" about whether you can just adjust your diet and dramatically reduce -- >> forget about the cholesterol lowering drugs. >> i was trying to dodge exercise. >> there you go. >> i'm not sure i can fix my
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diet. >> i want to take you to live pictures out of patterson, new jersey. the race to reach higher ground. several hundred people have been evacuated in new jersey as flooding continues now three days after hurricane irene tore through. these are pictures you're seeing of patterson where the water is ferocious at this hour. in vermont a dozen towns cut off by flooding had supplies airlifted in. more than 250 roadways cut off by high waters and the layers of mud and muck left when the water started to go down. in connecticut, shoreline communities are in shambles, homes are torn to shreds, knocked off their pillars, the force of irene bending steel. sliding some of these homes in connecticut off their foundations. 43 people are now dead in 12 states, close to 3 million people are still without power. we're all over the story still. reports from many of the hardest hit areas. alina cho is live along the storm ravaged connecticut shoreline. also first mary snow live along
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the raging passaic river in little falls, new jersey. let's start with mary. little falls is usually what you see behind you but much smaller, little falls. now it's a dangerous mass of water. >> yeah. and christine f you take a look at the raging water behind me, consider the fact that this is a big improvement over the last 24 hours. the passaic river here crested seven feet above flood stage. and i was here last night and it was more intense than it is now. even though some of the waters are receding, county officials say that some places may be under water for several days and rising waters on tuesday forced evacuations, including patterson, new jersey, which is a nearby town from where i am right now. >> reporter: for a city that is used to flooding this became too much as people could no longer
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get out of homes on their own in patterson, new jersey, rescue crews in boats had to bring them to safety, from adults to babies. the passaic river hit levels not seen in more than a century. this woman had gone to her mother's house with her two children. 30-year-old connor kelly said he ignored evacuation orders because he's experienced many floods before. he lives on the second floor, but when waters topped the door to his building he waited by his window for help. >> i had food, water, things to live an survive with and i was pretty much all right, but it just got scary to me at a time where i see the water keep elevating i had to leave. >> reporter: this father and son were swept away by currents. this youtube video shows crews rescuing them. they were said to be checking on their property when the water took hold of them. rescue crews found them holding on to a log. >> they were scared. they were more scared than anything, holding on and they yelled out in the beginning, a lot of people around, that
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couldn't get to them and they were the ones screaming. >> reporter: while patterson has a history of flooding, city officials say what's different this time is that some areas not prone to flooding were under water. it's just one of several communities in northern new jersey seen here on monday that have been inundated by water following the heavy rains dumped by hurricane irene. and you're looking right now at live pictures over patterson, new jersey. this morning, you can see that a picture of a bridge just swamped by water. we spoke to the mayor of patterson a few minutes ago and he was saying those evacuations you just saw were going on until 10:30 last night and in total, he estimates more than 1,000 people have been displaced from their homes. christine, one of the things that caused some people to leave their homes, some of the high rises had to be evacuated because power was shut down. the town had to open a couple of
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schools in order to provide housing for people, many more people, than they expected to be evacuated. christine? >> all right. mary snow, thanks. trouble in connecticut too. connecticut is now ordering new evacuations as water surges downstream from places further north in new england. also along the state shoreline there are scenes of total devastation. alina cho is live in east haven, connecticut, which is east of new haven, connecticut. and the picture behind you, it's just unbelievable. >> it really is, carol. good morning to you. residents here describe this as a war zone. really, all you have to do is take a walk along cozy beach here in east haven, connecticut, and for as far as the eye can see, nearly every home here has been either damaged or destroyed. three days after hurricane irene made landfall here, residents are only just now beginning to assess the damage. and it's not pretty. so many homes, simply wiped out.
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>> the whole first floor is gone. this was the second floor actually. >> this is the second floor? >> this is the second floor. >> reporter: the living room, kitchen, rooms that were once one floor up in dino's home are now hugging the beach at ground level. >> oh, my gosh. >> reporter: homes sheered in half by what many here call the perfect storm. >> it's eerie. you come back and it's almost like it's so surreal. >> reporter: like this scene, people enjoying their summer, just feet away from total devastation. these are the pillars on which the homes were built to protect them. this is what's left after irene. one resident told me it's as if someone picked up their home, threw it and stomped on it. all of the homes here, flattened and reduced to rubble. >> we believe that we have 25 homes that are a total loss and maybe another 20 that are uninhabitable.
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>> reporter: adding to the heartbreak, cozy beach is tightknit, and many families have owned their homes for generations. like jim. >> we did get a little water in here. that's very unusual. >> reporter: 65 of his 70 summers have been spent here. he says with all the beach erosion over the years, owning a home on this stretch of beach is like playing russian roulette. >> it wasn't a question of if, it was a question of when. >> reporter: life-long resident roberta ignored the mandatory evacuation order. >> what did you see? >> i saw the house coming down. i saw this. this coming down and at me. >> reporter: her home was spared. but for dino and his family, there's little to salvage. yet, for him, leaving the area is not an option. >> i would not let this stop me from coming back. >> when you hear the name irene now? >> i won't be naming any of my daughters or pets irene.
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>> reporter: back live here, some of the homes along this stretch of beach have been described as toppled doll houses. others quite literally have been sliced in half and the sad part is, there are so many memories in these homes, generations of families living here. the good news, if there is any in this matter, is that the mayor tells me there were no fatalities, not even any injuries, following irene. it appears that most, not all, but most of the residents did heed the warning, they did get out ahead of the storm. as for the power situation, nearly a half million people are still without power in connecticut. 15,000 right here in east haven, connecticut. when i asked the mayor, when do you think they might turn the power back on, she told me, carol, that's a very good question, i have no idea. >> oh, no. you're right, the best news, no one was hurt.
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alina cho, many thanks. in a few minutes joined by fema director craig fugate and 7:30 eastern, mayor jeffrey jones of patterson, new jersey. he'll give us the latest on the water rescues and if there are more evacuations to be done and what his city needs to recover from this. and in our 8:00 hour, 8:00 eastern hour we'll talk with governor dan maloy of connecticut about the recovery effort from where you saw alina standing. unrelated to the hurricane, a devastating wildfire in texas. burning out of control. 50 miles west of dallas/ft. worth. looking at these live pictures right now. spectacular video from our dallas affiliate, wfaa. it's a 7500 acre fire burned about 30 structures to the ground. and has evacuated more than 125 homes. officials continue to tell us that the blaze is 0% contained and it is growing. this is the worst fire season ever in texas. a record 3.5 million acres burned and ongoing drought.
