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tv   All In With Chris Hayes  MSNBC  May 21, 2015 8:00pm-9:01pm PDT

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show said in the "new york times" today this week if dave were still putting on a velcro suit and jumping on walls, i think it would be foolish. i'm not so sure about that and >> tonight on "all in." >> second degree, depraved heart, murder, second degree neglect assault. second degree intentional assault and gross negligence.
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>> big news from baltimore as a grand jury returns indictment on the six officers involved in the death of freddie gray. then jeb bush defends his position on climate change. >> why do we have to have a debate where people pay have doubts like this are considered neanderthals, that's the arrogance. >> in california, crews are working to clean up a nine-mile oil slick. >> cleanup doesn't occur overnight. it's a long process. >> then the latest on a disturbing murder of a wealthy d.c. family and the hunt for the suspect and on the eve of a truly historic referendum in ireland comes the retraction. a ground breaking study and the power of canvassing to change minds on same-sex marriage. "all in" starts right now. >> good evening. from new york, i'm chris hayes, breaking news tonight out of baltimore, maryland, where maryland mosby, baltimore state attorney announced indictments
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for all six officers allegedly involved in the death of 25-year-old freddie gray. speaking just over a month after freddie gray died in police custody, setting off week of unrest. mosby announced a grand jury has found probable cause to bring charges against all six officers. >> these past two weeks my team has been presenting everyday to a grand jury that just today returned dimes against all six officers. these officers who are presumed innocent until proven guilty are now scheduled to be arraigned on july 2nd. >> charges mosby announced today are different from the ones she announced last month. some charges have been added, some dropped altogether. for example, reckless endangerment charges have been added for all six officers. one of two counts of second degree assault charges were dropped for three of the officer, leaving them with one charge of second degree assault each and false imprisonment charges have been dropped for
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three officers. the most serious charge of second degree depraved heart murder for the driver of the van, however, remains. officers are scheduled to be arraigned in less than two weeks. joining me now civil rights attorney norm siegel. he has been working on police issues for decades. your reaction to the grand jury returning these indictments against the backdrop of other cases in which grand juries did not indict. >> well, it proves the point i mountain that we have been making all long, the prosecutor controls. if the prosecutor wants to get an indictment, there will be an dime. if they don't want an indictment, they won't get indictment. so ferguson and staten island, the commentary on the prosecutor. it's a commentary on the prosecutor in baltimore. we should not have secret grand juries because it's divisive. it taints the process. have a public hearing. let the people see what's going on and then we'll have less divisiveness in america. >> so you are saying, because we saw marilyn mosby on the steps, she says i'm bringing charges, low and behold the going finds
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probable cause. this is not surprising. this is what happens in america's criminal courts every day. prosecutor wants to get a charge out of the going, tail get a charge out of the grand jury. >> the famous saying is you can indict a ham sandwich. what that means the prosecutor wants the indictment, you will get it. i'm glad she reminded the public that the police officers like anyone else have rights and we should remember their presumption of innocence applies to these six officers. so, people, don't think it's over -- the grand jury is not in question of whether there is guilt or innocence. it just means there is enough evidence to go to trial and the presumption of innocence must continue. >> and this is going to be a difficult trial. we had seen the record for criminal conviction of police officers who commit acts in the line of duty is, you know, that's an uphill battle for any prosecutor. >> and what we have to remember, there is going to be motions filed.
