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tv   CNN Newsroom  CNN  April 12, 2011 11:00am-1:00pm EDT

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going to washington. 21 museums have expressed interest in giving them a loving home. people will gather together to mark the moment the first shots of the civil war were fired 150 years ago today. confederate troops fired on union forces at ft. sumpter triggering the deadliest concept in u.s. history. now it's time to join suzanne malveaux. >> can you imagine how high the prices are? it costs so much to fill the tank now. -- captions by vitac -- >> maybe we'll bike to work. >> i'm not going to mike. i want to get you up up to date for tuesday, april 12. the anguished faces confirm what
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they feared. they'll probably never return to homes. inside the evacuation zone. japan's government admitted as much today. it raised the nuclear alert to 7, the maximum on the international scale. that puts the fukushima crisis on the same level as chernobyl. evacuees note the irony. >> reporter: that sign was realized. the last 40 years tepco has only been saying the nuclear power is safe. there's no chance of a meltdown. we feel we've all been betrayed. >> reporter: do you think your downtown will ever be filled with people again? no, they say. two major aftershocks, one a 6.2 magnitude shook central and northeastern japan today. similar sized quakes triggered mud slides on monday killing six people. in the months since the inashl
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9.2 earthquake, more than six aftershocks have rocked japan. gunfire rang out in ivory coast capital city today despite pleas by the new president for calm. he says his presidential rival will face charges. he was arrested on monday, following days of fighting. libthey allowed him to fly talk to the opposition. he's the most prominent of the regime to defect. unconfirmed reports say he may be looking for a role with libya's rebels. he's expected to return to britain. misrata, libya's third largest city remains under siege
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by gadhafi's fighters today. witnesses have been killed in the latest street fighting. two of the dead were toddlers. the british and french foreign ministers complained today that nato is not doing enough to protect civilians. in new york today, federal investigators are trying to figure out what went wrong at jfk last night. an air france airbus, 380, the world's biggest passenger jet, clipped a commuter plane, spinning it at a 45-degree angle. cn jim bitter minnesota was actually aboard the airbus headed to paris. >> pulling away from the gate, going around 30 miles an hour, something like that. made the turn away from the gate. it sounded to me like maybe they hit a rough patch or pavement or something like that. but they immediately stopped the plane. i would say within a minute or two the fire trucks started
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arriving around the plane. the house vote on the budget deal that averted a government shutdown has been now pushed back a day. it had been scheduled for wednesday. the republican leadership now says that vote is going to happen on thursday. and washington, d.c., mayor vincent gray is out on bail today. police arrested him and four others during a protest outside a senate office building. the mayor says that republicans used the budget deal with the president to squeeze the district's financial autonomy. the bill bars the city from spending money on abortions for low income women. >> frankly what i would suggest is that congress butt out of the business of the district of columbia. i've heard no rationale for how they should spend their money. aaa says gas prices inched up two penny just a day.
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it averages $3.79 a gallon. four states have average gas prices above $4 a gallon. the nags tional record set in 2 was $4.11 a gallon. now back to our top story. japan's nuclear crisis. now raised to a level 7. now that is the highest severity rating for nuclear accidents. we're getting reaction. >> reporter: the crisis of the fukushima nuclear plant no among the worst in the history. the government raising the crisis from a 5 level on par with the three mile island accident to a 7. a major accident declaration. the same as a chernobyl nuclear disaster. the change in the level reminds us this accident have very big, says the government's point man in the crisis. i apologize to the resident os
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testi of the area and the people of the community. activists aren't accepting the apology. >> reporter: greenpeace calls the elevation woefully late. they tested the soil in a town outside the mandatory evacuation zone and found dangerous levels of radiation saying the disaster is much worse than what the government suggests. the anti-nuclear group called for a test three weeks ago. >> from our point of view it's even worse than chernobyl because we have three reactors with huge problems with radio activity. the one reactor has lost a lot of spent fuel. on top of that, when an accident happens, it's quite a densely populated area.
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>> reporter: the people who live near the plant, now evacuees, whether a number 5 or a 7, don't matter. the towns remain empty. they may never be able to go home again. the residents say they're beyond anger and hatred. they simply lost everything. >> reporter: we lost something so big, it's unimaginable. we just don't know what to say. >> japan's nuclear regulation agency says there's no way. the prime minister in a nationally televised news conference says progress at the plant is being made step by step, but there's still no room for optimism. kyung lah, cnn, tokyo. now is your chance to talk back. one of the big stories of the day. today we're talking about gas prices. no matter where you live, you've seen the costs go up. we're all dealing with it. more than 50 bucks now fill my
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tank. >> i know. it's crazy. we're going to hit $4 a gallon all over the country. >> i want to know who to blame. >> politicians blaming politicians for high prices. instead of doing somebody it, everyone is pointing fingers. in the meantime you're paying more for gas again. on facebook ex-~ governor and ex-vice-presidential candidate sarah palin blasted it saying his war on oil and gas exploration and production has caused us pain at the pump, endangered our already sluggish ek knowledgic recovery and the threatened our national security. she called the president the $4-per-gallon president. they hit $4.11 in 2008 under president bush. but there's enough blame to go
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around. the wall street oil speculators who keep betting up the price of crude. democrats want more controls on those spem laters. some of the gas and trucking industry agree but republicans generally oppose such restrictions, and even 07% of gas stations say people have been buying less gus, we still love our suvs and hybrid trucks. states like texas might raise the speed limit to 85 miles per hour. that's not exactly great for good gas mileage. so is it libya, wall street, or us? talk back today. who do you think is to blame for high gas prices? write to me at, carol@cnn. >> i'm not riding a bike to work. >> i rode my bike this morning -- not.