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rob marciano is in the weather center for us. all sorts of sfratrange weather going on across this country. >> state of texas would take a tropical system right now, as you mentioned record drought, record fire season, record heat and winds today are creating red flag warning and critical fire danger for those areas in oklahoma and texas dealing with the fires not to mention what's going on in the intermountain west. temperatures well into the 90s, some cases over 100, that doesn't help the folks there in texas. but there is something that's trying to develop in the gulf of mexico over the weekend, which may bring some rain to texas but then again may bring it to florida, we don't know yet. another quiet day across the northeast for the cleanup and recovery effort there. that's been the only bright spot in the past couple days. not so bright spot, tropical storm katia, this is almost a hurricane. winds now of 65 miles an hour. expected to become a hurricane in the next day or two. moving rapidly to the west/northwest at about 20 miles an hour. here's the forecast from the national hurricane center, towards the leeward islands,
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caribbean, a bit more of a northward jog. we like that up to category 3 we don't like that. too early to tell whether or not this will miss the u.s. in this trajectory it heads right for us, but history tells us these type of storms often hit a weakness and ridge that will let it go to the north. we certainly hope that's the case as we go through time. in the immediate future, northwestern caribbean this will drift into the gulf of mexico. some of our computer models bring this into texas as a weak tropical storm which will be good, take the rain, some of them let it linger in the gulf, develop a little more possibly to a strong storm or hurricane that could make landfall across the northern gulf of mexico towards florida. that would be affecting the u.s. as early as this weekend. and as late as early next week. we'll have to keep an eye on it closely and give you updates throughout the day. >> thanks, rob. ahead, a father and his two young daughters holding on for their lives in a raging new hampshire river and it's all caught on camera. >> we're talking within seconds
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of them letting go and then there's nothing between them and the falls. >> holding on. we're going to show you how this desperate rescue turned out and why they were on the river in the first place when "american morning" continues.
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an incredible river rescue caught on camera in new hampshire. just look at this video. a father and his two daughters, they're 7 and 9 years old, these girls, they were nearly swept away while riding on a jet ski in the raging mer ra mack river. look at them clinging to this dam cable. it was the only thing keeping them from going over a waterfall. rescuers reached the family with a few seconds to spare. >> saw them both, all three hanging on to that cable that was down there. i saw the two little girls on either side of the dad and knew that's what we had to grab first. >> he was very disappointed in himself but saved his own family
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by first having pfds on and then keeping them altogether. >> pfd, personal flowtation device, life jacket. rescuers say the father was slipping in and out of consciousness when they reached him. a few seconds later all three of them would have been swept over the falls. any -- wow. i mean, just don't go in the water, folks. it's really dangerous out there. this is not fun and games. don't go in the water. that's evidence right there. just next door in vermont efforts under way to get supplies to people stranded in a dozen towns left isolated when floodwaters washed dozens of roads and bridges out. national guard helicopters have been flying in food and water. vermont ended up being a surprise casualty in hurricane irene. fema director administrator craig fugate visited the state going to be checking out the damage in new york and new jersey later on. he's with us from albany, new york. thanks very much for being with us. >> good morning. >> you've had, boy, a busy year.
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seen a lot of destruction in this country. a lot of people in the northeast who continue to say that we dodged a bullet here. you've spent time up there. what's your evaluation of it? >> nobody that got hit with this flooding dodged a bullet. loss of life, extensive damages, homes flooded, so it may not have been as big of a deal on the coast but these flood areas got hit hard. >> talk about money for a second. a lot of talk in the last couple days about fema having less than a billion dollars on hand, maybe running out of money and reallocating resources from some projects to others. can you give me some sense of what's going on with money? >> right now we're continuing our obligations to respond to all of the rescue operations, all of the immediate needs. we've said look we're not going to be able to fund permanent work from disasters that's not come in, we want to make sure we have enough money to go to the
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fiscal year and we're doing our job to get ready for this and other disasters but we are focused on the immediate response. >> specific responses to money diverted away from work in joplin. give me a sense of that and any other tradeoffs you've had to make. >> well, right now we've done this for all open disasters that if you had permanent work that had not started, we're not going to be able to move forward. but for all the survivors getting assistance from fema, they continue to get that. for all the cleanup work, all the emergency work, that is being funded. but we are postponing the permanent work at this point, given the impacts of irene on the system. >> so, for people who don't know the role of fema, you and i talked prior to the hurricane and you were saying, look, the emergency, rescue, all that stuff is coordinated by local officials and you should listen to your mayors and governors about that, what is fema supposed to do after? what's the role of fema after an event like this? >> well, when we're past a response and rescue operations
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and begin talking about recovery f it warrants, if the disaster is bad enough and governor requests and the president declares a disaster, financial assistance not only to the survivors eligible but to help state and local governments rebuild from the damages that weren't insured. >> alina cho is in connecticut where the mayor said we need fema to help us rebuild. what role does fema have in helping a place like that rebuild? >> it won't be based upon that. it will be based upon the governor's request for a presidential declaration. if that declaration is granted we have the ability to provide grant funds to rebuild public infrastructure and repair damages with funding. >> you go into places that have been damaged, you tour around and try to offer helping hand, give people reassurance about fema being there to help them out. i want you to listen to something you know, ron paul has been talking about fema recently, on our air last night. listen to what he said and get a
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chance to respond. >> fema is not a good friend of most people in texas because all they do is come in and tell you what to do and can't do, can't get in your houses, hinder the local people and hinder volunteers from going in. there's no majgic about fema an more people are starting to recognize because they are a great contributory deficit financing and they don't have a penny in the bank. >> said a few things there, not a friend of people, gets in the way, great friend of deficit financing and not a penny in the bank. your response? >> we're doing our job supporting governors. we have teams on the ground. urban search and rescue teams have been completing and doing rescues. when we were in vermont, food and water we provided the state was being handed out. we do our job, we're working hard, this is a team effort, we recognize the valuable role of our volunteers, recognize the valuable role of the private sector and we're all in this together. americans help americans in
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disaster and fema is designed by congress to support governors and bring all the federal assets together under the leadership of the president. we're doing our job and working hard and we are going to continue to work to support the survivors in the states impacted by the disaster. >> we're in a different world where deficit talk does continue, eric cantor says fema should be getting funding but cut somewhere else. what's your message to congress to say in this time of concern about funding, not to cut fema's? >> in the country i grew up in, americans come to american's help in crisis. we've always done it. we'll continue to do it. i'm doing my job. we're working hard as a team. the president and everybody else is working hard to support these states and the local communities impacted. we're focused on our mission. but in this country we always come to each other's aids in this type of a crisis. >> craig fugate, you're looking at katia, this, good chance it's not going to hit the united states but it's out there. at what point do you get concerned about the next thing?
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>> about one minute after whatever happens. there's no time lag between earthquakes and hurricanes. you don't know when the next disaster is going to strike. even though we were all in on irene we were making sure we were ready for the next disaster. peak hurricane season is in september. we have a ways to go. as we saw with the earthquake in the eastern part of the u.s., some disasters don't come with warnings. that's why we tell people get prepared now. >> good to talk to you. thanks very much. the administrator of fema. 22 minutes after the hour. we'll be right back. and commitment is not limited to one's military oath. the same set of values that drive our nation's military are the ones we used to build usaa bank. from free checking to credit cards to loans, our commitment to the military, veterans, and their families is without equal. ♪ visit us online to learn what makes our bank so different. usaa. we know what it means to serve.
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minding your business. a higher day barrelry for the dow, nasdaq and s&p 500 after a hit from a weak reading on
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consumer confidence markets recovered on hopes of more stimulus from the federal reserve. nothing official has been announced but minutes of the fed's recent meeting revealed some federal reserve members favor stimulus measures. qe 3, just the fact that another round of economic stimulus was discussed was enough to encourage investors. futures on the dow, nasdaq and s&p 500 are trading sharply higher ahead of the opening bell. the mortgage mess remains a legal mess for bank of america. add u.s. bank corp to the list of companies filing lawsuits against bank of america, america's largest bank. the suit related to mortgage backed loans that went sour. the price tag on this one, $1.75 billion. banks are dropping fees, yes, you heard me right, banks are dropping fees. some of the country's largest banks are cutting slack for hurricane irene victims. jp morgan chase, wells fargo are waving fees like overdraft fees, late fees and atm fees for
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customers affected by the hurricane. if you're coping with irene's aftermath you might want to check out your bank and see if they're doing something similar. "american morning" will be right back after this break. [ male announcer ] you've climbed a few mountains during your time.
