tv The Last Word With Lawrence O Donnell MSNBC March 5, 2015 10:00pm-11:01pm PST
built for business. our genius interview tonight was now it's time for "the last word." the state department is now going through the 55,000 pages of hillary clinton's e-mails that she now says she wants released to the public. and a new poll says the republican front-runners are jeb bush and scott walker. and the 50th anniversary of the march in selma, alabama will be this weekend. ava duvernay, director of "selma" will join me tonight. >> it could impact 2016. >> the controversy surrounding hillary clinton's use of private e-mail while in office. >> the former secretary of state
breaking her silence with a tweet. >> i want the public to see my e-mail. >> i think we have all the ones that are state.gov. >> it's not like the state department didn't get all the clinton e-mails that clinton decided they should get. >> clinton turned over about 55,000 pages of documents. >> i think 55,000 is a pretty big number. >> it is a big number. there are bigger. >> day two of the trial of the boston bombing suspect, dzhokhar tsarnaev. >> six witnesses called by the prosecution wednesday. most victims of the bombing. >> there was no cross-examination by the defense. >> the jury saw footage from a sporting good store, a window shatters, victims flood in. people grab clothes to use as bandages. >> well, here's the deal. we're looking at snow and ice. it is a mess. >> a delta plane skidded off the runway. >> a plane that originated in atlanta.
>> laguardia is going to be seeing very limited operations all day today. >> icing is going to continue to be a concern. >> i wanted to build a snowman. >> can you talk us through the fashion of this snowman. oh, no! >> bad roads and airport delays galore. a new 2016 presidential poll taken before hillary clinton's e-mail controversy shows her in a statistical tie with jeb bush within the margin of error, and with a clear lead over every other potential republican candidate. hillary clinton issued her first and only response to the e-mail controversy last night at 11:30 a.m. and it was short enough to fit in a tweet. a senior state department official tells nbc news it is likely to take several months to
review the 55,000 pages that the state department now has of secretary clinton's e-mail. questions about her e-mails follow the current secretary of state to saudi arabia today. >> the state department has had access to a wide array of secretary clinton's records, including e-mails between her and department officials with the state.gov accounts, as well as cables, as they do for every secretary of state. and last year the department sent a letter to representatives of the former secretaries of state requesting that they submit any records in their possession for proper preservation. in response, secretary clinton provided the department with e-mails that span her time at the state department. i think we have all the ones that are state.gov, which were the ones that were in the purview of the department, but let me check on that when i have
such time to pay attention to such an important attention when i get home. >> he didn't think it's important, and i can understand that. so all the previous secretaries of state, none of them were subject to the 2009 regulation that only hillary clinton was subject to, because she was secretary of state in 2009, which some people following this story seem to have a problem with that. >> the details. >> and that says, that regulation says that the e-mail -- her e-mail has to be preserved in the appropriate agency recordkeeping system. it clearly was not preserved in the state's recordkeeping system, which is why the state department is just now starting to read 55,000 pages of e-mails, which they should have had custody of all along, including the minute they were generated. >> although, and i'm sure mary hearth can process pretty fast,
that doesn't seem like it would take months to go through. e-mails are -- >> you read faster than most of us. >> there are many broader points here. one is, poor john kerry, right? he's in the middle of some high stakes negotiations. for him to be asked about hillary clinton's e-mails is not a problem the state department needs at this particular moment in time. the second is the weirdness for i think all democrats who are in office now being made to answer for hillary clinton's decisions. she didn't consult anyone apparently, not even maybe counsel on this. and the third piece is, i think the server piece to get sort of techie about this. the fact that it was at her home and registered to someone who now has a job in washington, but this was, as the a.p. put it, home brewed, makes it seem that much more dastardly, regardless of whether, you know, jeb bush had his own e-mail account,
those servers were in the statehouse, which maybe added some veneer of legitimacy to this. >> but jeb bush was not under an obama administration regulation. >> right. >> and steve, it was also an obama campaign promise. most transparent government possible. let's listen, if hillary clinton had become the nominee, i'm sure she would have promised the most transparent administration. but let's listen to what she did say about precisely this sort of thing when she was running for president in 2007. >> our constitution is being shredded. we know about the secret wiretaps. we know about the secret military tribunals. the secret white house e-mail accounts. >> so, steve, hillary clinton once thought secret e-mail accounts were a bad idea. >> yeah, when she was running against republicans in the bush administration.
