tv The Rachel Maddow Show MSNBC May 12, 2012 6:00am-7:00am EDT
like this. there's the trigger handle thing that you squeeze to make the gas come out. over the nozzle part is the part that we have circled in yellow. it's this big, black plastic hood. that big, black plastic hood has been there in gas stations in most places in the country since 1994. see most of the air pollution, most of the smog caused by burning gas as a fuel for cars is what comes out of the tail pipe of the car. but we also cause air pollution and we cause smog in the way that we fill up our cars with gas. the gas fumes that escape while you are pumping gas into your car, those fumes are air pollution. that big, black rubber hood thing was designed to capture the fumes while you were pumping gas. yes, you are still putting gas into your car, which when you burn it in your car will create air pollution.
you are avoiding creating a second source of air pollution with the big stink of fumes when you fill up. since the black hood thing went into place, since that regulation was put into effect back in the '90s, auto manufacturers have changed the way that gas tanks are designed. they have changed it to accommodate that concern about the fumes that escape while you're filling up. for nearly 20 years, we have been counting on that big, black plastic thing on the hose to take care of the big air stink pollution problem when you fill up at the pump. but now because auto manufacturers are taking care of it, they are taking care of that problem inside the car. they have rebuilt gas tanks so the gas tanks themselves, in the car, deal with most of the problem. because of that, those big, black, plastic, rubbery hood thing that goes over the gas nozzle that make it harder to fill up your car but make it harder to fill up your motorcycle or gas can, those big black things are going to go
away. the obama administration and environmental protection agency announced they attend to phase out the rubber boots on gas pump handles now used to capture harmful gas leap vapors while refueling cars. the white house decision is part of the latest government-wide review of federal regulations. we will remain vigilant when it comes to unnecessary burdens on america's families and businesses. getting rid of the regulation that requires that big, plastic boot on the gas handle, the white house says will save the people who up gas stations a few thousand dollars and that will in turn make your gas prices lower, which is better for you and better for the economy. depending on whether or not your car has an upgraded gas tank that will capture the fumes so the gas pump handle doesn't have to, this rule, getting rid of the hood of the gas pump handle may result in you getting a
little high for free the next time you fill up. so maybe that's a benefit, too, provided what you feel is high rather than sick or asthmatic. they were looking for a regulation to get rid of and they decided looking at the gas pump handle that this was the regulation they were going to get rid of. on the campaign trail, former massachusetts governor mitt romney spent all week saying he doesn't want to talk about super anti-gay rights. he doesn't want to talk about medical marijuana, contraception or abortion. he has policies that he wants to pursue once he becomes president, but he doesn't want to talk about these things while campaigning unless hesitating in talking to a specific audience that will love him. i'll be talking about that later in the show. what mitt romney says he wants to talk about instead of that other stuff, what he says he wants to talk about is the economy. he wants to talk about the obama record that's been so bad on the economy. when you let mitt romney do that, when you let him talk about what he says is the thing he wants to talk about in this
campaign, this reason why he's running, this is what he says. >> hey, mr. president, you're getting it all wrong. he has more than doubled the number of regulations, the rate of regulation he's adding to our nation. across america regulators just multiplying like rabbits and making ithearteder and harder for enterprises to grow and understand what their future might be. >> the regulations are invading the freedom of every day americans. >> regulations are insiding the freedom of every day americans. this is not a sidebar or boutique issue for the romney campaign. this is essentially their central critique of what is wrong with the obama administration. this is the main argument that they have got against barack obama on the economy. it is the main reason they say that mitt romney should replace president obama in the white house. it's the main thing that he wants to talk about.