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there's going to be motions to dismiss some of these charges, including the murder charge, intent to kill, as opposed to manslaughter or criminal negligent homicide. there with is going to be motions to have her removed because of conflict of interest. i don't think that will succeed. there is going to be a motion to move it out of baltimore. i think that will be defeated as well. but you will see these motions. then there will be a trial. so everyone who is listening across america. don't pre-judge yet. wait for all the facts to come in. everyone is entitled to a fair trial, including these six officers and this is coming from a civil rights person. >> a defense attorney to his last breath, right? >> correct. >> in terms of the way this shakes out in let's say a normal criminal proceeding. let's say you had a charge against six people who had beaten up someone on the street, right? the normal prosecutorial approach is you get all six, right, you throw the book at him and then you hope you roll a few
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of them. that's generally what prosecutors do, particularly if they had a case in which they had six people involved in say beating a man to death, right? >> right. but these cases have huge ripple effect. not only in baltimore but all across america. and i don't like when the prosecutors overcharge. you can make a case here especially with regard to goods and junior, who is the driver. did he that morning and he even if he was doing quote a rough drive, did he intend to kill them? did he show callous deprivation? >> right you are talking about the depraved heart, by far the most serious? >> 30 years. manslaughter or criminal negligence, if the facts all come in, i can understand that. but i think there is an overcharge here and i don't know why they do that because it then creates this tension and divisiveness and just as there was anger in ferguson and staten island, there are people all across america who think this process is now rigged against the cops.
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>> so say that would think that, regardless? i would say why do they do this? what is good for the goose the good for the gander in the sense that prosecutors charge all the time. why should they start overcharging in this particular case? >> because two wrongs don't make a right. the point is, we're trying to create a process that most americans will say is fair. that's why we need a special prosecutor. there's questions, if a special prosecutor is doing this as a posed to a prosecutor, i'd be more comfortable than i am tonight. >> always a pleasure, keep up your good work. on the very same day marilyn mosby announced indictments for the six officers in the alleged death of freddie gray. they reached a milestone, its 100th homicide this year. that puts baltimore homicide over 40% this year with much of the violence coming out of the district where freddie gray died. he told reporters violence is up in the district where much of the unrest took place and cooperation with police is down.
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>> when officers pull up to respond to a call, they have 30 to 50 people surrounding them at any given point in time. you have many citizens with hand-held cameras that they're sticking in the faces of the officers about an inch from the officer's face. >> while there are some numbers which suggest a police slow down which the commissioner denies as they first reported, baltimore police made an average of 625 arrests in the weeks in the seven weeks prior to the arrest. in the past two weeks, they made an average of 328. boehner woods is editor at large for the city paper. i'd first like to get your sense in baltimore around the crimes taking place the shootings, the homicide in the freddie gray unrest and the sense that some people in baltimore there is a link between the unrest, the disorder as it were and the
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spike in crime. >> there definitely is a sense of the police seem to be unnerved in doing less and less willing to interact with people and partly it comes on the interpersonal relationships that come out of the western district. when we were over there in the initial times of the unrest, people had really personal relationships with the officers. when officers were standing in the line in riot gear, individuals would look at them in the eyes and say how does it feel now you can't say anything and i'm able to talk. so there is a lot of wrong tension that's there in the western district for a long time. >> yeah. part of this may just be kind of clustering. we may see the homicide rate slow down. but one thing that really stuck out to me in justin fenton's arrest data is knowing the way at least other big police departments operate, chicago, new york, ones that i covered, it's hard to see you are seeing arrests at 50% of what they were in the seven weeks beforehand. is it plausible that's just
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happenstance? >> it seems really astounding to me. some people are saying the weather has changed. i think the weather can't have anything to do with this. yesterday, there was a march that began right where freddie gray marched over to the fop's office, and there were 48 police officers that i counted guarding the fraternal order of police clubhouse and other cars around that and so there they're certainly out there. some people have made a case a lot of overtime was used during the unrest that there were a lot of, but there were a lot of police out yesterday and they weren't stopping crimes. they were guarding the fraternal order of police. >> what do you think there all means for the city of baltimore in terms of the perceptions in there and outside the city in the wake of freddie gray's death and now the word today about the grand jury returning documents? >> well, people seem to be very happy with mar len mosby. part of the conflict that people