what this grows out of i think was sort of the clinton's achilles heel in the '90s when bill clinton was president and hillary clinton was first lady. it's common for politicians to have not friendly relationships with the press. the clintons went that extra step always, ultradefensive. some would say almost paranoid to the point where they would create problems for themselves. i think back to the '90s and you think of the white water story which led to the monica lewinsky investigation. white water itself, the savings and loan in arkansas, it never amounted to anything. but the way the clintons handled that, for years they brought grief on themselves because of this sort of secrecy, billing records would suddenly emerge, they had been searching for them for years, and they would appear in the white house in 1996. there would be refusal to cooperate. they bring these problems on themselves, and you can see the idea here. it seems clear.
the obama administration has the directive to be the most transparent ever. but that's not how the clintons operate. >> david corn, this is the same news media that went through all that, that steve just mentioned. the billing records, they were hillary clinton's billing records. they were found in the white house where she lives after two years after being subject to subpoenas. i looked this up today, because there's people out there watching the show that remembers this, including everyone working on my show. here's what she said after testifying working to the grand jury about where her billing records were. this is what she said after her testimony. i do not know how the billing records came to be found where they were found. so it's interactions like that -- >> long before the means of "is." what we see here is to those of us old enough to remember,
lawrence -- >> senior. >> is just way too familiar. what happens is the clintons do something wrong, it may not be ten on a scale of one to ten, maybe a three or four. their adversaries basically accuse them of committing a holocaust, and they say we're being attacked. they rally their troops and say look what they're doing, and the thing itself almost disappears in the clinton wars. and so the other side says it's a 13, their side says there's nothing there, and indeed this is important. >> but this was preemptive, too. the e-mails were put on this private server before anyone was even saying anything. >> of course. the controlling nature of this that she wanted to control this, and really, the other questions that come up with her, bad staff work, people who are more combative than they are in terms of telling her how to do things right. >> good staff never would have let this happen.
>> no. >> by good, i mean strong who can say to the secretary, don't do it. it's a mistake. >> i think part of the problem right now, she has not announced her candidacy for president. she has some great staff waiting in the wings. >> the staff she has now, they're out there doing the same clinton playbook that was done by lanny davis, which is just to get out there, deny there's even a problem. say there's no car crash over there and really it ticks off the media. it alienates the media. so if there's any serious issues that come up, more serious issues that come up, they have lost the media already. >> the media tends to be caught between, one, hillary clinton and bill clinton in the past, they get involved in something that's questionable. i'll just call it questionable. worthy of question. in this instance, secretary clinton, why did you do that? if you're allowed one question
to her this week, it would be why. that question has not been allowed to be asked or answered since the start. and in the meantime, since there's no answer to it, there's a certain amount of discussion and speculation about it. and "the new york times" in an editorial calls it disturbing. reasonable. john mccain calls it a crime. that's the problem, is that the dialogue is stuck between crime and then there's disturbing in here, and then there's absolutely nothing to look at, which is the clinton view of it. >> we have forgotten, hillary clinton in the last now seven years basically since the end of the 2008 campaign, she's not been subject to the daily scrutiny she's now becoming subject to. what we're being reminded of is, this is what it was like between 1999 and 2008. so that won't take them long to talk about this. they feel they were victimized by the media in 2008. that the reason hillary clinton is not president today and barack obama is, the media sided with barack obama and side against hillary clinton.