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just about 30 minutes past the hour. good morning to you. top stories now. president obama has declared major disasters in north carolina and also in new york. 43 people now dead in the storm. hundreds of people have been pulled from their homes in new jersey as floodwaters surge into towns there. close to 3 million people along the east coast still have no electricity. devastating wildfires burning out of control 50 miles west of dallas/ft. worth and it is growing. it's a 7500 acre fire. it's already destroyed about 30 structures and 120 homes have been evacuated. a live report from that area in our next hour. and to libya now where the fighting has triggered a humanitarian crisis in the capital. u.n. officials say 60% of
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tripoli is now without power, without water or sanitation and 2 million residents face dire food shortages. secretary general ban ki-moon of the u.n. says they need to get u.n. personnel on the ground as soon as possible. he says time is of the essence. now is your chance to talk back on one of the big stories of the day. the question this morning, are conservative women unfairly stereotyped. take a look at this month's issue of "elle" magazine. the headline, the best and rightest. the article labels these young conservative women "baby palins." and that stings. not because they dislike sarah palin, but because of all the negatives attached to palin thanks to the media and "saturday night live. ". >> ultimately what the bailout does is help those that are concerned about the health care reform that is needed to help shore up our economy to help, um, it's got to be all about job creation too. >> and i can see russia from my
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house. >> i don't know. is it. boom boom boom. >> karen agnus featured in the article and also founder of the conservative network of enlightened women says the palin brand has been so damaged by the media that the baby palin label serves the purpose of quickly stereotyping and delegitimizing us at the same time. not every conservative woman fits the palin stereotype of a gun toting, not so bright mother of five. like not all liberal women fit the stereotype of a man hating harry leg bra burner. but the author defends her work stating the women profiled are into guns and motherhood and low taxes. rather new conservative female ideology first introduced to the national political discourse by palin. so talk back this morning. are conservative women unfairly stereotyped? facebook.com/americanmorning.
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i'll read your comments later this hour. >> one of the best comments was unfairly stereotyped. that's an oxymoron, of course. most often are. for generations, labor unions have been a major force in politics an the economy. their influence helped build the nation's middle class. times are changing. >> 45,000 verizon workers, they're back on the job after the union called off a strike, even though they didn't get a new contract. poppy harlow joins us now. you spoke to one of the verizon families fighting on behalf of unions for years. what's changed? >> it's interesting. they went back to work as you said with no new contract and still going to fight for what they deem to be a good living for the benefits that they think they deserve and they need and what's interesting about this family, is that they've been fighting for these rights for four decades. >> my office, this is where i work. >> roger young jr. spends his days in man holes. suppliesing kablgs for verizon like his father did 40 years
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ago. are you a union proud family? >> definitely. absolutely. >> reporter: but lately it's not the phone lines they've been focused on. it's the picket line. >> we will win! >> reporter: verizon and its unions have been bargaining hard over ish sues that include contributions towards health care premiums, freezing pension plans and job security. >> verizon can hear us now. >> reporter: have unions lost their voice? are you afraid unions are dieing in america? >> i don't think they're dying. i think they're ill. >> reporter: once a part of the american way of life, membership has declined by the decade. in 1950, one third of american workers were unionized. today, it's a mere 11%. union members say outsourcing and technology have both contributed to eliminating some union jobs. >> no doubt unions overall have less bargaining power than they had 30, 20 years ago.
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they have less political power than they've had because, you know, they've shrunk as a share of the work force. >> do you ever feel like you're fighting for the survival of unions for your kids one day? >> i think i'm fighting for the survival of everybody's kids of unions some day. these are great jobs. >> unions are what made this country great. >> reporter: unions point to higher wages, guaranteed pensions for most members and better health insurance than their nonunion counterparts. all that, unions say, makes them strong contributors to overall economic growth. >> our economy is 72% driven by consumer spending. unless people have in their pocket money, they can't create that demand. we know that we can't have a low wage, high consumion society. >> there's a decline in the middle class but that decline in the middle class is directly related to the decline in unions. >> reporter: that's the bigger question. >> if unions were stronger i think the evidence from other countries and history is, we wouldn't have an extreme
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polarized income distribution the way we have it now. >> this is our fight for our lives. >> reporter: now, what roger young told me is that the reason that he and all those workers are going back to work is because they really believe that verizon is going to come to the table in the negotiation, the negotiations restart today. we'll see if that happens. a few interesting points, the importance of unions in washington, leading up to the election, and also looking back in history to 1929, the professor we spoke with in this piece unions were left for dead and then the resurgence of unions during the great depression. we'll see if we see that now. >> i remember doing a story in the 2008 election, union bosses, union leaders went door to door trying to convince their members to vote for barack obama because frankly union members weren't so hot on barack obama. they liked hillary clinton at the time. you have to wonder, how will these same union people feel about barack obama after, you know, the statistics we heard in your story. >> it's a very good point and there's two arguments.
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there's the argument in the numbers show it, that unions mean higher wages. across an industry, not just for union workers, but across an industry. the flip side of that, when you have the higher wages, then that can cause companies to want to outsource, to want to look elsewhere for workers. do they create jobs, do they create jobs in this country like they were telling us in this piece, or do they actually mean less jobs because they make it too expensive? >> and the backlash against unions from people who say because you have held on to benefits and pay packages so much better than the rest of the middle class. >> the average ununionized worker. >> you hurt yourself, your own negotiating ability because you're asking for something that's not reasonable in this economy anymore and you're actually hurting the standing the union doing that. >> saying that union members will sit at home and not vote for anyone. >> but if they don't help -- if they don't help democrats get elected they're not going to do any better under republicans. >> they're pretty disenfranchised right now. >> teachers have had their union troubles with what they see is
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their unions under attack, teachers are fired up. maybe they will be going out to vote. >> i think scott walker will be on piers morgan, the governor of wisconsin. >> i asked him last week, i said are teachers better off in your state today than before you were elected and -- >> you mean scott walker you interviewed? >> he said yes. his state is in better shape. >> i don't know. >> i love this topic. >> thanks. we're going to talk to the mayor of patterson, new jersey. as you know there have been water rescues going on there, still people to be evacuated. we'll get an update just ahead. >> can diet alone cure or prevent heart disease? dr. sanjay gupta has the surprising answer. it's 38 minutes after the hour. have i got a surprise for you!
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and a price based on the car's history. ask your dealer or go to carfax.com. just say, show me the carfax. mayor of patterson, new jersey. as you know there have been 41 minutes past the hour. good morning to you. waters raging again this morning in patterson, new jersey, at the passaic river crested late last
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night. thousands of people are still in temporary housing, evacuated from their flooded homes, including more than 3,000 people who were forced out of their high rise apartments. patterson joins six other new jersey towns calling for mandatory evacuations so how is the town doing this morning? patterson mayor jeffrey jones joins us now. mayor jones, welcome. >> thank you. good morning. >> so are there still evacuations under way? >> yes, ma'am. as we peek now, all it takes is someone to call and say they're under distress and we're going out and taking people to safety. >> do you have enough temporary shelters to house them all? >> yes. we do. if we find a need that arises as a result of evacuations, we're opening schools and whatever other properties we might have available to us and we have about 54 schools in the city. >> what kind of problems do you expect from here? because the water behind you is -- looks pretty scary, actually.
