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tv   ABC World News With Diane Sawyer  ABC  August 4, 2011 5:30pm-6:00pm PDT

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this weekend at camp david. >> tonight on "wowod news," market meltdown. stocks plunge. wall street rocked by the sharpest selloff in n most three years, as fears of a new recessssn now grow. tonight, what it means for your 401(k), the money lost in just one day. and is thehe any hope in that jobs report coming tomorrow? crushing heat. 165 million americans trapped in sweltering temperatures. tonight, power plants pushed to the brink. and in one major city, they are firing up an old plant. you respond. abc news, the first network to report from the famine in africa. the only team to take you to mogadishu. and tonight, the unbelievable generosity from all of you. buried alive. a heart-stopping rescue on the beach. and tonight, a warning about the dangers in the sand. and goodnight moons? what we never knew about the moon, and this evening, it will have you seeing double. what's going on?
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and good evening on this thursday night. diane is on assignment. and we begin here with the dizzying drop on wall street. we have not seen a day this bad in three years. ugly from the start, and it just kept getting worse. fueled by new fears about jobs and another recession. by the closing bell, the dow plunged 512 points, down more than 4%. the dow off more than 1300 points in just two weeks. tonight, what this means for your 401(k)s and where is this going with the jobs report coming tomorrow? abc's bianna golodryga leads us off at the new york stock exchange tonight where she has been all day. bianna, good evening. >> reporter: good evening, david. and there is real fear on the street tonight. so much so that the index measuring fear on wall street spiked to its highest level in over a year. why? well, there's overwhelming proof that the economy is weakening and even more alarming, there are few, if any options left, to fix it. it's a mid-summer selloff, as
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wall street and main street are seriously worried about the prospects of another recession. just how worried? in less than two weeks, the market has erased all of its gains for the year. >> tough day on wall street today. >> today's massive selloff on wall street. >> stocks around the world take a major tumble. >> reporter: in total, some $940 billion worth of investor wealth wiped out since july 21st, while the average 401(k) saw a loss of $11,736. since last friday, wall street has been bombarded with a slew of bad news. the first, a surprising slowdown in economic growth for the first half of the year. the economy all but screeching to a halt with virtually no growth in the first quarter and an anemic 1.3% growth in the second. >> the u.s. economy is losing momentum. it shows up in the numbers. investors see those numbers and they think, and i think for good reason, that it's time to moveve to the sidelines. >> reporter: on monday came word
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that manufacturing, a key growth engine for the economy, dropped sharply last month. then, tuesday, consumers spent less for the first time since september of 2009. >> investors now believe there's a real high probability that the economy will go into another recession. >> reporter: meantime, fresh concerns over a spike in summer layoffs has everyone wondering what we'll see in tomorrow's july jobs report. after today's massive selloff, it appears wall street is bracing for the worst. >> i don't think there's any good news. you have to give me a reason to buy stock. >> reporter: economists believe we'll see a jobs report showing anywhere between 50,000 to 85,000 jobs were lost last month. unemployment rate is expected to be at 9.2%. david, the most poignant thing i heard today when i asked a seasoned trader if she was worried about another recession, she said, another recession? the problem i'm hearing from a lot of people is they feel they are still in one right. >> bianna, thank you. i want to bring in mohamed el erian of pimco, who knows about