it's how many new regulations barack obama has put into place. barack obama has put fewer regulations into place than george w. bush did. there were more new government regulations created in the first three years of the george w. bush administration than there were in the first three years of the obamaed a medication administration. barack obama has slowed down the pace of new regulations when you compare him with the last guy, a republican. it's not true when mitt romney says that president obama is creating some unprecedented number of new regulations. a shorter way of saying it's not true, is to say it's a lie. and it is a lie. but even if it is a lie and you say it frequently enough, you can sometimes make people believe it's true. if you make it the centerpiece of your campaign, one of two things can happen. you'll be laughed off a stage to be a liar, which is not happening to mitt romney, or people with start to believe the lie you say every day. and that raises an interesting question about this really specific policy about the gas
pump. this gas pump thing that's about to change. almost everybody who uses a gas pump in america is about to experience this directly, the elimination of a government regulation on something that you physically have to personally deal with to put gas in your car. 7b8g does that have a political affect? does that translate at a retail politics level? does that counter this republican argument from mitt romney that barack obama is regulation happy? your direct experience at the gas pump is about to be that this president has gotten rid of regulations. it's a very subtle thing but subtle things like this can have a powerful impact when you're talking about something that sticks with people and affects millions and millions of people. the political impact or the way you personally interact with the government and the way you personally experience a policy change or the affect of something that a politician did, that can affect in a life-long way the way you think about that policy, the way you think about
that politician. that individual affect part of politics is something that republicans have long appreciated. in 2008, before the big financial crash but when the economy was slowing down, president george w. bush passed a stimulus act. what? republicans, a stimulus act? yes. george w. bush passed two stimulus acts. he did it in 2001 as well. reagan had a big stimulus act and so did george h.w. bush. that is the way you deal with recessions and economic slowdowns. it's normal no matter what you hear on fox news or the crazy part of your radio. the political geniuses of the george w. bush administration decided to get money out into the economy, to pursue stimulus and get money out in the economy that the americans would spend, they decided to distribute that money just by sending everybody a check. a check made out to you from the
bush administration. here is some money. it's from the government. please go spend it. i'm not kidding. this is what they did. >> these rebates will provide eligible americans with payments of up to $600 a person, $1200 for couples and $300 per child. >> every man, woman and child in america getting free money from the government. thank you george w. bush. as you saw there he called it a rebate, but this wasn't a rebate. you weren't overcharged for something. your child had not paid too much money in the government and therefore needed to get $300 back. it was just a check from gorge w. bush to you, please spend it. it was a government handout, not that there's anything wrong with that. this is political genius. at a very base level, dude's giving you hundreds of dollars for nothing. it kind of makes you like the guy. right? policy-wise, it was not as much
genius as this was in political terms. political terms this is very smart, but in policy terms it did have weakness. if you spend somebody a check for $600 or $1200, most people's instincts is not to take it to the bank, flip it over and get all the money back in cash and spend that cash immediately. some people might do that. overall, most people, the instinct will be to deposit the check and not spend all of it at once. in terms of the whole economy, the point of doing the stimulus is that you really want people to spend the money you're sending them. you want them to spend all of it or as much of it as possible. saving may help you as an individual, but it does not help an economy in need of stimulus. it is not what you need a stimulus for. rather than sending everybody a lump sum check like george w. bush did, a much better way
to stimulate the economy is to give people money in a way that doesn't encourage them to save
it. give them money that doesn't make much of a splash. just put 20, 30 or 40 bucks in their paycheck every week. if you get the money that way, you're likely to just spend 20 or 30 or 40 more bucks than you would have spent. the more low key you make it, the better policy it is as stimulus. you do have to give up that
great moment. you have to give up that ed mcmahon publishers clearinghouse moment that you get from doing it in this loud and splashy but less good way. the george w. bush administration did it in the loud and splashy but less good way. when president obama did a stimulus, they did it the way that's better for the economy but doesn't give the president much credit. when obama did it they decided to do the stimulus in part in the form of a payroll tax desuction, so everybody got a few more bucks in their paycheck every couple of weeks. it stimulates the economy way more directly and efficiently.
the cost is there's no check in the mail moment that makes you like the president who sent you the money. the policy is better but the cost is that the president does not get credit. oh democrats, of course they do it that way. in today's news there's a sign that maybe democrats are learning a lesson on this type of politics. it's not a lesson about policy. it's a lesson about how to get credit for policy. there's a chance that you may be about to get a publisher's clearinghouse head mcmahon check from obama care. the secretary of health kathleen sebelius is blogging about it today at the white house website. health reform or as the republicans call it obamacare is one of these things that if you ask people about what's in it, they really like what's in it. they can get insurance without a preexisting condition. that's great. i can get insurance if i have a pre-existing condition. that's great. they can't make your insurance more expensive because you're a woman. that's great. kids can stay on their parents insurance until 26, that's great. the things in health reform are
things people like. these are very popular policies, but when you ask people if they like health reform, heck no, i hate health reform. do you know what's in it? keep it down, i'm busy hating health reform, but yes i do like all the things that are in it. one of the things that are in health reform is something to keep the cost of health insurance low. whatever your health insurance company is charging you, they have to spend at least 80% of that on health care, on actually providing you health care. so advertising and bonuses for their ceos and generic overhead cost has to be less than 20% of what you pay. they call it the 80/20 rule. and the punishment for companies that don't meet that requirement is genius. it's political genius. those companies have to pay the difference back to you in a check that's made out to you, that comes with this cover letter.