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>> well, what's going to happen is, once the water starts to recede, then we'll have to go into our second phase which is to go house to house and make sure that furnaces and hot water heaters that have gas and other kind of electrical components, that those things are checked before they get restarted, so as to avoid explosions and things of that nature. those are the it typical and traditional components that happen after you have flooding of this magnitude. >> you ordered people to evacuate these areas. for those who did not, for those rescue workers had to go in and rescue from their homes, what message do you have for them? >> i don't know that i have as much a strong or stern message for them. i understand panic has taken hold. i don't think folks were aware or nor were we as aware it could get this extreme. we encourage them to continue to pay attention to what we ask and they know that we'll be there, regardless of whether they adhere to our rules. what they've done is, those who
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chose not to go, put themselves in greater danger as well as the rescuers. we're going to hope folks pay more attention as we move forward. we're going to continue to be flooding, unless, of course, we have some help and support from the army corps of engineers and the state in terms of finding a different fix and remedy for this kind of condition. >> i just want to talk to you about fema for a second. we're not there yet in the state of new jersey or in paterson. but there's this fight in washington over fema funds and whether there will be enough money to go around. when you hear of a fight in congress over money -- over funding to fema, what goes through your mind? >> well, i'm outraged. i can only be outraged for those who can't speak for themselves, those who sit on capitol hill and don't quite understand america didn't put nous this place. we got here because the folks supposed to be paying attention, probably weren't or don't quite understand the magnitude of what we're all facing at this point
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in time. to find that mother nature has a mind of her own and will of her own, we can't have the petty wranglings going on when we have folks who are in dire need. i'm not comfortable nor am i happy, i'm very disappointed and i'm hoping, i still have hope, that folks who understand that this is a land of democracy and democracy means compromise and who compromise to get the job done. >> there has been well, ron paul, i'm sure you heard his comments about fema, that fema is unnecessary. from your perspective where you're sitting now, is fema necessary? >> well, fema is the only agency i know that comes in during disasters and provides relief and support to families of distre distress. you pick a condition by which it was considered to be extreme and what other agencies do we have that can go in there and provide that support? until there's a better response, a better answer to something like fema, fema is the best game in town and i'll stick with it. >> mayor jones, thanks so much
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for joining us. i know you're busy. we appreciate it. >> thank you. have a good day. time now for today's romans numeral. >> it's back. >> we're bringing it back. it's a number that gives you a little more clarity about a story, makes you think, boils it down into that wonky numbers way we like to do. companies sitting on piles of cash and at the same time, using the complicated american tax system to pay as little tax as humanly possible. as you know there's been a lot of talk recently about corporations pushing for lower tax rates, corporate tax rates. you might be surprised to learn how many of these big-time ceos earn more than their companies actually pay uncle sam in taxes. the romans numeral after the break.
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a lot going on. here's what you need to know to start your day. president obama has now declared major disasters in north carolina and new york after hurricane irene. rivers are cresting and water surging into towns in the northeast where hundreds have now been evacuated. 43 people are now dead because of this storm. a developing story out of northeast japan. a magnitude 4.7 earthquake has just rattled the coast about 86 miles northeast of fukushima. that's where officials are still trying to contain a nuclear disaster from a tsunami that hit back in march. 0% controlled.
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that's how officials describe a 7500 acre fire that's now spreading 50 miles west of dallas/ft. worth. this fire has burned about 30 structures to the ground, 125 others have been evacuated. the u.n. says the fighting in libya has left tripoli with a dire shortage of food and water, 60% of the capital said to have no water or sanitation. general david petraeus is retiring. he'll bid a formal farewell to the army in a ceremony today. the 58-year-old petraeus has his marching orders, sworn in as the new cry director next week. the ncaa susz spending 8 university of miami football players from receiving cash and gifts from a former booster. they have to pay back the amount they took before they're allowed to play again. former nba player va var ris crittenton will be arinds in a los angeles courtroom today. he's accused of shooting to death a 23-year-old mother in atlanta. "american morning" back in 60 seconds.
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♪ so can you cure heart disease just with food? our dr. sanjay gupta has living proof of it. it is part of his fantastic special report called "the last heart attack," which you can see this weekend on cnn. sanjay joins us live from atlanta now. you spent the last year looking into heart attack and heart disease for your special. you have a history of it in your family and you've really studied how people can get away from that and get out from under that. what if you don't want to use medicine, statins to reduce your risk of heart attack?
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can you really use food as medicine? >> it's interesting. i walked into this with an open mind. the answer is definitely yes, you can. we did find living proof of this. sharon kent is a woman we profiled. 66 and had a heart attack and told by her doctor she needed to have heart surgery and she said no and she basically adopted this plant-based diet. she has been very strict about it. whole grains and lots of vegetables and been doing it for over a year and it's quite remarkable not only in how much she has not had any symptoms of heart problems, but also in terms of her energy levels. this is something that i really focused on with her. she could barely walk before all of this and literally now a year later on this plant-based diet she is able to jump rope. take a look at that. she couldn't do that before. i'm not saying, obviously, being on a plant-based diet taught her how to jump rope but people
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question do you have enough energy still on one of these diets. we profiled her just to demonstrate. >> it's a pretty serious diet and extreme way to go. is there science that proves it's working, other than the fact she can jump rope and she is fit? >> well, yes. is there a couple of different things. first of all, people really oftentimes want objective signs to show that there is changes in someone's blood vessels and we talked about this before, ali. not just in terms of showing a slowing of heart disease but an actual reversing of heart disease. in order to prove that a patient would have to undergo another angiogram. sharon is doing so well and she said she had no need to undergo another angiogram. show you a patient. i don't know if you can appreciate this where the arrow is. a coronary blood vessel and where one of the narrowings looks like, a heart attack waiting to happen looks like. someone who decided not no to undergo surgery and instead using food as medicine.
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same spot here, the coronary blood vessel is essentially opened up. it's about the same normal caliber as the rest of the blood vessel. that is sort of what we are talking about here, ali, in terms of, you know, providing some sort of objective evidence. remarkably, despite the fact that, again, high hippocrates has talked about this a number years. >> we will talk again this week about the digit wafferent ways. the special is called "the last heart attack," do the patient who have been profiled and followed these diets to reduce their clogging of the arteries, have they presented heart attacks? >> yes. the study that basically pivoted me into saying we should do this as a full hour. it's still a relatively small study because this is some emerging science but dr. caldwell esleton followed patients for 12 years. what he found was six patients out of a group of about 18
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dropped out of the study and out of those six patients, they all had some sort of coronary event. two patients died and two patients needed bypass surgery. of the patients who stayed through and kept the diet and kept it going for 12 years most patients were able to do that. only one patient died. in an autopsy, that patient did not have any evidence of heart disease. >> wow. >> the evidence is pretty compelling. not only in terms of slowing down the progression but reversing it. these patients needed to have heart surgery and then they essentially needed no interventio interventio interventions whatsoever in a 12-year period. >> thank you, sanjay. you can see "the last heart atta attack" this saturday night, 8:00 eastern here on cnn. we asked you to talk back on the big story of the day. the question this morning are conservative women unfairly stereotyp stereotyped? yes, they are perceived as
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radical. they are mocked openly and humiliated by the press. the media and politics don't like conservative women. are conservative women lumped together? yes. unfairly? no. because they are closely alike. you can replace palin with bachmann and not even notice. they need more conservative women to step up and make their voices heard. women should be allowed to express their political views without retribution. the media has been allowed to stereotype women. the media is trying to scare women away from the conservative ideologue. keep the comments coming. thanks for your comments. >> very good ones. time for today's roman's numeral. we have brought it back. whether companies are paying their fair share of taxes. the question of last year's 100
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highest paid ceos how many earned more than their company paid in taxes? the answer? 25. 25 out of a hundred. according to the left leaning institute of policy studies. a liberal think tank and the report is called executive excess so you can see their pest when they come at it. some of the companies mentioned in this study verizon and pushing back deferring some of their tax payments to future years and others lowered because of investment or research or manufacturing. we have a complicated tax structure. no question. but in this report, it found that when you look at the outlay, not state level, but, you know, income taxes at the federal level, the charge here is that many of these companies that are complaining about a 35% tax rate are finding legal ways to aggressively not pay their percent. >> we know it's true a mantra out there we pay higher tacks than anybody else, some companies don't pay taxes at all. >> like ge?