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>> i'm like really? all right. i can't wait to hear what people are going to say. >> thanks. here's what we have ahead. on the run down, forensic teams now are scrambling to identify what could be a serial killer's ninth victim. and burglars foiled, caught on video. japan's nuclear crisis, now officially on par with the disaster at chernobyl. plus, a combo pill that could be the new weight loss wonder drug. and -- >> i'm going to put my shampoo and my conditioner into ziploc bags, and this fits much nicer. >> it kind of fits around the items that are in a bag. >> a flight attendant dishes on flying stress-free. ttd# 1-800-30
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so you can unleash the power of your most valuable asset: your people. >> female announcer: sandals luxury included resorts now include a once-in-a-lifetime offer: book now, save up to 65%. call 1-800-sandals. the investigation of a possible serial killer targeting young women now stretches into two new york counties. authorities found what appears to be a human skull in nassau county yesterday. sin since yesterday they have found
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multiple bodies. till us what they're saying about the latest discovery. >> reporter: suzanne, police said yesterday they were absolutely stunned to find the remains, not only the skull but also a set of bones as well. yesterday was the first day they had actually searched here in nassau county to the east of me. in suffolk county is where they found the other remains that has been dragging on for a year. eight remains have been found in suffolk county. this is about as desolate a spot as you can be in in the new york city/metropolitan area. a barrier island that stretches for more than 15 miles east of where we're standing right now. the four bodies that originally were discovered back in december, they have been identified. the other items have not. the other remains have not. but those four bodies, they turned out to be women who had been working as prostitutes, who
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had advertised on craigslist. >> i mean we have eight sets in suffolk county already. we have two more now. it's all been very startling. i don't have a reaction to you because it's amazing that we're finding these things. obviously we have a lot of work to do. >> reporter: the work is ongoing o. the medical examiner now checking everything he possibly can with regard to those remains. that happening here in nassau county, and the work continues in suffolk county as well. now, let's step back. this story all start when this woman, shannon gilbert, went missing about a year ago not far from here. she also had been working as a prostitute. she had not been found. he remains, if she is dead, have not been found. >> allan, do police think a sungle person is responsible for all these killings? >> reporter: they're certainly
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not ruling out any possibility. it was a little while ago that the police in suffolk county said, you know what? it looks like we have a serial killer on our hands. certainly it's possible there's more than one. they just don't know. >> thank you very much. other stories acause the country. honolulu police are looking for two would-be robbers. they had their sights set on diamonds. try as they may, they could not break the glass on display cases. firefighters from all over the u.s. are in texas to help corral at least ten huge wildfires. more than 300,000 acres have burned so far. close to a hundred homes now destroyed. making matters worse, winds are kicking back up to around 20 miles an hour. and from here in los angeles -- >> i feel bad for that kid.
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i hope he comes out of that coma. >> tommy la sore da talking about brian stowe. he's the giants fan brutally beaten at the dodgers opener two weeks ago. they raised money for stowe and his family. police are still looking for his attackers. president obama does a 180 from senator obama's decision of raising the debt limit.
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i want to tell you about three great stories. only one of them's going to air the next hour. you let us know which story you would like to see. all you've got to do is vote by texting. here are the choices. first, you notice every time you fill the gas tank, prices are soaring and the wallet feels a little bit lighter. what's behind this and what's being done about it? next, a cop, a baby squarl and a can of mace. the police officer says he was trying to protect kids from the potentially dangerous animal. hear what the kids say. and finally, did you ever wonder what it would be like to be a princess? well, our richard quest goes to the school that teaches the courtesy, the walk, and the royal way. vote by text 2g 2360. text 1 for soaring prices, 2 for
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cop and squirrel and 3 for princess school. now i want to give you a quick check on cnn's top story. corporate chiefs now taking home the most pay in 2010. some saw their compensation more than double, even tripful you can believe it, up from a year earlier. ford ceo made $26.5 million. i want to take a look at the stock market as well. looks like the dow jones down 138 points or so. i want to also talk about tomorrow. president obama outlining his plan for dealing with the nation's ballooning deficit. he's also calling on congress to decrease the debt limit to prevent what kmicheconomists wo say is a bad idea. pop says the fact that we are here today to debate raszing
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america's debit limit is a sign of leadership failure. leadership means that the buck stops here. instead washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. here's what the white house said about it this week and back in january. >> the president used it to make a point about needing to get serious about fiscal discipline. >> the president regrets that vote and thinks it is a mistake. he realizes now that raising the debt ceiling is so important to the health of this economy and the global economy that it is not a vote that even when you are protesting an administration's policies, you can play around with. >> a sign of the times of just how bad things are getting. the white house warns of economic armageddon if congress doesn't raise the debt ceiling. take a look at the national debt
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through the last 20 years or so. through the roof with expenses like social security and military operations. now there is more than 14 trillion bucks worth of debt. i want to bring in oural al our alison kosik to explain all this. what would happen, alison, if we didn't raise the debt ceiling? >> in a nutshell it means the government can't borrow any more money, it can't pay its bills. it's like if you reach your credit card bill. what do you do? you cut your spending or ask the bank to extend your limit. here's what happens. tim geithner said the government's payments would be stopped or delayed at best. i think of what the government funds. military pay would be affected. social security. unemployment benefits, they're into this as well. for many people across the country, these checks are
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lifelines, suzanne. it's how people live. it really is a big deal. >> what about the broader economy? what kind of effects would we see? if the government can't pay its bills, how would everyone see this? >> you would see it around the world. analysts say the recession we just got out of, the recessions in the past would pale in comparison. it's almost unthinkable that we'd default on our debt. the government has its own credit score and what it has is top notch. that's what attracts people. if it default its rating would drop for the first time ever. analysts say you would see the bond market crash, u.s. dollar would fall and money would be pulled out of the stock markets. you'd definitely see it in things like your 401(k). it would be tough.
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if you're keeping scores on your numbers, we're about $70 billion away from hitting the debt ceiling. suzanne? >> alison kosik, thank you for breaking it down. as we mentioned, president obama lays out his plan for deal ing with the deficit. that's going to happen tomorrow. we're going to have live coverage of it right here on cnn. also japan's chernobyl. we're going to look at how the world's worst nuclear disasters compare. ♪ ♪
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ahead on the rundown, the fukushima nuclear disaster and the one at chernobyl in the '80s, they now share the highest severity rating. >> plus, the combo pill that could revolutionalize the weight loss industry. and there are techniques for traveling like a pro. a flight attendant breaks them down for us. it was the first image any of us imagined when the nuclear crisis in japan began. chernobyl, the worst disaster at a nuclear power plant ever. today japan is confirming what so many of us suspected, that the nuclear crisis ranks as high as chernobyl. the alert level has been raised from 5 to 7, the highest level possible. now officials admit that damage to the plant caused by last month's earthquake and tsunami could cause substantial long-term consequences for health as well as the
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environmental. what did chernobyl look like back then? does it give us a picture of what we're dealing with now? >> reporter: it's a massive concrete structure built to contain the world's worst nuclear disaster the world has ever known. an explosion in ukraine in 1986 shows us how high the stakes could be in producing nuclear power. >> it is unconscionable in this tragedy here that they're not coming forth in a new spirit of frankness and openness. >> reporter: the numbers are staggering. according to the world health organization, 240,000 clean-up workers received high levels of exposure in their attempts to contain radioactive debris. 28 of them died that year and public health experts believe that as many as 4,000 of those exposed to the disaster died later of cancers linked to chernobyl. children were also impacted.
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5,000 cases of thyroid cancer were diagnosed among ukraine's victims exposed to the leak. in all, nearly 350,000 people were forced to abandon their homes. as a radioactive cloud blew over ukraine, belarus, and russia. and the psychological damage. chernobyl led to mavis relocations, a shot to the economy, and mutations in animal and plant life in the surrounding region, a no man's land of 36 miles still surrounds the chernobyl site. now a chilling confession from the japanese government. the nuclear nightmare in japan is now ranked with chernobyl. when scientists talk about clean-up efforts, they don't speak in terms of months or years but centuries. so four weeks into japan's nuclear crisis, it's clear we're still in the beginning of what will be a very long and difficult story.