those companies have to pay the difference back to you in a check that's made out to you that comes with this cover letter. this rebate is required by the affordable care act, the health reform law. honestly, they should just add to it, you know, obama care. the policy here is kind of a generically common sense idea. if i'm going to have to spend money on health insurance, don't waste my money on ceo bonuses. to make that not just a generically popular common sense concept, but to make it something you know you are personally benefiting from in a dollar and crepts way, thank you obamaed a medication, thank you mr. president, thank you mr. president's signature health reform act, the benefit of that policy is going to show up physically in your mailbox in the form of a check. for the tiny little ed mcmahon. i'm sorry. he's dead. that will not be true. the retail, i did this for you. i am the check in your mailbox
political salesmanship, that idea is not dead. democrats are learning this game too, at last. ka-ching. we have a cnbc contributor here with us, governor rendell, thank you for being here. >> my pleasure, rachel. >> how much do you think it affects the political reputation of a policy or a program or even a politician when people do personally experience something in public policy and they understand where it came from? >> very much so. i'll give you a perfect example, if you and i went into the streets of philadelphia today and stopped a thousand people and asked did you get a tax cut from president obama's stimulus plan, my guess is no more than 20 out of a thousand would say yes. everyone that makes less than $200,000 did get a tax cut. it was totally lost.
lost because we didn't send the check in the mail but also lost because the president didn't go on the tv early on in stimulus before the republicans had chance to spin it and told people explicitly that they were going to get $800 and they would see it as their payroll deduction tax went down for the next year. we never did that. we were terrible at spinning the good things in stimulus and also terrible at spinning things in health care. as a result, those things which i think were significant achievement, he got no credit for. >> ever time i'm driving and i see a big sign on the side of the road that says this improvement project funded by the american recovery act, which is the name of the stimulus project, i tend to think of that as cutting both ways because on the one hand you are trying to attribute a tangible benefit to taxpayers. >> i know what you're going to say. >> at the same time the reason
someone is seeing that sign is because they are sitting in traffic. >> what i would have done, i would have got a mascot. put him right on the side. number two, i would add jobs created by this revitalization project. boom. big letters right underneath it. >> can we interpret on this gas pump deregulation issue the insurance rebate cover letter? these other things that are happening to put the kangaroo on these policies. do you think that's a sign the administration is getting better at messaging and trying to get credit for some of the things they have done that aught to a populist appeal? >> sure. there's no question about it. i'm not sure they picked the right regulation, but the answer to mitt romney and all these people who say we're overregulated, et cetera, it's easy to say like republicans used to say when they wanted to cut the welfare budget, there's waste, frauds and abuse. okay. tell me where. they couldn't. if the regulations are hurting business, give us some concrete examples. spell out five or six that will hurt people.
number one they don't hurt american business or number two, if they do, it's because they are protecting children from asthma and the public would understand it. but if you say, we're overregulated, the government says we are overregulated, but let them spell out which regulations they get rid of. >> when he says he doesn't want to talk about anything else, he has other policies but really what he wants to talk about is the economy, when he says he wants to replace about the obama policies is regulation, that's his central idea that the obama administration is in a position where they have introduced fewer new regulations than the george w. bush administration. the critique from romney is just factually wrong. it is a lie. it's an accusation that is not true. should the obama administration, in your political judgment, just be saying that. that's a lie, should they be trying to change the narrative, should they be trying to refrain it? >> absolutely. every one of the elected
officials should be saying it and printing it out and having big charts. >> former pennsylvania governor, ed rendell, thank you for your time. >> don't forget that kangaroo. >> i think of them as treacherous. we can come up with something. thank you, sir. all right, guess who is delivering the commencement address tomorrow at liberty university? the same college funded by the preacher who once railed against the day menace of -- that's not a kangaroo. oh, yes, tingy-winky. we have a close encounter coming up next. and zyrtec® is different than claritin® because it starts working faster on the first day you take it. zyrtec®. love the air. [ sneezes ] and i thought "i can't do this, it's just too hard." then there was a moment. when i decided to find a way to keep going. go for olympic gold and go to college too.