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>> that one of the 25 ceos. 16.7 million dollars is the average pay for those 5 ceos. >> their companies are not paying back in taxes. >> ceo to worker 325 to 1 now. 325. that is your roman's numeral. >> happy to have it back. >> how is that for your breakfast? >> that is good to take to work this morning to make you seem smart, which you probably are already smart. >> this might be an excellent time for a commercial. coming up, governor dan malloy of connecticut will join us. irene ran over beach-front homes and then the floods came. he is asking for help. talk to him on the other side. 58 minutes after the hour. naturals from purina cat chow. delicious, real ingredients with no artificial flavors or preservatives. naturals from purina cat chow.
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i'm christine romans. new evacuations along rivers in the northeast days after hurricane irene hit. will he stay behind bars or free? i'm carol costello. the prime suspect in robyn
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gardner's disappearance in aruba is expected to learn his fate at a court hearing an hour from now. time is of the essence. i'm ali velshi. the u.n. secretary-general addressing the food crisis in libya. more than half of libya has no food or water. good morning, it's wednesday, august 31st. welcome to "american morning" this morning. >> good morning to you. the disaster after the storm, water is still rising three days after hurricane irene hit the northeast coast of america. 43 people now reported dead in 12 states and close to 3 million people still without power. connecticut has ordered new evacuations as water surges downstream from places farther north in new england and also along the state's shore line. there are sens of total devastation. alina cho is live for us in east haven, connecticut, which is
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east of new haven, connecticut. good morning, alina. >> carol, good morning to you. >> reporter: i am inside one of the homes that was decimated during hurricane irene and as we pull out wide, you can see there is not much left of it, except, amazingly, the flat screen tv is still intact. but really all you have to do is take a walk along this beach and you'll see that nearly every home was either damaged or destroyed. three days after hurricane irene, many residents are finally just getting back to their homes and they are finding so many of their homes were wiped out. >> the whole first floor is gone. this was the second floor actually. >> reporter: this is the second floor? >> yes. >> reporter: living room and kitchens and once one floor up in dino's home is hugging the beach at ground level. homes sheered in half by what many here call "the perfect
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storm." >> it's eerie. you come back and it's almost like it's so surreal. >> reporter: like this scene. people enjoying their summer, just feet away from total devastation. these are the pillars on which the homes were built to protect them ps this what is left after irene. one resident told me if it's if someone picked up their home, threw it, and stomped on it. all of the homes here flattened and reduced to rubble. >> we believe that we have 25 homes that are a total loss and maybe another 20 that are uninhabitable. >> reporter: adding to the heartbreak? cozy beach is tight-knit and many families have owned their homes for generations, like jim delushia. >> we did get a little water in here. that is very unusual. >> reporter: 65 of his 70 summers have been spent here. delusia says with the beach erosion over the years, owning a home on this beach is like
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playing russian roulette. >> it wasn't a question of if, it was a question of when. >> reporter: roberta ignored the mandatory evacuation order. what did you see? >> i saw the house coming down. i saw this coming down and coming at me. >> reporter: her mom was spareded but for dino and his family, there is little to salvage. yet, for him, leaving the area is not an option. >> i would not let this stop me from coming back. >> reporter: when you hear the name aren now? >> i won't be naming any of my daughters or pets irene. >> reporter: some of the homes in this area have been described as toppled doll houses. others, quite literally, were just sheared in half. the mayor tells me that there were no fatalities. not even any injuries and that is remarkable, considering what
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happened here to the homes. but it appears that most of the residents, not all, but most of them did heed the warnings. they did get out prior to the storm. as for the power situation, nearly 500,000 people are still without power in the state of connecticut. 15,000 right here in east haven. carol, when i asked the mayor when do you think they will turn the power back on, she said that is a very good question, i have no idea. carol? >> so many people are struggling with that. even in maryland, they are still, what, 250,000 people without power and who knows when the power will be turned back on. the people are getting mad about that now. the question i have for you, alina, whenever people see damaged homes along the water, in their mind, that little thing comes in where they say, why do those people live there anyway? this is quite an unusual event in east haven, isn't it? >> reporter: it most certainly is. listen. most of the residents i spoke to here, remember, these are families who have been in this
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area for generations, decades, and they tell me they have never seen anything like this. most of the residents, i should mention as well, carol, tell me that they do plan to rebuild. that is just how much they love this area. i did speak to one man, however, you heard him in the piece, jim delushia. he said i'm not so sure i will put money back in my home. over my lifetime 40 to 50 feet of beach has eroded and we knew it was going to happen, it was a matter of when, not if. he is not sure what is he going to do. i have to tell you, carol, it's incredible to hear, most of the residents do tell me they plan to rebuild and they do plan to come back. >> it's a beautiful place to live. alina cho live in east haven, connecticut. many thanks to you. in ten minutes we will talk with governor dan malloy of connecticut about the recovery effort in his state and the latest evacuation orders coming out. good-bye irene, hello katia.
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rob marciano, have we seen the worse and what is happening off the coast of africa we might need to worry about in terms of water up here? >> we may need to worry about something closer to home than that. take care of the rivers first. the passaic river has crested but remain in major flood stage until friday morning so the folks not able to get back to their homes for quite some time. the connecticut river is cresting on later today and tomorrow. still flooding in the lower half of connecticut proper. other than that most of the rivers have drained. the problems with the rivers across the northeast they rise quickly and drain quickly. that is why things were so tumultuous the last few days. katia is ramping up in a hurry and heading towards the u.s. but there is some hope that it veers away. we can't say that for sure yet but looking forward to that. wes
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west/northwesterly. that is expected to increase in intense witness a category 1 by tomorrow. category 2 by friday and potentially category 3 by sunday. taking an aim at the carolinas but historically, history tells us these type of storms with this type of trajectory have a good chance of veering off and being a gutter ball or heading to bermuda. we will update you appropriately in the coming days. more immediate is this concern. northwestern caribbean. our models are spinning it into something for the weekend. potentially a tropical storm into texas. that would be good. they could use the rain. if it sits in the gulf longer than that and has the potential of becoming something stronger and other models take it into the florida pan handle so bears watching there. wildfires across parts of texas
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and hot and humid conditions will not help that there so why they will take the tropical system if they can get it and heat up over a hundred in dallas and 89 in chicago. another lovely day across the northeast. if anything is a bright spot in this disaster is that the days immediately following irene have been cooperative as far as recovery and rescue efforts. guys? >> rob, thank you. now is your chance to talk back on one of the big stories of the day. the question for you this this morning are conservative women unfairly stereotyped? take this issue? "elle" magazine. they label the young conservative women as baby palins. not because they don't like sarah palin but the negatives attached to palin and thanks to the media and, of course, "saturday night live." >> ultimately what the bailout does is help those that are
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concerned about the health care reform that is needed to help shore up our economy to help -- it's got to be all about job creation too and i can see russia from my house! >> i don't know. is it? pow, pow, pow! >> karen agnes featured in the "elle" article says the palin brand has been so damaged by the media that the baby palin label serves the purpose of quickly stereotyping and delegitimatizing us at the same time. a gun-toting not so bright mother of five not like all liberal women are the stereotype of -- they are into guns and motherhood and low taxes. a rather new conservative female
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ideasology first introduced to the national political discourse by sarah palin. are conservative women unfairly stereotyped? respond at the address on your screen. do prosecutors in aruba have enough evidence to keep this man behind bars in connection with the disappearance of an american woman? a judge is expected to rule at a court hearing in less than an hour. he could -- he could walk free. a way to make 500 bucks easy but you have to wait until the other side of the break. it has something to do with computer. you're watching "american morning." i don't want you going out on those yet. and leave your phone in your purse, i don't want you texting. >> daddy... ok! ok, here you go. be careful. >> thanks dad. >> and call me--but not while you're driving.