you can debate all the coverage and everything, but what i'm seeing right now is the clintons creating a needlessly, overly adversarial relationship with the press. >> you believe that, i'm not saying it's right, but if that's your assumption, the day she walked into foggy bottom, she knew she would likely run for president in four, eight years. so if you think that's a problem there, you've been defeated in part because of it, what does an adult do? you change your ways to get what you want. >> every politician is doing this. hillary clinton has perhaps been the most flagrant. but this tendency towards secrecy. jeb bush running for president had his own private circumstance. grant it, this is worse apples to apples. but everyone is putting certain conversations off line and certain online. and that is a problem. that's a problem for transparency, democracy and for
the way we deal with our politicians. >> i want to bring in john. tell us what is at stake here and why we should be concerned about this, if at all. >> sure, thanks. i think we're understating the amount of damage that this may have caused for four years for secretary clinton to have designed -- she basically privatized her e-mail. she created a system where she could personally manage who got access to her communications. that's not some abstract recordkeeping concern. there are a lot of specific things, whether it's inspector general investigations, freedom of information act requests or the question about preserving records that are all harmed by the way she chose to manage the records. her tweet is telling, i want to
give access to my records. they're not her records. there's been a law since 1950, that those belong to everyone and there are guidelines how they're supposed to be managed and that's not how it happened in this case. >> john, at the sunlight foundation, you are sitting at the end of several decades of work that has preceded you, starting in the middle of the 20th century and really coming into force after watergate of people saying we need more sunlight in government. we need to be able to have more full disclosure about what's going on there, and this is exactly what you've been working against, and what this movement, which is a liberal movement. every advance we've made in this territory about open records, freedom of information act is a liberal law, put in place by liberals. all of that liberal achievement is being defied by these kinds
of practices. >> i think that's a great point. imagine a cabinet secretary coming in saying i'm going to work out of my own office and hire my own security detail and bring in a private pr team to manage communications. that would never be accepted. but for some reason in terms of e-mail people are getting away with that. it is common scandal, but it's also the case this is far more egregious. so our hope is this political dialogue that comes out of it will take care of itself. we're more concerned about the reforms we need so we don't continue to have more scandals like this one, so we can be confident in what cabinet secretaries are doing. right now this story shows that we have every reason not to be confident. >> john, i know you're a nonpartisan organization, but over the years of studying this, have you noticed one party is better or worse than the other on this issue? >> i don't -- >> i would submit the democrats
are way better in terms of trying to enact things like the freedom of information act, trying to get those regulations in place. but in the day-to-day behavior of living within those regulations and laws, is one side better than the other? >> i think you would have to do a long-term study to see if there's a link with ideology. i would suspect that there isn't. but i would observe that talking points we have now are basically the exact reverse of what we had ten years ago where the rnc e-mail server was set up in the bush white house and democrats were railing against it. now there's a lot of apology coming from the left and concern about the political fall out. >> thanks, john. but they can only see it, david corn, when it's the other party that they feel has crossed the line. >> that is the problem.
you've been making that point the last few days. i find when i did a piece that looked in the very beginning of this, it's not a law, guidelines, it's not a criminal act. but the harshest criticism came from people who usually like what i have to say. we can't get in the middle and say okay, this is something that's questionable, disturbing, needs to be dealt with. partly because of the way the clintons respond. >> we're going to take a break. when we come back, steve has to catch us up on the latest shenanigans in new jersey. and we'll be right back with that. if a denture were to be put under a microscope we can see all the bacteria that still exists. polident's unique micro clean formula works in just 3 minutes, killing 99.99% of odor causing bacteria. for a cleaner, fresher brighter denture every day.