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happy friday. i am so glad it's friday. i'm pretty sure this has been the gayest week in mitt romney's whole life. on sunday, the vice president went on "meet the press" and said that gay people getting married was okay with him. the next day, washington convulsed over this news. the white house besieged with questions about what this meant. the words gay or same sex used 28 times during monday's white house press briefing. the next day on tuesday north carolina voted to ban legal recognition for same sex couples. the next day, on wednesday, president obama, the president of the united states went on national television and said he was for recognizing the right of same sex couples to get married. the next day, on thursday, "the washington post", a sort of mitt
romney romney's, the republican nominee, mitt romney as a young man bullying two closeted gay students including mr. romney leading a group of boys and pinning one student down and mr. romney cutting off the boy's long hair while the kid cried and screamed for help. the next day is friday. the next day is today. today is the day that gq magazine published this profile of mr. romney's to strategist and close aid. he outed a massachusetts state representative transgender. by outing her as transgender, he killed her career. he was the first one to put that information into print. i can remember his glee when he found the birth certificate said former reporter robert connolly. the senior advisor outing this woman in the state house brought a swift end to the
representative's future on beacon hill. you know how some days are red letter days on the calendar. this has been a rainbow lettered week in the campaign to elect mitt romney to president of the united states. but if the way too gay mitt romney week started on friday, it is only friday. that means his way too gay for him week is not over. tomorrow mr. romney is giving the commencement address at jerry faldwell's university. a liberty university. if mr. romney was hoping to get away from the anti-gay baggage this week, there's nowhere to put those bags down safely yet. not when this is your saturday plan. >> what we saw on tuesday as terrible as it is could be ma this skul if, in fact, god lifts the curtain and allows the enemies of america to give us probably what we deserve. >> that's my feeling. i think we've seen the
anti-chamber to terror. we haven't seen what they can do to the major population. >> the aclu has to take a lot of blame for this. i know i will hear from them on this, but throwing god successfully with the help of the federal court system, throwing god out of the square, out of the public schools, the abortionists have got to bear some burden for this because god will not be mocked and destroy 40 million innocent babies, we make god mad. i really believe that the pagans and the abortionists and the feminists and the gays and lesbians who are trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, all of them who tried to secularize america, i point the thing in their face and say you helped make this happen. >> those are the founders of
regent university explaining why two days after 9/11 why we as a nation deserve what we got as the homo. also people for the american way. jerry said he was sorry for having said that. this is the guy who used to send out fund-raising solicitations. direct mail like this. please remember homosexuals do not reproduce. they recruit. many of them are after my children and your children. jerry falwell is dead now, but at his school they are keeping the faith. at his liberty university they kicked the democratic party club off the campus because it has support for gay rights. they dropped out from cpac in protest of a gay republican group, a gay conservative group being allowed to participate in the conference. the school's liberty christian academy, their high school, says flat out that it, quote, does not employ teachers or accept students who are homosexual.
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like soap is for showers. everyone grows with miracle-gro. one of the things that rick santorum proposed wile running for president when it looked like he might have real chance at the nomination is that we should kind of sell idaho. this is what it was like this year in the republican primary. this is difference between the two main alternatives to mitt romney in the republican party. newt gingrich wanted to acquire the moon as the 51st state in the union. not kidding. rick santorum wanted to divest ourselves of most of idaho. all the federally controlled land in idaho he wanted to sell. rick santorum is not going to be the republican nominee for president, but imagine that he was. in fact, i think this is a useful thought experiment. imagine that rick santorum not only got nominated but he won the general election. imagine president santorum and
imagine that as president santorum, he decided to follow through on his campaign promise to sell idaho, to sell off the federally owned, publicly owned parts of that state. as president, president rick santorum decides that he's going to figure out what the taxpayers have spent on those lands. what our public national investment has been there. and then he's going to sell that land for 99% off that price. essentially giving it away. 99% off. then, after he's done being president and done selling off our national property for cheap, now that he's an ex-president, he's going to go into business with the new owner of idaho. he's going to go into business with the person he sold our land to with a scheme to make money off that property that he sold for pennies on the dollar. he's now got himself on both sides of the deal that took what we owned, we got paid 1% of what we put into it, but he's now going to get rich off it personally based on what he did in office. that would be crazy, right?