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call or click to learn more. [ male announcer ] if you can't afford your medication, astrazeneca may be able to help. all right. irene dealt connecticut a 1-2 punch. first the storm ran over beach-front homes. then the floods came. the governor who toured the damage across the state said damages could reach in the hundreds of millions of dollars and asking the federal government for help. joining us now is the connecticut governor, dan malloy. welcome to the program. i want to reach out to everyone in your state and that is a, you
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know, we are feeling for you because this is still happening. even as -- media types arguing whether there was too much hype or not enough hype, this is still playing out for you, isn't it? >> yeah. i think the conversation of hype is being hyped. the reality is people of connecticut are hurting and 32% of our population is without power days after this event. we have had homes destroyed and infrastructure destroyed. we are now experiencing extensive flooding along the connecticut river basin. i just drove by the river. it's higher than i've ever seen it before. you know, there are incredible things going on and i think this kind of post-hurricane analysis, whether some individuals call it a little too big for what actually happened, i think is a ridiculous conversation to be having right now. >> 32% of your state without power and a graphic here shows how significant that is and where these power outages are.
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i'm told this is even bigger power outages, you got to go back to gloria, i think, back in 1985. when do you think this power will come back online? >> no. let's be specific. >> sure. >> this is twice as bad as gloria with respect to the amount of damage done to the electric infrastructure of the state of connecticut. literally, twice as many people are without power for some portion of this storm and here we are days later. you know, connecticut is a small state. it is population is concentrated, one of the more urban states. but that belies the fact that much of our state is, in fact, rural and that we have major agricultural communities in our state and it's those portions of the state right now where the most pain is being inflicted. we have farms that are under water. we have streams and rivers overflowing their banks and we had this tremendous amount of wind damage done to the eastern
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portion of our state. we have communities, many communities still that are 80% to 100% without power. >> new york and north carolina got federal disaster declarations today. an important step in getting aid from fema and the kind of aid they are getting from fema. what about connecticut? what are you asking for? >> i suspect that that will come. certainly i've been on the phone with the officials at fema. two days ago, we had a long -- a conversation. we have filed the same paper work that they have filed and, clearly, we are in the midst of a disaster, so i suspect that will be coming and i certainly want it to happen as soon as possible. as i say, if, for some other reason, that it gives people hope that the experiences and the losses that they are currently having, there will be some assistance with respect to that at the end of the road. once they get through it. we're in the midst of it. i think that is one of the things that people aren't quite understanding out there, is although it's sunny outside, we
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are still experiencing the effects of this hurricane/tropical storm irene. >> ron paul is running for president. he says fema just gets in the way and wastes money and tells people they can't go home. what do you think about this political debate about fema and the federal role of disaster response? i mean, and, quite frankly, talk about, you know, dollar-for-dollar if you're going to fund fema you have to take a dollar from somewhere else. >> i think he's an idiot. >> that's blunt. that's quite blunt. >> well, let me -- we are spending 900 million dollars a week in wars and he is arguing about whether we should spend some amount of money? fema now has currently $900 million budget available to it. this is a ridiculous conversation. really don't understand what he is talking about and i'm not sure he does. >> i think i hear a frustrated democratic governor of
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connecticut who is frustrated -- >> no, listen. >> about the conversation about the hype about the storm, about whether fema should be what the priority should be for fema because you're in the middle of a mess right now. >> well, you know, it's not that. i'm a supporter of fema. listen. the reality is that this storm was handled in such a way that we have preserved hundreds of lives, without this warning system, without this system of response, we would not be standing here with as few people here who have died in this massive to determine storm that stretches from north carolina through quebec. for someone whose state es skaed this problem, although leading into this broadcast you were talking about wildfires in texas. for someone in texas to be talking about fema, perhaps being defunded, really does rise to idiocy and hypocrisy. what state has benefited than
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texas from years of disasters. let's concentrate. this is pure politics playing out across individuals' misery. >> daniel malloy, governor of connecticut, thanks so much and best of luck getting the power back on and helping the folks whose lives are underwater right now. >> thank you. >> sometimes simplicity are the most articulate. >> sometimes you get long answers if from some politicians. that is the shortest answer you can get. >> we are talking about people's misery. we are not talking about government programs otherwise. i think there is a distinction to be made. >> well, the argument -- i'm just -- i'm just presenting the other side. >> carol, you don't need to present the other side when there are people dead. >> i get it. i get it. i get it. but there is another side to the argument. >> sometimes i think there is not another side. >> i won't give it then.
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isn't that what cnn does? >> you've been saying for three days it is overhyped and maybe we should think about it. >> that's not true. it's just part of the conversation. i'm not giving my personal beliefs on this. i'm giving ron paul's side of the story. >> we had ron paul on and he gave his side of the story. >> i'm giving it again for those who didn't watch it that particular day. ron paul say people should have insurance and take care of their own and states should be able to handle their own crises is what ron paul believes. >> we had him on this morning. he did not say that. he says fema comes in and tells you what to do and interferes. >> with state officials but we only had a tiny sound bite from ron paul, not his entire argument. >> after the commercial, we will run ron paul's statement again. >> i heard that statement. i am just broadening his argument as ron paul would present it. >> in any case, let's move on. we are talking about that wildfire in northern texas which is something that even governor malloy mention inside northern texas. two dozen structures destroyed. you got a hundred more in harm's
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way. we are going to take you to texas. not for the politics. but for the big wildfire there and give you the latest on that. and tell you how to make 500 bucks easy from facebook. you'll never guess how but it's interesting. if have you a little bit of a way with computers you might be able to make quick money after the break. 32 minutes after the hour. [ male announcer ] you can never have too much expertise.
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"minding your business" this morning. more buzz about another round of stimulus for the economy pushed stocks higher yesterday in late in the session. the feds had not officially announced any new measures but news additional stimulus was just discussed during the federal reserve's last meeting was enough to encourage
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investors. a new study says 25 of the 100 highest paid ceos in america were paid more than last year than their companies paid in income taxes. that is according to a report by a left leaning washington i think tank. cnn rah reached out to some of the companies for comment. so far, no responses. want to make a buck from facebook? try hacking their website. the company is offering $500 to anyone who can hack into the social networking site and prove it. so far facebook has doled out 40,000 in finder's fees. check out the all new cnn/money.com. "american morning" will be back after the break.