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>> well, there are some stark differences, however, between japan and chernobyl. japan is more of a slow leak. still, the japanese government has already evacuated 85,000 people from within 12 to 18 miles of the power plant. let's get a clearer perspective of the nuclear crisis. our michael freelander is a former operator at three nuclear power plants. he joining us via skype from hong kong. thanks for being here. you saw our piece here on chernobyl. it may be too soon to compare this with fukushima, but they've both received the highest alert ranging. tell us how different they are and how similar they are? >> for one thing i think it's important to put it into a bit of context. the upreading, so to speak, going from a 5 to 7 was actually
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a consequence of authorities going back and looking at data and pewter modeling that happened in the early onset of the accident when the dramatic explosions that we saw on tv, when those big releases occurred. it's important because a lot of people i've spoken to today are worried that all of a sudden things have taken a dramatic turn for the worse, when, in fact, they haven't. now, there's some measure of consolation in that we can make the comparisons or chernobyl and things like that. one thing that absolutely for certain. we have a pretty good handle of what's on the ground. teams have been taken out, taken out the geiger counters. that's not to say this isn't going to be a massive effort over the next decades in order to cle clean up. but i think we have a good handle on exactly what's on the ground and what's necessary to clean it up.
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>> do we know if it's worse than chernobyl, it's equal or we have a better sense that this is not as dangerous as chernobyl? >> well, some of the figures that i saw today -- again, these are estimates. nobody has a hard handle on any other case for that matter, either chernobyl or the reactor. but some of the commuter modeling or what was going on at the time, they've actually done some pretty reasonable estimates. i heard people say it ranges from about 10% of the size of chernobyl. >> in terms of comparing it to the size, it's about 10%. so it's not as dramatic. what about the rating? does it tell us anything about the radiation exposure or the condition of the plant or the long-term impact? >> no, it doesn't. the rating system was devised more than ten years ago by international agreement.
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>> what does it tell us? >> there are almost 500 different plants. there was an attempt to put everybody on equal footing. the categorization of a seven basically means that it was a really bad accident. that ee about the only characterization you could make. so if you're looking at this accident compared to other ones in other countries, everyone is reporting on a common basis. it really doesn't give you any notion of exactly how bad it is or what the level of effort is going to be. >> okay. michael friedlander, i appreciate you giving us perspective. tell us what story you'd like to see in the next hour. text 22360. text 1 for what's behind the soaring prices at the pump, text 2 for the cop and the squirrel on text 3 for a peek inside princess school where our own
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richard quest learns to act like royalty. the winning story will air in the next hour. if you wish you could have waved a magic wand or popped a pill to lose weight youk're going to hear from elizabeth cone. she's going to talk about a weight loss pill combo. now aveeno brings all five factors of radiance together with positively radiant spf 30. with active naturals soy, it's now proven to visibly transform all five factors of radiance; tone, texture, blotchiness, dullness and brown spots. so now the definition of radiant skin... you're looking at it. [ female announcer ] positively radiant. and try skin brightening daily scrub, only from aveeno. discover the power of active naturals.
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well, everybody's wondering if there's a quick easy way to lose a little weight, a pill that could do the trick perhaps? a new report says that kpo twisting drugs in combo are helping people lose weight now. our senior medical correspondent elizabeth cohen is here. i'm just doing boot camp but that's the traditional way. there are folks looking at this and saying, okay, could this be like the wonder combo. >> at the end they'll say suzanne is very smart for doing boot camp because it's more successful. it's a combination of topomax, which is a seizure drug and fentermine which is a type of am get mean. it tricks your body into doing one of two things, one, it tricks your body into thinking it's full and, two, it makes food taste bad. chocolate tastes like metal.
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before i give you the statistics, i want to tell you something interesting. a third of the people who took the pill dropped out of the study. that tells you something. either it was. doing well or they had bad side effects. of the ones who stayed in, take a look at these numbers. they started at 227 pounds. they were oh beez when they started out. and they lost on average 18 to 22 pounds. 22 pounds for someone who ways 227 pounds isn't bad but it's not gigantic. >> not significant. is it a drug that's avail snbl. >> it's not on the market and what experts are telling me is it probably won't be on the market. the fda looked at the data sand said, no. they said get us better safety data than this. now, the company can come back with more numbers, but they're going have to come back with
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something really impressive and big in order for the fda to say yes. diet drugs have a history of making people sick. they're going to have to come back with something really good. >> okay. i guess i'll stick with the boot camp. >> stick with the boot camp. i certainly would. new polls show that donald trump is in is a poll id position among the top gop contenders, but it doesn't always lead to winning. [ female announcer ] splenda® no calorie sweetener is sweet...
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olympic track star carl lewis is running again, but this time it's for political office. lewis is a candidate now for a new jersey state senate seat. now, he may have nine olympic gold medals, but lewis knows he'll never have a gold record as in album. ♪ o say can you see and the rocket's red flare ♪ uh-oh. i'll make up for it now. >> ah, learning that the past had come back to trip the track
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star when he runs head first into the rough-and-tumble world of politics. so he can't sing. to presidential politics now. some positive poll numbers for donald trump. paul steinhauser live from the political desk in washington to tell us about the latest on the polls. paul, i guess carl lewis can't sing. that's okay. a lot of these guys can't sing. >> carl luls can't sing. i can't sing either. donald trump, let's talk about him. it was only a month ago that we put out a big poll number that had him at 10%. take a look at these numbers right now. look at donald trump right now. this is among republicans and independents, their choice for the nomination. there's trump at the top, 19%, tied with huckabee. sarah palin at 12%.
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newt gingrich at 1 17 and mitt romney at 11%. pretty much everybody else in single digits. look at this. we asked who would you like to see run for the nomination? well, huckabee. seems like almost everybody wants to see him. only 56% say they'd like to see trump. it's early. they're off an beauty contest, name recognition contest. everybody knows donald trump, of course. finally, why else is he rising in the polls? he's been in the news with regard to questioning where the president was born. >> the early leaders in the
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polls, do they often win the nomination? what's the history with that? >> yeah. not so good. let's go back to the last presidential election. let's go to hillary clinton. she was the senator of new york at the time. we all remember what happened in that marathon battle with birmingham ab which she lost. let's go to the republican side. it doesn't always make a difference, i guess. >> it's anyone's game, hu, paul? >> it's early. >> donald trump, he has emerged as a voice for the so-called birther movement, those people who insist president obama was not born in this country despite evidence that he was. on cnn's ""piers morgan tonight,"" the president's sister takes on the birthers. >> there's this whole, i think, ridiculous debate about whether he was born in america. what do you think about it? >> i think it's unfortunate.