i mean, that would be even crazier than just the idea of president rick santorum. there's not going to be a president rick santorum. but that process that i just described really has just happened. in michigan, pontiac, michigan, a city more notable for what it has lost than for what it still has. the detroit lions used to play in pontiac's silver dome arena, they left. the gm truck factory in town left. gm used to make the car called pontiac here, but that's gone, too. the factory and the whole brand. the city of pontiac, michigan, is so down on its luck that three years ago the state of michigan appointed an emergency manager with nearly unilateral authority to run the town. "the los angeles times" at the time suggested thinking of him as an unelected king. after a few months on the job that unelected king decided to sell the biggest asset. he currently owned pontiac
silverdome. he decided to sell it in 2009 in the middle of the worst down swing of the great recession. when the emergency manager proposed auctioning off this asset, the city council said, are you crazy? you're going to try to sell this thing in this economy. it's the worst possible time to sell. they voted against it unanimously. in michigan, once the state takes over your city with the emergency management, the elected officials have no power anymore. the pontiac city count sit's vote against silling selling the silverdome meant zip, nothing. the city council's vote meant nothing. he pit it up for sale with ad like this. >> out here at the silverdome we have anything from your dirt shows, home and garden shows, trade shows, concerts. all the way down to anything you would like to do on top of a football field, soccer, flag football, indoor football, arena
football. you can have lacrosse down there. >> up to anything you want and more. we'll help you. that was the message from the emergency manager as he sold the public's silverdome. >> of course, if the new owner has other ideas for silverdome, and the land on which it stands, the city of pontiac says they are fully supportive. >> the reason we want to sell without reserve is we don't want to exclude potential bidders. we want people to think out of the box, to be creative as possible, to use this site for the best possible use that they would like to bring forward. this is an excellent location and will be great value for potential bidders. >> the citizens of pontiac spent about $55 million building the silverdome in the mid-1970s. in 2009 under the genius no reserve auction idea, the middle of the recession, the arena sold for just over half of a million
dollars to a canadian real estate zillionaire. last month the emergency manager's name surfaced again. the local paper reports on the event to expand casino gambling in michigan, including at pontiac silverdome. they're trying to get an amendment on the ballot in november so they can turn the silverdome into a casino for him. among the people trying to bring it to silverdome is the former emergency manager. the guy who sold pontiac silverdome for a song and who now represents in business the canadian guy he sold it to with whom he is now working to pass the gambling amendment. so metaphorically speaking, this would be like fake president santorum using his power as president to sell idaho for 99%
off and now he's in business with the guy he sold it to for a song and now they can use that land to get rich themselves. pontiac used to have a thing called the silverdome. one guy made the decision to give it away for no money and now he's in business to make some real money off it privately for himself. suckers. a spokeswoman for this former emergency manager tells us that he met the new owner of the silverdome, the canadian zillionaire guy, only after he sold him the stadium. he says the manager has only been working for the guy since january. she says the casino will be great for pontiac. they will get tax revenue. maybe this historic sale was a great deal for pontiac. the best way to sell it at the best price, the best opportunity, i can't say that's something for the people of pontiac to decide. it's their asset. it belongs to them. they did not get a say. they did not get a vote. the city council got to have a meaningless symbolic protest vote because the state took away
their power to decide things for themselves. when the city council took that symbolic unanimous vote not to sell the silverdome they actually predicted almost exactly how little the stadium would sell for in a no-reserve open auction. they were right. but their foresight and vote meant nothing because the state had given one guy unilateral authority to do whatever he wanted with the assets of pontiac. what he wanted to do may be great deal for him. it's not just this one town. pontiac and detroit and a lot of other places in michigan have trouble, major financial trouble. but why is the solution to the problems to get rid of democracy, to get rid of elected officials and the quaint american idea that we vote for american officials to represent us to make decisions about what is best for our towns. why is unilateral authority by one person better? is democracy a problem in america now? is it a bad system of government? is it to risky when the going gets rough? does it only work in rich places?