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for polluting wetlands basically. a lot of the other companies ended up complying. exxon has fought this legally for years. the potential fine here you were talking about was close to $8 billion, $9 billion. that's what the thinking was. >> even exxon thinks that's real money. >> let's say a judge says that's excessive and cuts it 50%, you're still talking $4 billion. so what came out, the christie administration was trying to keep it under raps, but there was a settlement for about $250 million, about 3% of what the potential had been. and that money going in part to help patch up the state budget. there's all sorts of outrage here. there's all sorts of controversy. because if you look at contributions to republican governor's association and chris christie, that comes into it, as well.
so it's just another example of a story where they are beginning to push back it on now. just on top of everything else, it is a damning headline. >> why not just pay and give chris christie a private jet ride around the world with his wife? why bother -- it surprises me he's using it for anything. >> in the case people who would object to this would make, if a company is going to be on the hook for $8, $9 billion and they fight this in the courts for years and you come back and say, 3% of that, we'll settle for it, there's no incentive for the next company they decide to go after to cooperate. and not to fight it, drag it out, cost the state a fortune in legals. >> and david, taking in the lower amount is just another burden on the taxpayers of new jersey. >> yeah, someone bore the cost
for this pollution and degradation. $8 billion is the economic number we put on it, but that meant that people ate tainted food, they couldn't fish, they had property values dropped. something happened. yet that money will not be paid. basically christie is giving a $7.75 billion subsidy to exxon for polluting his own state. and this is happening because his own chief counsel got involved in the negotiations instead of just letting the attorney general's office handle it. >> let's just leave it there. as we close, i just want to quote the most famous governmental e-mail of all time, in the short history of governmental e-mails. that was from a yahoo account to a g-mail account, which is why people like editorial writers at "the new york times" are
disturbed by government officials using private e-mail accounts. thank you all for joining me tonight. coming up, we have new details on a plane that veered off the runway at la guardia today. we have video from inside that plane, next. next. ♪♪ expected wait time: 55 minutes. your call is important to us. thank you for your patience. waiter! vo: in the nation, we know how it feels when you aren't treated like a priority. we do things differently. we'll take care of it. vo: we put members first... join the nation. thank you. ♪ nationwide is on your side ♪ ♪ ♪ i love my meta health bars. because when nutritious tastes this delicious i don't miss the other stuff.
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here's the latest. >> reporter: amateur video from inside delta flight 1086, has crew members and firefighters helped passengers escape. >> i just survived a plane crash. >> reporter: the plane, with 132 people on board, careened off the runway, up an embankment, and crashed through a fence. its nose just inches from flushing bay. the first word that the plane was in trouble came from ground crews who radioed the tower. >> reporter: the flight was coming in from atlanta, landing on laguardia's runway 1-3 in snow and icy fog. about 2/3 of the way down the
runway, the plane veered to the left. only that embankment and fence kept it from going into the freezing water. >> reporter: nbc's stephanie gosk talked to alley clark. >> so you were filing people off with little kids on board? >> there were. there were a couple of parents with their kids. everybody took great care of everybody. >> reporter: managers say the runway had been plowed just prior to the accident and only four minutes earlier other pilots reported no difficulty landing. >> approximately 11:05, two planes landed and reported good braking action. >> reporter: but the short runways can be challenging in the best of conditions. >> pilots have to be concerned about getting the airplane down in the first third of the runway. they don't have lot of margin of
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that was the day hundreds of civil rights marchers trying to cross the bridge were attacked and beaten by state police. the oscar nominated film "selma" depicts that event and the two other selma marchers organized by dr. martin luther king, jr. and other civil rights leaders. >> as long as i am unable to exercise my constitutional right to vote, i do not have command of my own life. i can not determine my own destiny, because it's determined for me by people that would rather see me suffer than succeed. those that have gone before us say no more! no more! that means protests. that means march. that means disturb the peace. that means jail. that means risk. we will not wait any longer. give us the vote! >> that's right, no more!