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top stories now. president obama has declared major disasters in north carolina and also new york. 43 people are now dead in this
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storm. hundreds of people have been pulled from their homes in new jersey, as floodwaters there surge into towns days now after the storm has moved out. close to 3 million people on the east coast still have no power. you just heard the governor of connecticut saying that it's twice as many power outages from 1985 hurricane gloria which was the real ballots for them. >> about a third of the state still without power. elsewhere. a devastating wildfire is spreading fast. 50 miles west of dallas/ft. worth. it's a 7,500 acre fire and burned 30 structures to the ground and 125 others have been evacuated. officials say the blaze is zero percent contained and it's growing. new details to tell you about this morning about the suspect in the disappearance of american robyn gardner in aruba who is missing the past month. the last person to see her alive was gary giordano. they flew to aruba together nearly a month ago. he has been detained while police vegetable. later today a judge will decide
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if there is enough evidence to keep on holding him. martin savidge joins us from aruba. where do things stand? >> reporter: we are standing outside now what is called for correction institute for aruba and gary giordano's home the past two weeks but it could change and could change as early as this morning when he is expected to go before a judge. the way the process works on this particular island is that every so often, in this case, 16 days ago, he went before jauj and the judge said we are holding you for 16 days. now he is before the judge and the prosecution is asking for more time. but the bar of evidence has been raised because it's the third time he has gone before a judge and now the prosecution has to give a pretty good case. the question is do they really have it? here is what we know. they have witnesses that claim that gary giordano's story they were snorkeling on the beach didn't happen. they didn't see the couple in the water snorkeling when they
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said they were. also $1.5 million insurance policy that gary giordano took out on robyn gardner days before they went on the trip and now she has vanished and that looks suspicious to authorities. the defense attorneys will say that may be some kind of motive in your mind but that is not proof. he has already been held on this island nearly a month and far longer than he should have been held and it's nothing more than an accident. according to the defense, he should be let go and we expect a decision from the judge before the day sow. if he is freed he could be on his way home this evening or possibly tomorrow. >> thank you, martin. in new jersey search and rescue teams going door-to-door to check for residents. the water is gushing in so quickly in new jersey there wasn't a lot of time to get out. in patterson the water in the streets is over 15 feet high in some places. we spoke to the city's mayor just a short time ago and asked him about the fight over fema
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funding in washington at a time like this. >> i'm outraged. i can only be outraged that those who can't speak for themselves, for those who sit on capitol hill and don't quite understand that america didn't put us in this place. we got here because the folks who are supposed to be paying attention probably weren't or don't quite understand the magnitude what we are all facing at this point in time. to find that mother nature has a mind and will of her own, we can't have the petty wranglings going on when we have folks in dire need. >> also hit is little falls. our mary snow joins us from there live. good morning, mary. >> reporter: good morning, christine. i know you live in new jersey and you have seen these falls. they are usually a lot calmer. just take a closer look. this is the passaic river. we talk about the gushing waters. hard to believe this is much calmer than it was just 24 hours ago. and what residents here are being told is that wild water is
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receding, that the river is expected to be above flood stage until at least friday. so the mayor is telling residents it's impossible right now to estimate when the cleanup operations are going to get under way. there were a number of cities and towns here in passaic county that were forced to evacuate because of rising waters on tuesday. one of those cities, patterson, new jersey. used to flooding this became too much. as people could no longer get out of homes on their own in patterson, new jersey, rescue crews in boats had to bring them to safety from adults to babies. the passaic river hit levels not seen in more than a century. this woman had gone to her mother's house with her two children. 30-year-old connell kelly said he ignored evacuation orders because he has experienced many floods before. he lives on the second floor, but when waters topped the door
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to his building, he waited by his window for help. >> i have water, you know, i had things left to survive with so i was pretty much there but it just got scary to me, you know? at the time where i see the water keep elevating and elevating, i know i had to leave. >> reporter: this father and son swept away by currents. this youtube video shows crews rescuing them. they were said to be checking on their property when the water took hold of them. rescue crews later found them holding on to a log. >> they were scared. they were more scared than anything. they were holding on and they yelled out in the beginning. a lot of people around. they were able to see. i couldn't get to them and they were the ones screaming. >> reporter: while patterson has a history of flooding, city officials say what is different this time is that some areas not prone to flooding were under water. it's just one of several communities in northern new jersey seen here on monday that have been inundated by water following the heavy rains dumped by hurricane irene. we want to show you some
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pictures this morning of patterson, new jersey. some of those waters are receding. the mayor, though, saying that he expects there will still need to be some evacuations with people trying to come out. it's a beautiful day here in new jersey. christine, county officials are saying last night that while waters are receding, it could take several days before -- or some towns that is, could be under water in passaic county for several days. >> school starts this week or next, depending on the district. it's going to be a little hairy in the meantime while they figure out whatted top. some town over the hill perfect fine and trees down. as soon as you get down near the river, wow. a lot of water. mary snow, thanks. over in texas, they have never seen so many fires in a single year. a record 3 1/2 million acres have been burned so far and not over yet. the latest fire is raging 50 miles west of dallas/ft. worth, well over two dozen structures
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destroyed and more than a hundred others are in harm's way and have been evacuated. ground zero for this widening disaster is possum kingdom lake, texas. kttv joins us live this morning is stephanie. what is the situation there, stephanie? all right. we can't hear stephanie right now. we will work on getting her audio back in in a few minutes and get a live report. the situation there it is zero percent contained. authorities are telling us that it is, in fact, growing. this has been ongoing in texas. there have been a lot of wildfires, particularly since that area has been going through a drought for more than the last year or so. so we will continue to cover that story. the fires in west texas in a moment. i think we might have stephanie lucero back. can you hear me? >> reporter: i can. >> sorry about that. we had an audio problem. you are close to this.
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tell us what is going on? >> reporter: a lot of heart broken families out here. 30 families lost their homes yesterday and, overnight, it seemed like the fire settled down, at least that is what fire officials told us. right now, we are watching as flames start to flare up again. more than 100 homes are in jeopardy today and those who lost their homes yesterday are just devastated. >> happened so quickly and i was thinking, not again. >> this time, it happened like now. before we knew it was coming, it was taking time. >> reporter: the winds are expected to top out today at about 25-mile-per-hour gusts. firefighters would like to prevent a repeat of yesterday but it's just going to be tough, because the terrain here in north texas is so dry. we are in the midst of a serious drought and there is no rain in the forecast for today or tomorrow. the winds are expected to kick up and we are also experiencing a lot of embers here in the
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area. back to you, ali. >> stephanie, thanks. we will stay on top of the story to see how it's going. still to come this morning, the growing crisis in libya. a severe shortage of food, water, and medicine in tripoli and no place to go. a live report from tripoli is just ahead. young conservative women are not too pleased about one magazine calling them, quote, baby palins. we will find out why. it's 39 minutes past the hour. wow, it's a great deal.
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we have been talking about this all morning long about a story in "elle" magazine. it has an article calling women called baby palins. not because they dislike sarah palin but because of the negatives attached to sarah palin thanks to the media and "saturday night live." the editor in chief has this to say.