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he was born in hawaii. there is tremendous amount of proof that has already been presented. the then republican governor and head of the department of, you know, health in hawaii even attested to the fact that the birth certificate that they inspected was, in fact, valid. they have newspapers on the day of his bincht i think it's time for people to put that to bed, put it to rest completely and focus on what they can do to help, to build. i love that part of his inaugural speech, that we are measured by the things that we build rather than what we tear down or endeavor to destroy. >> what do you think of donald trump banging on about this every day at the moment? >> well, i think it's a shame. and i think that my brother should definitely be president for a second term, and that's
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really all i have to say about it. >> you can see the entire interview with the president's sister on "piers morgan tonight" at 9:00 eastern on cnn. for the latest you know where to go. we're getting a lot of responses to today's talkback question where we asked who do you think is to blame for today's high gas prices. these are our neighbors putting their lives on the line. and when they rely on a battery, there are firefighters everywhere who trust duracell. and now you can join with duracell to help. just buy specially-marked packs & duracell will make a battery donation to local volunteers. these days don't we all need someone to trust...? duracell. trusted everywhere. -why? -why? -why? [ female announcer ] we all age differently. roc® multi-correxion 4 zone moisturizer
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reminder to vote in today's choose the news. pick the story you'd like to see in the next hour by texting 22360, press one for soaring pump prices, two for police officer and the baby squirrel or, three, to see cnn's richard quest at a school that teaches how to act like a princess, the winning story will air in the next hour. well, it seems that everyone has an opinion on increasing gas prices so it made for a perfect "talk back" question today, our carol costello, i know you're laughing about our "choose the news." >> you got to choose the police officer and the squirrel! >> let's see what the viewers choose. >> okay, okay, we'll get involved in that one. i will get involved in the "talk
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back" question today, who do you think is to blame for high gas prices? this from bill, the average american citizen, our lifestyle is the reason gas prices are so high, we drive everywhere, we speed, we live in neighborhoods that aren't walkable, many aspects of modern american life require a car, we're our own problem. todd said speculators are part of it. oil companies making record profits are another reason. the regulators need to regulate the oil companies. this from will, everybody saying, of course, it's oil company and speculators. it's just mostly wrong, that's like blaming prostitutes for adultery, we did this. this from carla, all to blame the oil companies, they'll keep charging higher prices as long as they can. they're in it to make money. the politicians will keep bickering about it as a way to get elected and therefore they won't change anything. we keep driving what we want and we keep paying. and this from rye, it's my fault, folks, i'm union.
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keep the conversation. i love that one. keep the conversation going. >> i wonder what his fellow union workers think about that. >> he's joking. our viewers have great senses of humor. >> they do. they do. it seems like there's blame to go around. >> we're all a little bit to blame, i think, and that's what most people are saying on facebook. but i'll be back in, again, in about, what, 10 minutes, 15 minutes? >> i want a pledge from you, carol, ride your bike. commute. i want you to make a pledge. >> i would get up at 4:00 a.m. and i would. >> that's tough. >> dangerous, actually. >> all right, thanks, carol. >> sure. >> all right. whether it's baggage fees, long delays, packing, the long wait can cause you money. before you load up for your next trip, i've got a preflight packing demo that you need to pay attention to. host: could switching to geico really save you 15%
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so, that is t way i roll. people just tend to overpack. the end of their trip they're looking at their luggage and they've only worn half of their clothes that they have brought. you cannot take all of this. it will not fit into your quart-size bag that needs to go through security. the smaller bottles are so hard to refill. i'm going to put my shampoo and my conditioner into the ziploc bag and this fits much nicer. it kind of fits around the items
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that are in the bag, and then when i get into the hotel, i just cut a hole in the end and i squeeze it out almost like you would if you were frosting a cake. there you have it. this will last me for about a week. often there isn't enough time to grab something to eat, so i always bring something. what's great in the morning it's an instant oatmeal. it's great. you can pour it into a coffee cup and ask a flight attendant to bring you a hot cup of water. customers often think that they can't ask for more to drink or more to eat. if you ever need more pretzels or you didn't get a lunch, we'd be happy to help out. don't put me in the middle seat. the middle seat's the worst seat. i don't like sitting in the middle seat. most of the flights are pretty full these days, but by all means if it's getting near departure time and you notice there are seats available but before you get up and move, though, there might be other cuss merms thtomers that in tho
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ring your call button and ask a flight attendant and we'd be happy to move you if one is a available. worry about what you can change, weather delays and acts of nature you can't control that. so, it's better to sit back and relax. >> we try. if you simply don't want to fly, not in the mood to fly, always trains, cars, our sandra endo takes a look at other ways to travel. that's tomorrow on our "fix my flight" series. to pick the story you'd like to see in the next hour, check one to check out soaring pump prices, two for cop and squirrel or, three, to go inside a school that teaches you how to be a princess. the winning story's going to air the winning story's going to air in the next hour. -- captions by vitac -- top of the hour, i want to get you up to speed. we'll start with breaking news.
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we've learned that an american is now being held in north korea. our jill dougherty is at the state department learning new details. jill, what can you tell us? >> well, suzanne, at this point there's not really a lot being known other than the state department confirming that this american, identity at this point unknown or at least they're not giving it to us, went into north korea in november, that is what they're confirming, and he is being held. we also know that since the u.s. does not have diplomatic relations with north korea, the swedes are what's called the protecting power, and they are going in. they've actually been able to meet with this man. they've asked for regular visits with him, and also the state department is saying that the u.s. is asking the north koreans to release him on humanitarian grounds. and that really is about what we know at this point. suzanne, you know, there have been americans who have walked over the border and in other ways gotten into north korea. we'll have to see if we can get more information on exactly how
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he got in and why he's being held. >> okay, jill dougherty, thank you for the breaking news. obviously we'll get back to you as soon as you have more details. thank you, jill. a bump in the night draws investigators from the national transportation safety board to newark's jfk airport today, a 380 clipped a commuter plane last night forcing the smaller plane to spin in a whiplash turn. both aircraft had minor damage, but fortunately no one was hurt, just delayed. >> we were just waiting. we were kind of all having a chat and saying it was a bit annoying and suddenly there's this big bang from one side of the plane. i think it was the tail of the big jet hit the back of ours or something. >> the engine hit the tail above and pushed it round and pushed our front end around the other way. gas prices inch closer to the $4 a gallon mark today. aaa says a gallon will cost you an average of $3.77 nationwide.
