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tv   The Dylan Ratigan Show  MSNBC  April 25, 2011 4:00pm-5:00pm EDT

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package you can name will pick things up. what's on the agenda this afternoon? >> of course, a look at the middle east, a look at china doing an end around and america muddles around in the middle east and the one thing, martin, we thought was a distraction in this country, the pro sports teams are too big to fail and a problem themselves. we look forward to seeing you tomorrow, martin. great work, as always. from across the pond. our show begins right now. well, the big story today, arab spring. i'm not talking about sunshine and flowers. if you haven't heard it before, arab spring is the term for the wave of one's exuberant's uprisings turning to clashes as dictators crack down across the middle east. good monday afternoon to you. sunny day in new york. i'm dylan ratigan. this, of course, the scene today
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in libya. the aftermath of nato air strikes on moammar gadhafi's compound in tripoli. supporters claim it was an attempt on the libyan leader's life. nato said the site was a command post. and from bombs to bloodshed, elsewhere in the region. escalating violence to the east in miss ra to as rebels battle gadhafi's forces for full control of that city. there are reports gadhafi now using foreign fighters against his own people there, easier to get someone from another country to kill your own people than, of course, a fellow countryman. all the latest developments sparking fresh criticism. the u.s. isn't doing enough. >> let's face it. our allies who are wonderful do not have the same assets and capabilities that we do. for example, i would put the ac-130s and the a-10s back into the fight and i would like to have more help of target identification on the ground.
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>> my recommendation to nato and the administration is to cut the head of the snake off. go to tripoli, start bombing gadhafi's inner circle, the compounds, their military headquarters in tripoli. >> meantime, a deadly crackdown now under way in another country. syria. armored vehicles and tanks storming the city as the president looks to put down the uprising in his country. to that end, he's killed at least 300 of his own countrymen in just the past 5 weeks. meanwhile, our president held a meeting today with his national security team on neither subject. his focus, afghanistan and pakistan. though they do say they're drafting possible sanctions against syrian officials but if you enact those it would not take effect immediately. of course, the biggest issue here, aside from western oil interests in libya, when we hear reports of snipers stopping
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medics from helping the wounded in syria. how exactly is the situation there or in yemen or in bahrain any different from the one in libya? and what do today's tale of two dictators tell us about american foreign policy? joining us now ambassador mark ginsburg and along with aaron miller who spent two decades at the state department advising six different secretaries of state on u.s. policy in the middle east. he is now with the wood row wilson international center and a pleasure to see both of you. aaron, why one and then the other? again, i look at this as two dictato dictators, two murderous dictators and two totally different responses from the united states. >> we don't need a doctrine. doctrines get americans in trouble. the fact is libya was easier.
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it's a country with no serious military. it is exposed. going after the syrians with a no-fly zone or trying to insert ground troops is a very costly, messy enterprise so, no. i think there are two different situations. even though you're dealing with two corrupt and extremely despottic leaders, it poses the delimb ma to face not just in response to the arab spring, dylan, but i would describe as the arab winter because these are seasonal changes and they're not going to be terribly happy ones and frankly in libya we're stuck and in syria we have fairly limited options. >> do you agree with that, mark? >> it's very hard ever to disagree with my good friend aaron but let me at least say we went over the cliff into credibility canyon in libya. we never should have gotten involved. it was a french and british
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matter far more than us but we have a hard time figuring out what to do an enif gadhafi survives, no matter what the obama administration does or doesn't do, it's deemed a failure. in syria, again, we can't let the 24/7 news cycle dictate the foreign policy. his father killed 20,000 people in 1982 when he dared rise against it and the world didn't do a thing. here we can do a little bit more but we need to be able to be clear about syria. syria, there's not much left. economic sanctions have already been imposed by the united states, number one. number two, networks are not covering the disturbances and the bloodletting there as much as they should. why? because there's been a conscious decision by arab -- by particularly al jazeera not to do so. we need a greater spotlight. number three, let's not buy into the argument of the assad regime
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if the dynasty goes somehow or another the country will blow up in sectarian strife. i have testified before congress on syria. i do not buy the argument that syria will implode from within. >> is it too simplistic, aaron, to say it's hypocritical in many ways and the conflicts and you can't have a doctrine but maybe you have a doctrine that goes a little something like this. if the dictator has oil and is your friend, he is your friend. if the dictator has oil and is not your friend moammar gadhafi he is your enemy and if the dictator doesn't have oil, it is not your problem. is that too simplistic? >> i think in a way it would lead your viewers to believe the reason we have involved ourselves in libya is as a consequence of less than 2% of the international system's petroleum trade. 1.5 million, 2 pl barrels a day, that's not why we're in libya.