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bring up is that her husband, nick mosby, does represent city council the western district area, but the lack of leadership from the mayor is something you keep hearing over and over. rapper young muse came out with a new song in which he said why is the mayor always ducking us, so it's going from the streets all the way up to commission and senator blake simply not having a handle on this. >> boehner woods, great pleasure. thanks, a lot. >> all right. thank you. >> all right, still ahead, the very latest on a massive manhunt on the way right now after a brutal murders of a wealthy family and their house keeper. the current debate over iraq and a look at how jeb bush is trying to defend his position on climate change. >> and i find this a lot in these debates when people say, well, everybody knows the science is clear. well it's not so clear and there is diversities on these things. particularly as it relates to the influence of man on this
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>> carley fiorina the only woman on her side may be on stage for that first debate. some of her former staff may not feel too sorry for her. judging by a new report on what her campaign looked like the last time she was running for office. quote, 12 of about 30 people who worked on fiorina's failed 2010 california senate campaign, most speaking out for the first time told reuters they would not work for her again. the reason, for more than four years, fiorina who has an estimated net worth of up to $120 million, did not pay them. the fiorina campaign eventually paid the staffers. apparently, that did not soften the complaints. according to reuters, they said, i'd rather go to iraq than work for carley fiorina again, who asked not to be disclosed signing disclosure restrictions
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california remains in a state of emergency tonight as crews work around the clock to clean up after tuesday's massive crude oil spill off the coast of santa barbara. crews have scanned now 7,700 gallons of oil off the coast. it entered the water causing a nine-mile oil slick along the coastline t. spill resulted from a rupture of an underground pipeline tuesday which prompted beachgoers to report a strong odor of oil. by the time officials shut down the pipeline more than 100,000 gallon office oil are estimated to have been released underground with about a fifth of that oil seeping into the ocean. officials said today a number of dead animals have been recovered and others are being nursed back to health. >> cleanup doesn't occur overnight. it's a long process and i ask
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for your patience as we continue our work. we urge the public to stay out of the affected areas that have been closed for the response. >> joining us in santa barbara is nbc news reporter kirk hawkins. what is the latest there? >> reporter: well, the latest numbers have been slightly updated from what you mentioned there, krils. we can tell you workers have collected an estimated 8300 gallons of oil. as you also mentioned, that is nowhere near the close to 100,000 gallons of oil we have been told have been estimated to have spilled in the oaks here. this is an odd around the clock, workers have joined that. governor jerry brown issued that state of mortgages here yesterday. >> that has helped. we have noticed huge effort. hundreds more workers their combing the shore line, using boats, using helicopters, as they tried to clean up all of this oil. initially, we were told this was only going to last about three days. now it looks like it could take weeks or potentially even months. >> you know, i am struck by the
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method by which they appear to be doing this. this always happens every time they have an oil spill. the method seems remarkably low tech. have you rakes and shovels gathering that gunk and dumping into buckets. it's not surprising it will take a while. >> yeah, not surprising at all. i think it sounded as if they were trying to appeal to a lot of the people they were hoping to spend their memorial day weekend here at this campground and another. they were both booked solid. they were trying to appease them in some way. but they're nowhere close to that goal and you can see some environmentalists have criticized them for not using enough booms. they say there is snow way they could have that many resources. so this will be a long drawn out process. >> kirk, the folks in santa barbara in this community. do they realize there isn't an oil pipeline underneath them or is this news to them? >> oh, they very much realize that. back in the 1960s, in 1969, there was a massive oil spill
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here approximately 3 million gallons of oil spilled out into the ocean. so this was really what some credit as the birthplace of the environmental movement. the modern environmental movement. so a lot of times we have been having news conferences, locals and environmentalists have been attending them, asking them questions, pointed questions of not only the state workers here but also company officials. >> all right. kirk hawkins, thank you for that. really appreciate it. on the other side of the country today, presumptive candidate jeb bush was playing defense on climate change for a second straight day as he tried to maintain a very precarious balancing act on the issue. bush was asked yesterday to comment on president obama's speech at the coast guard in connecticut where the president characterized them as settled and called climate change a immediate national security threat. >> first of all, the climate is changing. i don't think the science is clear of what percentage is man made and which percentage is natural. i just don't -- it's convoluted and for the people to say the
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science is decided on this is really arrogant to be honest with you. it's this intellectual arrogance that you can't have a conversation about it even. >> jeb bush used to be the governor of florida, which is already feeling the effects of climate change, though officials don't always like to talk about it there. under the current governor, rick scott, state officials have been banned from uttering the change climate clang in public though his administration denied it. today, jeb bush was pressed on his characterization of people who accept the climb change as intellectually arrogant. >> why do we have to have a debate where people may have doubts about this are considered neanderthals. that's the arrogance. it's the arrogance of saying people who have a different well thought out view that somehow aren't as intelligent or capable. that's what i think in order to forge consensus, you can't have this kind of attitude. >> now the intelligence capable non-neanderthalist, writer for buzz feed news. >> all right. >> yeah.