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gas is already above $4 in four states, including california. >> $4.19 a gallon? that's ridiculous. it's absolutely absurd. >> i have to drive, and they don't pay mileage, so it's really, really sticking me. >> you know, they are getting all the bailouts and the breaks and we're getting squeezed. >> it's l.a., so it's even worse than most places. new york police say that human remains found on a long island beach may be the ninth victim of a serial killer. eight sets of remains have been recovered on another beach just five miles away. a tenth set of remains found monday appear to be human. but that has not been confirmed by the medical examiner. arizona governor jan brewer says the state is considering its legal options on its tough new immigration law. the ninth circuit court of appeals refused to lift a stay that has blocked the law's major
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provisions. the court says immigration is a federal concern. one judge wrote it's an absurdity to think 50 states can have their own foreign policy. well, coming up in the white house east room, this hour, the president and the vice president are helping their wives launch a new program for military families. it's called joining forces, and it's going to be headed by former afghan war commander general stanley mcchrystal. the program educates communities, corporations, nonprofit organizations on ways to support troops and their families. and japan raised the nuclear alert level at the fukushima plant to seven today, that is the maximum. that puts the disaster on the same footing as chernobyl, still, officials are quick to point out that the fukushima plant has released just a tenth of the radiation given off at chernobyl. >> this is more looking back than looking forward and it's saying there's more radiation
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released than they had originally calculated and i think that does -- i think there is a little bit of blame here that they were slow to get out into the field. tension at nato over libya now. the foreign ministers of britain and france publicly complain today that nato is not doing enough to protect civilians in libya. witnesses say that five civilians died in the latest fighting in misrata including two toddlers. rebels have rejected an african cease-fire plan because moammar gadhafi would remain in power. more now on the story hitting us hard, rising gas prices, the average price is $3.79 a gallon, the highest price is in hawaii, $4.44, the lowest is in wyoming at $3.51 a gallon, that is according to aaa. i want to bring in cnn's alison kosik to talk about how the rising gas prices are affecting the economy overall and also your personal bottom line,
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alison, thanks for joining us. tell us, what -- how does this actually impact the country's economy? what does this say about how we're doing economically? >> suzanne, i'll tell you what, these high gas prices are mostly a big drain on the economy. sure, you know, the government earns something from taxes, but taxes only make up about 13% of gas prices. the bigger portion is oil, and we do import most of that. and we all remember, of course, that we are above $100 a barrel on oil right now since february. and the international energy agency says we're already beginning to hurt as far as the global recovery goes because of the higher oil prices. we heard the same thing from the imf, it cut its growth forecast for the u.s., it sees gdp this year at a 2.8% pace, last quarter we grew at a 3.1% pace, 3.1% is mediocre by historical standards. 2.8%, suzanne, would be considered below par, so
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obviously these gas prices will take away the momentum of the economic recovery. >> what about the impact on our individual finances? >> oh, sure. do you know what, every dollar we spend at the pump means we have less money to spend on other things. we'll not go out to eat as much or go to the movies or fix up the house. it will be tougher to pay our bills. we may even rethink the vacations we take, you remember the rise of the stay-cation when gas prices topped $4. we so also see it affect the jobs picture, companies will have less to hire because they're spending more, too, on higher oil and energy prices. corporate america is also dealing with more than just higher oil prices. they've got higher commodity prices as well. here's the kicker. the imf sees oil prices high through next year, so get ready for the gas prices to kind of stick around. we'll just have to get used to them, suzanne. >> we'll try to, alison. it's a little tough there, but we're going to try. thanks. it's your chance to talk
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back on gas prices. no matter where you live, you've seen them go up. carol costello here with today's "talk back" question, you know, i mean, you and i both were lamenting over the fact that it's out of control. >> it is. a lot of people feel it's out of control and there's a lot of fingers being pointed in different directions because, you know, here we go again. politicians blaming other politicians for high gas prices instead of doing something about it, everybody is pointing fingers. in the meantime, you are paying more for gas, again. an average of $3.79 a gallon. on facebook exgovernor and republican vice presidential candidate sarah palin blasted president obama's reluctance on drilling after the bp oil spill saying his war on domestic oil and gas exploration and production has cost us pain at the pump, endangered our already sluggish economic recovery and threatened our national security. palin called mr. obama the $4 president. except they hit $4.11 in july of
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2008 under president bush. but, there's enough blame to go around. skyrocketing oil prices, turmoil in north africa and the middle east and those wall street oil speculators who keep betting up the price of crude. democrats want more controls on those speculators, some of the gas and trucking industry agree, but republicans generally oppose such restrictions. and even though 70% of gas stations say people have been buying less gas in recent weeks, we still love our gas guzzling suvs and pickup trucks. hybrids only account for 3% of the market, according to, and states like texas might raise the speed limit to 85 miles per hour and that is not great for good gas mileage. so, libya, wall street, or is it us? talk back today. who do you think is to blame for high gas prices? write to me at and i'll
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read your answers later this hour. >> all right, thank you, carol, appreciate it. here's what we have on the "rundown" details on 2011 spending plan, lawmakers worked out to avoid a government shutdown. smoke clears, dust settles, on the ivory coast, now the country must decide what to do with its former president. and protecting your smartphone from would-be hackers. and -- >> nasa muput together a set of requirements for museums around the country to respond to. we think we have responded positively. >> competing to land a retiring space shuttle. we're going to tell you who might get to keep one. it must be if you're doing all that overnight shipping. that must cost a fortune. it sure does. well, if it doesn't have to get there overnight, you can save a lot with priority mail flat rate envelopes. one flat rate to any state, just $4.95. that's cool and all... but it ain't my money. i seriously do not care... so, you don't care what anyone says, you want to save this company money! that's exactly what i was saying.
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we do our best to make that work. deal! my money. my choice. my meineke. in today's "choose the news" a bit of variety here, let us know what story you'd like to see later this hour, here are the choices. first you notice that every time you fill the gas tank, prices are soaring. what's going on? next, police officer, baby squirrel, hear what the officer and the kids have to say. and finally, acting like a princess. our richard quest goes to a school that teaches the courtesy, the walk, the royal wave. vote by texting 22360, text one for soaring pump prices, two for cops versus squirrel, and three for princess school. winning story's going to air later this hour. well, the house is now set to vote thursday on the budget deal that kept the federal government from shutting down, and it calls for more than $38
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billion in spending cuts. we're learning more details about what is going and what is actually on the chopping block. our brianna keilar joins us from capitol hill, brianna, we have details. tell us about some of these cuts. what are people going to be feeling? >> reporter: we finally have details, and suzanne, i should tell you, the cuts are spread pretty wide. there are hundreds of programs that will see funding reduction. a lot of agencies and departments cut. the department of transportation, the department of health and human services really seeing some of the deeper cuts. so, let's talk about specifics here. high-speed rail loses about $3 billion in this budget deal that averted a government shutdown on friday. highway construction, $3 billion as well. and then programs to prevent the spread of sexually transmitted diseases lost about $1 billion. and then there's wic, a nutrition assistance for low-income women and children, that lost about $500 million
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which is part of a $1 billion in cuts to social safety net programs. so, who overall was kind of spared in this? the pentagon is seeing an increase overall by about $5 billion in more spending. the department of veteran affairs seeing about $600 million of an increase. this was posted very early this morning, suzanne, at about particular a.m., what we'll see in the coming days we'll see how the votes really shake out, because you have democrats who say no way, these cuts are way too deep, and you have a lot of republicans saying there weren't enough cuts. >> what about the vote that was moved from wednesday to thursday in the house? how does that affect this friday deadline when the funding for the government expires? >> reporter: that's right, so we were thinking that the house would vote on wednesday, but because it took so long to get this bill posted online, part of that was drafting legislation, part of that was crunching unless, we didn't see it go online until 2:00 a.m. today, the republicans as part of the