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we have in libya because the president of the united states faced what was almost certainly some sort of humanitarian crisis. was it kosovo? rwanda? who knows. he acted. in acting he was forced to create coalitions, get a u.n. security council resolution and constrained american actions. the fact is this. if the president deemed that the removal of the colonel of q is in the vital interest of the united states then he ought to basically remove him and we have the capacity to do that but clearly what we would have to do in order to get rid of gadhafi would violate all of the constraints of the coalition partners and basically have us owning the country. we already own afghanistan and iraq to a degree that's cost us billions and thousands of american lives and injuries. we don't need to own another arab country. >> but on the energy front may
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not be relevant to us, i agree to you, oil from libya to america is limited but isn't that the reason that the french and british were so vocal? while it's of limited relevance to us it is for france, 16% 0 of their oil from libya. spain, 13%. italy, 22%. to your point, mark, those are the people that were supposed to be leading this coalition. is that misguided, aaron? >> i don't think it's misided, dylan. i just think that, again, in terms of european intervention, yes, it's fear of immigration, they're closer to north africa than we are and also sarkozy with a view of france's importance of leading and no question if you look for a single individual available for our libyan policy, other than the president, it's sarkozy who pushed real hard to get the
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united states involved this. >> let's talk about the news of the day for a second, mark. did we try to kill moammar gadhafi today with the strike? >> well, actually, it's hard to tell because apparently these were norwegian planes that committed the bombing run and looks like it's a stealing the page out of reagan's play book after the gadhafi effort to bomb the disco in 1986 where we did apparently come close enough to taking him out and took out, i believe, one of his daughters and it is quite clear also that someone at least in the pentagon or in the white house has decided that while we're going to at least issue the per tension we are not directly involved in the bombing campaign this is coordinated enough we've decided we can't help the rebels enough from the air so we try to do what lindsay graham and others suggest which is at least scare the daylights out of the gadhafi regime and break the
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cohesion around it. >> aaron, i want to wrap up with something you mentioned to one of our producers earlier today which is the definition of victory for america in the middle east in the 21st century and to paraphrase, you said the definition of victory is to be able to leave. >> well, we're fighting three wars, dylan. iraq, afghanistan and libya where the standard for victory is not how can we win because we can't win. the standard for victory is how do we extricate ourselves? how do we leave? that in effect for a superpower is a terrible position to be in but welcome, dylan and marc mark knows as well as i do. welcome to the wars of the 21st century. >> if the definition is to leave can we leave tonight, mark? >> from libya? >> anywhere, all of it. >> well, listen. listen, i'm in favor of pulling out of afghanistan. i'm in favor of us getting -- not involving ourselves in libya. we have far greater stake in the success of the egyptian
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revolution than lib why's downfall. if the economy of the egypt imploeds and the organizations are able to overcome the secular democrats in the rush to provide economic prosperity to the country, you can be certain, dylan, we'll be very sorry to take the eyes off the ball and focus on lib why. >> a pleasure to have both of you. thank you. aaron and marc. as we take a momentary break here, we ask the question -- is there any difference between a typical mideast dictator and a typical gitmo detainee? what we can learn from the latest out of wikileaks. also ahead, pro sports teams in america apparently too big to play now. the nfl locked out. the nba on the brink. major league baseball moving to rescue. a couple of crumbling franchises. whatever happened to for the
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love of the game? meanwhile, as we fight terrorists and giant banks, even pro athletes, our friends are china are off to the economic races. an end around, if you will. is the age of america over? a conversation with a mega panel after this. make a wish! oh. ooh. happy birthday todd. it's for a cough... from allergies... [ male announcer ] halls relieves coughs and sore throats due to allergies too. now you know.