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this more than anyone. thank you for being here. and i suppose i'll ask the question right off the top here. are we staring at another recession? >> it's a worrisome risk. and it's a risk that's going up with three reasons. first, as we heard, the economy is weakening across the board, david. second, quite a few people have lost trust in washington. and third, let's not forget that europe is having a major debt crisis. >> we are watching europe very closely. and we heard bianna report on the jobs numbers that come out tomorrow. this will determine where the market heads on friday. >> it will, david, and, you know, those monthly numbers go all over the place. but unfortunately, i feel that two things are going to happen in the next three to six months. one, an already excessive unemployment rate is going to go higher. and two, to make things worse, the time that someone's unemployed is probably going to go up. >> all right, some dire predictions tonight. mohamed el erian, we thank you nonetheless. and we turn now to breaking news out of washington this evening. word of a deal tonight that
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could end that controversial shutdown at the faa, at least for now. it is costing a colossal amount of money. you'll remember here, some lawmakers pushed so stop subsidies to small airports across the country, all to save some $16 million a year in taxpayer money. then, they left washington on vacation. the problem is, while trying to save that $16 million, they were actually costing taxpayers $30 million every day in lost tax revenue at airports. fees on tickets held up by the impasse. as the days have gone by, the tally tonight, $390 million lost for u.s. taxpayers. again, to save just $16 million. didn't make sense to us, either, not to mention the 74,000 faa workers and contractors left without jobs. you see jon karl there, he's been asking tough questions, both in person and on the phone and he has answers. he joins us from washington tonight. jon, an agreement? >> reporter: we have an agreement. this is going to be done by the senate tomorrow. they don't all have to come back to do it. it will be done in a matter of seconds, david. those workers should be able to get back to work by monday. >> back to work by monday. and what about the $390 million
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lost in taxpayer revenue? >> reporter: it's gone, never to come back. the congress, the government has lost that. they will now immediately, as soon as the president signs this and you can bet he'll sign it tomorrow, begin to start collecting those fees again. but the $390 million they didn't collect, they'll never get. >> and if they acted so quickly, it seems, because of all this pressure on this, why didn't they take care of this before they went on vacation? >> reporter: well, you know, it was an impasse that just didn't have to happen, because what they ended up doing was exactly what the house did more than two weeks ago, or just about two weeks ago. so, this did not need to happen. but the money is gone and we're going to be back here again, david, on september 16th. this is only a temporary extension and those issues are going to remain dividing the two sides. you can bet we'll be right back where we were in about five weeks from now. >> j j karl and our washington watchdog report. thank you, jon. we turn next here to the relentless heat, shattering records this evening. the death toll now stands at more than 100 lives lost. take a look at this tonight. that massive dome of heat and humidity across 18 states.
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in fact, in dallas, it is the 34th straight day of highs over 100. and tonight, they're so concerned there about power they've now been forced to fire up old plants. abc's ryan owens is there tonight. >> reporter: the brutal texas sun is setting record highs this summer and so are all those power lines baking under it. energy demand is at historic levels. the electrical grid here is under so much stress -- >> that's actually the connection to the grid. >> reporter: companies are bringing old power stations back to life. this one, near dallas, was built in 1970. how hot is it? >> 2,800 degrees. center of the fire ball. >> reporter: and partially retired in the '80s. >> you can see the power lines coming into the grid here. >> reporter: this summer, they've needed it every day for more than a month to keep the lights and the ac on at nearly 200,000 homes. you guys have really shattered some records. >> oh, yeah. we set all-time peak records three days in a row. we've never had that happen before. >> reporter: they're not alone.