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it's true. okay. let me get my spill here. this is what is fascinating. you see jeb bush on climate integration, which has been big this week. you got democrats, leaning into issues, climate and immigration. they think these are 55% plus issues, 60% issues. they're on the right side of the ledge. hillary clinton is going to be aggressive, she has hired a dreamer. she has executive action. climb change, the president is really pushing it. i think he has the wind at his back and i can't come up with a single domestic issue for the republicans where they have the same ground. it used to be obamacare. faded into the background. it used to be the deficit, which was a winning political issue for them. it has receded politically as a mathematical fact. taxes are low in a historic sense. what is the republican domestic policy 55, 60% wedge issue in this campaign? >> well, i mean, if you ask republicans, they'll go through
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the standard ones which are taxes, which you are never going to lose votes by calling for lower taxes. >> everyone wants lower taxes. you can just feel in the temperature of the country that is not fair. >> and the economy. so i think this is why you hear republicans talking a lot about foreign policy right now. traditionally, republicans have used national security and foreign policy as a wedge to great effect. right? when the country is nervous or scared about the state of the world, about the national security. about the security of their families, they tend to turn to republicans who are more hawkish. they love the tough talk. they say we will keep you and your family and the country safe. >> that may work. but the republicans face the problem that hillary clinton has a ro bust record on foreign policy, much more robust than much of the republicans and right now, at least, there with isn't the kind of. you have isis. you have all kind of things as always going on around the middle east and the world. you don't have a singular crisis that is defining the elections. >> that's a great answer.
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that's i think the correct answer. i think this some ways if i were a republican, if i were sitting there, the thing i would bang on every day the middle east is on fire, look at these horrible monsters of isis. but it's also remarkable that there isn't a domestic answer to this. >> no. >> sure. in a general sense, republicans they want, you know, less reg lakes, smaller government, all that stuff they have been saying for decades. right? but there is nothing. you know, i have been reading campaign speeches from richard nixon back in 1968 and, man, "law and order." >> crime. >> and he knew that he was pushing and aggressive and the democrats sounded mealy mouth and defensive the same way you hear republicans on immigration and climate change.