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all right. little mega panel time. it is a monday. sam sadder, matt louis. and christa freeland. a pleasure to see you the three of you. let's talk about these -- the gitmo for a second. another wikileaks dump talking
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about who visited who. foreign intelligence officials. saudi officials coming to visit detainees. the thing that struck me when we were sort of sifting through this this afternoon at the same time obviously talking about assad and gadhafi and all the other people we were just talking about at the beginning of the show is, is there actually a difference between the people that we have at gitmo and the people running the countries in the middle east? matt louewis? >> i think so. we're down to about 172 detainees. 42 we let go were terrorists or insurgents again and a lot of people we're holding currently are yemenis and we would run except for the instability. you have the worst of the worst and that's a -- these are pretty bad mofos. >> how are they any worse than gadhafi or assad? >> frankly, i would disagree with that characterization. i think one of the things the documents show is that we barely know anything about these
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people. i mean, we held a guy -- >> the terrorists or detainees? >> detainees. >> it seems like the most information we are getting from each other. >> exactly. >> right? >> what do you mean? >> no. one of the thing that is's come out from this data dump is one of the biggest sources of information about these guys is what the guy in the cell next door says. >> right. they have cells in guys trying to trade information for their freedom. >> oh, yeah. i recognized him. i saw sam, i know that sam is -- >> so basically, i go to the -- whoever, the guy running the prison and i say, you know, sam, yeah -- >> i just noticed. i just noticed now. >> one of the things we know and this it doesn't paint america in a great light here is that 42 of the detainees released went out an committed acts of terrorism or part of a you are sen general sy. so essentially, i mean, that's not really a great defense of what we're doing. >> first off, i'd like to see
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how that's defined. there's a story one of the guys is now one of the rebels in libya we're supporting. >> supporting, right, exactly. >> we have guys in there held for nine years and after nine years we aren't sure of their identity. it shows that we have created an extra judicial sort of black hole -- where we know nothing about these people and what we are doing is destroying the principles that this country was founded on. >> what i like about this whole wikileaks thing and opposed to it as you know. here's something very good about it. guessing the people cheering on wikileaks are truthers. this really blows -- you can't really -- >> truthers? >> you can't be a 9/11 truther, right, think it's an inside job and also read these wikileaks and obvious -- >> truther like your answer to birther? >> yeah. >> the 9/11, who believes 9/11 was an inside job. >> there aren't that many. >> look. >> can i -- >> one at a time.
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>> i would like maybe in conclusion to connect this to one of your favorite obsessions, dylan. the budget debate. what i thought of was talking about the budget which is surely an issue, why aren't we talking about american prisons and the whole, you know, american gulag and this is a moment for right and left to come together and say, we are spending so much money on jails, we're clearly not getting it right outcome. >> i was going to say -- >> that's what we should do. >> the marijuana and the bill in half right out of the gate. >> i won't be a proponent of it. >> i am. why would you not do it? >> no, no, no. look. i just think that -- my dad was a correctional officer so i mean, this is near and dear to me. and so, look. it's ridiculous. a lot of people that are in jail sucking up taxpayer dollars and then become part of the system making it worse. >> not better. >> i like it very much. >> no label. >> save money.