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four of the eight largest power grid operators in the u.s. and canada have set all-time records over the last two weeks. that means much higher bills for consumers. some have had to make drastic choices. at this food pantry, they are seeing triple the number of needy they usually do. >> electricity bill, everything is just too much now. we can't afford food. >> reporter: forecasters predict dallas will sweat through at least another week of triple digit temperatures. straining those who rely on power as well as those who provide it. ryan owens, abc news, dallas. >> thank you, ryan, with a picture from texas. and in florida tonight, where they were hoping for some rain from tropical storm emily, without getting crushed, they are now learning they might not get anything at all. and while haiti and the dominican republic got five inches of rain, it was far less than haiti was bracing for. some good news there. now to the major drug debate tonight over one of the most
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commonly used prescription drugs in this country. should the cholesterol-lowering drug lipitor be made available over the counter and how much money would you save if it was? here's abc's sharyn alfonsi. >> reporter: it's the drug in more medicine cabinets than almost any other. lipitor. but this november, generic versions will flood the market, cutting into the $11 billion a year pfizer makes off the drug. so, now pfizer is reportedly looking at a new way to sell lipitor. over the counter. some doctors say making it more accessible could save millions of lives. >> this is probably one of the best ways to reduce the risk of having a heart attack or stroke. and tens of millions of patients could and should be treated but aren't currently. >> reporter: if you're on a statin like lipitor, your doctor probably checks your blood, monitors your liver function, for any problems. so, is it save to take without a doctor's supervision? >> somebody taking lipitor over the counter by themselves, they would have no idea if it was working for them. >> reporter: take too little,
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you may still be at risk for a stroke or heart attack. take too much and you could cases, fatal muscle and there are concerns that if you sell a statin over the counter, people won't take it seriously. >> people won't think it's a real drug and they will just take it sometimes and not other times, you knono my grandma might take an extra hamburger for night that dinner and said, it's okay, i'll take an extra statin. >> reporter: so, the fda will have to decide. it will be a hard sell. other drug companies have tried to get over the counter approval for their statins and have failed many times. >> so many people watching this very closely. and you dug into the numbers about how much do you save when a drug goes generic? >> reporter: generally, it's about 60%. it a significant savings. >> a lot of money. sharyn, thanks. late today, we found a aury in texas found warren jeffs guilt of child sex assault. jeffs, who acted as his own attorney, was convicted on charges involving two young
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girls in his fundamentalist church. his remote compound in texas, as you may remember, was raided three years ago. we turn overseas tonight and to word of a massacre under way this evening. as many as 2,000 may have tied in syria already. more than 100 in just the last 24 hours. so many people there pushing for democracy. and as we know, what happens in syria is so important in any effort for middle east peace. tonight, there are real questions about how far the world will let this brutal crackdown go. abc's christiane amanpour with the pictures coming in tonight. >> reporter: these images posted on youtube and other social media and the reports coming from human rights activists in hama are horrifying. tanks are said to be firing on residential areas. people are being shot at random in streets. activists report more than 200 people have been killed since sunday, when syrian forces launched a ramadan crackdown in hama, the heart of the uprising. syrian president bashar assad is fighting for survival. he ignores worldwide
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condemnation, including, now, for the first time, by the u.n. security council. washington hopes that, and new sanctions, will gradually ratchet up the pressure. >> it's important to bear witness to what the syrian government is doing. the syrian government does not tell the truth. they said there were armed gangs in hama. well, the only weapon i saw was a slingshot. >> reporter: but perhaps the biggest thorn in syria's side right now is the u.s. ambassador robert ford, who last month visited hama to demonstrate u.s. solidarity with the protestors. literally dozens of people have been killed in the last week. i'm personally very nervous about the fate of some of the people i met. i fear that they're either now under arrest or maybe dead. >> reporter: because of meeting with you? >> well, one of the things the government has done, we learned, they literally have gone looking for the people who met me, to pick them up. that's the kind of repression
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we're talking about. >> and christiane amanpour, anchor of "this week,","s here with us. christiane, washington watching this very closely. >> reporter: indeed. they don't quite know what to do about this. this is not a libya situation. they're not going to intervene. they don't have much business with syria. so, they can't just put sanctions on. they don't have the same kind of connections they did with the syrian military like they did with egypt. so they're trying to gather an international coalition to just keep racheting up the pressure. and washington still hasn't called for assad to step down. >> and you point out, it's not another libya. many americans want to know, where we going to have another situation on our hands where we do get involved? >> reporter: it does not look like it. and particularly since libya hasn't worked yet, five months into a no-fly zone and moammar gadhafi is still hunkered down there in a bunker in tripoli and the rebels are raiding against him, seems still to be in a stalemate. if syria does fall and assad does go, it really puts a dent in two big issues for the united states, two bad actors, iran and hezbollah. >> all right, christiane, we'll be watching sunday morning. wewee going to turn now to a cry for help.