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>> you can go to the bush presidency. 2000 t. culture war issues which were republican wedge issues at that time there are little ones like school uniforms, remember that? flag burning amendment. the english as the national language issue. right. those were all issues republicans used microissues but used to great effect signal. none of those issues work for republicans anymore? >> that is exactly right. the biggest symbol is marriage equality, which in 2004 there were ballot initiatives, he was perceived by republicans as a wedge issue in their favor, a 55-plus, 60-plus issue in their favor. it polled that way. now you just hit 60%. it's a wedge issue in the other direction, you saw in the hillary clinton video. she understands it, too. you up domestic policy issues, you look for the place where they aren't on defense. i would be concerned if i were advising a republican candidate on that specifically. >> i thought it was interesting in jeb's answer yesterday and today when he's talking about who he is talking to. i mean, part of the answer on this is of course our economic
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interests wrapped up to energy companies that make it hard for republicans and politicians in general to push back. >> that said, there is also an element of this that's rooted in the religious right and conservative base that is generally skeptical of the scientific community because they see it as hostile to their religious beliefs. jeb bush. we know he knows the scientific consensus. he's a smart guy. i won't speak for him. he's well educated. he knows the 97% of scientists, where they stand on this issue. but he has to still talk to that base that is very skeptical of science and the problem is that whereas 15 years ago even or ten years ago, that was ultimately politically advantageous in a general election. that's not necessarily the case here. >> that's right. you can them. i've watched so many democrats in so many situations give these kind of tentative mealy mouth t. perfect example is hillary clinton on driving license is back in 2008, right. that was someone who knew they were caught and they were caught on the point of a spear of an
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issue that they wanted to avoid. you can tell what a republican is that way and that is what that body language, those answers to jeb bush look like to me. i think it will make eight fascinating election on domestic policy front. of course, the economy could totally tank and all that as well. you never know. thank you. still ahead as jeb bush seems to differentiate himself from his brother on iraq, i'll ask the former terrorism adviser richard clarke about the ongoing defense of the 2003 invasion. at chase, we celebrate small businesses every day through programs like mission main street grants. last years' grant recipients are achieving amazing things. carving a name for myself and creating local jobs. creating more programs for these little bookworms. bringing a taste of louisiana to the world. at chase, we're proud to support our grant recipients and small businesses like yours. so you can take the next big step. sunday dinners at my house... it's a full day for me, and i love it. but when i started having back pain my sister had to come help. i don't like asking for help.
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authorities have released the name of a suspect in the
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horrific quadruple murder of a couple and their ten-year-old son and housekeeper. police identified daron dylon wint as a suspect based on dna on a pizza delivered to the authority's home. authorities believe wint is armed and dangerous and may be in brooklyn, new york. authorities believe wint took a bus to boston and stayed with his girlfriend and left in the early morning hours. wint's girlfriend is not a suspect. following an apparent home invasion on may 13th of the savopoulos family had been bound and threatened overnight, according to authorities the next day after $40,000 in cash was delivered to the home. his wife amy and ten-year-old son philip and housekeeper were killed. at least three of the victims were beaten and stabbed before the house was set on fire according to police. police now say the suspect is a former employee of savopoulos company american iron works. joining me reporter keith alexander.
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the details here are just absolutely horrific. do the police have a kind of working theory of what happened? what the motive could possibly be for this? >> yes, chris the motive from what i'm hearing from my sources was simply, robbery, money. what we found is that as you said earlier, chris, was that the family was able to get $40,000 in cash delivered from the business, from their company and put on the front porch or front steps of the house on that thursday morning. my sources also tell me in addition to that $40,000 that they also tried to get money wired from the victim's bank account, but that never transpired. so they were trying to get more than the $40,000. >> so we have a scenario in which it appears some kind of assailant comes, takes them hostage, extracts ransom from them. has them deliver cash. we also have i think a call to
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one of the housekeepers who was told to stay away, is that correct? >> that is correct. >> that calm came on wednesday to tell the housekeeper not to come in because there was something going on and shelves not needed. what is also very interesting, chris, that police remember at a standstill for almost a week until tuesday afternoon when they got that dna hit off of a piece of crust from a domino's pizza delivered to the house wednesday evening. apparently, the suspect using gloves ate pizza but did not eat the crust and his dna from his saliva was found on the pizza crust. >> that is a pretty remarkable detail. how did they have, obviously, there is not a universal account of dna, right, for all people? someone had to have taken a dna sample of this person before, right?