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>> no question about it. i'm definitely anti-incarceration. anyway. you have seen the numbers. while we talk about the middle east, while we talk about gitmo, while we talk about prison, while we do all these things, our friends in china continue their unrelenting march towards greater economic strength, greater economic potency and quite honestly a lot of american corporations and special interests are helping them down that path because they're making money as that happens. to that end, the imf coming out today saying by the time we get to april 2016 china will overtake america in terms of overall economic strength. now, surely some of those numbers can be debated and people say maybe not that soon or late. you cannot deny the fact that while rome burns sort to speak, while we play in the middle east and do these things, there are other countries not just china, brazil, india and other who is are very focused, who are very solution driven. who are very resolved to take
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what they see as their rightful position, sam, and basically leapfrog the united states. >> well, aside from the fact that china may have a little more control over their economy than we do here, the bottom line is they're not saddled with the obligation of having over 750 bases around the world and having an empire in a defense budget that is twice the size of theirs. and b, frankly, you know, at the end of the day, to me the issue is do we have economic prosperity for as many people possible in this country? we have seen over the past 30 years stagnant wages. seen to the extent that the economy is measured it is how well are the top doing? >> my question, because we can debate this 50 ways. the real question is, i think we see the problem and attribute it to different factors and weight things differently is what, matt, is the political wake-up call to focus not all of the things we can fight over but to focus us on the few things we
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can agree on and get after it as opposed to being in this fragmented universe of madness. >> well, look -- >> what's the wake-up call? >> i hope this is a wake-up call to address the budget but i do want to say the way this is portrayed, even if you buy the numberser portrayed that the era of america is over. i think that is very -- >> truly super lative. >> let me explain a few things. i believe in freedom and not just because i like to be free but creativity and entrepreneurship and ideas and immigration, folks who come here -- china doesn't have that. communism can't compete on ideas and the other thing, frankly, this ticking time bomb in china has to do with demographics. the one child per family rule is going to mean that they're going to have -- in 20 or 30 years, 1 young person supporting 4 or 5 adults. >> so china has boogieman or
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stalking horse for the united states sort of muddling around at some point if it's not china, it will be brazil. if not brazil, it will be india. what's the call that will get not -- forget the politicians. the american people and the american political factions to line up and force the politicians to actually knock it off, sort to speak? >> so, i want to endorse what matt said. >> thank you. >> china data. >> a first, a first. >> no. it is important. like i hear from american business men and that chinese aauthoritarianism, we want to do a deal. they don't worry about, you know, they can just wipe out villages for the road to my factory isn't that terrific. it is important to remember communism didn't work, the soviet union fell apart. chinese communism has a lot of great internal strains and i don't think, you know, the global economy could be win-win. right? people rising out of the poverty
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could be a good thing but where -- or is a good thing and where i think there is a real wake-up call and something really important for all americans to think about is without a doubt right now the leadership of china is more focused on making the chinese economy work for the whole country than american democracy. >> yes. >> and i think, you know, i'm not in any way endorsing authoritarianism. >> as a method, the benefit of all versus a benefit of a few is value system. you can achieve that value system through a variety of methods. you are saying authoritarianism -- >> there needs to be discussion about jobs, jobs, jobs and how the middle class is ding. >> nobody -- your average person on the street doesn't care we are number two in gdp to china. >> they don't? >> they care if they have a job, the ability to provide for their kids and health care. that's what they care about.
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the wake-up call isn't the standing in terms of a -- >> it's how is it to live here? >> right, exactly. >> china could beat us in gdp and average person in china make a quarter of what we make because of the population is so much huger. >> china is still a poor country but america is relatively speaking not doing so great and especially if you're in the middle class. >> we have an unfairness going on in terms of this -- our politicians are bought and make decisions based on who's paying them. we can all agree on that. let's take a break. the middle east and national security here at home as we talk about all of these things come back to the pumps, speaking of the middle class to gas prices. can president obama win a second term if we keep heading down the road we are on at the pump? our specialist today, one of the best number crunchers we know, nate silver, our specialist right after this. ♪ got brass in pocket...
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all right. we talked at length about the middle east and national policy. the gasoline price speeding toward the highest price ever. politically speaking here in our own country, will a failure to address soaring energy prices drive the president's re-election hopes off a cliff? our specialist today, political analyst nate silver, number cruncher for "the new york times" and website he founded of a little while ago now 538.com. how do energy prices and the presidential prospects corelate and does one presidency apply equally to the next president? i. >> think we have to look at this in terms of the bigger picture. the correlation of re-election numbers are not that strong but
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to the extent that the economy is important and this puts a dent in consumer confidence, it causes inflation both directly and indirectly, and also creates uncertainty. if we all knew what oil would be priced at in 18 months we could make a lot of adjustments to it but the fact you have the instability in the middle east, you could have shocks occurring with something in saudi arabia and then talking about $5.25 or go down as it has after the run-up in prices in 2008. uncertainty makes it hard for businesses and consumers to make adaptations and adjustments and that i think more than the high prices per se are why it's scary for obama. >> is it any scarier for obama than anybody else? in other words, because of the real risk is uncertainty or volatility opposed to the trend, is obama anymore vulnerable than any other political candidate? >> the fact he is in power and literature to say that voters hold him accountable for the
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economy and gas prices are visible. best buy doesn't have signs on the highway advertising the price of a dell laptop. it's something that voters see since they have a mixed idea about how robust the recovery is to begin with and dampens the mood really. if you look at the right versus wrong track number, the wrong track number keeps going up and people i think are just a little frustrated that things haven't happened more quickly and these are all risk factors. the stock market could decline and hurt obama. when people aren't confident about the recovery they look for negatives instead of positives. people will accentuate the negative and maybe they have the right to do so. >> nate, as the favorite number cruncher, is there a single economic number to be looking at that correlates most closely with the second-term presidents do? if not gas price, unemployment number, gdp growth?