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we are joined now by three of the women profiled in that article, karen agnes founder the network of enlightened women. alyssa cordova. and ashley sue is a conservative activist. thank you for being here. >> good morning. >> karen, let me start with you, because you've been the most outspoken about this. explain to us why the term baby palin is not such a good term. >> it's inaccurate, carol. none of us identified as baby sallins and none of us became engaged in the political debate as a result of governor palin on the national scene. i started a book club for conservative women on campus in 2004 and two of the other women who were interviewed 9/11 as their inspiration. so it's an inaccurate label. >> alyssa, do you admire sarah
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palin? is she a role model? >> yeah. i admire sarah palin a lot and i know a lot of other young women who do as well. i didn't particularly take offense to the term. i probably wouldn't label myself as a baby palin, but i also, you know, wouldn't expect a self-proclaimed liberal feminist like nina buehrle to necessarily give me a very nice title or anything like that. i think out of of all the things she could have called us it's not too bad. i know a lot of conservatives who think the label is more of a compliment. >> you brought up the term liberal feminist. the author saying she wasn't out to do a puff piece and wanted to talk about the unusual or interesting aspects of your politics. as for the baby palin line, she
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said you are all into guns and motherhood and low taxes, a rather new conservative female ideology first introduced to the national political discourse by palin. so, ashley, i'll ask you this question. why is it wrong? why is the comparison negative, at least in karen's mind? >> well, i'll agree with karen 100%. it's not anything that is offensive but it's not something that i identify with. you know, i didn't get involved politically because sarah palin was there leading the way, if you will. so for me, it was -- it was more of a personal action and choice based on my experiences. but, you know, sarah palin is definitely an asset to the movement and i i don't necessarily agree with it, i don't identify with it, but i don't think it was a fun suit either. >> got you. i'll just read a little bit more about what the author of this article said, because you
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brought up this liberal feminist thing. author told us that -- i want to quote her. she said all of you claim feminism made it impossible or dishonorable for women to stay home with the kids when in fact, none of them do that anyway and fail to give any proof of how the women's movement dishonored motherhood. i guess some liberal feminists out there might see you as ungrateful. karen, i'll throw that ball to you. >> well, she brings up a good point about the motherhood versus career choice. and i think one of the things that is really frustrating with feminism today is rather than really giving women a choice, they have made the choice for us. on college campuses where a lot of us organize, you know, careers are really focused rather than motherhood. i think you have to recognize being a mother and focusing on that is very valuable to society. >> what if i said to, well, geez some feminist value motherhood
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too. >> that's great. i think more feminists we need out there to be vocal about it and that is what is important. >> i want to get your us that on michele bachman. kathy lean parker had than interesting op-ed out there saying some call michele a diva because she spends so much on her hair and makeup and sometimes she is late to events because she is putting on her lipstick. alys alyssa, when you hear this, what goes through your mind? >> i think if that is all they can find to criticize her about, she is doing pretty well. i think it's really silly. i hate to beat a dead horse but there is john edwards with his 400 dollar haircut. these kinds of things are interesting to a lot of people. because they like to label others as superficial but i don't think it's wrong or bad that michele bachmann cares what she looks like. i think you can embrace your
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femininity the way you look and still be a smart, intelligent woman and it doesn't say anything about her character that she cares about her hair and her makeup. >> it's interesting you say that because you look at the way michele bachmann dresses wearing sleeveless dresses and open-toed sandals which is quite different that we usually see of a presidential candidate. the only thing i can liken it to is hillary clinton and her pant suits, right some when you see sarah palin dressing like this, what message does that send to you? >> well, i think that it's fantastic to see women just embracing their femininitfemini. i don't see any problem with open-toed shoes. i don't have a problem, obviously, with sleeveless dresses or blouses. i think you can still convey professionalism. you can be as articulate as anybody else. i think it's fantastic. >> lastly, why do you think rick perry is ahead of michele bachmann? >> i think he has had a strong
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executive record and i think people want a new president that is really going to create jobs and he has done that in texas. >> karen, alyssa, ashley, thank you for a very interesting conversation this morning. appreciate it. >> thank you. >> thank you. >> about the makeover. everyone in the world know a lot of stage craft no mat the political party and part of the stage craft, true? >> good discussion. >> 49 minutes after the hour. o , they're backed by the superguarantee®? only superpages®. wherever you are, wherever you're going, you'll find the super business you need. so next time, let the good guys save the day. get the superguarantee®, only at superpages®. . . on yo. [ male ] using clean american fuel is just a pipe dream. ♪ [ female announcer ] we're rolling away misperceptions about energy independence. did you know that today
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with libya rebels controlling tripoli a humanitarian crisis is emerging with shortage of food and water and medicine. >> dan rivers is live for us in tripoli. dan, what is the situation in tripoli, now that the rebel government, the transitional national government is in control of it? things still pretty bad on the street? >> reporter: well, the fighting has stopped. that's great news. there is no more pockets of resistance in tripoli itself. the port behind me now is open as well and that is another bit of good news so ships are already beginning to come and go today and yesterday and that is going to be a vital supply line to get food and water into this city. food is not so much in short supply, but water is because it's being cut off from the
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pumping plants way down south about 400 or 500 miles south of the capital so, at the moment, people are getting by on tanker deliveries which are ferrying water back and forth from wells and some individual houses have wells but the water shortage is critical here at the moment. >> reporter: dan, we are looking at some pictures of what we are seeing there. you got the water shortages. looks like people are siphoning petro from car-to-car. the people who were there and supporting the liberal troops and now it's liberated is there an overall plan to get libya moving again and getting tripoli moving again and becoming a functional economy? >> reporter: well, the national transitional council, the new government, claim there is a plan. they said that they would have the water up and running within a few days. the problem is that to the
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south, there is still forces loyal to colonel gadhafi who are controlling that area which is where the pumping plants are for the walkter, for example. fuel is another big problem. the coastal highway below me here is now open so that should begin to alleviate the fuel shortages. they can start to bring that in. there is a degree, though, of factionalism of the different rebel groups on the ground now controlling tripoli. you know, groups from misrata and from the western mountains and ben ghazi. they are getting along okay but there is a sense that all of these forces need to be galvanized into one cohesive government and administration and, at the moment, that is not really happening at the moment. there is an awful lot to do to get this economy and city back on its feet. >> dan, the work of nation building always much more complicated than we think it is going to be. dan, thanks very much. this is always the problem. we have been waiting for so long
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for the liberation of libya and as it comes, now we worry about how do they move on their own, how do they get things going? >> and who pays for it. >> moammar gadhafi, the infrastructure is not just there for somebody else to step in and take over. coming up next, our talkback question of the day and we will read through some of your responses. it's 55 minutes past the hour. to future generations. at northern trust, we know what works and what doesn't. as one of the nation's largest wealth managers, we can help you manage the complexities of transferring wealth. seeking to minimize taxes while helping maximize what's passed along. because you just never know how big those future generations might be. ♪ expertise matters. find it at northern trust. two of the most important are energy security and economic growth. north america actually has one of the largest oil reserves in the world.
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all right. we asked you to talk back on the big story of the day. our question this morning are conservative women unfairly stereotyped? brian says unfair but not true. some people don't like how they are painted perhaps they should listen to the things they say. lee says i'm a conservative woman because i'm a mother first and foremost. i have to think about my children's future. that does not include toting guns or seeing alaska from my house, i think she meant russia from my house. it's like palin and bachmann have

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