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>> the suspect has several charges in maryland prince george's county a half hour, 20 minutes away from where the victim's family live. assault charges. he even had a restraining order taken out against him by his own father. he is considered armed and dangerous as you said earlier. he even threatened and attacked a young lady in 2009. so he has multiple charges, some of them actually quite violent. >> keith alexander, thank you for that. up next, as the obama policy, i am joined by the national city council richard clarke. >> all of this stuff that we are seeing today, the rise of isis the disintegration of the state in iraq, the disintegration in syria i think is arguably directly connected to our invasion. we destroyed the state. this is what happens when you destroy the state. ♪
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>> the white house admitted today that isis' capture of two major cities this week are a major setback in the international effort to degrade and destroy the extremist group. >> i would acknowledge that we have seen a setback in ramadi. i think you could accurately characterize the situation in palmyra as a setback. we have experienced progress and setbacks as well. >> it comes on a broader reexamination of the entire iraq wore prompted by jeb bush's inability to state whether the war was a mistake. his eventual mission that it was seemed to signify a new consensus on the issue until weekly standard editor william crystal, that broken clock who somehow manages never to be right published this op ed in usa today arguing quote even with the absence of caches of weapons of mass destruction, the
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mistakes to fail to send if troops at first to provide security in the beginning from the iraqi people. the right to persevere for several years, we were able to bring the war to a reasonably successful conclusion in 2008. i sat down with richard clarke, author of the new novel "pinnacle event." i asked for his remarks. >> we opened pandora's box when we went into iraq. some said that before. not many. and all of this stuff that we are seeing today the rise of isis the disintegration of the state in iraq, the disintegration of the state in syria, i think is arguably directly connected to our invasion. we destroyed the state. this is what happens when you destroy a state. you have chaos. you have the rise of factions, regional and ethnic factions and i think we can look at that decision and say that's the reason that hundreds of thousands, probably a coupleple if you add it all up people have been killed.
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>> you were spikeing earlier about the way we are currently fighting isis. i thought you made a really good point, basically, you have to decide whether this is something we actually want to do or not as in a sort of deep democratic sense. like, are we going to commit to doing this or not? >> right. balls we are kind of doing it half assed. i understand why. a lot of the people that elected him don't want to go into iraq. they elected him to get out of iraq, after all. they were reluctant to go any further than we have. but now we have 3,000 troops there as advisers, we could probably do what we need to do with that number or only slightly more. but there are political decisions to be made. i think the american people on the congress ought to be a part of that. the congress has been asked by
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the president now to make a decision both on the use of force against isis. they've refuelsed to do it. it's incredible. when the congress is not asked as frequently has been the case with a lot of presidents, they bitch and moan they weren't asked. now we have a president that says, okay. i used to be in the senate foreign relations committee. i know i should ask for this. i've asked for this. nothing. >> okay. but i want to press you on this point. i see a lot of the commentary on the u.s. current military activities against isis seem to go along the current line. we're not serious about this. we're not putting in all that we could and if we could, we could defeat them. my question is, of course, can u.s. military defeat isis? of course. can it defeat the taliban? can it defeat saddam's army? yes. then what? you are still left with the then
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what question. >> first it's not clear the american military defeated any of those people. >> that's right. that's the point. >> and i'm not talking about the american military defeating them. what i'd like to see is us equipping the sunnis, who are anti-isis, and giving air cover, to a lot of those people and even to the iran supported militias, which the administration is considering. i look at the number of air sorties, they're very low. reason is we don't have forward air controllers. so where we don't want collateral damage, so we're not bringing in air strikes. >> just to be clear here, you are saying there is a place between the full lindsey graham which is like troops on the ground, actual reinvasion of iraq and what we are doing now, there is room to intensify what the u.s. is doing now with basically the people that are there? >> with the assets that are there. central command, our military command runs that part of the world has actually probably asked for permission to put advisers forward and been