>> we're not asking, we're not demanding, give us the vote! >> we're joined now by ava duvernay, the director of "selma." there's a magic to what you did there. i have seen this film, as you know, at the premiere in new york. i have seen clips of this film. i have seen tv commercials for this film. every time i see any bit of it, even just then, i feel it. it's not something that just flies by the way some tv promos of movies can. in every frame, you've got the connection. >> i'm glad you feel that way. thank you for amplifying what we were trying to do with the film over the course of getting it out to the world. i think the reason why it resonates in some ways, it's based on what was true, just this true resistance. that's what every day we were trying to get after, what does it feel like to resist with your whole body, your whole spirit and whole mind, because that's what it really is. it represents to me a standing
up that was so visceral, that was so vital and that was so very, and what "very" means, very everything. it's an emotional story and that was our goal to capture it. >> did you time the making and release of this movie to be on the eve of the 50th anniversary? >> no, no. this film had been in the works for seven years and had never gotten off the ground. everything just converged at this moment that become a very robust, ripe time. no one knew ferguson, no one knew mike brown, no one knew staten island. no one knew any of this coming. but there wasn't a dove tail to say, we want to commemorate the 50th anniversary. no, it was meant to be. yeah. >> with the 50th anniversary this weekend, i have to feel that you have changed the nature
of the 50th anniversary, because it was going to be only people well over 50 who could have a working memory, and a full understanding and a personal knowledge of what this was. you've now, i believe, expanded that knowledge, that sensation of personal knowledge oh of what this was to all ages. >> i think that's the power of film. it becomes personal, it becomes a part of your chemistry when you see the four little girls at the top of selma. when you watch dr. king give these speeches. it becomes not something that you're distant from, it's something that you watched and felt an emotional reaction to in the theater. so yes, for that, perhaps the film has bridged the gap for some people. i think it's particularly resonant, because there's something now that is making people feel attached to selma, that's ferguson, the civil unrest and the thought about
change and police aggression. so to connect that with this piece of history is creating something very textural, very beautiful that is something no one could have planned and it's happening. and so it deserves to be taken a good look at. >> we did a segment tuesday night on the justice department's report that eric holder released. then on wednesday about what had been going on in ferguson. as was said then by my guest, there was really sadly no news in that report for african-americans, who have known this story for decades and decades, that every form of police abuse described there was something that african-americans have been hearing about at the breakfast table for their lifetimes. >> yeah. and although there weren't any surprises in it, i think there is a validation to the freedom fighters on the ground there in ferguson, because that report would have never been done and
no one would have paid attention to people saying -- >> without marching. >> without those marches. without those young people on the street, without all the people on the street saying what did that really do? well, it did this. that report, although it was not a magic pill for anything, is definitely a validation of, you know, long, long-felt, deeply felt oppression in that community. and mirroring many communities around the country. so there is value to that. and value to the protest politics and just the hope that it really blossoms into a movement. selma was a part of a 13 year long civil rights protest. when you look at all of the incidents and the efforts that led up to something like selma, it was decades in the making. so perhaps we're in the middle or the beginning of a movement that may take some time. but there was something about that report that i think, you know, echoing what we hear from
black people in the community that was extremely valuable. >> did you, in starting this film, i understand how you approach it as a filmmaker and artist, but i'm wonder to what extent you felt somewhere in your head that you would be approach thing as a teacher, you will be teaching people what it was like to be african-american in alabama and try to vote in the 1960s, this stunning scene you show with oprah winfrey trying to register to vote. did you think it was going to be so instructional? >> no, never. as an artist i'm not thinking about teaching, i'm thinking about bearing witness. i was taking what i felt about the situation, what i had researched and heard and just trying to decipher that into some image that might resonate. what that was going to do and teach, instruct, inflame, be criticized, whatever it does is not up to me.
but it was really just trying to add to the record in some way. >> you hadn't done a grand scale film like this before with this all this stuff. >> no, lawrence, i did not. >> was it something that you were in the back of your mind as -- >> the interesting thing is i know so many friends that really aspired to make the $50 million film. for me as a black woman filmmaker, it was just wanting to make another film. so what that was, how big it was is not something i have the luxury or privilege to think about. it's just surviving. >> you do now. >> perhaps. but yeah, just trying to make another one. that was the goal. >> and you're here in new york working on another one. >> i am. >> ava duvernay, thank you very much for honoring us with this visit. >> i'm honored by you. >> thank you. we'll be right back.
msnbc will have full coverage of the events in selma this weekend, including live coverage of president obama's speech. coming up, there is news about harrison ford today. we will bring you that. [alarms blaring] ohhhhh... whoa whoa whoa! who's responsible for this?!? if something goes wrong, you find a scapegoat. ...rick. it's what you do. ahhhhhhhh! what'd you say? uh-oh! kelly! if you want to save fifteen percent or more on car insurance, you switch to geico. it's what you do. rick. don't walk away from me.