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pledgen coming out of the election, they said they'll put the bills online for three days and so they're trying to stick to that now, having the vote on thursday instead. it just makes everything a little more uncomfortable, i think, because the senate has has to move and follow suit, we're waiting to see if they would follow on thursday or friday, it gets pretty close. because at this point the short-term deal brokered, suzanne, funding would expire friday night. >> okay, brianna keilar, thank you very much, brianna. focusing now overseas, we're jut getti in just getting word that hosni mubarak was hospitalized, the former dictator is being investigated despite his recent claims of having no overseas bank accounts. well, egyptians insist that his government was corrupt. syrian security forces are accused of blocking wounded protesters from getting medical care. human rights watch says it
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happened in two cities last friday. the group says doctors complained that it was impossible to bring the injured into the hospital because it was surrounded by armed forces. and the west african nation of ivory coast, the internationally recognized president, alassane outtara must focus on reuniting his country. our cnn's dan rivers joins us from the coast there in the ivory coast, the capital, tell us about this. forces had to storm the presidential residence, erest the former president laurent gbagbo in order for his predecessor to take office. what is it like now in ivory coast, one day after this standoff has ended? how are people getting back to normal and getting their government back in place? >> reporter: well, i mean, it's a lot calmer here than it has been over the last week, where there has been terrible sort of
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urban warfare basically here in the main economic city abidjan, now things are tense, but calmer. there is traffic and people moving on the streets. alassane outtara sort of republican forces fanning out through the city, these are former rebels from the north, many of these men, who are now basically trying to impose security on this shattered city, which has been heavily looted and damaged. we've seen just dozens and dozens of buildings that have been burned and smashed and lots of debris, charred bodies on the streets as well. it's not completely safe and secure here yet, and we are still hearing the odd rattle of gunfire, but compared to what this people and city have been through in the last week, this is much, much calmer. and within the last few minutes, we're being told that at an official ceremony at the gulf hotel where president outtara has been holed up for months, the heads of the army and the navy and the air force have
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pledged allegiance to him, so that will be a big boost for his effort to try and calm things down, to bring all of the military forces on to his side. it's just whether the kind of young militia that are out on the streets that have been terrorizing people, whether they will heed the calls for calm. >> let's talk about that, dan, because outtara is not blameless here, there are accusations that there were atrocities committed by forces loyal to him, and that must be tarnishing this moment of victory. how does he bring this country together when people are accu accusing his own forces of committing atrocities as well? >> reporter: well, that's right, yeah, i mean, outtara's forces have been blamed for atrocities themselves. you got to understand this is a patchwork of complex tribal and ethnic dynamics here. i think there's 56 different ethnic groups here. some of that violence was tribal. the -- you know, there was a power vacuum, and, you know, the
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longstanding enmity between the tribes exploded into killing. now, some of that is being attributed to outtara's forces. some of it is being attributed to gbagbo's forces. president outtara himself has denied that, but that's going to be investigated going forward. and the big balancing act for him is to try and unite this complex and divided country, moving forward. >> and, dan, really quickly here, tell us about laurent gbagbo, the ousted leader today, we've heard he was offered a teaching deal in the united states that he rejected and also rejected an offer of immunity from prosecution, is that true? >> reporter: well, that's what we're hearing from an african source and a u.s. diplomatic source, that he was offered a teaching job. he's a trained historian, a teaching job in boston university. boston university itself is denying that, but a spokesman for a republican senator in the u.s. is also saying that the
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senator was approached by the state department urging him to make this offer to gbagbo. he's a friend of gbagbo. he declined, but clearly gbagbo just wasn't interested. he was hunkered down underneath the presidential palace, he was insisting, according to an african source here, he wanted nothing else to stay as president with a power-sharing arrangement, and when his forces started defecting, outtara's guys thought they could move in and get him and they did and he was arrested. but they obviously did a long way to tempt him out. >> okay, our dan simon on ivory coast, appreciate that, dan. finding a new home for "atlantis" and "discovery" and "discovery," who gets to keep a space shuttle. it's the 50th anniversary of the first history in space. can you name the cosmonaut?
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50 years ago today the first human went into space. do you know the name of the cosmonaut? here's the answer. yuri gagarin, he made a 108-minute orbital flight on
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this day in 1961. he received various medals for his voyage including the hero of the soviet union award, russia's highest honor. he died in 1968 when a training jet he was piloting crashed. today the website google is paying tribute to his mission with its unique space-inspired doodle. 30 years after the first shuttle took off, about two dozen places are fighting to land one. after the final mission this year. our john zarella reports on who's in the running and where they could be headed. >> reporter: one wall of the new space gallery is already up at the museum of flight in seattle, it's like hoping if you build it, a space shuttle will come. >> i think confident might be too strong a word. hopeful is probably a better one. nasa put together a set of requirements for museums around the country to respond to. we think that we have responded positively. >> reporter: the seattle museum is one of nearly two dozen
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museums, planetariums and visitors centers across the country looking to land a space shuttle orbiter. in texas home of the johnson space center, members of congress publicly lobbied for their home state. >> there's no community in the world, none in the world, that deserves an orbiter more than houston, texas. >> reporter: the drama mirrored the bidding to host an olympic games, with good reason. if your city gets one, the iconic winged flying machines will generate tens of millions in increased revenues every year. the "intrepid" museum estimates that an orbiter translates to a 30% increase in attendance. >> figure over 300,000 people additional to the "intrepid" to new york city, couple that with the $106 million in economic benefits, we think it's a pretty good deal. >> reporter: a pretty good deal because the price tag for each orbiter is $28.8 million, the
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cost to nasa for cleaning up and making them museum ready. nasa administrator charlie bolden will be coming to the endy space center to make the announcement on where the shuttles will be going, because bolden is coming here to florida, it's believed that the visitor complex right here will be getting one of those shuttles. suzanne? >> thank you, john. well, reaction now from an american in japan. the nuclear disaster threat level there has the same rating as chernobyl now. i'm allergic. doubtful, you love me. hey, you can't take allegra with fruit juice. what? yeah, it's on the label. really? here, there's nothing about juice on the zyrtec® label. what? labels are meant to be read. i'd be lost without you. i knew you weren't allergic to me. [ sneezes ] you know, you can't take allegra with orange juice. both: really? fyi. [ male announcer ] get zyrtec®'s proven allergy relief and love the air®.
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ahead on the "rundown" reaction from an american in japan. the nuclear disaster threat level there has the same rating as chernobyl. plus, reforming medicaid, the plan being considered by some republican governors. and your smartphone, vulnerable to would-be hackers. going to tell you how to lock down your device. well, it was the first immaj that many of us imagined when the nuclear crisis in japan began, chernobyl. the worst disaster at a nuclear power plant ever. well, today, the japanese government is officially confirming what so many of us suspected, that the fukushima nuclear plant crisis ranks just as high as chernobyl. the alert level has been raised from five to seven, the highest level possible. officials now admit that damage to the plant caused by last month's earthquake and tsunami could result in substantial and
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long-term consequences for both health as well as the environment. so, what did chernobyl look like back then? does it give us a picture of what we're dealing with now? >> reporter: it's called the sarcophagus, a massive concrete structure built to contain the worst nuclear power plant disaster the world has ever known. an explosion in ukraine in 1986 showed us just how high the stakes could be in producing nuclear power. >> it is unconscionable in this -- with this tragedy there that they are not coming forth in a new spirit of frankness and openness. >> reporter: the numbers from that disaster are staggering. according to the world health organization, 240,000 cleanup workers received high levels of exposure in their attempts to contain the radioactive debris. 28 of them died that year. and public health experts believe that as many as 4,000 of those exposed to the disaster died later of cancers linked to chernobyl.