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denied. that's what i'm hearing. >> we helped covertly fund and support the mujahadin in afghanistan. >> that's right. >> they were some of them became the taliban and al qaeda. >> i remember a day when they were sitting in my office. >> yes, exactly. right. if you look at this, the war in iraq which has produced the chaos in iraq and then isis, you know, it's hard to think we keep creating our own enemies. then how do you break that cycle? >> well, i don't know. that's a good question. i don't know the answer. i do know this. we got one now. whether you call it isis or dash as the arabs call it. it's a large capable force. it's probably got 25,000 fighters. it controls cities like mosul with a million people it controlsal large swath of land. more land that dozens of countries have. more people than dozens of countries have and it is going to be a terrorist nation
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sanctuary. it already is where people from around the world go to get trained, get combat experience and then go back home and i think that's a threat to the united states. >> i can never be convinced by anyone whatever actions we take militarily aren't going to produce the next incarnation of the next threat is. >> it could well be. it could well b. but for now we know we got this threat and i think we need to do something about it and it doesn't mean lindsey graham's crazy, who am i suggesting we send thousands of troops. no, no one wants to do that. we tried that. >> that did not work. the smart approach here is intelligenerals-based driven using special forces, using air power and arming the people out there with who are on the other side. we haven't done that. >> former white house terrorism adviser richard clarke. ahead, same-sex marriage, a
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widely cited study on how best to change people's minds on the subject looks like it might have been entirely fabricated. we'll tell you that story next. fire crews responded to a blaze at the family home on may fourteenth and found four people dead inside. they believed it was intentionally set. the suspect is believed to have ties to the family business. we will keep you up to date on this developing story. y. this is called non-24. learn more by calling 844-824-2424. or visit why do we do it? why do we spend every waking moment, thinking about people? why are we so committed to keeping you connected?
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[container door closing] what makes it an nx is what you can get out of it. ♪ introducing the first-ever lexus nx turbo and hybrid. once you go beyond utility there's no going back. i found out my brother was gay when i was nine years of age and i never wanted to be anything other than the way he was. i never thought of it in terms of any unnaturalness or any such thing and i seen my brother go through a lot. i've seen him be at the tail end of the whip of intolerance many times. he went to vancouver, they have been happily married i don't know how many years. it's sad and disappointing and just grossly unfair, i feel. >> actor colin ferrell was
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talking about his home country of ireland, which tomorrow will be the first country in the history of the world to hold a national referendum on marriage equality. a yes vote will amend the constitution to say, quote, marriage may be contracted in accordance to law without two persons as to their sex. the way the yes campaign has reportedly sought to win support for marriage equality has been to use one of the biggest political science studies as a template. that study which was published in the journal of science was called when contact change minds, experiment on transmission of support for gay equality. it appeared to prove that canvassers could persuade people in a matter of minutes to change their minds on same sex marriage. it worked especially when the canvassers themselves were able to make a personal selection. for example, if they were gay. some of the biggest media covered this study. the "new york times" the wall street journal, the washington
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post, the los angeles times the huffington post. bloomberg, this american life devoted an excerpt to it calling changing your mind. it turns out the results of that study were too good to be true. we look at what went wrong and discuss an important question. just how many other studies you hear about in the news are a complete bump. you pay your auto insurance premium every month on the dot. you're like the poster child for paying on time. and then one day you tap the bumper of a station wagon. no big deal... until your insurance company jacks up your rates. you freak out. what good is having insurance if you get punished for using it? hey insurance companies, news flash. nobody's perfect. for drivers with accident forgiveness, liberty mutual won't raise your rates due to your first accident. see car insurance in a whole new light. liberty mutual insurance. i take these out... put in dr. scholl's active series insoles.
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constipated? .yea dulcolax tablets can cause cramps but not phillips. it has magnesium and works more naturally than stimulant laxatives. for gentle cramp free relief of occasional constipation that works! mmm mmm live the regular life. >> joining me now david freeman, and author of "wrong, why experts keep failing us and how to know when not to trust them." good title, dr. mcnuttt, let me start with you, you are editor-in-chief of the "journal" that published this. can you walk me through what happened here? >> yes.