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the greatest famine in a generation in africa. as you know, abc news with the first to report from kenya, and this week, the only network to report from mogadishu, somalia. we just returned here to the u.s. saying the famine is worsening and this number. it is estimated 29,000 somali children 5 and under have died in just the last three months. tonight, the overwhelming response from all of you. so many of you have written to us after watching that journey, down part of that 100-mile trek from somalia to kenya. for tens of thousands of families, mothers and their children, so many of them barefoot, carrying their children, fending off bandits and wild animals. there was the mother we found, simply exhausted, sitting under a tree, almost to the refugee camps. the children who so moved us, smiling, as they ran to keep up with us. hello. and there was the mother who gave birth while walking on that journey. >> she delivered on the way coming from somalia.
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>> reporter: and then, mogadishu. you can hear the gun fire. just beyond this wall here. the gun battle in somalia, as african union soldiers fight against an al qaeda group who are getting in the way of so much of that needed aid. that gun fire echoing over the refugee camps sprouting up all over the city. but again, it was the children, holding onto hope. ismail? >> yes. >> reporter: david. >> david. >> reporter: david. emma wrote me on facebook, saying, used your reports on a church class for teens. they're ready to respond. there was the mother, heather, who wrote us, my youngest, extremely inquisitive, is always asking, can we watch "world news" and help the hungry children? and patty, who once worked with doctors without borders telling us, it is great to see their hard work in action. less than a dollar a day for two meals? i will be donating for sure. it's reallllbeen something the response so many of you have had. fact, doctors without borders tells us that viewers of "world
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news" have donated more than $100,000. that's going to pay for 200,000 of the supplement peoples, this is the entire meal right here. they thank you, and so do we. more much more on the entire list to help, it's at and we, of course, will stay on the story here. still ahead here on "world news" tonight, the unseen danger at the beach. the suf date suffocating sand, the dramatic rescue pictures and what every parent should know. we've seen the side-by-side pictures before, the presidents and how they age, but tonight, on president obama's birthday, the science behind that gray. and what we can all learn from it. and what we never knew about the moon. will it change all those bedtime stories forever? [ male announcer ] this is lisa, who tries to stay ahead of her class. morning starts with arthritisisain... that's two pills before the first bell. [ bell rings ] it's time for recess... and more pills. afternoon art starts and so does her knee pain, that's two more pills.
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we have a summer warning tonight on a we h he a summer warning tonight on a seemingly harmless beach past time that can and did go horribly wrong. abc's david wright reporting tonight on the california teen who was left fighting for his life, buried in the sand. >> reporter: in southern california, a dramatic beach rescue. lifeguards and firefighters struggled to save a 17-year-old buried alive, after digging a pit six feet deep. the sand caved in, trapping matt mina for nearly half an hour. >> relax, relax. >> reporter: until, at last, they pulled him out. >> i couldn't tell if anybody heard me screaming "help." >> reporter: a cautionary tale
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for anybody headed to the beach this summer. if you're a parent, you probably tend to breathe a bit easier when your kid's building sand castles, because you figure, the sand has got to be safer than the surf. but it turns out, that might not be the case. >> reporter: even a small beach hole can be dangerous for little kids. the danger from shifting sands, a few minutes is all it takes to suffocate someone. a recent harvard study documented more than 50 cases in the past decade. nearly half of them fatal. >> the number of collapses w greater than that of unprovoked shark attacks. >> reporter: it's such a risk, some commuties are now banning deep beach holes altogether. myrtle beach in south carolina has already done it. los angeles county may soon follow suit. what advice do you have for parents? >> don't let your kids dig holes. >> reporter: the lifeguards busy watching the water are trained to help, but better if they don't have to. apparently this can be quite dangerous. >> really? >> reporter: yeah, there was a kid yesterday who had to be rescued because the hole caved in on him.