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harrison ford was seriously injured in a plane crash today. he was flying his plane and crashed on a golf course in los angeles. he was the only person on board. he was stabilize and take on the ucla medical center. he has lacerations to the head and possible fractures. no word on what caused the crash and the ntsb is sending an investigator. up next, testimony from the trial of the boston bomber that one writer said was pretty tough to listen to. oooo no wonder no one has eaten this sandwich kids discover the world with their mouths keep laundry pacs out of reach and away from children brought to you by tide so i got this listing. 3 bedroom, 3 bath. i have a client that lives out of state. just knew it was for her. so i tried to get her on video chat. i'm on verizon.
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a "boston globe" columnist will join me in a moment. based on the opening statements in court yesterday, here is what he wrote in this morning's "boston globe." four minutes, that's how long dzhokhar tsarnaev stood there next to the kids watching the marathon on the sidewalk outside the forum. four minutes. that's how long he had to consider what the pressure cooker bomb he had in his backpack would do to those children, the richards kids. he had 240 seconds to play in his kid the way the bbs and tiny pieces of metal would be propelled into those kids. the bomb ripped through 8-year-old martin richard like a meteor. it left a gaping hole in his midsection from which all the blood drained from his small body. denise richard's sight was cloudy from the projectile that shattered her eye. bill richard picked up their
daughter, 7-year-old jane, but jane fell down because her leg was no longer attached to her body. this was not a rash act. the children killed and maimed were not collateral damage. they were targeted explicitly. when dzhokhar tsarnaev put that backpack down outside the forum, he had to know he was going to kill and dismember children. joining me now is kevin cullen from "the boston globe." you're in the courtroom today, what was the testimony like? >> it was a moment, lawrence, of transcendent grace. bill richard sat there and
recounted that whole day that his family had. it started as a great family tradition going up to the marathon and ended in unspeakable violence. he recounted this in extraordinary detail, and yet sort of a laser-like focus, never lost focus, stayed on point as the prosecutors had wanted. he did not lose his composure once, and it was extraordinary stuff what he talked about. the whole day today, lawrence, it was about choices. the choices faced by first responders like police officer tommy barrett, police officer lauren woods. they had to run and leave people who were wounded to go to people who were worse wounded. they had to take people dead off backboards and give it to the
living. and bill richards sat there, he looked at his wife, denise, kneeling over their son, martin. when he looked at martin, he said just by the color of him, he said i knew he was gone. and yet he had to run and run to an ambulance and get his daughter jane to the hospital, because he said they couldn't lose jane, too. so to sit there and the jurors had very emotional reaction to that testimony. but i have been if a lot of courtrooms but that was an extraordinary thing today. >> and the way you write about it is like no one else can. i thank you for those reports. the big bombshell yesterday in the opening statement, as you reported in this morning's paper is that the prosecutor revealing that dzhokhar tsarnaev's brother was not killed by the police, it was his brother who killed him
by backing up the car over him. >> yeah, it was one of these things that we sort of suspected, but it just was finally dropped out there and said. so now we know that he was involved in the deaths of five people, including his brother. there's a certain irony about that, that he -- you know, the defense clearly is going to be that this kid idolized his older brother, that he followed his brother into jihad, that the brother was the manipulative one in that relationship, yet we now know that he was dzhokhar who killed his own brother. >> kevin, i can't thank you enough for your reporting from the courtroom. i'm following your tweets and all your writing about it. how long do you expect this trial to go on? >> well, the judge told the jurors to prepare for four