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children were also impacted. 5,000 cases of thyroid cancer were diagnosed among ukraine's youngest victims exposed to the leak. in all, nearly 350,000 people were forced to abandon their homes as a radioactive cloud blew over ukraine, belarus and russia, and the invisible damage, the psychological wounds were also astounding. chernobyl led to massive relocations, a shock to the economy and mutations in animal and plant life in the surrounding region. a no-man's land of 36 miles still surrounds the chernobyl site. now, a chilling confession from the japanese government. the nuclear nightmare in japan is now ranked with chernobyl. when scientists talk about cleanup efforts, they don't speak in terms of months or years, but centuries. so, four weeks now into japan's nuclear crisis, it's clear, we're still in the beginning of what will be a very long and
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difficult story. there are some stark differences, however, between the disasters in japan and ukraine. chernobyl was a massive explosion that blew radioactive material into the air, while japan is more of a slow leak. still, the japanese government has already evacuated 85,000 people within 12 to 18 miles of that power plant. well, let's get a personal perspective from near the disaster zone. ryan mcdonald is a cnn i-reporter and a regular guest of us on this show and he joins us via skype from japan's fukushima region. ryan, i know you heard this news about the fukushima nuclear disaster now getting this highest alert ranking possible, a seven rating. did it make your heart skip a beat when you heard it? >> at first it did. i was very worried about it, but then as i researched it more, i found that it's -- nothing has actually changed. it's still stabilizing. there's been no recent
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deterioration. i think it's just a reassessment of current data and they decided that each of the reactors is still a five, but the overall cumulative release of radiation verifies -- washington warrant rating -- >> ryan -- >> first it was very -- >> nope, at first response, your reaction? >> oh, at first, yes, i was very worried. i didn't know exactly what it meant, but now that i've read it a little bit more, i -- it's the same as it was yesterday or the day before to me. it's just a reassessment, i believe. >> ryan, that's what we love about you. you do your research and that's great, because you really have a sense of what's going on here. but you more than us here, you have a sense of what is happening on the ground there. does this make you or anyone else there even more suspicious about the government, the japanese authorities or teppco that you're just getting this information now, that this rating has been increased based on information that they've had for quite some time?
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>> well, i've lived here for nine years, so i know how the japanese government and different systems work. a lot of people have said that they think the japanese government's lying. i truly and honestly don't believe they're lying. they just have a very different culture from american culture, and it makes it quite difficult for me to live here sometimes. i'm looking for facts right up front, and i don't care whose toes get stepped on, i just want to know what the deal is. but the japanese, they're very concerned about the appearance. i think they've the world's third or fourth largest economy, they're very careful about the language that they use when they release press reports. so, it's -- it's -- it's difficult for me sometimes, and this -- i feel like, you know, it's been a month, haven't they known this -- nothing's changed recently. haven't they known this for a while but -- >> and, ryan, you showed us some
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pictures, you recently went to the area where the earthquake struck, and you helped cleaning the debris where the tsunami and earthquake struck, we're looking at those pictures now. can you give us a sense of what that was like just to be there just very recently? >> it was like being in a disaster movie. it was surreal. it went from perfectly normal countryside and then as soon as we lowered, down closer to sea level and hit a certain level, it was post-apocalyptic movie. there was debris everywhere. there were cars. there's a picture of a car in a tree. there's another picture of a car inside the school. the thing that really disturbed me the most was that there's a line. it came up to my chest. i have one picture of me possibly standing by the line, if not you can see it in some of the photos, and it's exactly where the water went. you could see exactly the height of the tsunami, and i was standing there looking in the principal's office or the first grade classroom and thinking
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water was up to here a month ago. this is -- it was very surreal. but at the same time, it was great because we were doing actual, real work. before i was volunteering at a shelter playing with the kids, but this was -- we were cleaning an elementary school so the kids -- i think yesterday they went back to school, and they're able to, you know, start to rebuild their lives. >> well, ryan, we appreciate that we can talk to you and that we can keep up with you and how you're doing as well as the young students that you work with there and the people who have been devastated by that earthquake and tsunami, so, ryan, keep us posted. we always appreciate your reports. thanks, ryan. >> thank you. thank you, suzanne. well, time running out to choose the news. hurry to pick the story that you'd like to see by texting 22360, text one to check out soaring pump prices, text two to watch police officers and a squirrel, and three to see richard quest at a school that
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tomorrow president obama spells out his plan for dealing with the country's deficit. and aides say he's going to address the rising cost of medicare as well as medicaid. a 2012 budget by house republicans calls for cuts in medicaid and for changes in the way that medicaid dollars are doled out.