is important yok beater off for having its fate in the hand of the guy that made this deal than the city council who wouldn't have done it this way? earlier this year they put enough signatures in a petition drive for the republican governor's radically expanded emergency manager law up for a citizens repeal. last month the republicans on a state election board threw the hundreds of thousands of signatures out. they said they could not be sure that the type was large enough. they could not be sure that the font size on one part of the petition might not be big enough. with worrying about that, they decided the throw out all those signatures. doesn't matter that they got enough. the group trying to overturn the new radically expanded emergency manager law in michigan will get a hearing on the appeal of the signatures next week before a panel of elected judges. the people in michigan tell us we'll almost surely end up in the state supreme court where the judges are elected and come with party ties.
as if their struggles were not hard enough, michigan's republican governor rick snyder has now filed a friend of the court brief telling the court to protect the emergency manager law that he says he considers central to his governance. if the people are allowed to vote on what happens to them, that is apparently in the way of what he wants to do in michigan. what he wants to do to michigan. what he wants to do for michigan for their own good. michael moore joins us next. is . the day starts with arthritis pain... a load of new listings... and two pills. after a morning of walk-ups, it's back to more pain, back to more pills. the evening showings bring more pain and more pills. sealing the deal... when, hang on... her doctor recommended aleve. it can relieve pain all day with fewer pills than tylenol. this is lois... who chose two aleve and fewer pills for a day free of pain. and get the all day pain relief of aleve in liquid gels. ovider is different of pain. but centurylink is committed to being a different kind of communications company
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when buying the silverdome in auction at november, you get more more than just a world renowned stadium and the prime real estate on which it sits. >> of course, if the new owner has other ideas for silverdome and and there on which it stands, the city of pontiac says they are fully supportive. >> the reason we want to sell without reserve is we don't want to exclude any potential bidders. we want people to think out of the box, to be as creative as possible and use this site for the best possible use that they would like to bring forward. this is an excellent location, and will be a great value for potential bidders. >> you can be part of this historic auction of the pontiac silverdome. >> joining us now from the interview is michael moore. the filmmaker and author and michigander down to his ball cape. good to see you. >> nice to see you, thank you. >> for many months i have been reporting on michigan and every
time i finish reporting on something going on in michigan, i ask what the sam hill is up in michigan. the republican rescue plan for the towns and cities in michigan that are in trouble is that you have to first stop local democracy. then you can get to work on fixing these things. >> right. we have to burn down the village in order to save it. >> yes. whether or not it is -- we'll get to where that comes from. why they want to do it that way, but does it work? flint's had an emergency manager. >> we already did this in the last decade. flint already did it. it didn't do any good in part because the emergency was 30 years ago. the emergency is long past. our peak employment was 1978. it's been downhill ever since. flint and the state of michigan has been going 34 years now through this. >> there's this idea that where there's big problems or there's big challenges, democracy is too
slow or too inefficient or something. one person acting unilaterally can really get it done, can really fix it. there's this idea that it works whether or not it's right. >> well, if it worked, then people would go, well, okay, i guess it saved the state. it doesn't work. it doesn't work. flint didn't get any better. pontiac isn't getting any better. detroit. the whole state. not just those cities. there's going to be more than ten entities they are going to take over, but the problem is the state of michigan is bankrupt. the state of michigan is out of money. so i'm wondering if governor schneider, how he would feel if, say, tomorrow morning president obama said michigan is in a depression. they are not able to pay their bills. the federal government is going to take it over. >> i'm going to appoint a michigan czar to overrule all local voting. >> from ohio. >> yes, exactly. or even from michigan. the idea that voting is what
gets you in trouble, that that's somehow the cause of problems that they need to stop in order to do it, i feel like, yeah, it's happening in michigan. it's of national importance. it's hard to get anybody on board with this. >> i've been saying this now for i don't know how long, up teen years, it seems. we're the laboratory. the capitalism laboratory. and the experiments have not been going well for quite some time. it -- we need -- first of all, let me say this about the emergency manager. if i were the mayor of flint and when he took over flint, i would just say, sorry, we're going to continue business today just as we did yesterday. because i've got to tell you something, governor schneider doesn't have a set of keys. he can't get into city hall. we need civil disobedience in michigan to stop this, first of all. the thing with the silverdome, your lead in story, i've been