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is it stock prices? what is it? >> the number of people in prison? >> the one number that economists found has the biggest correlation is personal income, disposable income to account for how much money you have to spend and decisions consumer haves to make. research says that that's where the bottom line is, how much money do people have personally, unemployed that hurts that number a lot. if you have growth in wages and offset potentially some unemployment but that's probably the biggest number to pay attention to. >> going up or a trend or is it just what the raw number is? >> it's more the trend over the entire four years of a president's term. people look mostly at what happened lately and obama's going to get some blame. the kind of political science models for the economy slow to recover in '09 and 2010. you know, so it's kind of digging himself out from a little bit of a hole, potentially more growth over the next two years but this is not an easy re-election for him.
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i think he's helped very much by the fact you have what might be really a weak gop feel and you have a problem the next set of candidates but people, you know, kind of think he has this in the bag. incup be incumbents usually win but people are concerned about the economy and the wrong track number at 75% where it is right now. >> nate, i'm curious. if this is seen in the context of the overall economic problems in this country, how much does the idea that you get the blinking light every time you pull up at the gas station, how much is that affect like the austerity talk? i wonder at a time when people start to feel a pinch and feeling it maybe more explicitly at the gas pump and feel up every day or twice a week or something, if that begins to affect the whole austerity argument and people are starting to wonder when's going to start taking care of us at a time when, you know, we are giving
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tax cuts to millionaires, et cetera. >> i think it tests people's patience with everything, pretty much. one thing about the budget debate didn't argue energy. we would be better off to fix now and parallels in terms of, hey, if you were to have a carbon tax to raise rates that way. people thinking about a lot of it. the fact that neither obama or the republicans seem willing to engage really energy issues at all -- >> i'm sorry to interrupt but do you think people make that one to one connection? do you think when people go to the gas pump they're thinking, there's nobody talking about a long-term energy policy opposed to they're talking about cutting, you know, taking away my health care or talking about making, you know, not working on creating jobs? >> it's probably not a one to one connection but i think it makes people more pessimistic
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aaffects how they hear other types of arguments. for example, the affect of the economy bad is part of the reason why democrats think that obama's been ineffective -- didn't like the health care bill, for example. it lowers morale and no. we shouldn't assume that voters think like columnists and washington, d.c. do and make the neat one to one connections but the fact of people thinking the country's heading in the wrong direction still after two years with obama in charge and he promised change, that makes things more difficult and has a lot of subtle effects to come through in indirect kind of ways and people are doubtful about these foreign policy interventions in libya right now. you know? probably not a one to one connection and might make people more skeptical of the policy to the middle east in general and toward energy rich states and handle the kind of big issues. >> nate, i'm going to ask you something off topic. apparently haley barbour decided not run for the republican nomination. any sense in terms of the
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numbers to shake out? is there any impact? >> i think there's not too much impact. he was having trouble getting 1% or 2% in the polls. maybe he would make a little bit of a dent in the south. i think, you know, the guy with a pretty clear path to the nomination is mike huckabee. you have a lack of southern candidates in this field relative to normal. he's as much of a front-runner as anyone looking at the polls right now. along with romney and maybe with trump i suppose going by the numbers but, you know, i don't know why huckabee wouldn't want to make a run here. he polls reasonably well against barack obama. better than anyone than emergency room and as much support as any other candidate. i thought barbour was a bit over baited and would play into stereotypes that swing voters might have about republicans with a fairly large, older white guy from the south with history
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of saying racially insensitive things, a lobbyist. that's not the image for a new generation of candidates and i think for that reason not likely to make that much of an impact and had been overrated, i think. >> did you call him an old, fat racist? >> i didn't. i think brand is important. >> and he called himself a big fat redneck. >> you said that. >> i said it. i said it. i said it. >> okay. his image was not, you know, of the modern republican to project. right? he's easy to kind of tar and fet we are an impressionistic view of this is not the guy to lead the party out of the wilderness, i suppose. >> it's a pleasure. dr. silver, nate silver. matt, sam, chrystia, thank you for making the mega panel mega. the fruit that makes you fat. ♪