months. i think most people will tell you the last two days was a little more accelerated than we would have thought. so i think it's always hard to judge how long these kind of things are going to take place. one thing that's clear, the defense in this phase of the trial is not objecting. they have not cross examined any witnesses, and they would be very reluctant to cross examine any victims. so this part is going to go i think a little faster than people thought. >> and in the end, this is all about the death penalty. what we're seeing here is someone who is pleading guilty, and having a trial, which is an oddity in itself. and then we'll be in a penalty phase after that. >> yeah. it is unusual for the defense. they haven't formally pled guilty, but as i said, it was him. they admit he did it. and so this is sort of this kind of weird -- we're in what we
could call the guilt phase of a capital case, yet the defense has said he's guilty. and we're going through this evidence and then we know because they admitted to this, we will get to the penalty phase of this. and that will be considerably longer, because the defense will present an awful lot of witnesses and testimony that would suggest a reduced culpability on mitigating circumstances, such as tamerlin being a real influence on his younger brother. i suspect the penalty phase will go much longer. the one thing that will get contentious, lawrence, it will be the why. why did dzhokhar tsarnaev do this? when his defense lawyer got up yesterday, she basically said there's little we dispute. but what they do dispute is when the government says that dzhokhar tsarnaev was, you know,
radicalized himself, that he read jihadi literature. he downloaded things and that he was well radicalized and it wasn't his brother that made him do it. i think that's when it will get contentious. >> kevin, thank you very much for joining us tonight. >> thanks, lawrence. coming up, another episode of msnbc's "seven days of genius." okay, listen up! i'm re-workin' the menu. mayo? corn dogs? you are so outta here! aah! [ female announcer ] the complete balanced nutrition of great-tasting ensure. 24 vitamins and minerals antioxidants and 9 grams of protein. [ bottle ] ensure®. nutrition in charge™. ♪ okay, you ready to go? i gotta go dad! okay! let's go go, go, go... woah! go right, go left, go left stop! now go... (shouting) let's go!! i gotta go! can i go? yup! you can go. (beeping alert) woah! there you go!
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this week is msnbc's "7 days of genius," which brings us to tattoos. especially those that you might come to regret, like those expressing devotion to your high school crush. what would you call a person who has invented a painless process for erasing tattoos? genius? he will join me next. you can call me shallow... but, i have a wandering eye. i mean, come on.
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what is your most regrettable tattoo? for eric, that's easy. he's in the painful process of having the romney campaign symbol removed from his face. but when one of your tats loses relevance or becomes embarrassing, there could now be a painless way to remove them. joining me now is alec falconham, a ph.d. student in halifax. i'm told that you have come up with a cream that you can put on the tattoo and it goes away.
how long does it take? >> so currently we're at the stage where we're working on mouse experiments. so far what we've seen is a couple of applications we're able to remove all the permanent ink. >> so at this point, where you tried the human experiments yet? >> i wish we were at that stage. so right now we're looking at doing paid experiments set to begin next week which we'll be testing our cream on aged tattoos in pigs. >> but so far, everything has been working smoothly? do you have in your head a projection of when you think you might be able to get this to market? >> it's kind of the million dollar question. >> actually, i think it's like a several billion dollar question.
i think you're going to be inundated with potential investors after this segment tonight. >> yeah, i'm already kind of inundated. so the next step is doing these pig experiments, which is the best thing we have for human skin. then we're looking at the regulatory steps how to get this to clinical trials. again, a lot of people have e-mailed me to be guinea pigs. that's the step we'll take after the pig experiments. >> how does this stuff work? >> so to summarize, after you have a tattoo, you get an immune response which these cells come into the skin. those take up that tattoo pigment and some of them take off to lymph nodes. some of them stay in the skin and that creates this permanent tattoo. we've created a cream that penetrates through the skin and
these cells eat up that and accelerating the normal tattoo healing process. >> alec, future billionaire in halifax, this is something as you know the world is waiting for this one. >> thank you very much. >> thank you for joining us. madam secretary, you've got mail. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. let me start with hillary clinton counterattack. she tweeted this just before midnight.