to the silverdome many times. actually, this year is the 25th anniversary of probably two of the greatest religious experiences that took place in the state of michigan and i was there for both of them. pope john paul ii, i took my dad there to mass, 93,000 people. and wrestle mania three, hulk hogan slammed the giant. 93,000 there for that. this place is like sacred ground to michigan, but all kidding aside, half a million dollars, $500,000, you'll have a hard time getting a studio apartment in new york city for that. they just gave it away. >> i went back and read the contem contemptorary news conference and when the city council, which had no power that point, could
be overruled from him, was saying, no, don't do this. they correctly predicted. you're not going to get more than half a million dollars for this thing. they were like, you're crazy. it turns out they were exactly right. >> what you said about it being a national problem, that really is the issue. see, we're not really broke. if we could stop these wars, we're still spending 2, 3, $4 billion a week on afghanistan. i mean, seriously, if michigan could just have like monday and tuesday of one week, just a billion dollars, what would happen? the problems would be solved. but i was talking to your producer backstage here and said, what really has to happen is that we have to stop as a society along allowing private corporations, letting them call all the shots. i know this is going to be a little strange to people because they think, no, mike, gm has a right to do -- no, they don't. we tell them to put air bags in the car and what the gas mileage s has to be. we let them build crappy cars for two or three decades and it
killed us. everybody i know lost their job. when the state has suffered, when do we have a right at citizens to come in and say, you know, you don't actually get to make all of the decisions because they affect us. even when it's right down to building a crappy car, you're not listening to the consumers, what they want. you keep building the stuff and here's the results of it. we, the people, pay for the results of higher crime, more divorce, alcoholism, drug abuse, suicide, all of the social problems that go with massive unemployment. and that is what these auto companies did to the state of michigan and many other states. and i think at some point -- i know we're not going to fix this this year, but at some point down the road, we the people have got to say -- i know this sounds like socialism or communism to people. it's one of those words. >> you say good morning and people hear communism. >> yes. but the last time i was here, the guy that drove me back here,
it was a chevy suburban, those things used to be horrible machines, metal and everything rattled and the dome light didn't work. and i said, wow, this is really a nice car, what happened? and he says, well, ever since the government took over, they are building better cars. well, what does that say? so more of that, more government intervention, more stimulus, like you said at the beginning of the show, and maybe we'll have a chance. but, man, it's -- we've had -- we've really had it kicked out of us in michigan and i know a lot of other people in michigan have, too. we can't be defeated by this. >> michael moore, filmmaker, author, it's always good to see you. thank you. >> good to see you. we have a best new thing in the world. special friday edition which has no political content whatsoever coming up next. it's so good. really, it's next. [ male announcer ] this is genco services --
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the best new thing in the world today could easily but the 11 new residents of the washington zoo. for the record, here they are. they are due to be introduced tomorrow. they are 11 asian small clod otters. these 11 otters are actually a family comprised of two parents and nine babies. obviously, these guys could be the best new thing in the world, because, i mean, to put it bluntly and inarguably, otters rule. even though they look like cats crossed with weasels, they are the cutest things in their world. otters swim on their backs, and they rule. and these guys in particular, they are a threatened species. they are the smallest and most
social otter species in the world, which means they are the cutest of the living breed. the best new thing has to do with their names. all right. are you ready? the parents are named chowder and clementine. the nine children are pork chop, pickles, safron, olive, peaches, radish, rudabega and kevin. kevin? he's like the marilyn munsten. he's the weird one. because of his goofy name. kevin. kevin the asian clod otter, the endangered species version of the boy named sue. he's not like the other otters. it's the best new thing in the world today. happy friday. it's a whole otter thing. "weekends with alex witt" starts now. the check's in the mail. many could be getting money in the mail from president obama. we'll explain. and the politics