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i certainly can, chris. after we published this paper to much attention, naturally other researchers tried to reproduce this finding. they were particularly interested in the very high response rate of the survey participants, because what happened here was that the researchers got nearly a thousand households to respond to their surveys after three month, after six month, after nine months and they got multiple members of the households to respond to the survey, which was really quite remarkable in a survey designed to get that kind of return rate and they couldn't do it. they couldn't get the response rate. so they went back to the authors and they said, how did you do it? so the second author asked the
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first author, could you please get me the raw files so i can conceive this data for myself and the first author was unable to produce the data at least so far. >> and that other author, a giant in the field of local scientists, in fact, i've read his book. get out the vote. he's done work on effectiveness, voter contact. get out the vote is a bible in political campaigns, anyone watching this, works on campaigns knows that, the other co-author, let me ask you, is this an example of science as the fantastic self correcting machine that science tells us it is or is this sort of a scary exam of getting one over on one of the most prestigious journals that exist? >> well, i wouldn't quite put it that way. science is a wonderful journal.
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i this i the rate of fraud, outright fraud which this appears to be we're not sure yet appears to be very low. however, i really want to disagree one thing dr. mcnutt referred naturally, a distinct minority of studies are ever replicated. we don't know how many studies may actually be fraudulent or grossly wrong in some way, even up to and including fab bricks because nobody tries to replicate them. they just stand on the record as is, so a lot of studies are really wrong. we just don't know about it. >> dr. mcnutt, there seems to be a broader issue david is pointing to here, which is the fact that the incentives of science and the incentives of folks like us who cover, who do news, right, are in some ways exactly option, right? science wants to get predictable
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reliable consensus in which everyone can keep regenerating the same results. what we want in the news is we want man bites dog. we want some outlyer. we want some results that blows your mind. that's why this study got attention because the results were so beautifully crystal clear. it's the kind of thing you can communicate. most good science doesn't necessarily do that. right? >> i agree. actually what is the incentive in science is to prove someone else wrong. you never get any fame or fortune in science by showing that you have proven that someone else was right. i only get advancement by showing that someone else was wrong so if someone else's results were too good to be true, you will, indeed, try to reproduce their results if only to show that they were wrong because that's how you can advance your own career and i think that's, indeed, what
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happened in this case. >> so david, can you walk me through a little service journalism for people watching at home. i think one of the things that ends up happening in the way study results are reported is big splashy reports get reported and we get short of a whiplash. here's a good example. this is coffee. right. studies on coffee. same week, august 2013, mayo clinic said drinking large amounts of coffee will increase your mortality. bad news for people that drink 90 cups a da. duke found four cups reduced the risk of non-alcoholic fatty liver zeechlz you get this kind of thing particularly in the nutrition space all the time. kind of dualing headlines of results. how do we make sense of that? >> and it's very difficult. scientists are very, very good at looking at the big picture. i think science works. i think it works beautifully. the way it works, scientists are trained to look at a vast number of studies. scientists tend to be very skeptical of individual studies.
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the problem is when you get to science journalism and people read in the "new york times," the washington post the "wall street journal," yes, msnbc, because then the emphasis goes on a single study, the latest, greatest study, as was the case here. this was an incredible study. it was a randomized trial. oh my god, how can it be wrong? plus it told us something we wanted to hear. >> that is all the ingredients for a study that really pulls us in as suckers. then what do you know? about two-thirds of top journals, the results don't hold up over time. >> yes, dr. the you give us a sense of what context. how big is the grain of salt we should take an individual study with? >> well, i agree that any individual study needs to be taken with a grain of salt and let me put it this way, science is ultimately built on a solid foundation. we know that science over time
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advances because it's brick by brick and with mortar, we know that we build upon the results of others and that science goes forward. but it's three steps forward, one step back. four steps forward, one step back. any individual asked can get undone, because of that self correcting process in science, it is still a process that takes us to discovery of the laws of nature. >> all right. thank you both for joining us. >> that is all for this evening. the "rachel mad do you" show starts now. >> good evening for you at home for joining us this hour. we have a thick outreach, excuse me, outrage-ometer or ometer. we have a fake one. we will see if it works tonight. here we go. all right.


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