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time for something to make you say hmm. a new survey about the sweet tooth boils down an age-old question. when's in a name? the study included two groups. dieters and nondieters. each given jelly bellies to eat while watching a movie. each group was given different descriptions of what it was they were eating. the group that was told they were eating candy chews ate 25% fewer than their counterparts who were told they were eating fruit chews. again, both were eating the exact same thing. jelly bellies at the end of the day. on the bright side, at least judging by the findings, dieters trying to eat less candy and nondieters were trying to eat more fruit. still, the results show how marketers use the healthy-sounding buzz words to get you and me to buy more of their product and in turn eat more calories whether good for
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you or not. which is why i, by the way, ate only healthy, organic, low sugar peeps this weekend. still ahead, have professional sports teams become america's too big to fail institutions? we're america's natural gas. and here's what we did today in homes all across america: we created the electricity that powered the alarm clocks and brewed the coffee. we heated the bathwater and gave kelly a cleaner ride to school. cooked the cube steaks and steamed the veggies. entertained dad, and mom, and a neighbor or two. kept watch on the house when they slept. and tomorrow we could do even more. we're cleaner, domestic, abundant and ready now. we're america's natural gas. the smarter power today. learn more at anga.us.
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with all the bad news flying around, we're supposed to be right in the middle of sports fan nirvana no matter what's going on in the middle east? playoffs are heating up. the nfl draft is this week and baseball just started. and yet, conversations from the bars to the talk shows are dominated by what isn't going to happen as opposed to what is. the nfl locked out. the nba apparently about to be locked out. major league baseball scrambling to save one of the most beloved franchises. it seems regardless of the sport, the box score remains the same. owners are winning and fans are losing. really? is our one break from the trillion-dollar problems that plague us now a problem of itself? joining us, author of "bad
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sports" dave zirin. are the same greedy bastards that got us into the banking and health care sich wigs and the energy situation now screwing up, you know, football and baseball and basketball, dave? >> short answer, yes. short answer, we are talking about the fact that sports aren't sports anymore. our teams are highly leveraged real estate development projects and with all things of real estate, it's taken a major hit an owners trying to restore profitability and doing it on the backs of fans and players. that's what's at the root of all these different cry ceaises at end of the day and los angeles where the owner couldn't make payroll and the team seized by major league baseball and deemed too big to fail. not that sports are a reflection of the u.s. economy tharks are the u.s. economy. >> so, again, if we look at some
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of these other problems, it would require some major restructuring, for instance, in american banking or american health care or american health care to get us out of the mess we're in. are there apparent solutions for the sports problems? >> there's a solution staring us right in the face but it's a solution that the various commissioners from bud selig to david stern to roger goodell are too myopic to see or too much in the pockets of the owners they represent to see and that's what i would argue is the green bay solution. if an owner cannot fulfill their requirements to their community, why not open the door to fans to buy shares in the team? the green bay packers are owned by 112,000 shareholders. why can't the los angeles dodgers be owned by los angeles dodger fans? it would restore the connection that's ruptured in los angeles between the people and the team itself. and another thing it would do, in green bay, 60% of all
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concessions go to local charities. i was in los angeles, they're firing art teachers, letting go physical education teachers. the money, there's applicable use for it right now in the fraying if not destroyed social safety net for the working and middle classes of l.a. county. the dodgers could be part of the solution to this. except bud selig won't let us have the chance. >> why not. >> he will have to address it. an l.a. council woman, her father was the l.a. county supervisor, she's running for u.s. congress and put on the campaign website that she will introduce a bill in the congress to strip major league baseball of the 1961 bylaw prevention of fan ownership and turning into a political issue to say the owners dropped the ball. the team ruptured from the