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david wright, abc news, santa monica beach. >> somethihi to think about. and when we come back tonight, what we learned about the moon today. and then the science behind the aging president. even the first lady weighing in. the real explanation behind that graying hair. ry ! specialists, lots of doctors, lots of advice... and my hands were full. i couldn't sort thrhrgh it all. with unitedhealthcare, it's different. we have access to great specialists, and our pediatrician gets all the information. everyone works as a team. and i only need to talk to one person about her care. we're more than 78,000 people looking out for 70 million americans. that's health in numbers. unitedhealthcare. you've been stuck in the garage, while my sneezing and my itchy eyes took refuge from the dust in here and the pollen outside. but with 24-hour zyrtec®, i get prescription strength relief
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diane showed you here last night that side-by-side comparison. president obama in his early 40s, and on the right, president obama at 50. today is his birthday, and today, we learned that gray hair, some science to explain why presidents seem to age a little faster than the rest of us. ♪ happy birthday to you >> reporter: the president isn't alone marking a half century. george clooney, eddie murphy, alex p. keaton. that's right, michael j. fox, turning 50. and julia louis-dreyfus, too. and if seems like the president has aged a little faster than those hollywood faces, it's not special effects. researchers say it's the job. and it goes beyond the obvious. first, what they call unrequited stress, or what the experts simply say, not enough friends to confide in to relieve the stress. presidents often feel on their n with the confidential decisions. their closest ally, their spouse, but even they can't relieve the stress.
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the first lady recently told us being first lady is the much easier role. >> and i can watch the hard stuff and go, wow, good luck with that. >> reporter: researchers point to inflammation, known to be a cause of aging for all of us, exacerbated for the president. because unlike all of us, the cortisol levels arar constantly running through the president e's veins. while most of us need it to fight stress, too much of it can be bad. and for the president, it goes with the job. it wears on you. bill clinton before and after. george w. bush before and the after. and, lastly, something president obama can control. smoking. he has taken a step toward quitting, with nicorette. and even with a world of cut-throat politics, one prescription they say for relief? humor. >> which means that by the time i wake up, i'll have an e-mail from aarp. >> probably already arrived. happy birthday, mr. president. when we come back tonight, what we never knew about the moon. mine was earned over the south pacific in 1943.
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but the real story behind the moon we see at night is being rewritten as we speak. many moons ago, more than 4 billion years, the heavens weren't so lonely. and nightfall not so dark. that's if you believe the earth didn't have just one moon -- but two. the tale goes that for tens of millions of years, before anyone was here to see it, a baby moon orbited the earth, following the path of its older sibling. until one day, one it floated into the larger moon's path and then smashed into it, one big slow motion splat. two moons, now one. >> beautiful, just beautiful. >> reporter: since the dawn of the space age, scientists have questioned why the moon has two distinct lunar landscapes. the side that always faces us has flat low lands while the far side has high mountains. but every once in a blue moon, a
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new theory is born. and this one wouldn't just explain why the moon is why it is, but it would tell the story of why it's "goodnight moon" and not "good nignight moons." lynn d linsey davis, abc news, new york. >> something to think about tonight. thank you for watching. "nightline" later here on abc. for diane and all of us here, good night. see you tomorrow. a horrific day on wall street. the worst drop since 2008. >> and more people are heading to the thrift store to go shopping. the surge stores are seeing in this down economy. >> community efforts to rid one neighborhood of prostitution, the bill boards some oakland mothers are using to target johns.
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>> a series of fires sparked near oakley and surprising culprits. >> good evening, everyone. the stock market saw the worst drop today since december, 2008. the dow fell 512 points closing at 11,383, triggered by fears the economy is headed for another recession. the nasdaq closed down 137 points, s and p 500 dropped 60. and abc 7 is live in ts newsroom with reaction from economists. >> and world markets are reacting. it's morning in tokyo and australia is down almost 4% now and analysts are anticipating more pain tomorrow from new york. it was


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