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our business news correspondent stephanie elam join us from new york. steph, tell us how it will work specifically when it comes to medicaid. >> right, suzanne, let's start off taking a look at medicaid and how it provides health care to 50 million poor and disabled americans. right now the federal government pays about two-thirds of the cost and the states go ahead and pick up the rest. in fiscal 2009 states shelled out about $130 billion on medicaid and received $250 billion from the federal government to cover the rest. but some house republicans, they want to change that formula, and budget chief paul ryan wants the federal government to distribute lump sum to the state instead of matching state spending. states would then be able to spend the medicaid block grants however they want. it's actually an idea that several republican governors support, and here's what mississippi's governor told a congressional committee last month about medicaid -- >> we just want to run it better. we want to run it better for the taxpayer and for our beneficiaries. we can control the costs much,
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much better if -- and if the federal government would give us more flexibility. >> now, governors like haley barbour who you just heard there argue that the current medicaid system just doesn't give states enough freedom to find their own cost savings. on top of that the congressional budget office estimates it could save the federal government $180 billion over the next 10 years, suzanne. >> i guess the critics are coming out pretty strongly against the idea. what are the risks here? >> if you ask opponents they'll say it shifts too much burdens to the states and with the block grants, if the states run out of federal dollars, too bad, they'll have to make up their funds on their own, which is in pretty short supply these days as we know, it could lead some states to cut back on medicaid eligibility or benefits and cut payments to providers and that would likely drive up the number of uninsured, the bottom line is
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that medicaid needs reform and just like social security and medicare, partisanship, may be hard to come by. >> thank you, stephanie, appreciate it. also want to let you know we're keeping our eye on the white house, an event taking place, president obama and the first lady and the vice president, all of them participating in an event to support military families, american military families and their spouses and children, and we will also, as you know, tomorrow be following very closely the president making a statement about his own budget blueprint for 2012, moving forward. perhaps some dramatic changes, reforms, to medicare and medicaid, as well as other cuts. well, you take them everywhere you go, but -- >> the smartphone is really your most personal computer, and it knows where you are, who you talk to, who you -- who's on
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your contact list, and it may even store financial information. >> we're going to tell you how to protect all of your private information. ♪ ♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] with amazing innovation, driven by relentless competition, wireless puts the world at your command. ♪
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downloading apps to your smartphone, some of them are extremely effective, about the you can't trust all of them, our silicon valley correspondent, dan simon, joins
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us to tell us what to look out for. dan? >> i was surprised that the number of apps that are looking into your private data, that have access to your private data, and to learn about things, i consulted with one of the greatest mobile security experts here in silicon valley, and guess what, he's all of 26? >> reporter: kevin is one of the whiz kids who began programming computers when he was 10. now at 26 as mobile devices become as important, if not more so, than pcs he and some friends sensed a business opportunity to help smartphone users protect their data. >> the smartphone is really your most personal computer and it knows where you are, who you talk to, who you -- who's on your contact list, and it may even store financial information. >> reporter: now, if you're like 99% of the people who buy a smartphone and download applications, you have no idea that many of them are taking your private information, but as a user, you're entitled to know. >> it's important as a user you understand who you want to share your data with, what type of
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data you want to share and how it's being used so you can make the appropriate decisions for yourself. >> reporter: his company designed an app for android devices that gives users full transparency of what private information the application is taking. for example, seven apps on this smartphone all considered reputable track location. but the question users should ask themselves is why. >> for example, a mapping application needs to know your location to display your most -- display maps where you are. >> reporter: another ten apps know the mobile phone's i.d. number, the most common reason is to preserve settings if they reinstall an app and to track how much they use the app. finally four applications have access to the contact list, that might make you squeamish, but most app developers use that information to make it easier to share content like photos with people in your address book, still, it's unsettling to some that the app developer would have access to your private contacts. app developers may have
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well-intentioned reasons why they want your private information, the developer should clearly state things in the terms of service, but few customers, of course, actually take the time to read it. >> if you downloaded a legitimate app as a user, you are trusting that developer to treat your data with respect. >> dan, tell us more ways that users can actually protect themselves? >> well, here's the bottom line. you should really think of your iphone or your android device or whatever you're using as a personal computer, you should treat it really the same way, and most of the apps for the android and iphone devices and there are software updates, you want to constantly update your phone, there are security features involved in the updates, so it's a good idea to do that. also only download apps from reputable places, you might hear of techies who jailbreak their phones and get apps on an underground market, that's really a good way to sort of get yourself into trouble. and the third thing is let other people do your homework for you. read the app reviews, that's a great resource to prevent some,
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you know, major privacy breaches and malware that can get on your phone, suzanne. >> all right, our own dan simon, thank you, dan. we're talking gas prices for today's "talk back." we asked you who is to blame for the high prices? sack zachary, said we're all to blame. we have the ability to use less, but i don't think we have the will to do it. our carol costello is back with more. >> reporter: it's time now for the help desk where we get answers to your financial questions, and joining me this hour, donna rosato, and john ulsheimer is director of education at smartcreditcom. the first crquestion is from robert, he said i don't have bills from credit cards, but where do i start? >> he's in a great position to save because he doesn't have
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debt, but what i recommend is starting with emergency savings fund. that's where you really want to put away six months of saving to cover any expenses that you have, things that you're not sure -- if you lose your job or have an unexpected repair come up, it's great if you have the 401(k) on his job, the last place you can get free money for your investing, any contributions can be met. it can be difficult to save, so my advice is make it automatic, like the 401(k) is, try to take the savings out of your paycheck before you hit it, and you'll be much more successful. >> automated savings great advice. brent in missouri says my current job pays in cash. how much can i deposit before those taxes start coming out. john? >> old-fashioned job, pay in cash. he can deposit as much as he wants before taxes start coming out, but that's not a good idea, why? because the irs will penalize you for not making your quarterly estimated tax payments. he needs to go to and
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download 1040-ef, it's a complicated form, but what he'll want to do is set aside a third in every dollar he receives, and that's what he'll pay to the irs every quarter, and the first payment is due april 18th this year. >> and he better do it, because they can come after him. thanks so much guys, if you want a question answered, send us an e-mail at any time. impressive resume. thank you. you know what, tell me, what makes peter, peter ? well, i'm an avid catamaran sailor. i can my own homemade jam, apricot. and i really love my bank's raise your rate cd. i'm sorry, did you say you'd love a pay raise asap ? uh, actually, i said i love my bank's raise your rate cd. you spent 8 days lost at sea ? no, uh...
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seems everyone has an opinion on the increasing gas prices, so it made for a perfect "talk back" question today, our carol costello has all your responses. carol, take it away. >> oh, some were quite funny and some were quite caustic. the "talk back" question today, who do you think is to blame for the high gas prices? lee said oil companies make huge profits because they can drill and get more oil out there, that means left wingers need to back off. this from jim, it's simply the
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speculators who drive up crude prices and politicians who thrive off cozy relationships. easy to figure out, but hard to do anything about. this from michael, the president isn't doing a darn thing about it. i don't think he even cares. i even voted for him. big mistake. oil speculators. there should be some regulations on the bozos, how is it when the oil goes up, prices go up immediately. and when oil goes down it takes weeks before we see it at the pump. and this from nicole, i blame it on what's happening in north africa and the middle east, america we need to invest in clean energy. i'm not talking about nuclear energy, you saw what happened in japan. green energy, it's a way to go. continue the conversation, thank you for your opinions, fun and interesting to read. your choose the news winner up moments away.
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here's the story that you wanted to see. it is affecting all of us, soaring prices at the pumps. our cnn's lisa sylvester takes a look at what's going on. >> reporter: coast to coast from atlanta to new york to los angeles, consumers are getting socked by high gas prices. >> $4.19 a gallon, that's ridiculous. it's absolutely absurd. >> i have to drive, and they don't pay mileage, so it's really, really sticking me. >> you know, they getting all the bailouts and the breaks and we're getting squeezed. >> it's l.a. so it's even worse
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than most places. >> reporter: the national average price for regular gasoline is $3.79, that's up 93 cents since last year. why are oil prices shooting upward now? the fighting in libya is one contributing factor. fears of unrest spreading to other countries in the middle east, including saudi arabia also has markets on edge. and economists say factoring in speculation and an increase in demand from countries like china, higher gas prices hit consumers where it hurts most, discretionary spending. >> consumers really feel the pinch. they're limited in their discretion because they have to pay their mortgage, they have to pay their utilities, so pay higher gas prices, they go out to dinner less, they go to movies less, they buy less clothes. the amount of money most consumers have to live with is less. >> reporter: gas prices are continued to rise through the spring. the spike in prices is not just a pocketbook issue, it's also a political one. >> there's not a lot of evidence


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