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community. let the fans actually pick up the baton and use the team as a way to be a life preserver for the people of los angeles and you know what? that could be applied in a llt of places. i'm a die hard new york mets fan and disgusted that the new york mets who i thought were my team are bernie madoff's team. hearing about the owners of the team allegedly using the team as a cash register to invest in bernie madoff. i know the people of new york smart enough to run the mets are not to trust bernie madoff and the people of los angeles smart enough not to do what frank mccourt did and fund a lifestyle and people look up on the internet if they're curious. it is like crack how they lived. if they want to live it up for themselves, they can. >> it's very simple solution and one that would only i think inspire more loyalty among the fan base and like you said allow us to drive some of that
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concession revenue like green bay into the struggling communities like queens here in new york or los angeles. not that crazy. >> not that crazy. also, you know, i spoke at freemont high school and spoke to 50 students and asked how many of them been to a los angeles dodgers game. one kid raised their hand and that says something so stark to me. i think major league baseball is so fat on stadium revenues, sweetheart cable deals and luxury boxes that they have forgotten about the generation of fans, generation of fans, by the way, paying for the stadiums locked out of the park. that's what needs to change to have a situation like you describe where sports is a refuge from the problems of the world instead of aing ing n agg >> i have playoffs here and there. i got the draft. i've got opening day. i should be, you know, as happy as a sports fan can ever be.
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david, always a pleasure. you make it very clear and you make it easy to see how it could be done and how it is being done. thank you very much. edge of sports, his book, "sports: how owners are ruining the games we love." think about that. shareholder-owned teams in every city in america, a simple solution and one that's already working in green bay. coming up here, msnbc, on "hardball" former labor secretary will be sitting with chris. but first, is the donald obama's trump card for 2012? we have thoughts in the monday rant right after this. too much on your plate?
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i think the republicans are making a terrible mistake in making this a big issue. we have immigration. we have the deficit. we have the economy. those are the things that the public cares about. >> the new york mayor appearing concerned of the birther backlash on the republican party. >> thanks, dylan. donald trump emerged as the best thing to happen to the birther movement since barack obama and emerged as the best thing to happen to barack obama since george w. bush. i've become convinced that whereas the white house wants hopes sarah palin would run for president they're praying that the donald will. the reason? he's made it clear he lacks the ability or courage to campaign on real issues like the economy or foreign affairs. he turned what could have been a legitimate campaign into a
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three-ring circus. he looks more like the clown. listening to trump and more recently his wife try to make sense of this performance art, i was reminded of the story of a beauty queen that found herself the victim of a whisper queen. while rumors that he was born a mister, it was untrue and embarrassing but a compliment. see, the rumors meant that some of them were so worried they couldn't beat her that they tried to get her disxwal if ied altogether. donald trump and the conservative supporters appear to be earn issed despite the ratings, the gop field is so weak they may not be able to beat him on the issues and doing what they can to disqualify him. their concern is well founded. with each passing day, the lineup looks more like the seven dwarfs with a number of them vying for dopey. if that's good news for me, think again. those of us that cover politics want to see a competitive race
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for than anything. a 2012 horse race seems unlikely. then again, i could be surprised. trump could not stop pandering and transform the flirtation with running for office from the project it is into something to take seriously or he could tap into the ground swell of support of the base and by base i don't mean birthers. i mean, the blacks. according to trump, he has a great relationship with us. president obama, you've been warned. >> if you were to look at the system, forget the candidates, forget trump, forget obama, forget all of it. is not trump or for that matter simply playing into a system that rewards is worst actors for their worst behavior? so trump saying, listen, i could walk out and make a speech about chinese trade policy, i could walk out and make a speech about lack of jobs in america or the
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banking system or the health care system and it would get very little play, i would get very little attention and not talked about but i'm smart enough, donald trump, i say that tongue in cheek, to know that i'm dealing with a lowest dmon denominator system that's driven by the stupidest and least attractive human characteristics and that means i play the birther card? >> in a word, yes. and when's frustrating is we're playing into it right now and the thing is i'm sure both of us tried to focus -- you particularly focus on real issues. i try to write about real issues and the piece on sexual assault, this takes away attention from the issues and you have to say, if you cannot beat them, join them. >> at the end of the day we have to challenge all of ourselves to set up that city in washington,

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